As this is being written, it’s almost 2 in the morning. There’s a major deadline at work. A major deadline at home. There was a major deadline missed on Monday. Taxes are due in April. And, I’m trying to maintain what’s left of my sanity. My body aches every time I wake up in the morning. It begs for a few days of sleep. Normally, when waking up in the morning, I reach for a bold cup of coffee to feebly add a little energy to my tired body. This time a generous cup of The Republic of Tea’s u·matcha Green Tea Latte (recipe here) is whisked into a foamy drink. Matcha is green tea leaves grinded into a fine powder, and it has more caffeine than whole tea leaves. The amount of caffeine doesn’t cause my nerves to become jittery like coffee. Instead, the matcha (as with most teas) steadily increases my energy in an unnoticeable calm manner. With a banana, whole wheat toast slathered with butter and marmalade, I calmly start the day to weave in and out of crowded subways to walk up numerous stairs that lead into work. Read more
There was a choice to use any FungusAmongUs products (The name is laughable, but for mushroom lovers, like me, it sounds like pure joy). It was a tough decision, because I was too intimidated to pick the whole truffle. I wanted it, but it’s not nice to come off as a greedy food blogger. To ask for it means the recipe better compete with a top chef on the food networks. I tried writing recipes incorporating truffles, but they only needed simple (still delicious) mushrooms. For a long time, I was indecisive, because they’re many FungusAmongUs products to choose. The final choice was fair: flavorful dried chanterelle mushrooms and the exquisite truffle mustard. Read more
As a graphic designer, I want my ‘brown bag’ lunch to taste and look visually delicious. Otherwise, I’m likely to toss it in the garbage and pay for a fresher option from a restaurant. Such actions eventually add up to plenty of regret and an empty wallet. Learning to pack lunches take time and practice. When lunch containers reveal a salad of crispy lettuce and colorful, layered ingredients or a fragrant soup waiting to be heated in the microwave, my wallet stays full.
The initial inspiration for packing lunches come from bento boxes with separate containers or compartments. The separate containers help maintain the freshness of the meal (good for hot and cold recipes). Another bento-style lunch is creating a meal in one bowl, in which the ingredients harmoniously enhance each other. Read more
The Bed-Stuy Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)
Last week, was the first Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) pick up. My canvas bag was filled with organic kale, collard, dandelion, bok choy, and Swiss chard greens. A large head of romaine, a small head of butter lettuce, green garlic and a dozen eggs were also included in the share. I dutifully took my bags home, and the next two hours were spent cleaning, cutting and packaging the greens. The next day, a salad was made with a mixture of butter lettuce and dandelion greens. Goat cheese, mulberries and a small red onion were tossed together in a bowl. A few tablespoons of Cilantro-Almond Pesto were mixed into Greek yogurt to make a salad dressing. That was an easy salad to make. Now, a few more bags had to be sautéed, simmered, stir-fried or served fresh. Read more
St. Patrick’s Day Dinner: Steamed Salmon, Sweet Potato Colcannon and Asparagus with Roasted Pistachios
Did you ever eat Colcannon, made from lovely pickled cream?
With the greens and scallions mingled like a picture in a dream.
Did you ever make a hole on top to hold the melting flake
Of the creamy, flavoured butter that your mother used to make?
Yes you did, so you did, so did he and so did I.
And the more I think about it sure the nearer I’m to cry.
Oh, wasn’t it the happy days when troubles we had not,
And our mothers made Colcannon in the little skillet pot.
It was the luck of the Irish, amid all the twitters, I learned about colcannon from Foodwishes. A traditional Irish dish, colcannon is made with white potatoes, salt and pepper. Cooked kale or cabbage is thrown in for a healthy measure, and this dish wouldn’t be Irish without generous quantities of cream or milk. It would seem as if this old world dish had been in my index of recipes my whole life, for it’s combining two of my favorite vegetables: potatoes and kale.
Being of the new world, I wanted to add an American twist via the way of another old world, Africa. Instead of using Irish white potatoes, this version is made with sweet potatoes. Ironically, this dish reflects the Irish flag’s colors of green for the kale, white for the cream, and orange for the sweet potatoes. It has a rich taste worth a pot of gold.