Tag Archives: healthy cooking

Feeling Devilish!


Life has gotten particularly hotter these days and truly more quiet. With my recent life overhaul, my foodie ventures are verging on dangerous. And undeniably, this unchartered territory is more than welcome! Using tamed jalapenos in lighter deviled eggs brought a little zing to an overdue and well-deserved celebration. Using greek yogurt, rice vinegar, tamed jalapenos, and smoky paprika really played tricks on everyone’s  tongue. I hope my addition to the party showed everyone the fiery side of me. After all, when food is your passion, all you really want is your flavors to be appreciated and remembered.


Winter Tagliatelle


Us Italians know how to warm things up for the holidays. In looking at my traditional gluttonous Christmas Day gorge of meat laden pasta, me and mini lighten things up. ( Christmas Eve is meat free. Christmas Day, not so much).

Here is our winter tagliatelle, perfection in its imperfection, due to a pasta roller mishap!

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Lighter Pho Fare with Mini Me

wpid-2015-01-28_18.46.00.jpgMidweek, me and mini me try something out of our comfort zone to break up the monotony of our staple recipes. Routine bores me.  The chill factor climbed for us this month and heavy comfort foods are not comforting for my thighs! Sacrificing flavor for tight jeans is not my style either, so I found  a way to take my Italian cravings to the far east.

With some organic pork and ginger, our love for meatballs met my love for Vietnamese Pho.  While this traditional noodle soup is filled with mixed meats and seafood, portions can be heavy and the flavors can sometimes overwhelm each other.

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With or Without You: Guilt-Free Baking


Simple ingredients often fuse together and create a rare foodie surprise. The basics bring out unmatched flavor and passion. What better place to sharpen your minimalist skills than in the kitchen!

Going flour-less ( when possible) is one way to do it– my flour-less banana chocolate chip muffins sans the carbs is heaven for the hips and heart. Nothing beats when gluttony meets healthy. These petite muffins are full of fiber, potassium, healthier glucose, and powerful antioxidants. So, have another.. and another ! Then, go outside and jump in a pile of leaves:)

This oat-hearty treat can fix a sweet tooth, but also pair as a brunch favorite. Anyone who knows me, knows I love BRUNCH. I am always looking for ways that me and mini me can satisfy late morning cravings. We found it. After much tweaking, we perfected this little morsel, and it is now a fall staple!

Using steel oats might seem grainy, but the texture is unmatched. If you want something less filling, you can blend simple oats until they are smooth.

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Fresh and Simple Summers


Me and mini me have been enjoying every sprouting food market within a 60 mile radius this season and I love it. To me, nothing heals the mind better than love and food. Seeing the pride of growers, cultivators, creators and area cooks inspires me.  My life recently has been full of a lot of new colors, flavors and aromas. All of this has reawakened stalled dreams and brought new life even into my kitchen. What better way to celebrate this heightened sense of awareness and passion than with a simple, bright meal.

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How Sweet It is!


Mini me shows me how it is done! Her simple blueberry pie
is a healthier version of the usual sugar laden staple. We use nothing but fresh blueberries, honey, lemon juice, lemon zest with a touch of starch to hold our little piece of heaven together. This one crust version, is complete with mini me’s light wheat crust. For a sweet touch, she always puts a heart somewhere in our baking. Love. Love. Love.

Pasta Pomodoro!

My recent ventures to some local and not-so-local markets has had me  and mini me eating well ! A well fed body and heart is all we  really need. Check, I have both covered! I made sure to pick up some fresh pasta from a small family eatery this weekend. Me and mini me do roll our own pasta, but we need to really try to infuse our variety. These new flavors have us inspired!20140523-233333.jpg

This week, I experimented with a red pepper cappellini, spinach fettuccini, and garlic-chive spaghetti .. so many possibilities. These fresh rolled bundles balance perfectly together.  Like the yin and yang of love, the flavors complement and enhance the fabulous union!

The art of bringing out their uniqueness, without masking their qualities can be challenging. When I want to enhance and not cloak..I turn to my homemade lemon-olive oil. I use a rich extra virgin olive oil  and 6 meyer lemons to create an oil that quickly infuses flavor without overdoing it. I store bottles of it and use it for skin care and culinary exploits.

I cooked 6 roma tomatoes, 3 cloves of garlic, a shallot, sea salt, crushed red pepper and a handful of capers in about 4 tablespoons of the oil. Once the tomatoes started to cook down, I added 8 torn basil leaves and 1/4 cup of fresh Romano.  When mixed together, I used tongs to create little nests of each flavor.  With some simple grilled chicken and a lemon vinaigrette, it was heaven. Close to it anyway!
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She is Such a Tart

They say the apple does not fall far from the tree. Me and mini-me have apples coming out of our ears, and she is just as contented as myself to create healthful treats. A fruit tart is one gluttonous way to elevate the day. Me and mini me made our apple-raspberry tart with honey, almonds, Jonagold apples and fresh raspberries. I wanted an antioxidant rich power snack that could also serve my emotional needs, I got it!

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We made a basic tart crust, but with whole wheat pastry flour and corn oil, to keep our bodies in stasis. We sliced 5 medium-sized apples, and about two handfuls of fresh raspberries. I added a mixture of 1/4 cup of succinat ( a Vegan sugar substitute but you can use granulated sugar as well) and fall spices. Next, a tablespoon of cinnamon, a good teaspoon of fresh nutmeg, and a teaspoon of cornstarch.

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Midday Cravings: A Better Brunch


Anyone who knows me, knows I prefer a lazy brunch to a harried early morning feast. A hot cup of coffee, a good old fashioned newspaper, and a lazy late morning brunch…thats me! The Italian in me prefers a brunch or late afternoon meal to late feasts. I need the whole day to work off my indulgences.

This is a very simple but healthy weekend fix that me and mini me adore. Some Italians call it a bulls eye.. It has so many names.. I just call it heaven.

I use a whole grain bread with a cleverly crafted center cut out (usually with the bottom of a glass). You can dip the bread in egg and milk, but here we did not because I made the bread and really wanted the flavor to shine through. I use some butter ( real butter) and slowly brown the bread on both sides adding some salt, pepper and oregano. I then crack an egg in the center, lower the heat and cover the pan.

Once the egg starts to cook, I flip over the egg and bread and add roasted red peppers or artichokes. Easy, simple and full of protein, fiber and omega 3s.

A perfect brunch, almost. Perfection is some jazz music and a nice mimosa on the side! Then off to a farmers market for our next fix.. Now that is my ideal day. Enjoy!!

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Lighten Up: Carbonara Done Right!


It’s been one of those weeks, where my body and mind need an overhaul. What better way than with the right food. When all else disappoints, carbonara and mini me do not.

We lightened up the traditional dish with whole grain pasta and vegetable stock. We browned some pancetta ( you can use American bacon but only a few pieces are needed) with shallots and garlic. Drain to a towel and put it back in the pan.

In the meantime I undercooked a pound of whole grain pasta. Make sure it is al dente because the starch will thicken the flavors. Take the pasta from the water in half the cooking time and add it to the pancetta mixture. Put the heat on medium. Use tongs to evenly distribute. Add sea salt, pepper and basil. Quickly add in two eggs making sure to keep the pasta moving as you mix.

Once it looks even, add in a cup of peas, 1/4 cup of cream and a good cup of Romano cheese. It will be thick. Add vegetable stock til your desired texture.
So simple and just the therapy I needed.

Here is mini me keeping our pasta moving!!!

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