Romesco is a Spanish sauce made with roasted peppers and almonds. Kind of like a pesto! You know I’m the queen of short-cuts and hacks, but I really think this sauce tastes better with freshly roasted peppers. If you’ve never made them before don’t worry, it’s really easy! Turn on a burner on your gas cooktop and set a pepper directly on the flame. Let the pepper completely charr on all sides, carefully turning with tongs when necessary. Remove the charred pepper from the burner and place it into a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let the pepper cool and steam in the bowl for 10 minutes, then rinse it under cool water, gently peeling off any, and all of the charred skin, and discarding the stem and seeds. Once you’ve peeled and seeded your peppers, you’ll end up with soft, sweet, tasty pepper flesh.
Note: If you don’t have a gas burner you can charr the pepper under your oven’s broiler.
Pulse all ingredients, except for the olive oil, in a food processor until smooth.
With the food processor running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil until fully incorporated.
Serve with grilled veggies, steak or chicken. Romesco is also a great addition to a crudités board and can even be spread on sandwiches!
Crisp pastry wrapped around roasted tomatoes and topped with tangy goat cheese. This roasted heirloom tomato tart is the perfect summer appetizer. While I don’t typically condone the use of store bought pie crust, this recipe will totally work with one.
Preheat the oven to 400.
Place the pie crust on a lightly floured work surface. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out to a 12-inch round that's about 1/8-inch thick. It's okay if the dough isn't perfectly round. Gently transfer the crust to a baking tray lined with parchment.
Slice the tomatoes into 1/4inch slices and arrange them in the center of the pie crust, leaving a 2 inch boarder around the edges. Season the tomatoes with salt and pepper.
Gently fold the edges of the dough over the tomatoes, covering about 2 inches of the filling and pleating the dough every 2 inches as you go. The great thing about this recipe is it's meant to be rustic so don't get too caught up trying to make it perfect!
Drizzle the tomatoes with 3 tbs olive oil. Brush the crust with the beaten egg. Bake for 40-45mins until golden brown.
While the galette is cooling, use a whisk to whip the goat cheese with a few drops of water until it is light and creamy. Slice the galette and serve with a heaping dollop of goat cheese and a generous turn of fresh cracked pepper.
This quick and easy pasta recipe is a great one to have in your dinner rotation. It’s a crowd pleaser and a great way to introduce new vegetables to kids. Broccoli rabe or rapini, tends to be really bitter. Blanching it first cuts the bitterness and sautéing it with the fat from the sausage, and a little bit of garlic, makes it wonderfully flavorful! If you can’t find broccoli rabe at your market you could substitute broccolini or a regular head of broccoli.
Heat a large sauté pan to medium high heat. Add a tbs of olive oil to the pan and sauté the sausage until golden brown and fully cooked. Remove the sausage from the pan and set to drain on a paper towel.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil and add two heaping tbs of salt. Blanch the broccoli rabe until bright green and tender, about 2-3mins. Use tongs or a wire mesh skimmer to remove the broccoli from the water and into an ice bath to cool. Once cool, drain on paper towels, squeeze to remove any excess water.
Cook the pasta to al dente in the same pot you just blanched the broccoli in. Reserve 1 cup of pasta water.
Give the broccoli a rough chop and then place it into the pan that you cooked the sausage in. If there is residual fat in the pan left over from the sausage then no need for extra oil. If not, add 2tbs of olive oil to the pan. Sauté for 2-3mins. Add the garlic slivers and a good pinch of salt.
Add the sausage back to the pan and then the orecchiette. Add 1/2c of pasta water. Let everything cook together for 3-4 minutes, stirring gently while reducing the liquid in the pan. Taste and add more salt if necessary, keeping in mind you'll be adding salty parmesan cheese at the end.
Divide the pasta among warmed plates or shallow bowls, top each portion with a hefty sprinkle parmesan and chili flake and serve immediately.
I just got back from an incredible weekend in Portland, it was my first time going. Quite a few people have mentioned that it’s a city I would love and they were not wrong. Its a really quick flight out of LA if you live in Southern California, great for a weekend away. I’m sharing some of my favorite spots below!
Where we stayed:
The Sneakaway: This airbnb was so beautiful and thoughtfully curated. I felt like we were staying in a mini luxury hotel! There were high ceilings and wooden beams, lot of plants and bright light. We loved it so much and will definitely stay there again on our next trip back!
What we ate:
Pine State Biscuits-Pine State Biscuits: Holy hell, we didn’t eat on or before our flight so we were pretty darn hungry by the time we landed in PDX. Pine State really hit the spot. They’re known for their biscuit/fried chicken and gravy. That’s exactly what we went for and we were not disappointed, I would definitely go back again.
Tusk I could sit here all day and sip tea and snack. The decor is so lovely. We came here for brunch and were looking for a lighter meal, Tusk had it. There’s lots of salads, grains and veggies on the menu. You could totally bring a vegan/vegetarian friend here.
Jacqueline Come here for happy hour! Dollar oysters and drink specials 5-7.
Canard To be honest I drank way too much wine at Canard so I can hardly remember everything we ate. I do remember the foie gras dumplings! Order them!
Pok Pok Really good Thai food that isn’t pad Thai. They’re known for their wings which were awesome. Everything was good here to be honest.
Olympia Provisions Check this place out for charcuterie. It’s another great happy hour spot. If you can’t tell by now I love a good happy hour. This place was in the same neighborhood as our airbnb.
Prince Coffee We had really, really good coffee here. They make their own stroopwafels here too which is fun. We split one with our lattes!
What we did:
Powells Book Store Iconic Portland bookstore. A must see if you’ve never been!
The Saturday Markets The Saturday Markets: If you’re there over the weekend check out the Saturday Markets where Portlands local artists and vendors sell their goods. Side note: it’s all tax free!
Multnomah Falls Multinomah Falls is a great introduction to the Oregon landscape, but be prepared for the crowds. It was a beautiful sight to see. Next time I go back I’d like to do some more hiking. If you have recommendations please leave them in the comments!
I am obsessed with Linda and Paul Jones’ book Alimentari. They share their tried and true family recipes, most of which have been on the menu at their deli since the day it opened. Their recipes are healthy, fresh and packed with flavor. Below I’m walking you through one of my favorites; Pan Fried Salmon with Tahini Dressing and Walnut Tarator.
This recipe is adapted from Alimentari by Linda and Paul Jones.
Get the book here: https://amzn.to/2KGH09i
Pre heat the oven to 320F. Take your salmon out of the refrigerator at least 10 mins before you're ready to cook it. This will result in a more evenly cooked piece of fish.
Whisk together the crushed garlic and salt, next add the yogurt and tahini. Once combined add the lemon juice. Depending on the quality of tahini you use the mixture may seize and become very thick. Add the warm water a tablespoon at a time until the dressing is loose and pourable. Give it a taste, you may need to add a little more salt or lemon juice.
In a small bowl combine the chopped walnuts, fresh herbs, and sliced chilis. Dress with the lemon juice, olive oil and a pinch of salt. Set aside until ready to use.
Pre heat a cast iron pan on med-high heat. Add avocado oil to the pan, season the salmon with salt and place skin side down, cook for three minutes. Transfer the pan to the oven for another 4 minutes.
Add the butter to the pan. Spoon the butter over the salmon until it is melted and golden brown. Transfer the salmon to a paper towel to drain.
Pour a little bit of the tahini dressing onto the plate. Top with a piece of salmon. Garnish with the walnut tarator.
These crispy little tartlets are perfect to serve at a summer cocktail party. Squash blossoms are starting to make appearances at grocery stores so keep and eye out!
Use a small cookie cutter to cut out circles in the cauliflower crust. Bake for 12mins at 375. This can be done ahead of time and stored in an air tight container until you're ready to assemble.
Stir the garlic into the ricotta. Season with salt and pepper.
Remove the blossoms from their stems and sauté in olive oil until lightly browned. Remove from the pan, and transfer them to a paper towel to drain off any excess oil. Season with salt and pepper.
To assemble the tartlets: place a dollop of the ricotta mixture onto each cauliflower circle. Top with a piece of squash blossom and a sprinkle of chives. These can be served room temperature and go great with a glass of wine!
I love serving this chilled soba salad with roasted salmon, fresh cilantro, basil and sesame seeds. The dressing is super versatile and can be tossed with greens or used as a dip on your next crudite board!
Whisk together the miso, garlic and tahini, then add in the sesame oil, soy sauce and rice vinegar.
Add the water a little at a time to thin out the dressing to a pourable consistency. You may not need all of it, or you may need more.
Toss the chilled soba noodles with the dressing. They are delicious as is however feel free to add shredded carrots, sesame seeds, fresh herbs seared tuna or roasted salmon.
I've been making shrimp a lot recently for a few reasons; first off it's pretty cheap as far as fish goes and second, it cooks in less than ten minutes making it the perfect option for dinner that needs to be on the table fast! I like to leave the shells on, it reminds me of eating peel + eat shrimp back in Maryland, you can remove them though for a less mess at the table.
Pre heat oven to 400
Toss the shrimp with the garlic, olive oil, chili paste zest and salt, then lay them out on a large baking tray.
Bake 6-8mins until they turn bright pink and are firm to the touch. Squeeze the juice from one lemon over the shrimp and serve immediately.
I like to serve them with lemon wedges, chimichurri sauce and a good crusty baguette!
Chimichurri recipe here: https://leighhyattanderson.com/2018/03/09/chimichurri/
Hummingbird cake is a southern classic. This is my lightened up version using coconut sugar, spelt flour and fresh pineapple and banana. The best part? You only need a bowl and a wooden spoon. No heavy mixer or special equipment. Fewer dishes = more time to enjoy you cake.
Bake for 40-50 min. The cake is done when it's firm to the touch or when a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean.
With a sturdy metal whisk or a wooden spoon whisk together all of the frosting ingredients until fluffy and evenly combined. Spread the frosting on top of the cooled cake and garnish with extra chopped nuts or a sprinkle of cinnamon.