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Tomato & Olive Frittata

March 24, 2012

I love frittatas. They’re super easy to make and allow an endless amount of creativity to be had. If you’re just learning how to move a skillet around or practicing your egg skills, or simply want to fix something super fast and super yummy — turn to a frittata for a simple solution!

Basically, a frittata is beaten eggs you never fold or flip or anything. It cooks in the skillet and slides out of the skillet, no fuss no foul. You can even eat the thing out of the skillet or slice and serve from there. I made this one the other day. I felt like practically DRINKING some black olives but I figured I’d act like a civilized human being and prepare them in something proper. Here’s my recipe:

Tomato & Olive Frittata

6 large eggs
1 tbsp butter (I use Earth Balance Vegan Butter
2 oz. black olives, sliced (drained if from a can)
1 small tomato, diced (peeled or unpeeled is up to you. I like the peel).
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
Olive Oil drizzle
Bunch cilantro for garnish

First, we mise en place!

This is how I dice my tomatoes. You can also follow these additional steps to peel before you dice. Reserve.

I used a small can of thinly sliced black olives but you are more than welcome to use whatever kind of black olive you enjoy, such as those that come whole in a jar. Just slice them as thin as you feel comfortable. If they need to be pitted, be sure to take out and discard those pits. Reserve.

Crack six large eggs into a large non-reactive bowl. We’re mixing this in a non-reactive bowl because we’re working with something acidic — tomatoes! If you use something like aluminum to mix about your acidic dish, you’ll impart an unpleasant taste to your food. We don’t want to do that, do we? Use glass or ceramic, or stainless steel. I love my Pyrex bowls!

Beat VIGOROUSLY till eggs are completely broken down and frothy. The more air you beat into them, the fluffier they will be. Here is how to properly beat eggs. Remember to kinda come up as you move those eggs, and do it with gusto. It’s almost a lifting motion, NOT STIRRING.

Add heavy cream and beat till completely combined.

Add tomatoes and olives, and beat gently till incorporated.

Heat a non-stick skillet over med-low heat. Add butter and move around as it melts to fully coat the skillet, even up the sides. (*Note: You can use plain olive oil or any fat of your choice. I just love Earth Balance so I use it in most things. You can even use coconut oil, which gives everything the coolest taste)! Heat until butter is completely melted.

Add egg mixture. Swirl mixture in skillet till evenly distributed.

Cover and allow to cook for 10-12 mins. This will set the bottom and allow some steam action to fluff the frittata. From this stage, you can actually garnish and serve in wedges. Feeds 2-4 people.

Alternatively, you can allow the frittata to cook more. Place under a broiler or in a 375-degree pre-heated oven and continue to cook till done, (2-4 mins, or until the top browns for a broiler, about 5 mins. for a traditional oven).

I’ll be posting more frittatas soon! Just remember you can add more eggs for a thicker dish or fewer for thinner. Just keep in mind, your cooking times will need adjusting. Have fun with this!

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HAPPY 15th BIRTHDAY, SARA MARGOLIS !!!!

January 31, 2012

Sometimes, I wonder what I did in another life to deserve the cool, amazing friends I have. One such friend is Model Sara Margolis! We were chit-chatting the other day and I asked her if she had her birthday party planned yet. She said she hadn’t had one in years and I nearly fell outta my chair!

SO I THREW ONE! 😀

True to form, I cooked up a storm and aimed for special! I wanted these dishes to reflect a theme, showcase some of the stuff Sara has done, the places she has been and the whimsy in her personality.

#StuffSaraLikes = All things tropical! She’s a Vegetarian (Ovo-Lacto) so fruits and veggies are big. Sweets and sour surprises, too!

Sara told me a story about a vacation of hers where she, her brother and a friend flung a coconut off a hotel balcony till it busted on the concrete below. What a way to go! I bet that coconut’s coconut-pals still talk about how he met such an untimely demise! I decided to pay homage to that coconut — Otis the Coconut! — with a signature dish I called:

Sara’s Sweet & Sour Coconut/Lime Mousse w/ Sweet & Sour Mint Phyllo Chips

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Ole Otis here is stuffed with rich and fluffy yet light and bright coconut lime mousse, topped with lime zest and toasted coconut, served with phyllo chips and garnished with mint.

The sand is pulverized wafer cookies and graham crackers. The eyes are edible, too! :p

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These phyllo chips were so fun to make. I dusted them with citric acid and colored sprinkles! That citric acid is the stuff on Sour Patch Kids candies and Sour Skittles. They were a perfect pop to the decadent mousse.

A trick to get some lime taste in the chip itself was to make lime sugar! I infused confectioner’s sugar with lime zest. I let the sugar and zest sit together for an hour. Then, as I folded the phyllo pastry, I dusted the sugar between the layers to act as a bit of an adhesive during the baking process.

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Sara’s Sandcastle Retreat Cake

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This was wild! I had never made a sandcastle cake before. BUT! Sara enjoys tropical holidays. She sports enough beach pictures to fill an impressive travelogue! Besides that, “Sara” means “PRINCESS” in Hebrew. Sooo, I went with the theme and made our Princess a beach castle she can hide away in for some R&R. I dunno about that starfish, though. How did he get on the beach resort guest list? :O Looks suspicious!

I really wanted this to look like something someone made on the beach so I forwent using things like fondant and stuck with a spatula and my hands, instead!

This is a three-tier cake for 75. The bottom tier was a traditional white vanilla cake infused with guava and lime. The middle tier was my favorite — Strawberry and Chocolate swirl! It tasted exactly like Neopolitan ice cream! The top tier was a strawberry cream bundt cake.

Frosting! The top tier was frosted in a coconut-pecan glaze that gave the “sand” an awesome wet-sand look after application. The middle and bottom tiers were frosted in lemon/lime/orange zest infused buttercream.

The sand is a mixture of pulverized vanilla wafer cookies, graham cracker cookies and these gingersnap type things I bought. Those made the darker sand where I wrote “HAPPY BIRTHDAY SARA”!

I also bought the candy pearls sprinkled everywhere. 🙂 ~And the candles!

The shells, starfish and misfits invading Sara’s castle are all handmade with white chocolate. Very yummy!

The towers are, of course, ice cream cones — decorated! :p

Sara’s Facebook name is “Tweetie Bird” so I had to invite Tweety to the party!

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This is how cake was served. Here is my favorite of the three: a slice of strawberry/chocolate swirl atop strawberry cream and guava/ancho chili infused chocolate drizzle, decorated with pink and lavender sugar sprinkles — and served with a quenelle of mango sorbet. On top is a red candle with a red flame, a white chocolate sea shell and one of the cookie “castle battlements.”

The sweets didn’t stop there! Considering Sara turned FIFTEEN and TAYLOR SWIFT wrote a song called FIFTEEN, it stood to reason to make some T-Swizzle inspired treats!

Taylorific Orange Infused Cheesecake w/ Raspberry Puree

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Taylor (I call her Tayters!) has said her favorite food is cheesecake. Nothing easier, more fun or yummier than that! This is an orange infused cheesecake with graham cracker crust, served on a bed of raspberry puree w/ an orange peel twirl, orange zest & mint leaf garnish. Decadent, silky, lovely!

Parmesan Dusted Sara Tots w/ Horseradish Vegenaise Dip

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TAYTER TOTS! Growing up, that was Taylor’s nickname and what I still call her. FOR THE OCCASION, though, I believe we can call these “SARA TOTS!” :p These are Yukon Gold potato “Sara Tots” dusted with Parmesan cheese and pepper, served with a luscious Vegenaise and horseradish dip. For any of you who want to cut down on the mayo, definitely go out and get some Vegenaise! It’s great and better for you!

Sarastrone Soup

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This is my traditional recipe for minestrone soup. I like fixing it vegan-style, and fully embrace the bean broth as the base of this hallmark dish. The incorporation of the shell pasta ties into Sara’s beach-themed gala, and that makes it SARASTRONE instead of minestrone!  ;p

Saravera Primavera Martini

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This was good! This is a medley of kale, watercress, baby asparagus tips, PAPAYA (omg yum), Korean garlic-chili sauce and quinoa spaghetti noodles quickly sauteed in sesame oil. Once in the martini glass, I drizzled a very clean celery/onion broth with a hint of low sodium soy sauce over it all, garnished with a scallion curl and fresh flat leaf parsley — AND PAPAYA PEPPER! NEVER throw away your papaya seeds! All you have to do is soak them, husk them, dry them and grind them! Then, you have the healthiest “pepper” you could ever hope to find!

FYI, I no longer use any other pasta but the quinoa stuff! Quinoa is a real super food. The health benefits are astounding!

The Princess Sara (Cocktail)

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Can’t have a party without a cocktail!

I made two versions of this; one for the under-21s (like our birthday girl! :p ) that was just as delicious as the one for us over-21s. This cocktail is inspired by the traditional red tea from South Africa, Rooibos Tea, and fuses some tropical influences into it with crushed mint (mojito style!) and fresh mango juice — and rum! I used coconut rum. :p

Sara said one of her favorite fruits is mango so this recipe felt natural. Rooibos is SO good for you! See here. I served this in a glass that could facilitate four Lite Cubes for the neon rave effect you see pictured. All garnished with fresh mint!

So, basically, smush a mint leaf at the bottom of the glass. Removal of the deceased leaf is optional. Lite Cubes go in. Then, start building! 3 parts mango juice, 2 parts Rooibos tea, rum to fill, mint garnish. Enjoy!

SARA! I pity people who don’t know you. You have an uncanny essence & energy that lights up any room and turns any frown upside down. I’m SO thankful we met because I firmly believe that, to make the most of life, we must surround ourselves with bright, ambitious, successful people who keep the goal of living life to its fullest at the top of their to-do list — people like you. There are LOTS of people who love you — including me! — so never forget that the more you smile and the brighter you glow, the more people you’ll inspire around you, with everything you do. Just look at all the yummy treats you inspired me to make! :p

Cheers to this next round of your life! At fifteen, the party is just getting started!

Happy Birthday, Princess! ~(=^-^)= ♡♥♡♥♡♥

OH! And here’s the DJ we had! ~(=O_O)=

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And here she is after the feast! 🐱

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Recipes for all these will be posted soon on my upcoming Tumblr dedicated to my yummies. 🙂 Stay tuned!

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DOWNLOAD MOONGLOW FREE IN OCTOBER!

October 12, 2011


(art by Virginia Hilton, featured on MoonglowLove.com)

IT’S MY BIRTHDAY MONTH! That means, I’m in high spirits! To celebrate my birthday, I invite ALL of you to download my debut novel, MOONGLOW, entirely FREE during October! Here’s how:

Visit http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/62372 -Initiate purchase. You’ll be asked to register. Do so quickly. Next up, you’ll see a “coupon code” box. Enter LZ69G and complete checkout. You’ll be able to download MOONGLOW in any e-book format, absolutely FREE!

The best gift you can give me is your feedback! After having a read, sound off on MOONGLOW’s official site, Smashwords & Amazon.com‘s comments pages,  here on this blog, MOONGLOW’s blog, via e-mail, on Twitter or Tumblr — doesn’t matter. I just hope you enjoy what I’ve created! Even if you don’t, I’d love to hear from you! 😀

Thanks, everyone! Cheers!

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Birthday Goat, Birthday Flan

September 6, 2011

I know meaty fare has become quite rare around here lately but I took the liberty of fixing a special something for a special friend celebrating a birthday today, Sept. 6th!

Firstly, goat is an amazing protein to work with. Many don’t brave it because of its characteristic gaminess but, really, I don’t think it’s that gamey at all. Reguardless, to tame out that taste/scent, simply rinse your goat meat in lemon juice and/or use with lemon (or lime) and apple cider vinegar in your marinade ingredients. Marinade should take no less than an hour. Most prefer to marinade goat overnight. Your call.

For this recipe, I marinaded my goat in a puree of the following:

1/2 cup olive oil
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
4 garlic cloves
1 tsp. summer savory
2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp. fennel powder
generous handful cilantro
generous handful flat leaf parsley

Puree all ingredients in a blender . Set aside.

Your cuts of goat will determine how you marinade. I had a variety of hind, ribs and leg so I marinaded the lot of it in huge ziplock plastic bags. Put goat in the bag(s). Pour marinade in. Seal bag and manhandle the bags to evenly distribute the goods throughout your meat. Place in refrigerator no less than 1 hour, preferably over night. I marinaded for 4 hours.

When it’s time to cook, remove goat from fridge. Let come to room temperature on the counter. This allows the protein to spend its time cooking instead of having to heat up in the pan from a refrigerated state

Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees.

Heat skillet (cast iron is ideal) on stovetop. No need to add fat to the skillet since we’ll be searing with the marinade coating.

When water finger-sprinkled into the skillet rolls away and evaporates quickly, add goat. You know you’re doing great when you hear that SIZZLE! Get all sides of the goat to an attractive golden brown, about 8-10 minutes, all around. Remove meat to a prepared roasting tray, (foil lined works)

Roast in oven for 10-15 minutes for rare (as pictured). 20-25 minutes for medium rare. Longer for anything higher. :p

Remove from oven when done and allow to rest a good 10-15 minutes before carving.

That said, here’s what I paired the goat with!

First, I sauced the plate with a Tomatillo  sauce made from the following:

2 tomatillos, husked, rinsed (must rinse away that sticky residue).
1/2 large white onion
2 serano peppers, halved, deveined/seeded. (Leave veins in if you prefer more heat)
2 garlic cloves, halved

Toss tomatillos, onions, peppers & garlic in good olive oil with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Roast in the oven for about 20 minutes, or until tomatillos begin to blister.

Remove from oven. Transfer all veggies with any pan juice to a blender. To that, add:

Juice of 1/2 lime
1 tsp cumin
Handful cilantro
Handful flat leaf parsley

Puree. Test for seasoning. If happy, set aside till ready to plate.

For the orange droplets, that sauce was actually made from red tomatoes! Here’s how:

2 medium sized tomatoes, halved and sliced
1/2 large white onion, sliced
1 tbsp. good olive oil
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
pinch cumin
pinch sage
pinch red pepper flakes

Sweat onions and tomatoes. Saute till cooked down and juicy. Remove to blender and puree. Allow to cool a bit. Then, strain through sieve and/or cheesecloth. You will stay with the prettiest, silkiest sauce. Reserve till time to plate.

Next, let’s talk about mushrooms! I served a saute of baby portabellos (baby bellas) and sliced shallots beneath the goat. That was prepared like this:

8 oz. baby bella mushrooms, thick sliced
1 large shallot, halved and sliced
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp olive oil

Heat olive oil in skillet. Add shallots and mushrooms together and cover, instantly. Keep heat medium-ish to low and allow nature to do her thing. The veggies will sweat under that lid. After 5 minutes, uncover and check their progress. Agitate a bit but try not to stir everything too much. Just move it around a bit. Recover. Rinse/repeat till mushrooms and shallots are cooked down and surrounded in their own juice. Remove from heat and reserve till time to plate.

As for those white flecks! Those are a mixed dice medley of turnip and chayote squash!.

1/2 Chayote Squash
1 small turnip

Fine dice each. For presentation in this recipe, I mix-matched the fine dice to give plating an abstract art effect.

Steam dice for 30 minutes with fresh tarragon, dried summer savory and finish with a spray of lime to balance the culmination of the recipe with some acidity and tartness. Remove from steam and reserve till time to plate.

Garnish all this with some fresh, lemon sprayed alfalfa sprouts. Plate, serve, enjoy!

For dessert, I made a Prickly Pear infused Flan, topped with toasted coconut & toasted walnuts! I’ll post the recipe for this at a later date.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fun cooking for a fun friend. 🙂 Thanks so much for being who you are, Debs! Happy Birthday!

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Sardinas a la Mexicana

August 4, 2011

Here’s a quick, no-cook way to enjoy canned sardines an old Mexican way. Of course, this technique is not specific to Mexico. There are a variety of cultures that mash up sardines with veggies, especially in countries where means are thin and meals must be stretched to their greatest extents. Good thing about them sardines is they’re JAM PACKED with calcium! With these fresh vegetables, this is a very healthy dish.

My great grandparents (on both sides) were Mexican immigrants. On my mother’s side, her grandfather LOVED making this! He especially loved making it with her. As a little girl, no older than 8 or 9, she remembers peeking over the kitchen counter to watch her granddaddy, Tomas Zertuche, mash up a can of sardines and mix it up with fresh, vibrant vegetables. As I grew up, mom always made this for us as a snack. We just had this yesterday (hence, the pictures) and it brought back fond memories, as all “family recipes” do. :p No mater if it’s made from scratch or compiled like this, anything we share with people we love is special!

Mash up a can of sardines in tomato sauce. Dump a heap of diced cilantro, serano peppers, red onion over your mush. Additionally, you may add diced tomato, garlic, avocado and lemon or lime juice. But we like it just like this. And you may adjust the heat by adding or taking away serano peppers (or using different peppers. Your call). I used two — one green, one red because it was aged a bit.

Tomato sauce!

Dump that sauce alllllll over your mush! :p

Mix it all up w/ additional powdered comino (cumin) and freshly ground black pepper.

You can see the char marks on my tortillas. I love heating up a corn tortilla over the open stove flame. But you can heat them on an iron skillet, too. An outdoor grill rocks, too! Roll into fire roasted corn tortillas (or whatever tortilla you prefer) or use as chip dip and enjoy!

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Autumn Blues – Sasha Pivovarova, Hugo by Hugo Boss, A/W 2011-2012

July 6, 2011

 

Sasha Pivovarova & James Dornan in “Autumn Blues,” for Hugo by Hugo Boss, Autumn/Winter 2011-2012.

Images sourced from Fashion Gone Rogue.

Sasha — as always — is flawless here!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Doro, Norgie & Katrin!

July 6, 2011

A minimalist, sensual spread featuring some of my very favourite girls — Amanda Nørgaard, Dorothea Barth Jörgensen, and Katrin Thormann. I just about died when I saw this in my e-mail this morning. 🙂

Stockholm A/W 11
Photography: Kai Z. Feng
Styling: James Valeri

Sourced from TFS: Dorothea Barth Jörgensen – Page 18 – the Fashion Spot http://forums.thefashionspot.com/f52/dorothea-barth-j-rgensen-125457-18.html#ixzz1RL0BxG7m

 

 

 

 

 

 

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