Thistle Change You {Giveaway}featured

Life is all about balance. So, while there are definite occasions for stick to your ribs ribs and phatty chocolate cake, and all the ice cream…there are also times to go a little lighter, a little cleaner.

I’ve been trying get more greens into my daily diet and making an effort to do a “paleo mindful” / “whole 30 weekday” thing (Oh gawd, have I become an SF foodie parody of myself? Maybe, but at least I’ll be a parody that glows from the inside out from all my newfound phytonutrients). Limiting the dairy and upping the veggies have been challenging — good thing I have friends who can make it easier.

Enter Thistle, purveyors of health and happiness in the form of juice and superfood-filled meals. Thistle specializes in plant-based meals using only fresh, organic ingredients sourced from local farms. Delicious and nutritious, and delivered right to my door! That’ll work for me.

More »

Vietnamese Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps (Sous Vide/Slow Cooker)featured

Pulled pork gets a Vietnamese makeover with an umami-rich marinade of hoisin, fish sauce, and a punch of sriracha, mixed together with caramelized onions, aromatic ginger, garlic, and sesame oil. Low and slow is the name of the game when it comes to transforming a humble cut of pork shoulder into something marvelously tender and juicy. You can achieve this in the slow cooker, as per the NYT (the inspiration behind this recipe), or you can break out the sous vide!

I tried both. Both were wonderful, but I did prefer the sous vide version. A 24-hour sous vide treatment renders the pork meltingly tender – it literally falls apart with the prod of a fork. It then gets sprinkled with brown sugar and blasted under the broiler to mimic that charred sweetness reminiscent of true Vietnamese street food eats. BYO little red stool.

More »

Roasted Strawberry Pavlova Cake with Coconut Creamfeatured

Last week I shared this recipe for Balsamic Roasted Strawberries, and promised you a special dessert making good use of them…well here she is! This Roasted Strawberry Pavlova Cake is the loveliest of lovelies.

You’ll typically see pavlovas as a single serving kind of dessert. Named after the Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova, probably because the cloud-like meringue shell resembles a poofy tutu, pavlovas are one of my favorite desserts. Light yet luxurious, and a textural delight.

While you can certainly adapt this recipe to make individual pavlovas, I decided to go big and made a cake version! This pavlova cake is constructed of four layers of crisp vanilla meringue that give way to a soft chew. In between you’ll find swoops of whipped coconut cream swirled with jammy balsamic roasted strawberries and a bright strawberries sauce. Piled on top are fresh plump strawberries and coconut chips.

More »

Balsamic Roasted Strawberriesfeatured

Strawberries are back!!!

Spring has sprung, and while the re-appearance of fava beans and asparagus is exciting, it doesn’t hold a candle to the sight of strawberries at the market again!

Juicy, sweet, and intoxicatingly fragrant, pick up a few baskets of these beauties this weekend and after you’ve popped enough of them into your mouth as is, roast them.

But first toss them in a touch of sugar, a splash of balsamic, vanilla, and a pinch of salt and pepper. I know it sounds weird. But trust. Especially on the pepper part. It adds just the slightest hint of something unexpected, and when you put it all together, it’s just lovely.

Roasting the strawberries concentrates all that sweet goodness into deep, jammy flavor.

More »