Roasted Carrot & Blood Orange Salad

I don’t think I’ve had blood oranges since this salad, and let me tell you, they are sweeter and redder than ever this year. And I’m afraid there are some beans to be spilled. So here goes my Sunday confession…

I ate half the oranges while cutting them for this salad. But that’s not all. I also ate half the roasted carrots before they went in the salad. The oranges were juicy and the carrots spiced and crunchy, and well…, I couldn’t resist.

Luckily there was enough left to make the salad. I added some spinach and tossed everything in a simple vinaigrette. It was fantastic with burgers. I will definitely be making it again, even after blood orange season is over. I think orange oranges with orange carrots will be pretty together as well.

Continue Reading…

Moroccan Jam Cookie Sandwiches

Typically cut into rounds, these biscuits à la confiture can also be shaped into stars, leaves or any design imaginable. Hearts for Valentine’s Day would be oh so pretty.

The cookies themselves are sheer buttery comfort, but when filled with jam, they’re elevated to pure bliss. I remember how I loved them as a child; they were part of every holiday. Children and grown-ups alike get so excited about this beloved classic.

Continue Reading…

Broccoli Pancakes

Good morning all! I just finished cooking these pancakes and came rushing to post them. I couldn’t wait to share them with you. My kitchen is still messy and I have to go back to bake chocolate chip cookies and clean up. I have a picnic planned for Maya and her girlfriends and am trying to get everything ready this morning.

I’ll keep this post short. Enjoy the recipe. It’s tasty and great for brunch or picnic. I hope you make it soon.



Other pancake recipes:
Moroccan Pancakes: Baghrir
Gluten-Free Quinoa Flake Pancakes
Egg-Free Brown Rice Pancakes

Continue Reading…

Simple Lentil Stew

Last week brought the first real cold front we’ve had in Florida this year, and I loved it. I got to eat breakfast in my mom’s old wool robe, and whenever I crossed the doorstep I was exuberantly primed with my boots, sweater, fleece jacket and fluffy bright orange scarf. Cold weather is exciting as long as it doesn’t last more than a few weeks. Beyond that, I start daydreaming about picnics and carefree bike rides in shorts and a tank top.

When temperatures drop below sixty, I find few foods more satisfying than lentils. A simple stew like this one is easy to make, hearty and most importantly,very tasty. Make some and have yourself a warm bowl, or make a large batch and have many meals taken care of.

P.S. You may also like these:
Stewed Red Lentils with Cumin and Lime
Red Lentil and Sausage Soup
Lentil Salad

Continue Reading…

Mint, Lime & Celery Juice

It’s been a busy couple of weeks, and I am finally coming up for air. Hello, World.

I wish I could say I’ve been busy cooking new dishes but I can’t. I actually haven’t been eating as much as I’ve been drinking. I’ve been replacing a few meals with freshly made juices trying to shed those stubborn last couple of post-baby pounds. The good news is I can fit into my jeans again. The bad news is they’re still tight.

There hasn’t been anything special going on but the daily chores seem to be never-ending. I could blame it on the demanding nature of caring for a newborn but the truth is I would have been busy regardless. I am good at being busy. I’ll even say that I’m skilled at it. But I’m learning to prioritize and my to-do-list is starting to look shorter and more realistic. A to-do-list will swallow you up if you let it.

When I was invited to the pre-opening party of Siro, I put everything aside and went. I thought it would be great to get out, be around adults and talk about our common interest in food. Siro is a  farm-to-table urban Italian restaurant located in Orlando’s World Center. It is a good forty-five minute drive from where I live, but it was totally worth it. The food was so fabulous and I got to meet some really amazing people. The best part was touring the kitchen! For someone who has never waitressed, let alone been in a professional kitchen, that was an exciting experience.

Continue Reading…

Yogurt Lamb and Pea Tagine

It’s been a while since I’ve made a tagine. The chicken tray bake with olives and preserved lemons that I made a few months ago is probably the closest thing I’ve eaten in a long while. Needless to say, I missed it. A lot. A quasi tagine-less winter is a first for me, I must say, but between the birth of a baby and a persistent post-partum sweet tooth, I’m hoping you’ll forgive me. Will you?

It is not pea season where I live but since I don’t mind frozen vegetables, this was hardly a problem. Peas, especially, seem to remain sweet, tender and full of flavor despite a long ice coma. Pea season in Florida is supposed to start in late January but I haven’t seen any in the market yet. As soon as they appear I feel that spring is almost here even though we’re still smack dab in the middle of winter. Peas are magical like that. I think it’s the color.

I was a little bit adventurous with this particular tagine. I made it with yogurt, which is not quite the usage. Along with lemon it yielded a fresh tangy sauce that accentuated the peas and livened up the sauce. It was lovely.

Continue Reading…

Meatballs with Yogurt Sauce for The Boston Globe

These flavorful meatballs are a great choice for an easy dinner or cocktail party. The creamy yogurt sauce adds a nice cooling contrast making the meatballs light and fresh. Serve them with a side of cucumber, radish and tomato slices or turn them into sandwiches by serving them on gyro bread.

Here is the recipe.


Gluten-Free Couscous


I haven’t been this excited about stumbling across an ingredient since my ras el hanout find. Thoughts of gluten-free couscous have crossed my mind many times but I wasn’t sure it existed and have never actively sought it. When I saw the Lundberg Brown Rice Couscous at the store I thought I should try it and share my experience with you.

Continue Reading…

Chestnut Cream Eclairs

We hosted Christmas dinner this year. John’s family came over for a couple of days and his mom cooked a very festive dinner as she does every year. Last year’s dinner was chocolate themed, a couple of years ago it was all Star Trek. I cooked dinner the first night they arrived. I made mustard chicken with couscous and a simple cucumber salad.

And of course there had to be dessert. I made chestnut cream puffs.

There aren’t any left. I guess everybody loves cream puffs. They are true crowd pleasers. And who wouldn’t love tiny airy pastries filled with creamy goodness!

The next best thing to having marrons glacés for Christmas is probably the Clément Faugier chestnut spread. It tastes exactly like pureed candied chestnuts. I bought it for myself as a Christmas gift and decided I should make something with it for everybody to enjoy. It is already sweetened and flavored with vanilla so all it needed was a quick whipping with mascarpone to make a lovely filling for the éclairs.

Ever made pâte à choux? It may sound like a fancy French word but it is very approachable. This recipe is so easy and great to keep handy for making those dainty choux à la crème (round, cabbage-shaped puffs), éclairs (oblong puffs), gougères, croquembouches and much much more.

Continue Reading…

Chilled Cranberry Spice Soup

Ah the short days with early darkness. They need a color lift.

A splash of pink in the middle of the winter.

A fresh and bright cranberry yogurt soup with a hint of spice to keep with the holiday spirit. Just what a winter table might need.

Continue Reading…