Blackberry-Mint Lemonade

July 7, 2013
Blackberry-Mint Lemonade

Weekend in Chico aside, it’s been a very mild summer. Unlike last year, there hasn’t been a single day so far where I’ve felt like it’s too hot to go on living. No 100+ degree days with a billion percent humidity. No relentlessly sunny days without a hint of cloud cover. It’s actually been a pretty rainy summer, which you’d think that’d be a bad thing, but really – all that rain keeps our plants happy, and the rainstorms have been pretty great for heat and pollen management. I’m hoping that this mild summer continues, but Dan tells me that the Cali heatwave is supposed to be moving east soon. Ugh! I hope the rumors are wrong, but if they aren’t I have a...

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Lemonade Spritzers with Berry Ice Cubes

July 4, 2013
Lemonade Spritzers with Berry Ice Cubes

Last weekend Dan and I flew to Chico, CA for our friends’ Sarah and Lucas’s wedding. The ceremony was beautiful, the reception was amazing (Sarah is a DIY genius), and the BBQ was the best I’ve ever eaten. But, it was a little hot. Like…holy-crap-it’s-110-degrees-are-those-tears-or-are-my-eyeballs-sweating hot. Luckily, Lucas and Sarah are smart, and provided a seemingly endless supply of beverages for their guests. There were chilled bottles of water everywhere, limitless Sierra Nevada beers at the bar, and gallons of self-serve sweet tea and lemonade. Plenty of fluids to hydrate with before and after hitting the dance floor!  (Look at how well my balcony garden is doing!) Through out the wedding, Dan and I guzzled many, many glasses of pretty much anything we could get...

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No-Churn Strawberry Fudge-Swirl Ice Cream

July 3, 2013
No-Churn Strawberry Fudge-Swirl Ice Cream

Guys, it’s really hard to photograph ice cream. It’s not even that hot outside, but my scoops starting melting basically as soon as they hit the bowl. And while goopy, melted ice cream is delicious, that deliciousness doesn’t really translate well visually. Which is why you’re only getting one picture of this fabulous strawberry fudge-swirl ice cream. Can you tell how yummy it is from this picture? Can you taste the smooth, rich fudge on your tongue? Or the tart sweetness of ripe strawberries? No? Well then I guess you’ll just have to try this recipe yourself! Happy 4th of July, everyone!

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Korean BBQ Short Ribs (Kalbi)

June 25, 2013
Korean BBQ Short Ribs (Kalbi)

This post is dedicated to my friend Susan who, after months and months of promising to do guest posts of her family’s favorite Korean dishes, finally just sent me her mom’s Kalbi recipe so that I would stop harassing her while she was neck deep in finals and bar exam prep.  I still want to wrangle a guest post out of her (ahem, Susan are you reading this?), but since I got a delicious family recipe out of the bargain I’ll let it go…for now. I’ve made this dish several times since I got the recipe, and it’s quickly becoming one of our favorite things to eat when we’re in the mood for Asian food. The salty-sweet marinade is tongue-ticklingly delicious, and not only...

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GF Banana Bread With Crunchy Streusel Topping

June 11, 2013
GF Banana Bread With Crunchy Streusel Topping

Short post today, guys. Just wanted to let you know about this amazing banana bread I made this weekend. Moist and tender crumb, tons of delicious banana flavor, and topped with delightfully crunchy sweet streusel bits. It’s perfect for breakfast, as a snack, or…pretty much any time you want a delicious treat. And, did I mention that it’s totally gluten free? Yup. Using cup4cup flour, a special gluten free flour developed by the genius chefs at French Laundry, this recipe turned out exactly like a regular, non-GF banana bread — same texture and consistency, and none of the strange flavor or after-taste you sometimes get with rice or potato-based flours. Give it a try! You’ll love this, I promise.

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Chili Crab Deviled Eggs

June 3, 2013
Chili Crab Deviled Eggs

Have you ever noticed how people have really strong opinions about mayonnaise? It’s such an unassuming condiment, yet it incites so much passion in some people. For example, one of my friends at work would rather go hungry than eat the free sandwiches at our firm-sponsored lunch meetings when they come pre-slathered with mayo. Me? I think all sandwiches should have a little mayo in them. Just don’t come near me with that “salad dressing” crap. Miracle Whip? NOPE. That relishy-sweet tang is so strange, am I right? I think it’s pretty safe to say that, as far as mayonnaise goes, Hellmann’s has basically cornered the market. I know some Southerners prefer Duke’s, but I’ve never had any so I can’t speak to it’s...

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Fudgy GF Brownies

May 29, 2013
Fudgy GF Brownies

Happy belated Memorial Day, everyone! Did you guys have a good time? Dan and I went up to Massachusetts with my parents this weekend, and it was so much fun. Dan’s mom threw me an amazing bridal shower with awesome food, and I had a blast hanging out with my favorite ladies and opening all kinds of fabulous presents. One other major event from this weekend? My first wedding dress fitting session. So nerve-wracking, because the last time I tried on my dress it wouldn’t zip. It. Wouldn’t. Zip. Thanks to all my face-stuffing during the holiday season, I had gained a whole bunch of weight between the time I bought my dress and the day I picked it up from the store a...

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Garden Scramble

May 21, 2013
Garden Scramble

When I told Dan I wanted to go GF, his immediate reaction was confusion (what’s gluten?), followed closely by panic. Was this the end of his gluten eating days? No more bread? No more cookies? OMG, was I trying to starve him? No. I was not. In fact, we’ve been eating better than ever since I adopted a GF lifestyle. Since all of our old stand-by meals (delivery pizza, frozen dumplings, cheese/bread & crackers, etc.) are outside my diet, I’ve actually been cooking more lately. Which means fewer starchy, processed foods, and a whole lot more fresh veggies and lean protein. Between that and the new running regime, I think Dan and I are becoming…healthy fitness people. Yikes! As it turns out, there are lots of good...

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Single-Serving GF Chocolate Chip Mug Cookie

May 17, 2013
Single-Serving GF Chocolate Chip Mug Cookie

For the last two weeks, I’ve been going gluten-free. Not for health reasons — thinking back on the amount of wheat-packed bread and baked goods I’ve happily consumed over the years, I’m pretty positive I’m not allergic to gluten. No, this is all about vanity. It all started when I was griping to my friend Sarah about how all my healthy eating and exercising have lead to no noticeable results in the wedding-diet department. Sure, I looked more toned, but my clothes were still uncomfortably tight. Annoying. Teenage metabolism, why did you leave me? When I was finally done whining, Sarah told me (not for the first time) that I should try going gluten free like she did. She’s also currently on a campaign...

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Restaurant-Style Queso

May 4, 2013
Restaurant-Style Queso

If you’re going to drink a whole lot of margaritas, you definitely need a hearty, tasty snack or appetizer to go with them. My personal favorite is chips & dip. Crunchy, salty chips to cut through the tangy sweetness of the margaritas, and thick, creamy cheese sauce (or guacamole) to help those chips slide down real easy.  Since I made peach margaritas for early-Cinco de Mayo last week, it seemed appropriate to make queso for actual Cinco de Mayo. When  we go out for Mexican food, I actually tend to gravitate more towards guacamole than queso. But lately guacamole has become kind of a regular don’t-want-to-cook-real-food-for-dinner occurrence in our house, so I’m a little avocado’d out. Creamy, zesty cheese sauce is super delicious, though, and seemed...

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