Classic Gazpacho


Gazpacho has become my go-to summer soup.

I love picking the vegetables from my garden and then mixing them up in a blender and serving the soup cold.  It’s truly hassle-free.  I’ve experimented with many different flavorful varieties over the years:  Mango Gazpacho (our family fave), Almond and White Grape Gazpacho, Cucumber Avocado Gazpacho, Spicy Gazpacho, and Watermelon Gazpacho.  However, I now realize that I’ve never posted a simple recipe for Classic Gazpacho.

I asked out resident soup expert, Seriously Soupy, to share her celebrated Classic Gazpacho.  Serena, aka Seriously Soupy, started making soups as a creative outlet for herself after her first daughter was born.  Since she started, she has given soup tours and taught soup classes and has a catalog of over 100 soups on the site!  You can join Serena on her Soupy journey at and twice a month you can find her here, at My Judy the Foodie, sharing her wisdom and helping demystify the world of soup.

Here’s what Serena has to say: [Read more...]

Kale Salad with Dates, Almonds & Citrus Dressing


Your meals for summertime should hopefully reflect the season: light and airy, bursting with JOY and supreme flavor.

Or, at least that was my goal this summer for my meals. And, so far, I’ve stuck to that mantra. Since I have been cooking for one these past few weeks while my kids are off at camp, I’ve been trying to make dishes are equally tasty for lunch and dinner and can be served as left overs the next day.

Last summer, we fell in love with the Kale Salad with Ricotta and Plums. I think I served it at least once a week.

Yesterday I picked a bunch of ready-to-eat lacinto kale from my garden(!!) and I immediately wanted to make a fresh salad. I’ve only cooked with curly kale so I was thrilled to try a new variety. You might know Lacinto kale by its other monikers at your local farm stands and stores: dino kale, black kale, or cavolo nero. Like all other varieties, it’s an incredibly hearty cooking green with dark with a recognizable nutty flavor but, it also boasts myriad health benefits too; it’s rich in many vitamins: Vitamin A, vitamin B-6, β-carotene, lutein and zea-xanthin and on and on.

I found a Kale and Quinoa recipe over at my fave food blog: The Kitchn. I loved everything about- the incorporation of dates and almonds drizzled with a light and tangy citrus dressing. While I didn’t have any red quinoa on hand, I knew that brown rice could be a decent substitute.

Oh my.

The combination of the sweet caramelized onions and the sweet dates juxtaposed with crunch of the slivered almonds is like the perfect storm. Add in some kale and rice and it’s perfection.

But, it’s not over. The citrus dressing is quite unique due to the combination of the Clementine (or mandarin) juice and the maple syrup.

I’m thrilled that I have another easy salad to add to our summer rotation. And, surprisingly, it tasted just as good for left overs on day two.

So, what are you waiting for? Get your kale on and try it.

Happy summer.



La Cocina- Cultivating Food Entrpreneurs


One of my favorite spots in San Francisco is the Ferry Building.  I adore weaving my way through the Farmer’s Market stalls as well as the shops large and small that celebrate food in all its forms.   From restaurants to cafes, artisanal cheeses to fresh local fish, the quality and cultural diversity of San Francisco is on display.

But, my favorite aspect to the Ferry Building is the gathering of local farmers, producers, and independently owned and operated food businesses and the customers they serve.

I sampled meat rubs and olive oils, cheeses and cocoas and even a first-time snack of Chocolate Covered Crickets!

don bugito dobugito3

Yes, you heard me correctly. And the chocolate covered crickets tasted like chocolate rice crispy treats.  While I didn’t taste the chocolate worms, apparently they are spongy and not crunchy, like chocolate-covered gummi worms.


Where did I eat these samples?

la cocina logo

Well, I spent a lot of time talking to the people from La Cocina, a kitchen incubator for artisan producers.  La Cocina’s goal is to cultivate low income food entrepreneurs as they formalize and grow their businesses by providing affordable commercial kitchen space, industry-specific technical assistance and access to market opportunities.  Their focus is primarily [Read more...]

Black Bean Power Salad

black bean salad

For the first time since becoming a parent 12 years ago, I’m officially an empty nester!  Both of my kids shipped off to sleep away camp last week and I’ve been walking past their empty bedrooms with the deepest sense of longing.  Now I know how my parents must’ve felt every summer.  And, I was a lifer at camp, having gone away 9 straight summers.

I still can’t believe [Read more...]

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