Pickled Veggie Relish


Have you ever been to a really good Mexican restaurant where they bring you those amazing pickled carrots with jalapenos?  Yeah, they’re pretty amazing.  We’ve even posted on this before from our good friend and chef Alejandro!  We had a bunch of veggies that were getting pretty sad, so instead of being wasteful we re-purposed them in to this incredible relish.  We tossed this in to a fresh salad in lou of dressing, topped it on to some baked cod and added it like giardinera to a sandwich!  It’s very versatile and packed with flavor.  The recipe below is a loose version of what we did, use what you have on hand for vegetables- we used carrots, celery, onion, sweet mixed peppers and cilantro.

Recipe/ Directions

2-3 cups vegetables, carrots/ celery/ onion/ peppers

4-6 garlic cloves, rough chop or whole

1/2 cup chopped cilantro, optional

1/2 cup apple cider vinegar

1/2 cup rice wine vinegar

1-2 cups water

1 teaspoon coriander seeds

1/2 tsp salt and pepper, to taste

1.) Chop your vegetables to bite size or relish size pieces ( however you’d like to eat them!)

2.) Place all vegetables, garlic, cilantro, vinegars and coriander, salt and pepper in to a large saucepan, add enough water to cover everything.

3.) Bring the pan to a boil, then reduce heat and cook for about 5 more minutes.

4.) Once cooled slightly, put in to Ball jars to store in the refrigerator, And they’ll keep for about 3 months.


Baby Food | how to


This blog is about food, pictures of beautiful food, for food, and all things food- enter BABY FOOD.  Knox has been eating solids for 2 months now, and if you know us at all, I hope you know we have been making everything he eats at home.  Jason and I don’t eat every meal out of a jar, so why would we feed our baby out of a jar, am I right?  I was pretty excited to start making this little guy’s food, he was practically begging for each bite we put in our mouths when we were eating in front of him- poor guy!  I can’t wait till we can just serve him what we’re eating each night, for now we make him his own fruit and veggies purees and combos!  He’s actually inspired us to eat better again, I swear since pregnancy we’ve been spoiling our sweet tooth and ourselves with decadent meals, pizza and the like.  This week we made a great meal plan and have stuck to it.  We do a Sunday food prep as long as we’re home, where I baked sweet potatoes, regular potatoes, roasted acorn squash, washed and packed baggies of grapes, boiled chicken for southwest style wraps ( packaged beans/ shredded cheese/ avocado/ made brown rice with Salsa), baked bacon ( for loaded potatoes), boiled whole wheat pasta and threw together a backed ziti with zucchini slices, and of course made some fruits for Knox.

I do mega batches 1-2 times per month and so far he’s had: apples, pears, acorn squash, butternut squash, cantaloupe, peas, green beans, avocado, sweet potato, parsnips, prunes.  It’s been pretty easy, I’ll do 2 fruits and 2 veggies all at the same time by steaming the sliced fruits in a saucepan with a touch of water and a lid at the same time the squash or potatoes are cooking/ roasting in the oven.  As one item finishes cooking I toss it in the food processor.  For the apple and pears, I remove the skin after it’s steamed and cool- it’s just easier and you don’t lose as much fruit.   Once each item is blended, I pour/ plop it in to an ice cube tray, cover with plastic wrap and freeze.  Once frozen I transfer the cubes to a labelled bag and store in the freezer.  To serve, I place 1-2 cubes ( mix and match!) and microwave in a small bowl with 10-20 second intervals till just warm and smooth.  I’ll stir in some milk to thin it out if necessary, add in rice powder for extra calories.


photo source

Knox’s favorite, as an example Acorn Squash!

2 acorn squash


To start, wash the acorns, cut in half then place face down in a rimmed pan lined with foil ( I drizzle with EVOO), bake for 35 minutes @400 degrees.  When cool, scoop out soft flesh in to your food processor and blend until smooth, adding liquid gradually (and adding more if needed to purée). Then pour into freezer cubes and store in freezer.


Suggested Combos:
Sweet Potato and Apple

Apple and Cinnamon

Pear and Parsnips

Acorn Squash and Rice

Peas and Sweet Potato

Cantaloupe and Yogurt

Peaches and Cream ( mommy’s milk)


Mexican Style Mussels

20130506-092611.jpgHappy Cinco de Mayo!  We should’ve grilled out buuuuuut instead we spent the afternoon planting our raised garden beds and wanted to keep it simple for dinner- enter Mexican Mussels!  Perfect fast easy dinner, delicious served with very good sliced bread.  Mussels were $4.99/ lb ( at WHOLE FOODS!) so these are also budget friendly.  Here is a great link on how to clean your mussels and also make sure that you aren’t eating bad ones.  This recipe is an original so let us know what you think- we loved every last slurped soaked bead bite.

1.25 lbs mussels, cleaned and sorted

1/2 cup chopped shallots

4 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 sup chopped red pepper

4 tablespoons butter

1.5 cups dry white wine

1/4 cup cream

2 tablespoons lemon juice

salt and pepper to taste

4 ounces chorizo

1/2 cup cilantro, chopped

1 baguette, sliced

Avocado for the side

In a large dutch oven style pan, heat your butter over medium high heat.  Saute the shallots, garlic and red pepper for about 5 minutes.  Add in the wine and let cook for about 6 minutes.  While that cooks, in another pan cook your chorizo through breaking it up in to bits.  Transfer to a paper towel lined plate and set aside.  Once the wine is cooked out, add in the mussels, chorizo, 1/4 cup of the cilantro and salt and pepper.  Place the lid on your pan and cook mussels gently shaking the pan to coat with the sauce.  They are cooked fully when they pop open; about 4-5 minutes total.  Remove from heat, squeeze lemon juice on top, the cream ( if desired) and the rest of the cilantro, season with more salt to taste.  Serve hot with sliced baguette and avocado.


Beautiful Day, Beautiful Food






20130430-195314.jpgLook who got Instagram!  The filters and quality of images is a lot of fun to do quick pictures of our food on the fly rather than setting up a studio every time we want to document.  Obviously those pictures are much better, but then we blog less!  There’s no real recipe here, just inspiration to get outside and grill.  We made guacamole  fresh salsa and grilled chicken tacos with fresh cilantro and green onion.  Check out this post for fresh salsa with the grill



Latin Spiced Chicken in Lettuce Cups

In our new issue of Food and Wine, they had top chefs contribute their all time favorite recipes.  Asian lettuce wraps are pretty incredible so when we saw Bill Telepan’s Latin spiced chicken, which marinates for 4 hours with some of our very favorites spices, then it is served in perfect portion sized lettuce cups with a crunchy and fresh slaw, we gave it a try! The down point where this recipes loses that umf is removing all the great flavors with the skin… but you also don’t want to have hunks of chicken leg skin in your light fresh cups.  So what we did is added a little extra salt and pepper to the shredded chicken to make up for he loss.  You can also squeeze more fresh lime juice over your cups before serving.  Enjoy

Contributed by Bill Telepan


  1. 1 tablespoon chile powder
  2. 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  3. 3 garlic cloves, minced
  4. 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
  5. 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  6. 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  7. 6 whole chicken legs (about 4 1/2 pounds)—excess fat trimmed, skin scored
  8. 1 pound Savoy cabbage, finely shredded (8 cups)
  9. 1/2 small red onion, very thinly sliced
  10. 2 jalapeños, seeded and minced
  11. 3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  12. 16 large Boston lettuce leaves
In a small bowl, combine 1 tablespoon each of salt and pepper with the chile powder, oregano, garlic, orange juice and 2 tablespoons each of the lime juice and olive oil. Put the chicken legs on a large rimmed baking sheet and coat all over with the spiced oil. Cover and refrigerate for 4 hours.
Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine the remaining 1/4 cup each of lime juice and olive oil. Add the cabbage, onion, jalapeños and cilantro. Season the slaw with salt and pepper and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 5 hours, tossing occasionally.
Preheat the oven to 400°. Roast the chicken legs skin side up for about 40 minutes, until browned and cooked through. When cool enough to handle, discard the skin and bones and shred the chicken.
Arrange the lettuce on a platter and fill with the chicken; top with the slaw and serve.

Roasted Tomato Salsa

6 Plum Tomatoes
2 Garlic Cloves
1 bunch of Cilantro
2 Limes
1 Small Red Onion (or whatever onion you have)
2 Serrano Peppers
1 tbs EVOO
2tsp Kosher salt
a few cracks of fresh ground pepper

Place the tomatoes in an oven safe dish and place in the broiler.  Broil until blackened and soft.  Quarter when done.
Roughly chop the onion and the peppers, crush and peel the garlic.  Then add all three to a hot pan with the EVOO.  Saute just until soft and fragrant.
Add all of the ingredients together in a good blender or food processor and pulse until combined.  Add extra salt and lime to taste.


Flank Steak Taco Dinner with Friends

How can you not love summer- grilling out, warm sunshiny days and eating outside with good friends and good food after a day at the beach?  We had picked up a really nice looking flank steak at the butcher and decided it would be perfect on the grill and in a taco, along with grilled tomato salsa and sweetened grilled plantains… and mojitos!  Grilling the tomatoes gives this salsa a warm smoky heat, so savory and full of fresh flavor- it’s incredible.  Plantains are starchy, like a potato, but we treated them as a dessert- melted butter and brown sugar scented with vanilla.  We didn’t cook ours long enough, so you will want to make sure these are tender because the flavors were certainly showing up to party!  A quick rub of spices on the flank steak really punches up the savory taco.  So for your next BBQ as these last long days whittle down, please give this combo a try:
Roasted Tomato Salsa
6 roma (plum) tomatoes
2 cloves garlic, unpeeled
1/2 small onion, quartered
1 jalapeno chile pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Start the Grill.  In a medium bowl, place roma (plum) tomatoes toss with a drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper.   Transfer to the grill when it is hot and ready, checking often, grill 5 to 10 minutes, or until outsides of tomatoes are charred.  Remove vegetables from heat. Remove and discard tomato cores.  In a food processor, coarsely chop the remaining ingredients.  Transfer to a medium bowl and serve with extra lime juice and cilantro.

Flank Steak

2 lb flank steak
1 tablespoon ground mustard
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/4 teaspoon allspice
Preheat a grill pan over high heat for 3 to 4 minutes. Combine the mustard, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, cayenne and allspice in a small bowl. Rub the flank steak all over with the mix and let sit for 10 minutes.  Put the steak on the hot grill and cook 5 minutes per side. Remove and let rest 10 minutes before slicing.
1/2 cup dark rum
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
Pinch salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
2 very ripe plantains (should be almost black), peeled and sliced horizontally and then in half 
1 Tablespoon canola oil
Heat grill to high. Place rum, brown sugar, vanilla and salt in a small saucepan and cook until the sugar has melted and the mixture reduces and thickens slightly. Stir in butter until melted. Remove from the heat.
Brush plantains with oil on both sides and grill until golden brown and caramelized, about 3 to 4 minutes per side. Brush with the glaze during the last few minutes of grilling. Remove from the grill and brush with more of the glaze before serving.
makes 8 cocktails
2 cups sugar
1 cup water
8 ounces light rum
1 cup tonic water
16 limes, juiced
2 cups fresh mint

TO MAKE THE SIMPLE SYRUP WITH MINT: In a saucepan, mix together the sugar and water and heat over medium-high heat. Let the syrup cook for a couple of minutes or until the sugar dissolves and the syrup looks clear. This will be about the time it takes for the syrup to begin to bubble. Remove from the heat and add the mint leaves. Cover and set aside for about 10 minutes, so the mint can infuse the syrup. Strain the syrup and use immediately or store in a lidded container for up to 1 week.
TO MAKE THE PITCHER OF MOJITOS: In a large pitcher, stir together the rum, lime juice, and syrup. Add half the mint leaves and using a wooden spoon muddle the leaves. Serve at once or refrigerate until needed. Do NOT add ice to the pitcher.

TO SERVE: When ready to serve, squeeze a lime wedge over the ice in a rocks glass. Drop the lime wedge into the glass along with a few fresh mint leaves. Fill the glass two-thirds full of the mojito mixture and top off with club soda.