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Cherry Ice Cream

Last year my Pops asked if I wanted to take ownership of the Ice Cream Maker of my childhood. Neglected for decades, but immediately familiar and loaded with fuzzy-good memories, I snapped it up. That same week, I made my first batch of ice cream with fresh cherries and it was amazing.

Later, I realized that I hadn’t written down the recipe. Last week, Mum and Pops brought be a big bag of freshly picked cherries and my first thought was of last year’s badass cherry ice cream. And so, with a great big deep breath, I dove in and attempted to recreate the best fresh cherry ice cream ever. Here’s the breakdown:

Very Cherry Ice Cream with Chocolate Chunks Read the rest of this entry »

Hungry

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This morning's breakfast consisted of a fried egg dusted with smoked paprika and a slice of sourdough toast with real butter. For lunch yesterday, I sliced up a piece of pita bread, brushed it with olive oil, sprinkled on some greek seasoning and baked it into pita chips which I ate with two heaping spoonfulls of roasted-tomato hummus. It amazes me that I can get un- hungry from so little.

My Go-To snacks are wasabi peas and popcorn with brewer's yeast, but I pick up one of those super-sized Hershey's Dark Chocolate bars every month and keep it in the kitchen drawer, eating it one square at a time when I get a craving for the sweet stuff. I'm the last person in the world who ever thought I'd eat like this. Simply. Moderately.

I was a weird little kid when it came to food.

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I'm a big fan of Trader Joes' sauces. I keep a fat stash of them in the cupboard, including my favorite Curry Simmer Sauce, Thai Red Curry Sauce and their Basil Pesto. My favorite use of TJ's Pesto sauce dish consists of blanched asparagus and green beans tossed with a fresh cheese ravioli, but this quickie pesto chicken pasta dish is now a close second. I added fresh basil, toasted pine nuts and Parmesan to mimic the pesto and a pop of grape tomatoes for sweetness.

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Lentils find their way onto so many of those lists of foods we SHOULD be eating but in my house, shoulds are widely ignored. We eat what we crave, and finding ways to make lentils craveable was easier than I ever expected. Over the last year, I've fallen in love with the lowly lentil. From Mujadara (brown lentils, wild rice and caramelized onions) to Moong Dal (yellow lentil soup with carrots and potatoes) to my new favorite Spicy Red Lentil Soup. The pop of fresh herbs and the bite of hot peppers elevate this red lentil soup to a whole new level.

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In early June, we had lunch with friends at Santa Cruz Diner. The place is famous for its huge portions, relatively low prices and the diversity of its menu. This time 'round, I ordered their coconut curry chicken soup and I've been craving another bowl of it it ever since. I found a simple recipe for a coconut curry sauce and used it as base for my soup.

14 oz. coconut milk

1 tsp curry powder
1 tsp Turmeric
¼ tsp sea salt

Toss all four ingredients into a small saucepan and simmer for 15 minutes. The sauce will thicken when it cools. I made my sauce the day before I was going to try the soup and simply refrigerated it overnight. The next day, I poached a chicken breast (simmering, not boiling water, which will tend to make the meat tough) and par-boiled a sliced potato and three carrots, chopped into large chunks. I emptied the container of curry sauce into the soup pot and added the following: 

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