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Monday, August 26, 2019

Chilled Pea Soup with Mint

I'm getting through these hot and humid summer days with lots of salads and chilled soups like this one, inspired by a recent trip to France. Whenever I'm in Toulouse, I love eating lunch at the Victor Hugo market, famous for its fresh produce and local products. Above the market, on the second floor, are five restaurants turning these best quality ingredients into delicious food. I had previously enjoyed a good Salade Landaise and was hoping to do it again, but we arrived at the end of the lunch service and there were only two options left for our first course. So, unexpectedly, I found myself eating a chilled pea soup with mint on a hot summer day in the south of France. I was delightfully surprised and this is my effort to re-create it.

Friday, June 7, 2019

Chocolate Almond Cake


This dessert is light, delicious and gluten-free. It's full of antioxidants from the cocoa powder and essential fatty acids from the almonds. High in protein and only slightly sweetened with a touch of honey, it is a great way to end a special meal.

1 cup raw almonds
1/4 cup pure cocoa powder
Pinch sea salt
1/4 cup raw, local honey
2 eggs at room temperature
6 tbsp organic butter, melted and slightly cooled, plus more to coat spring-form pan

Preheat the oven to 350F.

Coat the inside of a springform pan (8.5 inches in diameter) with butter.

Grind the almonds to a fine powder in a food processor. Add the cocoa powder and sea salt and mix until well combined. Transfer the almond mixture to a large mixing bowl. Add the honey, eggs and melted butter and mix with an electric mixer until well combined. Pour into the springform pan and smooth into an even layer.

Transfer the tarte to the oven and bake for 12 to 14 minutes, until baked through and slightly puffed. Do not over-bake. The center may still be slightly shiny, but as long as a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean, it's done.

Cool it completely to room temperature before removing from the pan. Serve immediately or cover until ready to eat.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

5-Minute Mexican Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding


This light yet creamy dessert is full of healthy fat and fiber. Because it's made with chia seeds, it has a texture similar to tapioca pudding. It also has hints of cinnamon and cayenne, which have been shown to improve blood sugar control, promote detoxification, and reduce inflammation in the body. This pudding takes only minutes to make, but it has to sit overnight in the fridge before you can eat it, so plan ahead and make it in advance.

For a vegan and dairy-free pudding, substitute unsweetened almond milk for whole milk.

  • 1/3 cup chia seeds
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened non-alkalized cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1.5 cups whole milk
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup

  1. Whisk everything together in a large bowl. Allow the mixture to sit for a few minutes and thicken. Whisk again, cover, and transfer to the fridge overnight. 
  2. The following day, remove the pudding from the fridge and stir it well. Taste it for seasoning and make any necessary adjustments. 
  3. Spoon it into serving dishes and garnish, if you wish, with freshly whipped unsweetened cream, cacao nibs, mint leaves, and/or organic berries.

Friday, February 23, 2018

Turmeric Tea for Colds and Flu

Turmeric has a long history as both a food and a medicine. Traditionally it has been used to treat small pox, arthritis, liver disease, digestive problems, menstrual disorders, and cancer, as well as respiratory conditions and infections.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Raspberry Lavender Shrub

Shrubs are a refreshing combination of sour and sweet. Also known as drinking vinegars, these beverages date back centuries. They are traditionally made with vinegar, fruit, spices, and sugar. Shrubs likely started as a way to preserve summer harvest but they have medicinal benefits as well. Read all about it in my article, "The Health Benefits of Shrubs."

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

How to Make a Golden Brown and Perfectly Tender Turkey


When it comes to making a turkey that's thoroughly cooked, golden brown, and perfectly tender, success will ultimately depend on two factors: heat and moisture. Braising creates a moist environment, so the white meat doesn't dry out, as long as you cook it low and slow. The bird comes out fall-apart tender and the leftover cooking liquid makes the most delicious gravy.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Quick Chicken Liver Paté with Cranberries and Pistachios


This is my version of chopped chicken livers on toast. I sauté them with onions, garlic, Port and Madeira wine, then purée the mixture into a smooth paté. Unlike other kinds of paté, this one can be eaten right away and doesn't require baking or pressing or curing.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Dark Chocolate Cacao Nut Cups


If you're looking for a healthy homemade Valentine's Day treat, these are for you. The dark chocolate cups are filled with a mixture of raw cacao beans, coconut, walnuts, and dates, giving them a soft and chewy texture, and a deep chocolate flavor.

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Placentophagy and a Postpartum Smoothie

Placentophagy is the practice of consuming placenta after childbirth. It's common among mammals and gaining popularity with humans too, especially after celebrity moms have endorsed it as a way to ward off postpartum depression, increase milk production, replenish nutrients, and speed recovery after delivery.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

How to Properly Marinate Fish and Seafood

My mother-in-law Méranie is from Martinique, a French island where fish and seafood are a large part of the local diet. This is her technique for marinating whole fish but it can be applied to any kind of seafood. Here I use wild-caught mackerel from my local fish market. The secret is to marinate it long enough for it to be flavorful, but not long enough for the citrus juice to "cook" the fish.