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Cinco de Mayo un-Refried Bean Dip

Every time I hear the word “beans,” I giggle. I’m like a five year old with that word. My mother, my aunt Rozzie and my cousin Dana and I went to The Pritikin institute in Venice, California when I was in my 20s.They were super big on beans and raw veggies, and I am pretty sure the whole laughter thing started then. Dana hated it so much—feeling like she was in an institution (which she was), so she escaped after […]

Juices, smoothies and how to tell the difference

I want everyone to juice and to drink smoothies. If everyone did, I feel like the world would be filled with happy,bouncy people with glowing skin, sparkling white of their eyes, and shiny hair—not to mention the enormous health benefits they would receive! But there is a misconception in the juicing-smoothie world. A smoothie is not a juice even if it’s thin or green. I know I know, I hear it all the time . . . “I love green […]

Quick Healthy Meals in under 10 minutes

In my previous life as an art director, a printer once said something to me that I will never forget. (Nor will I forget this big, burly man with a very large mustache that usually had food in it, his thick Long Island accent or his paper coffee cup . . . not the gourmet kind of coffee, but the  kind you bought at the NY Delis that came in the Greek cups.) “Young lady, I’m going to give you […]

How To Make Cold Press Coffee

The key to cold press coffee is not to brew it but to filter it. Coffee carries a heavy stigma. I happen to LOVE and adore the sexy smell of coffee brewing in the morning, and often wish I was a coffee drinker. Well, not really. I was a coffee drinker and it ruled my life. I’ll retract that statement and tell you why I did eventually quit coffee and what I don’t like about it: 1) The up and […]

Cheat Days and Oven-Baked French Fries

My stepson asked me if I ever had cheat days. He asked this as we were indulging in his and my favorite, perfect, summer meal: A leafy green salad with goat cheese and shredded veggies, French fries with Dijon mustard, and a glass of crisp rosé. (He is 22 BTW, I just so you know that I am not contributing to the delinquency of a minor) I asked him what he would consider “cheat days” – and what that would […]

Preventing dehydration with refreshing summer drinks

It’s hot out there and we NEED to drink more water.

Ok, so plain water is not all that exciting, I’m with you – and I am a huge water drinker! And over-drinking can be an issue when you don’t have access to a loo, especially on road trips – not to mention unladylike and uncomfortable to wiggle in my seat or sit on my heel for who knows how many miles. I’ll take the train, thank you. My point is, just drink! BUT Dehydration has odd effects on our bodies…

The best grilled vegetables

I have a theory that if you grill something, it will taste better. Even the worst cook can grill and have culinary success. Case in point, my mother—a brilliant sandwich maker and grill master, but cook? Sorry, Mom. So, how to grill vegetables so they turn out just right every time? Well, no one is perfect, but I have found a way of making the best grilled vegetables and it produces flawless results—most of the time. Thanks to the grill […]

Kitchen frustration and mushroom carpaccio

Living in Miami sometimes is like living in a third world country. It has nothing to do with the language, or the fact that my Spanish is a bit rusty. The shops on Lincoln Road in South Beach are very modern – there’s a Nespresso and a Pottery Barn, two Starbucks, a pole dancing studio and two salsa studios. It’s more the attitude. In India it was easily detectable in the head waggle. You kind of knew that whatever it was you were requesting may or […]

A cooler and wiser iced tea

Tea and coffee are easy ways to engage and embrace a foreign culture. I’ve always found that when invited for one or the other, I’m able to snatch a vivid glimpse into what’s more than just a caffeine fix. For example, in India, being offered a short cup of sweet-spicy-milky tea in the late afternoon, with the sun belting down and the temperature well over 90, made me begin to understand how spices and hot drinks can be medicinal and […]

Grilled cheese, sort of.

I admit it. I am an enabler.  Entertaining gives me enormous joy, and cooking for large groups of loved ones gives me immense pleasure. Or even small groups, or even for just one. Cooking is a moving meditation for me – a temporal art I can loose myself in. It’s much the same feeling I get from my yoga practice. Recipe re-creation takes the thrill up to an entirely new level. It’s the challenge of taking one’s favorite recipe and […]