My pantry is taking over my life. Each time I open my pantry doors, I anticipate something to fall out and spill all over my kitchen floor. What will it be this time? The high-mountain green tea my Mom brought me from Taiwan? Or the canister of Greek olive oil from Santorini that I carried with me for a whole month while backpacking through Europe?
I really need to start organizing my life and use up all these ingredients. One thing about being an avid cook is that the ingredients really do pile up. For example, I have a hefty 1 lb bag of pumpkin seeds that’s been sitting in there for quite a while, from which I’ve only used a few cups worth for my 7 Ingredient pumpkin spice granola. Living in a tiny studio apartment, space becomes real precious. Time to use up those pumpkin seeds!
I’ve actually been fiending for pesto lately. But I wanted to make something creative, not just the usual basil and pine nuts combo. Recently, I had an amazing pumpkin seed salsa from my favorite vegan restaurant in San Francisco. The flavor in this thing was pure umami. The salsa was indescribably nutty, deep, slightly smoky, and creamy. I never knew that pumpkin seeds could taste like that! Thus, I was inspired. Rummaging through my fridge I search for what I could use as the green part of the pesto. To my surprise, I find a huge bunch of cilantro that I’d completely forgotten to use for a Spanish Chicken dish I made for supper on Sunday. Don’t you hate when that happens? Luckily, it inspired me to make this Pumpkin Seed Cilantro Pesto. Continue reading
It’s almost time. In less than one week I will finally be in Paris! Over the course of the next two months, I will be backpacking throughout Europe. I can already taste the warm flaky croissants and fresh baguettes from Paris, paired with the world’s most sublime cheeses. I can already smell the smoky porchetta in Rome, slowly roasting over a spitfire for hours. I can hear the clanking of wine glasses filled with spicy Tempranillo from the vineyards of Spain. In order to prepare for the onslaught and debauchery of pure carbs, rich fatty meats and lots of alcohol over the next two months, I am amping up the veggie content in my diet here at home.
One of my favorite veggies are brussels sprouts. Often times, eating only veggies for a meal leaves me feeling hungry too quickly. However, because brussels sprouts are so hearty and packed with fiber, I end up feeling full and satisfied. Not to mention, they are packed with potassium and B-vitamins, which are essential for veggie-lovers. I also used some portabello mushrooms, which I love for their meaty texture.
It’s time for a detox. For the past few weeks, I have been spoiling my body with unnecessary indulgences, such as eating out way too often (which is also hurting my wallet), having one too many cocktails while eating out, and consuming heavy amounts of sugar from tasting new dessert recipes at work. I feel fatigued, my body is dragging me down, and my energy level is low. I also experienced my first bad sugar withdrawal. You know…that feeling you get when your body is craving sugar and the only thing you want in this world is a decadent red velvet cupcake stuffed into your mouth. So what’s a girl to do? Well whenever I am feeling like this, like the life is slowly being sucked out of me…there is one friend that I can always depend on…
KALE to the rescue! My life would not be the same without this superhero vegetable. I am a big fan of kale recipes, and this one may be the best one I’ve ever come up with. This kale salad is loaded with antioxidants, protein, and fiber, which is why I’ve called it a DETOX salad. It will make you feel fully satisfied without weighing you down, and the nutritional benefits will boost up your energy level.