OFF to Frrrrrance! Pear Spinach and Goat Cheese Salad

Well, we are at the airport getting ready to board! Our new life is about to begin! Tama is so excited he could hardly sleep last night and waking up this morning it was the first thing on his mind! He has been such a sport and he the best traveler I could possible wish for! I guess we have talked up going to France, and going to school, and how there is soccer there and trains and really good ice cream and what not for the past 5 months that he is beyond excited! Hopefully it meets his expectations because I can hardly imagine what he has pictured in his little head :).  He does know that his birthday is there and Halloween will happen too so I guess that along with some ice cream is enough to please a kid!

Anyway, we can hardly believe that everything has finally worked out! Nothing…. and I mean pretty much nothing has worked out how we imagined but it has all worked out and probably in the end better than we could have planned. What lays ahead is a mystery but we have traded in our shorts, and t’s for boots and jackets so we are at least that prepared, ha! Click here to Read More

Posted on by Andrea in Gluten-Free Meals, Main Dishes, Salads, Uncategorized, Vegetables We truly love to hear from you, Please Leave Us a Comment.

Tomato Basil Feta Salad

Well, we are now in Utah, spending a week here with my family for my little brothers wedding!  We are way up in the mountains and there is hardly anyone up here and it feels amazing! Such a contrast from being in San Francisco for the past couple of days- which was constantly crazy.

Long story short, I went to San Francisco, by myself, for mine and Tamas French Visa three days ago and ended up getting stuck there for two days! I was suppose to fly in and out on the same day (back to Canada where Tama and Shem are) but when I went to the airport they would not let me board without my passport (the French Consulate takes your passport and then mails it back with the visa stamped in). So I get to the airport and they said there is no way I can fly home, even though I had all sort of other ID. Being a little pregnant emotional girl, I started crying and everything…and they still wouldn’t let me! Uhgg, so gut wrenching and stressful! Click here to Read More

Posted on by Andrea in Gluten-Free Meals, Main Dishes, Salads, Sides, Snacks and Healthy Treats, Uncategorized, Vegetables We truly love to hear from you, Please Leave Us a Comment.

Power Packed Pops aka Sneaky Kale Popsicles -Kid Approved!

Sneaky Kale Popsicle aka Power Packed Pops

Well, are you curious to what people are cooking up in the great mother land up North? Yep, I’m here in Canada and loving every minute of it. We will be here for the a little while before we make our way to France where we will start our new chapter! Besides reconnecting with my family, I think the best thing about being here so far has been sleeping in a bed! Oh my gosh, I knew it would be better than an air mattress, but my oh my it’s completely glorious. I almost want to recommend sleeping on an air mattress for a couple of months just so you have a new found love and appreciation for your bed.  The first night, we a solid 15 years, the next 13, the next 12, and been averaging 10 hours ever since.    Back home in Hawaii I was sleeping a broken up sleep of 6 or 7 hours.  I have a new philosophy…you spend half of your life in your bed, make it a good experience- invest in a good bed and nice bedroom! Not only do you spend half of your life in your bed but that time effects the time you are out of your bed. Bad bed equals back aches, poor quality of sleep, drowsiness in the day, an unsharp mind etc etc.  Good bed equals a better quality of life- I am convinced! Or maybe I am just getting old and whimpy…what do you think? Click here to Read More

Posted on by Andrea in Breakfast, Dairy Free, Desserts, Snacks and Healthy Treats, Uncategorized, Vegetables We truly love to hear from you, Please Leave Us a Comment.

Sweet’n Tangy Broccoli Salad

healthy broccoli salad

Broccoli Salad is pretty amazing. The first time I tried it, I started downing it like I would apple crisp- plate after plate.  But hey it’s healthy, so the more the better right! Not even close. It was a bacon, cheese, mayo masterpiece. I knew it was just a tad too good to be healthy. Trying to up my health game lately, seeing how I spent a good solid month with a staple diet of Salt’n Vinegar Potato Chips, I knew I needed to make some changes.

Pregnancy got woozy and crazy and I seriously went a full month where all I could handle was Salt’n Vinegar chips. Thank goodness things are normal now and I can make some wiser choices! OH, and oh my gosh, I just found out… we are having a BOY!! We are beyond excited and we saw the ultra sound and he wasn’t a potato chip… which I was kind of worried about!  It looks like all my intuition about having a little girl was completely off! What do I know… but hey we are beyond excited and feel so very blessed. Click here to Read More

Posted on by Andrea in Gluten-Free Meals, Salads, Uncategorized, Vegetables We truly love to hear from you, Please Leave Us a Comment.

Summer Vegetable Gratin

We’ve been away celebrating the 4th of July with the whole family. For unknown reasons, this is the first time in many many years I’ve enjoyed this holiday and felt a bit patriotic. Usually the 4th comes and goes without much fan-fair or break from the usual schedule for me. The last time I sat outside to watch fireworks in the sky was 4 years ago, and I was alone in a park on the mountain side contemplating the meaning of life when the fireworks just started going off. “Oh ya, it must be the 4th of July then…”  Those were my exact thoughts.

Uncle Cody hooking the fish, aka prizes, and Teya patiently waiting for one to bite.

But this year was different. First of all we’re spending the summer with family, and with the outrageous heat this country has been experiencing we decided it was necessary to spend the entire day playing in the water.  We set up all sorts of water games for the kids, they got to “Go Fishing” for a prize after each game, the family played old school backyard games together like “Mother May I?”, then we had a monumental feast of classic American cuisine and BBQ, sat around the firepit all night, did the firework thing, had a psychedelic moment with approximately 1 thousand glow sticks, and then finally camped out in the backyard.

Confession… the kids camped out and most of us adults just ended up migrating to our warm comfortable beds inside. We’ve gone soft! Follow all of that with a big breakfast shindig, more nights of games like “Ticket to Ride” and endless leftovers and it was the funnest and busiest 4th I’ve had… ever.

I dunno, not so much more American, but certainly more French!

I think part of it was to prove to Phil that I’m not fully nomadic in nature, that I do have some sense of connection to my roots. I had to show this Canadian husband what it means to be “Amrrrrcan!” And in full support, he attempted to embrace the Amrrrrrcan spirit by shaving his beard down to a mustache (he’s spent two years in Texas, at the heart of it all, and assumed a good ‘ol cowboy mustache would legitimize him.) Click here to Read More

Posted on by Tawny in Gluten-Free Meals, Main Dishes, Travel Inspired, Vegetables We truly love to hear from you, Please Leave Us a Comment.

Roasted Red Peppers Simplified

Roasted red peppers are everywhere in great cuisine. They are found in the traditional dishes of multiple cultures across the globe. Lately they can be spotted somewhere in a dish on most menus as the push to better health grows. Red peppers are wonderful in the raw, but roasting them gives another level of flavor as it seems to deepen the intensity of the pepper flavor but softens the bitter edge. Teya, my oldest, can’t handle them raw but loves them roasted.

Roasted Red Peppers Simplified simple easy recipe

Yet the more recipes I saw for roasting red peppers the more I began to wonder: why so complicated? Many of the instructions out there say to spread oil all over them first. There just seemed to be a lot of unnecessary steps thrown into the process. During my time in Europe, the way we roasted peppers was much simpler and easier.

Roast several at once so you can fill a jar to keep in the fridge for a week. You’ll find when you have them on hand, you’ll be throwing them on salads, in paninis, blended into sauces, on cold cut sandwiches, dice in your rice for dinner or rolled up with some cheese inside a chicken breast for a great surprise. The possibilities are literally endless, and if you have a fresh jar in your fridge those possibilities will actually happen. Click here to Read More

Posted on by Tawny in Back to Basics, Spreads and Sauces, Vegetables We truly love to hear from you, Please Leave Us a Comment.

Tomato Confit

Why would I go to the trouble of making my own tomato products? I’m busy as it is, so giving myself and extra project when it can be bought at at store in a can seems counter productive.

Well, because doing everything within reasonable reach for good health is a top priority in our little family. This is not without reason: my husband, The Bod, survived cancer as a child. Roughly from age 2 to 8 he was treated for leukemia. Not long after, when he was 11, he lost his father to lung cancer. Now he is so dedicated to health, wellness, and physical strength in an effort to avoid any future illnesses, it give’s him a… well… nice physic and thus the reason I tease him with the nickname The Bod.

Now that I’ve recently discovered I have an AI disease preventing me from having gluten, diary, eggs, and other things, it’s added to the importance of prevention in our family. I’m fine, as long as I eat right there are no symptoms or problems. We have two precious young girls and one bebe on the way who we don’t ever want to watch sufferform an illness. Not everything is in our hands as far as that goes, but whatever I CAN get my hands on to prevent, I WILL.

Click here to Read More

Posted on by Tawny in Dairy Free, Gluten-Free Meals, Spreads and Sauces, Vegetables We truly love to hear from you, Please Leave Us a Comment.

Potato and Cauliflower Gratin

I’ve made exactly one potato dish this entire year… um, include last year in that calculation… it was that same one I shared a couple days ago. Seeing as potatoes are meant to be a new part of my life, I need to keep honing my pommes de terres skills and resurrect some old-time favorite recipes.

This one for you today is another tried and true from France. Michelle and Michelle, the two French grandmothers who taught me much, made sure to teach me the secrets of a wonderful, crispy, soft, savory, multilevel Gratin.

cheese gratin potato cauliflower french recipe

Gratin is a French word that means  “to scrape.” It is literally used in reference to the “scrapings” of bread or cheese. So do NOT be afraid to let your gratin get good and cooked, it’s hard to overcook a potato, so get the edges nice and crispy so a lot of delicious scraping happens at the dinner table. Click here to Read More

Posted on by Tawny in Sides, Vegetables We truly love to hear from you, Please Leave Us a Comment.

French Stuffed Potatoes with Mushrooms and Mascarpone

I day dream a lot. It’s a talent of mine. Yes, I choose to call it a talent… justifiably because at times it has developed into reality and taken me places.

Lately, because of a book I’m reading and the good fortune of a friend who is going to be moving there, I’ve been daydreaming of France. All things French. I envision myself with a few acres of my own in the southern part of the country where I tend to my potager and a few miniature farm animals — dwarf pigs and dwarf goats. Chickens too. Can’t forget about the chickens. I want to send my girls in the morning to collect eggs just like I used to do when visiting my grandfather’s farm. The days when I lived in the Aquitaine region of France are slowly sinking further and further behind me.

I miss it all the time.

So to satisfy this yearning I turned to what it is that I do everyday: cooking. There’s no better way to recall fond memories than the smells and flavors of a meal that you enjoyed back when.  I’ve been needing to get better at potato-dish preparations. Before I learned that I was gluten intolerant, it had been years since I bought something other than a sweet potato!  Since les pommes de terres are a staple in most French kitchens it was the perfect match.

Les Pommes de Terres Farcies, aka Stuffed Potatoes, are the chosen ones to bring my family back to country table I’m dreaming of. Click here to Read More

Posted on by Tawny in Gluten-Free Meals, Sides, Vegetables We truly love to hear from you, Please Leave Us a Comment.

Salted Edamame with Roasted Garlic and Herbs

 Kara, in response to your comment… this one is for you! Kara wrote and asked for some ideas with edamame, and so I put on my “lab coat” and started experimenting. Thank you for the request, and I am happy to report we found a winning recipe- three variations-all extremely easy and all mouth watering!

Salted Edamame with Roasted Garlic and Herbs

There is this restaurant called Ola at Turtle Bay Resort, on the North Shore, that serves an edamame appetizer that everyone goes crazy over- myself included.

The server brings out this massive plate, piled high with buttery, salty edamame and a whole head of roasted garlic sits right on top.

When the server puts the plate down, he takes the head of garlic and squeezes it over the entire plate. The roasted garlic comes out like butter and smears all over the edamame- everyone Ooo’s and Awwhs… I am telling you, it is out of this world! Click here to Read More

Posted on by Andrea in Dairy Free, Gluten-Free Meals, Sides, Vegetables We truly love to hear from you, Please Leave Us a Comment.