Gaining a Testimony of the Do's of the Word of Wisdom

House Popcorn

January 21, 2014 by Sandra | Comments Off



The first time I gave thought to the word hospitality was in 1994. I was twelve, and my family and I were visiting Savannah, Georgia. Our tour guide to one of the great old homes in the city point out the ornate carvings of pineapples festooned on banisters, bedposts, and wood carvings adorning the stately house. The prickled fruit display of pineapple, a Caribbean token of welcome (presented even to Christopher Columbus), was incorporated by the American South too, as a symbol of hospitality. Heads of household that wanted to project their generosity featured pineapples on their dinner tables and in their home decor. I loved the message, but preferred pineapples be less fibrous than wood. Continue Reading →

Salad with Tarragon, Apple and Clementine

January 9, 2014 by Sandra | 2 Comments


When I created this salad last night I knew it was a good idea as soon as I put it all together in the bowl. But it was so very simple, but simplicity seems to be the rule of the recipes around here. Approachable, simple, and fresh. Maybe that’s what I make most often, and I’m guessing most of you do too. Even with that said, I feel like I’m not offering anything impressive. There are no fancy techniques or hardly any time involved in this preparing this recipe. So I didn’t photograph or jot it down for you when I made it. Then I pulled out the leftovers today. It was still singing with flavor. The peppy licorice pop of the fresh tarragon sparkles against the sweet apple and bright clementine slivers. The thin slices of fruit helps the fruit not sink to the bottom of the bowl when you toss it, and it gives you more pieces in the salad, and a better chance to pick an assortment of each component in every forkful. It’s that composition that makes the salad so interesting, and even compelling. Can a salad be compelling? Like a good book that you are eager to rush back to, to find out what comes next, and taste the exquisite mingled mix in the next bite? I believe the best ones are. Salad gets a bad rap, but good salads are food for the senses: bright to the eyes, crisp to the ear, fresh by the scent and lively on the tongue. Great salad is refreshing when you need a good pick-me-up on a dismal day. Continue Reading →

Radish Butter

November 21, 2013 by Sandra | 1 Comment



Hello again, friends. Now that you have all stared at (and hopefully made) the avocado taco recipe for an exceptionally long time, I figured I needed to clean up my act and offer you something new. Sorry for my absence here. I wondered if I could just fade away, but enough of you (graciously) pestered me that I am back to post again at the hope that you might like it. And the hope that I can get out some recipe congestion and share somethings I have surprised myself with lately, and liked.

This recipe is an example of that. I didn’t like radishes. Every time I tried to buy them because I thought I should like them they were attack-style peppery; these were aggressive, angry vegetables. I realized that I like them best pickled on Vietnamese sandwiches and that was it. So I stopped bothering to cook with them at home. Despite signing off from housing the angry vegetables in my fridge, a few stealthy sneaked in the door in my vegetable co-op box a few weeks back. I snarled my luck, but seeing the homeless, helpless pearly white orbs, I couldn’t bear to throw such attractive radishes out. So in the produce drawer they went. Days went by and I realized I had to do something with them or they would languish and I would be guilty of waste, so I scoured my cookbook library for some inspiring application for bushy topped fall radishes. A few book swore radishes and butter were a perfect pairing. But when I had tried something similar with sliced radishes on buttered bread before they were too peppery whenever I got an unbuttered bite. But it was a good pairing. The solution seemed crazy simple when I found a recipe that called for pulsing the radishes with the butter- so every bite was buttered and balanced. Genius, but would my radishes be tame enough or would they be still be too peppery for my liking? Would a bit of butter be enough to balance the bite? Continue Reading →

Fried Egg and Avocado Tacos

July 3, 2013 by Sandra | 2 Comments



So while I have been honest about the dire straits of my cooking during the remodel of our kitchen, I have not confessed the reason I’ve been so slow posting things around here. I’ve been getting my blogging fix in another place as well and neglected this site. Ouch. If you are dying to know more about my kitchen remodel and simply must know where to catch more than you are getting here, you can get way too much of it here.

Yes, as I was making these tacos (and my lame excuse for lousy pictures) my house looked like this:


DSC_0192 - Copy


Yes, all of the flooring and furniture is gone from the entire first floor, so I am cooking tacos on the fire place in an electric skillet. You understand the average pictures- right?





And to add to the sadness- here is the dish zone in the kitchen.




Graciously the madness did come to an end. And the new flooring went in, and I stopped cooking in an electric skillet sitting on the fireplace. But I’m not sad for the few days I was doing it. A sprinkle of salty fresh cheese crisped on the skillet, topped with a yellow-gold egg, fried until crisp on the underside and then slipped into soft corn tortilla and topped with chunks of cool avocado. Oh, tasty-any-time-of-day meal.  They were totally worth it; both days in a row that I made them.

Note: Quality of the ingredients really comes through on a recipe this simple. Good stuff makes a world of difference, but even with when I’ve been stuck with mundane ones, I still happily ate the tacos anyway.

Fried Egg and Avocado Tacos

for each taco:

1 egg

1 tablespoon of crumbled fresh cheeoilse (a Mexican cojita or Feta)

1/4 of a medium avocado

a bit of oil

Heat a skillet to medium high heat, and add a smidge of oil.  Swirl around to coat the pan. Spinkle the cheese on the skillet and then crack the egg over the cheese in the skillet. Season with a bit of sea salt and pepper. Cover the pan so egg can cook through. When the egg is cooked to your liking- I like mine a bit soft, with the bottom crispy- slip it into a warmed tortilla,  and top with diced avocado. Salt and pepper avocado, and enjoy.

Shockingly Good Microwaved Brown Rice

June 2, 2013 by Sandra | Comments Off



When I mentioned that things were crazy around here with the kitchen remodel and I was feeding my family in a whole new, super simplified way, I wasn’t kidding. For a month and a half (very nearly two) we went without a kitchen- basics like a sink, stove, oven, you name it. I set up shop in the dining area that looked like this: Continue Reading →