Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Roasted Cauliflower Leek Soup

I can eat soup in any weather. I love it. All soups; broth, cream, chunky, spicy, mellow, cold- WHATEVER.
I found some beautiful leeks at my Farmer's Market last Saturday for a great price with the idea of making leek soup immediately. My mom first made me Potato Leek soup when I was little but it was more of an indulgence thing, like calorie wise...not price, it's like the cheapest soup to make. Anyhow, I hated onions and was not keen on these long stocks that smelled similar to an onion. Reluctantly I tried it and fell in love. Now, I love leeks raw, cooked any way and in anything. In the whole "don't eat carbs, they are the devil" phase we went through I found I love using cauliflower in place of the potato in dishes. Cauliflower is so underrated in my opinion. You always see it lonely on the crudité platter after all of the other veggies have gone or smothered in cheese hiding it's solo deliciousness. Also, in my nutrition education and learning about the nightshade allergy and cooking for people who suffer from it I learned potatoes are a huge trigger for pain in this autoimmune disorder.  So in this version of the soup I opted for just half of a potato to give it a some creaminess knowing none of my nightshaders wouldn't be eating this ;) So here you go! Hope you enjoy! xo

You'll need:
2 medium leeks, chopped into medium sized rounds and cleaned*
1 head of cauliflower rough chopped- I keep the core on and remove the bottom green stems
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1TBSP of White Pepper
2 small or 1 lg clove of garlic
3 cups of veggie stock
2 cups of almond milk- make sure it's not that flavored crap!
1/2 of a russet potato or a small gold potato (optional) rough chopped

Pre heat your oven to 325. In a roasting pan toss the cauliflower, leeks, potatoes and garlic in just a bit of olive oil and a sprinkle of salt. You just want to make sure the veggies are coated not drenched. Roast in your oven until they are tender and golden, my oven was about 50 minutes.
If you have a roasting pan that you can use on your stove burners go ahead and turn the burners to a medium heat and add your liquids and white pepper. White pepper is very fine and a little goes a long way on the peppery heat it adds so add a sprinkle a bit in at a time and taste. At this point I was looking for something a little hearty so I added about a half teaspoon of earth balance butter. This rounded out the creamy, savory feeling you want in a soup like this but totally optional. Once the liquid and the veggies swam together for a bit, about 10 minutes, I ladled 3 quarters of the soup into my food processor, you can totally use your vitamix or whatever high powered blending tool you have. Pulse to your desired texture; I like the "creamy" with whole veggies still visible.
I garnished with some chopped fresh parsley because I love it but feel free to top with some croutons of some sort.

Enjoy your bowl! or two ;)

Friday, June 13, 2014

Tofu Spring Rolls

Tofu Spring Rolls

Makes 9 rolls

You’ll need:

Rice paper spring roll wrappers

For the tofu:

Extra firm tofu (*pressed)- I use the organic half blocks from TJs

¾ cup fresh OJ (sometimes I use mango or pineapple juice-use what ya have)

½ cup tamari or shoyu

1 tbsp sesame oil

2 tbsp grapeseed or sunflower oil

½ tbsp fresh grated ginger

½ tbsp minced garlic


Garlic chili paste, a pinch of cayenne, or enough sriracha to satisfy your hot self

Fillings for the rolls:

Totes up to you but I use combinations of these guys:

Red pepper matchsticks

Cucumber spears

Shizu leaf

Shredded napa cabbage- if you use regular cabbage it will tear the rice wrapper, napa is softer J chopped butter lettuce works too

Shredded carrot

Basil leaf

Mint leaves



Green apple matchsticks

*after you remove the tofu from its packaging, wrap your block of tofu in a clean kitchen towel and set something with weight like a cast iron skillet, a brick, the base of a nurtibullet or vitamix on top of your towel wrapped tofu. This will express any moisture out of the tofu making it better for marinating.


In a 9x9 baking dish, like one you would make brownies in, whisk the tofu marinade.  Cut the block into 9 sticks. Lay them in the marinade. Let them sit for about 10 mins then flip to get the other side. Pre heat your oven to 375, when the oven comes to temp slide those puppies in that sauna. Bake for 25 mins. When the marinade has baked on to your dish and you realize you’re going to need a jack hammer to get it back to the way you started, they’re done. Let them cool on the counter if you have that kind of time. If you are like me, pop those bitches in the freezer to take the edge off then let them cool completely in the fridge. In this time set up your rolling station. Cut your fillings the way you want them. Inspect your rice paper; sometimes they come out of the package straight up unusable so, with dry hands, pull out the good ones. And FYI, if you’re using the brown rice paper wraps those tend to get drier faster-wrap fast!

Get a large bowl or baking dish, fill it with warm water, not luke warm and not hot, warm. Place the rice paper in the water and with your fingers move the sheet around gently. When the wrap becomes pliable pull it out of the water and place on your clean surface. Take a clean dishtowel and pat dry the side facing you. Lay your ingredients just below the center of the paper. Fold the sides in first, then fold the bottom up to the center <- this piece is clutch. You want to wrap it around your ingredients tight enough to keep the guys in but not so tight that your wrapper breaks. Keep rolling up keeping the side in. It takes practice, I’ve made a lot of burritos in my life, I’m pretty solid at it. The first batch of rolls I made looked like my 5 year old did it…who cares what it looks like, it’s gonna taste bomb!

Storing these yummies:

If your family is like mine these don’t last very long, but they do dry fast. I lay a damp paper towel down then Butter lettuce leaves in a storage container, put the rolls in then cover with more lettuce leaves and top with another damp towel.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Ground Turkey Zucchini Boats

Feeds you and one hungry husby or you and lunch for the week ;)
You'll need:
1lb lean ground turkey
1 jar hot marinated artichoke hearts
1 can petite diced tomatoes
1/4 cup fat free or low fat cream cheese
4 med/large zucchini
1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Make it!

Pre heat oven to 350. Halve your zucchini and scoop out the center of each half making little boats.* Place in a oiled (spray or olive oil) baking dish and bake for 7 mins. While the zucchini is in the oven, cook the turkey in a non stick pan. While the turkey is cooking, fork the artichokes out of the jar and reserve the liquid for later; chop the spicy artichokes and add them to the turkey. Mix together then add the juice from the 'chokes and the 1/4 cup of cream cheese. Once everything has melted and looks creamy and delish add the tomatoes and a sprinkle of sea salt or whatever you have. Your oven timer went off at some point while the turkey was getting ready... Scoop the turkey into the zucchini boats. You'll probably have more than enough turkey mix, I just added it all across the top of them all. Cover the dish with foil and bake for 15 mins. Take out of oven, sprinkle boats with cheddar cheese... Sprinkle... Not smother; turn broiler on hi an broil for about 3mins, just so cheese is melted.
I served 2 per person thinking I'd have left overs however, to my delight, the husby ate them all leaving not a left over in sight. You can top with salsa or sour cream or avo; swap the cheddar for mozzarella and sprinkle with crushed red and parm. Next time I'm gonna add kalamatas and feta.

*save those zucchini centers for muffins, bread or baby food :)


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Constant Craving

At the beginning of the year I introduced a life style change and while I whole heartedly believe that a plant based diet is the best for the body to enrich and alkalize the body. After being a vegan again, this time for just about 9 months, I've started to mix in lean proteins such as fish and chicken. After feeling really sick and tired and craving a steak like a lion in the jungle, I gave in. I feel a thousand percent more energetic and satisfied. I also noticed when working full time and managing every one's schedules and still settling in to our new life, I was not as and could not get as prepared as I used to be. Sure I could make everything at 10pm when I got home but sitting on the couch with my husband sounded better. I still feel like if I follow a meatless monday and keep the meats to an occasional fare I won't feel like I failed completely. I'm not saying I'm stocking up on ground beef and Hamburger Helper, just being more flexible. I still don't do dairy, no need for any of that and still making veg the plate majority. Sounds pretty balanced to me. So, that's where I'm at now.

labels are for products, not people.

be well

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

it's not easy being green

It's not.
It's been almost two months since we moved to Paso Robles. It's great. I've locked down a job at Paso Robles Sports Club as their front desk associate. Also, working with Class Act Dance and School of Performing Arts as a sub and assistant in some classes; still kind of getting my feet wet with them. They are a super classy studio with great ethics, very important, and beautiful dancers. They have a great group of young dancers I'm excited to work with in the upcoming season. The owner and ballet director is a wonderful woman and the jazz director is great too. I'll be a lucky lady to secure the position I'm hoping for with them. The boys are doing great; Oliver is walking and becoming pretty chatty. Jude loves his new gym and has all of the coaches loving him, my sweet little clown. Kenny is super happy at work. Now that I have a job we can seriously look at places.
So all in all we're good.
I, however, have been pretty flexible on the vegan tip. Cheese in this, bites of fish, random shit...not as dedicated as I was before. Not because I don't have time but I've had to succumb to the fact that I don't have a fridge. I don't have my pantry. I don't have a whole lot of money. I had to buy a real bra yesterday; like one with cups and lining and stuff. I haven't had a normal size bra in a while. All good things, however, that costs. My dance pants, yoga pants, whatever, they had holes and were sliding off my hips. All good things, however, that costs. On my feet all day at work, inserts didn't work, need new shoes. All things I didn't take into account. These new expenses put a bit of a damper on the pantry. It's cheap being a vegan; fruit, veg, grain, the occasional fake meat deal. Without the space and limited cash flow it's hard to maintain. I'm not saying I'm eating fish sammies and cheese balls but if it means I can get comfy work shoes, i'm giving in. I was just not eating... that wasn't fun. Maybe I'm doing better than I think. I mean, I do have to make my own dinner 90% of the time. Now that I'm working larabars are my friends, my nalgene is always with me. The sports club lets me use their vitamix for my green smoothies in the a.m. Maybe I'm overreacting. Maybe I'm just dying for my own space.

I feel better now that I got that out.
Thanks :)

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Bon Jour!

Little town, it's a quiet village; every day like the one before. Little town full of little people waking up to say... Bon Jour!
-Belle, Beauty and the Beast

Ok, so that might be what plays in my head every time I drive around town and it might be a little dramatic as I don't remember a Kohl's and a Wal-Mart in Belle's village, nevertheless, this place is teeny tiny and very nice. I mean, it is aesthetically nice but the people are ridiculously nice. Obviously there are a few randoms that don't immediately greet you with a "hey, hello, how are ya!" but they will ask you about the contents of your cart or bring up the fact after reading your unchanged drivers license that you are not from here and Paso is much better than anywhere around LA. When that happens, in my head, is I'm a brown lip lined, flat billed dodger hat wearing chick with gold charmed wrists and I throw up a "LA" flashing my bedazzled acrylics and end it in "what?!" chest pop. Guys, there's a lot that happens in my head. What actually happens is I politely say, "Well, it seems to be a lot different." And I push my cart away, rolling my eyes under my sunglasses.
But let's get real. This place is pretty fly. The cutest homes line streets like Pine, Chestnut, Vine, Park and Oak; 90% are all craftsman style with porches and fenced yards. There are some areas where there aren't even sidewalks. Stop signs up the wahzoo, and if you live downtown you are walking distance to all the fun. Every Tuesday afternoon and Saturday morning there is a farmer's market. Tuesday's is a bit small carrying just some essentials like bread, fruit and veg. Saturday is when everyone comes to play. Tamales, jerky, raw, honey, crafts, art, jewels, and the standard fruit and veg. I went yesterday afternoon with my mother-in-law, Le Ann to my first Tuesday Market. It was glorious. Some cabbages the size of a globe, purple and green next to strawberries that looked like rubies piled high. Onions still connected to their stalk nestled between radishes, sweet potatoes and other root veggies. Bags of spinach and arugula, curly kale, dinosaur kale, swiss chard all for two dollars a bunch. So you say, um, Linds, I can get Kale for 99cents at the store. Sure, what? like 7 stems? Please. Childs play. This is more than 12 stems of kale and chard. I get super pumped about veggies, so sue me. I will be able to get enough fruit and veg for myself and family for a week with a $20 bill. I know farmers markets aren't some new invention but I've never been to one with such a variety. The closest I've seen is the Union Square one in NY; I like that one. I'm going to the one in SLO next week, it's supposedly ranked like, number two in the world. I'm down!
Besides fruit and veggies and nice people, everything is going very well. The husby is so in love with his job which I haven't seen in a very long time; it's very refreshing. We joined Planet Fitness a couple weeks ago. I go everyday, KT joins in when he can. I've just been hired for choreography and director support for Young Performers Theater (YoungPerformersTheater.com). It's a pretty cool gig, 4 weeks of work, great pay and an option to sign on for the next show. There are a few other things in the works that I won't get into just yet as I don't believe in speaking on it until my name is on the dotted line.

Things are looking up
be well

Monday, May 21, 2012

Follow The Yellow Brick Road

You know when Dorothy's house is in the middle of the tornado and she wakes up and sees all those that she loves and then some that may frighten her? That's what I feel like. I feel like there is so much going on  all around me and all I'm doing is spinning in circles.
We all went to San Pedro's treasure, The Pacific Diner for one last family breakfast with Jude before my in- laws left with him. I said, "eh, eff it, I'm gonna have egg whites" I got a vegetarian omelet with egg whites, avo and ortega chile. I forgot to ask for no cheese so I just ate it as is. So good. I devoured the entire thing; I was so hungry from barely eating the day before, the poor omelet had no chance. I was super full until dinner time when, after packing up the kitchen, we ordered italian; I went for eggplant parm. I normally just get a salad with no cheese so it's just lettuce tomato, mushrooms, olives and cucumbers. Not this time. I still feel sick; it was like my brain stopped working. So lets recount this; Breakfast: eggs and cheese; Lunch: nothing; Dinner: cheese and white pasta. My body went through a major shock and my poor husby paid for it!!! oh man, bad, bad news bears. MIS-ER-UH-BLE!!! I was happy to know that while my body was writhing in intestinal pain it knew that this was bad. My body rejected that shit so fast I was kinda of happy to know that I really am not the same. This old girl has done the work and I can't mess with that. 
Still packing, just thought I'd drop in for a sec. 

be well for me. 
i am not at this moment.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Tommy Can You Hear Me

You know when you watch Romeo and Juliet or Moulin Rouge you hope that this time Romeo will get the courier or Satine never gets sick? That's what happens every year, for the past nine, that I will wake up on this day and the ending will be different. I can't tell you what I ate for breakfast yesterday but I can tell you what I was doing 10 years ago today. A feature of the human brain Im not too fond of. The days you wish never happened are always the most vivid. It seems fuzzy and dizzying at the moment and yet, the next time you think of that time it's as clear as a freshly cleaned window. I was at my boyfriends house, sitting in his garage drinking Jack and Cokes. There was a lingering smell of stale cigarettes and bong water. I was wearing jeans and a oversized quicksilver hoodie. My boyfriend's dad came to the door on the side of the garage and told me my dad was on the phone. It was pretty late so I knew it could only be one of two things something bad happened or I was in trouble. His voice was low as if he had been asleep, but spoke to me like I was a five year old. I couldn't process what he just said so I made him say it again. I repeated back as if I was leaning English for the first time. I had had a drink so he came to get me. We pulled up to my aunts house and my dad gave me some gum in case my breath smelled. When I opened the door everyone looked up with red, teary eyes. I made my rounds and gave hugs to everyone there. I remember a lot more, in detail even, but I don't like to. So here's what I'm going to remember: My cousin, Tommy, was probably the nicest human on the planet. You see, my dad is significantly younger than his siblings so,we, my sister and I, are also significantly younger than our cousins. They never made me feel that way though. Tommy had one of those personalities that you always wanted around; a smile that would brighten anyone's day; gave the best hugs and always knew when you really needed it. Now, I was the oldest out of the "little cousins" so they all gave be a rough time at some point. " Lindsey sandwich", "Lindsey taco", "Lindsey burrito", I was always caught between Tommy and someone, usually his younger brother Michael. He would bribe me with a dollar to walk on his back or karate chop it and for every minute he would give me a dollar. He once told me I was the best dancer he knew and I would be a star. He lived in Colorado as an adult so his visits were random and sporadic but always the best part of the holiday or whatever brought him here. I'm not a religious person but I do know my cousin, my grampa and my grandmama are all together with the rest of our family. I also know that they are always with me watching over my family and I. 10 years and I still cry. I still can't process what happened. I know that accidents happen; I know that the out come is unpredictable. I was in a terrible accident; bad, like, really bad. Why did I get to live? I saw the pictures of my car. I saw where they cut me out. I woke up in that car because someone was watching over me. I love you cousin. No matter what Esper or my sister say, I know I'm your fav ;) Massive hugs. xoL

Sunday, April 29, 2012

The Man Of Metropolis Steals Our Hearts

My mom and dad used to take my sister and I on drives out to Hollywood because I loved it so much and I was going to be a star. I'm not actually sure that's the real reason we went out there and I honestly can't remember doing much else on those days but that's what I'd like to imagine. As soon as we spotted the Hollywood sign from the freeway we would sing, "Hah-llywood, dudunananana nah nu nuh." My mom would start with us and then shortly dropped out because she was over it. I persisted with my dad... I'm sure Jess was there, just not sure what she was doing. Because I watched so many old movies with my grandparents, paternal and maternal, I had this idea of Hollywood as if I was straight off the train from Ohio in 1922. I imagined going to Musso and Frank Grill and sitting in Charlie Chaplin's booth with Mary Pickford and  Douglas Fairbanks drinking martini's while noshing on random stuff the chef brought to our table. I loved it. I was pretty devastated when I saw 'Pretty Woman' for the first time and realized "Hollywoodland" was no more.
One of these drives was April 29, 1992. On our way back into San Pedro, coming down the 110 South we saw fire trucks, fire engines, paramedics; everyone was heading north. My dad says, "Oh man, here come the real men! Was that 48s? I wonder..." As quite a few engines and trucks fly past us, away from their own areas, my mom says quietly, "Ronnie, What the hell is going on?" More flashing lights pass us, my dad whispers, "We gotta get home. I think I'm going to have to go in." I was 9, nearly 10, so obviously I knew everything. Even though they whispered I knew something wasn't right the way my mom sat up in her seat as my dad sped home. We turned on the TV and there it was; South Central, now referred to as South Los Angeles, was ablaze. As the news informed us of what we missed while we were off playing, my dad was calling his station and packing his work bag. It was bad. The only thing I saw was visible terror on TV and my dad was going to it. You see, when I was 5, in kindergarten, it became very clear to me what my dad's occupation was. All I knew then was fire was owie and don't touch. So, my dad goes inside the fire? He voluntarily walks into fire, owie? I freaked. When my dad left the house for work it was like, 5 am, he would always come in and give us a kiss before he left. One time, ONE time, he didn't and I chased his ass out to the garage, setting off the house alarm, to get my goodbye kiss. At five I was already worried that my dad was going to get hurt. Flash forward just five years from that incident to watching the news, as nothing else was on, seeing looting, fires, fights, guns, Marines, National Guard, waiting for my dad to call us at some point to tell us he was ok. My dad was an Engineer at the time so he was the guy outside of the fire manning the pumps and hoses on the engine. Any other time I would be thrilled with this earned rank, however, this week him standing outside of the fire put him in just as much danger as going in. Of course his station was the station right in the middle of it all. He told my mom and I that he was ok and that the knuckle heads throwing bricks at cops weren't doing that to the LAFD. I hated that week.
When my dad finally got to come home he looked like a Zombie. I just remember him sleeping for a while and my mom made sure we didn't bug him. After things calmed down President Bush visited LA and my dad's station, congratulating them on a stellar performance. My grandma has the picture of my dad shaking his hand hanging in her room.
At that time I was unclear of the exact reason those numb skulls started beating Reginald Denny. I kind of knew what happened with the police and Rodney King, kind of. I couldn't comprehend the point of the riots. Protesting gone bad? No fear of authority? Greed? Some people got mad because they didn't agree with a verdict, so you're going to burn your city down? I did not, could not process this. What I did know is what was happening, the riots, not the verdict, was putting my dad, my hero, in danger and that is when I felt hate; true, sad, tunnel visioned, hate. I truly hated that week. I hated that my mom was worried. I hated my dad being gone. I hated the people stealing, looting. I hated the people running with guns in plain sight. I hated the news for taking over not giving a break for something normal. The hate turned to relief when my dad came home. And once the smell of smoke cleared from the air and things started going back to normal, my worry became less and my dad reassured me it was over.
Even though nothing major happened to my dad that week, which I am very grateful for, the fact that the regular fear of "might" or "could" was heightened, was enough. As I grew up I had to change the way I looked at my dad's job to lighten the fear that loomed every time he was on duty. When he made Captain, the whole first one in last one out thing re-started my worries. That's his fault, he should know better than to tell  me that.
My dad is a hero, not just a regular hero like moms and dads are to daughters, like a super hero. 20 years ago my dad and his station helped and saved a lot of people, most of those people were the ones with the guns and stolen loot. The dummies who got shot by the owner of the store they just stole from. Containing a fire so it burns but doesn't get to the elementary school near it. Responding to injured people that were left on the door step of the station. Protecting the LAPD from being assaulted and shot at. I know there are a lot of kids that felt the same way I did that week. Their dads and moms were doing the same thing my dad was. So that is what today means to me. That's the way I remember it.

My dad is in Ireland right now getting my grandparents house together. I believe he is also golfing and hanging out with some family friends. He comes home in a week to return to his daily job of being an everyday hero. It will basically be like when Clark Kent comes out of the phone booth as Superman as my dad gets back into LA. Basically ;)

be well and be kind,

Saturday, April 21, 2012


There's been a lot of chaos and anxiety over here. My house is slowly becoming piles and bags, lists are being made, craigslist is a daily visit, donations are being made...
While I do love San Pedro and will always call it home, Kenny and I have decided to relocate. Cool! Where? Long Beach? Torrance? No, no... We load up a truck on May 25th and drive to our new home in Paso Robles. What the hell? I know, right? I mean, Am I sad? Yes...kind of. I'm really sad that I'll be more than a walk or 3 min drive from my mom and dad. I'm bummed my sister can't just pick me up when she wants to get out. I'm sad to leave my friends, however, I am moving to wine country so I feel like there will be no problem getting them there ;) We went for a visit this last week to meet with some employment opportunities and check out the rental situation. The outcome of those three days showed Kenny and I that it really is all happening; the universe is opening up and showing some love. This is all done for the sake of our little bears. I am very grateful for my husband and his hard work. The last few years have been up and down trying to figure out what we are going to do; careers, school, blah blah blah. And most recently, with him working two jobs and me at home with the kids...boo! But now we see that hard work does pay off.
We knew a long time ago we wouldn't stay in Pedro forever and now the talk has become the walk. We will be staying with Kenny's parents for a spell while looking for a place to live. We will put our stuff in storage up there and for the four of us, I have mapped out a way for us to live with the bare essentials. We are very grateful Kenny's parents are letting us invade their space! We leave on a Friday and Kenny starts working that following Monday. He was just hired this last Tuesday at Central Coast Gymnastics Sports Center, Inc in San Luis Obispo. It's a super legit gymnastics studio with competitive and recreational programs. He'll be coaching some littles and taking on some of their admin stuff. We stopped by there on our way out of town so he could have a chat with the director and we could take a peek inside. They are all very nice people; very welcoming and chill. One of the girls took Jude to jump around on the trampolines; it was hilarious, he loved it, of course! He and Oliver will start there some time after we get there as well. Also, as it turns out, their ballet instructor quit a week ago so I may slide in that spot as well. I've been wanting to go back to work part time, hence the studying, and it seems like it's all going to work out. Kenny's mom, Le Ann, has offered to watch the babes should our schedules conflict for any reason; so maj. Our Juju bear starts pre school in the fall; I can't even handle that mess..."that mess" I'm referring to is me. I've been in contact with some theater connections hoping for the possibility of getting back on stage. It's all very scary and very exciting. 
Paso Robles is in the northern part of San Luis Obispo County; driving from Paso to San Luis Obispo (SLO) is 30 miles. So in LA time that would be what, an hour drive? more or less, usually more. In SLO time it's about 30 minutes. Insanity! It takes me 30 minutes to get to Torrance and that's 10 miles. I'll give you a second to take that in... I know. It's all very pretty up there with great farmer's markets, nice people, good schools; it's very inviting. Now knowing that Kenny will only have to work one awesome job that will take care of us is amazing. I get to go back to work and the boys will be in great schools and a wonderful atmosphere. It's all happening...

To my heart,
Home is where ever I'm with you xo

be well