Month: April 2014

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Celebrate Cinco de Mayo with Mexican Grilled “Pizza” | Tlayuda

Sometimes I want it all: A clean house and a lazy weekend. A good night’s sleep and a Doctor Who marathon. Salad and pizza. Mexican and Italian food. I might not be able to balance out the former two, but as for the latter? Yes and yes.  The biggest tortilla in town. Tlayuda is Mexico’s answer to pizza. But don’t expect tomato sauce and basil leaves. This popular Oaxacan street food is made on an enormous tortilla and spread thickly with black beans (Take note: these aren’t ordinary black beans – they’ve been blended with a heaping of roasted garlic and onion, cumin, and chile powder). Purists will spread the tortilla with lard, too – though I prefer a light brush of vegetable oil. Finally, cheese is sprinkled on top, as is your choice of meat (beef, pork, or browned chorizo) and a garden’s-worth of toppings (think avocado, tomato, cheese, cilantro, lettuce, and jalepenos). It can be served open-faced or folded in half. When the first hot bite passes your lips, be prepared for a flavor explosion –  especially when you add a puckering of freshly …

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Celebrate Earth Day with a DIY “Local Cheese Platter” & Wine

Can you hear that sound? It’s the Earth Day Bell, ringing, ringing, ringing. Ringing for peace. Ringing for love. Ringing for this world of ours. Imagine a world without the scent of gasoline, where people don’t use 5 paper towels after washing their hands, where we put as many resources back into our earth as we take out of it. And then imagine no one bickering, arguing, yelling, shoving – not when one a guy lets his girl down, not when she lets him down; not when we’re scared, hungry, tired. It’s a hard thing to imagine. But Earth day invites us to do exactly that – and imagining is the first step to realizing a new future. What is Earth Day? In it’s most simple form: Earth Day is when people from nearly every country in the world spend one day a year honoring our beautiful Earth and the concept of peace. The Earth Day Bell was first heard in Japan, but now many countries include the ringing as part of their celebrations. “Earth …

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Go Global with 8 Edible Hiding Spots for your Easter Eggs

An Easter Tradition Easter Eggs are a thing in our house. We dye them. We decorate them. We gobble them up in two’s (it’s funny how a purple or green shell can make an ordinary egg taste eggstraordinary). When I was little Mom hid these boiled treats in the yard and, after we found them we ate them, still-warm from the sun. Today plastic eggs have taken over – probably because of one too many tummy aches after an overly hot Easter. But the kids don’t seem to notice; they scramble to collect these plastic shells, cracking them open to reveal stickers, coins, and candy. Each year the plastic eggs become more elaborate. Now they aren’t simply eggs, they’re monkeys or giraffes, baseballs or footballs. It’s fun, yes, but also starting to feel a bit… gimmicky. In the spirit of getting back to basics – to those real Easter Eggs of my childhood, I considered safe ways I could “hide” eggs for my daughter to find. Since it was 84F last week I knew the back yard …

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Celebrate Name Yourself Day with Nigerian Fried Rice

This Shall Not Die In Yoruba culture, in southwestern Nigeria and Southern Benin, the naming of babies is of the utmost importance – one that the Yoruba people believe will help determine their child’s future – their fate. That’s how a baby might come to be named Kokumo, or “This Shall Not Die.” I’ll be honest, the first time I imagined a baby with the word “die” in their name, I got the chills. But Kokuma is an optimistic, prayerful name. A wish for their child’s well-being – not some morbid statement. Today, in honor of international Name Yourself Day (April 8) I’d like to explore if we can find such power in our names – whether or not where we end up in life can be manifest through clear and purposeful intention repeated like mantra, with something as basic as our very own names. If it is true, then the meaning and sentiment of our names can have a big influence on who we are and what we do with our lives. So we should choose them …

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5 DIY Gardening Gifts for the Global Foodie

I’m already Gone Herbs are heaven. A few clippings of lemongrass into a pot of pho, some rosemary in a ball of bread dough, or  a sprinkling of cilantro over rice and I’m transported to another place entirely. Another continent. I don’t even have to eat the herbs – I can shut my eyes and breathe in their aroma and … ahhhh… I’m already gone. It doesn’t help that I’ve been digging in the garden for these last couple of weeks… early spring is my favorite time of year because anything is possible. Everything is about to take off and grow! A world of flavor Imagine giving your friends an herb starter plant from every continent so they can experience some of the edible, craveable bounty the world has to offer? Whenever they take clippings of those herbs and add them to their meals they’ll be eating their way around the world –  an easy way to make their lives a little happier and tastier. Yes, there are herbs from every continent. At the end of …

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