We made a quick trip up to San Francisco last weekend with my brother and some friends to celebrate my husband’s birthday. We had such a great time, and discovered such great spots I thought I would share with you an easy way to make the most out of a trip there. We flew up Saturday morning, returned Sunday evening, and even though it sounds like a super quick trip we had plenty of time to make it a fabulous visit.
We checked in to our hotel around 10am and then headed straight across the street to the Ferry Building. On Saturdays, the famers market is going on, and it is not to be missed. It’s the perfect place to pick up a Bluebottle Coffee, a few Oysters at Hog Island’s pop-up shop because why not, and even some cheese toast from Cowgirl Creamery Sidekick. Now this cheese toast is not just any ordinary cheese toast. It is made to order right in front of you, as they heat up a giant wheel of raclette cheese until it’s bubbly and slightly browning on the top, then the wheel is tipped over and poured over your toasts. Served along side homemade pickles and pickled onions. Um yes, it’s completely amazing.
Next we headed over to the Mission district to check out all the great shops over there. A standout for me was Paxton Gate. The shop is full of curiosities and DIY terrarium supplies. There is even a giant unicorn to greet you at the door. Yes this is a must.
From there we walked to Foreign Cinema for brunch. The food was great, and the space is really neat. The poached eggs over duck confit was to die for.
From here we needed a little pick me up so we walked to Dandelion Chocolate, to order from their chocolate milk bar. It’s a great place to get a chocolate infused coffee or in my case I ordered the almond, cinnamon chocolate horchata. It was beyond!
Late night we had drinks at the Tipsy Pig. They make the most amazing drink there with fresh strawberries called Strawberry Fields. Served in a mason jar, it is the most perfect drink. So there you have it, a day in San Francisco, jam packed with the perfectly curated activities. Enjoy!
My all time favorite thing to serve while entertaining is a charcuterie plate. I am constantly trying to create something new and exciting, so here are a few of my latest ideas. This is perfect for any party, gathering, or on a large scale it would be divine for a wedding.
photo via The Avid Eater // Photographer Nicole Franzen // Food Stylist Lauren LaPenna
I have been making a really big effort to meal plan for the week. To be honest some weeks are better then others but I find the weeks that I do meal plan I end up eating yummier, more fabulous dishes. Here are a few recipes on my radar for next week.
Brussels sprout bacon bean quesadilla with blue cheese dip
Gluten free apple & greek yogurt pancakes
Carrot and coconut soup
Do any of you meal plan? Share your tips with us!
I was looking at the huge pile of zucchinis we had from our CSA basket, thinking what can I do with these that everyone would just love? I came up with these super easy zucchini chips. They are so simple, and so delicious. They work for a snack, for an appetizer when you are having impromptu guests, or along side dinner. Your kids will love these I swear! And so will you!
Something my girlfriends and I have been talking about a lot is where to find inspiration and recipes for family meals. I promised them I would share my favorite resources, so here they are! Sometimes I find myself following the recipes word for word, sometimes I adapt them to fit ingredients I already have. Either way you are in for a big session of mouthwatering inspirations right now…
Roost is a fabulous resource, and the recipes are organized by season, which I love!
My latest obsession Oh She Glows is packed full of ideas like make ahead veggie burgers, and yummy sugar free sweets.
Gastrawnomica is fabulous and also has very innovative raw vegan sugarless desserts.
Pure Mamas has some really fun ideas and the photos are divine.
The Diva Dish, healthy living with a touch of sass, lives up to it’s name. Brilliant!
Last but not least, the beloved Camille Styles has the most amazing recipes!! Hope these resources help inspire you to make healthy, whole food dinners. Would love to hear what you try! xoxo
It always encourages me and helps motivate me when I learn about people like Helene of French Foodie Baby. As I was feeding miss Piper her favorite new food discovery, fresh figs and blue cheese, I realized Helene’s mention of “a new normal” was not only exciting but I think possible. Here is a blurb from her great post : “I guess my point is that by practicing this in your home with your family, by giving thought to mindful eating, making it a parenting priority to give your children a lifelong love of a good meal, by embracing the process of cooking as something that ultimately, and in many different ways, makes our lives and that of our families better, by not giving up in the face of societal pressures, you are part of this movement as well. Your children might just consider any other way to nourish oneself an abnormality.” I love that she mentions societal pressures, because those are definitely my biggest obstacles. But knowing that what you are doing for you and your family is invaluable to their health and well being makes it worth it. I hope you will be inspired to try a few new recipes with your family this week like these delicious fig bites.
To make these fig bites cut the top step off the figs. Slice an “x” on the top and then use your fingers to pinch the sides of the figs to open it like a flower. Place a bit of soft blue cheese such as Cambozola inside and serve immediately or even better, bake them for a few minutes so the cheese gets nice and oozy! Enjoy!
One of my favorite kitchen gadgets is my food dehydrator. I do most of my dehydrating in the spring and summer as the fruits are my favorite. Dried peaches…yum! I have been trying to do more veggies as well. My most recent veggie success are these delicious tomatoes. They are so super easy too!
Start by slicing your ripe tomatoes 1/4″ thick. Toss with olive oil, salt and garlic powder. Cherry tomotoes are also super yummy this way. Dehydrate for about 9 hours. If you don’t have a dehydrator, try slow roasting them in your oven on the lowest temp. Enjoy!
I had such a fun time cooking with Piper this weekend I just had to share. I was inspired by this recipe for Apricot Pecan Breakfast bars, to create something that we could have on hand for an easy breakfast. Piper loves anything in cupcake form and recently began helping me cook. It’s such a fun thing for us to do together.
These are great to cook with the kids. I measure things out, then she dumps them in the bowls and stirs everything around. Then, the best part, she gets to lick the spoon! I have such fond memories of doing this with my grandmother. The key is to make something delicious and healthy. These are the perfect breakfast. They have fruits, nuts, antioxidants, oats, and they taste delicious!!
The bananas and dates act as the sweetener, so there is no need to add sugars of any kind!
With the abundance of gluten-free and vegan blogs & recipes out there now, it really gives Passover so many new possibilities. There are still the staples that are my grandmother’s recipes like her harroset and Mayeena or Matzah Brie but new foods definitely can find a place at the cedar don’t you think? Here are a few of my favorites to try…
From the top: Broccoli & Black Bean Salad // frozen Banana Raspberry muffins // potato pancakes with poached eggs
Cucumber Noodles in Peanut Sauce // Whole Grain Matzah