- Health & Nutrition
Over the last few years, the classic deli sandwich has been through a major overhaul as we strive to create nutritious yet satisfying ways to reinvent this American staple. At the store, as I read the labels on many of these common household condiments, meats and breads, I quickly discovered a plethora of hidden sugars, salt, nitrates, antibiotics and even growth hormones. Bad, bad, 1000 times BAD!
My journey began with the basics, finding reliable sources for high quality bread, cheese and meat. Once I found a healthy source for these, I decided to explore my choices for delicious condiments and greens to create a sandwich that was truly Voovacious!Read More →
This is one of my favorite go-to recipes. I marinate the fish and make the edamame/wasabi spread a day in advance to let the flavors mingle and get friendly with each other. This wonderfully fresh appetizer can be served over sesame crackers, fried wontons, cucumber slices or tucked into endive leaves. You can also make a perfect meal by serving the marinated sashimi over a bed of mâche (lamb’s lettuce) leaves and frisée lettuce, torn into bite-size pieces, accompanied by a few slices of avocado.Read More →
We are blessed to have not one, but two Meyer lemon trees in our yard. As the days grow shorter in late autumn, the yellow orbs begin to deepen in color and look like bright seasonal ornaments stealthfully hiding among the deep green foliage. With the passing of each winter day, the lemons grow sweeter, and knowing this makes me feel warm right down to my toes.Read More →
My Grandmother was always in the kitchen cooking up something wonderful. As I recall, even the couch in her house smelled like a perfectly pleasant blend of fresh-baked cookies and thick-cut bacon. (I know that sounds weird, but it was absolutely the bees-knees as a kid!)Read More →
Meyer Lemon Picatta is exquisitely divine and easy to prepare. The light, rich sweetness of the lemon sauce in juxtaposition to the salty capers and deep tones of white sage, make this a Splendiferous ‘comfort meal’ to be shared with friends and family. Serve it with fresh pasta, herb-roasted potatoes or lemon-rice pilaf, accompanied by steamed asparagus, broccoli, brussels sprouts or try our Rainbow Carrots, Haricot Verts & Caramelized Shallots.Read More →
This brunch is our daughter’s very favorite lazy-weekend breakfast. We buy fresh bagels the afternoon prior so we can wake up in the morning ready for a truly pleasurable, relaxed meal. I usually get the variety bagels that have a bit of everything on top, rather than a specific topping like plain or sesame seed. It’s important to locate a good source for Wild-Caught Smoked Salmon (NOT Farmed Salmon) to ensure high quality lox, without the unnatural addition of toxins, anti-biotics, dyes, or growth hormones present. I usually add fresh chopped dill, a bit of cracked black pepper, and freshly squeezed lemon juice to the top of the lox for an extra bit of flavor. The bagels are accompanied by a platter of freshly sliced organic English cucumber, ripe avocado, thinly sliced red onions, lemons, and cilantro with a small bowl of capers.Read More →
Rainbow carrots bring a marvelous splash of deep, bright color to any meal. The hues of purple, red, deep orange and yellow are complimented perfectly with the bright green verts (French green beans). This colorful, crunchy medley paired with the deep tones of the caramelized shallots and browned butter make for a lovely sidecar to any meal!Read More →
One of my very favorite morning meals is the Nut-Butter Berry Banana Smoothie. (Oh behave yourselves naughty monkeys…!) I refer to this smoothie as ‘B3Z’ (pronounced bee-3-zeeeeh!) since this name includes the word ‘Bee’, and I just love, love, love bees!!! So, I prefer to call it B3Z!Read More →
We have enjoyed this salad served both as a pre-dinner salad or an entree on a balmy summer night. The tart flavor of the endive is perfectly balanced by the rich, deep tones of blue cheese in this salad delight.Read More →
Dean & Deluca
607 St. Helena Hwy S, Saint Helena, CA 94574 (Just off highway 29!)
After our wonderful tasting experience at Prager Winery & Port Works, we stopped into Dean & Deluca for a bit of epicurean perusing. Dean & DeLuca is a chain of fabulous gourmet grocery stores for foodies. The first store was established in New York City in September 1977, in the SoHo district, a rather upscale area in lower Manhattan.
Known for it’s unique selection of meats, cheese, freshly baked bread, and of course, the vast array of gourmet chocolate truffles, this is the perfect place to pick up all the fixins for a decadent picnic in between visiting wineries.Read More →
¿Cómo se llama Mr. Llama? I had a wonderful conversation with a lovely llama at Harley’s Goat Farm in the charming coastal town of Pescadero recently. After swapping stories and goat jokes with this wooly sentry, Brian and I had the pleasure of attending a 6-course farm dinner in the loft of the old barn on the property. The fresh, delicious cuisine, the ambiance of candlelight, and meeting new friends, all made this an exceptional experience! 🐐🍷🎑Read More →
Embrace a diet rich in every spectrum of the rainbow for an ultimate beauty pick-me-up for your hair, skin and nails. Fruits & vegetables are packed with antioxidants along with other vitamins, nutrients, fiber, and minerals that play a huge role in achieving beauty through optimum health.Read More →
We went to the 64th Annual Sausalito Art Festival over the Labor Day 3-day weekend. Known as the ‘Premiere Waterfront Art Festival’, the event brings the best of unique, refined artistic talent together with music, great food and wine. It also happens to be one of the most prestigious shows in the country, gathering talent from around the globe.
After an amazing day of fun, saturated with the brilliant talent we had taken in at the festival, we were greeted by the beautiful and iconic Golden Gate Bridge. As we left the Marin tunnel to pop back to the San Francisco Peninsula, I couldn’t help but revel in our glorious day!Read More →
There is nothing better during the hot summer months than cool black beans doing the samba with crunchy red peppers and rich, buttery avocado, all dressed up in a cilantro-lime vinaigrette. This recipe was inspired by a Mexican salad made at the first restaurant I ever worked at in my teen years. I never did get the exact recipe, so I decided to develop my own version based upon the dreamy recollection of my seasoned and discerning palate.Read More →
3522 Silverado Trail North, St. Helena, CA 94574, Phone: (800) 622-2206
We headed North on the Silverado Trail for a tasting at Rombauer Vineyards. After driving up the curvy, narrow road to the winery, we were greeted by a few colorfully painted cow sculptures and gorgeous landscaped gardens. The winery is located atop a sunny knoll surrounded by giant trees that offer the perfect shield from the bustling valley below. As we stepped from the car, a tranquil, quiet peacefulness overcame our senses and the playful sound of songbirds danced through the air.Read More →
When attempting to photograph a troop of Rhesus Macaque monkeys in the wild, always keep a watchful eye on the dominant male of the harem…
This naughty little monkey climbed my long braid just like it was a jungle vine and mounted my head, while whooping loudly. I’d swear all the female monkeys in the troop were laughing with delight.Read More →
I developed the Le Voov! Lox Scramble with my Mother’s mentality prevailing. Clean out the older food in the refrigerator by Sunday! We served an appetizer requiring lox at a party the previous day, and I wanted to make good use of it quickly so it would maintain it’s freshness.Read More →
The addition of a small quantity of Gruyere cheese makes for a deep blending of flavors both bright and rich in this lovely scramble.
We visited Elephant Butte Reservoir located on the Rio Grande in New Mexico, just 5-short miles (8.0 km) north of the quaint little town of Truth or Consequences. The name “Elephant Butte” refers to the volcanic core making up the island at the center of the reservoir, which is said to resemble the shape of an elephant reclining on it’s side. The reservoir and the surrounding land are part of the largest state park in the state of New Mexico, Elephant Butte Lake State Park…Read More →
Massive Mandala On The Beach!
As we were driving along the coast, somewhere between Half Moon Bay & Santa Cruz, when we came across this huge mandala created on a sandy beach.
A mandala (Sanskrit: मण्डल, circle) is a geometric concentrically structured pattern representing the cosmos or the universe. In many spiritual traditions the creation of a mandala is a practice to invite focus, meditation or an induction into trance state. Mandalas are also used to establish a sacred space.Read More →