For a lack of summer – Octopus and green tomato carpaccio

Octopus and green tomato carpaccioAs I have stated many times before, one of my favorite things to do is sit on nice, sunny terrasses, sharing a few glasses of wine on a sunny afternoon along with some seafood, in good company. Mexico city has plenty of these kind of places, and the weather is usually mild and sunny and all around perfect for it. But this year we had about two weeks of this… the rest has been intermittently rainy (and don’t get me wrong, I do love rainy weather, but nothing spoils a good carpaccio like having it flooded) and sparingly cold.  So those sunny afternoons have been quite scarce… and so has been the time spent in the kitchen making ceviche or salads. But nevertheless, I’ll share with you this delicious recipe; an octopus and green tomato carpaccio, with a delicious avocado and spearmint purée. If you can’t have it outside, with a glass of rosé (as would be ideal) it’s still delicious, fresh, and light. A perfect hors d’oeuvre, or a good entrée. It’s an original dish, and the purple and green ingredients look striking together. And the best part, it takes about 15 minutes to have it ready! And you can keep it in the fridge if you make it ahead of time. Tempted? Read more for the recipe! Continue reading

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Easily satisfied – Artichoke and spinach grilled cheese sandwich

Artichoke and spinach grilled cheese sandwich

Lately I’ve been sick every other week. I’m used to having a rough winter when it comes to the flu, but this year I started in October! And I’m sick of being sick. But you know what else gets old after your third round of stay in bed the whole weekend? Chicken soup. In spite of all its glorious, warming, nutritious, homey goodness, you can actually find yourself not wanting to see another bowl of the stuff for quite a while. But that doesn’t mean you’re over comfort food. Oh no. That only means that it’s time to up the comfort food. So as soon as I felt strong enough this weekend to get my butt out of the house I went grocery shopping (because that’s what normal people do, trust me) and I ran into some delicious artichoke hearts. All ready and cut up and tasty. Screaming “please turn me into grilled cheese! please!”. And because artichoke heart screams are really hard to ignore, that’s exactly what I did. And because the spinach, jocoque (labneh), olive oil and garlic powder in my house were surely going to protest, I bought a big loaf of garlic bread to put them all together over butter and grill.
Talk about comfort food! Interested? Read more for the recipe. Continue reading

Get your healthy on – Cherry tomato and cottage cheese tartines

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This isn’t an actual recipe..I think. At least I don’t think something as easy to make as this can be called a recipe…it’s more of a putting together of ingredients. But since it’s something I eat almost twice a week, every week, and it’s beyond delicious, I thought I might as well share it with the rest of the world (I’ve shared it with my friends and they’ve also gotten on the twice a week wagon). The reasons for its greatness are as follows:
1) It’s incredibly healthy: cottage cheese, tons of proteins for when you don’t really want to have egg whites for breakfast again. Low in fat and high in calcium.
2) It’s delicious: sweet cherry tomatoes, fresh basil, strong olive oil, pepper and crusty bread. Feeling mediterranean yet?
3) Couldn’t be easier or quicker to make: Just pile everything on top of each other.
See?
And if you happen to have a cherry tomato plant in full production (as I do…yay! ) then you’ll want to make this even more. Especially when basil at the supermarket costs about 40 cents (or 6 pesos) for a huge, fresh, aromatic, bunch. So go on and get your delicious healthy on!

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Full of surprises – High protein peanut butter “granola”

proteing peanut butter granola

From reading this blog, you might not think I like to eat healthy stuff and work out. But you’d be wrong. While I might be the first one to get on the nutella wagon and have absolutely no remorse in eating pasta with rustic bread, I also love healthy foods. Fresh ingredients, raw veggies with delicious dressings and lean fishes rock my boat as easily as any cookie recipe. Which are all the things I like to eat on regular days. (By regular days, I mean those days in which I don’t eat out, cook for friends, or make cakes, three days a week? Guilty.) And my absolute favorite meal along those lines, is breakfast. Because there’s nothing more satisfying or rewarding than eating a delicious, healthy and filling bowl of greek yogurt with just ripe bananas and peanut butter and oats topping after an exhausting work out. So that’s why I’m sharing with you this delicious recipe…because even if you’re not a health-lets-eat-gazillions-of-proteins freak, you’ll still love it and want to use it as a topping for any meal, or a snack, anytime of the day. Because who doesn’t love peanut butter and chocolate and oats all together?. I know, no one. And the even greater thing about this recipe, it’s the easiest thing in the world! Just mix everything in one bowl. That’s why its not an actual granola, there’s no baking or syrup making involved! Got you hooked yet? Read more for the recipe. Continue reading

Très Français – French green bean salad with Boursin cheese

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I know that I shouldn’t even dare show my face around here after having disappeared for so long… almost two months! But since my holidays post-christmas have been so utterly quiet I finally have the time to be back in the kitchen, cooking, taking pictures and posting. So to ease back into the petitedecadence-ing, I’ll start with a very simple recipe….but an incredibly delicious one! It’s also very french, since its main ingredient are french beans… also known as haricots vertes. (Actually, I have no idea why french beans are called so, I’ll have to look that up.) But I also used garlic and herbs (the classic) boursin. If you don’t know boursin cheese, or don’t have it available around you, you could use any other kind of gournay cheese, or you can make something similar right at home by simply adding finely minced garlic and a variety of fresh herbs to your favorite cream cheese, or even better, homemade cream cheese.
This salad is seriously easy to make and will go well with pretty much anything, from fish to meat to a main dish all by itself, if you’re feeling like a light meal. Serve it with a couple warm slices of rustic bread and a dry white wine, and you’ve got yourself a delicious entrée.
Read more for the recipe. Continue reading

Do it your way – Spearmint and lime gravlax on labneh and chives

Gravlac on labneh and chives

You know how people are always telling you how you’ve gotta do things your way and live your own life and be your own man (woman!!) and then down the road you’ll be horribly succesful and get absolutely all that you desire and the world will bow at your feet? Well I’ve been trying to do that all my life and I have yet to see even my very spoiled dog do any bowing. Not even a curtsy, seriously. But I have been doing all the things that I enjoy and bring me peace and satisfaction, and even if its hard at times in the end it’s always rewarding. I’ve said it once, I’ll say it twice; DO WHAT YOU LOVE. I don’t mean to be preachy, but seriously, I think it’s the most important thing in the world! I can only imagine being 70 and looking back…I wonder what I’ll want to tell myself? I’m glad I have all this money in the bank or…I’m glad I ate gravlax and spent my bucks in riding and cooking and gardening and buying oil paints every time I felt like it? Ok I’ll be frank, I’ll probably want to tell myself both. But I’m sure I’ll get there! Everyone says so right? And we all know that if everyone says so then it must be true. And plus, even Frank Sinatra sang about it. So that’s what I tell myself every time I go to the market and I see a huge salmon fillet, just waiting to be played with. And I did play my way; I put a little twist on the classic Nordic dish. I made my gravlax with loads and loads of spearmint (’cause its so much milder than dill) and lime rinds, because those three together even when non-gravlaxed make a great combo, imho. And when you put it over pumpernickel and a deliciously creamy labneh sauce, (also called jocoque, aka strained yoghurt) rich in chives and a drop of lime on top…..well you’ll certainly be glad you’re doing it your way. Don’t lie, you want to read more for the recipe, right?

(Note: you could also substitute the labneh for homemade cheese!)

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Sour Cream Rosemary Potatoes

Rosemary and sour cream baked potatoes

There are some things in life that are always good; finding unexpected money in one of your drawers, receiving a call from someone you miss, having warm feet….it’s a long list. And on that list (at least mine), potatoes will always have a place. I think I can say, with certainty, that I’ve never declined a good potato dish. In any of it’s variants. They’re just so good and go with everything…and there are so many ways you can cook them. They make any ingredient shine. But there’s a few  ingredients that will always be glory to me when baked alongside this lovely tubers: cream, butter, rosemary, and cheese. So here goes a version using a couple of those; rosemary and sour cream. It’s an incredibly fast and easy dish, and it’s also clean. You’ll only need the chopping board, knife, and dish where you’ll be baking. And the result is so good you’ll hardly believe it was that simple. Read more for the recipe.

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