5 Ingredient Almond Rosemary Crackers with Fig Tapenade

5 ingredient rosemary almond crackers

This past week I have spent a generous amount of my free time in the kitchen and I ain’t mad about it. I flew up to San Francisco last Friday with my boyfriend to visit my dear friends K&C who recently moved and we enjoyed a lovely dinner at home together on Sunday night. The evening began with a trip to a really cute local market called Oceana in Pacifica where we gathered ingredients and snapchatted away about some superfood ice cream we discovered (username: CaraCarin). Immediately after getting home we got to work, Christina on the crackers and me on a pear chutney. It was just like old times and I couldn’t help but feel nostaligic as we laughed and sipped on red wine together in the kitchen again.

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Holiday Kale Salad with Fennel, Sweet Potato, Apple and Pomegranate

Winter Kale Salad 058 #vegan #glutenfree #kale

Over the last 9 years I have been living apart from my immediate family spending 8 of them in Los Angeles and 1 in Melboune, Australia. There have been many years where I haven’t made it home for the holidays for various reasons including school, work, boyfriends or because sometimes going home for the holiday’s is difficult. Like many, my parents are divorced and figuring out which parent to spend what holidays with isn’t always easy. On the upside, so many people I know and love in LA also don’t go home for the holidays so there is always a friends-giving or gathering of the like so I’ve never felt like I missed out. However this Thanksgiving I am traveling with my dad back to Chicago to see the extended family- cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents. My traditional Italian family is not very vegan or vegetarian friendly so I have been thinking a lot about what I want to contribute to the meal and this kale salad recipe is a serious contender. 
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Market Vegetables with Spicy Pesto, Almond Crumble and Poached Eggs {Gluten Free, Paleo, Vegetarian}

Market Vegetables with Pesto and Poached Eggs 020Who decided that eggs were only for breakfast? This agreement that we have as a society that certian foods are only meant to be eaten at certian times has always perplexed me. Does any one else find it odd that at certain restaurants they stopped serving breakfast at 11am? Seriously, its not like the ingredients aren’t still in the cold storage. And why is it that when we have pancakes for dinner we sort of feel a little naughty?

I say to hell with it! You should be able to eat whatever, whenever.

So I made this for the bf and I for dinner.

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Ensalada de Fruta con Chile – Mexican Fruit Salad

Ensalada de Fruitas con Chili

If you have driven around Los Angeles you are likely familiar with the rainbow umbrellas that shade the fruit cart vendors found on the sidewalks of many busy intersections in the city. At first, I was hesitant to try fruit from these vendors but one afternoon several years ago a friend and I have just finished hiking Runyon Canyon. He asked if I wanted to hit up the fruit man. “What the hell is the fruit man” I asked? I’ve mentioned before on this blog how I am a referral junky, and if someone I trust vouches for something then I will most likely give it a try regardless of what I might have thought about it. It wasn’t until this sunny afternoon in LA that I discovered Ensalada de Fruta con Chile or Mexican fruit salad with chili and lime juice. To this day, it remains one of my favorite things about this city. There are few things more refreshing in the summer heat than a $5 bag a fresh fruit. The assortment can included everything from watermelon, cantolope, jicama, coconut, cucumber, mango, and pineapple. These vendors are part of the magic of this city and I wanted to recreate the recipe and pay respects to one of the most beloved aspects of the city of angles.

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Grilled Corn, Watermelon and Arugula Salad {Vegan, Gluten Free}

Watermelon, Grilled Corn and Arugula Salad 6Over Memorial Day weekend I went to Arizona to be with my family and I always chuckly at the concerned texts from my mother as she tries to figure out how she is going to feed me while I am there. Like being vegan is a far reaching waste land where all that exists to eat is broccoli, carrots and romaine lettuce. Remove meat and cheese from the equation and she becomes paralyzed at the thought of cooking, frantically texting me the day before I arrive. I’ve been on a plant based diet for five years and eat a wider array of foods now then I ever did when I was an omnivore.  Eating this way forces you to expand while within the seasons and whats available. Meat is available year round but fruits and vegetables are not, coming and going as the seasons change (or atleast they should without the overuse of pesticides, and forced ripening). You also have to eat a wide array of foods to make sure you are getting all the nutrients you need, too. Its a win win in my mind.

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Collard Green Wrap with Black Bean and Corn Salsa with Avocado {Vegan}

Processed with VSCOcam with t1 preset

As a full time working girl and full time real foodie I am always on the lookout for quick, easy and healthy recipes that I can toss together for lunch. This recipe fits the bill perfectly. I used the recipe for corn and black bean salsa from my burrito bowl, and added in a handful of shredded carrots because I had them on hand. I lightly steamed the collards to make them easier to work with, spread some Just Mayo on, added loads of avocado, cause duh, and perfecto: a healthy, vegan lunch that is full of nutrients like protien, fiber, carbs, and healthy fats! Literally this is so well rounded and insanely delicious!

Collard Greens Wrap with Corn and Black Bean Salsa and Avocado {Vegan}

May 29, 2015
Serves 1-2 People
Prep time
Cook Time


  • 2
    Large leaves of Collard
  • 1
    ripe avocado
  • 2 Tablespoons
    Vegan Mayo
  • 2 Cups
    Corn and Black Bean Salsa


  1. Prepare your corn and black bean salsa. The link is up above.

    Lightly steam the collard greens for 1-2 minutes. Fill up a large soup pan with 2 inches of water and bring to a boil. Add your leaves in, stem side down and cover with a lid. Check after 1 minute. They should be a bright green and very flimsy. If needed, let steam for a minute longer.

    Then using a sharp knife, remove the stem, and cut the large leaf into to two pieces. Overlap the middle of the leaves about a 1/2 inch.

    Spread 1 tablespoon of vegan mayo over the lower third of the collard leaf.

    Cut your avocado in half, and slice it into thin pieces. I put half of an avocado into each collard wrap. Laying the slices over eachother in the middle of the leaves.

    Then add 1 cup for you corn and black bean salsa over the avocado.

    Roll up from the bottom, fold in the sides, and continue to roll all the way up like a burrito.

    Secure with a tooth pick if necessary and slice in half.

    Repeat for the second collard wrap.

Nutrient Dense Green Smoothie

nutrient dense green smoothie

To be completely honest with you all, I don’t drink smoothies that often. I’d like to say that a green smoothie or green juice is a daily habit of mine, but it is not. That isn’t to say they wont be in the future because I do love them, but currently I prefer eating my food to drinking it which means I make them about once a week. Making them as healthy as possible while still tasting delicious is always my focus with most things food related. I think that is probably fairly obvious. Anyways, I love the idea of putting easily digestable greens into my body making me healthy and beautiful from the inside out.

I’ve tried many combinations of fruit and veggies to find one that really works well, and I am in love with this recipe. I’ve tested it enough to know that it is pretty fail safe, and you can rest assured you are getting in heaps of micro nutrients for cell regeneration and optimal health without having to drink something that is barely palatable . Can I get an amen?

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Shaved Asparagus Salad with Citrus, Edamame and Pine Nuts

shaved asparagus salad5

I really love how seasonal this salad is. It makes me all excited about spring and shaved asparagus is a fun twist on the way I normally eat them– whole spears, sauteed or roasted. Although it is considered normal, I can’t get over how weird it is that asparagus makes your pee smell funny. I mean, like does anything else have this pheonomenan except maybe drinking too much coffee? Rhetorical. Basically, our bodies convert asparagusic acid into sulfur-containing chemicals that smell and pass through the body naturally when we pee. This might be enough to keep some poople at bay, but alas, I love asparagus and will eat them regardless.

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Lettuce Taco Wraps with Mango Slaw, and Cilantro-Basil Cashew Cream

Lettuce Tacos3

This past weekend I went out to Palm Sprimgs for the Coachella Music and Arts Festival. There is something about being in the desert that makes you feel so much further from Los Angeles than you really are. The energy is different, people are so relaxed and Palm Springs has never left the mid-century so it is an interior and architecture design inspiration mecca. I do have a point about tacos, so hang with me here. 🙂 Although, the line up was not filled with as many bands that I love as in past years there was still an abundance of fantastic music. Kanye came out during the Weeknd’s set and blew the lid of it, Odesza was a pheonominal, ACDC, although a one trick pony, does the trick really well, and Jack White made me love him because of how good of a live show he puts on. Other honorable mentions were Gorgon City, who’s live set at the Fonda a few months ago sounded way better, Ratatat was surprisingly on point, Kieza has wonderful stage presense, but questionable fashion choice and Brand New, a favorite of mine from when I was in my early teen years. Thumbs up to anyone who also loves Brand New!

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