Wednesday, April 16, 2014


Long before being the title to (let's admit it) one of the awesomest Disney/Pixar productions of all time, Ratatouille was a delicious French dish.

Made with sun-gorged vegetables like eggplants, zucchini, bell peppers and tomatoes, it is traditionally served in the South of France or Provence. Not unlike curry, chili or lasagna, there are as many recipes for it as there are cooks.

My favorite way to have it is with buttery, creamy scrambled eggs or cold on a piece of sourdough toast. Delicious!

Here's my recipe.

INGREDIENTS (for 4 people as a side dish):
- 1 large eggplant
- 1 zucchini
- 1 bell pepper (any color)
- 1 bucket of cherry tomatoes (or 3 medium tomatoes)
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 1 onion
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 sprig of thyme
- 1/4 cup of olive oil, reserve 1 tbsp on the side
- salt and pepper to taste

- dice the eggplant (about 1/2 inch), salt lightly to draw water out and pat dry with paper towels

- dice the zucchini, pepper, onion and garlic and halve the cherry tomatoes (if using medium tomatoes, cut in eight)

- in a hot pan over medium heat, fry the dried eggplant in the olive oil until golden and reserve in a bowl

- in the remaining tbsp of olive oil, fry the onion and garlic over medium heat until translucent and fragrant, then add the zucchini and pepper and fry for 2-3 minutes over medium heat

- add the cooked eggplants, tomatoes, thyme and bay leaf, cover and let simmer over low heat for 30 minutes

- after 30 minutes, uncover and let simmer for another 15-20 minutes over low heat, stirring often

- serve warm alongside eggs, fish or any meat (goes really well with chicken and pork), room temperature or cold, as a salad or on toast. Ratatouille is delicious any way you eat it!
- enjoy!!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Mango, snap peas and grilled chicken rice salad

Now that spring is making an appearance, I find myself craving healthy, lighter meals. This mango, snap peas and grilled chicken salad is just that.

This is a perfect moderately low-carb meal, with tons of vitamins from the mango and fresh peas, protein from the lean chicken and tang from the lime, cilantro-infused oil and Sriracha hot sauce.
Fresh and crisp tasting, I make it even healthier with brown rice.

Try it and tell me what you think!

INGREDIENTS (for 4 people):
- 4 cups of leftover cooked brown rice, at room temperature
- 1 chicken breast, sliced very fine
- fresh snap peas
- 1 ripe mango
- 1 lime
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- garlic, ginger and cilantro-infused oil (to taste, click here for the recipe)
- Sriracha hot sauce
- fresh cilantro for decorating (not pictured)

- blanch the snap peas in boiling salted water for about 3 minutes and stop the cooking by transferring into a bowl of iced water

Note: I like them with a nice crunch, so I only blanch them but by all means, feel free to cook them longer if you like them softer
- in a skillet, brown the chicken in a splash of cilantro oil until cooked through and golden

- deglaze the juices from the skillet with the soy sauce and reserve the liquid

Note: this is an important step. There is SO much flavor packed in these little golden nuggets you mustn't throw this out!
- dice the mango

- combine all the ingredients in a serving bowl

- add the lime juice, flavored soy sauce, cilantro oil and a few splashes of hot sauce

- enjoy!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Garlic, ginger and cilantro oil

This delicious flavored oil is amazing on top of salads (to die for on an Asian-inspired cabbage slaw), to marinate chicken or pork as well as a finishing oil over grilled shrimp and scallops.

Try it, you'll love it!

- a bunch of fresh cilantro
- 1 inch of fresh ginger
- a few cloves of garlic
- extra virgin olive oil

- peel, slice and bruise the ginger and garlic and chop the cilantro

- put all the ingredients in a glass bottle and cover with olive oil until everything is submerged

- store in the fridge and marinate for 1 week before using
Note: this oil will keep for 3-4 weeks in the fridge