4.2018

Zion Nat'l Park, Columbine

Inspired to appreciate real food and the joy of preparing it…

“I truly did enjoy myself at the Eat to Your Heart’s Content cooking class the other night. You both have inspired me toward a new appreciation not just for food, but for real food and the joy of preparing it. I look forward to attending and being a part of future classes co-taught by the two of you.” –J.R., Grass Valley


This lovely note arrived as an email, in reference to a recent class that I taught with Wendy Van Wagner of In the Kitchen cooking school. Our classes are now filling up within the first couple of weeks of them being posted, warranting additional classes to be put onto the schedule!

Romance! Food! LOVE!

My sweetie and I just savored the most divine meal — an early Valentine’s dinner — since he will be out of town on Monday. I wanted tonight to be special…and it surely was!

My winter CSA box was picked up last eve, rewarding me with a veggie array to create a masterpiece meal. I stopped at Nevada County Seafood on the way home from yoga this morning for two gorgeous, fresh-off-the-boat swordfish steaks.

Ok, here goes: I started with the massive amount of cauliflower greens, after removing them to reveal the luscious head that was nestled inside. To them, I added two giant handfuls of arugula for a quick saute with garlic chunks, in olive oil.

The cauliflower head was sliced thickly, rubbed with olive oil and sprinkled with salt and pepper and roasted for ten-ish minutes at 400 degrees.

I cut the CSA carrots into thick strips and briefly sauteed them in coconut oil with grated candied ginger. OH MY! This carrot concoction may become my new favorite veggie side dish. The combo of the coconut oil and its rich flavor with the sassiness of the ginger is simply amazing. I just made that dish up, by the way, as I was contemplating how this meal was going to come together. Brilliant!

A world-renowned chef gave me the instructions for the swordfish. Fish is one food that I struggle with in terms of knowing how to prepare it, and I rarely do cook it because of this. He assured me that rubbing it in olive oil and sprinkling it with salt and pepper, before broiling it for a few minutes on either side was the secret…and he was right. Thank you, Brian! Xoxo. I made a sauce of white wine, butter, capers, and fresh meyer lemon juice. Can I just tell you that the fish turned out to be restaurant quality?! Simply fab!

All of this was happening at the same time, so I was mindful about the what/when/how’s and completely enjoyed the time I spent creating this special dinner to share with my true love. This meal will be remembered by us for it’s beauty — so many colors, textures, and flavors: the fish was lovingly laid on top of the sauteed garlicky greens, over which the lemon-caper sauce was drizzled; the carrots nestled alongside in a gooey, delicious puddle of coconut-y ginger glaze, and the roasted cauliflower took its own proud place on our plates, standing tall in 3-D glory.

We ate slowly, enjoying each other and the spectacular flavors. Sigh. It was magic.

We’re nearly done digesting that gourmet meal. Dessert is planned for 8:30 PM, 30 minutes from now and 90 minutes from the completion of dinner (give or take a few moments of smooching). The piece de resistance will be a decadent chocolate sauce that is simply made by melting an organic dark chocolate bar and after it cools, adding in 1/2 cup of whipping cream. We’ll be dipping–with our fingers–juicy ripe slices of pear and mango into this sensuous sauce. Imagine it. Yes. 

"After thirty years of eating healthy foods and participating in regular, vigorous exercise, I was astounded to discover I have Coronary Artery Disease. In March of 2010, I had two stents placed in my Left Anterior Descending Artery- this was big. I consulted Robin Mallery, RN, knowing she is a local expert on Cardiac Rehabilitation. I especially respected her lifestyle of nutrition and physical fitness. Robin’s reassurance that I was doing many things correctly, and her instructions on how to fine-tune my program to deal with this life-threatening disease, was invaluable. Robin’s exquisite grasp of balancing traditional medicine with diet, exercise, relaxation and fun has helped me through this medical crisis". --Maiya Gralia, Licensed Clinical Social Worker and cross-country ski instructor and coach

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