Produce Junkie

Whenever I go on vacation I hit up the produce section of a nearby grocery store… where I buy way too much produce because it is cheap & super fresh. Or even better I get lucky & find a farmer’s stall.
Some of my platters from this week:

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Even enjoyed some dishes that I can see inspiring my future plates.

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Like this mushroom toast with arugula, parmesan, sautéed mushrooms & pesto smear.

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Or this fabulous cheese plate with jam,  fresh fruits, nuts & various crackers.

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This was a cooked beet salad with goat cheese,  micro greens & edible flowers that I had at a friend’s wedding.

“Get up & dance, get up & smile, get up & drink to the days that are gone in the shortest while” ~ Simon Fowler

I am a beverage lover! Flavoured waters, juices, cocktails, coffee & wine make my day.
I started flavouring my water because I know that I don’t drink enough of it & it’s important for health. Lucky for me my dad got me a funky water diffuser to take to work & the pilates studio.

20140407-215337.jpg squeeze of lemon with apple & strawberry slices.
I’ve been loving Bacardi’s pineapple coconut rum! It’s been popping up in most of my cocktails & has me excited for the beginnings of summer. I used it here:

20140407-215757.jpg Spiked mango lassi anyone?

20140407-232530.jpg or it’s perfect to add to gas station slushies for an adult slushie.
Or my other favourite is tequila from Mexico that I’m slowly savouring with individual cocktails from time to time.

20140407-215940.jpg Fresh juice (grape/strawberry & loquat/strawberry/orange) with tequila & white tea.

20140407-233159.jpg Green juice with basil & mint, mixed with pear vodka. Trying to play with savoury flavours in my cocktails thanks to the wonderful pineapple basil mojito I had in Las Vegas.

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Food Glorious Food #2 – #saladalldayeveryday & frozen yogurt!

I put salad on every plate I make, whether its breakfast, lunch or dinner. I think it pairs with everything & it makes me feel so much healthier eating veggies (raw or roasted) with every meal.

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Just noticed how many plates had burrata on them. Love burrata (mozzarella ball with a creamy center aka deliciousness!!)

New addiction downtown, we finally have a frozen yogurt Sunday store! Bermuda can be so behind the times! It’s been busy every time I drive by or go in. Crazy!

20131013-175922.jpg All the flavours I like are low-fat or non-fat so I don’t feel so guilty lol. & I love popping strawberry boobas in my mouth!

Constructing a salad (yes another post on salad lol)

So one of the things that should be known about me is that I can fixate on flavours & will eat them multiple days in a row. So with that, you must know that I’m still obsessing about this salad…

20130921-193536.jpg which I used as the inspiration for this salad last night.

Tonight I decided to do a “jumbled” version to more closely mimic the plate I got in Vegas at The Cut. I decided to take pics of every single step so that I could do another post on salad arranging but this time on free form as opposed to organized piles.

I have a ton of alfalfa sprouts so I wanted to make sure to use a lot of those, but didn’t want to put them on top & obstruct the view of all the ingredients.

20130921-194040.jpg So I decided to add them first, using a snake like pattern on the plate with the thought to add different greens in the curves.
Then I added the arugula (my current favourite green, absolutely love them with poached eggs).

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Next came the beet greens (I contemplated adding thin slices of beets as well but thought that I would just stick to using the greens & save the beets for roasting).

20130921-194415.jpg I cut the leaf part away from the stem & washed them separately. I cut the leaves in a thick chiffonade, & the stems on the bias.

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Then came the watercress that I bought this evening.

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Then 3 cheeses…

20130921-195401.jpg A soft local goat cheese, a chive onion cream cheese & a honey goat cheese.

Then came the fruit!

20130921-195833.jpg Forelle pear slices, red seedless grapes quartered, yellow tomatoes quartered (similar shapes, similar cuts to keep things from looking too disorganized) & blood orange segments.

I added a bit of coconut rice & miso glazed salmon leftovers from the restaurant where I work. For dressing I used some lime passion fruit vinaigrette from work & the rest of my vinaigrette from last night’s salad.

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20130921-200542.jpg A close up because it looks so good!

Deconstructed: Salad ~ memories of Vegas

I prefer salad composed of different piles of stuff as opposed to all jumbled because I love putting my individual bites together, creating different flavour profiles with each forkful & I find the organization more visually pleasing.
Had a salad last night with arugula, blood orange & goat cheese, & it made me think of this salad…

20130921-003301.jpg (which is a roasted red & yellow beet salad with goat cheese & blood oranges from The Cut = my favourite restaurant in Vegas).

So tonight my salad just had to have some beets to pair with the blood orange/arugula/goat cheese flavour combo. Unfortunately I didn’t have any roasted or pickled beets but I did have the beet greens which I used raw two ways to add in beet flavour.

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Clockwise from top right: arugula with beet stems, avocado with pink salt & bee pollen & Bragg’s sea kelp seasoning & pepper, then beet greens with yellow tomatoes & chia seeds, alfalfa sprouts with blood orange segments & honey goat cheese, & sliced forelle pear in the center. Vinaigrette: mustard, lemon, poppy seed dressing, buffalo sauce, & tangerine juice.

It was so yummy!! Tomorrow night I’m roasting beets! (Along with some Brussel sprouts) & will be adding to them to salads next week. What are you craving/making this weekend?

Food Art: Salad arranging

I was asked today to go into more detail about how I make my salads look so good… And I’m going to attempt to explain my process, but like anything creative it is hard to put into words because it is made with “feeling”.
Step one is plate selection. I prefer solid colours over patterns, and square plates over round. (Of course there are exceptions to every rule & I’ll show you a couple examples).

So tonight’s salad… It all began with a look in my fridge at what could be combined with a couple items I purchased on the way home. I bought chive & onion cream cheese, alfalfa sprouts, & “everything” ritz.

20130919-211749.jpg I used arugula I had in the fridge as my salad base, I like to bunch it up in one corner on my square plates, then I added red pepper & caramelized onion hummus to my plate, & blood orange segments & alfalfa sprouts to my arugula.

20130919-212750.jpg With circle plates I tend to pile my greens in the center & my various toppings around them.
For tonight’s salad, I thought yellow tomatoes would be a lovely counter point to the red flesh of the blood orange.

20130919-213544.jpg & since no salad is ruined by adding cheese (in this case honey goat cheese) or avocado… I added both!

Some exceptions to my plain plate preference (it’s funny because they were both taken at my friends house where I take food over & we picnic in her yard lol)

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I finished off my dinner plate with the cream cheese, ritz & a small portion of chicken stew from last night (although its mostly veg this evening lol).

20130919-215828.jpg I like to dress my avocado with a dash of something, & tonight it was Bragg’s sea kelp seasoning, pink Himalayan salt & pepper. Used a bit of leftover vinaigrette to dress my salad (buffalo sauce, honey mustard, lemon, & Bragg’s ACV) from last night & added poppy seed dressing & a bit more vinegar.

I’m also inspired by people I follow on IG, I highly recommend you do some searching. I follow a lot of vegan/vegetarian people but that’s because I think colourful fruits & veggies are more photogenic.

20130919-221726.jpg One of my favourite accounts, I love the way she arranges things on her plate. So neat & organized. The fanning technique is to die for!

I tell people that I make my plate like I would a painting, trying to create a visual balance as well as moments that spark interest ( by using contrast with either texture or colour).

Food Diary – September 4th

Decided that I would keep track of what I ate today as a way of refocusing my energy into healthy eating.
It started with breakfast…

20130904-162423.jpg (eating fruit is supposed to be healthiest on an empty stomach so I’ve been trying to make it the first thing I eat for the day).
Then my favourite thing… Coffee!!

20130904-162650.jpg a Gibraltar which has way less milk than cappuccinos & lattes with just a touch of vanilla for sweetness.
Then a bite of lunch…

20130904-163027.jpg avocado, orange pepper with caramelized onion hummus, & mixed greens with honey goat cheese & homemade vinaigrette.
Afternoon snack was half a pint of juice…

20130904-163715.jpg (juiced carrot, pineapple, apple, pear, orange, ginger & garlic in my Breville, & added powdered turmeric, cinnamon, cayenne & roasted ginger to it)
With some popcorn…

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Dinner was a fantastic night out with friends, a last night celebration before they go back home. I had a yummy salad to start…

20130905-010023.jpg (heirloom tomato, avocado, mixed greens, croutons, goat cheese cream & balsamic reduction).
A bite from a fantastic sushi presentation (with my good friend Carl in the background)…

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Main course was Bermuda Mahi Mahi with mango salsa, garlic mashed potatoes, snow peas & carrots…

20130905-010345.jpg Yum!
Dessert was a passion fruit mousse with 3 spoons that I was too distracted by the conversation to take a pic off. Making sure to be present in the moment & not completely IG obsessed lol.