cartoon by marc johns.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Grilled Ginger Soy Lime Flank Steak with Arugula

Moist & flavorful.
Topped with peppery arugula.
This is a quick, easy, and flavorful dish that is great to make for company because it looks impressive.  All you have to do is marinate the flank steak and then grill it about 5 minutes per side - then it is time to eat!  I have marinated this steak for 1 hour only, and that works fine, but my favorite is to marinate 24 hours. The steak gets very juicy, gingery, and with a lovely acidic kick from the lime. Incidentally, you can use this same marinade on chicken and it tastes great as well.  This recipe serves 3-4 people.  Enjoy!

1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup soy sauce (I use low sodium)
1/2 cup lime juice
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
4 smashed and peeled garlic cloves
4 slices fresh ginger root
5 sliced green onions (white and green parts)
1 1/2 pounds flank steak
about 3 ounces arugula
salt and pepper, to taste

To the cooking:

1. Make the marinade: whisk olive oil, soy sauce, lime juice, and light brown sugar until emulsified. Add in the garlic cloves, ginger, and sliced green onions. Pour over steak. 


Poured over steak.
2. Marinate for 1 hour or up to 2 hours, flipping the steak halfway through your time.

3. Bring the steak to room temperature before grilling; that means about 30 minutes to one hour outside of the fridge. 

4. Take the steak our of the marinade but do not discard the marinade - it will become our salad dressing for the arugula. Pat the steak dry and put on grill over medium heat. 
Beginning to grill.
5. In order to get nice grill marks, you just want to flip the steak once. After about five minutes, flip the steak. Depending not eh thickness of your steak, 5 minutes per side should get you somewhere close to medium rare. (To make sure, 130F at the thickest part of your steak is medium rare). 

Look at those grill marks.
6. Once cooked to your liking, put steak off heat and let rest for at least 10 minutes, and up to 15 or so minutes. Then season it with some salt and pepper.

7. While steak is resting, pour marinade into a sauce pan and bring to a boil. Once boiling, remove from heat and set aside.

Boiling marinade.
8. Slice steak against the grain. 

9. Move steak to a serving platter and spoon a little of the marinade onto the steak. You do not want to spoon the ginger slices or garlic cloves; just the liquid and some green onions.

10. Top the steak with arugula and some more marinade as the dressing. Toss to coat. Enjoy the pepper taste of the arugula with each bite of the succulent steak.

Steak peeking out.
Ready to serve.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Dijon Potato Salad

Fresh parsley flavor. 
Smooth but not TOO smooth.
I am not a big fan of mayonnaise, so when I make potato salad, I do it with mustard and vinegar as my base. I love mustard! Plus, it gives a delicious bright acidic feeling to the salad. If missing out on the mayo makes you sad, you can use this same recipe but instead of 1 tablespoon of dijon, use 1/2 tablespoon of dijon and 1/2 of mayo. To me, all potato salads must have pickles, and they should be dill rather than bread and butter. It gives a nice crunch, and an extra injection of salt and flavor. I like a nice fresh herby taste in my potato salad as well; this time, I went with parsley, but I have used basil and thyme before. And the piece de resistance, for me, is the hard boiled egg. It gives a nice textural change to the creamy mashed potatoes, and the yolks add some of the fat into the salad that is missing from not using mayo. I have had great success with people enjoying this potato salad and asking for my recipe. I recommend giving it a go at your next summer BBQ or potluck! It's easy and delicious. This recipe makes enough for about 4 people.


1 1/2 pounds red new potatoes, halved or quartered (depending on their size)
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
salt & pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley (or herb of your choice)
5 chopped dill pickle spears
3 hard boiled eggs, chopped

To the cooking:

1. Boil the potatoes in salted water, about 15-20 minutes. 

3. While the potatoes are boiling, make the dressing: whisk together vinegar, dijon, olive oil, and salt & pepper (to taste).

Dressing pre-whisk.

Post-whisk; nice & emulsified.
4. Chop the parsley, eggs, & pickles.

5. Once potatoes are cooked, put the toppings except the parsley on. Then mix in the dressing. You want to do this while the potatoes are hot so the dressing gets absorbed into them.

Ready to mix.
6. Put the potato salad in the fridge to cool. Once cool, add the parsley and stir to combine. You are waiting to add the parsley so the heat of the potatoes doesn't cause it to wilt; you want it to be fresh and green looking. Taste and season as needed with salt and pepper. Enjoy!

Cooling on down.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Broiled Honey Grapefruit & Thyme Spritzer


Tart and Fizzy.

This is an easy-to-make alcoholic beverage that is perfect to serve at brunch or a summer bbq. The grapefruit is tart, but broiling it with some honey tones it down a bit, and the fruity notes of the prosecco really lighten the party. The thyme adds a nice savory note. If you don't have prosecco, I recommend serving this broiled honey-thyme-grapefruit juice with a splash of gin and some bubbly water - also a great combination. If you are not into alcohol and want to drink this virgin, I would recommend adding some lime juice and bubbly water; I really like this drink to have bubbles in it, I think it makes it taste more refreshing. Anyway, however you slice it, I recommend giving this drink a try. This recipe makes 2-6 drinks, depending on your chosen ratio of prosecco to juice. If you only make two drinks out of this, like I did this time, these drinks are fairly light on the alcohol. If you want your drinks to be more like a mimosa, then they will be heavier on the prosecco and a lighter color than the drinks here. Whatever you prefer! I've made them both ways and they are equally delicious. Enjoy!

Edit: This post has been featured on Food52! Thanks guys!


3 ruby red grapefruits
3-4 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon thyme leaves, plus sprigs for garnish
Prosecco, or gin & bubbly water

1. Preheat oven to broil. Cut all three of the grapefruits in half. Put 5 of the 6 halves on a parchment paper lines baking tray, skin side down. Coat the fruit with a generous squeeze of honey. 

Honeyed grapefruits.
2. Broil the grapefruits until caramelized...about 10-15 minutes, depending how close your oven rack is to the top of your oven (closer to the heat source = less cook time). Once caramelized, pull tray out and allow fruit to cool.


Getting some good color.
3. Cut some segments out of the non-broiled half of grapefruit and put in cocktail shaker, along with some ice.  Add in the thyme leaves.  Squeeze the juices of the broiled grapefruits into the shaker as well.

Ready to shake.

4. Shake the cocktail shaker. (Note: if you are not using prosecco, but are instead using gin, add the gin to the cocktail shaker as well). Strain the liquid into some ice-filled glasses.  Top off with prosecco or bubbly water. Enjoy!

Refreshingly simple.

Drink time.
Bubbly & tart.
Pretty pink color.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Oatmeal Blueberry Coconut Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

These cookies are some of my favorite ones to make. They are not very sweet and the coconut gives them a wonderful chewy texture. I could eat so many in one sitting. Dangerous! I also like the idea of dried blueberries in an oatmeal cookie instead of raisins. It not only makes them a little more unique, but the flavor of a dried blueberry is (I think) better than that of a raisin.  These cookies are also awesome without any chocolate in them. It's up to you. What I will tell you is that there is nothing better than a few of these chewy, moist cookies and a tall glass of milk. This recipe makes about 2 dozen cookies.  Enjoy!


1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 cup room temperature unsalted butter
2/3 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
2/3 cup shredded sweetened coconut
2/3 cup dark chocolate chunks 
2/3 cup dried blueberries

1. Preheat oven to 350 F. 
2. Cream coconut oil, butter, & sugar. Add in the vanilla & eggs. 
All in.
3. In a separate bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, & salt.
Dry ingredients, whisked.
4. Add the dry ingredients to the coconut oil, butter, & sugars mixture cup by cup until just incorporated.
Adding the flour mixture in.
5. Add oats, coconut, chocolate, & blueberries to the dough. Mix until evenly dispersed.

Blueberries, coconut, & chocolate. 
Mixed up dough.
6. Put dough in balls about 1/4 cup large and then flatten slightly as you put them on the baking tray. (Use a silpat mat or greased parchment paper on the baking trays).  The cookies will spread as they bake so leave some room.

Ready for the oven.
7. Bake about 13 minutes. Allow to cool slightly before eating. Enjoy!

So tempting. 
One cookie.