All posts tagged: food photography

Stuffed Baked Zucchini (Gluten-Free)

Words, Photography & Video by Sarah Prikryl  We recently had the opportunity to tend an organic farm in Santa Cruz, CA which was, let’s be honest…my foodie dream come true. Every day we would stroll down to the garden and pick fresh zucchini, squash and tomatoes fresh off the vine. My favorite kitchen experiment  during my dream stay in the mountains was my Stuffed Baked Zucchini recipe. I’m so happy I get to share this delicious gluten-free meal with you! Especially now with these wintry, cold and rainy California days, who couldn’t use a warm plate of healthy comfort food? Enjoy! STUFFED BAKED ZUCCHINI Serves 10-12 Prep & Cook  Time: 40 minutes Bake Time: 35-40 minutes Total: 1 hr. 10-20 minutes INGREDIENTS 1 lb. Organic Ground Meat (bison or beef; vegans can use 1 carton of diced mushrooms or pea protein meat substitute instead) 6 large Organic Zucchini 2 Organic Lemons 4 sprigs of Rosemary 4 medium Organic Tomatoes 3 cups cooked Rice (which is 1 cup of uncooked Rice) 1 Yellow Onion 5 cloves of Garlic Olive Oil Salt & …

Sirens Food Hacks

Words, Video & Photography by Sarah Prikryl   Happy New Year!! In 2017, we want to inspire you to go have adventures, make some art, be present, instigate friend gatherings and always play with your food! To kick off the year, I’m sharing my most used Food Hacks to encourage you to cook up some fun. I hope this helpful video series saves you time in the kitchen and brightens your day! One of my favorite painters is Giuseppe Arcimboldo. His playful still life portraits predominately feature the close relationship between humans and nature. As a true believer in the magic found in the ordinary, Arcimboldo’s paintings inspire me to dream big in the kitchen. So without further ado, here’s my Arcimboldo-inspired love story and my Top 5 Food Hacks for some foodie fun!  (Click the arrow for some inspiration.) SARAH’S TOP 5 FOOD HACKS  Sirens Lettuce Hack The fastest and healthiest meal you can throw together is a savory and delicious salad. Did you know you can core a head of lettuce in about 3 seconds? Click the arrow to watch our Lettuce Hack Video: Sirens Onion Hack …

Mile-High Apple Pie (Gluten-Free)

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Time for gatherings and holiday festivities centered around family, friends and feasting! In late October/early November, we at Sirens & Scoundrels make our annual pilgrimage to Oak Glen, Ca. (Check out our Oak Glen adventures: HERE.) We wander through apple orchards for apple picking season, watch a mountain sunset and end the day at Apple Annie’s for a piece of Mile-High Apple Pie. Being gluten-free, I’m usually the one in the group observing all of the delight and minds being blown as friends consume a hot buttery piece of Mile-High Pie. I always ask, “How is it? How does it taste?” To which the reply is always, “Absolutely. Perfect.” The Apple Annie’s famous Mile-High Apple Pie is 5 pounds of pure apple. I’m told it’s not too sweet…a buttery, flaky piece of heaven, especially when served warm and á la mode. Partially out of pure eating envy and partially out of curiosity if I could replicate this masterpiece without actually having tasted it, I wanting to experiment with the idea of …

Mama Gina’s Greek Hummus (Vegan & Gluten-Free)

What you are about to read is very coveted, top-secret information. As a Greek girl, hummus has always been a staple at our family table, especially on holidays, when family gatherings traditionally start with mezethes. Fresh-cubed feta cheese, Greek olives, grape leaves and creamy dips with pita bread are dug into by hand over lively conversation before moving to the table for the main meal. The star of our mezethes spread is always my mother’s homemade hummus. This recipe has been passed down from generations of Greek women, originating on the island of Samos with my grandmother’s relatives, travelling with my Yiayia to America where it settled into New York’s immigrant city blocks and finally landing with my mother in sunny Southern California and onto our suburban table. Over many years in LA, our family hummus was the favorite attraction at every gathering even before it became the de rigueur go-to Cali party snack. Many of our friends growing up were exposed to hummus for the first time at our house. But no matter how popular it …

Baked Pumpkin Fondue

Starting with Halloween and ending on New Year’s Day, the Holidays are a whirlwind of feasts and gatherings. I recently attended a Halloween Potluck Pumpkin Carving hosted by the best hostess and foodie, the lovely Hayley McCarthy (who was previously featured over the summer in my camp cooking article with her delicious gluten-free Banana Fritters recipe: HERE). For this festive gathering of costumed guests ready to show off their pumpkin carving skills, Hayley baked the most perfect, comforting and gorgeous Holiday dish I had ever seen! As she stepped out of the kitchen dressed in true Halloween fashion as Rosie the Riveter, her Baked Pumpkin Fondue was greeted with oohs and aahs and tasted even better than it looked–if that is even possible. Hayley made this special dish gluten-free to make sure I could partake. As soon as I tasted it, I could not wait to share this recipe with you! It’s absolutely the perfect Holiday dish and a wonderful way to use those leftover pumpkins you have been using for your fall decor. I’m so happy to feature this recipe share from …

Italian Vegetable Stew ~ (Gluten-Free & Vegan)

As summer ends and we step into fall, I can think of nothing more satisfying than a piping-hot, hearty bowl of homemade stew!  The seasonal changes are sometimes subtle here in California but it allows for fresh produce year round.  I love that we can easily get seasonal, organic produce from our local farmer’s market throughout the week or even grow it in our own home garden. At a recent Sirens & Scoundrels trip to Northern California, my friends generously shared their backyard harvest with me and I couldn’t wait to start experimenting in the kitchen! These were some of the best tomatoes I have ever eaten and the beautiful bounty of squash, zucchini and basil ran rampant in their garden. My Italian Vegetable Stew began as an experiment inspired by our farm-to-table experience and became an instant hit! It’s so easy, healthy and delicious (plus it’s vegan and gluten free)!  This crave-worthy, comfort bowl is so rich in flavor because of the quality of the produce. I highly encourage you to use organic ingredients, especially the tomatoes, when making this stew. I’m so happy …

République ~ Los Angeles, CA

If you’ve been jonesing for a little taste of the French countryside recently but don’t quite have the time or money to head overseas right now, then why not allow the French countryside to come to you? République on La Brea is the stuff all your Provence dreams are made of: long wooden farm tables inside a château courtyard, fluffy pastries overflowing from pâtisserie cases, thick creamy butter slathered over fresh-baked bread loaves still warm from the oven and just perfect for dunking those bright orange farm-fresh egg yolks into. From your very first step inside the door, you find yourself filled up with a burning desire to parlez et mangez français. Set inside the old La Brea Bakery and Campanile building, République has been restored back to most of the original architecture from when Charlie Chaplin first built it in the 20’s. The interior courtyard has been exposed with large skylights overhead so that it seems to glow from within. The vibe is relaxed, airy and casual. We went for brunch and it was the …

Tuscan White Bean Dip (Vegan & Gluten-Free)

In California, it seems you can’t hit a single party without ten different people bringing hummus. Don’t get me wrong—I LOVE hummus. As a Greek girl, it comes with the territory. But if you’re looking for a new way to spice up your Mediterranean bean dip offerings for your next gathering, look no further than this unbelievably fast and tasty Tuscan White Bean Dip. Creamy, delicious and flavor-packed with just the right amount of chunk, this vegan and gluten-free side dish can be served warm or room temp. It’s a savory, hearty, mouth-and-soul-satisfying twist on a white bean dip to leave your guests begging for more. The best part? It literally takes ten minutes from start to finish, possibly less if you’re a Speedy McGee—the fastest gourmet meal you’ll ever make! It all happens in one pan with basically no clean-up. Try this recipe out and keep it in your back pocket as your secret weapon and be prepared to impress with zero fuss. Serve with vegetable crudités and crackers as an appetizer or with …

Camp Cooking ~ Lentil Stew (Gluten-Free & Vegan)

With summer in full swing, it’s time to go camping! Last week, I let you in on a delicious, quick and easy campout breakfast idea: Hayley’s Crave-Worthy Banana Fritters. As promised, I am continuing to divulge all of my Campout Secrets. There’s nothing like a warm home-cooked meal, especially after a day in the sun. After mountain hiking, dog chasing and river plunging all day, the act of gathering around a glorious campfire in your dusty clothes with an iced beverage in hand is so satisfying.  While the sun sets over the mountains and through the trees, the harmony of the crickets and crackling fire are hypnotizing as you smell supper ready to be devoured. What could satiate better than a piping hot bowl of delicious hearty stew? My favorite camp eats to cook are always quick and easy, no-fuss, healthy hot-pots. The last thing you want to think about when you’re hungry and ready for some serious campfire lounging is making a complicated dinner for the crew. My recipe for delicious Lentil Stew is probably the easiest camp food you will ever eat. It is so hearty, …

Banana Fritters ~ (Gluten-Free & Sugar-Free)

I can’t think of anything better than being surrounded by nature and eating around a campfire. Some people pack granola bars in their backpacks when they go camping and call it a day.  But when my crew makes their way out into the wilderness, the cars are loaded down with everything you could possibly need to make a feast under the stars. Half the fun of setting up a camp for a few days is impressing your fellow campers with a gourmet meal by firelight or waking up in your cozy sleeping bag to the aroma of fresh brewed coffee and the sound of bacon sizzling in unison with the river rapids in the distance. It is not a secret how much I love California. We have every magical adventure you can think of at our fingertips within a car ride’s distance. I have camped out under the astounding constellations overhead in the Sequioa National Forest on many occasions. So when I got an invite from my crew of besties to celebrate our gorgeous Hayley’s birthday in the mountains, …

Joshua Tree Escape ~ Godwin Ranch

Last week, we spotlighted our trip out to Pioneertown to see Charles Bradley & His Extraordinaires perform live at Pappy & Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace—two of our favorite things colliding in one magical place! There is something about Joshua Tree that just inevitably brings about these kinds of other-worldly experiences—and not in the Burning Man kind of way. We’re talking real-deal straight-to-your-core magic that comes from just being still with the people you love and hearing your own soul speak to you of all its dreams and longings. One thing is guaranteed: when you make that drive out to the desert…you always get your Question answered. Even if you didn’t know you have one. After experiencing The Screaming Eagle of Soul in all his soul-shakedown love-revolution glory, we packed it in for a weekend friend retreat in Joshua Tree. Whenever we head out to the desert, we love to stay with Joshua Desert Retreats. Their thirteen quaint and charming desert properties range in occupancy from 2-14 guests and are surprisingly very affordable. We love that they …

Nectarine Crisp ~ (Gluten Free & Vegan Option)

When I first moved to LA thirteen years ago, one of my first jobs was manning a stall at four different farmer’s markets selling raw cheddar. It was a fairytale of a summer. On Sunday mornings, I was flanked between the fig/berry stand and the peach farmer directly across from a live bluegrass band. As we sat back and listened to some toe-tapping tunes, we snacked on fresh fruit and chatted about life. Now my favorite way to spend a Saturday morning is jumping out of bed, lacing up my Converse and heading down the block to my neighborhood farmer’s market. I head straight to the organic white tent to see what is in season at the moment. As the days turn longer, I know that peaches, nectarines & plums will be aplenty. Leading into summer, my favorite harvest is stone fruit season. Although eating a RAW, ripe, organic sweet nectarine is so decadent and delicious, when I bake, I love to cook fruit into my desserts. I find that fresh organic fruit is so naturally sweet …

Paru’s Indian Restaurant ~ East Hollywood, CA

A few years ago, we went to India for our friends’ wedding in Panna National Park. On our way there, we stopped off in Udaipur and spent a week eating our way across the gorgeous city. Known as “the Venice of the East”, Udaipur is a lake city in the northwestern state of Rajasthan—India’s historic palace region. The stark white Lake Palace literally floats on its own in the middle of Lake Pichola, while the sprawling ornate City Palace complex lines the lakeshore. Every day we toured the temples and palaces in total awe of their ancient beauty…and then we ate and ate some more. The food in India is quite different from the Indian food we had experienced in the U.S. The spices were more flavorful, the sauces smokier and richer…and yet it left us feeling light and energized instead of bogged down and sluggish. A big fan of veggies, I loved that every menu was always vegetarian as the norm. It’s amazing what thousands of years of perfecting vegetable-based recipes can do. In …

Roasted Potato Salad ~ (Vegan & Gluten-Free)

Happy Memorial Day Weekend! As we all gather together to celebrate this weekend with bar-b-ques, picnics and potlucks, I am brought back to memories of my childhood. Driving to Granger, TX. Fresh dill growing like wildflowers flanking the steps to my grandparents’ back porch screen door. The intoxicating smell of fresh dill and laundry came wafting through as I ran up the steps and into my grandparents’ kitchen to see my grandma mixing her creamy half-mashed potato salad for supper. She would set the beautiful ceramic dish on the table with sausages and sauerkraut. My boisterous entrance was always followed by big hugs and a blessing as we gathered around the table. My dad was in the military and in my childhood innocence, I associated Memorial Day with family, fun and food. But as an adult, I also think of Memorial Day as a wonderful day to take a moment to honor my Dad, along with all of the men and women and their families who have sacrificed for our country. So in honor of Memorial …

Gluten-Free Pasta Salad (with Vegan Option)

If you’re looking for the fastest, easiest, most delicious on-the-go dish to bring to your next summer picnic or potluck, you’re in luck! This is your new go-to recipe! I started making this Gluten-Free Pasta Salad a few years ago and it became an instant hit amongst our friends. Now whenever summer rolls around and a gathering is afoot, this salad is always requested. Light, tasty, healthy and extremely satisfying all at once, this salad can be tossed together in a few minutes and holds at room temperature. Bring it to your next Summer Outdoor Movie Night (for your LA List, click HERE) for a dish guaranteed to put a smile on your friends’ faces and have them coming back for seconds—and thirds! Prep Time: 5 mins Cook Time: 8-12 mins Total: 20 mins Serves: 8-12 people, depending on portions INGREDIENTS~ 1 bag of gluten-free pasta (I use Trader Joe’s Gluten-Free Pasta) 1 bag of organic arugula 1 can of organic garbanzo beans 1 box of organic cherry tomatoes 1 log of chevre or 1 box of …

Dutch Baby ~ (w/ Gluten-Free & Milk-Free Options)

As an LA native, I consider myself incredibly lucky to have my family here. In a city full of transplants, my friends consider themselves lucky to have inherited my family by proxy. Over the years, my mom has been adopted as the resident mom on duty, lovingly nicknamed “Mama Gina”. Her meals are the stuff of legend. People are always sniffing around, asking what Mama Gina’s got cooking in her kitchen. Never a day goes by where she can’t been seen buzzing away over her stovetop, pots and pans a-bubblin’, delicious scents wafting down the street through the windows so you can actually smell the intoxicating aromas from the kitchen as you pull up. A few months ago, my mom started experimenting with a new recipe that has since become a heavy-rotation favorite at Sunday Family Brunch…the Dutch Baby. If you can imagine a giant soft-yet-crispy popover pancake soufflé baked in an iron skillet, you’ve got yourself a Dutch Baby. Now, if you can imagine that drizzled with butter, a touch of sugar and fresh-squeezed …

Thai Curry Vegetable Soup ~ Gluten Free

With the Daylight Savings time change and spring just flying by, I perk my head up each evening and laugh in disbelief that it’s practically May already, y’all!  With all the flurry of fun activity that comes with the lengthening spring sun, it’s usually 8pm before I finally notice the sun has gone down and it’s time for dinner. So quick and easy recipes like last week’s Chia Pudding become a staple or I end up busting out the take-out menu for some instant, warm comfort food. But what’s to be done when you’re craving the entire Thai menu? Or you can’t decide between the Thai curry or grabbing some hot Pho on your way home? This conundrum plunged me deep into some kitchen playtime this week. I thought: what can I make that gives me all my favorite Thai take-out items in one dish, but has no msg and is gluten-free, low-carb and vegetarian for all my veggie friends? And voilá–Thai Curry Vegetable Soup was created! Just the simmering aromas wafting from my stovetop remind …

Chia Pudding

The first time I saw chia pudding was a few years ago in San Francisco. My friend had ordered it at a brunch and when it arrived, it was as if a work of art had been presented in the middle of our farm table. The black and white chia pudding with apricot compote and rough chopped almonds looked like a mosaic masterpiece. Once I found out how simple it was to make, it’s been a staple in my refrigerator as a quick breakfast, an easy snack or a decadent dessert ever since. Not only is chia pudding gluten-free and can be made vegan & sugar-free, it is packed full of anti-oxidants, fiber, protein and has more Omega-3s than eating salmon. Because this super food is just hitting the mainstream, so far it is a non-GMO, usually organic, whole grain that has calcium, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, potassium, and vitamin B1, B2 & B3! I love the versatility of chia. It soaks up the flavor of whatever you add to it. My recipe for chia …

Goulash~ Beef & Potato Stew

St. Patrick’s Day is usually celebrated by parades of shamrocks, wearing green and drinking beer. But for me, St. Patrick’s Day always reminds me of my Czech grandmother. Her birthday was March 17th, 1916. So on St. Patrick’s Day, we would go visit my grandparents, who were married for almost 60 years by the time my grandpa passed away. Being farmers and homemakers, both my grandparents were amazing cooks. The smell of kolaches baking and goulash simmering on the stovetop were nostalgic aromas wafting through the screen door of their little farmhouse. My most euphoric and vivid childhood memories are always associated with cooking or sitting around a dinner table with my grandparents. We would cook and bake all day, then eat supper gathered around their wood dining table with the Czech radio station playing a polka or waltz in the background. My grandpa would sweep my grandma up in his arms and waltz her around the kitchen with pots bubbling and aprons flying. After a full belly, we would take a walk through the fields down to the railroad tracks at sunset listening to a …

Le Garage ~ Sausalito, CA

What’s a Siren or Scoundrel to do when they’re itching for the South of France but also need to pay the rent? Head up to Sausalito and experience the Riviera’s kissing cousin in all its dreamy aquamarine glory. If you really want to set the scene, go straight to Le Garage for a French Bistro dining experience that will leave you asking, “Cannes who?” Sitting right along the waterfront with big white sailboats and shiny yachts glittering and bobbing lazily in the afternoon sun, you can relax with a glass of French rose and dust off those phrases you haven’t used since high school: “Ah oui, Monsieur, je vais tres bien, merci beaucoup. Umm…that’s all that I remember.” Le Garage is a true fine dining experience made refreshingly accessible and delicious. The French owners wanted to bring some of their local comfort foods to the traditional bistro menu. So alongside their exquisitely executed staples like Steak Frites and Salade Nicoise, you’ll also find Country Pork Chops and Crispy Panisse—french fries made from chickpeas. The highlight …

Zucchini Noodle Pad Thai

In 2011, I traveled to Thailand and my true love affair with Thai cuisine began. The explosion of flavors was unlike any Thai food I had experienced in the States. I couldn’t leave “The Land of Smiles” without uncovering the mysteries of those beautiful bright flavors–which prompted a bike ride to a little farm in the northern countryside to take a cooking class from a Thai chef. My friend Kristen & I experienced cooking Thai cuisine for the first time with local ingredients. Thai food is so satisfying because it awakens a symphony of flavor. Spicy, salty, sour and sweet, Thai cooks are masters of balancing the palate. No other dish showcases that magic like Pad Thai. Flash forward to 2016 and that adventure still finds its way into my kitchen. As a home cook and happa, I like to experiment with Asian cuisine but with a California twist. This is not surprising since I grew up with a Korean mother who would sneak rice and kimchi onto our dinner table to accompany any international cuisine from Italian pasta to Czech goulash. This Zucchini Noodle Pad Thai became an …

Say Cheese! ~Your Self-Help Guide to Cheese Pairings

This one is for all you cheese lovers out there. Spoiler Alert: This article may trigger impulsive behavior. It may induce intense cheese board fantasies–forcing you to go buy large chunks of cheese, then gather all your friends to eat said cheese while enjoying the best day of your adult lives. Because what’s up with being an adult if you can’t eat as much cheese as you want, whenever you want to? Maybe that’s why I like to create moments that make me feel as if I’m living a life of leisure: lounging in a farmhouse…on a vineyard…in the south of France (where they supposedly have 452 official kinds of different cheese). My favorite thing in the world is sitting down with friends at sunset over a cheese board and a glass of Rosé. Because really, cheese just makes everything better. I want to take your taste buds on an adventure. In solidarity over our mutual cheese obsession, we’ll learn the nitty-gritty about what makes a good cheese pairing. And what could be better than enticing your friends into the …

Vegan Gluten-Free Apple Oat Cookies

I have been asked for this recipe more than any other thing I’ve ever baked. So… I will share it with you now so you can hoard a batch for yourself as an act of self-love or wow a loved one with this bite-sized breakfast-in-bed to accompany a morning coffee. Words that describe my Oat Cookies: Quick, Easy, Healthy, Vegan, Gluten-free, Sugar-free, Delicious, Addictive, Crowd-Pleaser, Snack, Dessert, Breakfast…Need I say more? Makes 12 Cookies Vegan Gluten-Free Oat Cookies   PREP: 10 minutes COOK: 25 minutes Ingredients 3 ripe bananas 1 cup chopped skinned apples (*you can also substitute chopped dried or fresh fruit like berries, dates, raisins, apricots, etc.) 1/3 cup melted coconut oil ½ tsp salt 2 cups quick oats (*you can use quick oats or regular oats; the regular GF oats give the cookies a crisper texture) 1 tsp vanilla extract 1/2 cup unsalted roasted chopped almonds (Optional) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease your cookie sheet. Set aside. In a large bowl, mash the bananas. Add the oil, salt and vanilla. Mix in the oats. Set aside a few minutes for …

Flourless Chocolate Lava Cake (Gluten Free)

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner and I am being inspired by those romantic French.  My most memorable food memory is of this euphoric Poached Pear with Chocolate Sauce dessert that I devoured in Antibes, France that literally changed my life.  There’s something about chocolate that is so decadent and no one does it better than the French. From Chocolate Soufflés to Molten Lava Cakes, French cuisine & pastry is synonymous with romantic desserts that will ignite your desire.  Being gluten-free, I have always wanted to experiment with creating a dessert that has the creaminess of a Chocolate Lava Cake but without the use of flour. Thus the Flourless Chocolate Lava Cake was born. We at Sirens and Scoundrels are always initiating fun gathering ideas and food shares. What could be more fun while celebrating this Month of LOVE than gathering your loved ones or Valentine’s date & having a decadent Chocolate Party? It’s a taste experience that will have your loved ones over the moon. Because you’ll be baking individual Chocolate Lava Cakes, you and your guests have the freedom to flavor …

Spaghetti Squash “Pasta” (vegan & gluten free)

I like to celebrate February as the Month of Love: love for a partner, love for your family & friends, and most importantly, love for yourself. So for each week in February, I am going to share one of my recipes featuring a culture that shares my food philosophy: FOOD IS LOVE. Sharing Italian food is synonymous with romance–there’s something about Italian that makes you feel decadent and cared for. One delicious bite can make you feel like you’ve received a warm, passionate hug. Being present together over a shared meal “made with love” is what I want to entice you to do this month. My spaghetti squash “pasta” will impress anyone lucky enough to be your heart’s desire. This Italian feast-in-a-pot is the perfect centerpiece for your next gathering, be it a romantic date with a bottle of wine or a celebration with friends. Not only is it gluten-free and vegan, but it’s simple to make and extremely satisfying. Spaghetti Squash gets its name from its noodle-like texture when cooked. It is the perfect hearty base for a …

Vegan Comfort Food ~ Lentil & Sweet Potato Salad

So, this dish is pretty legendary amongst our friends. It seems inconspicuous enough at first glance—lentils in a bowl. Big whoop. Until you bite into it. Then universally everyone asks, “Wait, WHAT’S IN THIS?!” Quickly followed by, “Can you give me the recipe?” after going back for thirds. This is quite possibly one of the simplest meals you will ever make, but it is just undeniably delicious. It’s healthy vegan comfort food that settles deep down into your bones and feels like a big warm food hug. The secret is the richness of the roasted sweet potatoes combined with the unexpected creamy tanginess of the lentils cooked in olive oil and apple cider vinegar. I know people who have literally lived off this dish after being introduced to it. And it’s so easy ANYONE can make it. You ready? Here goes… Serves 6 INGREDIENTS~ 2-3 medium-large sweet potatoes 3 cups soaked or pre-cooked lentils (I use 1 bag of Trader Joes pre-cooked lentils) 1 bag of arugula (optional) olive oil unfiltered apple cider vinegar everyday …

Chicken Vegetable Soup

Flu season is upon us and nothing “cures what ails ya” like homemade chicken soup.  Recent scientific studies show that chicken soup really does have more medicinal value than a lot of over-the-counter medicines that just mask symptoms versus aiding your body in healing.  In my recipe, every single ingredient is medicine–each delivering anti-viral, anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, immune-boosting magic. Coming from a Tex-Mex and Korean food background and now being a gluten-free Cali-girl home cook, my version of chicken soup includes all the standard components of this traditional wonder broth…with some delicious twists. I’m revealing all my secrets here to keep you in the best health for 2016 and beyond. All of our sirens & scoundrels need to be in premium health for this year’s coming adventures, so we’ll get past this flu season together!  First, let’s talk about the magic of all of these luscious ingredients: –Coconut oil is extremely anti-viral. –Garlic is also anti-viral, detoxes your body from heavy metals, aids in heart & bone health, is rich in manganese, vitamin B6 and that powerful vitamin C. –Ginger …

Cabin Feasting

With winter finally hitting Los Angeles, it’s time to plan your next cabin excursion with friends. We’re so lucky that in California we have a million options for local getaways where the cabin game runs strong. So if you’ve got a cool case of Cabin Fever coming on (and really, who doesn’t?), then go check out Idyllwild, Big Bear, Lake Arrowhead, Yosemite, Mammoth, the Sequoias…or all of the above! This week, we shared our recent New Year’s adventure to idyllic Idyllwild with you. One of our favorite parts was getting to stay at a beautiful snowy treehouse cabin in the woods with friends. The great thing about being tucked away in a secluded cabin somewhere for a few days is that you get full permission to rest, relax and rejuvenate. Sacred time to just unplug, hunker down and, of course…chow down. And that’s really our favorite part. Grab your gang, have everyone bring some groceries to cook up their favorite mountain meal and enjoy a weekend of culinary adventuring. On our Idyllwild trip, we hit …

Detox Salad

After the Holidays (a.k.a. the universal feasting marathon), January is usually a time to reboot. What better way to start your year off than with clean eating and lots of organic fruits and vegetables? The “juicing” craze is alive and well in Los Angeles and many of our favorite juice shops are promoting a New Year’s Juice Fast/Detox to help you kick-start your resolutions. More than just a diet fad, juicing is a quick and delicious way to get those healthy vitamins delivered right where you need them. Inspired by detox juices but wanting a little more “bite”, I created a detox salad that has all the delicious sweet and savory flavors of an apple & beet juice, but with all the fiber and crunch of actually eating food…so you leave fully satisfied. When my body is screaming for a cold-pressed juice, my favorite flavors are both sweet and savory. I’ve integrated my favorite delicious immune- boosting ingredients into this salad: Apples are anti-inflammatory, high in fiber, filled with anti-oxidants and full of C & B vitamins. …

Gluten-Free Apple Crumble (with Vegan option)

If you want to be the guaranteed hit of your next winter gathering, look no further than this Apple Crumble recipe. I’ve been perfecting this recipe for some time now and it never fails to be the sure-fire crowd (and stomach) pleaser at any party. I offer it to you here so that you can spread this edible joy in a baking dish to the ones you love and feel that immense satisfaction as they come back for seconds and thirds, scraping the dish clean. Even though I eat flour, I adapted this into a gluten-free recipe for my many GF friends and to be honest, I prefer it this way now. Even when I don’t have gluten-free guests, I opt to make the GF topping because it’s lighter and melts away in your mouth perfectly. A simple switch of vegan sticks in place of butter can turn it into an instant and unexpected vegan dessert. It’s rare to find a dessert that has that same deeply soul-satisfying taste once it gets translated to gluten-free and vegan, but this …