Coconut Flavored Scones

Breakfast, Desserts | March 17, 2016 | By

Coconut Flavored Scones

When I was in Ireland, there wasn’t a day I didn’t indulge in a scone. A mix between crumbly pastry and dense cake, scones were the quintessential food item that just screamed “Irish” to me. So, what better thing to share on St. Patrick’s Day than my take on the traditional scone: Coconut Flavored Scones.

Though my research shows that scones are not native to Ireland (Scotland claims to be the home of the scone), someone obviously forgot to tell the Irish people that since scones are available on almost every breakfast menu, bakery counter and even convenient store. And, even if you ate one every day, you would hardly get tired of them — they come in almost every flavor combination available. My favorites were baked with cherries and other seasonal berries; they were so delicious I almost want to go back just so I can buy more cherry/berry scones.

Now that vacation is over, I’ve gone back to something that more closely resembles my normal diet — restricting my sugar intake, increasing my veggies and all-around trying to eat more healthy. This means, no more Irish scones — full of butter, whole milk and refined white flour.

That’s where this coconut flavored scone recipe comes into play. I replaced the white flour with whole wheat, sour cream for yogurt and swapped out the butter for coconut oil. To add an extra coconut taste, I performed my final swap: replacing whole milk with coconut milk.

Coconut oil is like the champion of superfoods. Not only is it great for your heart and can assist in things like weight loss, it also makes your kitchen smell amazing when you cook with it and your body feel great when you use it as a body lotion or hair mask for a little extra TLC. I always try to buy organic to make sure that none of this superfood’s superpowers are lost to things like pesticides or additives used to improve shelf life. After all, what’s the point of using a superfood if you are going to cancel all the goodness out with junk? (If you are interested in swapping some of your kitchen ingredients for coconut oil, check out this link here for a free 15 oz jar of organic Nutiva Coconut Oil from Thrive Market. Listen to me when I say Hailey and I wouldn’t just recommend anything unless we wholeheartedly believed in it. Thrive Market’s mission is very similar to our own — to make organic, healthy living easy. Now how could we not stand behind that?)

Anyways…back to the coconut flavored scones. Even after all the swaps, the scones came out even better than some of its Irish rivals. Better yet, I don’t have to feel as guilty indulging in one of these every once in a while.

I hope you enjoy this recipe! Cheers!


A Taste of Dublin: Gallagher’s Boxty House

A Taste Of | March 14, 2016 | By

Gallagher's Boxty House

As I mentioned last week, I recently went on my dream trip to Ireland. I’ve been planning this trip since I was a teenager and let me tell you, it was everything I thought it would be and more.  On one of the last full days in Dublin, my mom and I decided to visit the main “must-sees” — Kilmainham Gaol for a short history lesson on the 1916 Easter Rising, the National Museum of Ireland to peek at the bog people, Temple Bar to see this popular nightlife spot and this boxty house.

Boxty is a traditional Irish pancake made mostly of grated and mashed potatoes. It can be cooked in various ways (boiled, on a griddle, fried, etc.) and can be served plain or with a mixture of toppings and stuffings. Basically, boxty is one versatile, fluffy pancake. 

Since we only wanted a quick bite to eat so we could continue exploring Dublin, my mom and I decided to order light and share. The portions are more than enough to keep one person full, so sharing two dishes and a bottle of Guinness was super satisfying. And, with dishes between 15-20 euros, I’d consider this a reasonably priced find for Dublin. Note that if you are looking for a breakfast boxty, plan on eating late. Like most other restaurants (and sights) in Ireland, things open late and close even later.


Teriyaki Salmon with Cauliflower Rice

Main Dishes | March 9, 2016 | By

Teriyaki Salmon with Cauliflower Rice

Hi everyone! After a very busy, travel-filled February, I’m back to blogging. Last month, not only did I get to spend a week in NYC for work (and catch up with Hailey), I spent 10 days in Ireland on a little mother-daugher trip. Though I instagrammed a ton of pics from our trip, I’ll be posting a little recap from each city in the coming weeks, so be sure to check back in.

When you’re basically living out of a suitcase for a month, it is a little hard to make sure your fridge and pantry are properly stocked. That’s where I had to get a little creative in my cooking, and where I first got the inspiration for this recipe: Teriyaki Salmon with Cauliflower Rice.

Salmon is a great freezer friendly fish option — I usually have one or two filets stashed in my freezer at any given time — and cauliflower rice is a great healthy alternative to white rice. If you can’t find it in the grocery store, it’s really easy to make with just a few pulses in the food processor. Then, just add a couple veggies and a sauce and you’ve got a 10-minute, no-fuss dinner. 


Balsamic-Glazed Brussels Sprouts with Pomegranate

Main Dishes | February 1, 2016 | By

Balsamic-Glazed Brussels Sprouts with Pomegranate

A couple weeks ago, I read an piece by Tastemade that listed all the foods we should leave behind in 2015. On the top of that list was brussels sprouts. Though it may be true that brussels sprouts are a little overplayed (they appear on almost every gastropub menu in LA), I refuse to believe that the brussels sprouts trend is dead. 

My love affair with brussels sprouts has been years in the making. In fact, I even wrote about it in one of the first posts in this blog’s infancy. And though it’s been a while since I ate brussels sprouts for breakfast, lunch and dinner, I still enjoy a bowl every week or so.

I think why I haven’t gotten tired of them is because they are so versatile. Really. Their mild flavor acts as a vessel for a ton of flavor combinations. And, unlike other meals, brussels sprout dishes take only a few minutes to whip up and keep well in the fridge, meaning leftovers for days. With so many positives, why would you dare retire such a champion food item?


Chocolate Espresso “Stress” Cake

Desserts | January 29, 2016 | By

Chocolate Expresso "Stress" Cake

How do you deal with stress? Some run; some do yoga; some read; I bake. Whenever I am really stressed, I find baking to be therapeutic. I don’t know exactly why, but something about creating the perfect cake, cookie, bread, brownie or pastry helps me get out of my brain. Maybe it’s because I know that with just a few hours in the kitchen, I can whip up almost anything. Or maybe it’s because I like taste testing the fruits of my labor. Who knows. :-)
For the past couple weeks, my work schedule kicked my butt. So, I spent last weekend baking up a storm. It was a spur of the moment decision to make this chocolate “stress” cake, so when I found that I didn’t have all the ingredients I would usually need to make a cake, I had to improvise. 

After I already started making the cake, I found I didn’t have two crucial ingredients — milk and butter. I rarely buy milk these days (I’m trying to cut back on my dairy intake), but not having sticks and sticks of butter in the fridge and freezer was very unlike me.