For the Reluctant Veggie Eater: Mama Sophia’s Holy Guacamole Recipe

I have to confess that I am generally not fond of vegetables. I think of them as necessary evils and often plan a meal with them as an afterthought.

Over the years I’ve figured out ways to sneak in stuff that’s supposed to be good for me into my diet. One of them is guacamole. I really enjoy using it as a veggie dip for crunchy vegetables such as carrots, jicama, bell peppers, cucumbers, and more. And of course, there’s always the tortilla chips to eat with the guacamole.

The best guacamole I ever had was made tableside in a stone pig (molcajete). I’ve seen the molcajete at Crate and Barrel and Sur La Table and came very close to buying it for myself a number of times, but have decided not to. One—because I live in the Midwest and avocados tend to be expensive, so I don’t make it very often. Two—I’m a little uneasy about how I’m going to clean the molcajete well enough so it won’t be a petri dish for e. coli.

Nevertheless, I’m content and successful with using a basic ceramic bowl and the potato masher. As with anything, if you work with the freshest ingredients, you’re more than halfway there.

Mama Sophia’s Holy Guacamole Recipe Continue reading


May Discoveries

Can’t believe May is practically over. Although there’s still a week and a half left of school, I think everyone’s already checked out and ready for summer. There are no more math homework sheets or spelling tests to prepare for. Just the RAH-RAH (“Read At Home” daily reading of student’s choice), and even that seems optional.

Oddly enough, the Princess seems to want to play “school” when she’s at home—she prompts me to ask her math and spelling questions. I can’t help but laugh inside when I think, wait and see what Meanie Mommy has in store for you this summer…bwa-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha.

So what did Mama Sophia learn this month? Continue reading

My Weakness—Japanese Cream Bread

The other day, HB made a comment about my penchant for carbs. “How can you dream of losing weight when you eat so much carbs?” I told him, “Carbs aren’t the enemy. Inertia is. Portion sizes are.” But in my case, I have to admit that the carbs that I do like aren’t good for me.

Pastry House Hippo - Yummy!

Take for instance, Japanese cream bread. It’s a delightful square shaped loaf of white bread that I like getting from Pastry House Hippo, a little bakery inside Mitsuwa (a Japanese market). What I like about it is the soft, rich, creamy, chewy white part. There’s no cream filling per se—just cream/butter as one of the ingredients. I like to toast and slather some Smart Balance on each slice and sometimes add a bit of strawberry jam or sour cherry preserves. Yummy. Continue reading

Grandma Lee’s Fried Cookies with Cactus Honey Powder Recipe

Last weekend, I watched a master at work in the kitchen—my mother. She entertained my daughter by mixing up dough to roll out, pound with a mallet, and cut out shapes with cookie cutters, which my mom then fried and sprinkled with cactus honey powder.

It’s amazing how tasty and addictive a simple concoction of flour, water, oil, and cactus honey powder can be. (Grandma Lee loves cactus honey powder because it’s less sweet than regular sugar.) Continue reading

Mama Sophia’s Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe (Dairy Free)

One of the best (and worst) things I was introduced to in college was Nutella. When the dining hall didn’t serve anything that tempted me, I would just carry out some of their freshly made bread and take it back to my room to have with the chocolate and hazelnut spread. And sometimes I would just eat it straight from the jar. It didn’t matter that it had palm oil and tons of sugar and fat. It was food for my soul and a balm for broken hearts and bad biochem tests. I would even go as far as saying that Nutella helped me get through college.

Some people can’t get enough of Nutella. Others can’t get enough of Marshmallow Fluff. For the Princess, it’s my Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese frosting. If given the opportunity, I’m sure she’d eat it straight out of the bowl. Continue reading