Welcome Back! Travels and more travels....

Well hello stranger.  Where the HELL have you been D?  I've been all over the place and everything is falling into place.  Creating and traveling along the way.  I've cooked in 8 different homes since April and its been an interesting and fun experience.  Working with extremely limited ingredients and also kitchens that are less equipped than I am use to was a challenge.  Its those challenges that make us better at things.  I've also gotten my art studio into a perfectly compact and convenient little nomadic setup.  The prius is my carriage and the road is my yellow brick road.

Once July hit, my dear friend Annah, founder and designer of Boho Gypsy, and I set out on our epic month long journey.  We are two souls that allows life to play out as it comes, which makes it so easy to get along with.  No expectations, just living la vida. 

Our journey starts out in Angel Fire, NM. We received an invitation to join some friends in their magical cabin.  So many beautiful and colorful flowers that blanketed the region. Originally we were going to Boulder, but then Angel Fire got thrown into the mix and we said, "why not". 

We've arrived in Utah!!  Besides having to be in Park City for my art show,  Arches National Park awaits our arrival.  The entire drive has been breath taking.  So much beauty, at moments I just want to break down in tears, or just breathe it all in.  The world has so much to offer at all times.  Take the time to appreciate it and love it. 

Next stop, Park City, Utah.   Art creator, food lover, and food blogger.  Jude is such a thoughtful person at J GO Gallery that she placed me into this month perfectly.  Its Park City Food and Wine Classic and also my reception at the gallery on Friday. So this is when What the Hell Are They Making Now comes into play. The reception is the after party for Stroll of Park City wine crawl. Jude provided me with a wonderful condo, which has a nicely sized kitchen.   With a food stipend in hand, an unstocked kitchen, game on! 

Onward to Salt Lake City!  I have a love for hunting grocery stores.  I think its the love for discovering new ingredients. Ocean City Market was our first stop.  An Asian market that didn't have cucumbers or green onion.  That was a turn off!  Liberty Heights Grocery was kind of a bourgeois hippy place with really nice service.  Tony Caputo's Deli and Market was an Italian grocery store that was intriguing.  They had an amazing cheese selection and a wonderful chocolate counter.  I got a sandwich there.  Its hard to get a good Italian sandwich anywhere but New York.  Then we went 2 different generic grocery stores.  Oh god, I just realized I went to one this morning for Debo. Holy shit, I went to 8 grocery stores today.  Good god. No wonder I almost lost it when I had to stop in for some plastic wrap.  I do love going to grocery stores, but more than 4 a day is a little suicidal. 

First time to fill a fridge in many many months. Pretty exciting.  Its the little things in life.

We were suppose to go out to dinner, but instead ended up making dinner.  Using some of the ingredients for the reception spread, I whipped up pork wraps.  The pork was marinated in a fish sauce and pre made Korean marinade. Served with cabbage leaves, romaine leaves, shredded carrots, mint, basil, rice vermicelli noodles, and a Vietnamese nuoc cham sauce.  It worked.  I've been craving Vietnamese food, so hey!  Ended up being a perfect little dinner.  

Feel free to follow our journey on instagram at @lildfromokc or @gypsyannah

Morel Season and a Leftover Transformation

What??  I'm still catching you up on before I left for Savannah?  Yes.  Shamefully yes.  But this will help stir Spring Fever and get you craving vegetables.  The day I left I made tabbouleh and a vegetable lasagna for lunch. Weird right? Luckily I did because I haven't cooked much here in Savannah, and what I have cooked has been pasta and lots of eggs.  

The lasagna had spinach, spaghetti squash, and morels.  It was delicious and I could really use it right about now!  My wonderful friend, Emily Petree provided us with the morels.  Morels are delicious with cheese.  I bet it would be great in mac n cheese.

A warm and moss covered hello from Savannah!

I took some leftover Chinese BBQ pork that was super chewy and bad and turned it into a Vietnamese Thit kho by making a caramel sauce with sugar and soy sauce and then added the fish sauce dipping sauce thing it came with.  I added a little bourbon to the sauce to add a little depth since I didn't have any fish sauce to work with.  I stewed it with a couple hard boiled eggs and then turned the under cooked rice into a congee. It was actually really good!

Here's a lil something I've been working instead of cooking.  Paint paint paint!  Food I've been consuming to come!

Spring is here! Cauliflower Soup, Beef Tenderloin Lettuce Wraps and Mexican Quesadilla Breakfast

Surprise!  I know its been awhile, but I have been a busy bee.  I can literally say I haven't had ANY time to share all my delicious consumptions and stories.  Since I last posted anything I was in Oklahoma City.  Today I've been to Asheville where I met a wonderful pair of artist that I will be collaborating with.  Now I'm in Savannah as the first SixTwelve artist resident!  But before I left here are a few things that we made that needed to make the blog!

Cauliflower Soup and a salad with dijon dressing and flash fried shisito peppers.  I used a recipe from America's Test Kitchen for the cauliflower soup. Its a vegan soup and it really is delicious and creamy and doesn't need any cream or broth.  It has little florets browned in butter, but I used olive oil to keep with the vegan part.  I loved it!

Our first harvest of mint was spent on these delicious lettuce wraps.  Matt smothered the beef tenderloins with a Korean bbq marinade my dad gave us and he stuffed it with garlic. Served with a veggie plate of mint, cucumber, and lettuce.  Also, my Mom's homemade kimchee and pickled carrots.

I end it with an alternative to the breakfast quesadilla.  Instead of stuffing it scrambled eggs, put a poached egg on top!  I LOVE poached eggs.  I'm down to put on all sorts of things.  This quesadilla is stuffed with black beans and cheese and topped with a perfectly poached egg and slivers of fried shisito peppers.

I hope to fill you in on Savannah eats and weird foods I've made with leftovers soon!

Poached Egg with Seaweed Pasta, Mac n Cheese, and Spinach Chicken Enchiladas in Oklahoma

So far Spring has been wonderful in Oklahoma.  The wind hasn't been too insane, only one tornado scare and a few hailstorms make a visit.  We had a lovely flood the other night that made its way into my studio giving the paper and clay covered floors a nice much needed cleansing.  With the weather change comes a new change in morning rituals.  Its not painful to wake up anymore.  Its delightful and inspiring.  I feel like a bear coming out of hibernation.  I listen to music and drink coffee in the mornings and draw in the sun until I'm sweaty from the rays.  Thank you nature for being so beautiful.  Sorry nature for humans being such selfish jerks.  

My friend Samantha Lamb, whom recently moved her farm, The Farm and Fiddle to Tennessee provided me with her homegrown mushrooms, eggs, and farm raised chickens.  This dish is kept simple letting the eggs and mushrooms shine.  Its seaweed pasta tossed with olive oil, salt, and pepper, and then topped with lightly sautéed onions, mushrooms and red bell peppers.  Then a perfectly beautiful poached egg is placed on top and the gooey yolk makes for a great sauce that brings everything together.  

I wanted to make something comforting, so I made mac n cheese.  My roux was so smooth and awesome you almost didn't even need cheese. It was about 5 tablespoons butter to 3 tablespoon flour over a medium flame until its all blended together and nice golden color has formed.  Then slowly whisk in milk, a little at a time.  If you add it all at once, you will most likely have a lumpy roux.  Add salt and pepper, and then your cheeses.  I had cheddar and pecorino.   I LOVE mac n cheese.  Here's the recipe from Easter, but you can change out the cheeses.

Chicken, Spinach and roasted red pepper enchiladas.  These were made with Sam's farm raised chicken that I had actually roasted and then stewed the leftovers in our green tomato habanero enchilada sauce.   We used the tiny corn tortillas and made 2 enchiladas with flour as a taste test, both equally good.

Toppings.  Tomato, onion, cilantro, and pickled green tomatoes.

The filling.

Fry the tortilla, dip it in the enchilada sauce, stuff with goodies, line in dish, top with more sauce, onions, and cheese.  Bake at 425 for about 15 minutes.  Its served with black beans and rice.  Make it vegetarian, its just as good!