Food lover’s guide to Taipei & Jiufen

date07.15.14

Taipei Tea Garden

Contrary to popular American belief, if you have a family of four with a fluffy dog, you don’t need a minivan. A scooter will do. Just one of the many fact jewels from our trip to Taipei.

Also, carry an umbrella at all times. And your friend’s light-weight waterproof jacket you can shove in your purse (because you don’t own one yourself). And maybe a poncho. In a pinch, you can snag one from the shopkeeper next to the bus stop who keeps a box for surprise storms. Business is great on rainy days.

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Ginger peach mojito mocktail

date07.10.14

Ginger Peach Mojito Mocktail

Do you have a friend who just won’t shut up about how great life is and how everything’s so perfect – blahblahblah- and you just want to punch her in the face every time she opens her mouth? You do now. As soon as July hits and the Monterey Market’s bins fill up with summer produce, I’ve got a running list of 101 reasons why I love California ready to spew at you at any moment. #1 on the list: stone fruit! #2: this ginger peach mojito mocktail.

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Chicken pesto zucchini noodles: Introducing OmieBox with a weekly healthy lunch menu

date07.07.14

OmieBox Zucchini Noodles

My mom packed me a turkey sandwich for lunch every day of elementary school. And every day I threw my sandwich in the trash. I’m not sure why I never told her to just stop packing the sandwich. I could have saved her a fortune on bread and lunch meat. Maybe then she would have gotten me that pony. Or let me go ahead with my bedroom add-on I’d carefully sketched out.

Turns out I’m not alone: lunch food is the #1 waste produced by schools each year. If only an insulated lunchbox like OmieBox existed when I was a kid, she could have sent the healthy food I’d actually eat. And it’d still be warm at lunchtime! Dishes like these chicken pesto zucchini noodles, healthy turkey and veggie chili, or even cauliflower macaroni and cheese. (See my OmieBox weekly healthy lunch menu below).

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The best ever baked cauliflower macaroni and cheese

date07.05.14

Cauliflower Mac & Cheese

You all keeping cool for the 4th of July weekend? We ditched city life and the convenient cell phone service & wifi that comes with it to escape with my parents to their woodsy lake cabin for a long relaxing weekend. As nice as it feels to disconnect from the outside world for a few days, we weren’t prepared, and after 36 hours, we find ourselves enjoying an iced tea and the free wifi at the Peninsula Market.

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Chocolate candied bacon ice cream

date06.28.14

Candied Bacon Ice Cream

On this Saturday a year ago, we were melting in the 110°F sun while exchanging forever and ever vows in front of all our friends and family. Best and hottest day ever. A friend recently asked, “is Chico always that hot? When I think of Chico I think of scorching heat that I never want to go back to ever again.” I assured him that was a fluke. An unexpected heat wave that should never have happened that day in June. THAT day in June is usually in the low 90s, I promised.

If it happens two years in a row, can we call it a fluke? Chico’s planning to get up to a cool 101°F tomorrow. You know, to commemorate our anniversary. Recreate the experience. What do you do when the world is melting outside? Bust out the ice cream, that’s what. A double scoop of this chocolate candied bacon ice cream will cure any and all heat ailments. Maybe I’ll make homemade ice cream an anniversary tradition.

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Gluten-free apricot galette with lavender caramel sauce

date06.23.14

Gluten-free Apricot Galette Slice

Welcome to the new and improved Snixy Kitchen! If you’ve been here before, you’ll notice things look quite a bit different. About a week ago, I spilled the beans about the redesign and today I’m finally rolling it out for y’all! And we’re celebrating with a slice or two or three of this decadent gluten-free apricot galette with lavender caramel sauce drizzled on top. I can’t stop, I won’t stop with the caramel or the lavender.

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Texas BBQ pulled pork quesadillas with vinegar slaw

date06.19.14

BBQ Pulled Pork Quesadilla Stack

The neighbors got suspicious when they peered through the fence and noticed Lucas and Mikey digging a 4-foot deep 3×5-foot pit in our backyard. By offering an invitation, I assured them that we were planning to roast a pig, not bury a body. For my last 20-something birthday, we invited all our friends over for a potluck pig roast; we’d provide the pig, dessert, and appetizers - they bring some sides and drinks. Just like Field of Dreams promises, “if you build it, they will come.” You promise a 50lb pig roast in your urban backyard and 40 of your closest friends will show up. Spoiler alert: this is the story of how not to roast a pig, and how to turn a crummy situation into these addicting Texas BBQ pulled pork quesadillas.

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Southwestern black bean spaghetti with skinny avocado crema

date06.16.14

Southwestern Black Bean Spaghetti Platter

Are you way too busy to cook and just need a quick and healthy meal for your weekly rotation? Us too. With Lucas’s Kickstarter launching in 3 weeks and my obsession with optimizing my upcoming blog makeover, our weekly meal planning has been a life saver. Without it, we’d both forget to think about dinner until our growling stomachs reminded us around 7:30 or 8pm when it’s much too late to figure something out, go to the market, and cook. Which means we either end up going out to dinner or shredding cheese between whatever gluten-free bread or tortillas we have in the fridge. When in doubt, melt cheese. With meal planning, though, we get to eat things like this Southwestern black bean spaghetti in barely no time.

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