Friday, November 6, 2015

Pasta Please. Zucchini Will Do.

Like any pregnant woman, most women in general, and even some a couple of you men out there, I've experienced my fair share of cravings. I have yet to experience one of those odd combinations that you hear about-- ice cream + pickles, pop tarts + mayonnaise (yes, apparently that's a thing), etc. However, I have been craving two things (not necessarily at the same time), butter and carbs. "What kind of carbs", you ask? Any really, but mainly potatoes.

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not stashed away in a corner gnawing on a loaf of French baguette with a stick of butter in my spare time. I too, have to practice self-control. Because after all, that pish-posh of eating for two is exactly that. Bummer, right? Apparently, women who are pregnant and at a healthy weight only need to add 300 calories to their diet (give or take).  So, for all you women who were looking forward to that day where you don't need to worry about what you stuff into your face when you get pregnant (myself included) I have four words for you: We've been lied to. You actually have to eat the best that you ever have/possibly will. But all is well on the home-front. I no longer fret. It really isn't as difficult as I'm making it sound. If you like produce as much as I do, it's actually quite easy.  You just have to be creative with what you THINK you want, and what your body ACTUALLY wants. Disclaimer: everyone has their slip-ups. "Everything in moderation," I say! See below for proof.

Tonight, I'm planning on making Julia Child's Boeuf Bourguignon-- A dish I equate with gloomy weatherTRIPLE  double the amount) dish-- Zucchini Pasta with Seared Tomatoes.  The recipe took about 5 minutes and just about the same amount of time to eat. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact me.

and a warm house. I'm also planning on making mashed potatoes to go alongside the delicious and time-consuming stew. That being said, I decided to eat healthy for lunch. I made a DELICIOUS (so much that I wish I made

Zucchini Pasta with Seared Tomatoes (Serves 1. Double or triple the recipe if need be)

  • 2 zucchinis, washed well
  • 1 ripe tomato on the vine, sliced in thirds
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tbs butter
  • 1/2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbs freshly grated parmesan cheese
  • Pinch of salt, add more if need be
  • Pepper to taste

Peel the zucchini with a vegetable peeler until the tiniest bit is left. Go ahead and slice the remaining bits to waste not. In a large nonstick pan, heat butter and olive oil at medium-low heat until melted. Be careful not to overheat or else the butter will burn.  Add garlic, then add zucchini. Toss lightly for about 1-2 minutes. Add salt and pepper, toss a couple times more, and add to the serving plate. Immediately add the tomato slices to the pan. Keep the tomatoes sliding on the pan and cook for about a minute on each side until they're golden brown on each side. Place on the zucchini pasta, add parmesan cheese, and enjoy!

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

New Chapter, New Kitchen

Is there anything more contagious than watching someone thrive and succeed? Think about it-- anytime you watch an inspirational movie, chances are that you leave the theater or the couch that you called home for the last two hours with a sudden "euphoric" feeling inside. You feel an energy that makes you evaluate your own scenario only to realize that you're more capable than you sometimes give yourself credit. This doesn't just have to be in terms of thinking big; making life goals or long-term commitments. It can be as little as successfully following a recipe, sticking to a healthy habit such as taking the stairs at work, etc.

I purchased a new cookbook about a month ago. This cookbook exceeds all the others I own in terms of content, accountability, and downright deliciousness. It's Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking. I lucked out and found a 50th Anniversary addition which included a beautiful cover that matched the hues in my kitchen, and a short story written by Julia herself as a "thank you" for purchasing the book-- as if the recipes weren't enough.

This cookbook has a deeper meaning (to me) than simply learning how to make Coq Au Vin. It symbolizes taking risks, and being part of something greater you ever imagined.  To steal a line from possibly my favorite movie Julie & Julia (shocker)-- "Julia Child was not always Julia Child".

Does that phrase resonate with you the way it does me? Think about it-- people don't always wake up one day, think of something they want to be, and then magically become it. Life happens along the way. Ups, downs, and everything between make us who we are and who we strive to be.

It is public knowledge (if it wasn't before, it definitely is now) that I will soon be a mother [insert massive smile and quick clapping hands here]. I am fourteen weeks pregnant and feeling better than  ever I have in the last few months, which by the way weren't as bad as they could have been! The idea that my life will change so vastly in six months is a concept that becomes more of a reality with each time I hear our baby's heartbeat--every 4 weeks.

Besides always knowing that I wanted to have a profession in the culinary field, I knew whole-heartily that I wanted to be a mother.  Now that that is happening, I'm beyond excited and eager to see how the roles as a wife, mother, entrepreneur, and foodie mesh.

With that reality, expect new recipes (including homemade baby food), and experiences that will be shared on Christina's Kitchen. It will be an outlet for beautiful, difficult, random, and delicious moments; I do hope that you will join me in my kitchen and on the journey.