Disconnect to Reconnect

Baked Shrimp Risotto

My neck is less sore these days as I walk without looking at a smart phone. Up until last year, I had a couple android tablets for reading digital magazines, newspapers and books on the subway. Since that time, I’ve rediscovered how print books not only allows my mind to escape into another world, but they allow my eyes to rest from electronics. Instead of staying up late at night working on food blog posts, sleeping thru the night allows my mind to rest. In turn, my writing and my focus at work is better. A friend called to express her dismay at our lack of communication. It was a touching and confusing conversation, because I thought Facebook told me all what’s needed to know about her daily life. These day’s I’m trying to call more people to say hello and listen to them. 

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Parade.com: Citrus Orzo Salad with Smoked Salmon

Citrus Orzo Salad with Smoked Salmon

Over Thanksgiving weekend, I ate four slices of my dad’s German Chocolate Cake, half of his sweet potato pie, one slice of my aunt’s famous buttery two-layer vanilla cake with chocolate frosting, and another piece of celebration vanilla cake. Of course, those were just the desserts. The following Monday, I was in the gym running, lifting weights, and stretching my body into redemption. There’s the traditional reason for this type of gluttonous eating during this time of year: The body needs the extra fat to keep warm during the colder months. Then, there’s the modern reason: Guilty am I of being greedy.  Continue reading Parade.com: Citrus Orzo Salad with Smoked Salmon

Seafood on My Mind

Linguine with Clams and Shrimp

There’s seafood on my mind. Crawfish. Oysters. Crab. Scallops. Shrimp. Hopefully lobster. All seasoned with Southern spices and lure. I’m thinking of creole dirty rice. French cooking techniques mixed Southern flavors. Spicy red beans and rice. Gumbo seasoned with filé. Jazz music inspired from my Motherland. Warm weather on the gulf coast. Why? I’m going to New Orleans. It’s my first time. The trip is sponsored by The Gulf Seafood Marketing Coalition. Besides enjoying my favorite cuisine (on location), I’m learning how the seafood industry is moving on after a disastrous oil spill.  Continue reading Seafood on My Mind

Welcome to The Republic of Tea

Ginger Peach Tea Mussels and Shrimp

A long time ago, friends highly recommended two dollar boxes filled with 30 bags of green tea. It was the trendy, recently discovered (in Western culture) ingredient. Everyone was talking about all its health benefits, such as weight loss, clear skin, detox and low cholesterol. It cures (fill in your health problem here). Back then, I drank a cup in the morning and another cup in the afternoon. Then, one day as I was strolling in the health food store, I picked up a nicely designed steel can of 50 green tea in unbleached bags (free of unnecessary tags, strings and staples). As a designer, I was immediately attracted to the packaging. The label had all the buzz words demonstrating good citizenry in the world: organic, The People’s Green Tea and social good activities. The first sip was refreshing. The second sip I threw the cheap green tea boxes away. The third sip, I wanted to learn more about tea inspired by The Republic of Tea.

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Tarragon Sweet Potato Crepes with Roast Asparagus and Shrimp topped with Parmesan Cream Sauce

Tarragon Sweet Potato Crepes with Asparagus and Shrimp topped with Parmesan Cream Sauce

At the last minute, I decided to enter North Carolina Sweet Potato Commission Inc.’s “No More ‘Mallows! Blogger Recipe Contest,” which ends today–March 31, 2012. Sweet potatoes are one of my favorite comfort food ingredients. My first taste was Aunt Anne’s candied dish to adore. As a Brownie in the Girl Scouts, someone brought a pureed sweet potato dish topped with marshmallows to a potluck event. That’s when my true love for sweet potatoes was realized. The marshmallows won me over. Continue reading Tarragon Sweet Potato Crepes with Roast Asparagus and Shrimp topped with Parmesan Cream Sauce