Four years ago, we had the pleasure of visiting Japan for the first time. Adam’s band was performing at the Fuji Rock Festival, high in the mountains three hours north of Tokyo. After the last show, the rest of the group went home while the two of us ventured around the country for ten days, falling completely in love with the Japanese people and their inspiring culture. We took bullet trains to Tokyo, Kyoto, Nara, Miyajima, and Hiroshima, traveling across the countryside, spending a few days in each city, visiting pristine gardens and ancient Buddhist temples, while learning where to find the best vegetarian meals and how to properly ask for them. Throughout the day, we often found ourselves saying, “watashi wa bejitarian desu,” hoping they would understand that we were politely communicating, “I am vegetarian.” We snacked on inari (sweet tofu pockets filled with sushi rice), we lived off onigiri with umeboshi (white rice triangles wrapped in seaweed with a sour plum center), we found unique tiny restaurants on hidden side streets serving bowls of hot udon noodles, ramen, and miso soup, we tried a savory pancake called okonomiyaki, sampled multiple flavors of sweet mochi candies, and discovered a delicious noodle dish called zaru soba. This light and refreshing entree quickly became our go-to meal in Japan, and since it is served cold, it makes a perfect summertime dinner that is easy to prepare and fun to eat!
Do you hear that? Kids laughing and splashing in the pool, vegetarian burgers sizzling on the barbecue, cool ice cubes clinking in glasses of fruity sangria, a golden retriever slurping from his water bowl, your favorite tunes playing in the background. These are the relaxing sounds of summer which unofficially starts this Memorial Day weekend. We are ready for it and so are the local grocery stores and farmers markets which have already begun over-stocking their shelves with fresh summer produce like sweet juicy peaches and tangy heirloom tomatoes. Dust off your flip-flops, get out your sunscreen and bathing suits (our apologies if you may have gone up a size or two), and let us celebrate warmer weather, school-less beach days, tropical vacation getaways, romantic evening walks, roasting s’mores outdoors, and spending more time with friends and family. Today we would like to welcome this bountiful season with a delicious, crisp corn salad that is a little sweet, a little spicy, and perfect for all your entertaining needs.
Your first meal of the day is the most important: it gives you strength, energy, and focus. It helps decision-making, planning, and regulates your mood. And the best way to do that is with a light, healthy, and nutritious breakfast. You stop and read the title again. Yes, you read it correctly, and we know what you’re thinking: there must be a typo, right? How can the word breakfast follow the words banana pudding? It would be a dream come true if this were so, but it must be a mistake! Well, let us reassure you–there are no typos here, and this is not a dream. Pinch yourself, banana pudding for breakfast is your sweet new reality.
Ice cream is delicious in a cup or a cone
on top of a cake, or beside a scone
on a hot summer day, it’s refreshing and cool
at the beach or beside a pool
in a sandwich or on a stick
bring us both and make it quick
smooth and creamy, a heavenly treat
a tasty way to beat the heat
in a car, on a boat
or simply inside a root beer float
by yourself or on a date
in a bowl or on a plate
breaktime at work or lunchtime at school
doesn’t matter where, there’s not a rule
from an ice cream truck in the afternoon
to a starlit night under a full moon
in layers of clothes or none at all
in the spring or in the fall
standing, running, or lounging in a chair
anytime, any place, anyone, anywhere,
so sit back and relax wherever you may be
and join us as we share this divine recipe!
Last weekend, Los Angeles experienced a rare treat: small droplets fell from grey skies, seeping deep into the ground, plumping up our jade plants, and turning them a deep healthy green. There is something so comforting about staying indoors and making a hot meal on a rainy night, and on Friday that is exactly what we did. It was not even seven o’clock, and we were already lighting candles and slipping into our comfy robes and pajamas. Making a curry dish sounded most appropriate on this cold, wet night, and we had bookmarked a recipe from the new Clever Cookbook that our friend Emilie just released at the end of February that we were eager to try. With a candlelit house, and the soothing sounds of rain hitting the roof, we listened to Django Reinhardt, and started to cook this dish that would soon turn out to be a new favorite.