Mexican Macaroni and Cheese

April 2, 2014 by Ali

¡Amigos!

I’m finally doing it. I’m cracking open the dictionaries and the textbooks and the verb charts and starting to work on mi español again.

It’s been — ohh — about a decade.

(Yeesh.)

But tickets for a June trip to El Salvador are being booked, I’m feeling the language bug after starting to do more ESL tutoring again, and to be honest — I just love speaking Spanish. I love the rhythm and cadence of it, I love rolling those rrrrr’s, I love conjugating verbs (ok, actually that part isn’t as fun). And more than anything, I love all of the associations and crazy memories that spring to mind of the cool places and people who were a part of teaching me those words way back in the day.

But ay ay ay. I have forgotten so much over the years. Like, a ridiculous amount. So it’s taking a swallow of the ol’ pride and some mega stamina to try and get my brain back in gear. And, you know, maybe some extra Mexican food and margaritas for inspiration. Especially this fusion of Mexi flavors with traditional American comfort food!

In English, I named it Mexican Macaroni and Cheese. But in Spanish, I like to call it perfecto. ;)

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Why I Don’t Use The Term “Food P–n”

April 1, 2014 by Ali

(Quick note: I apologize in advance for the dashes. Apparently if I spell out the p-word, this site can get tagged for a parental advisory on Google. And I’d much prefer to get the point across and keep this listed as a family-friendly site. Thanks!)

So…it’s no secret that I love taking photos of food. I love cooking food, and styling it, and breathing in those yummy smells as I come in for that close-up. I love sharing those photos of food, and blogging about them online. I love oohing and ahhhing over other people’s photos of food. I love that food photography has even turned into a full-time job for me these past few years.

But I have to admit, I do not love the term “food p–n”.

It’s nothing I’ve ever made a big deal about, and it’s not a term I’ll ever judge others for using. As someone who makes a living in the food photography world, I “get” it. I get why the term originated. I get why it’s such an effective buzz word. I get why it is ubiquitous online, especially now that every phone has a camera and food photos (both the appetizing and not-so-appetizing) are literally flooding the internet and social media. I also get that, for the most part, most people probably see the term as totally harmless.

But even after hearing the term for years, I still cringe a bit when I hear it. And I just don’t dig it. It’s not really because of any religious reasons, not because I’m “naive”, not because I’m trying to make it into a bigger deal than it is. I simply feel like we could find a better word. A smarter word. A more accurate word that describes food for what it is. And a word that doesn’t glamorize or normalize or give props to an industry that it is not.

When I googled “food p–n” last night, 636 million results came up. But I couldn’t seem to find a single one that talked about it from this angle, so I thought it might be worth a blog post. I have no doubt there will be many of you who disagree with me, but hear me out?

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Sea Salt and Vinegar Kale Chips

March 31, 2014 by Ali

I have always been a snacker. But for some reason, potato chips were never my thing…until I was introduced to sea salt and vinegar kettle chips from my favorite grocery store a few years ago.

Oh good grief, those chips are good.

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The Friday Five

March 28, 2014 by Ali

It’s Friday! It’s Friday!

On the cheers-ing agenda for the weekend:

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Chocolate Chia Smoothie

March 27, 2014 by Ali

I’m not quite sure how it happened. But somewhere along the lines of the last 2 years of self-employment, after years of a late-to-bed-late-to-rise musician schedule, I have now officially become a morning show person.

Still working on the morning person thing. My body seems bent on the whole nightowl thing. But the blogging world and Twittersphere are up early, so about a year ago I turned on a morning show for the first time in about a decade to help wake me up. And now I basically can’t go a morning without tuning in to at least say a quick hello to Josh, Lara, Robin, George and the gang.

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5-Ingredient Bacon Asparagus Pasta

March 26, 2014 by Ali

I spy with my little eye…bacon…asparagus…pasta…Parmesan…

and?

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4-Ingredient Easter Egg (Golden) Oreo Truffles

March 25, 2014 by Ali

As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, I got a little (ok, a lot) photo-happy with these little Easter Egg Oreo Truffles. So today you’re getting a second post with our second round of truffle decorating using a slightly different filling – Golden Oreos!

That’s right! This batch is made with a simple 2-ingredient filling using cream cheese and the super-sweet, goldenlicious, why-didn’t-they-think-of-those-decades-ago cousin of the traditional Oreo. (Which I secretly love more than traditional Oreos — I know.) Then on the outside, my friend Meg and I dipped these babies in white almond bark and then drizzled on some pastel-colored almond bark for decor. I mean, I loved the brown and white version we posted yesterday. But you can’t have Easter Eggs in life with a little pastel. So for all of you who like color, this idea may be for you.

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4-Ingredient Easter Egg Oreo Truffles

March 24, 2014 by Ali

Hee hee — look what I made!

Actually look what we made! My designer friend, Meg, was the one who dreamed up the idea for these cute little truffles when she was in town visiting for a few days last week. I told her that I was long overdue for some sort of cutesy recipe on the blog. And being the fab designer that she is, she dreamed up a cutesy idea for Easter that turned out to be a little hip and classy-looking too. Because, you know, that’s how designers roll. ;)

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