“DIY Spezi” or “How to spice up your Diet Soft Drink”

Except for the occasional 7-year old at the Taco-Bell self serve soda fountain, people in the US don’t seem to be fond of mixing up their soft drinks.  It’s a shame if you think about it.  Those standard sodas can become boring day after day, particularly the diet sodas could use some spicing up.  While … Read more

Yummy Lactose Free Milk Alternative – Horchata

Horchata is a drink made out a variety of different base ingredients ranging from almonds, sesame seeds, rice, barley, tigernuts or melon seeds. Originally from Valencia in Spain, Horchata has spread and been adapted through much of Latin America. With lactose intolerance increasing and cow’s milk generally loosing appeal, Horchata is a perfect milk substitute … Read more

Scrumptious Recipe using two favorite Mexican ingredients Huauzontle and Pipicha

This scrumptious recipe highlights two of the most unique ingredients found in Mexican cuisine: Huauzontle and Pipicha Huauzontle Huauzontle, or  Chenopodium nuttalliae, also called Aztec spinach or Aztec broccoli is one of those ancient foods from the precolonial world.  While it used to be more of a poor man’s food, Huauzontle has now become a … Read more

Gummy Bear Fruit – Eating a Starfruit or Carambola

Although the starfruit is originally from Southeast Asia, it is now grown in many temperate regions of the world including Latin America, Australia and the southern USA.  The plant is readily available in US supermarkets since its first commercial introduction dates back to the 1970s.   The US variety “Arkin” is what you are most likely … Read more

Go Nuts for Ginkgo Nuts – Finding, Harvesting, Processing and Cooking Ginkgo Nuts

Ginkgo biloba is a tree that is fairly unnoticed until the fall when it shows off its beautiful golden colors or less excitingly when the vile smell of the tree’s fruit permeates the air.  The tree is fairly common as it is hardy in zones 3-8.  Unfortunately, homeowners often cut their trees down when they … Read more

Vegetable Greens for the hot and humid summer – Malabar Spinach and Edible Amaranth

Just because you live in the hot and humid south – doesn’t mean you have to skimp on your greens – while lettuce, spinach, kale & co. generally do not do well in a hot and humid summer – there are two excellent greens that thrive in such an environment. Introducing: Malabar Spinach and Edible … Read more

The Ultimate Guide to making fresh healthy Smoothies – it’s not as difficult as you think.

I’ve been drinking smoothies for a few years now, mostly because I find it to be the easiest way to get my veggies.  I’ve found there to be lots of misconceptions though – I think people are really overthinking the concept of a smoothie – so here is the low down to get you started. … Read more

Heavenly rice topper – Pork Floss – Pork Sung – Rousong – Pork Cotton Candy

I remember having had some of this delicious rice topper in Japan a few years ago, but had not really thought about obtaining some of it here until I ran across it in the local Chinese Store. Rousong, also called meat floss, pork floss, meat wool and various other names, is pork that is boiled … Read more

The most delicious herbs (rau thom) hail from Vietnam – how to root them for free in just water

One of the things you notice quickly when sampling Vietnamese cuisine is the abundance of fresh herbs; herbs you probably have never seen or eaten.  Vietnamese herbs tend to be served on the side and used in dipping and raw in combination with the main dish. On our trip through Vietnam, there were few meals … Read more

Tired of Kimchi with MSG? Make your own !

There does seem to be a tendency in Asian countries to overuse MSG.  I remember cooking lunch with all natural ingredients over an oven pit fire in a tribal village in the high mountain plains of Vietnam with an indigenous family   Suddenly the mother reached for a bag of “salt” to add to the meal … Read more