I realized just the other day that I’ve been lagging a bit with My Week in Food. I guess I’ve been busy settling into the New Year, and among other things, updating older recipes, such these Collard Green Tacos with Tomatillo Salsa.  If you’ve never made your own salsa before, you won’t believe how easy it is.

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I’ve been hitting it hard with the veggies since the first of the year. I spent a Sunday afternoon with my oldest daughter, home from college, cutting and roasting everything from cauliflower to kale. We ate them for breakfast, lunch and dinner all week long with this Lemon Tahini Dressing  in heavy rotation to drizzle over the top.

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I’m pretty smitten with a Marcella Hazan tomato sauce that showed up in the Sunday paper a few weeks ago, largely because it’s ridiculously simple to make. I’ve cooked it twice now, once exactly as written and once subbing in olive oil for half the butter. Both were top notch. Try it!

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Also top notch is my brother’s new cocktail-centric eatery, The Saratoga. It just got a sweet three-star review in the SF Chronicle. If you are local or coming for a visit, grab a seat and don’t overlook the vegetables on the menu. They’re a highlight. 
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I’ve been winding down on book events, but have a series of fun cooking demos at Sprouts Markets over the next few months. The highlight of my last event? Meeting Chef Ava Marie, an autistic chef with a deep passion for cooking. She showed up at my demo with her own copy of Rise & Shine so I could sign it. Made my week. Follow her cooking adventures on Facebook.

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I’ve been thinking a lot about sugar this week having read this review of Gary Taubes’s new book, The Case Against Sugar. I am a fan of limiting foods that aren’t so good for us and I know that as a country we are eating far too much of the sweet stuff. However, I’m not a fan of food-focused scare-mongering, which is what this book and the media coverage around it seem to be doing. SO (perhaps in protest), I made a crazy-good, sugar-filled, dark chocolate-flecked meringue bark and enjoyed very bite. It’s a spin on a recipe in Shauna Sever’s terrific cookbook Real Sweet.

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I’ve been a little obsessed with trying to knock off the so-good shaved Brussels sprouts salad at Barbuto in New York City since my visit last month. I shaved the Brussels using the slicer blade of my Cuisinart (easier than a mandolin), added loads of grated Pecorino, loads of Meyer lemon juice, olive oil, salt, pepper, and toasted almonds. It approached, but did not fully achieve, Barbuto salad greatness. I just may need another visit to NYC for more research, right?

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Quick and dirty breakfast for Rosie on her way out the door to the bus one morning: whole grain toaster waffles, almond butter, diced pear, chia seeds.   
slow cooker french toastI got a little more involved with breakfast the next day, making this Slow Cooker French Toast. It’s studded with Medjool dates and terrific reheated the next day. I’ve also got my eye on the line up of lighter French toast ideas over on Cooking Light. 

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Pulled another old favorite from the archives: this kale salad. My opinion that this is a Kale Salad Kids Love was confirmed when my intern, an avowed kale avoider, gave it a thumbs up.  (p.s. I love these bamboo bowls from Ekobo. Your kids can knock them off the counter and they don’t break).

img_4182And if we are going to talk old favorites, who was a fan of French bread pizza back in the day? Stouffer’s Lean Cuisine’s version sustained me through much of college. Here I split a whole grain baguette in two, spread each one with olive tapenade, leftover tomato sauce, and Mozzarella cheese. Leftovers went into lunch boxes.

How was your Week in Food?