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Grain Free

Shrimp Fried Riced Cauliflower

January 28, 2018

Some might call it cauliflower fried rice, but since there is no rice in it (and I hate putting words in quotes) I prefer fried riced cauliflower. It’s not the prettiest dish you will ever eat, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t delicious. Not to mention super simple to throw together. 

Shrimp Fried Riced Cauliflower with Crunchy Slivered Almonds Recipe | Find it at


I was just reading an article last week about ugly food.

It was about all those delicious dishes out there that will never win a photo award no matter how talented the stylist. 

It got me thinking about how this little tidbit influences what I put on the blog. 

I tend to throw together some really tasty and really ugly meals every week. Before I finish cooking, I think, hey, I need to put this on the blog. It’s so good. 

Then I stand there staring at it in my bowl. 

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Rustic Cream of Potato Soup with Lemon and Dill

December 4, 2017
Rustic Cream of Potato Soup with Lemon and Dill Recipe |

We have lemons this year!

It’s been a while. The dwarf Meyer lemon tree I bought at the farmers market in the Bay almost 5 years ago has been through a lot. Pots on a balcony then in a backyard, mild Bay temps, hot Central Valley temps…

But it’s been in the ground for at least a year now, and it seems happy. If you can define happy by about 40 lemons. 

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Roasted Rosemary Carrots and Chickpeas with Walnuts

April 11, 2017
Roasted Rosemary Carrots and Chickpeas with Walnuts Recipe | Fake Food Free

Peas and carrots have never been all that appealing to me. Carrots by themselves, good. Peas by themselves, or maybe in a pasta dish, good. Together? It’s lost on me. I’m simply not a fan. 

So what do I do when I’m not a fan of something? I make my own version. Sub green peas with chickpeas and magically I find one of my favorite side dishes. 

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Riced Cauliflower Chicken Casserole

March 28, 2017
Riced Cauliflower Chicken Casserole Recipe | Fake Food Free

It’s like broccoli rice casserole, but without the broccoli or rice. That’s the first description that came to mind when I made this. Or at least that is what I envisioned when I came up with the recipe. 

I’m still not over riced cauliflower. Maybe the rest of the world is? I don’t know. But I love the stuff. I’m always stir-frying it into things. So last week I thought – why not stir it into things…and then bake it. 

Alas, a casserole was born. 

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Cauliflower Rice with Basil-Spinach Pesto and Chickpeas

October 5, 2016

In this recipe, cauliflower rice is tossed with a spinach and basil pesto and chickpeas. It makes an easy light meal or side dish for anyone at the table because it also happens to be vegan and gluten free. 

Cauliflower Rice with Basil-Spinach Pesto and Chickpeas Recipe | Vegan and Gluten Free | Fake Food Free

I usually post things on Instagram the day I make and shoot them with a note about when they will be live on the blog. Call me old fashioned, but I’m just one of those diehards who still believes in preserving the real-time aspect of social media. Especially those platforms that have a portion of the word instant in their names. 

I typically get a few comments from people who can’t wait to see it, but none quite like this recipe. After posting this cauliflower rice, I not only got comments on Instagram, but also follow up on other social sites about when the recipe would be live. 

I think there is some unspoken rule that says your simplest recipes, the ones you just kind of throw together on a whim, are the ones that garner the most attention. 

That is definitely the case here. 

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Braised Boneless Short Ribs with Citrus Garlic Slaw

December 16, 2015

These boneless short ribs make the best winter comfort food when braised in white wine and served with a seasonal cabbage slaw. The short ribs were among several cuts of high-quality grass-fed beef that I recently received from Butcher Box.

Braised Boneless Short Ribs with Garlic Citrus Slaw | Fake Food Free | Made with grass-fed beef I received from Butcher Box!

Beyond burgers, I don’t claim to be an expert at cooking beef. That’s why I like it when I receive a little something that makes me step out of my comfort zone. This time is was grass-fed boneless beef short ribs. 

Last minute gift idea alert. If you have a beef lover in your life or someone who loves to cook it, Butcher Box is the answer. 

A little while back, I was sent a Butcher Box full of high-quality grass-fed beef. Sirloin tips, steaks, short ribs, ground and bacon. It was loaded with good stuff. 

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Skillet Mushrooms in Rosemary Gravy and Smoked Ham and Olive Spread

November 18, 2015

These savory snacks make a great start to holiday meals. Their rich, earthy flavors are an ideal match for the Cabernet Franc I received from Cultivar Wine.

Skillet Mushrooms in Rosemary Gravy and Smoked Ham and Olive Spread | Holiday Snacks and Appetizers | Cultivar Wine Pairing on Fake Food Free #partner  
The idea of snacks for Thanksgiving day seems a little absurd. It’s not like we really need to include more food in the celebration. And having snacks around certainly isn’t because we need to satisfy hunger. If you are like me, hungry won’t even be a part of your vocabulary for at least 36 hours. 

Yet there is something about little bites to kick off the celebration that feels like a necessity. All that cooking makes you want to eat. Why not take things over the top? It is Thanksgiving after all.

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Simple Slow Cooker Mung Bean Soup

November 11, 2015

Simple Slow Cooker Mung Bean Soup Recipe | Fake Food Free | An easy, comforting meal for the busy holiday season.  
Soon, we’ll be frantically running out to the supermarket to get overlooked ingredients. Soon, we’ll forget what it’s like to shop during the holidays and find ourselves elbowing our way to a check-out line. Soon, we’ll be waiting in line at the post office (something we swore we’d never do again) to get gifts mailed before the last possible hour. 

Soon, no matter how hard we try to stay in control, things are going to get crazy. 

I love the holiday season, crazy or not. So I say bring it on! As long as I have some lights sparkling in the living room and cookies in the oven at some point throughout the season, I’ll take it. 

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Roasted Butternut Squash with Pear and Red Walnuts

October 7, 2015

Roasted Butternut Squash with Pear and Red Walnuts Recipe | Fake Food Free
This butternut squash dish is not sweet. I repeat, this dish is not sweet.

If you are like me, no matter how many versions of winter squash you’ve made or been exposed to, your brain still thinks of nutmeg, cinnamon and maybe even maple, when you envision the rich, orange, tender squash.

Okay, I’ll admit that this does contain cinnamon. But cinnamon is one of those interesting spices that can swing sweet or savory. It this case, it’s savory. 

The secret to this recipe is some heat. You don’t have to burn your mouth off, but use at least a medium spicy chili powder. I could even see a chipotle chili powder working. When you use these deeply flavored spices you get a beautiful balance of slightly sweet squash, with earthy pear, a bit of heat and crunchy walnuts. 

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Chocolate Cherry Goji Bars from Superfood Snacks

July 17, 2015

Chocolate Cherry Goji Bars from Superfood Snacks by Julie Morris | Fake Food Free

There is a good chance that just opening this book will make you healthier. I know it’s a pretty bold claim, but I’m certain it’s true. 

I received a review copy of Superfood Snacks: 100 Delicious, Energizing & Nutrient-Dense Recipes by Julie Morris a few weeks ago and it has been sitting on my desk glowing with health and vibrance ever since. I gladly accepted the offer from Navitas Naturals to review the book. They even sent along some goji berries and cacao nibs so I could make this recipe. But I wasn’t sure what to expect until I finally go the copy. 

It turns out, I’m kind of crazy about it. 

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