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Posts from — May 2013

More Maui

The fabulous lunch we had at Mama’s Fish House was not the only delicious food we had in Maui.

tuna tower

One night we ate at Leilani’s On The Beach. The food was good, and we especially enjoyed the Spicy Tuna Tower -Sushi rice, avocado, micro greens and spicy ahi.

sunset crowd

Honestly though, it was really all about the stunning ocean sunset view. We arrived just in the nick of time, there was a complete frenzy of people trying to get “the perfect shot.”

lahaina, maui sunset

I think I go it!

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May 31, 2013   2 Comments

Mama’s Fish House

mamas entrance

I’m a bit tardy in getting today’s post up… yesterday was a looong and somewhat painful day on the Big Island. I don’t want to focus on that today, since I’m looking back at Maui. I’ll tell and show you (show and tell) about the painful but extraordinary experience in the days to come.

mamas fish house

In the previous post, I told you about our drive down the Road to Hana. On the way back, we stopped at the famed Mama’s Fish House.

mama's front

We were told that if there was one place you Must eat in Maui, it was Mama’s. Thank you to everyone who directed us there!

mamas interior patio

Not only is the food outstanding, fresh, well prepared and expertly presented, but somehow the atmosphere is upscale without being at all stuffy. It is relaxing and laid-back. The decor is so eclectic, it’s a true feast for the eyes.

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May 30, 2013   2 Comments

Maui, Hawaii


As I type this, I am sitting on the patio of a B&B outside of Hilo, Hawaii (the big island) in a torrential downpour. It is 9:40 pm Hawaii time, 12:40 am at home in Arizona. We are at the end of day seven of our trip, but I am going to start this post with Day 1.

lei on patio

We arrived in Maui on Wednesday, May 22nd in the early evening and got to our hotel after sunset.

Rainbow Gum Tree Hawaii.  Road to Hana

On Thursday morning, we hit the ground running. After a room service breakfast at the Royal Lahaina, we took to the “Road to Hana” for the day.

Just the opportunity to see this gorgeous tree, in person, would be worth the drive. It is the rainbow eucalyptus, Mindanao gum, or rainbow gum tree. Isn’t it amazing!?!

surf board fence

But there is more than one pretty tree and a cool surfboard fence to see along the way.

wailele farms

Our first stop was Twin Falls. You enter through a tiny little passage at Wailele Farms.

first fall with swimming hole

There are two separate falls, this is the first, with a lovely swimming hole.

rock tree bridge on trail

After the small fall, you continue to hike another 15 minutes or so and go past this cool rock/tree bridge thing.

twin falls maui

And eventually the path ends at the second, taller fall.

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May 29, 2013   5 Comments

summer salad

I was using up cooked wheat berries that I had left in my freezer from THIS recipe. You could use cooked quinoa, Israeli (pearl) couscous, farro, bulgur, or barley for this delicious and refreshing summer salad.

wheatberry salad

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May 28, 2013   2 Comments

“garbage” pasta

As I mentioned a few days ago, I make it my mission to clean out the fresh food in my refrigerator before we go out of town. The easiest way to do that in the winter is to make a soup and the easiest way the rest of the year is to make pasta. I call this “garbage” pasta, because I’ll put any and everything in it.

garbage pasta

This particular time, I had a partial box of cherry tomatoes plus fresh heirloom tomatoes from my garden. In addition there were partial bags of green beans and sugar snap peas. I always have garlic and onion on hand, so those always start the dish.

The first step is to get a big pot of water boiling. Add salt and blanch vegetables such as the green beans, sugar snap peas, asparagus, snow peas, carrots, broccoli, and cauliflower for a couple minutes. Use a slotted spoon or spider to remove them and have a big bowl of ice water ready to drop them into – to stop the cooking.

Once they’ve cooled down, drain and set aside.


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May 27, 2013   1 Comment

boy’s birthday dinner

Connor requested two things for his birthday dinner – Grilled Pizza and Baby Back Ribs.

I can easily do that and was more than happy to fulfill his modest request!

bbq baby back ribs

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May 26, 2013   1 Comment

lobster + eggs = indulgence

I made Connor a special breakfast to celebrate his birthday. As I’ve mentioned before, Connor loves lobster!


This lobster dinner, 13 years ago in Maine, was to celebrate his birthday too.

lobster soft scrambled eggs

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May 25, 2013   5 Comments

birthday boy and his cake

opening presents

Happy 22nd Birthday to my fabulous son, Connor!

Please know that even though I’m not with you today, you are in my heart and on my mind.  I love you from here to the moon and back! xoxo

wish made

Here is the classic and easy to make chocolate sheet cake I made for my boy. With lots of pictures showing each step. I was camera happy this day!

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May 24, 2013   4 Comments

pesto of your choice

Whenever I’m leaving town for more than a couple days, the first thing I think of, is how to use up all the fresh food in the refrigerator. The night before we leave, I usually make a big “garbage” pasta dish. “Garbage” as in, throwing any and every thing into it.

fresh arugula

I’ll show you what that pasta dish looked like in a future post. Today, I’m showing you what I did with an unopened bag of arugula that would have been too much for the pasta.

I used it to make pesto and then I froze the pesto for later use.

Pesto is a sauce originating in Genoa, which is in the Liguria region of northern Italy (pesto genovese),and traditionally consists of crushed basil, garlic, and pine nuts that are blended with olive oil, Parmigiano Reggiano and Fiore Sardo (cheese made from sheep’s milk). The name is from the word pestâ (Italian: pestare), which means to pound, to crush, in reference to the original method of preparation, with marble mortar and a wooden pestle. The ingredients in a traditionally made pesto are ground with a circular motion of the pestle in the mortar. Nowadays it’s most commonly made in a food processor, at least in the States, it is.

Although basil, Parmesan, and pine nuts are the traditional pesto ingredients, feel free to use any variety and combination of greens or herbs, nuts, and cheese.  Here are just a few combinations to get your creative juices flowing. Mix and match to make your own signature pesto.

  • Cilantro and Pepitas
  • Parsley, Anchovy and Capers
  • Sage, Parsley, and Hazelnuts
  • Spinach in place or in addition to the Basil
  • Mixed Herb; Basil, Mint, Cilantro, Parsley, with Spinach and Asiago
  • Dill, Lemon, Walnut and Romano
  • Fennel Fond

how to clean proccesor blade

I’ve given this tip before, but it merits repeating. When you have a thick or sticky mixture in a food processor. Remove what you easily can with a rubber spatula, then put the bowl back on the machine and process for just a second or two. The stuff on the blade will be thrown off to the sides of the bowl by centrifugal force and you’ll be able to get all the mixture easily from the bowl.

clean blade

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May 23, 2013   1 Comment

vacation-worthy pedicure


Yesterday afternoon, I stopped in for a last-minute pedicure, before hopping on a plane for our first vacation of the summer.


We’re going to a location where pretty toes are a must.

How about a little guessing game as to just where we are jetting off to?

Hint #1 – It’s one of the 50 states.
You have a 1 out of 50 chance to get it right.

Hint #2 – It is bordered by an ocean, gulf, or bay.
1 out of 23 chance

palm trees plus

Hint #3 – It’s the Pacific Ocean that this state borders.
1 out of 5 chance

Do you really need me to narrow it down a bit more?


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May 22, 2013   3 Comments