hualalai

I am insanely lucky to have the best family and friends who love me unconditionally. I have no idea how I got so blessed. They are there to support me, inspire me with their many talents, pick me up when I’m down, go on crazy adventures with me, listen, laugh, be stupid with, and make me want to be a better version of myself. To top off my blessings this month I am so very excited to be going on a solo trip to Hawaii tomorrow where I will be meeting my wonderful parents and connecting with old friends. It is always a good idea to get away and take care of yourself, even if it means going for a hike, getting a massage or simply eating a good meal with a friend (or solo). My best friend came over for dinner tonight and we decided we would do a healthy Hawaiian inspired meal. I got most of the ingredients at the Santa Cruz Farmers Market, which I try to make time to visit as often as possible. We were busy chatting and catching up on life, so the measurements and ingredient list are approximations today, but I’m confident that these are simple enough to copy.

rainbow chard

For the Greens (recipe inspiration from my beautiful vegan friend Lindsey):

I picked up Red Russian Kale and the above picture Rainbow Chard at the Santa Cruz Downtown Farmer’s Market. Cut the ends off the chard, take the stems out of kale, or in my case ask your girlfriend to rip the leaves while your prep the seafood. If you use Lacinato (also called Tuscan) make sure you get rid of the stems, they are tough, kitchen scissors are helpful. Baby Kale is a good alternative if you do not want to do the prep work, and we’re lucky to have some great local options. Roughly chop the greens. Blanch the greens by placing them in a colander or strainer and pour boiling water very slowly over the greens. Lindsey recommended using a tea pot and it worked perfectly.

Place greens in a bowl and toss with sesame oil, toasted sesame seeds, salt, ground red chili flakes and a dash of soy sauce to taste. Use your best judgement depending on how many greens your using. When toasting sesame seeds (you can use black or white) it is easier to use a soup pot because they bounce about and easily burn so keep them moving.

You can make this dish with any greens, such as broccolini, green beans, broccoli rabe, mustard greens, asparagus….

red russian kale

For the Hawaiian inspired fish (sorry Lindsey):

I used tilapia because it was fresh and the right price. You can use any white fish, like halibut, that takes on the flavor of what you are cooking. I added 1 tablespoon of canola oil and a little butter to a frying pan. Add 1-2 shallots and 2 cloves of garlic and let soften. Salt and pepper the tilapia and add to the pan. Flip the fish. You can break it up a little if you like. Add a dash of white wine to deglaze the pan and let simmer on very low.

For a little tropical addition that I usually use on my fish tacos, I made a basic mango salsa with:

1 ripe mango
fresh lime
1/2 diced red onion
cilantro
salt
jalapeño or serrano

I used pretty cilantro sprouts I found at the Farmer’s Market as a garnish on the fish, I love micro greens, especially arugula and sunflower.

The BEST part of this meal was spending time with a dear friend, fresh ingredients, and simplicity. This is what life is about. Aloha!

Photo Jan 15, 7 25 51 PM (1) tropical-dinner-036 Photo Jan 15, 7 27 16 PM (2)

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