And Now For Something Completely Different

I am not known to be a domestic goddess by any means. I clean on a regular basis, mainly because I don’t enjoy living in the kind of filth that New York tends to create. Though I don’t go overboard. I mean, why waste time cleaning when you can be laying in bed watching TV? But over the past year I’ve unearthed an interest in cooking thanks to my best friend and holistic health counselor. Previously, my most complex meal involved adding a microwaved bag of veggies in cheese sauce to some pasta. Include some pepper to the mix and I was almost going gourmet. Now, though, I’m getting in the kitchen like a good little woman and making some pretty tasty things. It’s helped me feel like a real grown-up as well as shed quite a few pounds, the only negative is the excessive amount of dish washing afterwards.

Last week I made something called sweet potato shepherds pie, a dish that many of my British friends laugh at because it in no way resembles traditional shepherds pie. The only things the two recipes have in common are carrots and onions, but I’m not worried about it because it’s pure awesome-ness. I’ve been thinking about how good it tastes since I finished it days ago, it’s the best meal I’ve made to date. Today, I’m going to make it again and thought I would capture it’s beauty for you all and share this fabulous fall recipe for you all to enjoy!

First order of business is to cook and mash the sweet potatoes


Then saute the onions and carrots

This process starts making the house smell amazing. It’s the perfect time to sip on a glass of wine while watching the rain outside the window.

This is the part that you add the beans and broth to simmer

After that is all finished, you add the bean and veggie mixture to a casserole dish and lay the sweet potatoes on top to bake in the oven.

All ready to go in the oven!


Finished product right before it went in my belly


See the recipe here: Sweet potato shepherds pie. I omitted the leeks and turnips for no real reason, I just didn’t feel like buying them.

So, there you go! If you end up making it let me know what you think.


*This short, and random, post is due in part to the fact that I’m currently working on a personal essay but didn’t want to go yet another month without being in touch with you guys. I hope to have the thing I’m working on be finished soon so I can maybe get back to normal.



Yan Can Cook and So Can I!

I cooked today. Be very surprised.

All my life cooking consisted of opening a box and throwing the contents in a pot or microwave, and I was happy. But last year, with the threat of my thirtieth birthday looming over my head, I knew I needed to step it up. It was time to stop living like a broke college kid, because I’m a broke adult now. I enlisted the help of my best friend, who had just become a holistic health counselor, for six months of lessons on how to find the balance in life. It worked.

Without even trying, or feeling deprived, I’ve lost thirteen pounds so far. (Ten was the first goal, my fantasy goal is fifteen). That’s a lot considering I’ve always been a skinny girl. (I didn’t even break the hundred pound mark until I was in my mid-twenties). But after years of indiscriminate drinking and late night pizza runs, I ended up with too much jiggle that begged to be dealt with. I also didn’t want to enter into a new decade with the same poor eating habits. There’s a time and a place for Pastaroni, and it’s not twice a week.

My sessions were a combination of visualizing and addressing my physical and emotional needs, as well as experimenting with new ways to treat my body the way it deserves. And after everything I put my body through the past fifteen years of my life, it was the least I could do to try. My stubborn self actually found the changes to be super easy and rewarding. I started cooking for myself on a regular basis, even baking on occasion, and learning that my cooking skills weren’t as bad as I had once believed! Cleaning up afterwards wasn’t even so torturous, and I totally hate washing dishes. 

I have found myself gravitating to one recipe over and over again. It’s a simple mix of kale and white beans. It’s just kale sautéed in olive oil, red pepper flakes, and garlic, with white beans added at the end. (You can really use any green. Last time I made it with bok choy and added eggplant, it was fantastic). I always make enough for a couple days, that way it allows me to feel productive and healthy while still being lazy (which I love more than anything).

So that’s what I made today and I’m super excited to eat it all. I’ll probably have some over a little pasta for dinner tonight and fold some into scrambled eggs tomorrow morning, and then repeat until it’s all gone. I’ve even used it to top cut pieces of baguette for an appetizer. 

I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a simple, tasty, versatile, easy meal because it’s super awesome. (And I’m saying that because it’s been on my mind since I cooked it).

Here’s a picture. Keep in mind, I’m not a professional food photographer. This photo was taken right after I put it in a container to store in the fridge, then I had to separate myself until dinner time.

My masterpiece