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Tomatoes Galore & Not The Corn We Expected: It’s Autumn Corn.

June 26th, 2016 No comments

Home Grown Tomatoes

Our garden and Tomatoes continue to flourish — Yeah!  Now I must put all to good use.  I’m currently oven roasting the pictured Cherry Tomatoes at 200˚ in the oven for approximately 4 – 5 hours.  They always turn out great that way.  And I’m contemplating what to do with the rest of them.  Most likely they’ll become a Soup or Sauce, or just had with a little Olive Oil, Kosher Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper.  We’re growing Basil too, a supplement for all the big plans.

Autumn Corn

As for the pictured Corn, we plan to set it aside until October.  They are beautiful and hard as a rock. We thought we were growing edible Yellow Corn, but found these under the husks.  Not sure if it’s something we did or if the baby plants were wrongly marked.  Either way, we’re pleasantly surprised and look forward to seeing what our other corny-children will look like. 😉  It’s exciting.

Oh How Nibbles Of Tidbits’ Garden Grows: It’s A Better Year Here.

May 4th, 2016 No comments

Blackberries

Much is growing here this year.  It’s something I’ve always wanted.  An edible garden.  I want to grow everything possible to eat — Fruit, herbs, vegetables, berries, nuts, you name it.  It would be a dream come true. Though we’re unable to grow everything, it’s a better crop than last year.

Blackberries

Blackberries.

Pineapple

Pineapples.

Grapes

Grapes forming on healthy vines.

Planters

Six different types of Tomatoes, four stalks of Corn, seven Walla Walla Onions, and three types of Sweet Peppers are growing strong, while Cesar the tortoise mows the backyard lawn.

Early Growth

Before (above) and after (below) in just weeks — Corn, Tomatoes, Peppers and Onions are taking off.

Growing Fast

Herbs (Baby Basil, Oregano, Mint, Chives and Thyme), Jalapenos, Arugula, Fennel, Dill and various kinds of Lettuce are doing well in our other raised garden.  A couple seeds we planted I can’t recall.

Herbs

Heirloom Tomatoes are starting to form — It’s a beautiful sight.  All looks healthy.

Tomatoes

Boysenberries — We bought a Boysenberry plant from Knott’s Berry Farm and now see a mini berry.

Boysenberries

Lemons — A staple for zest and juice in many dishes.

Lemon

Strawberries — The birds or something else usually gets them before we do.

Strawberries

Too many Tangelos sometimes, but we appreciate the tree.

Oranges

Two Pineapples are clearly visible with the potential for two more.

Pineapples

Spring is springing — We’re grateful for all that grows and lives.  Thanks to God.

Leon and Cesar

If all goes well, we’ll be thrilled to show a bounty this summer.

Garden Update:  June 12, 2016 (check back for future updates and bounty).

The ‘Superfood Side’ That Replaced Coleslaw At Chick-Fil-A.

April 12th, 2016 No comments

Super Food Salad

Though sad that Chick-Fil-A removed Cole Slaw from their menu, the pictured Superfood Side that replaced it is quite flavorful.  In fact I’ve been craving it ever since trying it.  I’ve now had it a few times for lunch aside Chicken Nuggets.  It’s funny and unexpected, since I liked Chick-Fil-A’s Cole Slaw so much.  I didn’t want to like their Superfood Side, whatever the heck it was, I initially thought.  Now I REALLY like it, ha.  It’s a tasty combination tossed in a tangy Maple Vinaigrette.

Note:  If you miss Chick-Fil-A’s Cole Slaw too, the recipe is posted here.

No More Cole Slaw At Chick-Fil-A: Making Way For A Superfood Side.

March 9th, 2016 No comments

Chick-Fil-A Cole Slaw

What?  No more Cole Slaw at Chick-Fil-A?  Really?  I don’t think it’s a good decision, but it does ease my disappointment a bit to have the recipe.  Chick-Fil-A says they removed Cole Slaw from their menu to make room for their new Superfood Side (pictured below courtesy of Chick-Fil-A).

Superfood-Side

Their Superfood Side is actually a Kale Salad with Broccolini, Roasted Nuts and Dried Sour Cherries, which sounds good to me, but I think Chick-Fil-A’s Cole Slaw would appeal to more people, especially since it was a darn good Cole Slaw.  Everyone doesn’t like Kale.  Please bring back the Cole Slaw.

Cole Slaw Recipe

Until then, here’s the recipe if you liked Chick-Fil-A’s Cole Slaw too.

Update on 04/12/16:  Review of Chick-Fil-A’s Superfood Side.

Winning Salad Ingredients Inspired By Blue Apron Meals.

September 27th, 2015 No comments

Winning Quinoa Bean Salad

It was Red Quinoa, introduced by Blue Apron, that inspired me to create the pictured Red Quinoa and Garbanzo Bean/Chickpea Salad, with Shallots, Parsley, Mint, Arugula, Toasted Slivered Almonds, Red Wine Vinegar, Dijon Mustard, Olive Oil and Salt & Pepper.  It was for the OC Fair’s Culinary Arts Competition this year and I won a 5th Place Ribbon for it.  Measurements aren’t listed, because they didn’t need to be submitted — I just fine tuned the combination until it tasted great and now it’s a Salad I’ll forever make in varying combinations, with Quinoa, Beans and Nuts.

Winning Ribbons

I won a second 5th Place Ribbon for a different Salad using Orzo Pasta, Broccoli and Pine Nuts.

We’re Still Growing And Cookin’ Here On Nibbles Of Tidbits.

September 22nd, 2015 No comments

Freis West Garden

How does your garden grow?  Quite well as shown, though contrarily slow here and there.

Red Cabbage

There’s no shortage of food material and much fodder for here, nor lack of hot and woody Radishes growing in our garden, just a preoccupation with eating and cooking with a current minor in writing.

Eggplant Growing

Other than the abundant, less than pristine Radishes, our Red Cabbage, Eggplant, Beets and Carrots continue to truck along, while the Peppers, Peas, Onions and Beans crawl along, like the reporting here lately, but more is always to come and often.  Life is good.  We’re growing too.

Inspiration And Growth: The Largest Onion We’ve Ever Seen.

July 7th, 2015 No comments

Giant Onion

Would you believe we grew this?  You shouldn’t because we didn’t.  We bought it at the Fullerton Market in downtown Fullerton.  Though I had a Sweet Onion at home, I had to get this giant one for $3.  You can see the size difference below, although it was more impressive in person. People stopped us to ask what it was.  It should’ve been entered in the Orange County Fair.

Onion Size Scale

We continue to tend to our real life garden and we’re starting to see the Radishes, Carrots, Eggplant, Purple Cabbage, Sweet Onion, Green Onion and possibly the Swiss Chard grow — We have a long way to go to grow such a large Onion and will be happy growing one that’s any size.

Tend To Your Garden: Hopefully It’ll Be Vegetables Galore Here.

June 28th, 2015 No comments

Raised Garden

In two raised garden beds newly built by my wonderful husband and part-time Nibbles of Tidbits photographer, Matt, we planted seeds to grow Carrots, Radishes, Beets, Purple and Green Cabbage, Eggplant, Sweet Onions, Swiss Chard, Butter Lettuce, Broccoli and a Lettuce mix — I THANK him for making one of my dreams come true.  I’ve always wanted a vegetable garden and ideally hope to grow most food plants available to utilize and enjoy on a daily basis, but happily start here.

First Sprouts

After only a few days we’re seeing life — What a joy.

Vegetables Identified In Chaulk

We’ve been excited to check and tend to them each day.  Much attention will be given.

Home Garden

Check back to see how all develop — We’re hopeful for free food.

Watching Angler Chronicles: Smoke Them If You’ve Caught ‘Em Sergio.

March 29th, 2015 No comments

With Sergio of Angler Chronicles

Have you seen Angler Chronicles on FOX Sports West Television?  We’re with its host and accomplished fisherman, Sergio (above) at the annual Fred Hall Fishing Tackle & Boat Show in Del Mar.  He’s a cool dude.  Matt, a state record holding fisherman himself watches Sergio on Angler Chronicles every week and now I will too.  The show brings viewers to the best wide open, fresh water and salt water sportfishing action on the west, including Southern California, Mexico, British Columbia, Alaska and Panama.  We’d love to fish with Sergio and the gang sometime.

Matt & Sergio

Matt quickly showing Sergio his state record so not to be too much of a geek.

Smoking FishTrout on Smoker      Smoked Trout

The Angler Chronicles gang needs RECIPES — As Matt and possibly I catch more Fish, more recipes will be developed.  Until then, smoke them if you’ve caught them, as there’s not much better than fresh Smoked Fish.  I recently smoked Rainbow Trout caught from Irvine Lake by a neighbor. After about 4 1/2 Hours of smoking with Hickory and Mesquite Wood Chips, every Trout no matter size was moist, smoky and cooked perfectly throughout (before smoking above left/after above right).

TIPS: Stuff the inside of most whole Fish with foil to have the Fish set/swim upright on the grill, so you won’t need to turn them and they’re less likely to stick to the grill.  Keep the Fish covered with smoker or grill lid.  Maintain water in the pan above the heat and keep all smoking by adding coal and soaked and dry wood chips when necessary.  Tips are good, but each smoker is different.

RECIPES: Several recipes using Yellowtail are linked here.  Keep checking Fish & Shellfish for more.

The Catch Of The Month Is Yellowtail: Fruits Of ‘The San Diego’ Labor.

November 2nd, 2014 No comments

Yellowtail Smoked Fish

My husband, Matt recently went on a 3/4 day sport fishing vessel called The San Diego and caught some nice-sized Yellowtail.  He brought home approximately twenty pounds of fillets and one whole Yellowtail for smoking.  It was Operation Yellowtail at our house.  We prepared several dishes immediately, gave a few fillets to neighbors and co-workers and froze the rest.

Matt's Yellowtail

The San Diego is known as one of the best sport fishing vessels in San Diego and Matt agrees. He loves fishing and even holds a state record for catching the largest California Sheephead Fish at 30lbs., 8oz., from his kayak in 2009.  It was quite impressive, like the Yellowtail above.

Yellowtail 004

As shown, we smoked the whole Yellowtail for 4 1/2 hours and it turned out amazing.

Yellowtail SmokerSmoking YellowtailSmoked Yellowtail on SmokerYellowtail Accompaniments

It was tender and flaky with the perfect amount of smoke flavor.

Eating Smoked Yellowtail

Smoked Yellowtail is a real treat with Cocktail Sauce, Lemon Caper Dill Sauce, Sharp Cheddar Cheese, Cream Cheese, Red Onions, Capers, Pickles, Crackers, Red Bell Peppers and Pickles.

Smoked Yellowtail and Accompaniments

On the first day, I made Ceviche and Poke with a few of the Yellowtail fillets.

Ceviche and Poke

The Ceviche was simply made with Red Onions, Red Bell Peppers, Jalapenos, Cilantro, Lime and Lemon Juice — The Yellowtail marinated quickly and was ready to eat in 15 minutes.

Yellowtail Ceviche

Another batch of chopped Yellowtail was mixed with Soy Sauce, Ponzu Sauce, grated Ginger and Green Onions to make Poke, which was pretty much ready to eat immediately too.

Yellowtail Poke

We grilled Yellowtail fillets and ate ’em with a Mango Salsa made with fresh cut Mango, Red Bell Peppers, Red Onions, Jalapenos, Cilantro and Lime Juice — It was all so fresh tasting.

Yellowtail with Mango Salsa

We fried Yellowtail fillets to have with leftover Lemon Caper Dill and Cocktail Sauce.

Fried Yellowtail

Yellowtail fared well with all preparations — Raw (Hamachi), rare, smoked, grilled and fried.

Yellowtail Fried with Sauce

The rest was frozen to later prepare differently — Perhaps bake, stew and/or broil, etc.

Yellowtail Frozen

Preparation of the frozen Yellowtail fillets shall be posted as updates below.

Yellowtail Recipe Update:  Yellowtail Chowder.  Check back for more to be linked here.

There Are No Bananas Here: April Fools, Only Dolphins.

April 1st, 2014 No comments

Mariscos, Pressure Cooker 020

Bananas in the HOUSE indeed — See them?  It’s not always clear.  I see Matt, and I see… 😉 .

Crispy Green Crispy Fruit On The Way To The Deep Blue.

February 10th, 2014 No comments

Cruise 002

It wasn’t easy saving these Crispy Fruit as munchies for our cruise,  because I LOVE Freeze Dried Fruit, and admit I did eat Crispy Green’s Crispy Tangerine too quickly to photograph it.

Cruise 009

Pictured above is the Crispy Fruit Pineapple aka Freeze Dried Pineapple — It is indeed crispy, like a Chip, and should not be confused with Dried Fruit, generally with a chewy texture.

Cruise 009

We were leaving Miami here for Puerto Rico, St. Thomas and St. Maarten, amongst the Virgin Islands, with bon voyage Fresh Apples and its Freeze Dried counter-part pictured below.

Cruise 005

The Apples were equally crunchy and crisp, either way — Fresh and/or Freeze Dried.

Cruise 004

Crispy Green makes it right, and crispy, which is everything to good Freeze Dried Fruit.

Cruise 002

It was then on to planning our first breakfast on the Celebrity Reflection — Sail back for more.

Thanksgiving Day Vegetable Platter: Could You Recreate This?

November 9th, 2013 No comments

Thanksgiving Veggies

How to contribute to Thanksgiving — Make this Turkey Vegetable Platter for your family and/or friends.  One friend is making this for her family on Thanksgiving and she’s going to send us a photo when it’s done.  We’ll be posting it here in an update.  That ain’t no jive.

Light & Healthy Califoriental Cuisine At Ho Sum Bistro: Combo Salad.

August 26th, 2013 No comments

Ho Sum Salad 006

“You’ve got to try the Combo Salad at Ho Sum Bistro” I’ve heard (and read) over and over.  It’s like… “You’ve got to see the baby” on Seinfeld — Well, I finally tried it aka saw the baby, and it’s not breathtaking.  In real world terms, it’s okay, better than the TV reference.

Ho Sum Salad 003

The Combo Salad is the Ho Sum Chicken Salad (Roasted and shredded Chicken Breast with Lettuce and Red Ginger Dressing) and the Sesame Seed Chicken Salad (Romaine Lettuce tossed with Sesame Seeds, Almonds, shredded Chicken and a Sesame Oil and Vinegar Dressing) combined.  It’s good, but next time I’d try a few Dim Sum dishes I saw on the menu.

Ho Sum Salad 011

It’s a lot of Salad.  Pictured is the 1/2 Combo Salad to go — Two can share it.

Chipotle’s Sofritas: Shredded Tofu Braised With Chilis And Spices.

July 3rd, 2013 No comments

Chipotle 001

You can’t see the Sofritas under the tasty selection of toppings on my Chipotle Salad, and don’t be afraid when you do — Chipotle’s Sofritas are made with shredded Tofu that’s braised with Chipotle Chilis, roasted Poblanos and aromatic Spices.  Its spiciness makes it desirable.

Chipotle 011

Sofritas is an option for vegans or anyone who likes its flavor — We eat it all.

Chipotle 002

It looks like this (below) and probably better in person. 😉

Chipotle 004

Chipotle Mexican Grill always seems to be busy, but the line usually moves along quickly.

Chipotle 015

You have to slow the employees down to get exactly what you want, but it’s okay, I guess.

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They’re making a Burrito for another and a Burrito Bowl and Crispy Tacos with Sofritas for us.

Chipotle 020

Guacamole costs extra — I’m going to want a BIG scoop, thank you.

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I love Chipotle’s delicate, crispy Taco Shells, but one must eat ’em fast for optimum crunch.

Chipotle 025

At times I could imagine I was eating Ground Beef Tacos instead of Tofu ones.

Chipotle 031

Though Sofritas is good, there’s a Barbacoa mountain to climb — I LOVE it, as evidenced here.

Chipotle 016

Chipotle’s MENU has something for all — It’s easy to have a good meal there.

Underestimated Goodness: Spotlight Needed When Had Every Day.

June 25th, 2013 No comments

Avocado, Sourdough, Sriracha, Olive Oil, S&P

It’s toasted Sourdough Bread and sliced Avocado drizzled with Olive Oil and spattered with several evenly distributed dots of Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce with Salt & Pepper.  This snack, lunch, dinner and/or breakfast was originally prepared to fill the What to Make with Avocados post and to best use all the California Avocado Commission Avocados received, but I’m now having this tasty combination (almost) every day.  It’s simple to prepare, yet so very good.

Honor System Fruit Stand: Weigh & Pay With No One Around.

June 23rd, 2013 No comments

Sequoia 008

On the way home from Sequoia National Park, we stopped at this Honor System Fruit Stand on the side of the road — I can’t recall exactly where it was, but we thought it was great.

Sequoia 011

We weighed out a lb. of Peaches, Plums & Nectarines, inserted money and went on our way.

We Heart Watermelon Days Of Summer: More Ways To Love You.

June 21st, 2013 No comments

Watermelon 1

We heart the longest day of the year, then we eat it — Time for refreshing foods and fun.

Hydration Countdown From Cucumbers To Pears.

June 20th, 2013 No comments

Hydration

It’s easy to eat all above, especially Blueberries and Pineapple — Stay hydrated my friends.

Eating A Banana In Public Can Be Tricky For Anyone: Just Bite It Man.

May 1st, 2013 No comments

Funny Food 61

Best to slice ’em for Bananas Foster, Banana Cream Pies, Banana Bread, Banana Splitsetc.

Funny Food 56

Photo credits here and here.

Then I’m Gonna Kiss Your Pineapple: It’s Pickin’ Day Under The Light.

April 29th, 2013 No comments

Pineapple 001

It’s easy to grow a Pineapple in a pot, or at least Mr. Freis makes it look that way.

Pineapple 006

You don’t have to live in Hawaii to enjoy the splendor and luxury of growing a Pineapple.

Pineapple 008

It takes a long time to grow — At least 2 years before it first bears fruit.  Know that.

Pineapple 010

It’s a special day when your homegrown Pineapple is ready to pick and eat.  Exciting!

Pineapple 011

Cut it off the stalk, trim excess stalk if necessary and voila — You’ve got a Pineapple.

Pineapple 061

It’s like you chose a perfectly ripe, juicy Pineapple, but instead grew and picked it — Brilliant.

Pineapple 068

It’s a magnificent thing — I’m grateful for the visual experience, education and tasting.

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Let’s get more Pineapple growing ASAP — It’s going to take a while, but it’s worth it.

Pineapple 074

We’re also growing grapes and may attempt Wine — Post title inspired by a B-52’s song.

Sweetheart You Must Know ‘Yolanda’s Fridge’ Of Beverly Hills!?

April 2nd, 2013 No comments

Yolanda's Fridge 1

Meet Yolanda’s FridgeThe latest STAR on the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.  It would inspire me to cook and eat (and drink) well.  All is easily identifiable and accessible.  It’s pretty like Yolanda too, and better stay pretty since it’s a walk-in fridge with see-through doors.  I love its contents in both photographs.  Pre-washed and ready to eat is a most ideal treat.

Yoland's Fridge

Where’s the Grey Poupon?  Hopefully there’s a hidden fridge too for the less attractive food, condiments and leftovers.  I wonder!?  Yolanda’s Fridge is on Twitter — Why not ask it.  Huh?

What To Make With All Those Avocados: Several Ideas To Consider.

March 22nd, 2013 No comments

Avocado Dishes 007

THANKS to the California Avocado Commission for all this goodness — Since we had so many Avocados, we ate a lot of Avocado dishes/meals.  You name it, we made almost everything.

Veggie Sandwich with Avocado

Most are familiar Avocado favorites and some ideas came from others linked throughout.

Egg Baked in Avocado

We made them all from top down — Starting with Snow Crab Stuffed Avocados made with Mayo, Lemon Juice and Zest, Red Bell Pepper, Dill and Red Onion.  Simple, rich and amazing.

Avocado with Italian Dressing

Continuing with a Veggie Croissant Sandwich made with Salad Bar Vegetables, Avocado, and Cream Cheese instead of Mayo.  An Egg Baked in an Avocado — Have you seen that one before?  It’s different and not bad.  And I could eat an Avocado with Good Seasons Italian Dressing (above) everyday.  It’s ready in minutes and always satisfies.  On to Mango Salsa.

Avocado Dishes 016

Mango Salsa ingredients, plus Jalapeno are pictured above and combined below.

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BLT Sandwich, plus A+, minus the L & T on this day.

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Open-faced BLT, plus A, minus L — Avocado was mashed with a little Mayo.

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Avocado Pizza (if you will) made with a Flour Tortilla, mashed Avocado drizzled with Olive Oil and Lemon Juice, topped with a Fried Egg, Cumin and Salt & Pepper.  I overcooked this Egg.

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It could be better next time — The original is much more impressive.

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Black Beans, Corn, Red Bell Peppers, Avocado, Red Onions, Jalapeno and Lime w/EVOO.

Avocado Dish

Cucumber Avocado Salad with Tomatoes, Green Onions, Balsamic Vinegar and Olive Oil.

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Avocado on Toast with Sriracha and Olive Oil — An unexpected new favorite.

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Avocado with Grapefruit — Many say how well it goes together.  It’s okay.

Avocado and Grapefruit

And would you believe Avocado Ice Cream?

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Ours was made with Avocados, Coconut Milk, Milk, Lime Juice and Lime Zest.

Avocado Ice Cream

I didn’t think I’d like the Avocado Ice Cream, but did and would make it again.

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Ahhhhhh Avocados, they’re wonderful to eat and moisturize well — Cheers to Avocados!

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Dogs apparently love them too — I can’t believe we ate ’em all and still want more.

Avocado