Breakfast Taco with Avocado and Chipotle Bean Salsa + Que Pasa Foods GIVEAWAY 墨西哥(Taco)塔克餅早餐

Every once in a while, I like to have some fun with different ethnic foods, and since Cinco de Mayo is just around the corner, I thought I'd make an easy and tasty breakfast taco recipe. Besides, I really want to share my new favourite organic products with you - Que Pasa tortilla chips and salsas, and when I say share with you, I mean you'll have a chance to win a yummy prize pack that's filled with Que Pasa goodies! (See details below!) This is a great recipe for your weekend breakfast, brunch, or weekday lunch. Even though it's vegetarian, there is plenty of protein in this delicious taco, thanks to the beans, egg, cheese, and avocado! (In case you'd like to know all the health benefits of avocado, check out this great and useful article here from Health & Fitness Shops.) Be sure to read the giveaway details below. With the prize, you can easily make this delicious breakfast, like I did, in no time!


Green Spring Sushi Rolls with Miso Tofu and Edamame-Lime Cream 味噌豆干與生菜養生壽司和青檸檬毛豆醬

One of the reasons why I love making vegan/vegetarian sushi at home is because good ones are not easy to find. Typically, rice is one of the key ingredients for sushi, but sometimes I like leaving it out, especially in the spring or summer time. This recipe, which I created for Sabatier Santoku knife, is a really good example! The kale filling gives it a wholesome, crunchy texture and a very refreshing taste, while keeping it light. Since April is Earth Month, I wanted to make something vegan, green and springy. With the rice paper and all the veggie filling, it's across between a spring roll and a sushi roll. Though the roll tastes perfectly good by itself with the miso tofu filling, the edamame-lime cream adds a nice, creamy texture as well as an interesting and subtle flavour. Besides tasting great, it's an excellent way to get your daily veggies!


Purple Power Salad 紫色養生沙拉

I love foods that have deep colours, and some days I just crave for a particular colour. This is a salad that I made one day when I was in the mood for something purple (yes, purple is actually one of my favourite colours!). I wanted something very nutritious and hearty, yet light in terms of taste. It'll help boost your immune system and lowers the risk of heart disease and cancer. It turns out to be a truly satisfying meal that I can have again and again without getting tired of it. Besides all the health benefits, it tastes really delicious and looks beautiful, too! It has become one of my all-time favourite salads, and this is why I want to share this special recipe with you. Perhaps it'll become one of yours as well!


Homemade Blueberry Balsamic Vinaigrette 自製藍莓巴薩米可醋沙拉醬

The intense, sweet flavour of balsamic is probably what makes it one of my favourite vinegars. Since the flavour pairs so well with fruits, you often find different flavours of fruity balsamic vinegars/vinaigrettes in stores, but if you look at the ingredients from their labels, cane sugar is usually among the first few ingredients. To make a fruity vinegar is quite easy (see my Peach Balsamic Vinaigrette). You don't need many ingredients or thickening agents, and it tastes much more natural.  With just a touch of maple syrup, real fresh blueberries, balsamic vinegar, and a good extra virgin olive oil, you can make your own vinaigrette that tastes better than just about anything you can find in a store!


Gluten-Free Cheddar-Scallion Potato Scones 巧達起司蘇格蘭馬鈴薯煎餅

When I think of Irish food, besides the cabbage, the beef stew, the Guinness beer, I think of potatoes. For St-Patrick's Day last year, I made some potato scones for my Instagram that were adapted from a recipe at Martha Stewart. I added some parsley and extra cheddar cheese in the recipe. Since the scones were so yummy, I thought I'd make them again this year with a different twist.


Double Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Bread with Crunchy Granola 巧克力花生醬香蕉蛋糕

My husband and I both love banana bread, but when it comes to peanut butter, we're not quite on the same page. As a typical American, he naturally loves anything that has to do with peanut butter - from peanut butter and jelly, Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, he loves them all! As for me, peanut butter wasn't something I grew up with in Taiwan. In my childhood memory, peanut butter wasn't as popular at the time and the Western food was just starting to come into the market. I don't recall that we had much peanut butter at our house. Therefore, I guess I never quite developed a palate for it, but occasionally there are some peanut butter flavoured things that I like. For example, any peanut butter cereal or cinnamon flavoured peanut butter, and this bread here is also one of those rare occasions where peanut butter becomes my good friend.


Red Bean Tang Yuan in Red Bean & Black Glutinous Rice Soup 紅豆湯圓與紫米紅豆湯

Growing up in Taiwan, I naturally ate a lot of tang yuan (glutenous rice balls or sticky rice balls). Traditionally, we eat them on both the Winter Solstice Festival (Dong Zhi) and the Lantern Festival (Yuan Xiao). There are two kinds of tang yuan: smaller balls without filling and lager ones with filling. At home, my mom would either make it herself or buy them freshly made from the farmers market. After moving to New York alone, I would buy the frozen packages in Asian markets. Of course it wasn't ideal, but it was good enough to fulfill my craving and my homesickness during the holidays, until one day, I saw my roommate making some homemade tang yuan, and it made me very curious. She was always a good homemaker and she loved making everything herself. I, on the other hand, wasn't such a good cook at the time, and thought that it would be good to learn how to make them from her.

Sugar-Free Sweet Red Bean Paste 無糖紅豆餡

Red beans (the name is directly translated from the Chinese name - Hong Do 紅豆) are also called adzuki beans. In Asia, we use a lot of red beans in desserts, and traditionally, red bean paste is made with red beans, water, and sugar. Red beans are a very good source of protein, fiber, and potassium, and are low in calories, but when you add the sugar, it starts to become less healthy. I thought it would be great to make a healthier version of it, so I don't need to feel guilty eating it. You can use it for your bread, toast, pancakes, tang yuan, mochi, or other desserts. It's a great recipe and a good thing for you to have in your freezer!


Nature's Path Organic Foods Giveaway

I don't usually hold giveaways, but I have to say that this one is too big and too good to miss out on! I'm sure those of you who live in the U.S. or Canada are probably already familiar with Nature's Path Organic Foods, but in case you aren't, I'll share with you very quickly my experiences with their products. Ever since I lived in NY several years ago, I was already a big fan of Nature's Path cereals. I always choose my food very carefully. Besides being certified organic, non-GMO project verified, and kosher, they also use whole grains, and they offer so many varieties and flavours, so I can always switch things up without getting tired of the flavour.


Everything Salad with Avocado, Mint, Capers, and Creamy Mustard-Yogurt Dressing

I think we can all agree that making simple salads usually takes no time, but what about a hearty salad like this one? Yes, I know what you're thinking, but don't be fooled by the appearance; you can actually make this super healthy salad in about fifteen minutes, and that includes a very creamy and yummy dressing that's not made with mayonnaise! All you need is a food processor, and the dressing can also be made in advance. It's colourful, delicious, and packed with vitamins and anti-oxidants from all the veggies! Since it's quite satisfying, it can be served by itself with a piece of bread or with a little bit of protein, like tofu, egg or fish, and you've got yourself a perfectly nutritious meal right there!


Vegan Cranberry Chocolate Truffles 蔓越莓松露巧克力


When it comes to Valentine's Day desserts, fruits like strawberries or raspberries are widely used, but I've always thought that cranberries are such an under-appreciated fruit. They're often used for Christmas and Thanksgiving, but not much else. The truth is, they're a very powerful fruit. The dried cranberries used here contain good amounts of fiber and heart-healthy unsaturated fats, they're also high in vitamin C and have a lot of anti-oxidants, and so can be quite beneficial for your health. Recently, I visited Nutra-Fruit - a local store that specializes in cranberry products. I was really inspired by their product, so I decided to create this recipe for this year's Valentine's Day. (See my Valentine's Day Cranberry Heart Swirl Cheesecake, Homemade Cranberry-Vanilla Butter, Whole Wheat Cranberry Oat Scones)


Crispy Curry Tofu with Mini Peppers in Sweet Onion Sauce 甜椒脆皮豆腐與洋蔥醬

Have you ever tried pairing a salad dressing with a hot dish, instead of with salad? This month, I had the pleasure of teaming up with Litehouse Foods and Food Bloggers of Canada, to create this beautiful and flavourful dish with Litehouse's Sweet Onion dressing (from their new Green Garden line). Since this month is the Chinese New Year, I combined some elements from the East in this dish. This recipe shows you how to make the tofu crispy without having to deep fry it or dredge it in flour. Not only does the dish have different textures, but also layers of interesting flavours as well! And the best thing is that it's all made with plant-based ingredients, so it's vegan and even gluten-free! You can serve it with rice or as an hors d'œuvre. Find out more about the delicious dressing and my recipe at Food Bloggers of Canada. I include plenty of photos to show you how to make it, too!

Cherry Tomato and Garlic Confit with Thyme 油封蒜味小蕃茄與百里香

This is something that I've repeatedly been making for at least several years now. It takes a little bit of time to cook, but the prepping time is as short as 2 minutes! It allows you to walk away to do your stuff or make other dishes while this cooks, and it doesn't require any special skills as well! You can easily prepare this with your kids. Sounds too good to be true? Actually there's even more! What I like about it is that you can so easily pair it with many different things - from a simple salad, sandwich, to chicken, and beans, etc. (see more ideas in recipe below). You can double or triple the quantity, because once it's made, you can store it in the fridge for a week. It's easy to reheat and turn into a quick delicious weeknight meal or to complete other dishes. Therefore, it's a perfect addition to have in your fridge!


Kumquat Honey 金桔蜂蜜

This is my first post in two months. Yes, it's been ages, and I'm sorry for not being in-site for a while. Life has been an adventure for me since last November. First, I was invited to work in the kitchen of Ma Station Café, and right after a busy reopening of the café, I received news that I had to go back to Taiwan to help with some family business. It was an overwhelming period for me, and right after I arrived in Taiwan, I got the flu. Thanks to my mom, who gave me the greatest care, I was able to recover in a week, but with the traveling, stress, and new job, everything has taken a toll on my health. I got very sick again right after my return to Quebec and on top of that, I had to fight my jet-lag for almost two weeks!