Holy Guacamole!!!

This guacamole always disappears…sometimes before dinner is served. It’s perfect for fajita night with a couple of friends or double it up for a fiesta.


Holy Guacamole!!!


Serves 3-4.

3 avocadoes, peeled, pitted and cubed
1/2 onion, minced
1 jalapeño, diced
1/2 tomato, finely diced
1/4- 1/3 cup, finely chopped cilantro, plus a couple leaves for garnish
4 garlic cloves, pressed through a garlic press
2 teaspoons lime juice
1/2 teaspoon chili pepper flakes, more to taste
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
salt and pepper


1. Combine avocado, tomato, jalapeño, garlic and lime juice. Mash like crazy with a fork or OXO Good Grips Wire Potato Masher.

2. Stir in cilantro, chili pepper flakes, cayenne, salt and pepper. Adjust accordingly. I like a slow burn, so I always heat it up….not enough to make you sweat, but so you definitely know it’s there.

3. Serve with homemade tortilla chips….or store bought if you don’t have time to make your own.
4. Transfer to a fiesta inspired bowl and garnish with cilantro.


Baked Baby Bellas with Lemon Dill Dipping Sauce

Baked Baby Bellas (Criminis)

Baked Baby Bellas (Criminis) with Lemon Dill Dipping Sauce

Baby Bellas, also known as crimini mushrooms, lend themselves well to this savory appetizer adapted from the folks at Season with Spice. Steve and I made these with a Roasted Acorn Squash Rigatoni. A perfect fall dinner!


1 8 oz. package of Baby Bella mushrooms
1/2 cup Panko (you can find Sun Luck in most grocery stores in the Asian food section)
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon dried parsley
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
Fresh ground sea salt and pepper

Lemon Dill Dipping Sauce
1/3 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons mayo
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh dill, finely chopped
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Fresh ground sea salt and pepper to taste



1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. Wipe the mushrooms clean with a damp paper towel

3. In a small-ish bowl combine Panko, parmesan cheese, basil, parsley, garlic powder, cayenne, salt and pepper and mix well.

4. In a separate bowl beat the egg.

5. Dip the mushrooms in the egg mixture until fully coated then transfer to the Panko mixture and coat well again. Place mushroom on a Silpat(or Parchment) lined baking sheet. I swear by my Silpat and would definitely like another one or two!!!

6. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes until they are golden brown. Serve warm.

 Lemon Dill Dipping Sauce

1. While your mushrooms are cooking combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Peruvian Ceviche

My favorite restaurant here in Portland is Andina, a family owned Peruvian restaurant in the heart of the Pearl District. And they have their ceviche recipe dialed down. Here is my re-creation of this Latin American favorite based on the recipe I found on myrecipes.com.



1 ½ pounds firm white fish (mahimahi, ono, bass etc.), bay scallops, or prawns (if using fish or prawns chop into pieces approx.. the size of your thumbnail)

½ small-medium red onion, halved and sliced super thin (use your mandolin if you have one)

juice from 8-9 limes

½ cup cilantro finely chopped

1 habanero, seeded and minced; a jalapeno, seeded and minced, would also work well

½ teaspoon sea salt

1 sweet potato or yam (boiled and cut in to 1″ slices , peel if you like)

1-2 corn on the cob (grilled in the husk); once cooked remove husks and you can either break the cobs in half or slice the kernels off and serve in a bowl

1 head Butter or Boston lettuce

½ cup to ¾ cup Aji Amarillo Sauce

Serves 4.


1. Combine seafood, red onion, habanero, salt and lime juice in a medium size bowl. Stir well and let sit for 20 minutes covered in the refrigerator. Stir well after 10 minutes to make sure the seafood is thoroughly “cooked.”

2. Just before serving stir in the cilantro.

3. My favorite way of serving this dish is family style, with the ceviche in a medium sized bowl and the sweet potato, corn, butter lettuce on a platter, and the aji Amarillo sauce on the side in a small dish with a spoon that people can pass around and take what they want.

Aji Amarillo Sauce


2 T. Aji Amarillo paste (can be purchased at Dashen Latino Grocery on NE Glisan)

2 green onions (chopped)

Juice from 2 limes

1 T. ketchup

¼ c. sour cream

½ cup mayonnaise

salt and pepper (to taste)


1.  Combine all ingredients in food processor and blend until smooth. Sauce may be refrigerated before use and can be made in advance.