Every summer growing up, we made a trip down to Northern California to visit my grandparents. Along with shopping trips and late-night movies, I always looked forward to the bounty of farm-fresh produce. I was a very picky eater as a kid, but I could get down with some corn on the cob, bing cherries, avocados and artichokes—all of which could be had in abundance at Grandma’s house.
I’ve never been a big red wine drinker, instead preferring to sip on a crisp rosé or fruity riesling. But on a recent Saturday afternoon I was in want of a drink, and an open bottle of Petit Syrah sat on my kitchen counter. I mixed it with a little bit of Sprite, some lime juice and some bitters and had myself a nice little red wine spritzer. At this point I was surprised (and a little embarrassed) by how much I liked this concoction, so I went on a quick Google search to investigate the world of summery red wine drinks.
Otherwise known as The World’s Best Kale Salad. Now, I know what you may be thinking: raw kale is completely gross and people who claim to love it are just faking it. I kind of thought the same thing before I started frequenting Darwin Cafe in San Francisco. Since I worked just down the street from this sweet little lunch spot, I sampled pretty much everything on the menu (you may remember when I waxed poetic about this scrumptious turkey sandwich recipe) but the thing that kept me—and thousands of others—queueing up time and time again was the kale salad.
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Spring is my favorite season. The plants come back to life, the birds start building nests and the days get longer and longer. And, as the weather starts to warm, I’m able to spend more and more time outside. Since moving to Seattle, I’ve been waiting for the advent of spring to start exploring the beautiful Pacific Northwest by hiking and road-tripping and picnicking my way through town and beyond. And friends, that time is now!
My first time in Mexico, I had a margarita epiphany. Behind every bar and atop every oilcloth-covered table were bowls of bright green, gumball-sized limes that seemed so delicate compared to our big ol’ American limes. I soon learned that these miniature, slightly sweeter iterations were key limes—as opposed to the Persian limes that are ubiquitous here—and they were utterly delicious. Of course I had indulged in a key lime pie or two in my day, but it wasn’t until I returned from that vacation that I started incorporating key limes into my go-to recipes.