How to eat Spain in 14 days! Second stop…A Coruña

There are so many things I hate about A Coruña; the cold weather, the humidity, the old fishing town feeling, the smells. Some of my worst memories were made there. But, somehow the Galician food seems to make up for all the bad memories, bad smells and bad feelings.

A Coruña has been a hub of the Galician fishing industry for centuries. Its cuisine centers around seafood, which is great both at the cheap and at the more formal marisquerias (seafood restaurants.) Polbo á feira (octopus served with olive oil, Spanish paprika and coarse sea salt) it’s the big “star”. You can find it pretty much anywhere in Galicia, but we had our share at the Pulpeira Maria Pita in A Coruña.

Pulperia Maria Pita

Although the octopus gets most of the credit, there’s so much more in the Galician menu. Delicious Caldo Gallego (Potatoes boil in broth together with chunky white beans, radish greens, pork belly, and usually chorizo, ribs, and other cuts of pork), empanada Gallega, Tarta de Santiago, Galician cheese, and the unbelievable bread (Pan de Cea) that you’ll need to sop up the last drops of just about any dish you eat in Galicia!

Galician Blond Beef

And there is Galician beef. Apparently, Galician Blonds (retired dairy cows, which can be as old as 14 years) have become as “famous” as the traditional Galician pulpo these days. Top chefs in Spain and England are willing to pay a small fortune for the beef which is on the menu of some of the best restaurants in A Coruña. These elderly cows’ milk is used to create the region’s speciality Tetilla cheese. Their meat is marbled naturally with fat created over the years, giving a deeper flavor than other beef.

Unfortunately, I learned all of that too late and we didn’t have a chance to try these old fat cows that, just like wine, get better with time. But we ate Galician beef at this weird (for lack of better word) place called A’gramalleira. Now, bare with me as I try to describe this cookware. As you can partially see in the picture below, the Gramalleira is a metal cone with spears. Meat cubes are placed in each spear. The Gramalleira, which looks more like a torture instrument rather than cookware, is than placed in a hook and it hangs over a fire pit. The meat cooks. The cone is transferred to a platter and yet hangs on another hook. Underneath the cone sits a bowl of steamed rice which sucks all the meat drippings. But wait! Once they bring the plater with the hanging meat+rice+3 different dipping sauces to your table, the server pours some type of liquor over the hanging meat and lights it up on fire. The meat hangs there all caramelized, the smoke intoxicates your senses, and the rice is swimming in juice.

A Gramalleira

Despite my “no love” for A Coruña, I have to admit that our time there was filled with great food and some very special memories. I’m so thankful my husband and kids were there with me this time. It made every little bite tastier and some of the bad memories less bitter.

Also, while in A Coruña…

Try Percebes (Goose barnacles)

Try Percebes (Goose barnacles)

Go Pokemon Go with the locals

Go Pokemon Go with the locals

Fry some local eggs

Fry some local eggs

Drink this or ANY Albariño

Drink this or ANY Albariño


How to eat Spain in 14 days. First stop…Madrid!

We had 14 days divided in 3 cities in Spain; Madrid, A Coruña and Barcelona. Parks, castles, churches, cathedrals, more castles, some museums, lots of plazas (squares), like a thousand of monuments,  a couple of beaches, family visit, and a whole lotta of food in between.

Although fascinating and honestly mind blowing, I won’t bore you with my mediocre writing of all of the historical sites and incredible experiences we had in Spain as a family. Rather, I’m going to try to taste Spain again through these pictures and hopefully make your mouth salivate as much as my did…does! It is no Elizabeth Gilbert’s “Eat, Pray, Love”  but almost more rewarding!

When in Madrid…

A CoruñaComing up next (after laundry, soccer practice, soccer games, volunteering, cooking, more cooking, endless dishes and hopefully a shower…maybe two!)

Until then Cheers…Salud!



5 days out in LA

The kids went to camp away for 5 days and this is how we coped.

Pizzeria Mozza — Best pizza crust I’ve tried in LA but the Butterscotch Budino with caramel and sea salt (pictured bellow) was the highlight of our meal. And I don’t even like butterscotch! I’d do it all over again and again and again! Grazie Chef Batali and friends!

IMG_3109 IMG_3110

Mud Hen Tavern –Ahhh…The Kaya toast, a Singaporean style dish made with toasted bread slathered in coconut jam, topped with a soft fried egg and soy sauce. Sweet, salty and weird…but so good. The Green Deviled Egg with homemade green Sriracha was the best $3 we spent all week.


Mud Hen Tavern

The Happy Hour at East Borough in Culver City was surprising good! Probably not the best choice for authentic Vietnamese food but we wouldn’t know any better. The spicy fish sauce chicken wings was our favorite dish, but the Bahn Mi and chicken grapefruit lettuce wraps were excellent too!

East Borough IMG_3122

Bestia– Hype? Yes, no doubt. Regardless, we had a great experience. Our cocktails were perfection. The Veal Tartare Crostini and Roasted Bone Marrow did not blew me away but I’ll come back just to taste the Cavatelli alla Norcina (Ricotta dumplings, housemade pork sausage, black truffle) one more time.

Bestia IMG_3129 IMG_3130 IMG_3148

Perch LA— Traditional cocktails, a view and live music. I feel in love with Perch.

Perch LA IMG_3145

The Hungry Cat Santa Monica– Parking is tough and valet service was not available at the time we got there. I asked the hostess where to find parking around there and she innocently said “I don’t know. My mom drops me off.” What can I say? It was 5pm on a Tuesday. I had high expectations for this place but the food was ‘just’ ok and the cocktails were ‘just’ not good. Average oysters, fishless ceviche, a strange tasting Michelada and we move on to our next eatery. Glad we didn’t valet!

The Hungry Cat SAMO IMG_3165

Flores + Sons–Sure there’s Kale salad in the menu but we have no shame. We ordered the potato rolls with maple butter and guilt free crudo with crab and avocado. Both excellent!

IMG_3161Fores and Sons

Mccormick and Schmicks— It was late, we were hungry and childless for one more night so we headed out to M&S late happy hour. It has been 18 years since my first time here and it still remains one of my favorites.

M&S IMG_3189 IMG_3190

I’m thankful for the tasty memories but I’m happy to have my little Frys back.

Now…Where do I sign-up for spinning classes?

Cooking with kids and easy Thai Curry recipe

Cooking with Kids

Here is the raw truth. I cook but I don’t cook well with others. Especially when they are my own children. So I’ve decided to make a great effort to face my cooking selfishness and share this skill with my kids. I do it once in a while and require a lot some wine prior to the cooking commences.

Cooking is a life skill on the verge of extinction. I want my kids to know how to cook—not to impress but just to survive…not in the wild…just in the real world. Maybe I’m just too optimistic, but if they can throw some fresh ingredients together without losing any fingers and getting burnt I’ll be happy. Apart from that, there’s always cereal and milk.

I poured a glass of wine and got cooking with my 12-year-old son. He loves Thai food. So do I. Since my 9-year-old daughter (the picky eater who hates Thai food and seafood) was out on a sleepover we decided to make Thai Shrimp/Squid Curry. It may sound fancy, but it’s easy and quick. We finished the dish before I could finish my second glass of wine. Check it out!

Thai Shrimp Curry with kids

This recipe was for two so it only required one pound of shrimp and squid combined. My son chopped the onion and sliced the bell pepper with my supervision. I sipped my wine when he was done. Big sips. He also washed the shrimp+squid and gathered the ingredients. I chopped the lemongrass, a totally optional ingredient.

The real challenge was watching him try to open the can of coconut milk. O.M.G. More wine, please. How many of you out there have taught a kid to open a can? Specifically a boy? It wasn’t going well for us so I gave up. I opened the can myself. The “how to use a can opener” lesson would have to wait.

We started by sautéing the onions, bell peppers and lemongrass in hot coconut oil for about 3 minutes. Next, we added the shrimp+squid which let out some liquid. We used the liquid as a base to dissolve the curry paste and peanut butter. Then we added coconut milk, salt, and some sugar. We tasted. Not sweet enough. More sugar, a dash of pepper flakes and some basil leaves.

Thai Shrimp Curry

We let it simmer for about 5 minutes and served immediately over jasmine rice. My son plated and garnished it and this is what we ended up with:

Thais Shrimp Curry

No finger casualties. Only happy and spicy memories (despite the can opening moment.) Cooking with kids can be fun but here is the deal: keep it simple, cook something they like to eat, and let them do most of the work (including the cleaning!)

Cooking with kids Thai Curry
Cuisine: Easy Thai
This recipe works with any protein (beef, chicken, seafood and even tofu) It's easy enough to do it with kids. Make the rice before you start the curry.
  • 1 pound shrimp, seafood, chicken, beef or tofu
  • 2 tablespoons refined coconut oil (can be replaced for vegetable or canola oil)
  • 2 tablespoons red Thai curry paste
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher or sea salt
  • 1 stick of lemongrass chopped (optional)
  • ½ red/purple onion, peeled and diced
  • ½ red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoons peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon red chili flakes (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons basil leaves, chopped
  • cilantro, chopped or whole to garnish
  • 1 lime cut in quarters
  1. Rinse shrimp or seafood getting it ready to cook (if you using beef/chicken/tofu just cut it in 1 inch cubes.)
  2. Heat the coconut oil on a skillet over medium high heat. Add the onion, peppers, lemongrass and cook until softened.
  3. Add the shrimp or whatever protein of your choice. Cook it until ready (for seafood no longer then 4 minutes.)
  4. Add curry paste, peanut butter and a little bit of the coconut milk mixing it until all is dissolved and combined.
  5. Add the remaining coconut milk, basil, ginger, salt, sugar and pepper flakes.
  6. Bring to a boil then reduce to simmer.
  7. Serve over rice or noodles. Garnish with more cilantro and basil, and a splash of lime juice.



New York City Spring 2016

Our New York City family trip this spring break was by far one of the best experiences we had as individuals and as a family. Sure, the pizza was great and the skyline incredible but what really got me about New York City was the people.

New Yorkers are not rude. They may be abrasive but they are also helpful and kind. They are constantly moving, molding and holding on a little tighter and a little closer. No matter how crowded the streets, the subway or the coffee shops are…in New York you find a spot. You get where you want to go.

We got to see all the main ‘touristy’ attractions we planned to visit. The Statue of Liberty, 9/11 Memorial and Museum and Central Park were the highlight of our trip. We took pictures. We got souvenirs. We made memories. But it was the chat with the gentleman at Central Park; the unsolicited help that a total stranger gave us at a subway station—despite my defensive attitude–; the smile on the kids faces when they tossed a dollar to the acapella singers on the subway car; and randomly seeing friends from back home at Times Square busy subway station that really showed us what New York City seems to be all about.

Some of our NYC favorites:

NYC Pizza

Don Antonio by Starita


Lombardi’s Pizza


Dough @citykitchen


Bill’s Bar & Burgers Irish Coffee Shake with Jameson Irish Whiskey

Hashtag whole360Fry

Dealiciouscooking instagram

It took 129 posts and a lot of commitment to clean up my cooking-and eating- style a little bit. I love all things food but 365 days ago I decided to make a more conscious but still delicious shift. Less rice more quinoa, whole over processed, lots of clean eating in many colorful ways and a hashtag to hold me accountable.

I’ve learned a few things from this #whole360fry ‘thing’. Clean and healthy options are way easier to choose than what I expected and saying NO to dirty options is awfully hard. So I ate eat a lot of clean and a bit of bad because life is short and curly fries make me happy.

This may sound cliché, but clean foods are easier to choose when my mind is also clean of all that junk that surrounds my everyday life. I eat my best when I feel my best. So if you happen to look at my hashtag journey you will see not only lots of raw fish and quinoa but also wine and the beach…Ahhh the many miles I have since walked, ran and even dragged myself at times.

I no longer hate running, but I still don’t love it. What I really like is the way it makes me feel afterwards and the fact that it doesn’t leave me famished. Running works when everything else failed didn’t!

Looking back at my #whole360Fry posts some of my favorite clean dishes where the easies to make; quinoa tabouleh, kale salad with tahini Sriracha dressing, roasted curry cauliflower and watermelon salad with feta and basil. My kids love kale chips and they’re learning to enjoy sweet potatoes. After all, this #whole360Fry ‘thing’ became a Fry family ‘thing’…and we all win!

Eating whole and clean doesn’t have to be hard. It’s a change that can actually be fun if you allow yourself to try new things. Documenting it here and on Instagram has helped me to continue to make healthy choices and to have fun with it.


The Fry Kitchen is OPEN!

Nearly three months after demo, our kitchen is done and we’ve started to cook again, even though the work isn’t completely finished, and, as I write this, we still have unpacked boxes waiting for me in the garage.

I’m sure you heard that “The kitchen is the heart of the home.” Well, as much as our old kitchen was ugly, non functional, and outdated it was still the heart of our home.  And with that heart scattered all over the garage, I felt lost.

It’s definitely gratifying to have this brand new kitchen now! The cook in me, caged for what felt like a decade, is already use to the new setting. I love almost everything about the new kitchen but being able to cook on a GAS range is by far the best thing EVER!

So now that the heart of our home is once again beating, there are some things I don’t want to forget:

Our timeline doesn’t mean sh*t. We are at the mercy of ‘others’ time and they live on a different planet than us foolish non general contractor mortals.

It’s going to get worse…way worse before it gets better, so don’t mind the dust, the noise and the smells.

There will be music playing constantly so learn to love – or at least tolerate – Hispanic tunes.

Trying moments are inevitable.  For those there is always a nice craft beer, a favorite bottle of wine or straight up ice cream.

In the final stretch, things are beyond stressful, and I swear to G-d I will NEVER EVER do this again. Agh the painful home stretch just like childbirth and then finally… you have this beautiful creation!

Fry Kitchen Remodel








Fry Kitchen Remodel

Can I cook yet?

We’ve finally pulled the trigger on our kitchen remodel! After so many years of dreaming, months of planning and hours of pinning ideas – the remodel is ON!


Tile countertop, painted cabinets with misaligned doors, exposed hinges, ancient ceramic cook top, no hood, no counter space, jammed drawers, tiny sink, and the worst of it all…disgusting and fugly linoleum floors. This old shoebox kitchen had it all!

FryKitchenRemodel IMG_9103

Demolition was the easiest and most rewarding part. When you love cooking and do it everyday in a kitchen you have very little love for, seeing it being hammered down piece by piece is orgasmic highly enjoyable!


This kitchen was the worst part of the Fry shack and even with all the family memories we’ve made in it I was so satisfied to see it just like this…totally naked!



I’m thankful for my awesome grill and great SoCal weather which it was perfect for the first 3 weeks of the remodel. We barbecued a lot and ate in the patio. Now that the weather has cooled down, the crockpot and toaster oven have been lifesavers!

We were hoping for our kitchen to be at least useable by Thanksgiving but it looks like we’ll have to barbecue the Turkey. Keeping our fingers crossed to be able to bake cookies for Santa in our new kitchen.

Put an apron on!

I love to cook but hate to clean up. I know a lot of people identify with this statement. And I’m not only talking about the amount of clean-up I do just to prepare the meal. I’m referring to all the cleaning involved with cooking, including the clean-up waiting for me as soon as everyone has left their seats and disappeared from sight.

Cooking is messy, and splashy, sticky, and gross at times. It takes a fair amount of space, tools, planning, patience and cleaning. But then there is the flip side. Chaos precedes creation. Somehow in all the mess making I create something good. Something tasty enough to make my kids go hmmmm and that makes up for all the clean-up I did or still have to do.

Yesterday’s Chaos

The creation

Hot weather calls for cold noodles

Oriental Cold Noodles for

It’s searing hot and it has been that way for a while. The kids are perpetually cranky, the dog doesn’t know what to do with himself and even my tropical self can take this weather anymore.

Cold noodles are just perfect for lunch or dinner when the last thing you want to do is stand over a hot stove. They’re easy to cook, delicious eaten straight out of the fridge and the perfect leftover to pack in the kid’s lunchboxes.

For these recipe I used the veggies I had available (spinach, celery, tomatoes and green onions) but anything goes. The noodles were regular Barilla angel hair but it can be done with any type of noodles oriental or not.

Start by chopping the veggies and mixing it in a large bowl.

Cold Oriental Noodles for

Prepare the dressing while the noodles are cooking.

Cold Oriental Noodles for

Rinse the cooked noodles with water until cold. Mix noodles, veggies and dressing. Refrigerate for at least one hour allowing the noodles suck in all the flavors. Eat it straight out of the fridge. Repeat!

Cold Oriental Noodles
Cuisine: Fake Asian
  • For the noodles:
  • 4 cups chopped fresh raw vegetables: spinach, celery,snow peas, bell peppers, scallions
  • 16 ounces Chinese egg noodles or long pasta like linguine or angel hair
  • For the dressing:
  • 1 small garlic clove (minced or crushed)
  • 2 tablespoons dark sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons agave syrup (or 1 tbsp sugar)
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of water
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • Sriracha or Tabasco sauce to taste (optional)
  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and salt it. Prepare the vegetables: wash, trim, peel as necessary and cut into sizes and shapes of your choice. Mix in a large bowl.
  2. Cook the noodles in the boiling water until tender but not mushy. When they’re done, drain and rinse with cold water. Reserve.
  3. Whisk together the dressing ingredients.
  4. Toss the cold noodles and veggies; top with sauce and stir to coat.
  5. Refrigerate for one hour before serving.
This dressing goes wonderfully with chopped salads too!