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Luna Grill


Luna Grill

Your day just got Feta! Had Luna Grill's Beyond Burger. Yup you guess right. A beefless meat patty that is 100% pant based. How cool is that? Or scary. Whatever floats your boat. I'm a little with both. Cool that we've come a long way for veggie patties and scary to know people are actually trying to mock the flavor and texture of beef. Even the looks of a medium/medium rare exists in these Beyond Meat patties.

The verdict? The texture was pretty spot on. It didn't have the fat you would imagine a fatty chuck would have. It didn't have the same fat crust you would normally get. However, did I miss a burger while eating this? No. It actually satisfied my craving for a burger so it did it's job. This is a great alternative if you want to cut out meat, but still enjoy a burger that has a better substance than one made with beans. 

They also sell this in Ralphs. I'm excited to eat this again to be honest.




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With the 8 hour slow roasted pork I had left over (click here for recipe) I had enough to make 8 BBQ pork sliders. I just can't even begin with what you can make with leftover slow roasted pork. Even though my kitchen was a literal mess, the finished product was definitely worth the clean up.

I went to Ralphs grocery store after work today since it was just up the street to pick up the ingredients I needed to make this into another dish. I purchased a bag of original Kings Hawaiin rolls and a bag of "Dole Sunflower Chopped Salad" - tastes like sweet coleslaw.

In the bag of salad, it comes with a pack of bacon and sunflower seeds. I mixed the chopped salad with the sweet onion dressing that came with it, and set the sunflower seeds to the side (not used in this recipe). With the pack of bacon, I heated a hot pan to crispy the bacon up a bit. I then threw in the leftover pork butt, and watched it dance in the pan a little bit. It gets a little mesmerizing watching the cold fat slow render and melt around like lava. Now, the spices.

I added 1 teaspoon of Ancho chili powder, 1 teaspoon of cayenne, and 1 teaspoon of smoked paprika. There is no need to add any more salt since the pork is already salted. When the pork is heated through and starts charring up, add in your favorite barbecuesauce. Make sure you don't over sauce your pork.

yes. I have a pork chalk board. I love pork, what can I say.

I toasted the Hawaiin rolls on the inside until it gets nice and crusty. Now, start layering. Beware if you are very hungry like me. You will want to pile as much of everything as you can. The crispy onions strings you see were leftovers from The Counter Burger that I reheated in my Breville convectional oven.

I'm not a huge sandwich gal. But if I were to order a sandwich, I would want it to have a lot of meat. No turkey. No roast beef. I want it hot and heavy. Give me a steak sandwich or non type of deal. I die a little when people want to get sandwiches for lunch. But, most sandwiches I do have are the ones I make. Just because I can put whatever the F I want and no one can say otherwise. Besides John. John will give me a hard time later when he sees this. 4 humungo sliders that I devoured. Was full after the 3rd but I kept going.

There you go with 3 pounds of pork but. That's 4.5 plates of carnitas and rice, and 8 bbq sliders. Not bad at all. Though I am a bit depressed seeing all these Victorias Secret models in their "Train like an Angel" mode. And here I am. Making pulled pork, laying on the couch watching the Matrix. What is this life? What is this life.

But at the end of the day. I cannot give this up. I cannot go on any diets, because I would die early from depression. There are things I need need to have: white rice, hot cheetos, french fries, burgers, steak, tacos. Beverages is all the above minus diet sodas.

Now. Going to not do anything but brush my teeth and head to bed. And dream about BBQ pulled pork. I deserved it. I've been winning on this low and slow game.

Sincerely your pork lover,


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low and slow 8 hour pork butt


low and slow 8 hour pork butt

After getting a Crockpot recently, I've been on this crazy low and slow cooking mood. I made a pot roast the other day and then this pork butt yesterday. I am in love with how simple this was. I kept the flavors extremely minimal so I can alter the pork according to the types of dishes I want to use it for.


  • 3 pounds of pork butt
  • 1 white onion
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 green pepper
  • Salt and Garlic powder to season pork (salt according to your preference)
  • 6 large cloves of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of white pepper
  • 1/4 cup of chicken stock


I got one pork butt around 3 pounds. I trimmed off the fat from the pork. This cut of pork itself has a lot of fat running through it, so don't be afraid of cutting it down or you will end up with a big pot of fat. I cut up the meat in a large chunks, seasoned it with salt and garlic powder, and then seared it in a screaming hot pan with Thrive Algae oil. The smoke point on this oil is fantastic giving these buddies a nice golden hue.

As the pork was tanning, I sliced up 1 green pepper, 1 red pepper, and 1 white onion. I also peeled 6 large cloves of garlic, smashed. All the ingredients were thrown straight into my Crockpot with 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of white pepper. Layer the pork on top, and Isplashed the top with a little chicken stock. Lid it, and then set it on low for 8 hours.

MMmmm nothing like pork cooked low and slow, bubbling in it's own fat drippings. I left the pieces of pork chunky, and didn't shred it until I dropped a few in a hot pan. I let the pork crisp on the edges. What you can always do is add spices as it's searing in the pan. Sometimes I like to add cumin, and sometimes I add a little cayenne and paprika. Again, it really depends on the types of flavors you are going after. But this came out so good like this I just left it alone.

I cooked 3 cups of Jasmine rice because that's what I had. I like to cook extra rice to have enough for work. I chopped up 3/4 cups of cilantro, and squeezed 1 whole juicy lime (you might need 2). Adding 2 tablespoons of butter is optional, but I drizzled a little bit of the pork fat instead.

I quickly mashed up an avocado with a squeeze of lime and a pinch of salt as a side. Lastly, I popped open a can of Jalapenos in Escabeche. This was SO GOOD I even washed the dishes after.

With the left over meats, we will have BBQ pork sliders with coleslaw!

Now, go and get a Crockpot and pork butts.




Mui Choy Kou Yoke

If I was a comfort food, how will I look like? I've already talked about how rice is a huge necessity in my life, and without it, I would die. But, if I were to look like some kind of Chinese food, it will be this dish right here.

Muy Choi is some kind of preserved mustard greens which needs to be soaked and re-hydrated before you cook them. My mom should be teaching me the recipe soon, so stay put. But, the work that goes into this is pretty messy. Basically, you are deep frying the skin of the pork belly until it gets super bubbly and golden before you stew it for a few hours until its fork tender. That's how mom makes it. So that's the way. If you zoomed in, you can see the beautiful cracked golden skin from the frying, though it's not crunchy anymore. The sauce is just components of chicken stock, a few soy sauces, some brown sugar and tons of garlic. My mom likes to throw in orange peel, but I like to leave it out.

I had this for dinner last night with a little sriracha drizzled over. I ate this with a giant spoon, baggy sweat clothes while watching the Food Network. How does that not sound amazing? It's pretty cold tonight. And I can barely feel my nose and toes. If this was my last meal, I have no regrets. Why? Because this was my moms cooking. One of those "Come by, I made your favorite" type of phone calls.

So if I really did die (someone please knock on wood), just know, I died in a happy place because I've had one of my most cherished, favorite if not THE one, Chinese dish of all time.

Thank you mother even though you are crazy 95% of the time.



Thrive House - Algae Oil


Thrive House - Algae Oil

I've got to say, I was really excited when I received an invite to taste Algae Oil by Thrive. I know what it is... but in oil? I've never heard of such thing. Thrive is the first and currently the only culinary Algae Oil on the market. With that being said, their mission is straight to the point:

Our mission is to advance nutrition through algae oil to help people live better lives
— Thrive Culinary Algae Oil

Being at this event, we learned that the average person gets only half the daily monounsaturated fat -Also known as MUFA-. What is Monounsaturated fat? I hope it's pretty obvious by now that I am not a dietitian. All I can tell you, is that Monounsaturated fat is the good fat that we find in an avocado. The GOOD fat we are talking about here. Guess what one tablespoon of this oil gives? It's equivalent to one avocado. One. I don't know about you or if you've noticed, but avocados are expensive. And I'm sorry, I can't eat an avocado a day even though I love it. But Algae Oil? I can use that in absolutely everything. And being at this dinner proved that.

Upon entry, we were greeted with friendly smiles, and Oh My God look at that view

Gorgeous right? Tucked away in Hollywood Hills, this was definitely a million dollar view. But honestly, we were greeted with wine. A definite yes! And here I thought, I was going to eat vegetables and extremely raw green food.

No. I hear something in the background. Sizzling. The smell? Beef fat. What is it? Oh you just wait.

Roasted Grape and Chevre Crostini

I was just talking with my coworkers today, about how I cannot do Goat Cheese. Just something about the earthy, grassy, musky taste of it. And I knew, this was goat cheese. But like all foods, I try to keep trying foods to appreciate why everyone likes it. Verdict? I loved the combination. The goat cheese was very mild which complimented beautifully with the sweet roasted grapes. The grapes are roasted in balsamic, rosemary oil roasted and infused with Thrive algae oil. I am definitely going to make this at my next cocktail party that I throw. I knew I should've ate more. I just should've.

Chicken & Haloumi Skewers


Forgive me for the camera shake. It was such a challenge to keep the chicken on the stick without it twirling around. These were fantastic. So juicy, tender, flavorful. Served with a roasted red pepper salsa with some Thrive oil. ideas? Chimichurri madness. I am so excited to make this dish on my own with the Algae Oil.


Mini Tacos


Not going to lie, I had 2. These are minis I know, but when you have an extensive course ahead of you, you would want to pace yourself. Simple, clean, crunchy and decadent. By the way, I was not even think that I was consuming Algae Oil. So far, the flavors are very light and balanced.



Dinner time

Attention! take your seats. At the table, we talked about ourselves, what our blog entails, and most importantly, what Thrive is all about. I can really see the passion in their eyes when speaking about the difference they want to make in every household, every beating heart.

Without further ado, it's time to eat.

First Course

Roasted Beet Salad - Marinated Goat Cheese, Toasted Walnuts, Champagne Vinaigrette, Roasted Beets marinated and Blended with Thrive Algae Oil.

Seared Kampachi & Ahi Sashimi - Togarashi, Citrus Segments, Lotus Root Chips, Jalapeno Ponzu, Shiso, Seared, with Thrive Algae Oil.

Beef Tataki Salad with Fall Greens - Mizuna, Daikon Radish Sprouts, Shiitake Mushrooms, Miso-Dijon vinaigrette dressed with Thrive Algae Oil.

Roasted Beet Salad

So yummy, and one of the best beat salad compilations I've had. Again, I'm not a big goat cheese fat, but the way they infused the oil into the cheese just made it more mild and smooth. It definitely compliments the beets an the toasty walnuts. This might just change my perspective on goat cheese because of the oil.

Beef Tataki

Remember earlier when I said I smelled sizzling beef fat? This was it. So on this note, Thrive's Algae Oil has a high smoke point at 485 compared to Peanut Oil at 440, to Canola at 400, to olive at 375, and to corn at 320. Is that amazing or do we need to shut the door? I am so interested to see how this will sear with my Ribeyes. This dish was extraordinary. Exceptional. The beef was beyond tender. And this was one of the best Tataki takes I've had. I loved the vinaigrette that they created, with the subtle touch of the oil to give it a slight slick. Amazing.

Seared Kampachi & Ahi Sashimi

This was love x's infinity. Throughout the course, everything was extremely balanced. I told the Brand Manager Joshua, that I am eating food. Like, literally. Everything that I was tasting, tasted like how it should be. Nothing was masked in any flavor, but the ingredients spoke true to itself. The serrano pepper that made my ears hot in the best possible way, drizzled with ponzu, with the shiso... it almost felt like I was having a Kaiseki.

Second Course

Tea Smoked Salmon with Crispy Skin - Soba Noodle Salad, Baby Bok Choy, Sweet Peppers, Edamame, Yuzu Vinaigrette, Wild Salmon seared and dressed with Thrive Algae Oil.

Crispy Chicken - Blistered Green Beans, Tamari Ginger Dressing, Sesame Seeds fried, baked and dressed with Thrive Oil.

Crispy Chicken

They delivered on crispy. This dish reminded me of something my mom or dad would make as I was growing up. The flavors of the green beans is not something you will find typically in a restaurant. I honestly, haven't flavors like these beans since childhood. It definitely made me reminisce to the foods I grew up eating.

Tea Smoked Salmon

This was one of my favorite dishes. I loved how the tea smoke gave the salmon this beautiful sweet seaweed flavor to the skin. There was slight peaks of Yuzu that brought the dish together, not too much, just perfect. The bok choys were also a nice texture element to this dish. I am such a happy girl.


Flourless Chocolate Cake - Black Sesame Brittle, Mandarin, Green Tea whipped Cream. Cake is baked with Thrive Algae Oil.

This cake was so moist. It felt like a Molten lava cake. The center was slightly wet with crusty edges. Not trying to freak anyone out, but this opened up my palette and I was hungry again. I don't even know how this is possible... to taste so freaking good, but it did. And I hate myself for loving everything so much.

As we are finishing up the rest of the wine, some guests were headed out as Ubers were being called. Me? I just wanted to stay in this house. They have enough oil to last me a while.

The end results? I am definitely going to start using Algae Oil. I am extremely pleased and impressed by this product, and how pure the flavors were to the dishes that were created. Not only that, it's better for the planet. At Thrive, they believe in nourishing people today and for generations to come with the earth's resources in mind. Their target for Thrive Algae Oil will be one of the most sustainably produced cooking oils, with more Thrive Algae Oil per acre of land, and a low carbon and water footprint, than nearly all other cooking oils.

Currently, you can only find Thrive Algae Oil at a Los Angeles Gelsons Market. But don't worry, you can always order their oil at their website:

I can't wait to share some culinary adventures with this product. It really reflects a lot of purpose with my blog, Food Within Reach. You don't always have to eat out to have a fantastic meal. Thrive proved that with their oils with their Gourmet, but yet simple meals.

Stay tuned for recipes you see above.

Go get your Thrive Algae Oil today!