My Pico de Gallo

Up to now I always purchased Pico de Gallo for 2 reasons – 1. I didn’t much care what was in my food as long as it tasted good; and 2, I didn’t consume enough Mexican food to keep it around. Neither of those reasons is true now. This salsa fresco is good on anything Mexican and probably lots of other things too.







5 Roma Tomatoes, diced fine

1/2 cup Tamed jalapeño. diced fine

1/2 yellow onion. diced fine

1/2 bunch of cilantro, leaves and stems, chopped fine

1 tsp of Trader Joe’s Chili Lime spice

1 lime, zest and juice

1 Tbs key lime juice

Salt substitute and coarse ground pepper

Additional options – mangos, bell peppers, cucumber, or peaches



    1. Prep all ingredients.
    2. Combine ingredients in a non-reactive bowl.
    3. Transfer to a re-sealable container and refrigerate overnight.
    4. Taste and adjust with salt substitute and coarse ground pepper as needed.

Carne Piranha with Farofa

I had never heard of Pichada roasts until I started using Wild Fork. So I started searching for recipes and discovered a whole new world of Brazilian food.  Of course, I had to adjust to my tastes but it’s pretty close to traditional






2.5 lbs of Picanha

2 Tbs of Brazilian Sofrito

lemon pepper or freshly ground black pepper to taste

For Brazilian Sofrito:

1/4 onion

2 Tbs minced garlic

1 Tbs olive oil

2 Tbs key lime juice

1/4 tsp mustard powder

1/2 cup Cilantro chopped fine

For the Farofa:

2 strips of good smoked bacon

1 cup of toasted cassava flour (or regular flour but start with less than 3/4 cup-if needed add more)

2 Tbs unsalted butter substitute

1/2 onion sliced or diced

2 cloves of garlic, minced

2 Tbs of fresh cilantro chopped

1 tsp Trader Joe’s Chili Lime spice

4 whole eggs

salt substitute and pepper to taste


    1. Allow Picanha to come to room temperature before cutting into steaks
    2. Add sofrito ingredients to a blender and pulse till you get a chunky paste. In a small bowl, mix the sofrito, mustard, cilantro, key lime juice, and a drizzle of olive oil as needed. Set aside.
    3. Light grill on high.
    4. Cut the meat in the same direction as the fibers (with the grain from wide end to small end) into 4 steaks.
    5. Season the steaks with salt substitute and lemon pepper, then marinade the steaks in the sofrito mixture for at least 15 minutes Brazilians usually skewer the steaks for grilling but you don’t have to do that.
    6. Set up the grill for indirect cooking by turning off 2 burners or moving all your charcoal to the back. Add the steaks on the oiled grate farthest from the remaining burners or charcoal. Grill the steaks for 20-25 minutes, turning every 5-7 minutes on all sides until the internal temp indicates you have achieved the level of doneness that you prefer.
    7. Remove the steaks from the grill, and let them rest for 5 mins, While the steaks are resting make the Farofa.
    8. Add the bacon to a cold skillet, and heat up over medium heat. When the fat from the bacon begins to melt, add 1 Tbs of butter substitute. when the bacon begins to fry, add the second tbsp of butter substitute.
    9. Add the onions to the pan and sauté until the onions are transparent, about 2 minutes then add the garlic and cook till golden.
    10. Mix in the flour and let it toast stirring constantly.
    11. Add the eggs to the pan, and scramble them gently.
    12. Remove the pan from the heat, add the chili lime spice, and cilantro, and stir to combine.
    13. Taste and season Farofa with salt substitute and pepper. as needed,
    14. Slice the steaks across the grain into 1-inch thick slices.
    15. Serve hot with the farofa.



Ever since I saw the movie, I have wanted to make this dish. I guess I hung back because I am not a huge fan of eggplant. But I finally took the plunge and “Look Mom! No Eggplant(we don’t need no stinking eggplant!)”. A lot of slicing but I think the results work well.




1 (6 oz.) can tomato paste

½ onion, chopped

¼ cup minced garlic

1 Tbs capers, drained

¾ cup water

1Tbs olive oil

3 small to medium beets, peeled, trimmed, and very thinly sliced

3 zucchini, trimmed and very thinly sliced

3 yellow squash, trimmed and very thinly sliced

1 red bell pepper, cored and very thinly sliced

1 yellow bell pepper, cored and very thinly sliced

1 tsp fresh or dried thyme leaves, or to taste

salt substitute and ground black pepper to taste


  1. Prepare ingredients.
  2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  3. Spread tomato paste onto the bottom of a 10-inch square or round baking dish. Sprinkle with capers, onion, and garlic. Stir in water and 1 tablespoon of olive oil until thoroughly combined. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Arrange alternating slices of beets, zucchini, yellow squash, red bell pepper, and yellow bell pepper, starting at the outer edge of the dish and working concentrically towards the center. Overlap slices a little to display colors.
  5. Spray the top of the dish with olive oil spray; season with salt substitute and pepper. Sprinkle with thyme leaves. Cover vegetables with a piece of parchment paper cut to fit inside.
  6. Bake in the preheated oven until vegetables are roasted and tender, about 45 minutes.
  7. If you would like the top to be a bit browner or crispier, remove the parchment paper, switch to broil and watch closely for the color changes you want.


Sausage Stuffed Portobellos

This variation on my Crab Stuff Portobello recipe also came to me in a dream. Its very tasty and less bad for you too. 









6 Portobello mushrooms, washed and dried

1/2 cup Pablano chili, stemmed, seeded and finely chopped

1/2 cup onion, finely chopped

1/2 tsp Garlic Powder

1/2 tsp Tajin Classic Seasoning

1 Tbs roasted garlic, minced

1/2 cup Tamed Jalapeños, finely chopped

1 lbs.Turkey Breakfast Sausage)

2 Tbs key lime juice

1-2 cup Italian bread crumbs

1 Tbs Worcestershire sauce

1 egg, slightly beaten

1-2 Tbs hot sauce (optional)

1/2 tsp each Salt substitute and coarse ground pepper

2 Tbs unsalted butter substitute, melted

Lemon wedges and thinly sliced scallions for garnish.



  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Spray a large baking dish with cooking oil and set aside.
  2. Place the turkey sausage in a large skillet and season with Tajin, and garlic powder. Brown sausage and set aside on paper towels to drain.
  3. Add the onions, celery, and poblanos, and tamed jalapeño peppers. Cook, stirring, until softened, about 4 minutes. Add the parsley and the garlic, and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Remove from heat and let cool.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, gently mix the cooled vegetables into the cooled sausage and toss to combine. Add egg, key lime juice, Worcestershire, and hot sauce.  Add half of the Italian bread crumbs, the salt substitute, and pepper, and stir gently. Add more crumbs until the stuffing consistency is right, as needed.
  5. Wipe each portobello with olive oil. Stuff each mushroom with a mound about the same depth as the mushroom cap. 
  6. Place stuffed mushrooms into the prepared baking dish and place on the middle shelf of the preheated oven for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and change oven setting to Broil.
  7. Brush each mushroom with melted butter and return to oven. Watch closely so it doesn’t burn.
  8. Serve hot with lemon wedges and scallions garnish.