Archive for the ‘FOOD’ Category



fried zucchini tacos | designlovefest

it’s zucchini season and i’m always looking for new ways to incorporate them into my summer cooking. i’ve been making beer battered zucchini fries for years and i decided that i wanted to turn them into tacos. call it the veggie version of fish tacos! they’re great to serve to a group as zucchini is really inexpensive and the texture, once it’s fried, it really does feel like a real fish taco. just make sure to serve them hot, they do not keep well. we served ours with a spicy chipotle hot sauce, crema and lots of cabbage slaw. ivan said it was one of the best tacos he has ever had and that’s saying something! let us know if you make them and how it turns out!  – joanie

fried zucchini tacos | designlovefest

what you’ll need:

• quarter of cabbage finely chopped
• 3 limes
• 2 teaspoon rice vinegar
• 1/2 teaspoon oregano
• vegetable oil
• 3/4 cup flour
• 1/2 cup cold wheat beer
• 1 egg beaten
• 3-4 zucchinis
• top tacos with crema – 1/4 mayo, 1/4 sour cream + juice of half a lime all mixed together.
• to serve:  salsa roja, sliced avocado, queso fresco, red onion, lime wedges.

fried zucchini tacos | designlovefest
fried zucchini tacos | designlovefest
fried zucchini tacos | designlovefest

• finely slice the cabbage and mix with the juice of 1 lime, rice wine vinegar, oregano, and a pinch of salt. massage until well mixed and set aside.

• slice the zucchini length wise and then in half.

• to make the batter, whisk the flour, beer, and beaten egg in a large bowl until well incorporated.

• in a deep pan fill about 2 inches deep with vegetable oil. heat on medium. test the oil to make sure it’s hot by throwing in a piece of zucchini and seeing if it sizzles. you could individually drop each piece in the batter but i prefer to throw a bunch in the bowl, mix it around and take them out one by one when it’s time to fry, letting the extra batter drip off. add the zucchini into the oil and fry until golden brown.

• remove the zucchinis from the pan and lay them on drying rack with paper towel below. while they are still hot sprinkle generously with salt.

fried zucchini tacos | designlovefest
fried zucchini tacos | designlovefest
fried zucchini tacos | designlovefest

toast the tortillas in a slightly oiled skillet until golden brown. set out all of the bowls of your chopped toppings and allow people to assemble on their own.

fried zucchini tacos | designlovefest

photos by: ivan solis
styling by: joanie cusack and ivan solis 



hi guys, bri here. i’ve been on a baked eggs KICK lately. i can’t stop trying different variations and people are always asking me how to do it…so let’s make some!

we made 4 different kinds, but really the options are endless. you will see how easy it is! these recipes are for 1-2 people. but i would say 2 eggs per person is best. okay, first up…


prosciutto and goat cheese baked eggs:
• 2 eggs
• 3 slices of  prosciutto
•2 cubes of unsalted butter
• 2 tablespoons heavy cream
• 2 tablespoons goat cheese
• 1 cup spinach
• fresh sprigs of thyme

preheat oven to 350. in a small saucepan, sauté the prosciutto on medium to low heat for about 3 minutes. remove from heat and set aside. in the same pan with a bit of olive oil or butter sauté the spinach for 3 minutes or until it has cooked down. set aside.

butter your choice of ramekins and begin to layer the ingredients. first with the prosciutto, spinach, egg, goat cheese, garnish of thyme and one tablespoon of heavy cream per ramekin. no need to salt this dish as the meat and cheese will have plenty!

bake for about 15 to 20 minutes, rotating the ramekins half way through.






poke bowls are certainly having a moment in southern california. it feels like there is one popping up on every corner. i don’t believe in eating too much tuna but they are certainly fun to indulge in every once in awhile! they are also great to offer to a group as you can set all of the toppings out in bowls and let people assemble as they like. for the tuna, we bought ours at whole foods. when you purchase, make sure it’s sushi grade as you’ll be eating it raw. you can do a lot of different sauces on the tuna, mayo + sriracha for spicy tuna, soy sauce + ginger and soy sauce + rice vinegar + sesame oil. play around with different flavor options and decide what works best for you! – joanie

makes 3-4 servings 

what you’ll need:

• 1 pound ahi tuna (sushi grade)
• 2 cups corn
• 2 cups edamame
• 3 small persian cucumbers sliced
• pickled ginger
• 1 cup white rice
• black sesame seeds
• 2 green onions diced
• 3 teaspoons masago
• 1 avocado thinly sliced

marinade for tuna:

• 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
• 1 teaspoon sesame oil
• 2 teaspoons soy sauce
• 1 teaspoon salt

wash rice in cold water. in a rice cooker, cook the white rice with 1 cup of water. in a medium bowl, mix the rice vinegar, sesame oil, soy sauce and salt. dice the tuna into small cubes and add to the marinade.

lay out all your toppings for assembling your poke bowls. fill your bowls with a serving of white rice and begin to add the tuna and toppings. we garnished ours with black sesame seeds and green onions. enjoy!

photos by: ivan solis
styling by: joanie cusack and ivan solis 




hope you all are looking forward to the long holiday weekend as much as we all are! below are some of our favorite summer recipes that would be perfect to whip up for you and your loved ones. truly can’t believe we’re already entering into july but ready to seize the summer and enjoy all of the outdoor dining that we can. have a great holiday!

4th of July recipes | designlovefest

ceviche with paprika chips – love this recipe and how quickly it comes together. there are few things better than homemade corn chips!

strawberry orange popsicles – make these ahead of time and have something pretty to pull out of the freezer when guests arrive. and they’re dairy free!

strawberry shortcake – utilize the fleeting months of strawberry season! you could even skip the cake part and just serve sliced strawberries with a bit of sugar top with whipped cream. or serve it over angel food cake!

mango ginger fizz – embrace summer cocktail season!

peach and burrata salad – you could use peach or melon in this salad, it’s delicious both ways.

blueberry popsicles – with a bit of basil (could make with mint too!). 

salmon burgers – for that BBQ you’re going to. don’t forget to toast the buns!

blood orange margaritas – such a beautiful drink. you could sub in watermelon juice instead of blood orange.

banana “ice cream”  – a healthier take on ice cream, perfect for those avoiding dairy!

carnitas tacos – recipe by our friend victoria and they are soooo good!





Mexican corn salad | designlovefest

my friend kathryn has made this corn salad for us a couple of times and it’s always a hit. i was super excited to see corn at the farmer’s market a couple of weeks ago because that means it is officially summer! if you have a bbq you can grill the corn, if not, you can use your broiler like we did. the recipe is fairly flexible, i like a lot of cilantro so i add almost an entire cup but you could cut down on that. we turned the salad into a meal by serving them on taco shells with avocado under but it’s almost better as a side dish, with grilled meat or could also doctor it up by adding red onion, black beans, jalapeño, etc and serve it on it’s own. enjoy! – joanie

Mexican corn salad | designlovefest

what you’ll need:

• 6 ears of corn
• juice of 2 limes plus more wedges for serving
• 1 big bunch of cilantro about 3/4 cups chopped. to prep, remove the tough ends of the stem and then finely chop the rest, you don’t need to de-stem it.
• 1/4 – 1/3 cup mayo
• 1 large avocado
• 1 teaspoon chili powder
• sprinkle of chili flakes for serving
• 1/2 cup cotija cheese crumbled (or feta if not available)
• small corn or flour tortillas (we toasted ours in avocado oil before serving to make them crispy)
• salt + pepper to taste

Mexican corn salad | designlovefest
Mexican corn salad | designlovefest

• remove husks and hairs on the corn and lay all six onto a baking sheet, brush with olive oil. set your oven to broil and roast the corn, the time will depend on you broiler strength, this look about 3-4 minutes on each side. it doesn’t all need to be brown, just some areas toasted.

• slice off the kernels from each corn into a bowl. add the cilantro, lime juice, cotija cheese, chili flakes, chili powder and mayo. mix well. season with salt and pepper, taste and adjust. i like a lot of lime juice so you may want to add more!

• heat your tortillas in a hot skillet, you can also add a little bit of olive oil/avocado oil if you would like them to be crispier. mash up a bit of avocado onto each tortilla and layer with the corn salad. enjoy!

Mexican corn salad | designlovefest
Mexican corn salad | designlovefest





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