Prosciutto Wrapped Dates with Goat Cheese and Basil

Prosciutto Wrapped Dates with Goat Cheese and Basil

This is a perfect crowd-pleasing appetizer to serve alongside an excellent bottle of red wine. A rich, savory flavor results from pairing the saltiness of the prosciutto with the sweet date, and the creaminess of goat cheese with the fragrant crunch of fresh basil.     I have been craving an excuse to pick up fresh dates after coming across this incredible recipe for Cocoa-Chia Date Bites on The Fresh Find. This fantastic food blog brimming with healthy recipes and drool-worthy food photos was created by my inspiring, passion-seeking, optimist of a friend, Kristin.     The best part of this appetizer was that the prep took nearly no time at all. I whipped this up right before a Memorial Day barbecue. In just 3 short minutes, these were out of the oven with the goat cheese warm and bubbling.     Prep Time: 15 mins Serves: 6-9 Ingredients 16 Medjool dates, pitted 1/2 log goat cheese 16 fresh basil leaves 4 wide, thin slices of Prosciutto, cut into 4 long strips 16 toothpicks Preparation Spoon 1 teaspoon of goat cheese into each date. Wrap each date with a basil leaf, then with the thin strip of prosciutto. Secure with toothpick. With the oven set to broil, place wrapped dates on a cookie sheet and broil for 3 minutes until cheese is warm and...
Travel Solo

Travel Solo

This past winter I embarked upon a solo adventure to Cambodia and Thailand. The decision to take the trip alone came as my travel companions slowly dropped out. One of the most frequent questions I received before my departure was whether I was scared to be in a foreign country alone.     Fear of the unknown is one of those hurdles that when faced head-on, can propel us forward to new levels of understanding our self. It challenges us to operate from a level of instinct and intuition, rather than from habit and routine. It squashes the stagnation and dormancy that builds up from the routine of day-to-day living.     I set one explicit goal for myself  – I would find a studio to practice yoga in each city along the way. The beauty of this single mission was that it permitted me to explore these wondrous cities in a nontraditional light. I stumbled upon one spiritual oasis after another, tucked-away in Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, Koh Chang, and Chiang Mai.     This trip was by-far, one of the very best travel experiences of my life. The decision to do it alone making it all the more so. In an effort to convince others to take a leap of faith and travel solo, here are my top 5 reasons to do so:   1) Unparalleled Freedom- Not being tethered to a single thing was utterly exhilarating. Knowing I was thousands of miles away from any real responsibility or accountability to anyone other than myself was truly liberating. The ability to wake up each morning and spend the days to...
Superfood Acai Bowl

Superfood Acai Bowl

My hunt for the best acai bowl around town has been on par with my search for nailing down my ideal locale for a breakfast sandwich. I have firmly decided upon GTA for the latter. As for the acai quest, I gingerly accepted Novel Cafe as my best option but couldn’t help but cringe each time I forked up nearly $15 a bowl. Alas, it was time for a homemade option!   Shopping for fresh produce is my favorite part of preparing a new recipe. I headed over to the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market to sort through their vast array of fresh, seasonal berries. I left with a basket of strawberries and blueberries.     The real twist to this recipe was the addition of shredded coconut as a topping. It introduced a slightly sweet and nutty flavor, along with a crispier texture to a traditional acai bowl recipe.     In under ten minutes, I was able to whip up this nutrient-packed bowl for breakfast! Acai is one of the most potent superfoods, loaded with antioxidants, fiber, and heart-healthy fats.     Prep Time: 10 mins Serves: 1-2 Ingredients 1/2 cup blueberries, frozen 1 cup strawberries, frozen 1 large banana, frozen 1/2 cup coconut water 1 packet frozen Acai puree (available at Whole Foods) 3/4 cup granola Fresh sliced strawberries and banana to top Shredded coconut to top Preparation Blend the frozen berries, banana, coconut water, and Acai puree in a blender until smooth. Top with the granola and fresh-sliced strawberries and banana. Finish with a generous sprinkle of shredded...