Manda Cooks: Aloha Fried Rice


When I think of fried rice, I think of the generic dish at Chinese restaurants that is nothing more than carrots, peas and onions. Not that exciting, am I right? I decided to re-invent fried rice for myself a few weeks ago using a bit more variety in flavors and veggies. I used onion, carrots, and broccolini in the bowl above, and added a red pepper to the mix in the pan below. There was probably some kale thrown in there too because, you know, I’m obsessed with kale and all. I used coconut oil to cook the veggies (another obsession) and then used ginger, sriracha and soy sauce to season the dish. Super easy, and really quick. 




Then, I had a moment of genius and added a packet of aloha to my bowl. The Daily Good contains coconut water, lemon, mushrooms and ginger (among other delicious things) — I figured since these flavors are often found in Asian cuisine, I’d give it a go. The results were great, and The Daily Good has joined the ranks of my other go-to ingredients.


Manda Cooks: Bridal Shower Sweets

One of my best friends from high school, Allison, is getting married in June! Allison is my first good friend to walk down the aisle and I’m so excited to be a part of it. A few weeks ago we got together for her bridal shower. I, of course, volunteered to make dessert – I took advantage of the opportunity to try a new cake recipe, and also whipped up some funfetti cake pops, which are always a crowd pleaser.


Although Ina Garten’s Coconut Cake is usually my white-cake go-to, I saw the prettiest Chocolate Chip Cake on Pinterest and decided to give it a try for the bridal shower. My mom and Barry were working on selling their house at the time and, mid-way through mixing together the batter, we ended up having to leave the house for an hour so it could be shown. Eek! The first two layers I made ended up being a little denser and flatter than I was hoping, I think due to the fact that the baking powder reacted while we were gone? In true spazzy Amanda fashion, I decided later that night around midnight that I just **had** to make a third layer. I had to! So that’s what I did. And layer #3 was a fluffier, prettier version of the first two. The next “oops” came when we didn’t have enough powdered sugar in the house to double the frosting recipe… but I made it work, and spread the frosting as thin as possible. Probably a new world record for frosting spreading, or something. Anyway! Hopefully I don’t think either of my oops-es were detectable, because people enjoyed the cake without complaint. It ended up being a denser cake than I wanted (which I should have known based on the recipe) but a delicious and, more importantly, pretty cake regardless.


Oh, and then there were the cake pops, which never fail me : )