My culinary journey began at a very young age while watching my grandmother in her kitchen. I learned by her side, and the unconditional love and support she provided gave me the strength I have today. This asset allowed me to pivot during my darkest times.
I am a registered dental hygienist and have been working in dentistry for more than 29 years. When the dental closed office during March 2020, my heart sank. I remember sitting in my garage for days, thinking the world was about to end. As I sat there, feeling overwhelmed and sad, I decided to pull myself together and bake some bread. This was the very first cooking lesson I received. I felt her presence that day, and all I could see while I was kneading the bread were her mighty hands working the dough and guiding me through the steps on how the dough should look and feel.
From that day forward, I decided to turn my enthusiasm for cooking into a career with the launch of my boutique catering business and food blog. I bring a refined approach to the beloved Mediterranean tradition, using fresh, seasonal, and quality ingredients. My ethos is centered around my family and culture. The art of sharing and gathering around the table is an integral part of my life. This ancient Greek value, philoxenia, lives deep in my heart and brings me so much joy to connect and share my culture.
Warm Farro, Butternut Squash and Mushroom Medley
- 1 cup farro
- 2 1/2 cups vegetable broth or water
- 1 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and diced into 1-inch cubes
- 8 ounces mushrooms (cremini, shiitake, or your choice), sliced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
- Fresh parsley or chives for garnish (optional)
- In a medium saucepan, combine farro and vegetable broth or water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer for about 25-30 minutes, or until the farro is tender but still has a slight chewiness. Drain any excess liquid and set aside.
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Toss the diced butternut squash with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme. Spread the squash out on a baking sheet and roast for 20-25 minutes or until tender and slightly caramelized. Remove from the oven and set aside.
- Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat in a skillet. Add the sliced mushrooms and sauté until they are browned. Remove the mushrooms from the skillet and set aside.
- Prepare the Medley: In the same skillet, add the chopped onion pieces and cook until they become translucent. Stir in the garlic and cook for another minute until fragrant. Add the farro, roasted butternut squash and sautéed mushrooms. Garnish and serve.