Personal Stories

Cake Pop Bouquet and our 16th Anniversary together

Cake Pop Bouquet and our 16th Anniversary together

This week, exactly 16 years ago, we met in a itty bitty coffee house. Todd was behind the counter serving espresso’s and Diane walked in thirsty for a mocha. We talked about food, art, camping, motorcycles and gardening. Todd whipped up a mocha and added a rum flavoring to Diane (for free). Diane blushed, loves free stuff, and drank the magic potion and was smitten throughout the evening. 

That’s our love story in a nutshell and sixteen years later, that scene still exists. Every morning »

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My Summer Vacation, where I’m going to be fed

My Summer Vacation, where I’m going to be fed

I haven’t taken a personal vacation in years. To be exact, it’s been two years and 9 months. To be even further precise, dramatic (and redundant), it’s been 1,015 days, which feels like a lifetime for me.

Every time Todd and I plan on a vacation, an opportunity arrives at our door step and we accept it, putting our personal vacation aside till next the next month. Our choice to take these gigs over vacation isn’t because it’s about the money, but rather, they’re jobs »

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Shit Happens- Kitchen Disasters

Shit happens in the kitchen, more often than we would ever want and inevitably with the worst timing possible.

We don’t often fuss over kitchen mishaps because gravity exists everywhere and when dishes land on the floor, there are dogs to clean it up. Even when food becomes charcoal, there’s always a back up dish waiting to be made. Our attitudes are good and we always have a back up plan.»

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Cookbook shoot with Cristina Ferrare & New Oprah Winfrey Network show

Cookbook shoot with Cristina Ferrare & New Oprah Winfrey Network show

Todd  &  Cristina Ferrare previewing the cookbook images

We’ve worked with some lovely people during our photography career, but yet have we been able to meet anyone so sincerely generous and kind as Cristina Ferrare. And better yet, Cristina’s new cooking show,A Big Bowl of Love, will debut in January on the Oprah Winfrey Network!

All her success, both past and present, are well deserved. No wonder Oprah Winfrey loves Cristina so much and we adore her immensely.

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Video Tour- Dog’s View of Our Summer Garden 2010

Video Tour- Dog’s View of Our Summer Garden 2010

To celebrate the dawn of August and glorious, but sizzling Summer in full swing, we’re taking you on a tour of our Summer Garden.

This tour is from the perspective of our white boxer, Sierra.»

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Favorite Aged Treasures – Vintage Blue Mason Jars

We were in a Spring cleaning mode this week, not because it was in the Spring air (cause it’s Summer now) but because we had guests coming over. Within a few hours, we quickly spruced up each room back to tidyness , cleaned the rooms and reminded the dogs to be on their best behavior. The cleaning part is always easy but getting the dogs to not embarass us is always left to mother nature. Somewhere, somehow we failed in puppy training and they still »

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Pickled Green Tomatoes & The Butcher and the Vegetarian

Pickled Green Tomatoes & The Butcher and the Vegetarian


This year’s tomato track record isn’t all that bad yet and we’re immediately jumping on the pickling band-wagon. The current tomato plant count is 4 out of 20 died due to disease, which is much less than what we suffered last year.  In 2009, the whole nation suffered a tomato crisis where a late blight hammered many crops and home gardens.

Some tomatoes are more disease resistant than others, so with fingers tightly crossed, were thinking that the dead plants were the weaker varieties.

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Fresh Peas & Mint- Signs of Spring & Garden changes

What were once green, sprawling serpents have now reached  the peak of their pod-producing craze. The sugar-snap and snow peas have slowed down considerably and finally, we were able to keep up with them. Every morning for the past 2 months we had an espresso in one hand and went out to breakfast on the pea pods. We felt like grasshoppers grazing on all the pea tendrils and vines.

The fresh crunch and sweetness of all the pea pods was great, but after 2 months of »

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Roasted Radish and Greens Salad – A friendly food fight

We were talking to a friend about radish recipes and she swore up and down that the only way to eat radishes was raw, crunchy and fresh. There was no other option to eating radishes, raw was it, she declared. She’s a great gardener, cook and mom. Her dedication to family, food and a healthy lifestyle is admirable. We wish we could be like her when we grow up. But she’s wrong.

We don’t often argue about food, knowing that everyone has their own tastes »

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Vietnamese Caramel Braised Pork Belly Banh Mi – Nail Shop Eats #4

The leaning tower of pork belly banh mi: not for the light hearted

I’m not a comedian, nor was I trying to be one when I spoke frankly about my mother’s Nail shop cooking escapades. Like I’ve always said, my mother is a culinary fool, a manic of a woman who lives to feed her family of 6 kids and our extended family of neighborhood friends. She’s been known to get even more carried away and feed her nail shop clients homemade noodles and fish »

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Hot Chorizo Cream Cheese Dip – A recipe dedicated to my little brother

My little brother is man of few words. Indeed, he’s grown-up, a man who is only a few years my junior, but he’ll always be a little brother to me.

Since childhood, his silence was often overlooked because with so many frolicking kids in one household, all the loud chatter and squabble over the one television was usually ignored. With 6 high energy kids between the ages of 5-16, my parents became selectively deaf to all our loud obsessions and disputes over the Atari game »

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Persimmon and Cinnamon Oatmeal – Vote for a Great Cause!

Growing up with two huge persimmon trees in my parents backyard, I had my fair share of persimmon- in 3 ways.

The first was to eat it fresh till my belly could hold no more, the second was to water the trees, the third was to clean off all the fallen persimmon leaves on the weekends. Trust me, I enjoyed the eating part of it, but the garden chores were too much for an Atari loving, roller-skating 8th grader like me to enjoy. Cleaning up »

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Roasted Potatoes w/ Fried Sage, Brown Butter – A Healing Memory

I’ve often wondered what value my Ethno-botany days at the University have on my current career now. Back in my college days, I dreamed of finding the cure to cancer via medicinal plants, to live in the rainforest with native cultures and learn their traditional methods of healing through local plants. I romanced the idea of healing the world, to be the Medicine Woman, to climb big tall trees and scale the mountain tops, just like Sean Connery.

Now, I photograph pictures of restaurants and »

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Versatile Curry Gravy with Fried Fish (or what ever you heart!)

I can’t imagine a life without curry. Thinking about it brings a void and desperate plea to my palate, “Noooooo!”  The warm, fragrant combination of spices topped over warm rice, tofu, veggies,  fish or meats is indispensable for me. Long ago, I swore to not live a bland life. I shall not live curry-less.

As versatile as it is delicious, my curry gravy is great accompaniment to almost any dish that needs a quick burst of flavor. Simple olive or grape seed oil, garlic and »

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The Ultimate Umami Burger

The Ultimate Umami Burger

For the longest time, we’ve been making the best darn hamburger on the face of this earth (insert personal bias.) We’ve never had a specific name for the recipe until someone tagged it as the “magic meat”, but not as in “mystery meat” or “I can’t tell if this is chicken or beef.” Rather, it was to describe the magical flavor sensations that everyone experienced when they bit into one of our patties. That “magic meat” term  described the juicy, flavorful and savory burger patty »

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Perfect summer gatherings, crab fest & recipes for celebrating

A perfect summer evening happened last week. Wonderful food and captivating conversations in the company of great people, on a gorgeous summer day which couldn’t have been any better for a Summer fete.

The loving and ever so gorgeous couple Brooke of FoodWoolf and her husband, Hans of BarFood, hosted a crab fest at their Los Angeles home. Their set up, attention to detail and menu was amazing. Right smack in the middle of their driveway alley, a long feasting table was set up, all »

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More ghost stories & my love of aged treasures

I’m at it again and finding myself wandering through my favorite antique/vintage malls, just because, I think, that they’re calling out for my companionship. Aged dishware, old garden pottery and vintage items whisper stories to me. Woe is me to find friendship in junk. I’m not ashamed.

I touch, smell, ask and listen.

I answer back with a gazillion questions —–Hello? Where have you traveled from? How long have you been here? Are you lonely? Do you want to be purchased? Or do you enjoy »

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Vegetable/Herb Spring Rolls for Summer Fest 2009- Share your recipes, garden tips & stories

Vegetable/Herb Spring Rolls for Summer Fest 2009- Share your recipes, garden tips & stories

A new blogging event has just launched and this time, it’s a fun, free for all celebration of Summer’s bounty! Started last Summer by Margaret Roach of Away to Garden and Deb Puchalla, which was called Food Fest, lovers of everything fresh, delicious, and/or from the garden shared ideas and recipes from across the globe. Last summer’s event was a cross-blog event where they would announce a food or “crop” in advance and they would then swap recipes, growing tips, lore and whatever else came »

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Portrait of a Gourmand – Todd of White On Rice Couple blog

Portrait of a Gourmand A gourmand is simply, someone who takes pleasure in food and eating. This is a continuing photographic series of gourmands, from all walks of life. There are many gourmands that inspire us in profound ways that make us experience and think about food differently. These portraits essays share their amazing stories.

Our very own Todd of White On Rice Couple is now in front of the lens, rather than being behind the scenes, where he normally is for these Portrait »

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Bonded by a cookbook- Spinach salad w/toasted almonds, apples & Vermouth vinaigrette

Bonded by a cookbook- Spinach salad w/toasted almonds, apples & Vermouth vinaigrette

Sometimes the simplest of things can end up blossoming to be the most beautiful and sophisticated creations. As cliche as it may sound, it’s so true that simplicity is often the best and most gratifying approach to cooking. It took a while for me to apply this same philosophy to finding recipes from cookbooks because I’ve always had a big heart and open pocketbook (Visa credit line) for big, extensive, beautifully-photographed books. As our library of big, bold, complicated cookbooks filled our shelves, I always »

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