Cantaloupe Gazpacho | @thefauxmartha

I’ve scrolled through Facebook 6 times now. I can repeat every status update and story. With each scroll, I’m certain the words will spill out like the heavy rain-filled clouds of April. Another scroll through. Nothing. There’s 19 abandoned plants sitting in the garage and a hole in the wall just above the guest room bed meant for a mirror that’s just a little too small. I wish that pink bubble gum medicine could cure my case of decision paralysis.  Read more

20-minute Tomato Soup | @thefauxmartha

I’ve only recently started listening to podcasts. It’s in direct correlation with taking better care of myself this year—both my mind and my body. Running again has carved out time for podcasts. It’s making me smarter. And more fit too. (I hope.) I oscillate between listening to The Splendid Table, A Couple Cooks, and Food Blogger Pro. I’m certain there are extra calories associated with food podcasts. Read more

Slow-cooked Beef and Plantain Arepas | @thefauxmartha

This recipe came about because of a food truck turned tiny restaurant in Minneapolis—Hola Arepa. When we go out to dinner, it’s the only place I ever want to go. Kev likes a little more variety in his life. But I’m a minimalist. So I go on repeat with Steph and Lindsay because they feel the same way. I order an El Diablo cocktail followed by the Shredded Beef and Plantain Arepa. Every single time.  Read more

No Boil Pasta Bake | @thefauxmartha

We’ve come to that point in our relationship where you’re either going to think I’m super cool or just plain lazy. Or maybe both. Lately, Kev’s been asking where are all those pasta bakes that I used to make. As if I’ve stuffed them into a box misplaced in the basement. “By the time I cook the noodles and make the sauce,” I said, “we might as well eat dinner rather than throwing it into another dish to bake even longer, another dish I have to clean. Also, have you heard her pre-dinner toddler grump?” But that got me thinking—I wonder if we can skip the whole boil-the-pasta part? If so, that might just give his beloved pasta bake a fighting chance around here. Read more

Quick Red Pozole | @thefauxmartha

It’s pronounced Po-sol-eh, though Kev leaves off the “eh” for reasons unknown. It comes in red, white, or green. I had my first bowl a couple years ago at Chipotle, so the authenticity may be questionable. This soup, spotted with hominy, is commonly served in Mexico as a celebratory dish. And since the next two months are filled with celebrations (especially in the red, white, and green color palette), I thought I’d shake up the traditional celebratory fare at this house. Because we’re staying home for the holidays. And that might be the bigger shakeup.  Read more

Butternut Kale Tamale Bake | @thefauxmartha

I know, I know. I keep writing about it—the surprise factor of dinner. Or maybe I keep talking about it every other post on Instagram. We’re getting to that point in our relationship when I can’t remember what I’ve told you. But everyday come 5, I’m shocked that it’s dinner time. Again. Didn’t I just finish cleaning last nights dishes? I’ve tried meal planning, but since it’s not a permanent fixture in my calendar, it only takes a week or two to lose steam. And thinking about the whole week in advance gives me hives. I’m a one-day-at-a-time girl, which works quite well until 5:00 pm. Read more

Easy Pasta

“Hey Melissa, we have some exciting news! Will you send me your email address?” The message was in my Facebook inbox from Ian who works at Saveur. This must be the meanest scam ever, I thought. I sent my address anyways. In my email inbox the next morning was the craziest email of my career. I guess that’s what you call this thing. A career. “Congratulations, you are a finalist for the Best Style & Design Blog category for the 2017 Saveur Blog Awards.” My hands trembled. They’re still trembling. I took a screenshot of the email as proof and sent it to Kev and my sister. Read more

One Pot Butternut Squash Soup | @thefauxmartha

I ditched my afternoon work plans and downloaded the new Bon Appétit after hearing it was shot entirely with an iPhone (!!). I’ve dreamt of this day. The DLSR has always felt too heavy and intimidating in my hands. Last summer I attended a photography workshop put on by Muir Glen with House of Brinson. I timidly rose my hand and jumbled my words to eventually ask if they thought the iPhone would be considered a professional tool for photographers. As soon as the technology improves, yes, they said. I sighed a huge sigh of relief, knowing that one day shooting recipes might not make me sweat so much. I love the simplicity of shooting with my phone. I can see the composition on the screen and quickly adjust if it’s off. It’s quick and efficient. It absolutely suits me. As does this one pot butternut squash soup. Because two pots would be too many, too heavy. I might not even make it. Read more