Kale, lemons and lima beans at the festival

Rafael Castillejo and Javier Reyes of Reality Changers volunteered at the lima bean festival, serving Mary Dralle's Lemony Lima Poppyseed Cake. (Photo by Laura Groch)

Rafael Castillejo and Javier Reyes of Reality Changers volunteered at the lima bean festival, serving Mary Dralle’s Lemony Lima Poppyseed Cake. (Photo by Laura Groch)

Me with Jean Bruns of the San Dieguito Heritage Museum, who was supervising the Encinitas Lima Bean Cookoff and Faire. (Photo by Laura Groch)

Me with Jean Bruns of the San Dieguito Heritage Museum. (Photo by Greg Groch)

Kale, lemons and of course, lima beans were the dominant flavors Saturday at the Encinitas Lima Bean Cookoff and Faire, put on by the San Dieguito Heritage Museum off Quail Gardens Drive.

I helped with the judging, sampling everything lima-beanish from Mini Sweet Pepper Poppers to Hawaiian Lima BBQ Beans to Lima-Kale Gratin and Cinnabean Rolls. (Winning recipes in an upcoming post.)

It was a lot of fun, with some very nice people who enjoyed the afternoon, the Continue reading

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It’s all about those beans, ’bout those beans — and Restaurant Week, too

Lima Bean Festival

Cooking instructor Mary “Cooking With Klibs” Dralle was among those exhibiting bean ideas at the 2014 Lima Bean Festival at the San Dieguito Heritage Museum. (Photo by Laura Groch)

Some very local goings-on in this post, starting with:

— Encinitas’ San Dieguito Heritage Museum, which is hosting its 7th annual Lima Bean Festival from noon-4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 26. I’m helping judge the entries in the cooking contest, which is always a fun part of the festivities. But it’s not all about the beans, though — there are other attractions, including a plant sale, silent auction, kids games and tours of the historical Teten House. Come on by and taste-test (from 12:30-2:30 p.m.) the different concoctions dreamed up by area chefs, amateurs and Continue reading

Here’s a scoop — make your own chocolate syrup

So. Hot. Need. Ice. Cream.

You can easily make your own chocolate syrup with just five ingredients. Photo by Laura Groch

You can easily make your own chocolate syrup with just five ingredients. Photo by Laura Groch

With chocolate syrup, of course.
Here’s how to make chocolate syrup on the cheap, and without any artificial ingredients.
One of the things I like to do in this blog is to offer easier, cheaper ways to make food. We used to call them helpful hints; today they’re called “kitchen hacks.” (Whatevs.) It’s all still about saving money and time, and sometimes making things a bit more healthful.
I know: What’s so healthy about chocolate syrup? It’s full of sugar. Well, OK — too much sugar is bad for you, so please don’t eat the entire potful of chocolate syrup I’m going to show you how to make. (One pot is not 1 serving.)

Continue reading