Mango Chipotle Zinger Guacamole

Guacamole has so many variations, almost all of which are fantastic. One combo I’d not yet tried is adding nuts. As I had a drawer full of Olomomo nuts, one of which was their Mango Chipotle Zinger Almonds, a bowl full of ripe mangos, and a few avocados, it seemed like the planets had aligned for my next recipe featuring Olomomo nuts.

Mango Chipotle Zinger

Olomomo’s Mango Chipotle Zinger Almonds not only add just the right amount of crunch, the flavor profile is perfect for this guacamole.

Mango Chipotle Zinger Almonds

It’s just some ripe avocado, cubes of champagne mango, garlic, salt, lemon juice, aleppo pepper, and coarsely chopped almonds. I’d say add as much or little as you like. You know how to make a good guac… You don’t need me to tell you.

Mango Chipotle Zinger Guacamole


Applewood Smoked Cashew Stir Fry

I’ve been a fan of Boulder-based Olomomo nuts for a number of years now, but the chef in the house hadn’t heard of them until a box of goodies showed up at our door from Olomomo a few weeks ago. I dropped everything I was doing and started opening up bag after bag and alternated between eating a few and shoving them at him saying “try THIS one.” Chai Bliss Almonds, Righteous Cinnamon Cayenne Almonds, Mango Chipotle Zinger Almonds, Cherry Vanilla Almonds… I had a really hard time showing restraint from stuffing my face with almonds.

But, they’ve branched out and are no longer faithful to just the almond: There’s Cosmic Maple Masala Pecans and Applewood Smoked Cashews. The cashews were the first to go, and I’m considering making them a staple in the house because they’re the perfect addition to stir fries.

I don’t have a step-by-step recipe here, as it was a really simple and quickly prepared dish, but I’ll tell you the basics and highlight the Applewood Smoked Cashews as the ingredient that tied it all together.

Stir Fry with Applewood Smoked Cashews

I fried some onion, garlic, and eggplant in peanut oil and soy sauce while boiling rice noodles. The noodles were done at the same time as the veggies, so I added them to the wok with some more soy sauce, a couple tablespoons of liquid tamarind, the juice of a lemon, and a bit of kecap manis. After it was all well mixed, I served it topped with avocado, chopped parsley, and Olomomo Applewood Smoked Cashews.

The cashews provided the needed crunch, and their flavor was a perfect match for stir fries. We’ll be doing it again- different veggies, different noodles, different sauce, and it won’t matter. Olomomo’s Applewood Smoked Cashews are the secret ingredient to a perfect stir fry.

melT: The Almond Drop

I met Melissa Thomas on a progressive dining tour with Local Table Tours. We got to talking about cooking, food blogging, the gluten free trend and just how terrible some of the “healthy” gluten free pre-packaged foods taste. Melissa mentioned that she actually made a gluten free treat called The Almond Drop. She told me that her original intentions were not to create a gluten free product, but it just so happened to be delicious and naturally gluten free, so she found herself right in the middle of the gluten free industry. As she was incredibly friendly, a knowledgable foodie, and passionate about her craft, I told her I’d love to sample them and write a post to help spread the word.

I was expecting a small sample, perhaps one or two of each flavor, so I was really surprised when she gave me four whole packages: Walnut White Chocolate Dried Cherries, Cranberry Chocolate, Apricot Chocolate, and Simply Apricot (a vegan treat). I’m really glad she was generous with me because these things were my nightly dessert for a week or so.

Almond Drops

A combination of almonds, dates, almond butter, unsweetened coconut, and flax has never tasted so good. These little bite-sized balls are sweet enough (agave syrup) to satisfy my sweet tooth, yet wholesome enough to indulge in more than just one, as those calories (140 per ball) are mostly comprised of nuts and healthy fats. I loved each variety of Almond Drop almost equally, and found that having all four in one sitting made for a most satiating dessert.

You can purchase The Almond Drop here in Boulder at Whole Foods and Lucky’s Market. Way to go, melT Foods! That’s a well-deserved product placement.


Pizzicletta- Quite possibly my favorite place ever…

It’s been well over a month since Sean and I visited Flagstaff, AZ, for a taste of Pizzicletta, and writing this article has been on the top of my “to do” list for weeks now. My paying jobs have kept me busy, so every day I look at my list and reminisce on quite possibly one of my favorite places I’ve ever dined.

Caleb Schiff, owner and pizzaiolo of Pizzicletta, came to Boulder in the fall of 2013 to be a guest chef at the original Pizzeria Locale. We got some great friends together in the caffe space (which has now been renovated into a private dining room), and had a private room to drink fun wines, enjoy one of the best meals of the year, and meet Caleb. You can read all about that fine meal on my business site, Local Table Tours.  As much as I’d love to relive that meal, I have another story to tell here… And so, we were so impressed by this chef and his food that Sean decided to surprise me for my birthday with a trip to Flagstaff to dine at Pizzicletta and ski the Arizona Snowbowl. Greatest birthday present ever! He’s a total keeper.


Pizzicletta is a really small, triangular shaped restaurant, in the same building as Mother Road Brewing, which we visited, of course. The Stefano Ferrara oven, a staple for chefs who are serious about wood-fired cooking, is the centerpiece of the kitchen.

Pizzicletta Oven

We entered that evening to find more than one familiar face. Our server had also been our server earlier that day at Diablo Burger (a place Caleb suggested we experience), so it felt like walking into our neighborhood pizzeria on the first night we arrived in town.

Sean and I ordered the formaggi with focaccia to start the evening and a bottle of Verdicchio. The cheeses, as expected, were delightful. But, the green hue to the freshly pressed olive oil drizzled over the mozzarella was most impressive to me. Green-grass-fresh-pressed olive oil… You’ve got to love that!

Formaggi with Focaccia

Caleb is an artisan, and the featured olive oils from Casa Pau Hana Olive Farm in Paso Robles is just one of his carefully selected ingredients that help make Pizzicletta the finely put together casual dining establishment that it is. But more on our respect for this chef later. Back to our meal…

Our next plate was a salad of greens, toasted pine nuts, and chevre. And, here’s a fun fact: Pizzicletta only has itsy bitsy saucers or large pizza plates, so our salad was served on a rather substantial piece of ceramic. But, the veggie lover in me couldn’t resist something green, so I made sure to lick this platter clean (Jack Sprat, anyone? ), which was not challenging at all despite it’s large size.


We ordered two pizzas that evening- The SS145- a Bianca with roasted almonds, charred kale, gorgonzola, olive oil, and lemon juice, which, by the way, completely blew our minds! We also ordered a special of the evening that had Caleb’s special touch- Calabrian Chilis, and broccoli rabe, a personal favorite of mine in Italian cooking. Both pizzas, with their “leopard-spotted” crust of wild sour dough yeast were next to impossible to put down, despite our full bellies telling us otherwise. Caleb’s pizza, quite simply, is something you must try, as it’s incredibly difficult to explain perfection to someone who hasn’t tasted it before.

Pizzicletta Pizza

Despite the fact that we were literally stuffing ourselves at this point, we both thought Caleb’s house made gelatto was a good idea… and it WAS! There was no olive oil gelatto offered that evening as we had enjoyed at his guest event at Locale, but the chocolate and vanilla were, like all other dishes at Pizzicletta, perfect.

Pizzicletta Ice Cream

Talking to Caleb made it abundantly clear that he’s not just some guy who likes to cook, or likes pizza, so he opened a pizzeria. He is a man (geologist, actually), who rode a bike around Italy, found inspiration to open a pizzeria, and pays attention to every single detail. The olive oil is one example. Another is the wood he burns in his artisanal oven that comes from southern AZ and is dried for years before reaching Pizzicletta. This particularly dry wood allows his oven to reach a very high temperature that creates the well known leopard spots on his crust. Caleb’s dough, by the way, doesn’t even make it into the oven until the wild yeast sour dough ferments for days, sometimes upwards of a week. He hand crafts every pie to order topping them with very few ingredients.

And, I must admit the notice on the menu of “No Substitutions Please” was very much appreciated, coming from the substitution or ingredient exclusion capital of the world, Boulder CO.

So, if you’re on  a food quest of some kind, please add Pizzicletta to your list. And if you’re even just passing by Flagstaff, perhaps on Route 66, I suggest a brief detour to enjoy some of Americas best pizza.


203 W Phoenix Ave, Flagstaff, AZ


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