EMILIANO & JAEHEE
emiliano@lacasapark.com  917 406 2854
jaehee@lacasapark.com  917 373 1548
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IMG_3034Ana’s gorgeous Raw Creation, Dates and Raisin Pecan pie with Edible flowers! So smart! So delicious! And So Raw!

It was So So So nice to have spent some descent time with Keith and Ana again! It has been so long since the last time we hung out together, which I honestly don’t even remember when exactly that was. A year? or More?  The fact that Keith and Ana getting on this raw food journey they have chose for a more than a year now actually somehow distanced us physically a bit because we used to meet up and have quite a cook offs together. Ana will chop, Keith will peel and Emi will stir and simmer. For hours and many nights. I’ll say the food-ing definitely bonded us.  Apart from many interests we have in common or not in common as we all are quite eccentric if you would call it. Art and Design for sure and crush on certain crazy artists and musicians we share. Nothing wrong about eating cooked food but as Ana was sort of suffering a bit with indigestion and maybe even some allergies as many of us do. Like wheat, dairy and so on.

Keith and Ana were always healthy eaters, but complete change to Eating only raw food sounded quite extreme to me I have to say. I mean what would it be like? Would it be boring? Do you only eat leaves and carrots? Will you be hungry sometimes?  How are you going to eat beans? They usually come dry. You know what I mean? I had asked myself many times what it would be really like even though I am completely ” IN” for the idea just imagining how raw food will sort of clean your system and my quite “well bred common food knowledge” as an Korean especially grown up with my family like grandma, aunt and my mom who all are absolute sort of food freaks making everything from scratch in such healthy way. I mean I had already mastered what specific colors of food group really means to your body by when I was like 8 years old. It was so common my mom and aunt will call out what is what and how you should prepare them not to waste any nutrition. Then there was the master of masters,  my grandma making everything at home from Tofu to facial moisturizer.

Thursday dinner with Keith And Ana had answered me great deal of my curiosity about eating raw food. It opened my eyes bit about creating your own food culture in very healthy ways and I also realized it would ask quite a bit of creativity and food brain. And surely being open minded.

IMG_3010Flax seed and Zucchini flat bread. Keith and Ana use great deal of food dehydrator and processor to create certain textures and consistencies. This bread was prepared by using a dehydrator.  My verdict? It has great bite to it and has really nice nutty flavor. I am a nut lover, so anything nutty, I love!

IMG_3019Ana prepping a starter. Avocado mousse with dried porcini mushroom. It’s packed with flavor and supper fluffy. It melts in your mouth! A kick from Cayenne pepper is really nice too.

IMG_3020Drizzle of olive oil and fresh black pepper at serving. This was quite filling I didn’t t finish it up.

IMG_3012Cherry tomato and Zucchini salad.

IMG_3014Anna called it rice. It’s actually finely chopped parsnip and pine nuts and seasoning. This got that rice like texture. It’s satisfying like you are having cooked carbohydrate like potato or rice. It has quite intense flavor. I don’t know why I always thought raw food would not have same level of flavor as cooked food. I was totally wrong about it. Raw food actually tends to have more flavor as you are eating the ingredient raw as it is.  There’s no hiding. That straight up flavor is quite impressive.

IMG_3015Simple tomato salsa. Nice one!

IMG_3023So we are building sort of Open sandwich like.  Bread, then spread ” Cashew nut spread :blend the Cashew with bit of water, salt, olive oil, onion or what ever other flavor you would like to add, this comes out super creamy and naturally bit sweet, You know my mom has been making this instead of using Mayo!!  Then add Cherry tomato and Zucchini salad on top. And Ana had also other couple toppings like chopped olives and simple bell peppers.  You build however you like. This open sandwich is SO DELICIOUS! Every ingredients come through nicely with it’s own honest flavor. It’s super refreshing. It’s clean and delicious!

IMG_3021No Not red wine.  Keith and Ana stopped drinking when they started Raw food. This is hibiscus flower tee. Earthy and strong. It’s quite great.

IMG_3024We chatted and chatted. It’s great time we were having!  And Ana totally surprises me pulling this fabulous raw number for dessert! Isn’t it so gorgeous?!!!

IMG_3029For a second, it feels like autumn has arrived! The earthy and rich colors of edible flowers… Everything feels so smart tonight!

IMG_3033It’s not over yet! Ana also makes Banana ice cream to accompany her gorgeous pie. Nope. No  dairy in here! So clever how she makes this. Freeze couple Bananas and throw them in a food processor with bit of water added. That’s all you need to do. I guess you can add Vanilla, or even other fruits a bit in there? The secret is the banana itself. When it gets all meshed up, it got that perfect smooth ice cream texture. Delicious!

IMG_3032Ana mentioned there are good amount of beautiful raw dessert recipes out there. Ana, I forget the name of the book you showed me…!

IMG_3036Ana cutting it and Keith serving it!

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IMG_3038And Yes, that was So mine!  Delicious!!!

First, I like to thank you two, Ana and Keith for the wonderful food you made for me and for our friendship! I had a great time with you guys! And also I don’t know why we haven’t got together more in the past year. We can always meet for galleries or films, or over a simple cup of green tea. And I am totally going to make you guys some raw dishes I like to try! At the end, we have quite of raw food we eat daily or drink. Don’t we?  Any pickles or any salad, the fruit juice… Wraps, fresh corn on the cob as I like to eat them raw many times. We got some basic going on so I like to try some innovative dishes for us next time!  Thank you for teaching me to utilize all the great food sources out there! Raw is exciting!

Stay tuned! xx

IMG_2841Awesome Breezy Entrance at MoMA PS1.  Warm Up Ps1:  the Ultimate Summer Party for NYC!

I can’t believe it’s already the 14th year now MoMA PS1 is holding this music, dance, art installation that’s all happening in one gigantic outdoor party on Saturdays all summer long at this cool industrial area in Queens, NYC!!!  When we all heard then MoMA was branching out a sister MoMA out to Queens: PS1 taking over formal Public School #1 on Queens, We all were bit skeptical even though there are a few prominent Art and Design institutional places like Noguchi museum in the same neighbor hood.  \It felt bit out of the way compare to the mail one is on posh and touristy uptown in Manhattan. But PS1 had proved that was only a worry that we didn’t have to have at all after all. PS1 now has grown into a proud and even more rebellious and interesting little yet not so little sister of MoMA fueling Powerful Energy of New and Young Generation of Cool NYC peeps. And  maybe even of the “World” as you will be surprised to see and hear how many international visitors at not just “Warm” but maybe more of “Hot” summer Dance parties that PS 1 is housing year after year.  Every year PS1 holds a competition to design and doll up their envious grand schemed concrete and grabbled awesomely modern yard, and I personally like to thank to MomA doing this so as this is an absolutely a brilliant idea and also a another definite reason what attracts me and sure all other visitors to go visit PS1 as the yearly brand new Summer installation is something that you must not miss.

This year’s simple yet breezy and green installation is another winner that you want to see and I highly recommend the actual exhibitions that are going on in this beautiful formal public school space as it’s filled with much entertaining (I rather like to call it entertaining! ) Rayan Trecartin’s Any Ever : the short film series, and my absolute favorite of all, a screening of Alejandro Jodorowsky’s The Holy Mountain ( the screening ends on July 24th) which I ended up buying the DVD at the bookstore is another one you should not miss!!

The Warm Up Summer party at PS1 runs until the September 3rd with various DJS from around the world, So you haven’t missed much but certain exhibitions will do end at certain point, so if you are not sure what to do on Saturdays, pS1 Warm up party will be the perfect thing to do for this entire summer!

Now I like to share some pics from my visit to PS 1 Warm Up party this Saturday, July 16!

IMG_2840Yes the kid are welcome, but if you like to bring your little ones go early and live early. It get’s bit intense for the little ones later on. The party hour is 2-9 pm.

IMG_2844Hay Garden. No Smoking!

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IMG_2848Real good seating this year. Not too obscure to sit down and there were plenty of these to mingle and chat.

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IMG_2851Loving the fact they had brought quite an amount of trees this year.

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IMG_2857Gael, no worries, I promise you I’ll take you here! The September 3rd, We will come back all together with Dad!

IMG_2858Yes, we will play ping pong too! Love you. Miss you Gael!

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IMG_2860Loving the Crowd. The People. All together. Can’t help it!

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IMG_2866DJs and Bands rotating all day.

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IMG_2881Inside the Museum building. Entrance at Ryan Trecartin’s.

IMG_2884There were 6 rooms I believe set up in all different way with Head sets for you to use. Plenty of odd and fun seating were built for the audience. And comfy!

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IMG_2894Hospital beds turned to mega seating.

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IMG_2910I have mixed thoughts and feeling about Laurel Nakadate: Only the Lonely work series. Hmmm , If anyone likes to discuss about it with me, shoot me an email!

IMG_2911I adore PS1′s staircase murals!

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IMG_2921Permanent collection: James Turell’s ” Meeting”, 1986

IMG_2920Visitors gaging and enjoying this wonderfully opened up room with natural light and air coming through.

IMG_2923Here’s the movie I was talking about. Crazy, beautiful photography, not normal, disturbing, funny, sick, calm, tripping and everything else. Alejandro Jodorowsky: The Holy Mountain, 1973 and couple more scenes from the film below.

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IMG_2929The Book store.

IMG_2932The cafe.

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IMG_29337:30. Now it’s really crowded! Music’s  pumping, people are dancing, being silly, whatever!

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IMG_2970Ahhh Emi, I so wished you were standing right next to me!! I miss you Emi!!

IMG_2973With Adriana and Dani.

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IMG_2991Good job Sir! The last DJ.

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If you haven’t yet, go check it out!!!


IMG_2385Peaking through the lush Pine bush at Cala Violina, Maremma, Italy

You juts fall in love at the first sight! What can I say. She’s this perfectly sized cozy little bay hidden behind beautiful Campo di Girasole, the Sunflower field from the main road. It costs you walking about 1.5 km to get to the actual beach once you get to the main parking lot which city runs. Only 250 cars are allowed in that parking lot which means about only little more than 1000 people can be allowed on the beach. Actual walking isn’t too bad and it’s all worth it. Apart from this beautiful crystal clear water of the bay, but also impressively lush pine bush is another reason why you want to be there. Beautiful cool shade that Pine bush makes is a perfect lunch spot and relaxing and it makes Cala Violina to be the ideal day trip destination!

Cala Violina is situated in Gulf of Follonica which is the heart of Natural reserve of Bandite di Scarlino as you can sense it from controlled parking lot and the amount of the cars that are allowed in there is pretty much untouched.  There’s saying floating around where the name of this bay had come from. It say when you walk upon the sand , it emits musical notes like the sound of a violin..? Hmmm…  Not sure if that is true, but Cala Violina is a definitely unspoiled cutest little bay you feel like you are detached from the rest of the world. If you are happened to be in Maremma, You shouldn’t miss this little beautiful spot!

IMG_2425Driving through the Sunflower field of Cala Violina. So beautiful!

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IMG_2428I love you Sunflowers!

IMG_2388Access to the beach!  And I am absolutely loving the grand scene of pine bush! So gorgeous!

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IMG_2392You can totally bring your cooler filled with all the goodies but remember you need to walk about 1.5 km to get to the beach from the designated Parking lot to access the beach. There are many picnic tables under the Pine filed once you get to the beach where you can get out from the sun and relax a bit having your lunch. Otherwise, you can also order good sandwiches and salad from the one and only food truck, ” Cala Violina” below!

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IMG_2396Getting closer!

IMG_2399Yeah Baby! Crystal clear water and white sand. Water is amazing!

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IMG_2511The young Italian at Sunset Cafe, Marina di Pisa, Italy

“Aperitivo” in Italy is one loaded  word  which describes layers of Italian culture in only 8 letters.  Relaxed mind, food and socializing. “Happy Hour” wouldn’t quite justify what Aperitivo does. People take time on Aperitivo. Especially the Young Italian. You will go to dinner after but you get to nibble on some real good appetizers.  All the local places will serve nice range of complimentary snacks along your order of drinks. Mostly like in a buffet style. They will serve all sort of things like riso freddo (rice salad), pastas, dips and cheese, olives, fruits, nuts and even cold cuts if you are in better places.  So actually drinks come bit more expensive but you also get great deal of nice nibbles.

But this is not the only reason why Aperitivo works differently from Happy Hour.  I think it’s the mind set. The mentality. Peace in your mind. Aperitivo is a Nice Stylish Break after a long day at work or even all day of playing at the beach if it happens to be the nice hot summer weekend.  You have taken a refreshing shower already and put on a clean outfit after the day of whatever that was and you step out of the house with recharged body and soul. And you are ready to mingle now. A sweet one. You meet up and plan for the dinner or even for the night or whatever next thing is. You catch up sipping on glass of prosecco or delicious cocktails with friends and family. It’s really a nice time. Life feels real good here. There will be good music there some times even the live one.  Any hot new Aperitivo spot is a definitely a good deal to talk about.

Especially when it comes to one just like the ” Sunset Cafe”  in Marina di Pisa!

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IMG_2464A good friend, Alino with Emi catching up at the bar.  Alino is an amazing hair stylist. He did my hair for our wedding!

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IMG_2486A few private areas for gatherings.  They will set up a separate appetizer bar for you.

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A sexy Summer evening at Marina di Pisa.

Do not miss it!

mercatocentrale-pgnCentral Market of Livorno over the main canal of the city, Italy.

The market is open everyday except Sunday and 5 entrances of the market lead you into the main food hall where there are richest greens, meat, dairies, coffee, bread & pastries, pasta an fish that surely inspire you to think about to whip up some delicious dishes! We love going to Mercato Centrale di Livorno right after our usual Italian breakfast ( cappuccino and typical Italian pastries! ) for a fun stroll and a few ideas for our nice and long lunches and dinners for everyday. The market happens inside of the main building that was built back in late 19th century in splendid example of public Art Nouveau style, and also the outside of the building where there are ton of fruit and vegetable vendors in this square called, Piazza Cavalloti.

You can find pretty much everything and anything that Italians do eat daily in the markets! The freshest produce from such simple yet perfectly ripped tomatoes, lush and impressive zucchini flowers to lightly fry up to the perfection, and especially the “Fish and Seafood” is the true highlight of the Livorno market as Livorno is considered as one of the most important top 3 ports in Italy.

Here I like to share mainly the  2 parts of the market as these are our usual biggest interest: Vegetable market in Piazza Cavalloti and the Fish and Seafood section of the indoor market.

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IMG_1638Fiori di Zucca! ( The Zucchini flowers) The simple delicacy of Italy. Everyone prepares it differently. But as Livia, my mother in law always taught me, you do not overdo Zucchinis. They carry this delicate subtle flavor. Our favorite way will be dip it in the simple dry flower then dunk it in the egg wash, fry it up for like 30 seconds and when they are out just sprinkle some salt to taste. That ‘s the best way!  Aren’t those flowers so gorgeous?  There a few different kinds. Take a look at couple pics below.

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IMG_1655White Zucchini flowers. Those long Zucchini as your arm! from Sicily. Yes size of your arms!

IMG_1649Sweet and delicate wild berries from the bush. These berries are small as your baby finger nail.

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IMG_1641Fabulously fat porcinis! Just slice them up and grill them on the low flame with touch of olive oil and salt. Che Buoni!

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IMG_1651This is a kind of green beans. Better than the French beans! Sweeter and more tender.

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IMG_1680Our favorite kind. Vongole Veraci. Yes that Vongole for your linguini with white white and garlic sauce. Yum!

IMG_1689Baccala, Cod.

IMG_1672All the local fish from the mare di Livorno. The kinds like to hang out near the rocky area. Which mean more those thin fish bone but also has more flavor.

IMG_1673Skinned head on whole Gattucci. If you know how to eat fish, you want the head on while you cook it. The simple rule here. More parts of the fish=more flavor.

IMG_1661Here the real Scampi! Peeps, bigger size shrimp is Not scampi. They are two different thing. Scampi is absolutely more angular with spiky and harder shell. The meat is sweeter and juicier than shrimp. And they are more expensive and tastier. Best way to eat? Go CRUDO. Shell it carefully, drizzle of  extra olive oil and squeeze of fresh lemon. No salt is needed as they are well seasoned already from the salt of the ocean itself.

IMG_1674Baby cuttle fish.  You can deep fry, stir fry or pasta sauce it!  Expensive! See it’s 25 Euro for 1 Kg!

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IMG_1663Array of salad, sotto olio ( things sitting in oil), cured with lemon and garlic. Take them home by the weight as usual.

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IMG_1692It’s like sort of salami of octopus.

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IMG_1683An old style coffee bar inside the market. But notice that modern stool!

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IMG_1658More individual fish vendors on trucks parked right outside of the market.

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IMG_1713OK. We are back home now and making a quick lunch for the day!!  Rinse the scampi and drain the water.

IMG_1881First dish. Scampi Crudo with Oilve oil and Lemon.

IMG_1716Gather all the heads of Scampi and quick fire on the sauce pan with tomato, garlic, olive oil, shot of white wine and fresh sage. You can simply suck on the heads or this makes the best pasta sauce. Penne or Spaghetti. The hair on this hand is Emi’s. Ha-ha!

IMG_1717You can cover it on low heat and simmer it like 15 minutes. It’s a killer!

IMG_1715Zigge. Maybe the smallest shellfish on Earth. Size of your thumb nail. Gael’s favorite! Wash them, hot oil with garlic, Italian parsley and fresh black pepper. No salt needed.

IMG_1730When the shell is all open and the color of all comes turns bit more intense , they are ready to it. They are like potato chips of Shellfish. DELICIOUS!! Pop them in!

IMG_1742Gael fooling with Granpa’s mafia glasses while we are cooking!

Buon Apetito!!!

IMG_1750Home sweet Home at Vale Benedetta, Andrea’s garden, Livorno, Italy

We had left for Italy on Gael’s Birthday this time, so auntie Suzy and uncle Andrea were throwing a birthday party for Gael where Andrea lives. Vale Benedettta. A small village where there’s much history of Casarosa’s family as a few generations have lived there and now Emi has a small country home and Emi’s big brother Andrea actually resides right below Emi’s country home daily. Emi and I had married at this small church in Vale Benedetta 12 years ago and I definitely feel like this is a home at heart for the family even though we only get to come up to Vale Benedetta only a few times a year. But I feel the root of the family history here somehow.  As usual it would be either Emi’s or Andrea’s. We rotate 2 homes and we get together time to time with all family and it would be usually lots of home cooked food and enjoying typical Italian style family conversation sitting out in al fresco by peach trees if it was at Emi’s or by a small fish pond if it was at Andrea’s.

It’s so good to be back home with Emi’s family!!  Especially to celebrate Gael’s big 8th birthday together!!!

IMG_1765Andrea’s festive entrance. The man who worked his entire life in the ocean sure chose the right decor. The world’s flags. The typical ones for the yacht clubs and ports. I always enjoy seeing Andrea’s particular love for the ocean in his life.

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IMG_1752Denny So grown up now!

IMG_1779Suzy’s fresh pesto: rucola, cherry tomato, black olives, almond, basil, garlic…. Delicious!

IMG_1797Uncle Giorgio and me!

IMG_1790Andrea and Giorgio working on a grill.

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IMG_1793The familiar running around of Gael in and out of Andrea’s home. The lush pines, the dark green door, warm yellow washed wall of Emi’s home behind. Aaaaahhhh!

IMG_1766Merlino, Denny’s dog but really Giorgio’s I believe. Right, Suzy..? Haha!

IMG_1800As it get’s darker, Andrea’s garden starts get really shinning.  So pretty…

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IMG_1744Suzy holding one of her cake she made for Gael. Delicious. Suzy also had made a Cheese cake with runny chocolate icing on top. Yum!!

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Now watch the family singing!!

IMG_1814Suzy’s gift, The Soccer shoes!!!

IMG_1830Grandpa the director!

IMG_1817Emi, Chiara and Andrea Jr.

IMG_1811Ahhh Happy Gael!

Grazie a tutti per una belissima festa per Gael!!!!!!!!

Ti vogliamo sempre sempre bene!!