This Food Blogger's Going Back To Her Rhody (Italian) Roots For A Recipe You'll Want To Co-Opt

Have you noticed lately that you are faced with either organic grass feed beef with a side of kale or a 5 lb. cheeseburger with layers of mac & cheese, bacon and fries on the side? Do you waiver between being the voice of healthy, clean eating or the person with the coolest Insta feed who has the hottest cardiac explosion? I find myself hovering between the two and yes, my bi-personality enjoys both, but how do I really balance it out day to day?

Recently, I've found my pants too snug and my Italian heartburn (“agida”) happening more than I would like to admit, so I decided to go back to what I always preached and practiced - Clean eating! Listen, not saying I'm an expert on this, just saying I try to eat like my Grandmother would have eaten - real food, unprocessed. She lived until 96 and her mother until 99. So eating pasta 3 times a week cannot be that life threatening.


What I found to be the big culprit? Dressings and sauces. I love both and yes, sometimes they are easier to buy at the market. But, just take a look at what is in the typical salad dressing or pesto. Put that sh%t down and make it yourself! I know it sounds like too much work. It's not. 


I would choose to make one or two a week. Pick a sauce of the week and use it on as many meals as you can.  PLAN…because they will only last 4 to 5 days in the fridge, so slap that sh%t on everything.

Get started with this easy-to-replicate recipe from Lori's kitchen:

Easy Arugula Pesto

What You'll Need/Shopping List

  • 2 cups arugula
  • 3 gloves garlic
  • 1 cup basil
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tablespoon pine nuts (optional)
  • ½ teaspoon salt and pepper

Place all ingredients in food processor and mix until smooth. If the pesto is to dry, add one to two extra tablespoons of olive oil and blend until smooth. 

More About Lori

Lori is a visual artist, cook, and food stylist. She is a native of Rhode Island who now lives in NYC and travels the world in search of food adventures. She launched her website to share her healthy, clean and easy recipes and cooking with real ingredients, the way her grandmother always did. Follow Lori on Instagram @gizznyc for inspiration and more creative food ideas.

Photo Credits: Additional photos courtesy of Lori Gizz

*This post has been updated and revised from the original version that appeared on the site in 2017.