Archives for May 2024

Spectacular Firework Show and Full Day of Entertainment at The Queen Mary in Long Beach for an All-American 4th of July Celebration  

Photo Credit: The Queen Mary

Let freedom ring and celebrate an all-American 4th of July aboard the majestic Queen Mary with a full day of live entertainment, family-friendly activities, delicious food, games, dancing, a WWII aircraft flyover and more on Thursday, July 4 from 3 – 10 p.m. The red, white and blue celebration is a ship-wide event, culminating with one of SoCal’s top 4th of July fireworks displays above one of America’s “shining seas.”

“As we commemorate Independence Day, we are thrilled to invite families and friends aboard the Queen Mary for a day filled with joy, entertainment, and patriotism,” said Steve Caloca, Managing Director of the Queen Mary. “Our aim is to create unforgettable memories and a sense of community as we honor this important day in our nation’s history. I am particularly excited for the fireworks show, which will be synced to music for a truly special moment.”

Independence Day revelers will voyage throughout the Queen Mary’s many decks, ballrooms, and salons for a day of multiple celebrations with live music performances, DJs, line dancing, strolling performers, dancers, and more! In the Grand Salon, five-piece country band Kelly Rae will have everyone kick-ing up their boots for some country fun with live music and line dancing. Stroll into the Queen’s Salon for performances by Swing Cats Lil Big Band Ft. Swing Kittens, Hollywood Hotshots, and join in the fun with swing dance lessons. Put your singing skills to the test with Rock Heroes Video Karaoke in the Royal Salon, or head to the Observation Bar for some toe tapping good tunes by the Jazz Trio. 

Grab the kids and be greeted by a full afternoon of fun on the Promenade Deck with strolling performers and family-friendly fun with jugglers, magicians, balloon twisters, face painters and performances by the Barbershop Quartet. The Sports Deck will be jam-packed with kids activities and games like water balloon toss, limbo, corn hole, and more.

Above the Queen Mary, attendees will be treated to a spectacular air-show by the Flight Team of John Collver, professional pilot, and Brad Lang, professional pilot and airline captain. Together the two will demonstrate the sights and sounds of past generations in salute to Independence Day in the WWll era Marine Corps T-6 Texans.

As the sun sets, experience SoCal’s most spectacular fireworks show, lighting up the night sky for 15-minutes with vibrant colors and paired to themed music. Dubbed Southern California’s top 4th of July fireworks display, the breathtaking fireworks show will culminate the red, white, and blue festivities at 9 p.m. off the stern of the ship in sync to patriotic music.

VIP ticket holders will have access to premium firework viewing on the Vista Deck and two exclusive VIP-only parties in the Verandah Grill and Britannia Salon. Dance the night away while enjoying the funky sounds of Indie Rock band Miguel the Band in the Britannia Salon and the Verandah Grill will invite VIP guests to a shaded area with exclusive bar and lounge. 

The Queen Mary’s All-American 4th of July Celebration runs from 3 p.m. – 10 p.m. Tickets start at $35 online for children and $55 online per adult. The VIP admission is $125 for ages 4+ and includes additional access to Verandah Grill, Britannia Salon, and premium firework viewing. Hotel and cabana packages are also available. Cabanas are available for reservation and will grant access to the Capstan Deck.

For more information on the Queen Mary visit http://queenmary.com, or connect with us on social @TheQueenMary.

Credit: The Queen Mary.

Weighted Teddy Bears Heal Broken Hearts

 There’s a non-profit called The Comfort Cub and it is a weighted teddy bear that has been healing Broken Heart Syndrome for mothers, fathers, siblings, doctors, teachers and children for 25 years. The weight of the bear is scientifically proven to soothe Takotsubo Cardiomyopathy, or better known as, Broken Heart Syndrome. People experience Broken Heart Syndrome when they go through severe loss, trauma, and grief. It can be deadly. The Comfort Cub could really be helpful!

The Comfort Cub was founded by Marcella Johnson 25 years ago. Marcella’s journey began with a personal tragedy when she lost her baby boy, George, shortly after his birth. Overwhelmed by grief, Marcella experienced excruciating heartache, which was later diagnosed as Broken Heart Syndrome. She was determined to find relief and healing. Marcella discovered that when she picked up a weighted object her heart attack-like pain slowed way down and her excruciating arm pain was soothed (the arm pain was from not holding her newborn in her arms, since her body had been preparing to hold a baby for nine months, and then she wasn’ts holding him).  She thought she looked silly carrying potted plants around so she quickly put a weight inside one of her other child’s stuffed animals and carried that around. She was shocked at how much better she felt. 

She knew other moms who were grieving could also benefit from a weighted animal to soothe their grief and trauma after losing a baby or even any loved one. Then she created The Comfort Cub and started stocking hospitals and maternity wings with them, giving them away to moms everywhere who lost a baby. But then she noticed more people, who were not only mothers but other family members experiencing loss and grief wanted one too. Even frontline healthcare workers during the height of COVID-19 requested Comfort Cubs, knowing the comfort they brought to patients at the hospitals who lost loved ones. It was helping them sleep better at night. These weighted bears not only alleviate physical symptoms but also trigger the release of serotonin and dopamine, effectively soothing the pain and reducing the enlarged heart valve associated with Broken Heart Syndrome.

What started as a personal remedy soon blossomed into a mission to extend comfort and support to others facing similar hardships. The Comfort Cub has since been distributed to individuals experiencing various forms of loss and trauma, from parents mourning the loss of a child, victims of domestic violence, frontline healthcare workers battling during the pandemic, and survivors of gun violence. (June is Gun Violence Awareness Month, so The Comfort Cub would be an important story to bring up next month too to help those families looking for support. 

I received one to feature in this post and thought that I would give it to a young mom who recently experienced domestic violence. She has expressed to me how comforting this weighted teddy bear is and it has also been so helpful with her daughter who also experienced trauma.

Please check out the website and this non-profit is also in need of donations. The reach of The Comfort Cub is only limited by the resources available. While the organization remains committed to donating these bears to those in need, financial support is crucial to sustain and expand their efforts. The Comfort Cub is really something special!

Self Disclosure: I received a free sample to facilitate this post. Images were also provided.

Princess Halle and the Jester * Wow, But Wow! This Is Not A “Once Upon A Time” Movie

When goblins attack and capture the king, a young princess and a poor jester must avenge her father and battler the evil stepmother who has taken over the throne. This film uses cutting edge technology can make a new IP with real humans and in a sustainable way. The feature-length film is the first in a planned trilogy and uses breakthrough technologies to meld action, romance, and fairytales into a completely new and unique world that is both modern and timeless. The extensive, photorealistic digital world immerses the viewer in a hyper real experience with cutting-edge virtual sets, procedural AI, CGI creatures, and digital doubles.

Ryan M. comments, “Wow, but wow! Princess Halle and the Jester is such an interesting film – with all the CGI. It is so interesting and funny with lots of dramatic action. It has everything you can think of in a film and it is not a “once upon a time” movie. It’s action royal – a kind of movie I just love.” Eshaan M. adds, “The plot of Princess Halle and the Jester really makes it stand out from any other action/fantasy film. It’s somewhere between Lord of the Rings and a kids’ show like Sophia the First. Halle’s character is well built out, and we see her evolve and mature mentally and emotionally throughout the film.” See their full reviews below.

Princess Halle and The Jester

By Ryan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic. Age 10


Wow, but wow! Princess Halle and the Jester is such an interesting film – with all the CGI. It is so interesting and funny with lots of dramatic action. It has everything you can think of in a film and it is not a “once upon a time” movie. It’s action royal – a kind of movie I just love. This movie tells you all about fairy tales. It doesn’t have to end with a royal wedding. This movie ends unlike any royal fairy tale movie.


The storyline follows a kingdom that is attacked by an army of goblins and their king (Byron Herlong) is kidnapped and turned into stone. The young princess Halle (Emma Duchesneau) runs away with the jester Henri (Duncan Novak) and he brings her to his hometown. Afterwards she wants to return but the guards take her away and then kill Henri’s grandpa (Geoffrey Lyons). Together they fight the evil goblin queen, Priscilla (Rachel Stacy).


The film’s CGI is so good, especially how the dragon looks. It begins as cute, small and harmless, and then they make it big and ready to fly across the world. The animator deserves a lot of credit for his work which is very good. The costume makes Henri look like a villager and the dress for the princess makes her look royal – the necklace looks like an actual gem. The hair and makeup artist (Justine Sylvie) outdid herself, making the princess’s hair look very regal. The lead animator (Kieth Lee) gives the dragon very bright colors, but it still looks realistic. I just love this film. It has a royal fairy tale movie genre and its executed so well. There is one thing that bugged me –  when they are fighting the goblin queen, the princess Halle hits a wall and falls in pain, but there was no sound. That is weird.


The message is that not all fairy tales end with a happy royal marriage like in this film. 


I give Princess Halle and the Jester 4.4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 12, plus adults. Princess Halle and the Jester releases on VOD and streaming on May 21, 2024. 

Princess Halle and The Jester

By Eshaan M., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 18

Perfect for fans of fantasy, Princess Halle and The Jester tells an elaborate and exquisite tale replete with action, drama and unconventional twists. It’s a good watch despite stilted scriptwriting and performances, and some rough CGI. 


The film follows Princess Halle (Emma Duchesneau), a teen royal reeling from the loss of her mother. At the coronation of her stepmother Queen Priscilla (Rachel Stacy), the new queen, goblins attack the castle and capture Halle’s father King Victor (Byron Herlong), taking him to a faraway land. She must save her father and restore balance to the kingdom while also fighting her stepmother’s allegations that she conspired with the goblins to steal her father’s throne. 


The plot of Princess Halle and the Jester really makes it stand out from any other action/fantasy film. It’s somewhere between Lord of the Rings and a kids’ show like Sophia the First. Halle’s character is well built out, and we see her evolve and mature mentally and emotionally throughout the film. I also love the jester, Henri (Duncan Novak), who acts as Halle’s sidekick; he was given such a positive and supportive role, and he plays it with conviction. There are some instances where Princess Halle and the Jester is let down by its budget. The CGI looks antiquated and basic. In many scenes – one where a dragon takes King Victor away and another where the characters pass through otherworldly groves and forests – the heavy usage of green screens and artificial graphics is evident. The backgrounds and characters are roughly rendered, and you can see the individual frames of some of the motion animations. Other technical elements could have been refined, too. The camerawork is awkward at times, with diagonal panning and some untimely cuts. But the film is lifted by performances by the supporting cast, who give it their all, and a well-written script. The dialogue writing is nicely done; it’s crafted more like a work of theater than a film in some parts, which makes sense, since the action can be broken up into three acts, like a stage play. Justine Sylvie aces the costumes and hair and makeup, one element of the film I really love. 


Princess Halle and the Jester promotes fighting for justice and preserving your internal sense of goodness and kindness.


I give Princess Halle and the Jester 3 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 12. The film releases on May 21, 2024 on demand and on Apple and Amazon streaming.

Trailer:

It’s Time for the Spring Baby Roundup!

sooo cute!

Silicone Bibs from KeaBabies in Pastel Sky

The functional Silicone Bibs from KeaBabies are perfect for little ones this Easter. Thoughtfully designed and tested, the BPA-free food grade silicone bibs comes with an adjustable neckline, stays straight on your child’s chest even with lots of movement, and boasts the widest food catcher opening to prevent accidental spills and stains. Easy to wipe clean after meals and snacks, too! Available in Mellow and Pastel Sky which are perfect for Spring, as well as 12 additional color variations for everyday use.  https://keababies.com/ (Lightweight Baby Silicone Bib – BPA Free | KeaBabies)

Monkey Caddy Launches Revolutionary Diaper-Changing
Solution for New Parents

 

 Monkey Caddy, the latest innovation in baby care, officially launches on Amazon today. It is the ultimate organization and storage solution for diaper changing with a groundbreaking design to make diaper changes easier and more organized. Developed with the needs of new parents in mind, Monkey Caddy is a versatile and customizable organizer that attaches to the changing table tray to ensure that all essential changing supplies are within arm’s reach.

The patented design of Monkey Caddy features adjustable attachments to fit almost any changing table tray; customizable interior dividers to allow for multiple compartment configurations in the main storage area; a pull-out table, exterior pockets; elastic holders for items like combs and thermometers; and hooks to hold bath towels and onesies. This multi-functional product is tailored to fit the unique demands of parenting, providing a clutter-free, efficient organization system for nurseries and small living spaces.

“Monkey Caddy was born out of necessity,” said Christina Mandich, Monkey Caddy founder. “My daughter’s changing table didn’t have a place to hold diapers, wipes and other baby changing essentials within arm’s reach. I couldn’t be the only parent trying to hold my baby on the changing pad while fumbling to get the supplies I needed. Our mission is to make the baby changing experience as easy as possible for new parents, so they can focus on the joys of parenthood.”

Key benefits of the Monkey Caddy include its multiple organization design elements creating space efficiency and cost efficiency as compared to alternative storage options. It attaches easily to most changing tables and can collapse for convenient storage or transport. Designed for durability and longevity, Monkey Caddy is an innovation that offers long-term value for families.

Monkey Caddy is more than just a storage solution; it is a statement of how innovative design can simplify everyday tasks, making it an indispensable tool for new parents. This truly is a must-have!

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About Monkey Caddy

Monkey Caddy is a pioneering baby care brand providing the ultimate organization and storage solution for diaper changing. With a focus on organization, convenience, and simplicity, the Monkey Caddy is designed to make changing diapers a breeze for parents and caregivers.

The Jet

Jet is a game-changer for mealtimes with babies and toddlers! With its innovative dispenser feature, you can effortlessly administer medicine, nourishing formula, or delicious baby food purees. No more struggling or messy spills – Jet ensures every drop reaches your baby’s lips. Jet boasts several key features, including all-in-one functionality, easy medication delivery, mess-free feeding, soothing teething relief, and easy to grasp design. In addition, Jet’s teether component is designed with raised surfaces, providing tactile stimulation to babies’ gums and encouraging exploration and sensory development. I love how easy this is to use and it truly is an item that all new Moms and Dads need!

For more information about Jet and The Clever Baby, please visit www.thecleverbaby.com

Self Disclosure: I received free samples to feature in this seasonal post. Images and info were also provided.

Books of the Week- May 28th, 2024

on-sale: 5/28/24

 CLOUD PUPPY by Kelly Leigh Miller

Narwhal and Jelly meets The Amazing World of Gumball in this first book in a delightful graphic novel chapter book series about Cloud Puppy—part puppy, part cloud, and all adorable—and her forays into friendship, adventure, and all things geeky!

Meet Cloud Puppy! Her hobbies include making rainbows, super sniffing, and, of course, reading the Pretty Princess Warrior Dragonetta series with her best friend, Berry Rose. After Cloud Puppy finds out that her favorite author will be a guest at the local comic book convention, she and Berry Rose decide to attend in homemade costumes.

But when they both insist on dressing up as the same character, Cloud Puppy and Berry Rose have their first fight ever! Now, they’re going to the convention separately. Will these feuding friends be able to make amends?

This book is perfect for early and reluctant readers, as graphic chapter books really hit that perfect sweet spot making it fun to read. The approachable text, and bright illustrations in Cloud Puppy help readers build on their skills and confidence while having a good laugh. It will be a great summer read for early readers! It is so much fun to read!

TELL ME ABOUT OCEANS
By Lisa Varchol PerronIllustrated by Jennifer FalknerPublisher: Little Simon.
Length: 22 pages
ISBN13: 9781665935593
Grades: P and up
A child gets answers to their many questions about the ocean in this rhyming, fact-filled nonfiction board book perfect for curious minds. I’m a big ocean lover and I really enjoyed reading this book with a 4-year-old girl that I babysit.

HUSH, LITTLE DOZER
By Rebecca ColbyIllustrated by Katya Longhi Publisher: Little Simon.
Length: 26 pages
ISBN13: 9781665934022
Grades: P and up
Say goodnight to each construction vehicle as it completes its last task of the day—especially to little dozer—in this sweet board book that puts a new spin on “Hush, Little Baby.” This is such a sweet bedtime story for little ones!

 THE CITY BEYOND THE STARS by  Zohra Nabi.

Yara may have stopped the magical plague spreading its way through her new home, but to do so, she had to leave her mother in the hands of the sinister alchemists.

Now Yara longs to return to Zehaira and free her mother from her prison. Yet when her mother’s familiar arrives, close to death and bearing a message, Yara must put aside her plans to rescue her and instead set off with her friends to the official residence of the Grand High Sorceress, convinced it holds magic powerful enough to defeat the alchemists.

After a treacherous journey, Yara finds her mother’s house, and in it, a girl claiming to be the daughter of the Grand High Sorceress—a sister Yara didn’t know she had. Meanwhile, the alchemists are circling ever closer, and the magic that Yara’s mother was working threatens the foundations of their world.

Yara is unsure if her newfound sister can be trusted, but she is going to need all the help she can get if she wants to save their mother and take back Zehaira from the alchemists’ rule.

A entertaining summer read for the little older kids!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Zohra Nabi grew up inventing stories for her two younger sisters. She studied law at Cambridge and Oxford universities, but secretly dreamed of being an author. Now she lives in London, browsing bookshops and writing magical adventures. She’s the author of The Kingdom Over the Sea series. 

Self Disclosure: I received free copies of the above books to feature. Cover images were also provided.

The Best Flowers for a Winter Wedding

When planning a winter wedding, choosing the right flowers is key to setting the perfect seasonal ambience. Winter weddings call for flowers that can withstand the cooler temperatures while still looking fresh and beautiful. Here are some of the best flowers to consider for a winter wedding.

White Roses

No flower says classic wedding quite like white roses. Their elegant ruffled blooms work beautifully for winter weddings. Go for varieties like Avalanche or Polar Star that feature large, full flower heads which will hold up well in winter. Use white roses for bridal bouquets, centrepieces and altar arrangements. Mix with greenery like eucalyptus or silver dollar eucalyptus which complement the white flowers.

Amaryllis

Amaryllis features large, stunning blooms that really pop against winter backdrops. These trumpet-shaped flowers come in white, pastels and rich jewel tones like deep red or purple which add gorgeous colour to weddings. Use amaryllis for dramatic bridal bouquets, centrepieces and decor. Varieties like Picotee offer white petals with bold red stripes for stylish flair. The tall blooms of amaryllis make perfect altar arrangements.

Hydrangeas

Big, voluminous hydrangea blooms give arrangements a lovely romantic look perfect for weddings. Opt for hardy varieties that bloom in winter like Endless Summer or Everlasting Hydrangeas. Creamy white hydrangeas suit winter weddings. For added colour, find hydrangeas in shades of blush pink, burgundy and deep green. Use mophead hydrangeas for altar arrangements in urns or weave into ceremony chair decor.

Ranunculus

With layers of delicate, ruffled petals, ranunculus add gorgeous texture and movement to arrangements. These beauties come in white, cream, pink, burgundy and many other winter-suited shades. Ranunculus look lovely in bridal bouquets, especially when mixed with roses. The blooms also make pretty posy table centerpieces. Choose ranunculus varieties like Amanda, Espresso or Royal Wedding which thrive in cooler weather.

Seeded Eucalyptus

Seeded eucalyptus is a must for adding greenery to winter wedding flowers. Its round, silvery green foliage provides the perfect complement to soft white blooms. Seeded eucalyptus is hardy and holds up well out of water. Use it to create fragrant, lush bouquets, centerpieces and garlands. Try combining it with white roses, dusty miller, olive branches or flocked pine sprigs.

Dahlia

Though summer blooming, dahlias can also thrive in winter with the right varieties. Choose options like Cafe Au Lait, Velvet Rose and Rhubarb and Custard that bloom into fall and early winter. Dahlias come in stunning colours from pure white to blush, lavender, red and plum. Use these pom-pom shaped beauties to add texture and flair to altar arrangements and centerpieces. Mix with roses, ranunculus and succulents.

Freckle Face

An exotic option, Freckle Face features dramatic, speckled blooms in shades of purple, pink and cream. They resemble orchids with their spotted centres and ruffled petals. Make a statement by carrying Freckle Face in your bridal bouquet from a luxury wedding florist like Corky and Prince or use their striking blooms to decorate the aisle ends. Freckle Face looks exquisite when paired with roses.

Anemones

Resembling wildflowers, anemones are a delicate winter flower with paper-thin petals. White and cream anemones with dark centres suit winter weddings. Use them sparingly in bridal bouquets and centrepieces to create a whimsical feel. Try pairing anemones with ranunculus and foliage like ivy vines.

When it comes to choosing flowers, focus on finding options that bloom in the winter months and suit the colour scheme of your wedding. Talk to your florist to determine which varieties will be in season. With an abundance of hearty, beautiful flowers available, you can create gorgeous winter wedding arrangements.

3 Reasons Why Medical Labels Play a Vital Role in Healthcare

The world of healthcare is complex at first glance. But with clear communication, a lot of essential information makes sense. That is why the use of medical labels was created to ease the burden, both on professionals and their patients.

1. Patient Safety

Since patient safety is a priority in healthcare, the industry has leaned on tools like Medical Labels. Unclear labeling is the primary cause of adverse drug reaction and medication errors. Additionally, incorrect labeling can lead to preventable life-threatening situations that puts stress on everyone involved. It is a minor thing, but a label is always the center of world changing consequences.

The best summary of a medical label is that it provides information about the dosage, contents and administration of medications. All of this is tied to the actual instructions of how the medication should be taken by a specific patient. None of this information is generic, so instructions for one individual will be completely different from another. Not following the information on a medical label can lead to situations like an overdose or a reaction to an allergen.

Traceability is possible with a medical label, and has been essential with recalls and treating adverse reactions to the medication. Details like expiration dates, batch numbers and manufacturers details speed up the entire process. Once a problem is identified, professionals are quick to a resolution before it becomes a widespread health issue.

2. Accurate Treatment

Accurate treatment is the result of precise information – the best way to guarantee this is with the data from medical labels. Clear dosage instructions are an expectation for a positive therapeutic outcome. All of the data is doublechecked for accuracy long before it is printed on the label. When the treatment is complex, clear labeling is the driving force behind ensuring that every component is used correctly. This becomes a big deal when drugs need to be taken in a specific sequence. Small changes to the way drugs are used will have an adverse effect on the optimization of the current treatment plan.

3. Healthcare Efficiency

Managing the inventories of medications is no small task. A lot of training and resources go into maintaining the integrity of the health industry. Without the help of labels, streamlining inventory management becomes a herculean effort. Small things like a date can get lost in the shuffle of other essential items.

Although communication is the norm, regulatory compliance has helped to speed up the prominence of medical labels in the healthcare industry. Facilities always comply with the current regulatory standards of organizations like the WHO and FDA. Just like medical labels, these modern rules were made to keep everyone on the same page about protecting patients within the healthcare system.

An Invaluable Tool

As patient outcomes improve, the popularity of medical labels continues to rise. The best way to ensure patient safety and healthcare efficiency is with the use of this tool. All of the information is clear, detailed and can prevent some of the most common errors in the industry.

Ticket to Ride™: The Official Cookbook

Set out on a culinary journey through North America with Ticket to Ride: The Official Cookbook [ISBN: 978-1-64604-497-9; $29.95; Ulysses Press; April 2024]. Based on Alan R. Moon’s iconic board game, Ticket to Ride: The Official Cookbook offers dining car menus inspired by your favorite destinations throughout the United States and Canada.

Those who love Ticket to Ride know that each game is new and exciting, an opportunity to not just connect cities and routes, but to connect with friends and family. So, while you’re out exploring the map, cutting off your fellow continent-trotters’ routes, collecting tickets, and racing to travel through as many cities as possible, take that full-steam-ahead wanderlust to another level via these can’t-lose snacks, desserts, meals, and drinks.

The 75+ recipes are organized by the Destination Tickets you know and love from the core Ticket to Ride game, featuring unique dining-car menus inspired by the cities through which you travel. Each of the 15 routes includes an appetizer, a side dish, a main course, a dessert, and a cocktail (with or without alcohol)—all with deliciously strong ties to destination cities. Inside you’ll find easy-to-follow recipes and full-color photos for local favorites, regional desserts, and cocktails, including:

  • New England Clam Chowder (Boston, Massachusetts)
  • Hot Chicken (Nashville, Tennessee)
  • Poutine (Montreal, Canada)
  • Possum Pie (Little Rock, Arkansas)
  • Half-Smoke Sausage Bites (Washington, DC)
  • Cheesecake (New York, New York)
  • Mai Tai (San Francisco, California)
  • And much more!

I love the Baja Fish Tacos recipe! They are delicious!

yummy!

Excerpted from Ticket to Ride™: The Official Cookbook. Copyright © 2024 Ulysses Press. Reprinted with permission from Ulysses Press. New York, NY. All rights reserved.

Baja Fish Tacos

Bring the beach to wherever you’re gaming with these Baja Fish Tacos. Crunchy and tasty, they pack a major flavor punch with a super-creamy sauce and just the right amount of heat. This recipe uses halibut, which swim all along the California coast and down through Baja, but really, you can use any mild white fish.

Makes: 6 tacos

Active time: 30 minutes

Total time: 1 hour 30 minutes

1/4 red cabbage, thinly sliced (about 1 1/2 cups)

4 limes, divided

kosher salt, to taste

1/2 cup Mexican crema or sour cream

1 egg

1 cup lager beer

1/2 teaspoon chipotle chili powder

freshly ground pepper, to taste

1 tablespoon honey or agave nectar

1 cup flour

vegetable oil, for frying

1 1/4 pounds skinless halibut fillet, cut into 2-inch strips

6 flour tortillas

1 avocado

1/2 cup salsa verde

1 cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro

1. In a small bowl, mix the sliced cabbage with the zest and juice of 1 lime and a sprinkle of kosher salt until the cabbage is covered with the liquid. Cover and put in the refrigerator for at least an hour but up to 4. Drain the pickled cabbage before serving.

2. In another small bowl, mix the crema with the zest and juice of 1 lime. Slice the remaining two limes into wedges.

3. Mix the batter by whisking the egg, beer, chipotle chili powder, salt, pepper, and agave in a large shallow bowl. Once combined, add the flour and whisk until smooth.

4. In a medium pot, heat approximately 4 inches of vegetable oil over medium heat until a deep-fry thermometer registers 375°F. Dip the fish in the batter, then fry in batches in the hot

oil until golden and just cooked through, 3 to 5 minutes per batch. Transfer with a slotted spoon to a paper-towel-lined plate to drain. Season with more salt.

5. Toast each tortilla quickly in a skillet over medium-high heat until slightly charred but still flexible.

6. Halve, pit, and slice the avocado. Fill the tortillas with the fish, avocado slices, pickled cabbage, and salsa verde. Drizzle with Mexican crema, top with cilantro, and serve with lime wedges.

SALSA VERDE

2 serrano or jalapeño chiles, stemmed

6 cloves garlic, peeled

8 tomatillos, skins removed

1 yellow onion, roughly chopped zest and juice of 1 lime

2 teaspoons salt

For the salsa verde, cut the chiles in half lengthwise and place them on a foil-lined baking sheet along with the 6 garlic cloves, the tomatillos, and 1 chopped onion. Broil on high until slightly charred, about 5 to 7 minutes, turning once halfway through.

Transfer the charred vegetables to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let steam for 10 minutes. Then use a mortar and pestle or food processor to roughly chop them. Return to the bowl and stir in the lime zest and juice and the 2 teaspoons salt. Let rest in the refrigerator to allow the flavors to meld until ready to serve, about 45 minutes.

Self Disclosure: I received a free copy of the book to facilitate this post. Info, images, and the recipe were provided.