brilliant - vegetarian recipes

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brilliant vegetarian recipes

Watermelon & Halloumi Salad with Magic Sauce

August 9 2017 Green Kitchen Stories 

Watermelon & Halloumi Salad with Magic Sauce Hello! This is David & Luise. Remember us? During our almost eight years of blogging we have never left it silent for two months before. We’re going to do what we always do in these situations and blame the kids. Wether we miss a dentist appointment, forget to answer a text message, get a parking ticket or are two months late with a blog post, it’s always our kid’s fault. In this case however it’s actually somewhat true. We simply underestimated how much time and attention three kids on summer holiday takes. They have sooo much energy. I (David) have been thinking of ways to connect them (and with them I mean Isac) to the power grid so that they (he) could replace a nuclear power plant or two. And I could perhaps cash in a Nobel price for saving the world. Anyway, after a couple of weeks of feeling bad about not having a single second over to blog new recipes, we instead decided to give ourselves a summer break from it all. So we have been trying to keep up with our children’s pace (obviously impossible) and play on their rules (also impossible because they ignore rules) this summer. It’s been fun and much needed. But we are here now with plenty of new recipe ideas and projects. Lots of other things have happened during the summer. We almost bought ourselves a tiny smoothie bar in a park, we burnt pancakes from Green Kitchen at Home inside a jam-packed little book store in Bath and we have planned the release of the European languages next month, but we’ll find time to talk more about all that. For now, let’s just talk food. Before the summer and watermelon season is all over. This recipe has been going on repeat all summer. It’s actually a combination of two recipes which we recently realized work brilliantly together. A simple watermelon and halloumi salad and our Magic Green Sauce. We first got the idea to combine watermelon with halloumi from a recipe photo in a supermarket pamflett and from that combo, we’ve added some chickpeas, cherry toms and pumpkin seeds to make it less of a side and more of a meal. It’s a really nice combination. Rich and chewy halloumi, sweet and fresh watermelon, crunchy pumpkin seeds and a tangy, flavorful and slightly spicy sauce. If I wasn’t such a humble guy, I would say that it’s probably one of the best watermelon salads you’ll try this summer. Luckily, I’m super humble and will just say that it’s pretty good. A simple vegan option would be to replace the halloumi with marinated tofu. Just make sure to squeeze out the liquid before marinating it, so it soaks up all the flavor. Quinoa, black lentils or rice could also be a great addition if you want to make this salad more substantial. Here is a little salad assembling action by Luise. Technically, the Magic Green Sauce is just our take on Chimichuri with a more hippie name. We use lime juice instead of vinegar and have added a little avocado to give it the right balance between creamy and chunky and also a few drips maple syrup to round off the sharpness from the other flavors. The magic lies in its ability to transfer any simple dish into something flavorful. Apart from this salad, we also use it on scrambled eggs, as a dip for raw crudités, inside rye sandwiches and on top of shakshuka. We have made it with a number of different herb combinations and found that anything goes (but parsley, cilantro/­­coriander and mint is still a fav). Watermelon & Halloumi Salad with Magic Green Sauce Serves 4 Watermelon & Halloumi Salad 1 kg /­­ 2 lb watermelon 200 g /­­ 7 oz halloumi 150 g /­­ 1 cup good quality cherry tomatoes  1 can /­­ 200 g /­­ 1 cup cooked chickpeas  60 g /­­ 1/­­2 cup pumpkin seeds /­­ pepitas 2 large handfuls Mâche lettuce (or any tender lettuce) 2 tbsp olive oil 1 lime Salt Magic Green Sauce 1 large handful (30 g /­­ 1 tightly packed cup) mixed fresh herbs (we used parsley, cilantro and mint) 1/­­2 cup /­­ 120 ml olive oil Juice from 1 lime 1 tbsp capers 1 tsp maple syrup 1 clove garlic 1 small chili 1/­­2 avocado 1/­­2 tsp sea salt flakes Start by preparing the sauce. Add all sauce ingredients to a food processor and pulse a few times until coarsely mixed, check the flavor and consistency and add more salt, herbs or oil if needed. If you don’t have a food processor, finely chops herbs, capers, garlic and chili, mash the avocado and mix everything in a bowl together with olive oil, lime juice and maple syrup. Add salt to taste. Then set aside. Dice the watermelon and halloumi, quarter the tomatoes and rinse the chickpeas. Toast the pumpkin seeds on medium heat in a dry pan with a little salt until they begin to pop, then transfer them to a chopping board and chop coarsely. Add a little oil to the pan and fry the halloumi for a couple of minutes until golden on all sides. Arrange the lettuce in a bowl or on a serving platter. Add chickpeas, tomatoes, watermelon and halloumi. Squeeze over a little lime juice and drizzle with oil and toss until mixed. Top with pumpkin seeds and Magic Green Sauce, with extra in the side. Enjoy! ***************** PS! We are off to Rome now to celebrate that it was 10 years ago that my drunk feet tried to seduce dance Luise on a club by the Tiber while simultaneously using ALL my Italian pick up lines on her (took me approx 1 hour before I realized that she was Danish and not Italian!). We’re bringing all the kids this time and we’d really appreciate a comment if you know any good places to eat, fun playgrounds, outdoor pools or your favorite gelato bars. Grazie!

An Easy Way to Reduce Plastic in the Bathroom…

July 18 2017 Vegie Head 

How are you tracking with your #plasticfreejuly?! Last year was a brilliant success and many of you loved the tips found in these blogs here and here. However one thing many people have struggled with is one of the simplest things that we all need, and use, multiple times a day. No matter where you ... The post An Easy Way to Reduce Plastic in the Bathroom… appeared first on Vegie Head.

Frozen Chocolate Banana Ice Cream Swirl

June 20 2017 VegKitchen 

Frozen Chocolate Banana Ice Cream Swirl When summer delivers ice cream weather, we turn to this brilliant three-ingredient recipe: chocolate banana ice cream -- naturally vegan and low-fat. Just cut up the bananas, freeze and swirl with your favorite flavors. We have some real chocoholics under our roof, but you could use anything--frozen strawberries, blueberries or a little vanilla extract. Bonus […] The post Frozen Chocolate Banana Ice Cream Swirl appeared first on VegKitchen.

Coffee Chocolate Protein Cookies

June 16 2017 Vegie Head 

Sometimes you just need a mid-afternoon pick-me-up! These cookies are brilliant for snacks on the go, and are easy to add into your meal prep for the week. I used Clean Lean Protein powder from NuZest in their delicious coffee flavour! It’s made of Golden Pea Protein, is smooth and not overly ... The post Coffee Chocolate Protein Cookies appeared first on Vegie Head.

Maya Kaimal Indian Simmer Sauces & More

February 9 2017 VegKitchen 

Maya Kaimal Indian Simmer Sauces & More I can whip up decent Asian-style dishes, but I never got the hang of making authentic-flavored Indian dishes at home. Its not all that difficult, as demonstrated by the brilliant

Hibiscus Ginger Latte

January 29 2017 Golubka Kitchen 

Hibiscus Ginger Latte Hibiscus is a powerful tropical flower with a long list of health benefits (anti-inflammatory, digestive aid, metabolism-boosting, helps with cholesterol level and blood pressure maintenance). It also happens to produce the most brilliant, ruby red-colored tea with a prominent tart flavor. I’ve always found pure hibiscus tea to be a little too sour for my taste, but came up with this latte in a recent attempt to get more of its stunning color into my morning routine, and now I’m completely hooked. The creaminess of the almond milk helps offset the harshness of the hibiscus, and the ginger adds a nice note of warmth and complexity, making this latte a great winter drink. The green tea is optional here, but a great addition when you need a little help waking up in the morning or as a mid-afternoon boost. And I swear I feel like I’m getting color therapy when drinking this latte – the fluffy, pink foam is so soothing to look at, I’m in a complete state of peace by the time I’ve taken my last sip. We have some weekend links for you after the jump, have a great Sunday :) - The Cookbook Deal – I’ve been so excited for this podcast, in which Jessica Murnane documents a whole year of her life while making her first cookbook. I loved the first two episodes, and although that might have something to do with the fact that I’ve now gone through the book-making process twice, I think anyone can enjoy it because Jessica is such a great and charming storyteller. And if you are thinking of writing a cookbook, you should definitely give this one a listen. - This Hibiscus Mask from S.W. Basics - Andrea Gentl’s Photo Essay From Her Time in the Andes – breathtaking - Feedback, NY, Down the Aisle – interesting people interviewed about their grocery shopping routines. So far I’ve enjoyed interviews with Julia Turshen, Hannah and Landon Metz, Kenny Anderson. - The Matriarch Behind Beyoncé and Solange - On The Rocks – crystals explained on Garance Doré Hibiscus Ginger Latte   Print Serves: 2 Ingredients 1 tablespoon dried hibiscus flowers 1 piece ginger - shredded 1 green tea bag 1½ cups hot water 1½ cup unsweetened almond milk or other milk of choice 1 tablespoon honey/­­any other sweetener of choice, or to taste (optional) Instructions Combine hibiscus, ginger, green tea and water in a teapot or a large mug, keep covered while steeping. Remove the green tea bag after 2-4 minutes of steeping. Let the hibiscus steep for another 15-20 minutes. Warm up the milk if you prefer a hot latte. Pour the tea into a blender through a strainer. Add the milk and honey to the blender and blend until frothy and smooth. This latte also tastes great iced. 3.5.3226 You might also like... Elderflower Lemonade Black Sesame Cappuccino Spiced Hot Chocolate and a Cookbook of Our Own Quick Persimmon Eggnog .yuzo_­related_­post .relatedthumb { background: !important; -webkit-transition: background 0.2s linear; -moz-transition: background 0.2s linear; -o-transition: background 0.2s linear; transition: background 0.2s linear;;color:!important; } .yuzo_­related_­post .relatedthumb:hover{background:#ffffff !important;color:!important;} .yuzo_­related_­post .yuzo_­text, .yuzo_­related_­post .yuzo_­views_­post {color:!important;} .yuzo_­related_­post .relatedthumb:hover .yuzo_­text, .yuzo_­related_­post:hover .yuzo_­views_­post {color:!important;} .yuzo_­related_­post .relatedthumb a{color:!important;} .yuzo_­related_­post .relatedthumb a:hover{color:!important;} .yuzo_­related_­post .relatedthumb:hover a{ color:!important;} .yuzo_­related_­post .relatedthumb{ margin: 0px 0px 0px 0px; padding: 5px 5px 5px 5px; } The post Hibiscus Ginger Latte appeared first on Golubka Kitchen.

Purple Kale, Aubergine & Blackberry Salad

September 7 2016 Green Kitchen Stories 

Purple Kale, Aubergine & Blackberry Salad At first, it was a coincidence. When we looked at the vegetables we had brought home from the market this weekend, many of them just happened to have purple, violet and dark lavender tones. We talked about how that huge bunch of purple kale could make a beautiful salad base together with the rainbow chard, mint flowers and purple sugar snaps. It was at that point my obsessive side took over. “Let’s ONLY DO purple ingredients!” I shouted into Luise’s ear. She turned her head towards me with that hesitant look she always has when I get one of my “brilliant” ideas: “Ok, slow down now, let’s talk about the flavours first”. Of course I didn’t hear her as I was already writing a list with all the purplish ingredients I could think of: “aubergine, purple cauliflower, plums, figs, olives, blackberries, grapes, beetroot, red onion, …”. Some recipes are born out of genius flavour combinations or new preparation methods, this one simply started out as a colour. Luise did however quickly gain back control and started shifting focus to the flavour and combination of vegetables as well. In the end, I think we managed to combine both flavour, colour and texture in a great way. We roasted aubergine and purple spring onion in warm spices until soft and sweet. Massaged the kale with a flavourful dill, mint, lemon and honey dressing to round off its flavour and make it less sturdy. Cooked black lentils were added as a filler, along with rich and creamy avocado (even though it’s more black than purple - and green inside!). Hazelnuts are not purple at all but they added a nice crunch to the texture. Juicy blackberries made a perfect topping. The result was beautiful, a true harvest salad. Maybe not as purple as I originally imagined it (basically because most vegetables loose their colour when they are cut/­­baked/­­cooked), but still with lovely deep hues and so many interesting flavours - a mix of herby, sweet and tangy. When the salad was assembled it still felt like we missed a creamy element, so we tried the honey roasted feta that we had seen on New York Times Cooking last week. It was perfect. Burnt and caramelised on the outside and almost melted on the inside. It completely ruined the dark purple theme but flavour- and texture wise, it was worth the sacrifice. You’ll notice that I smudged it in mashed blackberries as a poor attempt to camouflage it.   We should perhaps add that this wasn’t our kids favourite dish. They picked out the blackberries, avocado and feta cheese from the salad, leaving the raw kale to us. I guess purple isn’t their colour… Purple Kale & Blackberry Salad with Roasted Honey Feta Vegans can just skip the feta cheese or replace it with hummus. And replace honey with maple syrup. Baked vegetables 1 aubergine /­­ eggplant 4 spring onions or 2 red onions 2-4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil 1/­­2 tsp ground cinnamon 1/­­4 tsp ground cumin 1 pinch ground cayenne 1/­­2 tsp sea salt 1 handful hazelnuts Cooked lentils 1/­­2 cup uncooked lentils (we used black lentils) 1 1/­­2 cup water 1 pinch sea salt Dressing 1/­­3 cup extra virgin olive oil 1/­­2 lemon, juice 2 tsp honey or more to taste sea salt & pepper 1 large handful mixed fresh dill, parsley and mint Other salad ingredients 4 stalks curly kale, green or purple 4 stalks rainbow chard or spinach 2 avocadoes 1 small handful snap peas 1 punnet fresh blackberries, halved Roasted feta with honey (from NYT) 1 block feta cheese, patted dry 2 tbsp olive oil 1 tbsp honey Start by preparing the baked vegetables. Preheat the oven to 400°F /­­ 200°C. Wash and cut the aubergine into large cubes and trim and slice the onions, then place in a mixing bowl. Stir together oil and spices in a small bowl, pour the oil mixture over the aubergine and onions and toss to combine. Transfer to a baking tray covered with baking paper. Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes or until very soft and golden, check every now and then to prevent from burning, the baking time depends on the size of the vegetables. Add the hazelnuts halfway through. Meanwhile, cook the lentils in a saucepan with the water for 15 minutes or until tender and can be mashed easily between two fingers. Add sea salt towards the end of the cooking time. Drain any excess water and leave to cool. Prepare the dressing by mixing oil, lemon juice, honey, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Chop the herbs finely and add to the oil mixture. Taste and adjust to your liking. Remove the stems from the kale and coarsely chop the leaves. Finely slice the chard. Place all in a large mixing bowl, add 2 tbsp of the dressing and massage for a couple of minutes until soft. Transfer to a large serving bowl. Mix the lentils with the remaining dressing and pour them over the kale and chard mixture. Cut the avocado into cubes, slice the snap peas and roughly chop the hazelnuts. Add to the salad bowl together with the roasted  aubergine, onions and hazelnuts. Toss slightly to combine and then scatter blackberries on top. If you like to serve the salad with the baked feta cheese, follow the instructions below. Keep the oven at 400°F /­­ 200°C. Place the feta cheese in a small ovenproof dish covered with baking paper and cover with oil. Bake in the oven for about 8 minutes, until soft but not melted. Melt the honey. Remove the cheese from the oven and turn the heat to broiler. With a baking brush, paint the cheese with the melted honey. Place back in the oven and broil until the top starts to brown. Use a spatula to immediately and carefully transfer the cheese to the salad, or serve it on the side.

Reading Between the Lines

June 26 2016 Vegan Thyme 

Reading Between the Lines I opened the door to walk out and get the paper in this godforsaken heat at seven in the morning, and this fellow was staring at me. First of all, it must have taken him all day to get up the gigantic hill in our back yard to our FRONT door. Omg. Poor creature.  Then, working in the book biz continues (to my utter shock and dismay). At times, my intermittent dealing with the public slowly erodes my faith in the future of humanity. Not that all book lovers are dealing a blow to my sensibility of our plight, but let's say if I have one more seventy year old woman ask me to look up five erotic-romance titles for her while she steadies herself on her walker, well, I think I might just leave the whole entire job behind with utterances of "WTF?!" I cannot make this up. I wish I could. But nope. When I come home and share these stories with DH, he laughs hysterically, shaking his head in disbelief. On a good note: working around books, I find my personal love of reading has been put to the test as I work with some really brilliant folks who, for probably the same reason I landed in a book store, are there as well: the books. (And maybe not so much the "people".) There are speed readers who devour books like I devour pints of Ben & Jerry's vegan ice cream. I have great conversations about books. It's like having my own personal book club around me forty hours a week. I love it.  Right now I'm reading: Before The Fall by Noah Hawley. Let's just say I speed read my way through the first hundred pages yesterday. There's a private plane that crashes. Two survivors. The book is written in quick-paced prose with plenty of questions raised as you begin to learn the past of each of the passengers on board--which may or may not lead to who or why or how the plane went down. Keeping me interested, on my toes and will finish it today--well, I'll try. Then there was the book, Dodgers by Bill Beverly. This book became a store Must Read as one of our resident readers one day shared as I was perusing titles: LOTS of buzz about this book. Read it and let me know what YOU think. Hmm. Well, I thought it both gripping and I could not put it down. (Even mailed it to my sister.)  It's about two young brothers East and his brother Ty and two others who are from the "drug-infested" inner-city of LA who are instructed to travel with each other to Wisconsin on a "mission" given to them by a leader of the clan to kill a witness in an upcoming trial. If there is ever a movie made of this book (and I'm sure there will be)--I know exactly who I'd root for to play East. You read this book and see what a Road Trip is really like from the eyes of four young men who navigate the Midwest highways and landscape, but at the same time navigate surviving each other.     Sometimes I look at Frankie and am so damn happy with her, I want to cry.  These are Eastern Phoebes who decided to make a nest in our breezeway.  This bird is part of the flycatcher family of birds. So they seek out areas high and protected, for raising their brood. The birds feed on bugs and insects brought to them by mama bird, who is catching them mid-flight at times and returning to the nest with bugs sometimes as big as her head, it's wonder she can even fly. This behavior is called "hawking" according to the Bird Book. She's a protective mama bird. Though I will say, she's all business with these kids she's raising. One morning we lost one. It broke my heart. But they are very close to flying the coop now. Any day. It's also said that they may "return" the following year to the same nest.  Our fingers are crossed. Knitting up a Reverse Psychology shawl, with Vice hombre yarn I got at my LYS.  The color makes me happy. So did the trip to the yarn store. Got a much needed break yesterday as I ran on a trail nearby. I heard the whistle and thought I'd make the crossing. But then approached the tracks only to see the train had arrived. I thought it'd make for a nice screen capture of a happy woman who had to make a hard stop on a three-miler during the morning's ninety-degree temps. I finished the run. But barely.

Emmas Tahini, Orange + Coconut Muesli

April 29 2016 My New Roots 

Emmas Tahini, Orange + Coconut Muesli I cant recall the exact day that I stumbled into Emma Galloways world, but I do remember being completely and utterly awe-struck, inspired, and grateful. Her blog, My Darling Lemon Thyme has been on my highly edited list of sites that I actually read, and her delicious, innovative recipes have been making regular appearances in my kitchen ever since. Joy of joys, Emma released a cookbook, and just like the blog, it is a true gem. Flipping through this book is kind of like shopping in a store where everything fits you perfectly, is the exact colour you want, and strikes the perfect balance between need and want. For instance, I need a recipe for gluten-free sourdough bread, and, I want another recipe for granola. She takes familiar ingredients and genius-ly transforms them into something unique and special that makes you ask: why didnt I think of that?! Sweet Potato and Kale Latkes, Mung Bean Pancakes, Buckwheat Tabouli – the list goes on. Emma uses exclusively plant-based, gluten-free, whole food ingredients, and taste comes first! I want to tuck into every single one of her meals and treats. Although it was nearly impossible to choose just one to share here, the recipe I settled on was Tahini, Orange + Coconut Toasted Muesli, as it sounded like the best and most exciting new way of enjoying granola, and the perfect way to bid farewell to those last winter oranges in the market. The idea of adding tahini to granola was totally brilliant (thanks again, Emma), along with the flavours of toasted coconut and oranges. Yum. After baking, the additions of dried fruit are really special and deliver bright, juicy hits throughout the toasty nuts, seeds and grains. Its incredibly balanced and tasty, and makes a stupendous topping for yogurt, porridge - even as snack eaten right out of the jar. A bag of this on a recent trip halfway across the world proved to be a real lifesaver! The next time I make this recipe, I am going to try it with rolled oats instead of the quinoa flakes. Although it was a nice change to use a different grain, I find the texture of quinoa flakes a little too light and powdery - I prefer the heft and crunch that oats give to granola. Ive even wondered about using buckwheat groats, which I love in cereal. I will keep you guys posted when I try something new!     Print recipe     Tahini, orange + coconut toasted muesli Makes 1.5kg /­­ 2 pounds Ingredients: 5 cups /­­ 500g quinoa flakes 2 cups /­­ 180g unsweetened shredded or flaked coconut 1/­­2 cup /­­ 65g cashews, roughly chopped 1/­­2 cup /­­ 75g whole raw almonds, roughly chopped 1/­­2 cup /­­ 65g pumpkin (pepita) seeds 1/­­2 cup /­­ 60g sunflower seeds 1/­­4 cup /­­ 35g sesame seeds 1/­­3 cup /­­ 80ml virgin coconut oil 1/­­3 cup /­­ 80ml un-hulled tahini 1/­­3 cup /­­ 80ml honey, pure maple or brown rice syrup (I used maple syrup) 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract the finely grated zest of 2 oranges 1/­­2 tsp. fine sea salt 1 cup /­­ 200g natural raisins or sultanas 1 1/­­2 cups /­­ 165g dried cranberries 1 cup /­­ 95g firmly packed dried apple slices, roughly chopped 1/­­2 cup /­­ 80g pitted dried dates, roughly chopped Directions: 1. Preheat oven to 350°F /­­ 180°C. Combine quinoa flakes, coconut, cashews, almonds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower and sesame seeds in a large bowl using your hands to combine thoroughly. Combine coconut oil, honey or syrup, tahini, vanilla, orange zest and sea salt in a small pan and bring slowly to the boil, stirring constantly until melted and combined. Pour over dry ingredients and mix well. 2. Transfer to a large deep baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes, until toasty and golden brown. Watch those edges like a hawk as they have a tendency to burn. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool. Stir in the dried fruit and transfer to a large glass jar or airtight container. Will keep for 2-3 weeks as long as airtight.   Thank you, Emma, for sharing your gifts with the world. We love granola, and we love you. xo, Sarah B *   *   *   *   *   * I’m also really excited to share some (hopefully) helpful information for you in the new Resources section here on the blog. Since I get many, many emails with similar questions about the practicalities of running My New Roots, I have decided to write a few pieces on the inner workings of this food blog – and where I don’t have the answer I have asked my team to kindly chip in… you know, about hosting and coding and technical stuff that makes my brain hurt Have a look and let me know if there is anything else, you’d like a writeup about! xo, Sarah B. The post Emma’s Tahini, Orange + Coconut Muesli appeared first on My New Roots.

Swedish Pancake Cake

February 9 2016 Green Kitchen Stories 

Swedish Pancake Cake I started counting how many pancake recipes we have posted since we started the blog and it’s surprisingly few. At least if you divide that number with the number of times we have made pancakes since we started the blog, which is embarrassingly many. We like pancakes in our family and I think we need to blog more about it. We have pancakes for breakfast, lunch or dinner at least once a week. So with a few hours left on Shrove Tuesday aka Pancake Tuesday, we wanted to throw in a little collection with some of our favourite pancake recipes from the past years - both sweet and savoury. We are also sharing the ultimate way to eat pancakes, in the form of a cake! If not for tonight, it’s an unbeatable breakfast (or dessert) for your loved ones on Valentine’s Day. The recipe is from our first book, The Green Kitchen, which btw is coming out on Portuguese this Spring (the 11th language it is being translated to, crazy!). We love American style pancakes that are stacked up high and topped with a drizzle of syrup and fruit. These Flour-free Banana, Blueberry & Coconut Pancakes are made simply with egg, banana, blueberries and desiccated coconut and they are much lighter than common American pancakes. The recipe is from The Green Kitchen but can also be found on Cooked.com. All our book recipes are actually available on the Cooked website, it’s a subscription based site but they have a 30-day free trial. Spinach Crepes with Chickpea, Apple & Tahini Filling. We have been making green pancakes for years and it’s simply achieved by mixing pancake batter in a blender with the addition of spinach (or beetroot). We serve these with a savoury filling for dinner but they also taste great on their own. Click here for the full recipe. And here is a video with us making them. Masala Dosa filled with Sweet Potato & Peas, Mango & Raisin Chutney and Raita. We loved eating dosa for breakfast in India and all the different fillings add so much flavour with both sweet and savoury tones. The dosa batter is made without eggs so these are perfect for vegans. This recipe is from Green Kitchen Travels and is available on Cooked.com. Coconut & Quinoa Pancakes with Clementine Marmalade. These vegan pancakes are from Amy Chaplin’s brilliant book that we blogged about last year. Here is the recipe. Buckwheat cr?pes with passion and mango syrup. Our version of French dessert cr?pes are topped with an addictive Mango & Passionfruit Syrup and a dollop of mascarpone. The recipe is from Green Kitchen Travels and can also be found on Cooked.com. Summer Berry Pancake Cake I have made different versions of this cake since I was a child, and I never get tired of it. I think it is so beautiful with all those stacks of pancakes, and the berries and cream squishing out from the sides. Traditionally you put jam between the layers, but we stick to fresh fruit, nut butter and date syrup. The pancakes should be very thin, so we always use a non-stick frying pan when we make these. You can prepare the pancakes one day in advance and assemble the cake just before serving. If fresh berries aren’t in season, you can use frozen instead./­­David Pancake Batter 200 g /­­ 1 3/­­4 cup buckwheat flour 3 large eggs (or 4 medium) 500 ml /­­ 2 cups soy milk or milk of your choice 1 tbsp butter, plus extra for frying pinch sea salt Layers 3 ripe bananas, sliced thin 225 g /­­ 1 1/­­2 cup raspberries, mashed with a fork 225 g /­­ 1 1/­­2 cup blackberries, mashed with a fork 125 g nut butter 120 ml raw date syrup (soft dates mixed with a splash of water in a blender) 500 ml /­­ 2 cups thick cream, chilled Topping 150 g /­­ 1 cup raspberries 125 g /­­ 1 cup blackberries 2 tbsp pistachio nuts, chopped To make the batter, add all the ingredients, plus 250 ml /­­ 1 cup  water to a large mixing bowl and whisk vigorously until you have a smooth batter. Make sure that there are no lumps of flour left. Refrigerate for 20 minutes. Give it a good whisk after you have removed it from the fridge, as the flour tends to sink to the bottom. Heat a 20 cm /­­ 8, preferably non-stick, frying pan on medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, add a few drops of oil and about 75 ml of the batter. Tilt the pan until the batter is evenly distributed. Fry for 45-60 seconds on each side, until the pancakes are golden and can be flipped easily with a spatula. Fry all of the pancakes - the batter should make about 15 - and place on baking paper to cool off. You can layer with baking paper between the pancakes to stop them sticking together. To assemble, pour the cold cream into a large chilled bowl. Use an electric hand mixer or a whisk to whip it until soft peaks form. Set aside. Put the cold first pancake on a cake stand. Spread a layer of thin slices of banana evenly over the top. Add another pancake and top it with about a third of the mashed raspberries. Then continue with next pancake and a third of the mashed blackberries. Continue with another pancake and carefully spread a thin layer of nut butter and date syrup on it. Add another pancake and spread with a layer of whipped cream. Then start all over with the banana layer. Continue until all the pancakes are covered. Top with whipped cream, fresh fruit and finely chopped pistachios. All photos from our first book by Johanna Frenkel.

Taming the Introvert Anxiety with LOTS of Knitting (new career, more gray hair: I Want to Believe!)

January 18 2016 Vegan Thyme 

Taming the Introvert Anxiety with LOTS of Knitting (new career, more gray hair: I Want to Believe!)Well, week one went off without a hitch. I arrived, I met, I chatted, I learned. In the evenings I crawled into my shell and collapsed into bed for very hard, long sleeps. I got up the next day and hit repeat.  Suddenly our whole world has been turned on its head by the arrival of my new career/­­J-O-B.  I am in the book business now. Books and people, how bad can it be you ask? Not bad at all. . . so far. I love books. I love people who love books. I love reading. (Truth be told, not much of that going on now that I'm the working girl again--though I sneak in as much as I can in the wee hours of the mornings or late evenings right before bed.) The working girl in me says, "calm down, this is the chaos part", this is the remembering what it's like to be surrounded by noise, people, and strangers all day. The introvert in me climbs out of her shell (yes the one who has spent the last seven years and mostly every day surrounded by canines, plants, food and my own quiet pace and rhythm)--and crawls into the depths of business/­­work. It's going to be a long road to my fully grasping every little detail of my new role. I read Quiet: The Power of Introverts in World That Can't Stop Talking by Susan Cain. If there is one book that has helped me prepare and understand how my introvert self might better cope in situations where people are required--it's this one. A brilliant reflection on the matter of being an introvert and how strategies of other introverts might be used to overcome the stress of working outside our comfort zones. Highly recommend. It's been out for a while now, but every time I re-read a passage here and there, it's like I've just worked a ten minute meditation into my day.  I swear, my white streak managed to get whiter after only five days of this upheaval!  I love my gray hair.  Badges of my courage and outragousness!  In between the chaos of jumping up and heading out the door at a godawful-who-gets-up-at-this-hour time in the morning--to the evenings of shared updates and stories I share with DH about the this or the that of every single second, sprinkled in between are moments of sheer terror of BUT WHAT IF? He calmly re-assures, as does my sister, that "these are fragile times for you. . .give yourself a break" and carry on--all will be fine. Well, my fingers are crossed.  Knitting has helped. Boy has the knitting helped. Right before the BIG CHANGE, I promised myself I would assess all of the yarn, patterns, and what have you of my knitting. I joined two MKALs on Ravelry. One for Downton Abbey and one by Never Not Knitting's Alan Dakos. So far both have proved to be perfect distractions and have helped me calm down and re-center. I have knit more consistently in the last seven days than I have in the last seven years. Click. Click. Click.   The Downton Abbey MKAL. The other MKAL shawl. Lots going on in this one: cables, and more cables. So far I think I've been able to keep up here. But sort of space out on the repeats and I will need to check the chat room on this to make sure what I am making what sort of looks like what everyone else is making. So. Excited! X-Files stitch markers--yay! Cannot wait for the return of X-Files!  I Want to Believe!

Vegan Pumpkin Spice Brownies (and why I run. . . with Frankie)

October 2 2015 Vegan Thyme 

Vegan Pumpkin Spice Brownies (and why I run. . . with Frankie) The pumpkin craving kicked in and I began a search for what I'd bake. Not that there isn't a billion options with regard to pumpkin. I have pumpkin recipes galore within the hundreds of cookbooks scattered around this house to last me the full month of October and then some. Thumbing through the stacks yesterday, I was sure of one thing, the cinnamon and ginger were coming off the spice racks. Finally.  I have old recipes cut from magazines stuffed in files as well. Add an internet search on top and I became a "frenzied overwhelmed baker"!  I finally settled on my direction and ingredients.  I would go "brownie" with my pumpkin.  Basically, I took bread recipes apart, pared down the flour and liquid ingredients, omitted the eggs (of course), amped up the spice factors and had DH pleading 'I hope you wrote this recipe down'.  I will tell you from snacking on these this morning after a night in the fridge that the flavor and moistness factor went triple on them. They are really good right after you've baked them and then cooled, and taken with tea right before bed. They're insanely delicious the NEXT day. So just keep 'em in the pan covered with some foil and have some with your coffee in the mornings. OMG. My favorite baking pan is an old 8" x 8" cake pan that belonged to my mother. It has years of baking on it and I credit this with having much to do with success of my baking anything in this relic.  Fall is the time when along with baking, my reading obsession kicks in.  Right now, "Purity" by Jonathan Franzen and "Olive Kitteridge" by Elizabeth Strout are in the queue.  Both are fantastic.  I am a huge Franzen fan. He grew up in St. Louis. I did not.  So I find him fascinating for that reason alone.  Okay, many other reasons for my admiration, but mostly he's brilliant. Olive Kitteridge came to me by way of my fascination with Francis McDormand and the Emmy's last month. I happened to catch a few brief moments of the awards show but enough of it to land me in the middle of the awards handed out to "Olive Kitteridge" and Frances McDormand for Lead Actress. I watched in complete admiration her accepting this award in her very black dress and very natural appearance and admired her even more. I began streaming the mini-series the next night.  And. I. Loved. It.  I would have to say it is one of the top five films I've watched in the last ten years. Simply loved it. Right after finishing the series, I got the book. I don't want to spoil this for anyone by saying this, but if you watch the series, you will not be any less pleased with how the book reads.  I am typically not a movie-then-book person, rather I am a book-then-skip-the-movie person.  The book is wonderful. Where was I when all of this Olive Kitteridge was happening?  (Well we don't have cable for one. But still. No excuse.)  I've also been able to run more now that the horrible nightmare of plantar fasciitis has taken a break.  So Frankie and I head out for a few miles together a couple of times a week. I had an incident this week on my run through a St. Louis County Park that left me a little shocked and a bit shaken. If you'd rather skip the story--and get the recipe, that's fine. The recipe is below.  I totally understand, but given this whole thing sort of left me a bit paralyzed, I have to write about it.  Call it my therapy. I love running. It's my meditation. It's my strength. It's where I go to just be. As a runner, I don't typically like to run alone. I know it sounds crazy, but for one, running alone as a man is different than running alone as a woman. The vulnerability of the running woman is what I'm mostly talking about here. In my youth, the thoughts of crazy whacked out men out there really didn't phase me much. I always figured I'd "out run" anyone who tried to catch me. No body ever has. But still. As I've aged (and now in my fifties!), I find running alone (even through my neighborhood) a bit of a scary proposition, though it shouldn't be and I should be able to run anywhere just as most men are able to run "anywhere". . . alone.  *What we like to call "Male Privilege" allows that men can run alone with less fear than women.  This is why I take my dog and I wear on my wrist pepper spray. This is the reality of my running philosophy.  And it's a good thing.  Running through a local park in the middle of the week this week, I happened along a man standing in the middle of the trail, pants down. What I glimpsed of him as I came over the crest was enough for me to cringe and pull Frankie closer to me and sort of stop. I wasn't close enough to the opening of the trail to turn back. And we were far enough away from the perv that my pausing sent enough of a signal that I was not unaware of what I had just witnessed. We scared this imbecile enough that he almost fell backwards down the hill trying to manage his dog--yes, he had a small terrified dog, and pull his shorts back up. I was completely incensed. Furious. Scared. Worried. Focused on getting by him and not having an "encounter". I've got a good gut read on people and when I read something as scary I will project this fear outward. In this instance I projected disgust and then fear. And a lot of WTF?! What was happening here was someone who has a problem had come to the park to deal with his "issues" in a most inappropriate way.  A public park that should be safe, respected and beautiful was sullied by someone who needs help.  I wasn't facing anything like a major deep woods, off trail oh-my-god I have to hike to the open space four miles back to my car, I was only into the trail by about a quarter mile. Anyone could have happened upon this idiot. Here's the thing about this moment. Most people are harmless. Most men I've come across are respectful and polite--and most of the time, if you were to come across me on my run, I keep my head down, sunglasses on and give a quick look up to let you know I've seen you. Frankie along side. For those instances when I have an icky gut feel, I will turn around after passing to make sure the person has moved on. I've never been that trusting of people. I think it's a safe and far smarter way to get by in this world. This philosophy has carried me along this far in my running life and served me well. And my response to an incident like this is: see, I'm right.     I know I gave a very clear signal to this individual that he'd better not ever do this again, with Frankie barking up a storm as we ran by him--mostly out of protecting because I believe she sensed fear emanating from me, she went into protection mode. For me, I was in recovery mode trying to calm my heart and keep my feet moving until we reached an open space. Frankly, if I had to describe him, I don't think I could other than I remembered the dog, that poor little terrified dog he tugged along. Thankfully once Frankie and I came out at the other end of the trail we were at the lake and there were several folks with whom I took a quiet respite. I simply needed to get back to my car now. Still in shock and disbelief.  Sharing the story with Dr. Thyme that evening over the phone, he was stunned. And worried. And sickened, furious. Hearing a story like this reminds him of how vulnerable I can be sometimes when he's away. However, I refuse to be holed up in my house because of a whack job. I just won't. But I can see how something like this might prevent someone from venturing out.  But if we don't. . .then they win.  I could go on and on on the subject of this crazy moment I had in the park and why our system of mental health is broken in this country and how we don't do enough to protect innocent people. The news lately is filled with stories of sick people hurting innocent bystanders. The incident I had has scarred me a bit. I am not immune to the ugliness of the world. Neither am I a Pollyanna who goes about just happy-go-lucky, people are great! Hardly. But really, we need to do a better job of it. Really. People are complicated. Not that I won't run again in this park. But it's a reminder, ladies: Be vigilant. Be aware. But run on . . . with your dog, or pepper spray. Vegan Pumpkin Spice Brownies *makes one 8"x 8" pan  1/­­2 cup spelt flour 1/­­2 cup unbleached all purpose flour 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon 1/­­2 teaspoon ground ginger 1/­­4 teaspoon ground cloves 1/­­4 teaspoon ground nutmeg 1 teaspoon baking soda 1/­­2 teaspoon salt  2 teaspoons ground golden flaxseed mixed with 3 tablespoons water 2/­­3 cup brown sugar 1 1/­­4 cup canned pumpkin 1/­­2 cup soy milk 1/­­4 cup olive oil 2 teaspoons vanilla extract *powdered sugar for dusting over  Preheat oven to 350 and lightly spray and 8 x 8 inch baking pan. Add all dry ingredients and spices to a medium mixing bowl and sift together. Set aside. In a small bowl, add the flaxseed and water and and mix together, set this aside to thicken. In another bowl, add the brown sugar, pumpkin, soy milk, olive oil and vanilla extract, mix well. Add the entire bowl of wet ingredients to the dry, the with a spoon, mix well--just until the dry ingredients are moist. Pour mixture into pan and smooth over with back of spoon. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in middle comes out clean. Remove from oven, allow to cool completely. Dust with powdered sugar. Cover the pan with foil and store in fridge for three days. Enjoy!

Dicker Schmidt, Dresden {Restaurant Review}

September 6 2015 seitan is my motor 

Dicker Schmidt, Dresden {Restaurant Review}  I am not sticking to today’s Mofo theme, which is called, “re-create a restaurant meal”. Instead I want to write about a meal I ate at a restaurant and want to recommend the restaurant! I cannot or do not want to recreate the meal I am going to talk about. Because I am just glad I can step out of my flat, walk a few steps, get this made for me, enjoy it and just walk away without doing any dishes. The restaurant meal I want to share with you today is a veganised version of the very popular German fast food called döner. (Döner is in fact Turkish. But the German version is different from the Turkish.) I never had a non-vegan döner in my life and tried my first vegan version a couple of years back at Vöner in Berlin. I admit that like some other things I just tried it to spite those who tell vegans not to eat fake meats. Let me tell you nay sayers, you are missing out. Vegan döner is usually made with seitan that comes on a rotating spit just like the meat version would. It’s cut off in thin slices and served with flatbread, vegetables, onions, and tzatziki sauce. The combination of soft, fresh flatbread, tangy sauce and chewy, well seasoned seitan is very, very hard to resist once you’ve tried it. I was always sad that we didn’t have something like this in Dresden. Thankfully this changed last year when a couple of life savers decided to open a new vegan restaurant in our neighbourhood. It’s called Dicker Schmidt (Fat Schmidt). Their tagline is “hausgemachte vegane Esskultur”, meaning homemade vegan food (or more precise: eating) culture. I always found both this title and the headline absolutely brilliant. In a time where veganism first and foremost seems to be all about healthy aka “clean” eating, weight loss, and complying with today’s stereotypical beauty standards (healthy, young, and lean) it’s refreshing to see such a concept. At Dicker Schmidt vegan food culture is also equated with fake meats, processed foods, and fats – lot’s of things that are not considered a part of so called healthy vegan diets anymore. These things take the center stage and are perfected with homemade marinades and fresh vegetables. They don’t call their signature dish döner, they call it Dicker Schmidt. If you don’t like seitan, they have a soy based alternative or you can  get a fake meat free version with roasted vegetables, too. Another pretty asesome thing about this restaurant is their shop counter. Here you can choose from lots of different plant based meats, cold cuts, and spreads to take home. They have vegan liverwurst, salami, egg salad, Hackepeter (the original version is made from raw minced pork), etc. I’ve seen people roll their eyes and make comments like: “Why do vegans eat this fake crap? They should suck it up and eat real meat instead!” or “I gave up meat. I don’t want to replace it!” To which I reply that if you’ve always been a liverwurst person and told everyone you could never live without liverwurst, here’s your chance to go vegan. Foods like these do mimic the flavour of meat products, true. And why not? The only thing you signed up for as a vegan is living without animal products. It’s not about sacrifice. You don’t have to give up your favourite flavours. And you don’t have to feel bad or weird for eating something that looks like meat. It still is not and eating it doesn’t make you a less fantastic person. If vegan versions of processed foods make you happy and enjoy veganism then please go for it! Many of them have their own qualities and in the end it’s just food. Probably tasty. So why not? Dicker Schmidt, Rudolf-Leonhard-Straße 32, 01097 Dresden, all days 12 am to 8 pm.    

Vegan Summer Heirloom Tomato Sauce with Onion and Butter (. . . feeding my "inner fashionista" hand sewing Alabama Chanin and joining Sew-a-longs)

July 28 2015 Vegan Thyme 

Vegan Summer Heirloom Tomato Sauce with Onion and Butter (. . . feeding my The tomatoes have been piling up here. I had to do something. So I did Italian of course. Not that I needed a recipe to create a perfect fresh tomato sauce with pasta dinner. I didn't. But I believe anything Italian made well can be made even better with little pearls of wisdom from Marcella Hazan. Made with 2 lbs. of heirloom tomatoes, a half stick of vegan butter, an onion (peeled and cut into quarters), five cloves of garlic and cooked this according to Marcella at "a very slow but steady simmer for 45 minutes . . . until the fat floats from from the tomato". Her basic sauce omits the garlic and I can appreciate that option. But as far as I'm concerned, it's not really edible Italian Sauce without the garlic. I tasted the sauce while it was simmering without the garlic, it was "okay". As the sauce simmered, I thought it needed some umph: so I also added a fresh zucchini, a carrot, some celery and a can of garbanzo beans. This was a scrumptious meal.  And an even better leftover the next night.  I also added fresh basil and oregano from the garden, too--but toward the end of cooking.  Finally, I hit it with some balsamic vinegar. Perfecto!  The comfort of creating an Italian sauce completely from scratch was exactly what I needed.  The aroma filling the house was intoxicating.  (Regardless of the fact that it was a blistering 110 degrees outside!) (I hope Marcella would have loved me for riffing on her basic sauce recipe in creating this dinner. Surely she would have "loved" knowing the ingredients were grown right out my back door.) The bounty from my garden has been overwhelming. With all the rain and horrid growing conditions, I was concerned my tomatoes wouldn't produce.  I moved them to a new location this year, and obviously they LOVE their new home.  (In the old asparagus bed.)  Asparagus + Tomatoes = Love. This is the largest tomato of perfect shape and size I've EVER grown.  I was giddy when I picked it. So. Delish. I've been sewing a lot lately. Not every single day, I can't "mentally" take it.  Sewing still intimidates me.  Don't ask me why.  Nevertheless, the creative sewing forces driving lately have taken me to try my hand at completing a tank top I ordered from Alabama Chanin--and hand sewing a garment.  I sort of can't get enough of the Alabama Chanin "looks" and styles, plus this cotton fabric made from plants only a few states south of where I sit!--It boggles my mind, really.  Take a tour of her offerings and tell me that her fashions aren't the most brilliant, comfortable, easy living you've ever seen.  It's eye candy for my sewing soul. (*Plus I have to tell you, Rosanne Cash is one of my favorite people--love her music, love her passion, loved her dad, Johnny. . . she LOVES Alabama Chanin, too. Small World.)  I have three of Alabama Chanin sewing books in my collection. I've been picking them up here and there over the course of a few years now. I never knew quite where to start. I was going to try my hand at buying some cotton fabric myself and stencil and applique it with one of her designs, but the thought of narrowing it all down: figuring out what silhouette I wanted, what stencil to apply, what color. . . well, it was too much "deciding".  So I ordered one of the more affordable pieces I could find on her site. This is the V-neck tank with the Magdalena stencil.  I ordered it in all black. It's a color I happen to love.  There are sewing techniques you need to be familiar with in sewing her seams. The books help a lot in that arena.  On the shoulder here, I have double sewn my seams in the manner she describes, using a flat-felled seam: stitch the seams together, then tuck under and stitch again.  Brilliant and leaves a much cleaner looking finished seam. The part I am working on now is the stencil. Now I may have done this incorrectly. I am embroidering the applique to the top of my tank. In the photo, you can see where I cut away the top layer of fabric around the applique--which gives this very hip, natural "layered" effect to the otherwise fairly basic black cotton. It's brilliant. And like I said, I have a crush on these clothes right now.  My "inner fashionista" sews s-l-o-w-l-y. But I sew because I want to, not because I have to.  Having spent nearly twenty years in fashion retail, my DNA is forever altered. I love clothes. However, I dread shopping. I would rather find a few sewing patterns/­­silhouettes I absolutely cannot live without, and recreate them over and over in several colors and fabric choices vs. having to schlep through racks of ready-to-wear, only then have to schlep again to the fitting room to "try on". Ugh.  Just thinking about it makes me want to take a nap. (My sewing supplanted my knitting in the evenings. Who can hold wool in their hands when it's 110 outside? Um, I can't. Don't worry yarn gods, I'll be back, I promise!) Anyway. . .So far, I love how the tank is turning out. It will be a cross-seasonal wearable top. In the fall, I can wear it under a denim jacket.  A few weeks ago, I signed up for the Aster Sewalong sponsored by Colette Patterns.  I have no idea how to sew a top like this.  I've never sewn a front button shirt!   I hope I don't screw this up.  Just in case, I bought two different fabrics for my project--I figure making two will totally "up" my learning curve in the area of attaching sleeves, adding buttons and working with shirting material.  This is my fabric for my first go-around on the Aster shirt.  I love this print. I bought it at Hawthorne Threads Fabric and it's from Amy Butler.  LOVE. IT. Well, now I just need a job in an optometrists office and then I'll have somewhere to wear it. My sewing philosophy: It's all about that fabric. My second Aster shirt will be made with some fabric I picked up on sale at JoAnns--it's Gertie's fabric! I loved this chambray looking cotton.  I decided I'd pair with pink buttons and pink bias tape for the hem and collar.   Finally, I wanted to show you a McCall's pattern 6510 I made with a jersey knit I picked several years ago. (Or maybe last year--it's difficult to recall exactly.)  First of all, I LOVE this pattern--this is totally my silhouette:  flowing, drapey and casual. I used gray bias tape around the collar and it sort of flips out when I wear it, which is fine. I mean, it's casual and comfortable. It really gives it that "organic/­­handmade look" which works for me. I plan on making another one. It's so simple--a giant circle, with a seam up from the bottom to just under the arms. Used my serger for blind hemming the whole thing (which is a HUGE hem)-- but it worked. Next up:

The Kitchen Renovation

February 19 2017 Golubka Kitchen 

The Kitchen Renovation Vintage European bistro chairs found on Craigslist, kitchen table passed down to my husband from his grandmother. We’ve been living in our home for fifteen years now and up until this fall, we had never put a hammer or paintbrush to anything in the house except for Paloma’s baby room, right before she was born. We inherited some classic 90s Florida detailing from the previous owners – dust-attracting, shaggy red and white carpeting, stucco walls, green laminate countertops and a low-hanging ceiling in the kitchen. Just like many other families I know, we are quite food-oriented and tend to crowd in the kitchen, since that’s where most of the action happens. It’s also where I work, where I come up with recipes for this site and for my cookbooks, so it’s fair to say that I spend most of my life in this space. We recently completed a long, laborious kitchen renovation that spilled out into the living room, and I cannot describe how much my heart sings when I come downstairs every morning and see this kitchen that finally feels so entirely mine. It took us a decade and a half to gather up the courage and the funds to do this, and these past few months have brought some of the most trying times for us as a family, but it finally feels like it was worth it and I’m so excited to share some snaps of Golubka Kitchen HQ with you. We took a documentary approach to these photos, and instead of shooting everything in one day, the photos were taken over a week, on cloudy days and on sunny days, in the morning and in the evening. There are different aspects of the kitchen that shine on different days, and we really wanted to capture that. ‘Farmhouse’ kitchen sink from Ikea, faucet from Ebay. Our house has three stories – garage on the first floor, open kitchen and living room on the second, and bedrooms on the third. We renovated the kitchen, the living room floor, ceiling, and fireplace (yes, we have a fireplace in Florida and we use it, too), and both staircases leading up and down to the kitchen and living room. The most expensive part of the whole renovation was the removal of the old hanging ceiling in the kitchen, together with all the electrical work involved. We decided on the cabinets and countertops quickly, but the easy decisions ended there. It took me so incredibly long to settle on a cohesive look for the kitchen. As a notoriously undecisive Libra, I endlessly kept changing my mind about the wall treatment, the tile, the light fixtures, the shelves, the faucet, cabinet pulls, etc. I do love those clean, white kitchens with minimal everything, but in the end I decided that in order to stay true to my heart, I had to go with something a little more feminine and detail-oriented, with a hint of the Downton Abbey kitchen. The old kitchen had endless cabinets on the walls, some of which always ended up a mess, while others weren’t utilized at all, so I knew I wanted exposed shelves. I’m super happy with that decision – I love having my dishes and jars within arm’s reach and at eye level, since it allows me to be more organized and minimal. Many people wonder whether dust is an issue with open shelves, and I’ve found that it’s not any more of an issue than anywhere else in the house. I also use all the objects on the shelves quite frequently, which doesn’t allow too much dust to accumulate. The shelves are made of very beautiful and sturdy wood reclaimed from an old barn in Kentucky, which we found at Barn Works. I finished the wood myself without the use of a wood stain. The floating shelf arrangement was made possible with the heavy duty brackets from Shelfology, which secure the shelves to the wall very safely and seamlessly. Tadelakt Moroccan Plaster with Benjamin Moore ‘White Stone’ color pigment Industrial brass rod with copper hooks from Etsy, vintage Brazilian copper utensils with wooden handles found on Craigslist. During the initial planning stage, I was certain that I wanted a subway tile backsplash, but was simultaneously seeing and liking backsplashes made with Moroccan, Spanish and Mexican patterned tiles. I agonized over my choice between the two until I discovered Tadelakt, the Moroccan plaster, and there was no turning back. I knew I wanted grey shaker kitchen cabinets, but the plaster treatment also presented the possibility of grey walls. I’ve always been attracted to grey rooms, to me they just speak of serenity, so I was pretty happy with this opportunity. Finding someone who would apply the plaster masterfully but for a fair price, and getting the job completed was probably one of the most nerve-racking parts of the renovation. We did find someone brilliant, and it ended up worth the stress, because I am completely in love with my new walls. The material is so warm, textural and interesting, and it totally ties the whole kitchen together. As much as I loved the idea of a patterned tile floor, I was still torn between its beauty/­­practicality and the homey feel of hardwood floors, which I wanted to have in the living room. I finally settled on the idea of combining the two, and as a result, the tile follows the line of the kitchen cabinets in the shape of an inverted ‘Z,’ while we can still enjoy the warmth of the hardwood floors in the sitting area and into the living room. The tile is from the Cement Tile Shop, which offers an overwhelming array of the most beautiful, authentic patterns. Of course I found settling on one to be a near impossible task. I went from multicolored to black and white, to pastel, to monochrome tiles dozens of times before landing on the Fountaine Antique pattern with a custom border. As for the hardwood floor, I’d always dreamt of an old-fashioned herringbone pattern in real wood, which proved to be really difficult to find within the United States. The one company that carried thick oak planks in a herringbone pattern didn’t have enough to cover our floor at first, but they later ended up finding one extra box tucked away in a different warehouse. I’m so glad that they did because I’m completely over the moon about how the floors turned out. It’s worth mentioning that the old kitchen floor was white tile that showed off every spec of dust that landed on it, and the living room floors had white plush carpeting, and I am so happy to finally be rid of both. We found the best contractor, Don, who left us endlessly impressed, together with his talented and considerate team. He truly cared about every step of the process and saved us so many times with his expert advice and creative input. The most standout showcase of the team’s work is the spacious drawer pantry they built out of vintage fruit crates from Schiller’s Salvage. My idea was realized even better than I had envisioned – the crates were originally too long and the crew manually disassembled, shortened and rebuilt them, then positioned them on smoothly sliding tracks. The countertop over the crates is made of old barn oak and finished by me in the same way as the floating shelves. The whole piece, on top of being unique and beautiful, is the most functional and spacious storage space in the whole kitchen. Quartz countertops from the Home Depot in ‘Snowy Ibiza’ Antique Spanish hutch from the 1800s, a lucky Craigslist find, brought to the U.S. from Madrid Vintage ceramic and brass cabinet pulls from Ebay and Etsy Vintage ceramic door knob from eBay, ‘Pink Shadow’ Sherwin Williams paint on the door. Custom built computer shelf made by Algis from old barn wood. My favorite thing about the vintage French chandelier that I found on Etsy are the rainbows it sends onto the walls in the evenings. Fireplace brick wall made with 100 year old sliced brick from Craigslist, arranged beautifully by Algis. Stairs leading up to the third floor with the bedrooms. Since both of the staircases connect to the kitchen and living room, we realized that we had to redo them as well, so that they wouldn’t be an eyesore within the new renovation. My husband and I set out to do the whole thing ourselves to save some cash, but in hindsight, I wouldn’t wish this type of adventure upon my worst enemy. All the stairs were covered with red carpeting, and the railings were painted an ugly orange-ish brown. The original plan was to remove the old carpet and to cover the existing stairs with new wood planks. To our surprise, however, we discovered a beautiful pine under the carpeting and decided to restore the original stairs along with stripping and re-finishing the railing. It took me two and a half months to complete this part of the project alone. Stairs leading up to the kitchen/­­living room from the garage. Ceramic tile from Spain with weathered grey hues, uneven borders, satin finish. This kitchen renovation wouldn’t have been possible without the help and generosity of Cement Tile Shop, Shelfology, Barn Works, Schiller’s Salvage, and Floor and Decor. My eternal gratitude goes out to Don and the team for your incredible care and craftsmanship in everything you do, Algis for the amazing job with the tile, plaster, fireplace and shelf, Vadim for the impeccable hardwood installation, and Dale for the immense help with the tile and stairs. Resources Contractor – Don Violette at V & P Construction and Maintenance Kitchen Tile – Cement Tile Shop Shelves – Shelfology for the floating shelf brackets, Barn Works for the reclaimed lumber Vintage Fruit Crates – Schiller’s Architectural and Design Salvage Hardwood Floors – Floor and Decor Kitchen Cabinets – Floor and Decor Countertops – Home Depot, quartz in ‘Snowy Ibiza’ Accessory Resources – in photo captions If you happen to be looking for some incredibly talented craftsmen for your renovation in the Tampa Bay area, please reach out to me and I will be happy to connect you. The post The Kitchen Renovation appeared first on Golubka Kitchen.

Sarah Bs Balinese Gado Gado

February 5 2017 My New Roots 

Sarah Bs Balinese Gado Gado First of all, hello you. Its been a while. I can hardly believe that the holidays are behind us and even the whole of January. What happened?! Well, before I launch into the recipe, I just wanted to update you all on a couple things. I need to start by saying that the Wild Heart High Spirit Bali Retreat was, without a doubt, one of the coolest projects Ive ever had the pleasure to work on. Mikkala Marilyn Kissi and I welcomed and held space for 16 women to totally transform, and come out on the other side of seven days, new humans. We all landed back into our physical bodies, rediscovering the euphoria of movement and breath, the taste of real food, the feeling of laughter in our cells, sun on our skin, smiles in our hearts. I could go on forever about how deeply moved I feel about the whole thing, but I will just say thank you to everyone who came, and that we are going to do another one very, very soon. There are a few photos from the retreat at the bottom of this post - I hope you enjoy, and join us next time. Also. Cookbook tour. Its happening. Naturally Nourished officially lands in North America February 14th and I am close behind. Ill be visiting New York, Toronto, Vancouver, Seattle, Portland, San Francisco and Los Angeles. There are more details at the bottom of this post and on my Events page, so please have a look. For all other countries, please stay tuned! Now, its recipe time. If youre a vegetarian traveling through Indonesia, gado gado will save your life. Its the dish that is on every single menu, a veggie-loaded, protein-rich salad drenched in the most flavourful, luscious peanut sauce that youve ever tasted. Combining raw and slightly steamed or blanched vegetables and bean sprouts, it is typically served with fried tofu or boiled eggs and prawn crackers, but so easily made vegan. The first time I traveled to this part of the world, I ate gado gado so often, that I almost grew tired of it. Almost. What was my initial meal to celebrate the return to the magical island of Bali this time? Naturally, gado gado, and it did not disappoint. There is something incredibly satisfying about the dish, something that grabs a hold and makes you coming back for more - I believe it is the exquisite balancing act of flavours and textures. The veggies are light and tender (never mushy!), the sprouts are crunchy and fresh, but the true magic lies da sauce. It hits all the notes with its creamy, rich, salty, sweet, acidic, toasty and spiciness. While eating it youre coming up with ways to justify pouring it on everything (Rice? Yes! Spring rolls? Obviously! Roasted veggies? Of course! Bean salad? Why not?!). Of all the dishes I taught during my retreat cooking classes in Bali, this is the one that the ladies really went wild for. Because sauce. I will mention that I am taking major liberties with the traditional recipe, keeping my version vegan and soy-free, and switching out the peanuts for more health-supportive almonds. I realize that this is akin to making pasta out of vegetables (i.e. not at all pasta), but we often and readily make allowances for the promise of something healthier, so just roll with me on this one, okay? Thanks. But Sarah, whats wrong with peanuts? You may recall me tackling this subject before, but for those of you who are hearing just learning that peanuts and the things made with it are less-than-awesome, lets recap! Although there are a lot worse things you could be eating, there are also plenty of healthier choices than peanuts, and heres why. First of all, peanuts are a bit of an odd duck plant. Not a true nut, but a bean in fact, peanuts grow underground in their thin-skinned pods, which come into direct contact with the surrounding soil. Because this soil is often moist and warm, it presents the ideal environment for fungus to proliferate. Now, its not the fungus that is the issue in this case, but the poison it releases, called alflatoxin, which is a cancer-causing agent that attacks the liver. What is the most shocking news, is that the highest levels of alflatoxin arent found in big brand peanut butters, but in the peanut butter ground fresh in health food stores. Second of all, conventionally-grown peanuts are sprayed with very high levels of pesticides and are one of the most contaminated crops in the North America. They are also often genetically modified. Thirdly, peanuts contain very high levels of Omega-6 fatty acids, an essential fat that we consume too much of in general. Ideally, Omega-6 and Omega-3 fats should be consumed in a 3:1 ratio (like the ratio found in hemp seeds!), otherwise inflammation erupts in the body. If youre a serious peanut and peanut butter lover, there are a few things you can do. For starters, find a brand of peanuts that have been grown organically in a dry environment (New Mexico for instance). Dry environments mean drier soils, which means less fungus. Make sure the nuts you are buying are very fresh and raw, since the word roasted cruelly translates to deep fried. Dry-roasted are okay since they dont use oil in the cooking process, but these nuts are typically old. But the best alternative of all? Other nuts! Like almonds. Almonds are high in vitamin E, a potent antioxidant that makes our skin look radiant, and helps protect again heart disease. Almonds have been proven to help lower cholesterol, the risk of weight gain and diabetes. They have about half the amount of Omega-6 fats that peanuts do, along with fewer calories. I snack on almonds and almond butter whenever I can, and have successfully replaced peanuts with this healthier option. I hope youre inspired to do the same! The cool thing about this dish is that you can make it any time of year with seasonal veggies and prepare them the way that suits you and the outdoor temperature, while keeping the sauce exactly the same. I like to eat veggies almost entirely raw in the summer, and include things like cucumber, green beans, radish, and lettuces. In the winter however, gado gado is truly the prefect cold-weather salad since everything can be slightly cooked and enjoyed warm. For this version, I chose two kinds of cabbage, kale, carrots, sweet potato, and freshly sprouted mung beans. An improvement Ive made since teaching this recipe at the retreat was tossing the still-warm vegetables in virgin coconut oil - best decision. This adds a whole other layer of flavour and creaminess, plus adds even more richness, which need this time of year. Did I mention theres also sauce?! There are a couple ways of making my version of gado gado sauce. The best method, for sure, is roasting your own almonds and making your own fresh nut butter. The flavour will truly blow your mind if you go in this direction. But! If you are pressed for time and /­­ or dont feel like going through the rigmarole, you can totally use store-bought almond butter. Just make sure that it is unsweetened and made from roasted almonds, not raw. We want the full depth of flavour here - raw almond butter is too mild and will be overwhelmed by the other sauce ingredients.     Print recipe     Sarah B’s Balinese Gado Gado Serves 6-8 Ingredients: 2 Tbsp. cold-pressed coconut oil 1/­­2 small head savoy cabbage, shredded 1/­­2 small head red cabbage, shredded 6-7 lacinato kale leaves, ribbed and sliced into ribbons 2 medium sweet potato 4 carrots, julienned or spiralized 2 cups packed /­­ 180g mung bean sprouts (or any sprouts!) 2 shallots, sliced into rings 1 small bunch cilantro, roughly chopped a few pinches flaky sea salt limes for serving, optional Almond Gado Gado Sauce 350g almonds = 1 cup /­­ 250ml almond butter 1 small chili, to taste (use as much or as little as you like) 1 clove garlic 2 Tbsp. tamari juice of 1/­­2 lime 2 Tbsp. coconut sugar 1/­­3 cup /­­ 85ml full-fat coconut milk 1/­­3 cup /­­ 85ml water, to thin as needed Directions: 1. Make the almond gado gado: preheat oven to 350°F /­­ 175°C. Spread almonds out evenly on a cookie sheet and roast until fragrant and golden, about 10-15 minutes. Check often - they burn quickly! Remove from oven and let cool. 2.  Place the almonds in a food processor and pulse to chop them up, then remove a good handful for garnish. Blend the remaining almonds on high, scraping down the sides every so often, until the mixture becomes smooth and liquid. Depending on your food processor, this may take up to 10 minutes - be patient, it will work! 3. Roughly chop the chili and garlic, add them to a food processor, along with the tamari, lime juice, coconut sugar and coconut milk. Blend on high and add water to achieve the correct the consistency: the sauce should be thin enough to pour, but not water-y. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Store in a glass jar with an airtight lid (keep leftovers in the fridge). 4. Wash and prepare the vegetables: cut the sweet potato into wedges, spiralize or julienne the carrots, shred the cabbage and kale. Set a steamer over boiling water and place the sweet potato inside first, cover, and set a timer for 6 minutes. If the sweet potatoes are tender at this point, remove them from the steamer and set aside and toss with a little of the coconut oil, then cover to keep warm (if they are still raw, continue to steam until tender). Next place the carrots and cabbage in the steamer and cook for 2-4 minutes until tender-crisp, then toss with remaining coconut oil. In a large bowl combine all the steamed veggies with sprouts, shallots and cilantro. Sprinkle with salt and toss. 5. To serve, spoon a generous portion of sauce onto each plate. Lay the salad on top (or arrange it neatly as I have), sprinkle with chopped, toasted almonds, more cilantro and shallots, as desired. Top with more sauce, if desired. Dig in.   Here are some shots I took during the retreat in Bali. It was beyond magical. If you’d like to stay updated about the next one, please sign up for our newsletter and be the first to know once we announce! And now for the book tour! I am so insanely excited to get on the road with my latest cookbook, Naturally Nourished, which you can preorder here. I’ll be in New York City and Toronto first, and tickets for the events in those cities are now available. Check the Events page, Instagram and Facebook for the remaining cities, Vancouver, Seattle, Portland, San Francisco and Los Angeles. See you soon! February 20th My New Roots x The Aerie Collective: WisdomShare “Turning Your Creativity Into a Career” Spend an evening with Sarah for an inspiring presentation about how she has grown her food blogging passion into a thriving career. Her book is available for purchase & signing. Click here for tickets and more details February 21st My New Roots + Food52 Livestream Tune in to Food52’s Facebook at 3pm EST, for a live broadcast of Sarah Britton demonstrating two of her favourite recipes from her new cookbook Naturally Nourished. Live event link: www.facebook.com/­­food52 February 21st My New Roots + Jessica Murnane + Julia Turshen A very special night of inspiring conversation + a celebration + great women in food! Join us for the launch party of two beautiful & brilliant new cookbooks: Sarah Britton’s Naturally Nourished and Jessica Murnane’s One Part Plant With the conversation led by the highly acclaimed author & chef, Julia Turshen. Come for the bites, drinks, and book signings by all three women – stay for the good times & (selfies)! Click here for tickets and more details February 22nd My New Roots + Amy Chaplin + The Finch: Plant-based Dinner Celebration We’re thrilled to invite you to a very special dinner collaboration at Michelin-starred restaurant The Finch, celebrating two fantastic women in food. Join us for this inspired & intimate gathering. Click here for tickets and more details TORONTO February 24th My New Roots x The Aerie Collective: WisdomShare “Turning Your Creativity Into a Career” Spend an evening with Sarah for an inspiring presentation about how she has grown her food blogging passion into a thriving career. Her book is available for purchase & signing. Click here for tickets and more details February 25th Naturally Nourished Book Launch at Appetito! We’re very happy to welcome you to join us for an excting interview with Sarah, Q&A, recipe tasting from the cookbook, book purchasing & signing. Click here for tickets and more details February 26th My New Roots + The First Mess: Cookbook Celebration Gathering Together with Sarah, Laura and an incredible community we would love to invite you to meet, feast & celebrate in their cookbook launch! Click here for tickets and more details The post Sarah B’s Balinese Gado Gado appeared first on My New Roots.

Mint Chocolate Power Bars

January 3 2017 Green Kitchen Stories 

Mint Chocolate Power Bars By placing two pillows under my left elbow, I can hold sleeping baby Gabriel with one arm and type this text on the laptop that is balancing on my right leg with the other hand. It’s brilliant! I can even reach that bowl of soaked oats with raisins, apple and crunchy peanut butter that stands there on the sofa table. Okay, maybe not brilliant. This balancing act is pretty tricky actually. And I suspect that my left arm will starting to go numb soon. I should probably focus on my son and just wait for Luise to get back from the shower. But I did promise 192 people on instagram that I would post this recipe today and I’ve already spent an hour tucking the other two kids to bed so I feel like I really need to do this now or I’ll be starting the year by breaking a promise. Therefore I am currently writing this post one-handed - sitting in a patchwork plaided sofa in a cute little airbnb apartment in Copenhagen that we’re renting for a few days - chewing on a peanut butter covered apple with a chubby little cherub snoring in my other hand. And Luise thinks I’m bad at multi tasking. Ha! Before we left, I prepared a batch of power bars for the car-ride down. When they don’t serve as car snacks, we use them as quick energy fuel at home whenever we or the kids are in need of a treat. A chocolate bar (or two) in my gym bag also makes a pretty compelling argument for dragging my tired daddy-of-three body to the gym. The bars rarely last long in our freezer. Lately, I have been completely hooked on this chocolate and mint combo. Combining fresh mint flavour with rich chocolate always seemed weird to me, but all of a sudden I have changed my mind. It’s brilliant and for some reason extra perfect as workout fuel. This recipe is based on the Hemp Bars in our first book but a little simpler and fresher in flavour. We top them with cacao nibs which not only make them look great but also adds a nice crunch to their texture. I asked Isac to assist me when I made these but he was pretty useless. When asked to pit the dates, he placed the dates in his mouth and the stones in the food processor (which nearly ruined the food processor). He also kept insisting that the cacao nibs were bombs that exploded into the bars, leaving giant craters after them. So if you think the bars look uneven, this little hooligan is to blame. By the way, I’m not writing one-handed anymore. Halfway along this post, I spilled some oats on Gabriel’s head so he woke up. Luise is nursing him now (and most probably also piercing an imaginary voodoo doll with my face on it with a thousand needles). I am not saying that I spilled on him on purpose, but it did make it a whole lot easier to write this text. Yup that was it. First post of the year. Giant craters, crying babies, voodoo dolls and eating chocolate at the gym. And I’m only 44 minutes late for my deadline. Not a bad start. Mint Chocolate Power Bars Makes approx. 18 bars  You can add a few tablespoons protein powder of choice (instead of the desiccated coconut) if you are making them as workout bars. Nuts can of course also be used instead of the seeds, if preferred. 150 g /­­ 1 cup mixed pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds, toasted if preferred 50 g /­­ 1/­­2 cup desiccated coconut, unsweetened 4 tbsp chia seeds 3 tbsp cacao powder 50 g /­­ 1/­­2 cup rolled oats 2 pinches sea salt 4 tbsp virgin coconut oil 200 g soft fresh dates (roughly 16 dates /­­ 1 packed cup), pitted 5 tbsp nut butter of choice (we love using a combination of tahini and cashew butter but peanut butter also works great) a few drops peppermint oil (or 2-3 tsp dried mint leaves, crushed) Topping 60 g /­­ 1/­­2 cup raw cacao nibs Line a 16 x 22 cm baking tin with parchment paper. Add the seeds, coconut, chia seeds, cacao powder, oats and salt to a food processor and pulse on high speed until coarsely crumbly. Pour into a bowl and add coconut oil, dates, nut butter, mint (oil or dried leaves) to the food processor. Run on high speed until entirely smooth and sticky. Add the seed and cacao crumbles and pulse quickly until mixed together. Help out with a spatula in case the mixture isnt combined. Taste and add more mint flavour or salt if needed, then pulse a few more times. Transfer to the baking tin and, using the palm of your hand or the back of a spoon (coated in coconut oil), press the mixture down very firmly to create an even and compact bar (roughly 2 cm high). Scatter the cacao nibs on top and use a spatula to press them down slightly into the mixture. Let set in the freezer for approx. 15-30 minutes before cutting into approx. 18 bars. Store the bars in an airtight container in the freezer and they will keep for a few months. You can wrap them in baking paper to make them more portable. Thaw them ever so slightly before serving. NB: For a nut-free alternative, replace the nut butter with a seed butter of choice.

Roasted Carrots & Dukkah + Meaning

July 8 2016 Green Kitchen Stories 

Roasted Carrots & Dukkah + Meaning I started writing a text about summer food. About being offline and trying to unwind. A happy text about nothing of importance, really. With too many sad reports on the news recently, finding meaning in these short texts can sometimes be difficult. Millions of refugees keep filling up camps in countries around Syria. Or climb onto small boats in Libya hoping that they will make it across the Mediterranean sea. Meanwhile, prejudices, hate and racism are on the rise both in the US and here in Europe. So how can we make a blog post about summer food feeling meaningful at all? Luise and I often talk about this. I am sure everyone does. This feeling of wanting to do more but not being sure what, or how to do it. A recipe can seem so irrelevant in the midst of it all. It looks like we might get involved in some voluntary work in relation the refugee situation in Syria within the next couple of months. But until then, we are trying to see meaningfulness around us. The truth is of course that food does matter. It is important, in many more ways than just for our physical survival. Food is memories, heritage, happiness, family and food is love. Food gathers people around a table and makes us talk. Many of our best memories are connected with food. We solve problems over food. We celebrate. We become friends. So maybe a food blog isn’t that meaningless. Food is after all more than just a recipe. And talking about meaning. Another truth that Luise and I try to live by, is that the most responsible thing we can do at the moment is infusing our children with kindness. Talking to them about how it never will matter how much money you have, the colour of your skin, if you are a man or a woman, where you are born or who you choose to love. We are all humans. And we are all equal. If we can all just pass that on to our children, they will hopefully grow old in a world with less hate and fear and more love than the one we are currently living in. By writing this text, I have also passed that simple message on to you. Prepare the recipe in today’s blog post, share the meal with your friends or family and talk about the importance of kindness. It might be a cliche, but we believe it is one worth sharing. This is a simple summer dinner that we did the other day after we had prepared a large batch of the Egyptian spice blend Dukkah. Calling the meal simple might be a slight exaggeration as you actually have to prepare the spice blend as well as making the rest of the dinner. But it will be worth it. You will find that Dukkah can be added to an infinite amount of meals this summer. It carries a lot of flavour and adds both richness and crunch to whatever you pair it with. There are lots of Dukkah recipes to be found online so instead of adding yet another to the mix, we are simply sharing a slightly adapted version of Yotam and Sami’s brilliant Dukkah from their Jerusalem book. In this recipe the Dukkah is generously sprinkled over roasted summer carrots and onions that rest on a bed of herby quinoa with a creamy feta cheese and yogurt spread on the side. Any roasted vegetables can of course be added to this meal and they can just as well be grilled on a bbq. It’s a summery, creamy, very flavourful and absolutely delicious dish. And hopefully more than that. Enjoy! Much love and happy summer! David, Luise, Elsa & Isac Roasted Carrots with Dukkah, Quinoa & Feta Yogurt Cream Serves 4 Oven roasted summer carrots & onions 1 lb /­­ 500 g (approx. 8 large) carrots 4 onions, shallots or red onions 2 tbsp olive oil 1 tbsp maple syrup sea salt and black pepper Preheat the oven to 200°C /­­ 400°F. Scrub the carrots under water and trim off the top greens. Cut the carrots lengthwise if they are thick (and keep thin carrots whole). Place on a baking tray. Peel off the outer layer of the onion and trim the top off. Cut into large chunks. Place on the baking tray next to the carrots. Stir together oil, maple, salt and pepper and drizzle over the vegetables, toss to cover. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until tender. Herby Quinoa 1 cup /­­ 170 g uncooked quinoa (or 2 1/­­2 cups pre-cooked) 1 large handful flat leave parsley a generous drizzle of olive oil 2 tbsp lemon juice sea salt & black pepper Place rinsed quinoa in a saucepan, add water and salt and bring to a boil. Lower the heat immediately and let simmer for about 10-15 minutes, set aside and let cool. Chop parsley and stir through the quinoa together with olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Feta & Yogurt Cream 5 oz /­­ 150 g feta cheese 1 cup /­­ 250 ml plain yogurt sea salt & black pepper Place feta cheese in a mixing bowl and mash with a fork, add yogurt and combine until creamy. Add salt and pepper to taste, set aside. Dukkah spice blend (adapted from Jerusalem by Yotam Ottolenghi & Sami Tamimi) 1/­­2 cup /­­ 70 g hazelnuts 2 tbsp sunflower seeds 3 tbsp coriander seeds 1 tbsp fennel seeds 1 tbsp cumin seeds 2 tbsp sesame seeds 1 tsp nigella seeds 1/­­2 tsp sea salt Preheat the oven to 160°C /­­ 320°F. Spread the hazelnuts on a baking tray and place in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until cracked and golden. Meanwhile heat a skillet or frying pan to medium heat. Add sunflower seeds, coriander seeds, fennel seeds and cumin and dry roast for no more than a minutes while stirring. Now add sesame seeds and nigella seeds and keep stirring until the sesame seeds turns light brown, it takes about 30 seconds. Set aside and add salt. Rub the hazelnuts between the palms of your hands (or a towel) to remove and discard some of the skin. Place all ingredients in a pestle and mortar and coarsely crush the spice blend. Store in an airtight container for up to a month. Assembling: Spread the quinoa in a serving dish or on a large platter. Arrange the oven roasted carrots and onions on top. Spoon the feta and yogurt cream into a small bowl and place in the dish. Sprinkle the vegetables with a generous amount of Dukkah. Serve.

Sensational Sweet and Spicy Sambols

May 13 2016 My New Roots 

Sensational Sweet and Spicy Sambols Being someone who loves a meal with many elements, Sri Lankan food was pretty much my dream come true. Every meal is served with plenty of sides: sauces, chutneys, relishes, and pickles, to make each bite unique and surprising. Sambol is the word for this seemingly endless collection of condiments, and I lost count trying to sample them all in a week. I believe I mentioned in my previous post about Sri Lanka, how spicy the food is there. Like, blow-your-head-off spicy. And as if the curries themselves werent hot enough, the chili-based sambols on the side will certainly commit your taste buds to perplexing levels of pain. Pol sambol is the ubiquitous, fiery condiment served at breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It is probably one of the simplest dishes to make, consisting mainly of chili, shredded coconut, chili, lime, and chili - did I mention the chili? Yea. This mix ranges from very spicy to volcanically hot depending on whose table youre sitting at. On the second day of the trip, my tongue seeking refuge in something, dare I say it, borderline bland, I discovered one of the most delicious things I have ever tasted - and it wasnt bland to say the least, just not sweat-inducing. Seeni sambol, a fragrant, Sri Lankan caramelized onion jam, turned out to be incredible on everything from hoppers to curries, and could turn a pretty plain bowl of red rice into something remarkably special. I became totally obsessed with this sambol and it was the very first thing I attempted to make when I came home. I really cannot tell you enough how awesome this stuff is. Do yourself a favour and make a batch soon! The most memorable experience I had in Sri Lanka was learning to cook traditional recipes with two women in the local village. It was likely one of the most eye-opening culinary experiences Ive ever had - not only learning from such passionate and experienced cooks, but seeing their traditional kitchen, tools, and techniques really inspired me. Take their stove, for example. A large clay bench with large mounds molded into it held the earthenware pots in place, and the heat underneath was adjusted by adding more sticks to the fire, or taking them away. Genius. Above the stove was a large wooden wrack to hang beans, seeds, and herbs for fast drying, which I thought was a brilliant way to take advantage of the residual heat. Ingredients were prepped on the floor, since its cooler down there, and also nice to sit while youre working. The knife to cut veggies was actually attached to a stool, and instead of holding the blade, you hold the vegetables and basically drop them on top, slicing them in the air to fall onto a grass mat. The sambol was made by grinding all the ingredients together on a huge flat stone designed specifically for this task, and as such took all of ten seconds to prepare. Spoons were made from dried coconut shells. The plates were made of woven grass, topped with fresh lotus leaves from the nearby creek. The leaves protected the plates from the saucy curries, and when you were finished your meal, youd discard the leaf into the compost, so that there was literally nothing to wash! I mean. This day made me take a long hard look at how much stuff I use in the kitchen. Water, electricity, appliances - these women were literally using nothing but things from the earth around them and it made me wonder how weve come so far from that connection. Cooking has become so overblown, and it was this experience that reminded me to cook simpler and eat simpler. Get closer to the earth. I dont have some grand solution, but its food for thought. I’ll share a few notes on the recipes… You will likely think Ive lost my mind when you begin the task of slicing two pounds of onions (#worthit), but I promise you it is the correct amount, and youll see that it cooks down to nearly nothing. I tried half this amount my first time and it just simply wasnt enough. If youre going to go for this, you may as well make a batch that will last you at least a few meals, right? Fresh curry leaves are a definite preference for this recipe, but Ive never been able to find them here in Copenhagen so I used dried. Theyre not great, but better than nothing. If you dont want to gnaw on whole spices or curry leaves you can remove them after the seeni sambol is cooked, but it can be a bit of a treasure hunt situation, just sayin. Once Ive smashed the cardamom pods, I like to remove the outer skin and just add the inner seeds to the spics mix. I tend to leaves the cloves and curry leaves in since I like those bursts of flavour. The pol sambol recipe Ive written here is admittedly, a wimps version. Ill admit that I can only tolerate spice until it begins to overwhelm the other flavours in the food, so mine is strong but still edible on its own. I invite you to go with your instincts on this one and dial up the heat to suit your tastes. If you can find freshly grated coconut (or a fresh coconut that you can grate yourself) by all means use that instead of the desiccated variety! Some versions of pol sambol include curry leaves, but because I only had dried I left them out. If you can find fresh ones, add about a sprig for this recipe, and crush them well before incorporating. As far as serving these two sensational sambols go, they are pretty much great with All. The. Things. Rice dishes, curries, stews, soups, wraps, sandwiches, salads...I mean it! Once you taste them Im confident youll find infinite uses for them. The first photo is of steamed brown rice and the Kale Mallung recipe that I wrote from the last Sri Lankan post - still a major fav around here. I love this meal for breakfast with a poached egg, lots of seeni sambol and, ahem, lightly sprinkled with the pol sambol.     Print recipe     Seeni Sambol Makes 1 heaping cup /­­ 300ml Ingredients: 2 lb. /­­ 900g red onions 1/­­4 cup /­­ 60ml coconut oil 10 green cardamom pods 8 cloves 3 Tbsp. dried curry leaves (or 2 sprigs fresh curry leaves if you can find them!) 1 cinnamon stick 2 tsp. fine sea salt 2 tsp. coconut sugar Directions: 1. Peel and slice the onions. 2. Pound the cardamom pods in a mortar and pestle until they have split open. You can remove the outer skin and just save the seeds inside, but its only if you dont like eating the exterior. 3. Place a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat and melt the coconut oil. Add the cardamom pods, cloves, curry leaves, and cinnamon stick. Stir and cook until fragrant, about 3-4 minutes. Add the onions, salt and sugar, stir very well to coat and cook uncovered, stirring every couple minutes until the onions have completely melted down - this can take anywhere from 30-45 minutes. Be patient and enjoy the process! 4. Transfer seeni sambol to a glass jar and store in the fridge for up to one month. Remove from fridge at least half an hour before serving, as the coconut oil will cause the sambol to solidify in the fridge.   Pol Sambol Makes 4 cups /­­ 1 liter Ingredients: 2 cups /­­ 180g desiccated coconut 1/­­2 cup /­­ 125 ml warm water or coconut water 1 clove garlic 2 shallots or small red onions 1-3 red chilies (or as many as you think you can handle!) I used fresh Thai chilies 1 tsp. fine grain sea salt 1/­­2 – 1 tsp. chili powder (or as much as you think you can handle!) juice of 1 lime Directions: 1. Combine the desiccated coconut with the water and stir thoroughly to combine. Let sit for 15-30 minutes until softened. 2. Place the garlic in a food processor and blend to finely mince. Roughly slice shallots and chili, and place them in the food processor with the garlic and blend to mince.  Add the softened coconut, salt, chili powder and lime juice. Blend on high to fully incorporate. Taste and adjust seasoning if desired.   A huge thanks to Cinnamon Hotels and Resorts  and Sri Lankan Airlines for making this incredible trip possible! Show me your sambols on Instagram: #MNRsambol The post Sensational Sweet and Spicy Sambols appeared first on My New Roots.

Brownie Nut Butter Cups

April 6 2016 VegKitchen 

Brownie Nut Butter Cups Weve taken a look at the best thing ever (also known as peanut butter cups) and gone one step further, replacing the chocolate candy bottom with a mini brownie. Youll realize what a brilliant idea it was when you get your fingers on (and sink your teeth into) the resulting chewy, super rich goodness! Recipe and photo from

VIDEO: Genius Ways to Use Kitchen Scraps

January 22 2016 Oh My Veggies 

Dont throw those beet greens away! The Food Network shows how to put kitchen scraps to use in 6 brilliant ways, including carrot-top pesto and pickled broccoli stems.

Green Christmas 2015

December 19 2015 Green Kitchen Stories 

Answering questions about vegetarian Christmas food has almost become a December tradition for us. It seems like a lot of people are looking for more plant based options for their holiday celebrations, regardless if they are vegetarians or not. I wish we had an awesome vegetarian version of Swedish meatballs or a brilliant vegetarian Christmas sausage recipe to send over, whenever we are asked. But truth be told, we usually keep things simpler in our family. One of our favourite things to bring to a Christmas table is a flavourful salad with some cooked quinoa, buckwheat or millet, a selection of roasted vegetables, greens, nuts and fruit. It might sound boring with a salad but it always look very colourful and festive and really stand out from all the bread, gravy and sauces. When Norwegian newspaper DN asked us to create a couple of vegetarian Christmas recipes for their weekend magazine D2, a holiday salad was of course on the menu. But we also included an updated version of our old mushroom loaf recipe with spinach, brown rice and hazelnuts, as a delicious green main dish. Along with our gluten free beet buns, a red cabbage and grape salad and a Christmas spiced chocolate mousse that is dead-easy to make. And now, with Christmas just around the corner, we are also sharing all those recipes here, for all of you that don’t speak Norwegian. Choose one dish or make the entire menu. And if you are looking for more Christmas recipes, you can have a look through our archive. Happy holidays! Millet, Persimmon & Brussels Sprout Salad Serves 4 As I mentioned above, we love hearty salads that balances warm and cold ingredients, have a variety of textures and a touch of sweetness. This Christmas salad with oven roasted Brussels sprouts, kale and persimmons has all that. The millet makes it into more of a main dish than just a salad and the honey Dijon dressing adds delicious Christmassy flavours. If you are not cooking for vegans, some feta cheese or goat’s cheese would also be delicious in this. Salad ingredients 300 g oven roasted brussels sprout 1 tbsp olive oil 1/­­4 tsp sea salt 1 cup /­­ 200 g uncooked millet (or quinoa) 2 large leaves kale, stems removed 1 persimmon or orange, sliced 1 cup /­­ 125 g roasted walnuts or pecan nuts 1 handful pomegranate seeds Mustard dressing 4 tbsp cold-pressed olive oil 1 tbsp Dijon mustard 1 tbsp quality honey 2-3 tbsp lemon juice, to taste a pinch sea salt and pepper Preheat the oven to 200°C /­­ 400°F. Rinse the Brussels sprouts, remove the outer leaf, cut off the end and slice them in halves. Place in an ovenproof dish, drizzle with olive oil and salt and toss with your hands. Place in the oven and bake for about 20 minutes or until soft and with golden and crispy edges. Rinse the millet in hot water and then cook it according to the packaging. Prepare the dressing by whisking all ingredients in a small bowl. Chop the kale coarsely and place in a salad bowl, pour over the dressing and use your hands to massage the leaves, making sure every single kale leaf is covered in dressing. Add the cooked millet and toss to combine. Then add persimmon, walnuts and a sprinkle of pomegranate seeds on top.   Mushroom, Rice & Hazelnut Loaf Makes 1 loaf This delicious Christmas loaf is filled with flavour from mushrooms, spinach and hazelnuts and a very satisfying thanks to the rice. Its perfect to make for Christmas as a vegetarian main dish. We love the look of the whole hazelnuts inside the loaf but you can chop them coarsely to make it even easier to cut the slices. 1/­­2 cup /­­ 150 ml whole grain rice, any colour (we used red) 1 cup /­­ 300 ml water a pinch sea salt 2 tbsp cold-pressed coconut oil, butter or olive oil 1 large onion 2 garlic cloves 10 oz /­­ 300 g mushrooms 1 sprig rosemary 2 sprigs thyme sea salt and black pepper 7 oz /­­ 200 g spinach (fresh or frozen, thawed) 4 eggs 1/­­3 cup /­­ 100 ml unsweetened plant milk or regular milk sea salt and black pepper 1/­­4 tsp ground nutmeg 3.5 oz /­­ 100 g hazelnuts (if allergic to nuts, use sunflower seeds or simply skip them), whole or coarsely chopped Preheat the oven to 400°F /­­ 200°C. Place the rice in a sieve and rinse with water. Then place in a saucepan with water and salt. Bring to a boil, lower the heat to a bare simmer and let cook for 30-40 minutes (check the specific cooking time on the package). Clean the mushrooms with a soft brush, if they are very dirty you can wash them with a little water and dry well. Slice the stem and the cap lengthwise into large slices. Heat oil in a skillet on medium-high heat, add garlic and onion and fry until fragrant. Then add mushrooms, rosemary, thyme salt and pepper and let fry for 2-3 minutes until browned on one side, then stir to flip side. Fry for a couple more minutes and then add spinach, stir around until wilted and pour into a bowl. In a separate bowl whisk the eggs with milk, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Add hazelnuts, cooked rice and the mushroom and spinach mixture and combine. Grease a loaf pan or cover it in baking paper. Pour the loaf mixture into the pan, place in the oven and bake for 45 minutes. Let cool slightly to allow the loaf to set. Carefully flip the loaf out of the pan. Use a sharp knife when slicing it, we usually do 1-2 cm slices. Enjoy!   Crispy Red Cabbage & Grape Salad Serves 4-6 We make this crunchy salad as a fresh and simple side to all the richer dishes. It has a stunning colour and is very quick and easy. We add grapes for sweetness but orange slices would also be delicious. You could also add a tablespoon of maple syrup if you prefer it a little sweeter. 1 small or 1/­­2 large red cabbage (1 lb /­­ 450 g) 20 red grapes 1/­­4 red onion 1 large handful parsley  Dressing: juice from 1/­­2 lemon 2 tbsp olive oil sea salt and pepper Use a mandolin or a sharp knife to slice red cabbage and onion thinly. Cut the grapes in half and remove the seeds. Chop the parsley coarsely. Toss everything in a bowl. Mix the dressing and pour over the salad. Serve in a bowl or in a wide jar.   Gluten-Free Beet Buns These delicious mini bread are so ideal on a Christmas table with their cute colour and slightly sweet flavour. Even if you are not gluten intolerant you will love these for their simplicity. Plus, it’s a nice gesture if you have guests with intolerances coming over. We posted the recipe for these buns here a while back. We added in a 1 tsp caraway seeds for extra flavour in this batch. Dark Chocolate Christmas Mousse Serves 4 The technique for this chocolate mousse was invented by the french scientist Hervé. The remarkable thing is that you only need dark chocolate and a liquid - it even works with water! The secret is to simply whisk air into the melted chocolate and the result is a creamy mousse with an intense chocolate flavour. Here, we are however making it with milk and gingerbread spices for a Christmas twist. Since chocolate is the main ingredient, make sure to choose good quality. 3/­­4 cup /­­ 200 ml plant milk of choice 1 pinch clove 1/­­4 tsp ginger 1/­­4 tsp cardamom 1/­­2 tsp cinnamon 7 oz /­­ 200 g dark chocolate (70%) Topping 4 tbsp greek yogurt or whipped cream pomegranate seeds 1 tsp powdered sugar, optional Create a water-bath by filling a sauce pan with 5 cm water and placing it on the stove on medium heat with a heatproof bowl on top (steel or glass bowl works best). Add milk and spices to the bowl. Chop the chocolate coarsely then add it to the milk. Stir a few times with a spatula while the chocolate is melting in the milk, then fill a large mixing bowl halfway with ice. Move the bowl of melted chocolate from the heat to the ice bath and start beating it vigorously with a hand whisk for about 3-4 minutes. At first it will look very loose and bubbly but after a while it will start to feel more like when you are whipping cream, fine lines will appear as you run the whisk through the chocolate and it starts looking like a mousse. Use a spoon to carefully pour or divide the mousse into 4 desert glasses that you store in the fridge. Its easily happened to overmix the chocolate the first time - only 30 seconds too much and it firms up so you cant pour it and eventually becomes grainy. In that case, simply bring it back to the heat, let it melt entirely and then place it back on the ice and start whisking again. Serve with a dollop of yogurt or cream and a sprinkle of pomegranate seeds. You can dust a little powdered sugar on top just for the look of it. ******** PS! We are actually not having any of these dishes for Christmas as we are currently in Thailand on a no-work holiday. The only time we have been reminded of Christmas here was when a bunch of monkeys broke into our house and stole some of the Christmas gifts that we had brought for Elsa! So now we are looking for a monkey wearing a striped dress and some glitter nail polish.

Cauliflower Buns & Bagels

September 19 2015 My New Roots 

Cauliflower Buns & Bagels You guys. Cauliflower. Buns. I am crazy stoked about this. The idea for these simply brilliant, delicious, and totally surprising rolls came from my good friend Sophie, a vibrant, health-conscious lady that I actually met through my mothers group. We quickly bonded over a shared love of cooking and raising healthy kids, so it didnt take long before we were meeting up outside of the group for smoothie dates and trading kitchen secrets. A couple months ago she mentioned making bread out of blended cauliflower and I thought it was just about the neatest idea Id heard in a while, especially since my son and I love starchy baked anything, and Im always keen to have a wide range of options. I set out to make my own version and this was the happy result. Despite being totally flour-free, these buns are surprisingly light and fluffy. They taste of cauliflower (or should I say, cauliflour? HA!), but the garlic powder takes them in a different direction so that you dont feel like youre just eating a ball of blended cruciferous. I added nutritional yeast as well, which lends a wonderful cheesiness along with its B-vitamins, and almond meal for protein, fat and flavour. A sprinkling of dried onions or sesame seeds on top also add a great taste and texture. The psyllium husk is not totally necessary, but the buns are a little drier with this addition, plus without it, they are nearly impossible to slice without breaking. I prefer them baked with just eggs - but I also like just scarfing these, no slicing please. To answer the question many of you will inevitably ask me, yes, I made a vegan version of these, but sadly, they did not work. I replaced the eggs with psyllium husk exclusively and the buns practically melted into weird cauli-puddles (bizarro!). And as psyllium contributes a rather rubbery texture, I also found that using it as a binder instead of eggs yielded an unappetizing consistency - most certainly un-bread like. If any of you are up for the challenge, please experiment and let me know in the comments. Id love to post a vegan alternative! One thing I should bring up is that these buns, despite tasting really good even a few days after baking, begin to smell rather sulfuric (a.k.a. fart-y). I cant even tell you the looks I got after opening my lunchbox stocked with cauliflower buns on an airplane a couple weeks ago. It wasnt me! It was the buns! This is due to the naturally-occurring and health promoting sulfur in the cauliflower. Nothing to worry about, but I thought it begged mentioning so that you know what to expect, and dont jump to the conclusion that the buns have spoiled. Or that you keep the buns in a tightly sealed container and open it in a confined public space. If you can time your baking of these to serve with a meal, I suggest you do so, as they are so delicious fresh from the oven, cooled just slightly, with a slather of good-quality butter. Yes, butter. Id go so far as to say that its important to the recipe because the buns have very little fat in them, so butter really takes the taste experience to the next level of yum.     Print recipe     Cauliflower Buns & Bagels Makes 12-16 buns or bagels Ingredients: 1 large cauliflower (1200g) 1/­­4 cup /­­ 20g almond meal 1/­­4 cup /­­ 20g nutritional yeast 1 1/­­2 tsp. fine sea salt 1/­­2 tsp. garlic powder 2 large organic eggs 1 Tbsp. dried onions or sesame seeds 1 Tbsp. psyllium husk (optional, will make the buns drier) Directions: 1. Wash and chop cauliflower into chunks. Place in a food processor and blend until as fine as possible (you may need to do this in several batches as the cauliflower wont process if the machine is too full). Transfer cauliflower to a large mixing bowl. Add the almond meal, nutritional yeast, salt, garlic powder and psyllium husk, if using. Stir very well to combine. 2. Preheat oven to 400°F/­­200°C. 3. Whisk eggs together in a separate bowl. Add the eggs to the cauliflower mixture and stir until the dough is moist and will hold together. 4. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Taking baseball-sized amounts of dough, squeeze them into a rough ball shape, then drop them from about 1 foot (30cm) onto the baking sheet (this helps to compact them). If you want to make bagels, simply use your finger to poke a hole in the center and shape the rest with your hands. Sprinkle the tops with the dried onion or sesame seeds and place in the oven. Bake for 20-30 minutes until the buns are golden brown around the edges. Enjoy warm with butter, and store leftovers in the fridge for 3-4 days.   Give this recipe a shot you guys – especially if you are skeptical! Love and buns, Sarah B Show me your buns! #MNRcauliflowerbuns *   *   *   *   *   * Hey guys! I have a couple new interviews up online if you’d like to check them out… Remarkable Magazine Psycle London

Herby Picnic Potato Salad

September 1 2015 Green Kitchen Stories 

Herby Picnic Potato Salad A couple of weeks ago we had a little picnic for our baby boy with family and a few close friends. It was kind of a combined (very delayed) Welcome-to-the-World-Isac and Happy-First-Birthday celebration and it turned out to be a real gem of a day. It has basically been raining in Sweden all summer, but this day was filled with sunshine, good food, laughter and lots of chubby babies. Despite having written two cookbooks, we actually rarely cook for our friends. Instead we prefer going the picnic route, having everyone bringing something to share. It just makes it a lot easier to plan these kind of things instead of having to do everything yourself. It also makes for a more fun and spontaneous event. We did actually end up cooking quite a lot anyway for this picnic. We made a few picnic pies, two monster versions of our Blueberry Cake (not shattered this time) and an adapted version of the potato salad from Sara Fortes latest book Bowl+Spoon. We got to read her book manuscript before it was published as we were asked to write a little quote for the back. Here is what we wrote: We love that Saras recipes are always focused on real ingredients, simple to prepare, and undoubtedly delicious. The bowl theme is brilliant and exactly how we prefer to eat our everyday meals. Apart from a few other favourites in the book, we have been making different versions of Saras potato salad at least five times this summer. Its incredibly flavourful with lots of fresh herbs and capers, and also has a tangy zing from white wine vinegar. The original recipe calls for hard-boiled eggs and its an excellent combo, but we have also been playing with other (vegan) sources of protein. One time we tried beluga lentils and here we are using chickpeas. We added kale and apple to make it less of a side dish and more of a complete meal. As the name implies, this is great to pack on a picnic but it is also a good indoor meal. And when your kids are tired of having potato salad for the fifth time, you can fry the leftovers in a pan into a quick and flavourful hash. Herby Picnic Potato Salad with Kale, Apple & Chickpeas Serves 6 Recipe adapted from Bowl+Spoon by Sara & Hugh Forte. We usually make an extra large (almost double) batch of the vinaigrette because it’s so good. If your white wine vinegar is very sweet, you can add some lemon juice for extra zing. 2 pounds/­­1 kg small new potatoes Coarse Herb Vinaigrette 3 tbsp pickled capers 2 spring onions or green onions 2 cups loosely packed herbs (a mix of chives, parsley, basil and top greens from the celery) 2 tbsp white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar 1/­­3 cup cold pressed oil sea salt and black pepper, to taste 2 apples, diced 3 celery stalks (save the top greens for the vinaigrette), finely diced 2 leaves kale, chard or spinach, chopped 1 can (14 oz/­­400 g) cooked chickpeas, rinsed Put the potatoes in a large pot, cover them with water and bring the water to a boil. Boil for 12-15 minutes until they are cooked through but not falling apart - just until you can easily pierce a sharp knife through the center. Drain and set aside to cool. In a food processor, blitz capers and their brine, onions, basil, parsley, chives, celery greens, vinegar, lemon juice, oil, salt and pepper until you get a coarse vinaigrette. Quarter the potatoes and collect them in a larger mixing bowl. Pour the vinaigrette over the just-cooled potatoes and gently toss to coat. It will look like a lot of dressing, but the potatoes soak it up as they sit. Stir celery, apples, kale and chickpeas into the potatoes. Taste for salt and pepper. Serve at room temperature.

Vegan Texas Sheet Cake for Two (eat chocolate: feel better. . . and Frankie's first year)

July 20 2015 Vegan Thyme 

Vegan Texas Sheet Cake for Two (eat chocolate: feel better. . . and Frankie's first year) Well. I needed chocolate. You know how when you usually bake a Texas Sheet Cake, you're obliged to bake with an overly large thirteen inch cake pan--with a TON of leftover cake mocking you the rest of the week? (Nibbling away here and there until five more pounds creep up on you? Seriously, now that I'm in the "over fifty" range--if I look at a cake, I can feel my thighs growing.) Not so with this cake. It takes a six-inch round springform pan, less temptation--more reason to love, and viola: cake for two! Perhaps a more appropriate name for it would be: Rhode Island Chocolate Sheet Cake. (Okay, I have dibs on this name for my future restaurant.)  It's delicious, moist, chocolate-y, nutty and cinnamon-y. Pure delish. Serve it with some vegan ice cream and really get your dessert fix on. But not five pounds worth, 'kay? I found a wonderful little baking book: Dessert for Two by Christina Lane in the book store quite by accident a few weeks back (or maybe the book found me). Although not vegan in its design, you know I've never met a non-vegan recipe I couldn't veganize--I'll be busy baking from this book for  awhile.  **The summer here in St. Louis, thus far, has been brutal and awful.  This heat and humidity: OMG. It's unbearable. Call me weak. Say whatever you want.  I am not a lover of July in St. Louis. Period. It's enough to drive a person mad. Mad I tell you! Well. Back to this cake. For obvious reasons, the magnetic pull of "chocolate" drew me right to this recipe first. So. Happy. I found a six-inch round springform pan at JoAnn's of all places!  (I was in there to buy fabric, I swear! But you know how you have to wait in the "que" with your number to be called for your fabric cutting, um yeah. That's when even MORE money leaves your hands. It's a brilliant strategy. But sneaky, too.)   So cute to bake a mini-cake version of one of my all-time favorite chocolate cake recipes. Even better, the cake pan and all went right into the fridge afterwards for storing.  Well our little Frankenstein turned one this weekend. We have come so far. And have no regrets. (Maybe some sleepless nights owing to the utter insanity a puppy reigns over a house for the first couple of months: new pillows, new rugs, new sofa--not yet, but soon!)--but other than that, we really have no regrets. And as for her sissy's take on the matter, well. . . we think she adores her, too.  Frankie reminds us that life is one big flippy-floppy. (Her toy.) Some days she loves it, some days not so much. Dr. Thyme and I have discussed the fact that no matter what--however she turns out--it is a direct reflection of us. Which is sort of scary when you think about it. We've always rescued dogs in the past. What we got is what we got. With a lot of unconditional love and care, dogs are so resilient, they usually find that being around humans is okay after all. When you are all a dog knows, and no other influences have affected her, well, you pray all the love and corrections take, is all. With a puppy, you are shaping the world for them. You are what they see in humanity: the good days, the bad days and the stuff in between. She is a mommy's girl for sure. If I leave the room--and the back of the house is baby-gated off--she starts to whine. When I was gone visiting my sister, Dr. Thyme told me she'd sit at the baby gate in the evenings looking for me to come back. Precious.  (But you know, I sort of needed my "breaks".)  This weekend, I stopped in the big box pet store and wouldn't you know it, they were having a dog adoption event. Dammit. I was trying to walk in with one eye on the treats section, but my other eye caught the face of a terrier mix--adult dog, "just surrendered". I had to stop and ask: what's this one's story. And was told two were surrendered, and that the other was already adopted out. I hung out over the cage and as people passed by and if they showed the least bit of interest, I'd say, This is an awesome dog--you can tell he's super smart and super sweet: he'd make the perfect companion! I was smitten with the little guy. Totally smitten. But one must know one's limitations. And we do. I suppose in my own way, I was re-visiting the days when our home was bigger and our dog count was seven--eight! We aren't in our thirties and forties any more, but fifties and sixties. Those days of a canine "ranch" are over. But it doesn't mean we won't rescue again. We have sworn no more puppies after Frankie. She was our first Pyr puppy and perhaps our last. (Never say "never", but it has been a LONG road, trust me, and there's still more to go because that puppy Pyr doesn't seem to want to let go, thus her nickname: Frankenstein.) Last week she had her first "spa" day. I was VERY concerned/­­worried/­­nervous. She can be a pill if you try to handle her too much. I mean, those TEETH! Well, I took both Pyr girls in for a once over. (Our oldest girl has short hair and bless her heart, it left the day for us together and we had a spa day in the back yard).  When I finally got the call that the big girls were "ready" at four in the afternoon, I asked the groomer, "Well, are you okay?. . . Can we come back?" She laughed and said they both did fine and yes! I got there to find Frankie and her sissy had the run of the place--plus the groomer's cat on hand! Frankie had never seen a cat--and I said, "How'd that go--with the cat?" She said Frankie got on her front paws looking for a new playmate, the cat ignored her, of course, but that was about it. Awww.  Well, baby girl, I hope you're happy and that you have another fifteen years ahead of you.  We love you to pieces and don't change a thing. Um, maybe you could work on the teeth thing, but other than that--Love You! Vegan Texas Sheet Cake for Two (*adapted from Desserts for Two by Christina Lane) 1/­­4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour 1/­­4 cup spelt flour 5 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder 1/­­4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/­­2 teaspoon baking soda 2 tablespoons water plus 2 teaspoons ground flax (for the egg) 1/­­3 cup canola oil 1/­­2 cup sugar 1/­­3 cup coconut milk plus 1 teaspoon vinegar  1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 tablespoon brewed coffee 1/­­3 cup chopped pecans (divided) for frosting 2 tablespoons vegan butter 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder 1 tablespoon coconut milk  1-2 cups powdered sugar left over chopped pecans Preheat oven to 350. Spray 6-inch springform pan with nonstick baking spray. (Make sure you place your pan on a cookie sheet in the oven in case of spills--I didn't have that problem, but just wanted you to know. I have a Wilton springform pan.) Whisk together the dry ingredients--except sugar. Add oil and sugar in another bowl and stir until well blended. Add flax egg, vanilla extract and stir until combined. Add half the chopped pecans. Add dry ingredients to the wet and mix well--until dry ingredients are moist. Pour batter into pan. Bake 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in middle comes out with a few crumbs on it. Remove cake to cool 15 minutes before adding frosting.  While cake bakes, prepare frosting. Add all ingredients to small saucepan, over low heat. Whisk together well until the butter begins to melt. Keep whisking until mixture becomes smooth. If you find you need to add more or less sugar, do so! Keep tasting. **I found I needed to add more sugar and bit more cocoa to get just the right flavor. And NOTE: the frosting thickens up as it sits. SO don't panic if you think it's too runny--you'll want it a bit runny. Once cake is cooled, pour frosting over. Allow to cool about an hour before slicing. Store in fridge--the two pieces of leftovers! Enjoy!


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