Happy soon to be St. Patrick’s Day! Let’s celebrate with some yumminess. In the past I’ve done green food like these pancakes, and these muffins, and vegan Irish cream. This year we’re focusing on the potato. Oh how I love a potato. I’m going to play up the awesomeness of the Yukon Gold potato in this variation of Colcannon, or mashed potatoes with green stuff if you aren’t Irish.
Traditionally Colcannon is as Irish dish made from mashed potatoes with kale or cabbage folded in. It is often perked up with scallions or leeks. For this vegan variation I am sautéing leeks and folding them in, and garnishing with kale chips. It’s pretty, yummy, and my girls love to pick the kale chips off the top. Honestly, that’s the only part they eat. I think I have the only kids in the world who won’t eat mashed potatoes.
Kale chips are a huge hit in our house, but they shatter and always leave tiny little pieces at the bottom of the container. This is a perfect way to use them up. And a perfect excuse to try making kale chips if you haven’t yet.
The twist in this recipe is adding the salt and vinegar to the cooking water for the potatoes. When you do this the potatoes are flavored from the inside out and each and every bite becomes a perfectly seasoned flavor bomb.
1 1/2 lbs yukon gold potatoes cut into 1/4 cubes
2 tsp kosher salt
2 tsp white vinegar
1 large leek cut lengthwise, and then into 1/4 half moons
As I’ve been exploring balancing flavors, and trying new food combinations I have truly come to love pickled red onions. Pickled everything really, but these are one of my favorites. It is not one of those ingredients that brings and item into focus when I see it on a menu. I feel it pairs particularly well with things that are sweet. Think sandwiches with roasted vegetables and their inherent sweetness that needs a bit of acidity for balance. Yummy. I made this particular batch to go with harissa roasted sweet potatoes. I also threw on some roasted salted pecans, and some candied pine nuts. It was yummy. This recipe is adapted from Bobby Flay, one if his 3000 recipes for pickled red onions.
Pickled Red Onions
1 1/2 cups white vinegar
1/4 cup water
2 TBL granulated sugar
1 TBL kosher salt
1 large red onion, thinly sliced
Combine vinegar, water, sugar, and salt in a small saucepan and bring to a boil.
Remove from heat, stir, and allow to cool for about 10 minutes.
Place the onion in a heat safe container with a lid, then poor the hot vinegar mixture over the onions.
Cover and allow onions to sit for at least an hour, up to 4 days
Remove from liquid and use to top everything from sandwiches to sweet potatoes.
Brunch is in. Especially with two small children, it is much easier time to get together with friends than dinner. So, when in need of a brunch item, here is a trusty quiche. I have done a post on quiche before if you want the ins and out, the dos and don’ts check it out. For this beauty I decided to do crustless for a few reasons. One: I didn’t have time to make a crust; two: we were going to be eating the quiche with lots of buttery pastries and I thought it would be best to cut simple carbs and added fat where it wasn’t needed. I do love a good crust, but for this instance it was unnecessary.
This is a rich, savory quiche, stuffed with vegetables and topped with a bit of cheese. It has an added bonus of being gluten free. It was super fast, one pan, and traveled perfectly to our friends where we were having brunch.
2 TBL olive oil
1 large yellow or white onion, sliced
1 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
1/2 teaspoon pepper, plus more to taste
A few tablespoons chopped fresh herbs, or a few teaspoons dried herbs
3 to 4 cups chopped vegetables (I used Kale, Mushrooms, and zucchini)
6 large eggs
1 1/2 cups milk (I used unsweetened plain almond milk)
1 cup grated cheese (I used goat guda)
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
Heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat.
Add the olive oil and swirl to coat the bottom and sides of the skillet.
Add the onion slices and sprinkle a bit of salt and pepper over them. Cook the onions until they are golden-brown and starting to caramelize, about 10 minutes.
Add the other vegetables and cook until liquid has been released and evaporated, 5 more minutes or so.
Remove the pan from the heat and spread the vegetables evenly across the bottom of the skillet.
In a bowl whisk the eggs and milk together until everything is uniformly yellow.
Add remaining salt, pepper, and any herbs you are using and whisk to combine.
Pour the egg mixture over the vegetable.
Sprinkle with grated cheese in an even layer over the top.
Transfer the quiche to the oven and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Once the surface is lightly brown all the way across and it is firm in the middle, it’s fully cooked.
Let the quiche cool for about 20 minutes, then slice into wedges.
We eat a good amount of kale; I know, so trendy. However, I actually love the stuff. Eating all that kale, and being me, I have had a hard time throwing away all the stems. If you compost maybe it doesn’t hurt so bad, but I live someplace where that isn’t a possibility right now, and it hurts to waste. When I heard about kale stem pesto a light bulb went off for me. The perfect, and delicious way to use up my kale stems. This is a super simple recipe that comes together in a flash. I’m leaving it up to you for how you want to use it. So far we have done a kale stem pesto pasta with sauteed vegetables, put it in a power bowl, topped homemade veggie burgers, and I have been stirring it into vegenaise for my sandwiches. How will you use it?
Kale Stem and Sun-dried Tomato Pesto
2 cups roughly chopped kale stems, about 4oz
1 cup toasted walnuts, about 3.5 oz
2 medium cloves garlic
1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes in oil
1 tsp salt
Combine ingredients in a food processor and blend until a smooth paste forms.
Store in a covered container in the refrigerator until you are ready to use.
Happy Memorial Day Weekend everyone! I have just the thing to top those veggie burgers to jazz them up with minimal effort, or to serve as a beautiful side. This delightful cabbage and apple slaw. It is pictured here over a store bought veggie burger (field roast). I used store bought as they hold up better on the grill, at least compared to the homemade burgers I make.
This slaw is easy, beautiful, quick, and can feed a crowd and will please the majority of eaters. My 9 month old loved the cabbage and even my picky toddler tried it.
To make your slaw instagramable rinse it a few times in cold water before mixing with the vinaigrette, and only toss together right before serving. The rinse step is totally useless for taste, but makes it prettier as the cabbage doesn’t bleed its color as much if rinsed.
Red Cabbage and Green Apple Slaw
1 1/2 TBL honey, or agave if vegan
juice from half a lemon, about 1 TBL
1 TBL white vinegar
1 TBL olive oil
2 TBL dijon mustard
salt to taste
1/2 a small head purple cabbage, thinly sliced
1/2 green apple,cut into thin stripes
Whisk together the honey, lemon juice, vinegar, oil, mustard, and salt.
Summer decided to stop by this week on the East Coast and it’s been hot! I hope it isn’t a preview of real summer; I’m not someone who enjoys the heat. However, now that that it has calmed down to seasonably warm I am a happy lady. It is perfect outside for picnicking and barbecuing. We just had our first family cookout last night. It was lovely! The girls played and ate a bit and my husband and I both got to sit and eat a leisurely dinner. I made this yummy potato salad and had veggie burgers on the grill.
This potato salad is a riff off of a very classic potato salad. I used J. Kenji López-Alt’s recipe from his cookbook The Food Lab. I amcompletely slightly obsessed with Kenji, or as I call him, my BFF. The idea of using science and the actual scientific process to make better food is my happy place. Not a place I use myself, but one I like to read about. Anyway, I digress. He has some super tricks and I have used them as well as most of his recipe for potato salad. I hope you enjoy.
This doesn’t make a very large batch, a side for maybe 4 people. It is easily doubled or tripled for a crowd.
Vegan Potato Salad
Adapted from The Food Lab cookbook
1 1/2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 3/4 inch cubes
2 tsp sugar
4 tsp white vinegar, divided
1 rib celery, finely diced (about 1/4 cup)
2 TBL finely minced red onion
1 scallions, green parts only, thinly sliced (optional)
2 TBL fresh parsley leaves, washed and minced (optional)
2 tsp whole grain mustard (more or less to taste)
1 tsp dijon mustard
1/3 cup vegenaise or other vegan mayonnaise
Fresh ground black pepper
Place cubed potatoes in a large saucepan, cover with water to 1″ above teh potatoes.
It is really feeling like spring might stick around here on the East Coast. I’m pretty happy about it. My littles are loving the park and I am loving the sunshine! For Earth Day we are focusing on treating the Earth with respect. Also an everyday lesson, especially with a two year old! Wolfie is a sweet, emphatic kid, however, she is two. We are constantly working on how our actions affect others, and the world around us. Something we should all probably think about more often.
To celebrate Earth Day we are eating lots of lovely, easy to make, flavorful, and vegetable forward meals. This is one of my old favorites with a few extras to jazz it up. I hope you like to additions.
Vegan Peanut Noodle Salad
1 package Tempeh cut into 1″ cubes
2 TBL olive oil
2 TBL tamari
1 tsp chili powder
8.8 oz dried Udon noodles cooked according to package directions, drained, and cooled to room temperature
1/2 cup water reserved from cooking noodles
1/2 cup peanut butter
2 TBL lime juice
3 TBL brown sugar
2 TBL tamari
2 medium cloves garlic, minced
1/2′ pice of ginger, minced
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 1/2 cups sugar snap peas
1/2 cup julienned red pepper
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup minced fresh cilantro
Heat a large case iron skillet over medium high heat.
Add oil, swirl to coat the bottom of the pan, and add the tempeh.
Cook, stirring occasionally until golden brown on all sides, 5-7 minutes.
Turn off the heat and drizzle the tamari over the tempeh, stir, and sprinkle the chili powder over the tempeh, stir and set aside.
In a large bowl combine the reserved cooking liquid, peanut butter, lime juice, brown sugar, tamari, and red pepper flakes whisking to combine.
Add the cooked noodles and toss to coat with dressing.
Add sugar snap peas, red pepper, scallions, and cilantro tossing to combine.
Top with tempeh croutons and serve at room temperature or cold.
Using what you have on hand can be a struggle, especially with it is just a little of this and a little of that from previous recipes. One trick I love is to let go of preconceived notions of making something specific, and just make something that tastes good. I have a version of this rice, bean, and vegetable mixture regularly as I frequently have leftover rice, beans, and some odds and ends of vegetables. You can jazz it up with herbs and spices, or keep it simple like this version. I love the simplicity and deliciousness of a good olive oil, a little nutritional yeast, and some big, crunchy salt.
Rice, Beans, and Greens -How to use leftovers for a quick and satisfying meal
1 TBL oil for cooking
1 small onion, sliced
4 mushrooms, sliced
1 cup cooked rice (mine was leftover from takeout Indian)
3/4 cup cooked kidney beans (or other bean of choice)
2 cups fresh spinach (or other greens)
1 TBL nutritional yeast
1 TBL good olive oil
Heat a medium skillet over medium high heat.
Add oil, and saute onion and mushrooms until just softened, about 3 minutes.
Add the rice, kidney beans, and spinach and cook until spinach is wilted and rice and beans are hot.
Sprinkle on nutritional yeast, drizzle the oil, and add some salt. Stir lightly to combine and serve.
This is probably enough to serve two of normal appetite. Enough for one nursing mother.
As part of my New Year’s resolution to cook more new things I have gone back to my cookbooks. The Veganomicon is still one of my favorites, especially for inspiration. I love to page through it and soak up ideas to be turned into food at a later date. However, sometimes you just need to good from a recipe. This delightful pineapple quinoa stir fry is just such a recipe. I have made a few minor changes based on what I had in the house and the recipe below reflects those changes.
This is a lightly fruity stir-fry balanced by the saltiness of the cashews and has the pop of fresh herbs. This can be a main dish or a side depending on your goals. I served only four people as a side last time I made this, but we are all big eaters.
This is my last post before Thanksgiving! oh, my. I felt I had to do a quick post on roasted vegetables as it is a stable for my fall table. I particularly love roasted butternut squash, beets, parsnips, onions, and broccoli. I love to roast my broccoli until it is almost burnt and super crispy. It’s like little broccoli chips. Anyway, roasting vegetables is super easy. The hardest part is prepping them. If you’re short on time you can buy them peeled and chopped at most stores.
These are a perfect side for any meal, and are quite delightful as an easy, colorful side for Thanksgiving. If you are looking for other options for any portion of your meal check out this recipe roundup from last year Thanksgiving Feast Suggestions . I need to add a few things from this year of course, like: