In the last few months, I've written several list-style blog posts for UrbanStems. Check out a few of the highlights below:
Happy weekend! Can you believe it's already July 30?! I managed to wake up rather early today (probably because I fell asleep watching TV at about 10:45pm last night), so decided to get a little crazy with my morning meal. It's Saturday, after all. I didn't quite have all of the ingredients necessary, or the right quantities, but I more or less made a mini version of the baked oatmeal from Angela Liddon's Oh She Glows Cookbook. Since we were already getting wild, Andrew grabbed a container of Anita's Creamline Coconut Yogurt to top the oatmeal off, because while it's a little on the pricey side, the creamy, coconutty goodness is well worth it.
I don't really have a recipe for this one, since I kind of made it up as I went along. Here's a blog post with the original recipe, which uses apples and pears. In the notes, Angela suggests a variation with blueberries and bananas in place of the apples and pears. My banana was pretty ripe, so I also cut back on the sugar (and didn't add maple syrup, since I was out), used pecans instead of walnuts, and left out the applesauce. Then divided everything in half to fit my tiny casserole, and added some shredded coconut and a tablespoon of coconut oil to bring the whole thing together.
It was still tender, moist, and sweet, even without the missing sweetener, like a gooey, blueberry muffin.
I've had the pleasure recently of doing a bit of work for one of my favorite clients, Natural Contents Kitchen. The food they make is delicious, made from hyper-local, good-for-you ingredients. Also, they're absolutely delightful people!
Shoot days are always crazy days, and I have a tendency to get so wrapped up in my work that I forget to do basic things like eat or shower. I had only a moment to throw together some lunch so I turned to this simple stir fry. This spicy eggplant requires barely any time in the kitchen (if you've got some leftover rice hanging around your fridge like I did, you should be done in about 15 minutes!), which is ideal on these mega hot days. I told you the baby eggplants would make an appearance!
Spicy Eggplant Stir Fry for One
1 TBSP coconut oil, divided
3-5 baby eggplants, cut into cubes
4-5 cremini mushrooms, sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 package baked tofu, cut into small cubes
3 swiss chard leaves, leaves and stems chopped and separated
A few basil leaves, sliced into thin ribbons
Chopped cashews (*optional)
Red pepper flakes (*optional)
For the sauce:
1/2 TBSP soy sauce or tamari
1 TSP rice vinegar
1/2 - 1 TBSP hoisin sauce
A pinch of cornstarch, to thicken
Sriracha, to taste
- Heat 1/2 TBSP of coconut oil in a large pan or wok over medium-high heat. Add in the eggplant, and cook until golden brown and soft, about 7-10 minutes, stirring frequently. You may want to add in a sprinkling or water and/or soy sauce to help steam and soften the eggplant.
- While the eggplant is cooking, mix together the sauce ingredients and set aside.
- Once the eggplant is soft, add in the garlic and stir fry together for about a minute, until fragrant. Scoop the eggplant out of the pan and set aside.
- Add the other 1/2 TBSP of oil and the mushrooms. Cook until caramelized, 5 minutes.
- Add in the tofu and toss to combine. Cook for about a minute or two, and then add the eggplant back in.
- Add in the swiss chard stems and cook for a few minutes, until they begin to soften. Add in the leaves and toss to wilt.
- When the swiss chard leaves have wilted, add in the sauce and toss to coat all the veggies. Cook for 1-2 minutes more, until the sauce has thickened a bit.
- Remove the stir fry from the heat and add in the basil. Toss everything together and garnish with chopped cashews and a sprinkle of red pepper flakes.
There's a Vietnamese sandwich restaurant in my neighborhood called Cyclo and it's so amazingly delicious. Their tofu is really fragrant and flavorful, marinated in some kind of delightful, sweet and savory sauce — when you walk past the restaurant, you get a whiff of the spices. Their lunch special is also very reasonably priced, so it takes a considerable amount of determination to keep myself from ordering a sandwich every single weekday. I got a big hankering for it today but considering that I had nearly all of the required ingredients for a bahn mi in my fridge, I guilted myself out of ordering take out and into making my own. Sure, it's on sourdough instead of a bun. Sure, I didn't have daikon and was too lazy to grate a carrot. Sure, I put too much sriracha on for the photo and ended up guzzling huge gulps of water after each bite. It still hit the spot.
Here's how I made it:
2 slices of whole wheat sourdough, toasted
2 radishes, sliced
1 slice of baked tofu
Some kohlrabi, sliced
Pickled jalapeños, to taste
Butterhead lettuce leaves
Sriracha, to taste
A few sprigs of cilantro
Layer everything onto your bread and enjoy! And go easy on the sriracha
Today we received an Amazon Fresh order full of delicious local veggies. We've been making use of the 30-day free trial, and their options for locally-sourced produce. Although there's no way in hell we're going to pay the outrageous membership fee to keep using the service, it's been a nice way to get fresh produce in a neighborhood severely lacking in it. I'm particularly a fan of the CSA box option. I miss being in a CSA so much, and it's a great price for what you get. Today, we got a big bounty of in-season produce: tomatoes, eggplants, chard, and green beans, just to name a few.
With some time on my hands this afternoon, I pulled out this recipe for Red Curry Green Beans from Vegan Richa. I happen to have all of the ingredients, and the multicolored beans made this dish awfully pretty.
The beans turned out perfectly crisp, flavorful, and spicy. I loved it paired with chunks of baked tofu, and topped with peanuts and cilantro, as per Richa's recommendation. Give it try!
Spring produce is all about bright flavors — cheery, sweet strawberries, garlicky ramps and scapes, earthy asparagus. In celebration, we’ve been experimenting with all kinds of fresh takes on old standbys, giving them a boost of color and flavor with the bounty spring provides. This strawberry guac is the perfect way to usher in May: it’s at once sweet and spicy, familiar and unexpected.
Avocados are a goldmine of healthy benefits. They’re packed with monounsaturated fat (the good fat!), plus folate, B6, and more potassium than a banana. If you’re the industrious type, you can save the pit and sprout your own avocado tree!
Whether you’re planning a Cinco de Mayo fiesta or switching up your BBQ chips-and-dip game, let the season’s best flavors inspire something a little different!
Springtime Strawberry Guacamole
Adapted from Love and Olive Oil
2 Medium Ripe Avocados
1 Small Red Onion, Diced
1 Jalapeno, Stemmed, Seeded, and Finely Diced
1 Lime, Zested and Juiced
3 Tbsp. Chopped Fresh Cilantro
4 Oz. Ripe Strawberries, Chopped, + Extra for Garnish
Salt, to Taste
- Scoop the flesh out of your avocados into a medium bowl and mash with a fork until chunky.
- Add in the onion, jalapeno, lime zest and juice, cilantro, and strawberries, and stir together until combined. Add salt to taste.
- Serve immediately with a sprinkle of chopped strawberries.
Teeny tiny kumquats were virtually unknown to me until I took a chance late this winter, at the height of citrus season. Not knowing what to do with these little balls of sunshine, I took to the internet, and stumbled upon this delightful scone recipe. After my first batch, I was completely hooked. These scones are toothsome and moist, while still achieving that crumbly quality that makes scones so great.
Paired with a tall cup of coffee and a bright orange glaze, they come together in a flash — perfect for a lazy Sunday morning brunch.
Adapted from Pickles & Honey
1½ Cup All-Purpose Flour
1 Cup Almond Meal Flour
¾ Cup Granulated Sugar
2 Tsp. Baking Powder
½ Tsp. Salt
¼ Cup Solid Coconut Oil
1 Mashed Banana
1 Cup Fresh Kumquats, thinly sliced and seeds removed
3 Tbsp. Non-Dairy Milk (I used unsweetened, plain almond milk)
- Pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees F.
- Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
- Add the coconut oil to your dry ingredients, and using a pastry cutter or your hands, cut in the oil until it forms course crumbles. The oil should be about the size of peas.
- Stir in the banana and sliced kumquats until just combined.
- Add the non-dairy milk, 1 Tbs. at a time, until the dough comes together. You may need a little more or a little less than 3 Tbs. depending on how much juice gets incorporated with the kumquats.
- Shape the dough into a round ball and flatten out into a circle about 1/3-1/2 inch thick. Slice into 8 equal portions. Separate the scones slightly so they don't bake together in the oven.
- Bake for approximately 25 minutes, until golden brown and firm to the touch.
- Allow to cool and drizzle with citrus glaze and a sprinkle of orange zest.
1 Cup Powdered Sugar
2-3 Tbsp. Fresh-Squeezed Orange Juice
1/4 Tsp. Orange Zest
- Add the powdered sugar and zest to a bowl, and stir in the orange juice, one tablespoon at a time until the glaze comes together and it reaches the desired consistency. You may need a little more or less juice.