Category Archives: Gluten-free

Banquet Bowls with Cauliflower Pilaf, Dhal, + Scallion Cucumber Raita

In college, I was lucky enough to be exposed to so many wonderful cuisines and new ways of cooking.  It is much of what inspires me to cook and adapt recipes today.  The way I eat now can sometimes be isolating, but I am so grateful eating isn’t a physically painful experience for me anymore.  We all had colds over New Years, and I found this really delicious sounding bowl recipe, that I just had to make – bonus, I could eat Indian food and not get sick!  The recipe is a little complicated, only because there are three components, but in total it took about an hour to prepare, and we have enough leftovers for 2 more meals.  Also, the flavors are amazing!

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Banquet Bowls with Cauliflower Pilaf, Dhal, and Scallion Cucumber Raita

serves 6

adapted from Whole Bowls – Complete Gluten-free and Vegetarian Meals to Power Your Day

INGREDIENTS

For the Cauliflower Pilaf

1 tbsp avocado oil

1 medium sized sweet onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tbsp fresh grated ginger (I used jarred minced ginger from Ginger People)

1 tbsp curry powder (mild)

2 tsp garam masala

1 tsp sea salt

ground black pepper, to taste

1 cup brown basmati rice, rinsed and drained well

1 3/4 cup water

1 tbsp lemon juice

1 small head cauliflower, cut into very small pieces (the bigger the pieces, the longer it will take to cook)

1/2 cup fresh chopped cilantro

For the Dhal

3 1/2 cups water

2 cups red lentils, rinsed well and drained

1/2 cup coconut milk (I used So Delicious Unsweetened)

2 tsp lemon juice

2 tsp maple syrup

2 tsp curry powder

1 tsp sea salt

For the Scallion Cucumber Raita

1 cup diced English cucumber

1/2 cup plain coconut yogurt* (I used So Delicious brand – 1/2 cup is one small container’s worth)

1/4 cup cilantro, chopped

4 scallions, sliced

1 tsp lemon juice


MAKE AHEAD TIP

Cauliflower Pilaf – 2 days

Scallion Cucumber Raita – 3 days

Dhal – 1 week


DIRECTIONS

For the Cauliflower Pilaf  – In a large saucepan, heat the oil over medium. Add onion, garlic, ginger, spices, salt, and pepper. Cook until onions are soft, about 10 minutes.  Add rice, stirring constantly to toast, about 2 minutes.  Add water and lemon juice, continuing to stir.  Bring to a boil, cover, and simmer, about 45 -60 minutes.  [TIP – Set the timer to 30 minutes, and check on rice to see if you need to add more water, cover and simmer for another 7 minutes.  Keep doing this until the rice looks puffed up.]  When rice is cooked, add caulilflower, and cover another 10-15 minutes, until cauliflower is tender. You may need to add more water to achieve this.  OPTIONAL – Turn off heat, and fold in cilantro.

For the Dhal – Place all ingredients in a medium saucepan.  Bring to a boil, reduce to simmer, and cook for about 20-25 minutes, stirring often.  It will look like a little soupy, and you can cook down further if you want it a little thicker.  It will have a beautiful golden color.

For the Scallion Cucumber Raita – Combine all ingredients in a small bowl.  Transfer to a covered container and keep refrigerated until serving. *You can sub 3/4 cup greek yogurt for 1/2 cup coconut yogurt, if dairy isn’t an issue for you.

TO ASSEMBLE

In a shallow bowl, place about 1 cup of the Dhal, with about 1 cup of the Cauliflower Pilaf next to it.  Spoon about 1/4 cup of the Scallion Cucumber Raita next to these.  Sprinkle a little cilantro over all of it and enjoy.  The flavors taste great eaten together in one bite or separately.

TO REHEAT

Place the portions listed above of the Dhal and Cauliflower Pilaf in a bowl and heat up in the microwave.  Garnish with the Scallion Cucumber Raita.

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Tate’s Chocolate Chip Cookies made Vegan + Gluten Free

Tate’s Chocolate Chip cookies are quite possibly the best cookies ever.  It’s been almost 5 years since I’ve had one, but I can still remember how buttery and crisp they tasted.  Many allergy friendly desserts leave much to be desired, and I’m constantly trying new recipes whenever I have a sweets craving.  This one from the Tate’s Bake Shop Cookbook is the best recipe I’ve made yet.  Even with my adaptations it’s excellent.  I think because I used golden brown sugar instead of dark brown, they came out like more traditional cookies; but evenso they are SO good.  They taste buttery, albeit not crispy like original Tate’s cookies, and hit the spot!  The texture is good and it got the B seal of approval, who wanted to eat just cookies for dinner after I made them.  Feel free to swap out your traditional flour, eggs, and butter – I know they’ll still taste wonderful.

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Best Vegan + GF Chocolate Chip Cookies

yields about 34 cookies

adapted from Tate’s Bake Shop Cookbook

INGREDIENTS

2 cups King Arthur all-purpose baking mix

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp kosher salt

1 cup vegan butter (2 sticks; I used the MELT buttery sticks)

3/4 cup sugar

3/4 cup brown sugar (golden)

1 tsp water

1 tsp vanilla

2 eggs via egg replacer, like Follow Your Heart

2 cups vegan chocolate chips (I used Equal Exchange allergy friendly brand)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line cookie sheets with a Silpat or parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, and salt.
  3. In another large bowl, cream the butter and sugars.  Add the water and vanilla.  Mix the ingredients until they are just combined. Add the “eggs” and mix them lightly.  Stir in the flour mixture. Fold in the chocolate chips, don’t overmix the dough.
  4. Drop the cookies 2 inches apart onto the prepared cookie sheets using two tablespoons or an ice cream scoop.  Use 1 tablespoon if you want to make smaller cookies.  [I got about 9 cookies on each baking sheet, leaving plenty of room for them to spread].
  5. Bake them for 12-18 minutes until the edges and centers are browned.  15-18 minutes was the best timing for me, erring on the latter time helped them spread more to the size of traditional Tate’s cookies.  They won’t be thin and crisp like Tate’s cookies, but more fluffy like a Chip’s Ahoy or traditional chocolate chip cookie.
  6. Remove the cookies and cool on a wire rack.
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Visiting Tate’s Bake Shop in 2012

Slow Cooker Sweet & Sour Chicken

The other part of our Christmas Eve Chinese Food meal was some really great sweet & sour chicken.  I’ve made other iterations of this dish before, and this recipe is by far the best.  True to great Chinese food, it tastes even better the next day.  I made it in a Dutch Oven, rather than a slow cooker, and used 1/2 white and 1/2 dark meat, rather than all dark meat like the recipe called for.  I completely forgot to add the tomato paste (added at the very end) and it still tasted great.  This sauce has just the right thickness and a balanced flavor.  B wasn’t interested in trying it yet – he preferred his “teriyaki” chicken instead (will post that later) – but Scott and I loved it.

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Slow Cooker Sweet & Sour Chicken

serves 6-8

Adapted from Against All Grain: Delectable Paleo Recipes to Eat Well and Feel Great by Danielle Walker

INGREDIENTS

1 lb chicken thighs, boneless and skinless

1 lb chicken breast, boneless and skinless

1/3 cup coconut aminos (or soy sauce)

1/3 cup honey

2 tbsp orange juice

2 tbsp tomato paste

1 tbsp avocado oil

3 cloves garlic, minced (I used Dorot frozen cubes)

1/2 tsp ground ginger

3/4 tsp sea salt

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper

1/4 cup chicken broth (if using a dutch oven)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Trim any visible fat from chicken and place in a singer layer in the bottom of the slow cooker, or dutch oven.
  2. Place the remaining ingredients (except broth) in a small bowl and mix together to make the sauce.
  3. Pour over the chicken to coat, making sure to get both sides.
  4. Add chicken broth if using a dutch oven – omit this step if using a slow cooker.
  5. DUTCH OVEN – Preheat oven to 350.  Cook chicken, covered, for 30 minutes, or until chicken comes out at 165 degrees.   SLOW COOKER – Cook on low for 4 hours.
  6. Remove the chicken and cut into cubes.  Set aside.
  7. Spoon any extra fat from the sauce.  Put remaining sauce into to a saucepan and simmer on medium-low heat until sauce has reduced by 1/2.  I tested the thickness of the sauce by occasionally dipping a piece of chicken in the sauce, to see how it coated the chicken.  I turned off the heat, once it reached the thickness I preferred.
  8. Return chicken to sauce, and keep heated until ready to serve.

Awesome Mushroom Lo Mein

Chinese food is one of my husband’s favorite cuisines. Come the days leading up to Christmas Eve, it’s all he talks about.  It’s been challenging finding great Chinese food recipes to make at home…until now.  This Lo-Mein recipe is awesome.  The flavors are so good, it was really hard for me to stop noshing on it between finishing making it and serving it.  The recipe called for steak seasoning, but since we don’t cook red meat at home, I splurged on this seasoning by Nom Nom Paleo instead, and it’s definitely worth it.  I opted to use sweet chili sauce instead of chili paste, because all the options at the store had wheat and/or soy in them.  I read that Avocado oil can be subbed for sesame oil because it’s also nutty in flavor – that worked great here!  If you’re craving Chinese food, these noodles are worth a try.  Happy holidays!

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Mushroom Lo Mein

serves 8

adapted from Whitney Bond

INGREDIENTS

Mushrooms

2 8oz. packs mushrooms, cleaned, stems removed and quartered

2 tbsp coconut aminos

2 tbsp rice vinegar (unseasoned)

1 tsp minced ginger (fresh or from jar)

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 tsp avocado oil

1 tsp Magic Mushroom Powder (recipe here or sold at Whole Foods)

Noodles

10 oz. brown rice spaghetti noodles (I like Tinkeyada)

1/4 cup coconut aminos

1/2 tbsp Sriacha

1 tbsp rice vinegar (unseasoned)

1 tbsp honey

2 tbsp sweet chili sauce (I like Thai Kitchen brand)

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp grated ginger (I use jarred by Ginger People)

1 tsp avocado oil

TOPPING – Scallions, thinly sliced

DIRECTIONS

  1. Prepare mushrooms first.  Mix all ingredients for the sauce together in a large bowl.  When well combined, toss quartered mushrooms in sauce.  In a large cast iron or nonstick skillet, add mushrooms and extra sauce to pre-heated pan.  Cook until mushrooms have cooked down in size and majority of the sauce is evaporated.  Remove mushrooms from heat and set aside in a separate bowl.
  2. Prepare noodles according to package.  Cook and drain immediately, rinsing with cold water/according to package instructions.  Return cooked, drained, and rinsed noodles back to the pan.
  3. While noodles are cooking, mix all sauce ingredients together in a bowl.
  4. After noodles are returned to the pan, add in the sauce and toss well.  Add mushrooms, and stir until well combined.  Cook over low heat until warmed throughout.
  5. Enjoy!

Chili Dog Chili

The last chili recipe is one I found that’s meant for chili cheese dogs, though we don’t eat it with hot dogs (or the cheese).  We double the recipe so it can last a few extra meals, and it’s not only easy to make, but it’s also really good.  I first made it for the last night of the World Series, and have since altered it, to what I think is the perfect meal.  I don’t have any pictures of this one, but I am including a picture of a fun serving idea – over butternut squash “fries” – i.e. crinkle cut butternut squash. It’s also great on a sloppy joe type sandwich for kids (and kids at heart).

BONUS – If you want to check out the cookbook where I found the recipe, the Kindle version of the cookbook is on sale now for less than $5!  It has other great recipes like Grown up Beans on Toast and the Go-To Frittata.IMG_8132

Chili Dog Chili

serves 6-8

adapted from Dude Diet Cookbook

INGREDIENTS

2 lbs ground chicken breast

3 tsp olive oil

2 small onions, chopped small

3 garlic cloves, minced

2 tbsp chili powder

4 tsp paprika

1 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

2 14.5 oz cans of diced tomatoes (I use Muir Glen Fire Roasted with Garlic)

1 15 oz can tomato sauce (I use Muir Glen Organic)

2 small cans mild diced green chiles

2 tsp coconut aminos (or Worcestershire sauce)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Heat oil in a large stockpot.  Add onions and garlic and saute until softened and fragrant, about 5 minutes.
  2. Add spices and stir in until toasted, about 30 seconds – 1 minute.
  3. Add chicken and cook while breaking up into small pieces with a wooden spoon.
  4. Once the chicken is all just cooked, add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, green chiles and coconut aminos.  Bring to a boil and simmer for about 15 minutes, or longer, until desired thickness is reached.

 

 

Slow Cooker Taco Chili

Another favorite chili in our house is this Taco Chili.  The recipe is meant for a chicken chili, but I attempted to make it vegetarian by adding extra beans instead.  It’s very easy to make (even without a slow cooker).  At least once a week, swapping out a meat meal for a vegetarian one, is one way I’ve found to cut down our weekly food budget. It can be challenging getting a dairy-free child to have enough protein with a vegetarian meal, but this recipe is a winner! B loved this chili mainly because it was topped with avocado and served with our favorite lime tortilla chips*  In his words, “Chili?! With avocado and lime chips?!  [jumping up and down] I love Taco Chili!  [hugging me] Mama, you make the best food.”

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Slow Cooker Taco Chili

serves 4-6

adapted from Skinnytaste Fast and Slow

INGREDIENTS

Taco Seasoning

1 1/2 tbsp ground cumin

1 1/2 tbsp chili powder

1/4 tsp garlic powder

1/4 tsp onion powder

1/4 tsp dried oregano

1/2 tsp paprika

1 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Chili

1 (8oz) can tomato sauce

2 (15oz) can black beans, rinsed and drained

1 (15oz) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1 (15oz) can pinto beans, rinsed and drained

1 yellow pepper, diced small (or you can use 1-10 oz. package frozen corn kernels)

2 (10oz) can chopped green chiles (mild)

1 small onion, chopped

DIRECTIONS

Taco Seasoning – In a small bowl, combine the cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, paprika, salt and pepper.

Chili – In a 5 or 6 quart slow cooker (or a large stockpot if not using a slow cooker), combine the tomato sauce, beans, tomatoes, green chiles, onion, yellow pepper, and taco seasoning. Stir well.

SLOW COOKER – Cook on high for 6 hours or low for 10 hours.

STOVETOP – Bring mixture to a boil and the simmer for 30-45 minutes, until chili reduces to desired thickness.

To serve, scoop the chili into individual serving bowls and top with avocado, cilantro, and your favorite tortilla chips.

*These chips are found MUCH cheaper at Whole Foods.  Link in post for reference.

 

Pumpkin Chili (Meatless Monday)

Making easy and nutritious meals everyone will actually eat is an ongoing experiment in our house.  As much as I’d like us all to eat the same thing for dinner, several nights a week I’ve resigned to being a short order cook.  There are few exceptions, chili being one of them. This week, I’m going to post three chili recipes we like the most.  First up, Pumpkin Chili, from the Thug Kitchen cookbook.  Don’t let the name fool you, this meatless chili is full of flavor, and made heartier with the addition of pumpkin puree, without tasting like pumpkin.  It’s super easy to make and topped with avocado and some good chips, it’s a great meal for everyone in the family.

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Thug Kitchen Pumpkin Chili

Pumpkin Chili

serves 4-6 (double the recipe if you want extra to freeze)

adapted from Thug Kitchen

INGREDIENTS

1 yellow onion

1 carrot

1 red, orange or yellow pepper

1 tsp olive oil

4 garlic cloves, minced

2 tsp coconut aminos (soy sauce or tamari also works)

2 tsp chili powder

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp cumin

1 14.5oz can diced tomatoes

1 can pureed pumpkin

2 cups vegetable broth or water

2 cans beans, any kind you like – kidney and black beans work well

1 tbsp lime juice

TOPPINGS – avocado, cilantro, red onion, vegan cheese (we like to make shreds from the Daiya Cheddar block), vegan sour cream (plain unsweetened non-dairy yogurt works well)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Chop up carrot, onion, and pepper to the size of a bean or smaller
  2. In a big pot, heat the oil, and cook vegetables until they begin to soften and brown, about 5 minutes.  Add the garlic, coconut aminos, and spices – cook for about 30 seconds.  Add the tomatoes, broth, pumpkin, and beans – stir well so everything is nicely combined and all the flavors are getting to know each other.  Turn down the heat and keep covered for about 15-30 minutes, until it reaches your desired thickness.  The longer it cooks, the better it’ll taste.  (We like it thicker, so I simmer it longer than 15 minutes.)
  3. When done cooking, stir in the lime juice and serve right away. Top with your favorites and enjoy!

NOTE – This makes great leftovers.  After reheating the next day, add some more fresh lime juice and cilantro to make it taste just as good as the first day.

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Wednesday Wishlist

I’m always looking at new cookbooks and in my dream kitchen would have a separate library (and sitting room) for them like Ina Garten.  I recently discovered checking out e-books from the library, and have been looking at several I’d love to add to my permanent collection.  I’m a minimalist when it comes to kitchen appliances, partly because we have a small kitchen, and mainly because the thought of more to clean after meal prep is pretty much the last thing I want to do.  But cookbooks, can never have too many of those.

Danielle Walker’s Against All Grain Celebrations: A Year of Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, and Paleo Recipes for Every Occasion

This cookbook includes grain free and dairy free recipes for a year’s worth of holidays and seasonal celebrations – there are plenty of kid-friendly recipes, holiday sweets, and party foods like sweet and sour meatballs.  It’s kind of hard to not want to make it all!

The Moosewood Cookbook: 40th Anniversary Edition by Mollie Katzen

There’s something about the lack of pictures and handwritten style of the recipes that’s always made this book so appealing and comforting to me.  I recently made the Minestrone Soup and it couldn’t have been easier, and more delicious. The cool thing about the soups is they all were tested with water instead of stock, which makes them even easier to throw together mid-week.  I was first introduced to these cookbooks from a nutritionist I worked with in college.  Moosewood is a vegetarian restaurant that’s been around since 1963 in Ithaca, New York — many of the cookbook recipes are pretty easy to adapt to gluten-free and dairy-free.  SIDENOTE:  If you’re looking for an inspiring follow on Facebook, Mollie Katzen, is a great add!

Kitchen Matters by Pamela Salzman

OK, I own this one, and it’s been the best cookbook I’ve read/used in a long time.  Almost all the recipes have tasted great, and they’re all very easy to put together.  I discovered her through some rabbit hole I was down on Instagram one day, and I’m glad I found her.  My favorite recipes are the Chicken Shawarma, Slow Cooker Burrito Bowl Chicken, and Chocolate Zucchini brownies.  The main reason I’ve never like cooking chicken is because I’m horrible at it…until this cookbook.  The two chicken recipes I’ve tried have resulted in perfectly cooked chicken almost every time.  Many recipes also feature tips to accommodate dietary restrictions.  Her website is awesome too, and every week she writes a Dinner Planner for the week.  Her approach has helped me cut down on our food budget, find recipes our whole family can enjoy, and inspire me to try new ways to be organized about the week.  DREAM = taking one of her LA-based cooking classes.

Feeding a Family: A Real-Life Plan for Making Dinner Work by Sarah Waldman

I found this cookbook while searching library books, and it’s such a cool format – organized by Season, and every recipe includes a way to adapt it for a baby to enjoy as well.  What a great way to make meal prep easier!  We’ve tried the Autumn Meatballs and Butternut Squash Casserole – both were delicious!  I adapted both for gluten free, dairy free – they weren’t perfect when tweaked, but the flavors were incredible; especially, the Butternut Squash Casserole.

Feed the Resistance:  Recipes + Ideas for Getting Involved by Julia Turshen

I love her earlier cookbook Small Victories for its easy recipes and ways to alter them to be even simpler than they start, not to mention most of the dishes include basic ingredients.  I keep seeing this new cookbook of hers pop up in my feeds, and I’m so curious about the recipes and the content – from what I can tell it seems like an all around inspiring win.

Skinnytaste Fast and Slow: Knockout Quick-Fix and Slow Cooker Recipes by Gina Homolka

One of the best cookbooks out there because the recipes are easy and contrary to the title, you don’t have to own a slow cooker to make the recipes.  Within the first few pages, she includes a chart of how to make all slow cooker recipes on the stovetop or with a dutch oven.  We’ve had the Chicken Pumpkin Chili, Taco Chili and Teriyaki Chicken (adapted with Coconut Aminos).  All are really delicious, super easy, and feel like an indulgence without splurging.  Though I’ve yet to own this cookbook, I’ve looked through it at the bookstore and it has beautiful pictures and the format is easy to follow (even includes markings if the recipe adapts to dietary restrictions). I have her first cookbook, and this one is drastically better – the recipes are easier and more appealing.  

Life Update + [Pepperoni] Pizza Pasta

When I first started this blog, it was a way to keep myself accountable after nearing the end of a weight loss journey, I had spent nearly a year and a half on.  I lost weight using Weight Watchers, and by adapting recipes I’d see on blogs and TV, with the Recipe Builder feature on the App, it was a fun way I could still enjoy “regular” food, just in a more healthful manner.  In this process, I discovered I preferred meatless meals to ones with, and it was so fun to explore a whole new world of recipes.  I reached my weight loss goal and shortly after, I became pregnant with my first child.  In the year after he was born, we discovered he has multiple food allergies.  Because I was nursing at the time, this meant my diet also had to be tweaked to accommodate him.  While frustrating at first, over time, years of my own stomach problems labeled as IBS, nearly all went away.  For the sake of my health and our son’s, we adapted to a kitchen free of wheat, dairy, and soy – also including anything made in facilities with these ingredients.  B is now 4 years old and has a new little sister.  As we’re trying to figure out her allergies, I’m back in a similar situation, accommodating my diet to help identify the culprit.  I can now add nuts, eggs, corn, and a few other items to the list of foods my cooking is free of.  B, can eat them, but my current list has set me on a new path, yet again, of finding some great resources to help me eat healthy, while also making meals our whole family can enjoy – what this means is I’m back to eating chicken and turkey, and very occasionally red meat (though I still don’t cook that at home).  We’ve always enjoyed fish (sans shellfish), so nothing has changed there.  I have found some really amazing recipes and chefs who cook pretty close to the way I am eating right now.  The other fun thing is I’m finally finding a way to cut down on our weekly food costs, while still making delicious and nutritious meals. (Ask anyone who needs to be mindful of food allergies, and they’ll tell you just how costly it can be – article).

All of this brings me to one of our new favorite recipes – Pepperoni Pizza Pasta.  I don’t have my own picture of it because we’ve eaten it too fast, the past two times we had this.  It is SO good and very easy to adapt – you can sub your favorite pasta noodles for the squash noodles, and you can leave out the pepperoni and use mushrooms and garlic instead.  What really makes this taste like pizza is the tomato sauce, oregano and nutritional yeast.  It’s also incredibly easy to prep the night before, so the whole meal can go from stove to table in less than 30 minutes.  I keep the spiralized noodles in a large ziplock, airtight in the fridge, and get the mushrooms pre sliced.

Danielle Walker is the author of this recipe, and she herself, has a wonderful blog (and cookbooks) called Against All Grain.  Her recipes are super creative, and you’d hardly know they were grain free and mostly dairy free.  My mom and I have looked through all three of her cookbooks and there’s enough that appeals to both of us.  She even inspired me to purchase a Spiralizer, which I’m LOVING!

Pepperoni Pizza Pasta

serves 3-5

adapted from Danielle Walker’s Against All Grain: Meals Made Simple: Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, and Paleo Recipes to Make Anytime

INGREDIENTS

3-5 yellow squashes, spiralized like noodles (OR your favorite pasta)

2 cloves garlic, minced

12 oz. sliced mushrooms

4 oz. kosher salami or turkey pepperoni, diced

3/4 cup tomato paste

2 tsp dried oregano

1 tbsp nutritional yeast

salt and pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS

If using pepperoni or salami, heat in a large pot (I used a enameled cast iron one like this) until crispy. Remove from pan when crisped.

If making vegetarian, add mushrooms and garlic until mushrooms have reduced and are soft and you can smell the garlic.  If making with pepperoni, do this step after the pepperoni has been removed.

Take squash noodles and add to garlic and mushrooms.  Cook for a few minutes until noodles are softened.  Add tomato paste, oregano, and nutritional yeast.  Heat until all combined  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Cook a few more minutes.

Mix in pepperoni and serve warm.

NOTES: To make Kosher, use Kosher salami; to make vegetarian/vegan, omit pepperoni and use double mushrooms; to make Gluten-free with out squash noodles, use your favorite brown rice noodles – we love the Tinkeyada brand.  If you run out of tomato paste, your favorite tomato sauce also works fine here.

No-Bake Tahini Cherry Bars

These no-bake bars are the perfect treat to hit the spot, when it’s hot outside, you want something sweet,  but also something wholesome.  Prep was really easy, and a child could easily help with the stirring parts.  I added mini chocolate chips on half, to make it more appealing to little ones, because I think it’s going to be hard to convince a toddler to eat a dessert with tahini, if they’ve never tried it before.  These are perfectly sweet, and the hit of salt, is just what they need to make them really good.  Now to think what else I can add in other than dried cherries…

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Ready for the freezer

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No-bake Tahini Cherry Bars

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A great summer sweet & wholesome treat

No-Bake Tahini Cherry Bars

adapted from One Part Plant

makes 8-24 bars depending on how you cut them

INGREDIENTS

2 tbsp coconut oil

1 tsp vanilla extract

3 tbsp pure maple syrup

1/3 cup tahini, stirred well

1 1/4 cups gluten-free rolled oats (not the instant/quick cooking kind)

pinch of sea salt

1/4 cup dried cherries

handful of Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips (optional)

DIRECTIONS

Line a 4×8 loaf pan with parchment paper.

On low heat, melt the coconut oil in a small saucepan.  Once melted, remove from heat immediately and stir in vanilla and syrup.  Stir in the tahini.  Once combined, add oats and salt.  Stir until all the oats are coated.  Stir in the cherries.

Pour mixture into loaf pan and spread evenly.  If desired, sprinkle on chocolate chips, lightly pressing them in with your fingers.

Put in freezer for at least 45 minutes.  Cut and serve immediately. Store any leftovers, covered, in the freezer.