During the summers at our Russian dacha, meals were always accompanied by small, curiously shaped cucumbers that we picked from the garden that very day. Sometimes they were so perfectly sweet, that we would simply cut them in half and sprinkle with a bit of salt. Other times, we would toss a basic cucumber and tomato salad. Either way, this vegetable served as a cooling, hydrating, and nutritional companion to any summer meal. Cucumbers are at their best from May to July, and while we are at the peak of their season, here are two undemanding cucumber salads. One is a deserved favourite, and the other – a new addition. They are simple in preparation, and work well as side dishes or as snacks, on top of crackers.
I’ve always liked to pair cucumbers with dill, but came across the idea of combining them with apple cider vinegar in Carol Alt’s book.
Todays salads are the Cucumber and Dill Salad (an old favourite) and Ginger Cucumber Pickles (a Japanese salad).
Sunny California is feeling like a distant memory as we settle into our new home, here in sunny rainy windy and oh yes, chilly Brooklyn. I am loving it here though. However, spring has definitely not sprung so I have been rocking out with a bunch of warming soups and this Curry Split Pea Soup has been one of the favorites. If you want extra heat, add a dollop of spicy sun-dried tomato spread on top of you greens. I served it this way to my BF. His mouth is still on fire. Sorry monkie, but the touch of red looks so pretty in your picture…. :)
May be now is the time to make a confession - I hate cooking the same old stuff over and over again. And mainly because of that I spend years of rebelling against myself and convincing everybody around me that I hate cooking. My husband was the only one who didn’t give up on me. He kept on saying everything I made was delicious and I kept on disagreeing.
Only when I started paying attention to what’s healthy, my view changed. I figured out that it’s a whole new world out there with tons of interesting and amazing recipes. With numerous challenges on using the right kinds of ingredients to create a healthy recipe. My kitchen became the most adorable spot in the house and I became addicted to preparing new meals every day. The possibilities turned out to be endless – raw desserts, vegan treats, healthy dishes… All new, all challenging… my boredom with food was finally over.
The idea behind the colorful trio puree came to me while I was thinking of potato puree. How could I come up with a version of the potato puree, say using broccoli, cauliflower or even carrots without over complicating the ingredients. I ended up with three purees made with the simplest ingredients, just the vegetable, coconut oil, lime and salt. The challenge this time will be on you – to make your own twists by adding different herbs, spices, cheeses or whatever :) Or leave them as they are, the choice is yours. Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos
This is a basic stock that can be used with pretty much any soup or stew. You can always tailor your homemade stock to enhance the soup you are making. For example, if you’re making a sweet vegetable soup, add sweet potato or squash for extra sweetness. Also use your vegetable trimmings, such as leek tops, mushroom caps, squash skins and fennel tops. But avoid spinach, cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, kale, collards, brussel sprouts, beets, onion skins and wilted vegetables. They will make your stock bitter. The stock will last about 5 days in the fridge and 2 months in the freezer.
This recipe is from the San Francisco restaurant Gather, created by their chef, Sean Baker. His recipe was featured in Food and Wine Magazine last month as one of the best restaurant dishes of 2010. It was the only vegan recipe so, of course, I had to try it. YUM! I added walnuts when he called for pecans cause I didn’t have any on hand as well as no miso and still it was rich, flavorful and delish.
Napa and savoy cabbage are a softer and sweeter variety than your regular green cabbage, so choose either for this recipe. This is a wonderful accompaniment to serve with one of your favorite winter soups. Adds a refreshing crispiness to your meal.
This maybe a simple salad, but believe me it pacts a flavorful punch. The sweet carrots mixed with Moroccan spices and fresh herbs are a heavenly combination and a refreshing colorful addition to any of your winter meals. Warning, you may wanna eat the whole bowl all by yourself…
I’d be totally lying if I said I weren’t a sucker for anything colored pink or purple. Which is why, when I came across these purple hull peas at the market, I couldn’t resist the splurge! The price was high, and I had no clue what I was going to do with them, but that only intrigued me more.
When I got home, I anxiously cracked open a pod, and to my surprise found a bean similar to that of the black eyed pea. ‘Crap’ I thought, I have to cook these! Not because I don’t sometimes eat cooked food, but because my dehydrator’s home is on top of my stove – Basically, cooking (with heat) to me, is so much more work than it’s counterpart. Funny what we get used to…
Any who, I sat in front of my computer, watched two hours of hulu, and shelled all of the beans. Whew, what a job! I knew after all that work, that this would definitely be a one time only purchase!
I rushed home tonight to whip up this raw version of the Macro bowl I had from Aux Vivres last week, so I could share the yummy goodness with all ya’ll before the weekend. You can skip the bowl, but I wouldn’t skip the sauce. I said it before and I’ll say it again – it’s ridic.
Some foods have a distinct seasonal disposition. Ice cream for summertime, apple pie in the autumn, hot soup during winter, and roasted artichoke in the spring. Well, I have a feeling that this soup surpasses seasons. It’s both light and hearty and is just as delicious chilled as it is warm.
I often daydream about food and make up different recipes while doing things unrelated to cooking. Well recently, in the middle of a daydream, I got an idea for making a soup that would have nut milk for its base. I imagined a bowl full of soup that is “blond” and creamy, and became excited about the possibilities of the milk’s earthy flavour.
It took quite a bit of experimentation until I was able to minimize the ingredients to two simple companions to almond milk – apple and fennel. Combined with the milk’s nutty taste, the two bring a sweet and fresh presence to the bowl. The spice of chili and coriander deepens the flavour and ties the whole thing together with a slight kick. The use of nut milk instead of whole nuts makes for a much lighter soup.
Well recently, in the middle of a daydream, I got an idea for making a soup that would have nut milk for its base.
Pumpkinseed cheese is a fairly recent discovery. The first time I made it, I could not believe what a wonderful result I got with so few ingredients. It’s a bit like a cracker. A cheesy, healthy, and delicious one. I’ve made it very frequently over the past couple of months. It’s simple, and works as a wonderful snack or part of a meal. I like to serve the soup with this “cheese,” but it’s very possible to pair it with any crackers of your choice.
I am not one to use canned beans or vegetables. I most always cook with fresh seasonal produce. But sometimes, you gotta do what you gotta do and use what you got. Like when you are stuck inside cause there is a snow storm and you forgot to go to the market so you got slim pickin’s to work with to make dinner. I open the pantry and my eyes fall upon a can of fire-roasted organic tomatoes. Hmmmmm…my mind is a flutter… I’m gonna make us some soup and a loaf of six-seed spelt bread.
Here in Florida, we are blessed to be at the height of our Farmers Market season. My Saturday ritual involves getting up as early as possible (but never early enough) and heading downtown to visit my favorite organic farmers. Every week I vow to arrive earlier when I hear that I missed out on the strawberries or the last of the Lacinato kale. But come Saturday, sleep always wins. When I finally make it to my favorite booth, I’m always on the hunt for something exotic. Sometimes I can find rare tropical fruits (more often in the summer) and unique citrus varieties. Last week I scored the last of the pink tangelos and WOW–what a treat.
This week I was late. Kale, a major staple for me–gone. So I fumbled around trying to figure out what else to get. I’m a total list maker. I have to be, while shopping for me, my hubby and a handful of clients. Though, in keeping with fresh and seasonal ingredients, my favorite list entry is often “stuff for salad”. Walking around the booth, it was impossible to miss the gorgeous display of Romanesco (a broccoli & cauliflower relative). This is seriously the most beautiful food I have ever seen. It’s bright, lime green and full of spiraling florets. Even better, as much as I love broccoli and cauliflower, Romanesco is a bit more subtle in flavor. I grabbed a perfect looking piece, a ton of fresh herbs and knew I was in for a treat this week. This salad is so light, delicious and absolutely full of fresh herby flavor. If you can’t get your hands on Romanesco, feel free to substitute broccoli or cauliflower.