The iconic sandwich of New Orleans, deconstructed: this grain-free salad looses the bread and keeps all the good stuff. If you miss the bread, toss in some torn croutons, ideally made from seeded Italian bread. Other swaps: we got rid of the meat, upped the beans, […]
Roasted kale leaves are a fast, appealing way to serve kale; these have a cheese-like coating that adds protein and healthy fats. These use curly kale, but Tuscan kale is also nice, since the leaves are flat and cook more evenly; serve them upright in a squat, […]
Rich, creamy and dairy-free: this bright, vegan-friendly soup is the perfect fall dinner. To make your own pumpkin puree, cut a 3-pound pie pumpkin (not carving pumpkin) into eighths, scoop out seeds, and steam pumpkin pieces for 20 minutes, or until soft. Let cool, peel off skin, and puree flesh.
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 small yellow onion, chopped small
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup mirin
2 cups pumpkin puree
3 to 4 cups vegetable stock
3/4 cup full-fat coconut milk
2 tablespoons red miso
1/2 cup chopped cilantro leaves
White pepper to taste
Cayenne pepper to taste
- Heat oil in a large soup pot and sauté onion for 3 to 5 minutes, until tender. Add garlic and cook, stirring for 1 minute. Stir in mirin, scraping up any browned bits from bottom of pan.
- Add pumpkin, 3 cups of the vegetable stock and coconut milk, and puree till smooth. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 7 to 10 minutes.
- Puree soup in batches, adding up to 1 cup of the additional stock as needed to reach desired consistency. Return to pan and warm through.
- Transfer about 1/2 cup of hot soup to a small bowl Add miso and stir until smooth. Pour miso mixture back to pot. Stir in cilantro, and season with salt, white pepper and cayenne pepper to taste.
- To serve, divide soup between four individual bowls, sprinkle with sesame seeds, and serve hot.
Question: what do you eat instead of breakfast breads on grain-free diet? Um….this! Roasting the bananas before making the bread caramelizes the natural sugars and adds loads of flavor. I used chocolate chunks, but you can easily swap raw cacao nibs. You can also use a regular […]
Best breakfast ever: high-protein muffins that make great use of macadamias, almonds and chia seeds. We used tart, unsweetened cherries for ours, or use fruit-sweetened varieties. Add chopped pistachios for texture and a burst of vibrant color. Makes 12 muffins 1 1/4 cups almond flour […]
I left the skins on, since they add nutrients and a beautiful color—and I’m lazy like that. But peel yours if you’d like. Dunk whole peaches in boiling water for 30 seconds, then drop them in a bowl of ice water. The skins will slip right off. Habanero peppers are the spiciest of the lot; if you want a milder, kid-friendly version, swap them out for minced jalapeños.
Makes 2 cups
1 pound peaches, peeled and coarsely chopped
1/3 cup minced red onion
1/4 cup chopped cilantro leaves
1 small habanero pepper, seeded and finely minced
1. Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and stir to mix well. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours to let flavors blend.
2. Remove from refrigerator, season to taste with salt and pepper, and serve chilled.
Brown-bag lunch that’s not a sandwich? Easy. Protein- and fiber-rich chickpeas pair with olives, arugula and a bright lemony dressing for a fresh, simple mid-day meal. Makes 2 servings 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained 1 6-ounce jar artichoke hearts, drained and chopped 1/3 […]
Two years ago, our plum trees produced so many fruits we were reaching up into the branches and pulling them down by the handful. Plump, juicy, as purple-black as a midnight sky, they were heavenly. I made tarts, pies, jam, butter; I grilled them and ate them […]
Last week, after many weekends of travel and play, I (finally) started hacking at some of the weeds in my unruly and frequently neglected herb garden. Along the side of the house, where echinacea and lemon balm and comfrey flourish in a civilized and graceful manner, there grew a wild and extravagantly disruptive plant. It was prickly, pokey and significantly taller than me. Was that really my tiny little nettles plant, scarcely larger than a loaf of bread when I planted it last summer?
Indeed it was, in all its stinging glory. After foolishly trying to rip some up with my bare hands (hashtag owwwwwww), I fetched my gloves, consulted my herbal almanac, and got the lowdown on gathering and using nettles.
In spite of the prickly, painful-with-naked-hands harvesting, nettles are entirely edible, though they do require some taming. The sting comes from tiny hairs on the plant that contain formic acid and histamine, which have significant health benefits like easing arthritis pain and calming allergies. To harvest, cut them near the bottom of the stem with scissors, and use gloves—trust me on this one.
The tiny, painful hairs on the leaves are broken down when juiced or pureed, so you can drop a few leaves into smoothies or add to greens when juicing. Or hold them by the stems and dip them into boiling water for 30 seconds, to remove the sting and make them easier to handle in recipes. Once dipped and tamed, the leaves can be easily stripped from the stems.
I decided to try them in pesto, since my basil was in danger of becoming similarly unruly. I also added a handful of purslane—another weed that probably grows in your garden—for omega-3 fats and minerals, and to add a citrusy brightness. (You can just as easily leave it out, with the same delicious results.)
Nettles and purslane grow wild in Colorado; if you have neither in your backyard, be sure to gather them from areas that you know have not been sprayed. You can also find both nettles and purslane at many farmer’s markets. This savory, bright pesto freezes well, so you can enjoy it in the darkest depths of winter.
Garlicky Nettles Pesto
Makes about 1 pint
1 large bunch nettles, yielding 1 cup leaves
1/2 cup purslane (optional)
1 cup fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup raw pine nuts, cashews or macadamia nuts
6 garlic cloves, chopped
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup grated Asiago cheese, or 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1. Remove roots from bottom of nettles and discard. If using purslane, discard any root ends, wash thoroughly and set aside.
2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Remove from heat; with gloved hands, hold nettles by stems and dip into hot water for 30 seconds. Remove from water, let cool for a minute, then squeeze out as much water as possible. Strip off 1 cup of leaves.
3. Combine nettles, purslane, basil, nuts and garlic in a food processor or Vitamix. Puree until well combined. With the food processor or Vitamix running, add olive oil, continuing to process until smooth. Add cheese or nutritional yeast, and pulse just to combine.
4. Taste pesto and add lemon juice as needed. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and serve.
Harissa, a fiery Middle Eastern spice paste, adds volumes of flavor to this vibrant soup. For texture and crunch, save the seeds when you gut the pumpkin; rinse and dry them, toss with olive oil and cumin, spread on a baking sheet, and roast for 10 […]