Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Moroccan Stew

Lately we've been hosting Sunday night family dinners. Family dinner is basically when my cousins and I get together and eat all the food. We go out to eat or we stay in and have a homecooked meal. It's becoming a tradition in the same way that soup group or girl dinner was in Pittsburgh. Some highlights lately have been fish tacos, peanut noodles, and this stew! Restaurant-wise, Vedge was literally the best dining experience of my life (so far). All vegan. All vegetables. I mean the rutabaga fondue was enough to make me fall of my chair.
Also, with Sunday dinner comes Game of Thrones. Sadly it's over now but this stew from The First Mess makes it better. I doubled the recipe easily to serve all of us.

Moroccan Stew

2 tbsp coconut oil
1 red onion, small dice
1 tbsp cinnamon
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp red chili flakes
3 cloves of garlic, minced
5 dates, pitted + chopped
2 carrots, chopped
1 large or 2 small sweet potatoes, peeled + chopped
1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
3 cups vegetable stock or water
1 yellow pepper, chopped
2 cups cooked chickpeas
salt + pepper
1 bunch lacinato kale
Heat the coconut oil in a soup pot over medium-low heat. Add the onions and cook  until soft and translucent. I just let this cook for 15 minutes or so stirring occasionally. Then add spices plus garlic and cook for 5 minutes more, stirring constantly. Watch out for the spices burning. 
Add the dates, carrots and sweet potatoes. Add the tomatoes and stir. Add the vegetable stock. Boil the soup then turn down heat to medium and simmer for 15 minutes. 
Add the chopped yellow peppers and chickpeas and stir the soup. Season the whole thing again with salt and pepper. Simmer until everything is cooked to your liking. Chop the kale and add to the pot for a couple minutes. Serve with brown rice, additional dates, or bread + cheese to make it a meal.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Chocolate Hazelnut Tart

OMG this chocolate hazelnut tart! This is going to become a staple in my life. Lately I've just been trying to blog things I know I'll be making again and again. Maybe some special occasion recipes once in awhile. I usually have all the ingredients to make this dessert on hand minus the hazelnuts. Laura had me listen to a podcast on chocolate in Ecuador and it just reinforced my chocolate hoarding tendencies. I prefer to buy the chocolove brand. I love the pretzel milk chocolate and the hazelnut. Really I'll take any flavor. After Ecuador, I'll try to seek out Kallari chocolate too. Organic and so so delicious!! We went to the kallari store twice and had hot chocolate (we drank this daily), brownies, and chocolate mouse. Also just chocolate bars whole. Guh. In fact, I'm having severe chocolate withdrawal as I type this. (Don't worry, I have Justin's peanut butter cups stashed in my purse.)

This recipe is from Green Kitchen Stories. This family cooks amazing food and travels all around the world! My goals in life!
Also sorry no pic for now- will update later. For now here's pic of a similar tart.

1 cup hazelnuts, toasted
10 Medjool date's pitted
3 tbsp cacao powder
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 pinch sea salt
1 3/4 cups / 200 g cooked black beans 
5 Medjool dates, pitted
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup strong coffee
1/2 cup almond milk 
5-6 ounces dark chocolate (70%)
Note: I used a 10 inch tart pan, so I increased the filling recipe.
Start by making the crust. In a food processor or blender, blend the hazelnuts until they are chopped finely. Not so much that it turns into hazelnut flour. I liked having some bigger chunks in the crust. Add the dates, coconut oil, cacao, and salt. Pulse until everything is mixed thoroughly. If the dates are hard, soak them in some water for 15 minutes and drain before making crust.
Press crust mixture into bottom of the tart pan. I greased my fingers with a little coconut oil to facilitate the process. Cover with plastic wrap and place in freezer while making filling.
Melt the chocolate with the almond milk. I did this quickly in the microwave. Stir to combine. Add the beans, dates, coconut oil, vanilla extract, and coffee to the blender and blend until completely smooth.  Like really really smooth. Add the chocolate mixture into the blender and blend once more. Pour the filling on top of the crust and place it into the freezer overnight to a couple days. 
My favorite part of this dessert is that I can make it in advance. Also I can trick people into eating beans!
Oh ya and let it thaw for 30 minutes on the counter to soften up a bit.

Rhubarb Butter

It's rhubarb time! I have an hour left at work and I am literally dragging. Thankfully I have this butter to drizzle on my oatmeal tomorrow. Things that keep me going...

Rhubarb Butter
(Makes about 1 1/2- 2 cups)

4 stalks rhubarb, chopped
1 Granny Smith Apple, cored and chopped
1 handful strawberries, tops removed
1/4 honey
1/4 cup raw cane sugar
1/2 small lemon, juiced
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp vanilla extract

Add all ingredients to heavy ceramic pot and bring to a boil over medium heat. Cook for about 15 minutes until everything has softened and broken down substantially. Stir often. Then blend until smooth. Store in a mason jar for a couple weeks.
I've been putting the rhubarb butter on my oatmeal.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Chickpea + Avocado Hummus

The addition of avocado is a fun twist for a simple, quick homemade hummus. I got the recipe from Joy the Baker, whose baked goods are AMAZING along with everything else on her blog.

I ate most of the hummus with pita chips and fresh veggies, like the snap peas from my garden, but I also made a really good pita sandwich with chicken (with lettuce that's also from my garden!). 


1 can (15 oz) chickpeas
2 ripe avocados
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
 1 1/2 tbsp tahini
2 cloves garlic
salt & pepper

Blend everything in a food processor until as smooth as you like - I like it to stay a little bit chunky for texture but some people like a very smooth hummus. 

Monday, June 15, 2015

Spring Pasta with Peas, Goat Cheese, and Smoked Salmon

This recipe is like spring in a bowl. I checked out the Fairmount farmer's market which is just a couple blocks away from me. There are about 6ish vendors who all have gorgeous veggies, homemade bread, and jam! I snatched up some garlic scapes and basically the rest of the ingredients for this pasta dish. I also like working with measurements like 1 handful as it is closer to how I actually cook. This recipe is from What Katie Ate. You might recognize her books which I've seen all over. Gorgeous photography and traveling and food. All good things as far as I'm concerned. Also this is the back of the latest bust magazine.

What you need:

1 lb/454 g dried spaghetti
1 heaping cup frozen baby peas, defrosted
400g + plain goat cheese (1 large log)
3 garlic scapes, chopped (optional)
Small bunch fresh dill
Small bunch fresh basil leaves 
Small handful mint leaves (about 16)
1 handful arugula 
Zest and juice 1 lemon
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4- 1/3 cup hot pasta water 
8 slices smoked salmon, torn into strips

Garnish with fresh basil and dill and fresh Parmesan 

What to do:

Cook pasta until al dente. Remember to reserve some pasta water when straining. Return the strained pasta to the cooking pot.
Add peas, goat cheese, herbs, lemon, and olive oil into a blender and blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Add as much pasta water as needed to thin to a sauce consistency. Katie heats up the sauce but I skipped this. 

Stir the sauce into the pasta and heat for 3 minutes or so over medium low heat. Then plate the pasta then add the salmon and garnishes.
Note: the garlic scapes make the sauce less smooth but so much more delicious!

Monday, June 1, 2015

Zucchini Bread with Flax and Chocolate Chips

This recipe is easily doubled. I know there are a million zucchini bread recipes (and some I've been posted already). This one is my new favorite. It is unique because it has amazing texture. Kind of firm whereas most zucchini breads are just really mushy (in a good way!). I like to make muffins with this recipe and little loaves too. This bread is coming with me to Brittany's place! We're crashing there on our way to Quito. 

I've been kind of on a traveling hiatus but this month has been a whirlwind of trips already. We spent a lot of time back in Pittsburgh for the marathon and the reunion weekend. It was much needed and so so refreshing to see everyone!! Also to get amazing burgers at OTB and to try all the desserts at the new bakery in South Side.

Anyways it has been a year since I've been on a plane. That hasn't happened since I don't know when! So we're going on a 10 day adventure to YOLO and celebrate Kelly's first year of college. Ya!

This recipe is from my cousin's girlfriend via Pinterest via Food and Wine. Sources!

  1. 2 cups all-purpose flour (I've also used spelt with success)
  1. 1/4 cup flax seeds (whole)
  1. 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  1. 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  1. 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  1. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  1. 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  1. 2 large eggs
  1. 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  1. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  1. 1/2 cup fat-free plain Greek yogurt
  1. 1 cup coarsely grated zucchini (from about 1 medium zucchini)
  1. 1/2 cup chocolate chips 

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease whatever pans you are using. Mix dry ingredients together minus sugar. In a separate bowl mix the eggs, oil, and sugar together. Add the yogurt and then the zucchini. Fold the dry ingredients into the wet and just when mixed, add the chocolate chips.
Bake for about an hour + 10 minutes until a knife can be removed cleanly from the center. These are the directions for a loaf pan. Muffins will only take 30 minutes or so.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...