Tag Archives: vegetarian

blackberry and endive salad

blackberry-and-endive-salad-webSometimes it’s the simple things that are best.

Like something bitter with something sweet, something crunchy with something soft, something healthy with something full of flavor.

endive

In summer, all I want is things that are hydrating and things that give me energy.  Since compromising taste is simply something that cannot be had, that’s just a given.  This salad was a pleasant surprise of things in my fridge and a tender summer moment in the kitchen.  Endives are rather bitter and I find them difficult to eat at times, but combined with the sweetness of the berries and the musk of either the cheese and/or the pumpkin seeds, you’re lookin’ scrumptious.

blackberries-webBlackberry and Endive Salad

Ingredients: 1 endive (cut into thin slices), 1 small box of blackberries (cut into fourths), 1/4 cup soft goat cheese and/or ground pumpkin seeds, 1 1/2 tbs. high quality balsamic or sherry vinegar, 2 tbs. grapeseed or olive oil, a large pinch sea salt, a large pinch paprika

Method: If using goat cheese, put it on the edge of a mixing bowl.  Add endive and (optional) seeds, olive oil and vinegar.  Mix with a knife, scraping up the edges of the cheese, so that all is coated.  Slowly mix in blackberries.  Salt and paprika to taste.  Serve alongside your favorite tartine in a little mound topped with a few leaves of baby basil for something charming.

 

 

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Homemade Caramelized Honey Oat Bran Bars

oat bar with creamy seed butterIt’s almost like I just want to slide down the middle of this bar.  You know… imagine it.

Food can inspire strange behavior.  No food inspires even stranger, so let’s carry on now.

I find caramel made from honey to be a delightful little composition.  Especially if there is some form of sea salt added to it.  Perhaps a little oil.  Oh, lookey here, there’s both!  This recipe for a healthy and gluten-free granola bar has no refined sugar at all and is high in fiber (good for your arteries, yeah!).  A really nice natural energy boost by itself if you’re pragmatic, a healthy way to get that sweet fix after a meal if you’re a touch more hedonistic.  Like, a touch.

wrapped oat bars

Caramelized Honey Oat Bran Bar

-gluten, nut, soy, corn, egg-free.  Vegan with substitutions-

1/4 cup neutral oil

1/2 cup honey (or 1/3 cup agave nectar for vegan)

1/8 tsp. sea salt

1/2 tsp. pure vanilla (optional but good)

1 1/8 cup gluten-free oat bran (available at health food stores or online here, also known as “son d’avoine”)

Preparation time: 2 minutes

Cook time: about 4-5 minutes

Serves about 10-12 easily (makes a plaque of bars)

honey caramel1. Heat oil, honey, salt and optional vanilla in a saucepan over medium-high heat.  If you have a thermometer, insert it and bring mixture to 135 degrees F (270 degrees C) or until it bubbles like shown at left and starts to turn a little darker in color.  Immediately remove from heat.

oat bars2. Add oats to pot and stir with spatula until coated.  Let sit, stirring every 2 minutes, for 10 minutes to cook the oats to make them more digestible.

silpat granola3. Spread on a silicon baking sheet (or an oiled baking sheet or parchment paper) to desired thickness.  With spatula, or a dull knife, outline the shape you want to cut.  Let cool then cut and wrap individually to be all precious.

Since you cooked your sugar to a “soft-crack” phase, meaning it will be a harder caramel, let it cool to solidify a bit so it’s not just a gooey mess.  I’ve been storing my bars in the fridge, as it’s warmer out now, but you can store them room temperature if you want to keep them more taffy-like with the heat.  Ah, that sounds nice, too.

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Vaikas Burbule! Bubble Child in Lithuania

vaikas burbuleIt’s official.  Bubble Child is now in Lithuania!  (“Vaikas burbule” to be precise.)  But why this Baltic country?  Because shortly following the new Bubble Child cookbook, we will be partnering with my buddy Jared’s company Tervezo (whom I met studying abroad in Paris in 2007 when I was first hit with my French food obsession) to expand the media of the project here.  Filming at a Lithuanian lake house?  Ookkkkk.

buckwheatGetting to know the local cuisine has been surprising for me, especially in the realm of gluten-free.  A traditional ingredient is “grikiai”, which is buckwheat that is boiled and served warm for both breakfast as porridge and meals as a starch.  Despite “wheat” being in the name, buckwheat does not contain gluten, nor is it in the same family as traditional wheat or spelt.  Kasha* is a common name for roasted buckwheat, and is easy to find in health stores.  It is delicious served as you would rice and has a luxuriously earthy flavor.

Kasha (Roasted Buckwheat): For ideal cooking, boil 2 cups water with a large pinch sea salt, add 1 cup kasha (or toasted buckwheat grains), bring to boil again, cover, reduce heat to low, and let simmer for about 20 minutes, or until all liquid has been absorbed and grains are cooked al dente.  I recommend tossing in a few teaspoons high quality olive oil, paprika and lemon zest for a subtle flavor boost.

*If you cannot find the roasted version, toast your own grains in a sauté pan for 5 minutes over medium-high heat with no oil stirring frequently to increase flavor and reduce cooking time.  Then cook according to method above.

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how to make cabbage rad: BRAISE IT with Ginger and Caramel

huntington beach dead of winter<–My dear friend Parisa posted this very recently on facebook.  It’s the dead of winter.

I don’t get it.  My nose is running, I’ve got the average toll up to two layers of socks a day, and my skin is whiter than unrefined sugar.  (I guess that makes it refined sugar?)

cabbage and asian ingredientsI feel like a polar bear.  And in cold times, I want to eat cozy food: things braised, hearty, yet healthy.  Which brought to mind cabbage the other morning when I awoke without the slightest idea if there was even any space between the entry way to my nasal passage and the back of my head.  Stuffed up.

However, when I think of cabbage I think of Beatrix Potter.  That’s sweet, but not exciting.

When I think of ginger, caramel, and hot sauce I want to sweat a little.  In a good way.

So, the two had a playdate and this was born.  I’m on round three right now.  Yum.

ginger braised cabbageGinger Braised Cabbage

2 tbs. sesame seed oil (for Asian flavor) or pork’s fat or high heat oil (neutral flavor), divided
1/4 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp. grated fresh ginger
1 apple, cut into small cubes (you can peel if you don’t like the skins or leave them on)
zest of 1/2 lemon
2 tbs. honey
a large 1/2 tsp. tamari (gluten-free soy sauce)
a few dashes your favorite hot sauce (to taste, some like it hot, some don’t)
1 large curly cabbage, cut into thin strips (use either a mandolin or thin knife cuts)
1/4 cup high quality apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup water
1/8 tsp. dried thyme
1 tbs. fresh cilantro or parsley, chopped (optional)

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 1.5 hours minimum (about 3 hours maximum)
Serves 4-6

caramel onion garlic giner apples1. Heat 1 tbs. oil or fat over medium heat in large pot.  Add onion, sauté for about 3-4 minutes, until edges are coloring and caramelizing.  Add garlic and ginger.  Sauté another minute, until aromatic.  Add honey and lemon zest.  Cook for 30 seconds to start a caramel.  Once starting to turn more brown, add apple.  Stir to coat.  Let cook for another 2 minutes, or until the caramel is a deep amber brown, not dark brown and burnt.
2. At this point add tamari, hot sauce (optional), another 1 tbs. oil and your cabbage strips right away.  Coat with caramel, and cook for 2 minutes, until heated through.  Add apple cider vinegar, increase heat to high, and reduce until there is no liquid at the bottom, about 1-2 cabbage before cookingminutes, stirring to coat cabbage evenly.  Immediately add water, thyme, and optional fresh herbs.  Bring to a boil, stir cabbage a few times to bring the bottom pieces to the top, cover, and reduce heat to low.
3. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally to bring the bottom pieces to the top, for minimum 1.5 hours.  If the water is running out at the bottom, add a bit more.  At the end there should be a bit of water left, so if you braise it for 3 hours, you’ll have to add water half way through at the least.
finished braised cabbage<–and she’s done!

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Pizza!! Looks like dinner comes before dessert.

10 minute pizza breadFirst and foremost, I have to excuse myself for the week’s tardiness of this post.  I took a rather impromptu trip to Biarritz in the South of France after discovering that I had a very rare two-day break in my schedule, and baked away my days along the Basque coast.

Biarritz<–this took away my time from tallying up pizza vs. cake votes and then documenting a recipe.  I think you can understand.

my ideal house<–and this.

on the beach<–Je t’aime, summer.

Alas, to my surprise, more people wanted a quick pizza than a chocolate whiskey vanilla cake!  Hooray, you!  Dessert will have to be next week…

But for now: let’s get to crackin’ on that 10-Minute Garlic Tomato Pizza Bread.  No sautéing, no sauces, nothing canned, just you, whatever form of oven you’ve got, and some simple, pure ingredients.  Oh, and a knife.  Ninjaaa

Since it takes 10 minutes, we’ve got no seconds to waste.  Here we go:

10-Minute Garlic Tomato Pizza Bread

garlic tomatoes1 large tomato on the vine

2 cloves garlic, coarsely minced

1/2 tbs. herbes de provence, or a mix of dried herbs consisting of thyme/oregano/marjoram/basil/parsley/tarragon/and/or/chives

1-2 tbs. high heat oil, depending on the size of your tomato

1/2 tsp. sea salt + more if you really like salt

ground black pepper to taste (optional)

1 large slice either gluten-free bread, a large gluten-free crisp, a teff flour wrap, or homemade Polly Want a Sorghum Crackers? from the Bubble Child cookbook

1/4 cup grated aged sheep’s milk or goat’s milk cheese for those with lactose intolerances, or 1/4 cup grated asiago or emmenthal cheese for those who can and want to handle cow’s milk

Preparation time: 3 minutes

Cook time: 10 minutes

Serves 1

1. Pre-heat your oven to the broil setting… go!

2. Slice up tomatoes into less than 1/3 cm slices.  Spread with no overlap in some baking slicing tomatovessel/sheet.  Top with oil, herbs, and salt.  Flip each piece of tomato over once, then back onto itself so that the seasoning and oil is on both sides.  Top with garlic and move it around enough so that it is coated in both oil and tomato juice so it doesn’t burn.  Pop in the oven for about 5 minutes, keeping an eye on it so that it doesn’t burn.  (Black means burnt.)

3.  In the meantime, prepare your bread or crackers or crisps on a baking sheet.  You can either do tiny baby crackers with one tomato slice on each or one large crisp for something more of a light meal.  Make sure your cheese is ready.

4.  Once the tomatoes have cooked to where they are crispy on top and just starting to “wrinkle” a little, pull them out of the oven, put them on top of the cracker, top with cheese, and put back in the oven for 1-2 minutes, or until the cheese is melted.

That’s it.  So so good when served with a side salad and a glasses of wine.

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