Vegan Caprese Happiness

A couple weeks ago I picked up a gorgeous pine nut cheese from Blode Kuh, one of my favorite vendors at the Farmers Market. This cheese was screaming to be made into some version of a caprese salad. Voila! Most times, the simplest stuff using ingredients made with love, make the brightest and most tasty dishes.

vegan caprese with pine nut cheese & roasted pepper dressing

2 vine ripened tomatoes, sliced into fairly thick slices
1 small wheel of pine nut or other aged nut cheese
8-10 fresh basil leaves
1 red bell pepper
1 tbsp. (or more) extra virgin olive oil
1/2 clove garlic, chopped
Juice of 1 small lime
Splash of balsamic vinegar Read More

Spaghetti with Calabrese Broccoli & Nasturtium

spaghetti with calabrese broccoli

We all know broccoli is good for us. But one has to admit that the same “commercial” broccoli that we are relentlessly exposed to can get a little tiring. That is why I always get a little excited whenever I see less ubiquitous varieties of broccoli at the market. The particular calabrese in this recipe was small and tender, making it a great, quickly seared pasta stir fry. In retrospect, I wish I had taken a photo of it at the market, but the finished dish gives you a good sense of the anatomy of this broccoli. The green garlic adds a spring time garlic kick, and the nasturtium adds a slight peppery essence, for an uncomplicated, light springtime meal. By the way, if you are wondering where to find nasturtiums, they grow like crazy everywhere, so just tap into your “inner hunter-gatherer” and you should be okay. You might even have some growing in your own yard!

spaghetti with calabrese broccoli, green garlic & nasturtium blossoms

1/2 pound spaghetti or linguini (I prefer quinoa, brown rice, or whole wheat)
4 cups calabrese broccoli florets with stems and leaves
1/2 cup green garlic, sliced
Pinch of crushed chile peppers
1 tbsp. olive oil
Sea salt & fresh cracked black pepper to taste
2 tbsp. healthy butter of your choice (optional): Consider avocado, olive oil, or grass fed dairy butter
1/2 cup water reserved from pasta Read More

Green Garlic Almond Cheese

Nothing says Spring like fresh green garlic at the farmer’s market. I grabbed a bunch the other day, and before I could put it into my bag this idea to make fresh raw almond cheese with green garlic popped into my head. This is a fresh, quick cheese that slightly resembles the consistency of a ricotta, and offers a nice, nutritious, dairy-free creaminess. The green garlic made it heavenly. You can use it on a sandwich with vine tomatoes, as an hors d’oeuvre filling or topping- as pictured, or try it in layers of lasagna. Enjoy!

green garlic almond cheese

1 1/4 cup raw almonds, soaked in filtered water for at least 2 hours or overnight
2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
3 tbsp. olive oil
1 1/4 tsp. salt
2/3 cup water
1 tbsp. nutritional yeast
1/4-1/2 cup sliced green garlic (depending on how strong you want it to taste) Read More