Category Archives: Sauces, Dips, & Spreads

Jalapeño Black Bean & Coconut Spread

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I don’t know about you, but my holiday break has already flown by. Back to the grind on Monday which means now I am trying to plan for the ciaos with easy go to meals that are healthy and delcious.  And although I’m a huge fan of trader joes and all those wonderful dips and spreads they sell, I know that I can make them myself with just a little effort.  Typically I love traditional hummus but I know that tahini is a bit expensive and due to my moderate allergy 😦 I used light coconut milk to help smooth it out instead which worked great.  If you are looking for more coconut flavor I would suggest using full fat because it is rather undetectable in the finished result. Fortunately, I am really pleased with how this turned out and I plan to double or triple the recipe so it lasts at least a week 😉

And for us gluten freers (seems to be growing by the minute) I suggest buying brown rice tortilla’s and baking them- it turned out perfect!  This came together so fast it would be great for last minute guests, lunch or just a snack.  So grab your food processor and give this a whirl 😉

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Ingredients:

1 can black beans rinsed

1/3 cup light coconut milk (from the can)

2 jalapenos

2 cloves garlic

2 tsp ground cumin

2 tsp chili powder

1 tsp paprika

1-2 tbsp olive oil, or flavorless

2 tbsp minced fresh cilantro

Salt & pepper to taste

*optional, 1 tsp cayenne

Directions

-If baking tortilla chips, preheat oven to 375, coat in light oil and sprinkle with chili powder.  Bake 10-15 minutes.

-Wrap garlic and 1 jalapeno in tin foil and add to baking sheet with tortilla chips. If your not baking chips I would suggest doing a quick saute with the garlic and 1 jalapeno so it is not too strong.

-Once they’re both cooked, add to food processor and do a rough chop.

-Deseed your raw jalapeno & add the rest of the ingredients.  Puree & season to taste.

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Creamy Corn & Bacon Dip

So it is officially the last weekend of summer for me before all the craziness of school, commuting and all other grown up things begin. I will miss watching a ridiculous amount of daytime television, browsing hundreds of food blogs for hours, and testing out all kinds of elaborate recipes I will no longer have the time to invest in. Simultaneously I am really looking forward to getting back into a routine and actually having a bit more responsibility than figuring out how to DVR my favorite shows to avoid any commercial watching at all. But before all of this happens I need to savor the last bit of summer with a sweet, salty, smokey and undeniably savory dip that I would normally not indulge in.

Enter the Creamy Corn and Bacon Dip

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I was actually thinking of calling this dip, “Foolproof Way to Hook New Friends” because the bf and I were invited to dinner at our new couple friends house and I of course had to bring something. We have been hanging out fairly frequently and its been great to have made new friends since moving to a new apartment. But I wanted to make sure they really liked us 😉 and what better way to bribe friendship than with food? And when I say food I really mean bacon. I mean come on, who doesn’t like bacon? Even myself although I do eat a lot of vegetarian and vegan meals cannot deny that lingering smokey smell, uniquely crunchy and chewy texture and heavenly salty bite. So when I spotted the original recipe for this in my giant cookbook I knew it was a sure thing. But the recipe seemed rather uninspiring to me as it only called for boiling the corn and throwing it together with ick- cream cheese? I mean I know this is a staple in many easy dips but the sounds of tasting cream cheese with corn and bacon just wasn’t floating my boat. And especially if I am going to have fresh corn there is no question that it is going to be met with butter in a sauté pan- there really is no other way to have it.

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Plus I wanted to make sure this dip would be something that if I was so inclined to eat a seriously large portion I wouldn’t have the consequences of dairy to deal with. So I thought of what I could sub the cream cheese with that would not be too heavy, economical and have a chameleon like quality about it. Aha! The secret ingredient immediately came to me! And having the satisfaction of watching the bf inhaling this without knowing he is eating _ _ _ _ while I attempt to hide my cheshire cat grin totally confirmed that I indeed would be using this. And let me tell you, even after I told them what they were eating, it didn’t stop them from continuing to scrape the container after dinner. Victorious!

So if you are looking to make new friends or you just want to be the coolest person at a party, do yourself a favor and make this dip.

Ingredients:
3 ears corn
1 shallot, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2-3 tbsp real mayo
8 slices favorite bacon
3 tbsp butter
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp chopped fresh chives and bacon bits for garnish

Secret Ingredient:
1/2 package firm tofu, drained

Directions:
-Take out half package of tofu (6-8oz) and drain with paper towel. Squeeze to get as much moisture out as possible.

-Preheat oven to 400 degrees and cook bacon on tinfoil lined baking sheet for about 15 minutes or when it is just starting to crisp up.

-Meanwhile, using a large enough sauté pan on medium heat, add 2 tbsp butter and 2 tbsp olive oil to the pan. Cut your corn off the cob and add to pan. Season generously with good sea salt and pepper.
-Sauté for roughly 3 minutes and then add shallot and garlic and last tbsp of butter and olive oil. You want to caramelize the corn which should take a total of 10-15 minutes of sautéing. Once cooked set aside and bacon should be done around the same time.
-Once they are both cool enough to handle, add your corn to a food processor or blender along with the mayo and blend until creamy. It will still have some texture.
-Next add the tofu (crumble a bit to make it easier for the food processor) and blend until it is mixed throughout.
-Add the slices of bacon which you can either slice or break into pieces with your hand. I chopped it into small bits. Pulse a few times to incorporate the bacon throughout.
-Taste and season according to your taste, I added around 1/2 tsp himalayan salt and few good grinds of black pepper.
-Place in microwave safe to-go container (so you can heat it up at party-better that way) and top with chives and bacon bits.

-Make sure you dress cute and pop a breath mint because you are about to be the life of the party 😉

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Kitchen Therapy

So it’s been awhile since I’ve posted, but it’s only because I’m finally starting my summer. My neuroscience class ended and I finally feel like a person again. And although I haven’t posted I have been cooking- a lot.

Say hello to my little celebratory pineapple-mango guava rum delite to kickoff my summer- and maybe it was 12pm in the afternoon after my neuro final 😉20120713-095128.jpg

On fourth of July I had to have my meaty mushroom millet burger which I decided to have some spicy sweet potato fries and my favorite summertime snack- tomatoes I know weird right? I probably go through a container of grape tomatoes every three days and having lots of fresh basil growing outside doesn’t hurt.

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Oh and that cheese there, is Daiya, and it’s AMAZING! Seriously you have to try it if you are curious it is SO worth it and yes it is a bit pricy at 3-4$ a bag, but just once I encourage you to splurge. And don’t worry it is very melty, it just doesn’t look like it because I was doing 1,000 things in the kitchen and didn’t time it right.

I also made some Apple Cinnamon Goji Berry Granola with Toasted Coconut- needless to say this has been a huge hit and is almost gone.

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Some super satisfying vegan and gluten free comfort food, aka Three Pepper Loaded Pizza on Polenta Pizza Crust (half has Daiya and the other half has shredded Mexican cheese with dairy)

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I finally made Tahini with raw sesame seeds that I roasted myself- if you decide to do this don’t leave the kitchen! Those babies can burn quick and you don’t want to have to throw it out. Oh and did I mention- it is SO good! I will never buy store bought again, and why should I when a bag of sesame seeds cost 2.50$ a pound where a 10oz jar can be at least around 6$?

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And a whole bunch of other things

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Front Right: Pumpkin Seed Butter with Cinnamon and Honey
Middle: Sweet & Spicy Curried Lentil Hummus
Back Left: Green Cabbage Kimchi
Back Right: Dye free, preservative free Pickled Ginger

And of course one would think that I should be satisfied by this abundance of food.  Whereas I am refraining daily from buying an ice cream maker because I know the damage that could be done ;).  But on those hot summer nights where nothing feels better and all I want to do is drive literally 2 miles to the soft-serve, gluten free, 8 calories an 1oz! speciality store where I can have cookies and cream which is practically taboo in the gluten free world.  Yes it really is only 8 calories an ounce, and it is really freaking good and I don’t know how they do it.

So I hope you are enjoying your summer as much as I am enjoying mine, now its off to reading in the sunshine!

(If anyone wants recipes for anything let me know and I will share 🙂 )

Brown rice and Bell Pepper Collard Wraps with Basil Lime Dressing

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Collard wraps have become one of my favorite ways to eat lately. Thats of course only after you figure out that you can’t over stuff them so they can be wrapped properly. And surprisingly 1 leaf produces 2 very substantial sized wraps. Initially for this dish I was not planning to wrap it up (thats what she said ;)) and I was just going to eat it is a pilaf but then I was craving a basil-y lime sauce and then I had a lightbulb moment. I am so glad I did because this was SO GOOD! I know it’s so simple but it was SO satisfying and trust me I never thought I would say that about something wrapped in “lettuce”.

Other than cooking the rice (which involves little-no skill) this meal can easily be prepared in under 20 minutes. It is also very versatile so mix and match your favorite flavors. Mine was vegan but the BF did without the lettuce (go figure 😉 ) and sautéed some of the jalapeño chicken sausage to add in. These wraps can also travel fairly well and can make a great lunch, just keep the sauce on the side and make sure you wrap them well.

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Sorry I know my pictures aren’t the best- I’m always rushing as the BF sits there waiting to eat as I am attempting to take 30+ photos.

Ingredients:
1 cup brown rice, uncooked

1/2 onion of choice
1 red bell pepper
1 green bell pepper
2 garlic cloves
2 ears of corn

Directions
-Cook brown rice according to directions. Try to have this ready for when the vegetables are ready you can just mix everything together.

-Heat skillet over medium-high heat, add oil/butter and sauté onions and corn for 2 minutes. Add chopped bell peppers and sauté for 3-5 minutes until they start to soften. Add garlic and saute for 3 minutes or until everything is evenly cooked. Season with salt and pepper. Other optional seasoning could be chipotle, paprika and cayenne. I kept it simple because I was all about the sweet lime basal dressing.

Sweet Lime Basil Dressing:
2-3 tbsp avocado
1 tsp nutritional yeast
2 drops stevia, or more to taste
1/2 lime juiced
1 tbsp vegan sour cream
1/4 cup lightly packed fresh basil
water to thin to desired consistency

I threw everything in magic bullet

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To assemble:
Take 1 large collard leaf and cut of the rib so you have 2 wraps. Spread dressing in a line down the center and then lay the brown rice mixture on top. I have found the easiest way to wrap is fold the rib cut side over to make a base which holds the bottom in place. Then just start at 1 end and roll while continuing to hold the bottom piece in place. It takes a bit of practice and still can get a bit messy while you eat it but thats the fun part 😉

This recipe could serve 4 but since I’m feeding a hefty man appetite it was more like 2.5 hehe 🙂

Avocado Mac & Cheese

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A few weeks ago I saw a post on avocado Mac and cheese and I wanted to eat my computer screen. My obsession with avocado never ceases to amaze me, I really never get sick of them. I would much rather OD {over dose ;)} on a “fatty” avocado than a fatty burger. Plus they can be transformed into anything. That is why I loved the idea of making them into a Mac and cheeseee, yum.

Oddly enough when I was craving this I was also wanting some nutty mushrooms and eggplant that was just chilling (no pun intended 😉 ) in the fridge. So before I made the sauce (which only takes a minute, really) I sautéed some leeks with sliced mushrooms and diced eggplant. The combination of the nutty, earthy mushrooms with the leeks and richness of avocado- heaven. I enjoyed this bowl of comfort sitting in silence as boyfriend was napping after we had returned from going out to lunch. Yes you heard me correctly, we had just got back from lunch except there was a bit of an issue.

You see we had just gotten back into town after visiting my school and after I read yelp reviews of about 30 different restaurants I had decided we go to this Thai-Malaysian restaurant. I attempted to order the vegetarian Thai curry and continued even after I asked if there was soy sauce. (it’s a sneaky gluten carrier.) I ordered anyway because usually in curries it is only in small amounts and I was expecting a coconut milk style dish. When our food arrived my stomach dropped. It was like they took a cup of oil and a cup of soy sauce and drenched the vegetables. Even if i could have soy I would still not eat that- it looked like some of the greasiest “Chinese food” I had ever seen.

After that I was not a happy camper and bf gave me some of his but at this point I just wanted to go home and make myself something I know I would like. Then I proceeded to break down because of the stress I feel in general now of eating out and how I have to make sure what I am eating is safe. Not only do I not want to be that person with a list of criteria but the worst of it is when people judge you about it. As if it is a choice or that it is for some vanity. So right now I still struggle to enjoy eating out because of the worry of whether or not they can or care to accommodate my needs.

Have any of you gluten free-ers, dairy-free, vegan…etc ever been in this situation? How do you handle it. Feel free to share your tips on the stresses of eating out with allergies.

So with this lengthy story I give you an extremely satisfying, gluten free and optional vegan avocado Mac and cheese.

Ingredients for sauce: makes 1 serving
1/2 small avocado
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
5 basil leaves
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 garlic clove
1/4 cup unsweetened non-dairy milk (I used flax milk-my new favorite love)
Sprinkle of herbs de Provence
*optional 1 tbsp goat cheese

Directions:
Place garlic clove in food processor to mince. Add the rest of ingredients till you get a smooth consistency. Use more or less milk for desired thickness.

For sautéed veg:
1/4 cup each eggplant diced, mushrooms sliced, leeks sliced

Mince roughly 1/4 cup leeks and sauté them over medium-high heat for two minutes. Add the eggplant (I used a non-stick pan because eggplant is like a sponge and sprayed the pan a few times with non-stick spray to brown eggplant.) Add the mushrooms during last two minutes of browning the eggplant.

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I then used spiraled zucchini only because I was impatient and didn’t feel like bowling my quinoa pasta. Next time I will be waiting though. Either way it was amazing. Next time I might add seem toasted slivered almonds to up the nuttiness factor.

Just toss everything together and season with salt and pepper to taste.

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Cilantro Chickpea Crackers & Easy Tomato Chutney GF

Sorry it has been so long since my last post.  Life is going 1,000,000 miles an hour with lots of change in the air.  New school, new home and new work- all in less than 1 months time.  So needless to say I have not stopped cooking but it’s having the time to post them.  In addition, my computer is on the brink and I think it has officially died.  Oh how timing is everything.

The gluten free saga continues on but today with great success in my first cracker recipe.  I have been trying to come up with convienent “carb” type snacks so I can easily grab something before I head to a long day of school. {which starts in only two weeks!}

Yesterday I woke up fairly early, around 6:30 and before I knew it I had found a cracker recipe that I thought I would attempt.  I have always thought it looked like such a lengthy process and been turned off by the idea.  But I have a lot of cilantro to use up and I hate spending $4 or more dollars on a small bag of gluten free chips that I would prefer not contain tons of soy products. {I have noticed that I have a bad reaction to soy and I am avoiding it}

So here are my lovely chickpea crackers

Usually I do not like the taste of chickpea flour in baked goods but for some reason it really worked here.  Perhaps it is the Indian spices that covered it up, although they still had a “neutral” flavor.  The only part I will advise you about is “kneading” and “rolling”. Flour your hands, the batter issuper sticky.  But don’t worry that problem is easily fixed with some sorghum flour lightly coating your hands and the rolling mat.

You can find the original recipe here.  The only thing I did not use is the methi powder.  It has a bitter taste and I don’t care for it so I just omitted it.  I also under cooked them slightly so they are a bit softer instead of super crunchy.  I really loved the result.

I also made an AMAZING tomato chutney- seriously I don’t think I can not have this is my fridge, I plan to make a huge batch after trying it out yesterday.  It is crazy good.

I used 5 vine ripened tomatoes and omitted the cornstarch.  Check out the recipe here

This was so good I wanted to eat it with a spoon.  At 7 in the morning.  Is there something wrong with that? 😉

This would be very convienent for a quick to prepare appetizers or snack for last minute guest.  Plus it is very budget friendly.

Indian Spiced Jasmine Rice with Edamame & Snap Peas

I must admit, this recipe totally surprised me.  I really wasn’t expecting to like it as much as I did-especially considering I used frozen edamame and snap peas.  Let’s just say I made this for bf to bring to work and then I ended up eating some the night before for dinner-whoops 😉This sauce recipe came inspired from this GIANT recipe book I have- literally it is like a cooking bible.  It has everything from appetizers, to soups but then how to’s like make your own cheese, pastry, plus different cuisines from over the world… it is 700 pages of overwhelming deliciousness.  So awhile back I wrote down the recipe for a cilantro coconut sauce and only months later did I finally make it.  This partly has to do with the fact that I need to use up the frozen vegetables that have been in my freezer too long and partly that bf has been struck with a sinus infection so I wanted to make something that would help “clear them up”.

Another HUGE book I am enjoying right now is all about Ayurveda and eastern medicine.  It goes into detail about hundreds of herbs, spices, foods, vitamins, plants… and how they help heal the body.  Ginger is hopefully now a well known food that has an endless list of health benefits but specifically does a great job at clearing the sinuses.  Who knew cilantro did as well?  Just some of the things cilantro is capable of:

  • Acts as a natural anti-septic and anti-fungal agent for skin disorders like fungal infections and eczema
  • Contains immune-boosting properties
  • Acts as an expectorant
  • Helps promote healthy liver function.
  • Reduces minor swelling
  • Strong general antioxidant properties
  • Disinfects and helps detoxify the body

Another healing spice I hadn’t known about before was coriander.  Although coriander is the seed of the plant cilantro (sometimes the name is used interchangeably) it has many of the same health benefits and is often used in teas for allergies, hay fever…etc

And as for the rest of the ingredients, my rule of thumb is if it is green or grows in the ground then it is definitely good for you :).  The verdict here is that this is super easy to prepare, has a depth of flavor and is a big bowl of good for you comfort.  YUM!  Also, a huge plus here is that using frozen veggies is a big money saver not to mention it saves cooking time too!

Ingredients: Serves 2

1/2 cup uncooked jasmine rice

1/2 onion

2 garlic cloves

1 heaping tbsp fresh ginger

1 package steam fresh snap peas

1/2 cup edamame, thawed

1/2 cup coconut milk (I used silk the carton because I was too lazy to open can of full fat)

1/2 packed cup fresh cilantro

1 tbsp ground coriander

pinch cumin & chili powder

splash rice wine vinegar

few tbsp red chili sauce (I used homemade)

Directions:

-Cook your rice according to package directions (word of advice- keep an eye, jasmine rice cooks rather quickly and I have noticed it needs less water than directions call for)

-Over medium heat in a deep enough sauce pan, use 1 tbsp coconut oil and saute onion 2-3 minutes.  Add ginger and garlic saute 1 minute.  Add ground coriander, chili powder and cumin.  Add thawed veggies and toss everything well.  Add coconut milk and cilantro and stir everything very well.  Turn heat down to simmer and stir in rice.  Add rice vinegar and sweet chili sauce.  Season to taste.

This ended up having so much flavor and the aroma from the spices and jasmine rice was divine.  Plus it comes together really quickly which is great for quick dinners or make ahead lunches.  It’s a super delicious way to soothe your sinuses and help boost immunity! 🙂

Super Smooth White Bean Hummus, 2 Ways

Hummus is one of those things that I go through stages of obsession and then I forget about it for a few months.  Well right now it has become an obsession and after trying a white bean version I might not go back to chickpeas, (well for a little while.)  It becomes so smooth and almost has a richer flavor.  You must try if you have not had a white bean version.

I was inspired to make my own because whenever I am grocery shopping I stop to look at the flavors to see if there is anything I feel worth buying.  That is until I reach in to grab one and then I see how overpriced it is.  Considering you can buy all the ingredients for dirt cheap there really is no excuse not to.  Plus this requires no cooking, aka-  It really doesn’t get any easier.

Even if you are not a bean fan, hummus can be your turning point.

I have found the secret to really good hummus is adding cooked ingredients (sorry raw garlic).  Here I have done two different versions, one which is fairly classic and the other with some Indian flare.  They are both SO delicious and they will make eating veggies way more interesting.  Your friends and family will think you bought these 😉

Lately I have been enjoying hummus on wraps with slices of avocado, cauliflower rice, & mixed greens.  A spicy dipping sauce never hurts either.

Ingredients:

1 can white beans, drained and rinsed

1 head garlic, top sliced off

1 onion of choice- I used white

1/4 cup tahini

1 lemon

*optional, fresh chives

1/2 cup eggplant (1/4 of a whole)

1/2-1 tbsp garam masala

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Line baking sheet with tin foil and wrap the garlic head, onion and eggplant in separate foil leaving an opening for air to release at the top.  Roast for 15-20 minutes till slightly brown.

Allow to cool and place the beans, lemon juice, garlic, onion & tahini in the food processor/blender and whip until very smooth.  I love fresh herbs and added a little chives.   This is version 1. (Traditionally cumin is added but I didn’t want any.)

Roasted Eggplant Hummus: {on the left}

-Take 1/2 of version one and add your roasted eggplant (I left skin on for extra vitamins and minerals.  Add garam masala and blend.  It’s that easy.  Season both to taste with salt and pepper.

Amazing Accidental Skinny Guacamole

So yesterday I wanted to play with this hemp, mint and cilantro pesto recipe I had made a few days ago.  I liked it but I just forgot where I was going with it. (recipe ADHD)  So I then became inspired by a few sauces I have been checking out in Blissful Bites (love it!!) amazing vegan cookbook.

Then something magical happened.  I made a super healthy “I feel like I’m cheating” Guacamole- on accident.

It started out with me trying to make a pseudo green goddess dressing and I threw 1 whole zucchini in the vita-mix instead of lathering it in oil.  I saw that the author Christy Morgan made a dressing using cucumber instead of oil and I loved the idea.  The only problem with me is they sometimes bother my stomach so I always use zucchini instead.  I blended it with the pesto I made and it was coming out too dry and chunky.  I needed something to smooth it out.  DING avocado!!

So I popped around 1/4 cup avocado (what I had left over) into the blender, tasted it and then I realized,

I made really healthy guacamole!!!  And it taste really freaking good!!

Now since I used the minty cilantro hemp pesto it had a bit of a spin on the traditional but it was amazing!  I added a bit more lime and a bunch of chives to give it an onion-y bite without the chunks of onion- perfection.

And guess what? If you want to eat the entire cup serving it makes, you can- and not feel guilty about it. You could even make 2 cups and still not feel guilty about it.  Instead you can feel really good because not only is it low in calories but it’s high in vitamins like C & A as well as high in minerals like Calcium, Magnesium and fiber!  Not to mention the herbs pack a punch of nutrients and of course those lovely little hemp seeds!  I am so excited about this recipe and it is a for sure item for my Skinny Cocktail Party I’m planning to have in the future. 🙂

Ingredients:

1 medium zucchini, washed with skins left on

1/4 cup avocado

1 tbsp hemp seeds

3 tbsp fresh mint

3 tbsp fresh chives

1/4 cup cilantro

juice of 1 lime

Directions:

Place everything but zucchini and avocado into food processor.  Once well mixed add chopped zucchini (just to make blending easier) and avocado.  Taste to check seasoning.  Refridgerate until ready to eat 🙂

Calories in entire recipe using 1 zucchini around 180, (2 zucchini add around 45 calories)

15g carbs

12g fat (omit hemp seeds to cut in 1/2)

6g protein

7g fiber

OR

15 calories per 2 tbsp!!!

If you want to make this taste more like traditional guacamole:

-Omit the mint and add handful of grape tomatoes, 1/4 cup onion, and a sprinkle of garlic powder.  But I really encourage you to try this it is amazing.

I wanted to have some seaweed so I put in a nori roll with cauliflower rice, some crumbled brown rice chips for crunch, and shaved carrot.  I need a bamboo roller but I’m too lazy and impatient, ah someday.

Walnut Cream Sauce with Mushrooms & Sweet Red Peppers

Toasted walnuts for me = zilch will power.  Especially right out of the oven-I’m easily getting my share of omega’s for the day.  There’s just something about them that I cannot resist.  So I wanted to think of a way to extend that flavor I love without eating my daily calorie needs in 5 minutes.  After making my first cashew cream sauce I thought why not try it with walnuts?

Using the same soaking and blending technique I made a walnut cream base.  On low heat I sauteed some onion, garlic & mushrooms to add some “meatyness”.  To say that I am excited about my growing herb garden is a complete understatement.  I am using my organic fresh herbs {thanks mom :)} whenever I can-they enhance food incredibly in taste, presentation and flavor.  Fresh chives were the perfect choice.

Not only does this dish make an exceptionally tasty and healthy one, but it’s super fast to prepare.  Besides soaking the water for roughly 2 hours, your effort requires maybe 10 minutes?  Depending on your slicing skills 😉

You could also use other spring/summer vegetables like summer squash, baby spinach (all year round for me) eggplant, asparagus…etc.

Ingredients: 1 serving

1/4 cup toasted walnuts, soaked in warm water for 2 hours

1/4 vidalia onion

1-2 cloves garlic

optional-1 tbsp nutritional yeast

4 baby bella mushrooms sliced, or other favorite

1/4 cup roasted red bell pepper

few tbsp fresh chives

Directions:

Create walnut base by saving about half of the walnut soaked water.  Place walnuts in food processor and 1/4 cup fresh purified water, (or less for thicker sauce).

In deep enough saute pan, on low-medium heat, saute onion for 2 minutes and add mushrooms.  Add garlic after 3 minutes and saute until fragrant, 1-2 minutes.  Add walnut cream base and reduce down to your desired consistency.  Add walnut water reserve for more nutty flavor and reduce down again as desired.

To preserve the health benefits of the red bell peppers I add them in right before serving and top with fresh chives.  I also had some left over quinoa for protein that added even more nutty flavor 🙂

You could of course have this dish over your favorite pasta and add a sprinkle of parmesan cheese but I kept my vegan and gluten free.  You could add real cream but in my opinion and experience I find it to dim the flavors and give dishes a bland taste.

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