Stovetop Smashed Potatoes | With Creamy Lemon-Dill Tahini Dipping Sauce

As a youngster in the 1980s – like most kids then and now – I’d base my opinion of a restaurant almost exclusively on the way in which the food was packaged, and of equal importance, on the swag that accompanied the meal. This meant that fast food chains ranked very high in my list of top dining establishments, namely McDonald’s with it Happy Meals (anyone remember those highly-coveted Muppet Babies figurines?) and Burger King with its 3 packs of mini hamburgers aka ‘Burger Bundles’, which for all their frivolity were likely the prequel to the now omnipresent ‘slider’. I don’t recall particularly enjoying the food at these places; I was sold on them for the toys and whimsically-presented meals alone.
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Back then I hadn’t yet acquired an awareness of the marketing tactics of fast food chains, hell bent as they are on getting kids addicted to bad-for-you foods via an assortment of crafty ploys, from gimmicky packaging and tie-ins to the latest TV show or blockbuster movie, to on-site ‘play places’ where kids can work off their soda-induced sugar highs. The guile and cunning of these companies really is extraordinary; I wouldn’t be at all surprised to find out their marketing team include someone with a degree in child psychology – someone with the know-how to exploit the addictive potential of their young customers’ developing psyches!
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Despite the cynicism I’ve acquired in adulthood about pretty much every aspect of fast food, I still recall with real fondness the experience of my parents taking me to eat at White Spot, a chain of burger joints exclusive to Western Canada. When I was little, White Spot earned my intense affection for its kids meal called the Pirate Pak, tantalizingly served in a cardboard schooner, complete with a sail impaled on a straw and best of all, a gold foil covered chocolate dubloon. Sure, the Pirate Pak was White Spot’s own little ruse to entice children to eat at their restaurants, but you have to admit it’s a pretty cool concept, and refreshingly void of any sort of corporate tie-in.
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While in recent years White Spot has ditched its soda jerk vibe and morphed into a somewhat generic family restaurant, I still eat there regularly – if not for the atmosphere then for the delicious provolone-portobello veggie burger and cheap pints of Nat Bailey Pale Ale. Their brunches are also the best in town (I even requested to be taken their this past Mother’s Day). The smashed potatoes in this post (which are basically potatoes which have been boiled, flattened slightly, then pan-fried until crispy in a skillet) are my attempt to emulate the ones that are served alongside practically every item on the White Spot brunch menu.
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While they’re great as a side dish for breakfast or brunch – I think they’d go particularly well with a frittata or omelette – the creamy lemon-dill tahini sauce I made to accompany them makes them a perfect appetizer or snack, too. Typically the thought of pairing something pan-friend with something creamy strikes me as a bit much – but here there’s not that much to feel guilty about, as the potatoes are fried using minimal oil, and the sauce’s creaminess comes from a blend of tahini and egg-free mayo. OK, it’s still not the saintliest of recipes, but I guarantee it’s better for you than a Happy Meal 🙂
Recipe: Stovetop Smashed Potatoes | With Creamy Lemon-Dill Tahini Dipping Sauce
Ingredients:
Stovetop Smashed Potatoes
  • 16 red potatoes, scrubbed clean (choose potatoes that are no larger than 2″ in diameter)
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Creamy Lemon-Dill Tahini Sauce

  • 1 medium garlic bulb
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • Zest and juice of 1 medium lemon
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons vegan mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh dill
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method:

Prepare potatoes

  1. Place potatoes in a large stock pot and cover with water.
  2. Bring pot to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.
  3. Let potatoes cook until tender all the way through, about 15-20 minutes.
  4. Drain and set aside to cool.

Roast garlic for sauce

  1. While potatoes are cooking, preheat oven to 425F.
  2. Peel outmost layers of skin from garlic bulb.
  3. Place garlic on an approx. 6″ x 6″ piece of aluminum foil and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
  4. Bundle aluminum foil tightly around garlic.
  5. Place in oven and roast until garlic cloves are soft, about 30 minutes.
  6. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.

Finish sauce

  1. Once garlic has cooled enough to handle, carefully remove skin from each clove (the clove should separate easily from the skin).
  2. Place garlic cloves in food processor along with tahini, vegan mayonaise, lemon zest and juice.
  3. Blend everything until completely smooth.
  4. Taste mixture and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  5. Transfer mixture to small bowl and stir in minced dill.
  6. Cover and store in fridge until needed.

Finish potatoes

  1. Once potatoes are cool enough to handle, flatten each one slightly. Do this by holding potato between your index finger and thumb of one hand and pressingly down gently with the heel of your other hand. Don’t press too hard or your potato will fall apart!
  2. After flattening each potato, heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  3. Once oil is hot, transfer your flattened potatoes to the skillet. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
  4. Pan fry potatoes until crispy, about 3-4 minutes on each side.
  5. Remove from heat and serve, topping each portion with a dollop or two of Creamy Lemon-Dill Tahini Sauce. Eat!

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{Vegan} Asparagus and Sweet Pea Fettuccine Alfredo | With White Wine and Lemon

Our new house is proving to be the gift that gives on giving in the faulty appliance department. It started with the archaic beast of a cathode ray tube TV we dragged in from the shed when we first moved in; our initial plan was to put this relic to use until we could retrieve our flat screen from the storage locker. Evidently the years it spent mouldering out back proved to be too much for this already obsolete goggle box, for upon plugging it into the wall it began scrolling itself (!?) through various static-y channels before going completely dark, presumably forever. As we aren’t avid enough fans of TV to attempt to trouble shoot and repair such an ancient piece of technology, the next day it was dispatched to the local waste disposal station along with the teal wall-to-wall carpet ripped up from the bedroom floor.

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I won’t reiterate the problems we were having with our screwy toilet and besides, a toilet doesn’t really count as an appliance. I will mention briefly that those issues seemed to have resolved themselves, something which has had a surprisingly significant impact on my personal quality of life index; being able to flush and be done with the matter is pretty awesome! The next piece of appliance drama came in the form of a humongous ball of fluff – possibly years worth (seriously, I could have made a throw pillow out of it ) – extracted from the lint trap in the dryer. That’s it. The real drama played itself out in my brain, where the fluff ball caught ablaze and burned the whole house down while we slept. Morbid thoughts! My inner neurotic always has a field day with potential hazards.

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The most recent appliance debacle occurred just a couple days ago and nearly toppled my plans to make this moreish pasta dish. In the midst of reheating some food in the oven I noticed a few wisps of smoke rising from behind the stove. This wasn’t merely ‘burning food’ smoke (which would have freaked me out enough), but the far more menacing, hot and plastically, ‘electrical component failure’ variety. I switched off the oven and started panicking a little – not like the time flames leapt into the air when I threw a bunch of kale into a skillet containing overheated olive oil, that was out-and-out hysterics – but panicking enough. Mike (an electrician by trade, hallelujah) was summoned from the front lawn and was able to quickly ID the problem (something with one of the connections in the wiring) and fix it – and in so doing put an end to sinister thoughts of preparing this dish in the microwave.

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Alas, I’m back with yet another cashew cream sauce recipe. I can’t help it – the stuff is just so versatile and delish I want to throw it into everything these days! There’s a fun little game I’ve been playing with Mike – I call it ‘vegan bombing’ and it involves feeding him vegan dishes and seeing if he’s able to discern the absence of eggs and dairy products. My cashew cream recipes, I’m proud to report, ALWAYS pass the test! What’s more, they don’t leave you with that depressing ‘I just consumed my weight in butter and cream’ feeling with which conventional cream sauces probably leave you. I don’t know about you, but white wine alfredo sauce totally makes me think of the 80s – you know, yuppies yucking it up on yachts, Hall and Oates, gigantic shoulder pads, stuff along those lines of cocaine – but I love it all the same! Combined with fresh asparagus, sweet green peas and lemon, it’s like a mouthful o’ Spring 🙂

What is your favourite way to cook asparagus? I’m always looking for new ideas!

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Recipe: Asparagus and Sweet Pea Fettuccine Alfredo | With White Wine and Lemon

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup plain cashews (+ water for soaking)
  • 225g fettuccine pasta (or your choice of gluten free pasta)
  • 3 cups vegetable broth (I used low sodium broth)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 3 large garlic cloves, finely sliced
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 3/4 cup sweet green peas (thawed if using frozen)
  • 12 thin asparagus stalks, tough ends removed
  • 1/3 cup white wine (I used Pinot Blanc)
  • Zest of 1 medium lemon
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method:

1. Place cashews in a small bowl and cover with water. Let soak for an hour. Drain and rinse.

2. Place soaked cashews and vegetable broth in a blender or food processor. Blend for two minutes or until cashews and broth form a smooth liquid. Set aside.

3. Fill a medium skillet with cold water and bring to a gentle boil. Add asparagus and reduce to a simmer. Let asparagus cook just until bright green and tender crisp (this should only take a minute or two). Immediately drain asparagus and transfer to a bowl of ice water (this will ensure asparagus doesn’t over cook).

4. Once asparagus is cold, remove from water and cut into 1″ pieces. Set aside until needed.

5. Cook fettuccine according to package instructions, or until al dente. Drain and rinse. Set aside until needed.

6. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and red pepper flakes and saute just until garlic is golden brown.

7. Reduce heat slightly. Sprinkle flour into skillet and whisk continuously until a smooth paste forms.

8. Slowly pour cashew and broth mixture into skillet, whisking continuously until everything is incorporated and a smooth, creamy sauce forms.

9. Stir in wine and lemon zest. Taste sauce and season to taste with salt and pepper.

10. Fold in pasta, peas and asparagus.

11. Serve immediately, topping each portion with freshly ground black pepper. Eat!

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Springtime French Green Lentil and Pearl Barley Soup

In my last post I detailed a few of the nefarious finds we’ve made at our new house: the elaborate spider’s nest in the wall, the sketchy crow bar marks on the front door, the kitschy linoleum underlying the lurid teal carpet in the bedroom, both of which are now on their way to the municipal waste station. The weirdness of this flooring situation didn’t hit me until last night. Why was there linoleum in the bedroom to begin with – was that a thing in the late 1960s? And was covering it with teal carpet really the best solution? Oh well, there’s no accounting for taste. That being said, the creative mind responsible for said carpet would likely be equally offended by my design sense .

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It’s not my intention to sound like a big old squeaky wheel about the house – believe me, I am more than relieved to be out of the RV even if it means dodging the odd Black Widow and seeing various shades of teal wherever I look. But there’s one last undesirable feature of the house I’d like to mention. The toilet. Yes, I bring up toilets way too often on this blog. But it’s worth mention that, in a cruel twist of fate – after 7 1/2 months of persevering with the clog-prone septic system in the RV – the toilet in the house is… well, I’ll be nice and say it has personality. Indeed, it makes disturbing gurgling sounds, its water surges threatening toward the rim, it flushes ‘normally’ only if you hold the lever down just so. I’m starting to think I must have been an incompetent plumber in a previous life, and am paying my due now via a series of faulty toilets.

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The house has also coughed up some pretty cool booty (as in stuff, not the other kind). My SO has actually owned this house for several years, but was renting it to his sister until we moved in last month. Evidently he’d used the cupboards in the laundry room as a dumping ground for miscellaneous junk before he moved out years ago, because when I went to clean out said cupboards I unearthed – amongst several pieces of ancient Tupperware – an ice cream maker straight from the 1980s (remember when these were all the rage?), an unused wok (score) and bafflingly, a single leather glove – which made me wonder if I had a piece of forensic evidence on my hands.

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Over the weekend we had a very welcome spate of warm, dry weather here in the Lower Mainland ,which prompted everyone to simultaneously shed their fleece and Gore-Tex and flee into the out-of-doors. This week, however, the Spring showers returned, putting me back in the mood for warm food. The seasonal ingredients that are beginning to make an appearance in grocery stores inspired me to whip up this easy springtime soup featuring French green lentils, pearl barley, sweet carrots, shallots, leeks, white mushrooms, spring onions, lemon and fresh basil! Apart from asparagus (which I’ve yet to come across unfortunately), nothing heralds the arrival of Spring like lemon and fresh herbs 🙂

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Recipe: Springtime French Green Lentil and Pearl Barley Soup

Makes 4-6 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup french green lentils, uncooked
  • 1/4 cup pearl barley, uncooked (omit or substitute lentils if you’re GF)
  • 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 medium shallot, finely chopped
  • 1 medium leek, finely chopped (white and light green parts only)
  • 2 large garlic cloves, finely sliced
  • 2 small carrots, diced into 1/4″ thick medallions
  • 1 small zucchini, diced
  • 5 cups vegetable stock (I used low sodium)
  • 2 green onions, chopped (dark and light green parts only), plus a bit more for garnish
  • 4-5 leaves of fresh basil, chopped
  • Juice and zest of 1/2 lemon
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method:

1. Place dried lentils and barley in a medium saucepan and cover with water. Cover saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and let cook for 20-30 minutes or until lentils and barley are tender, but still firm. Drain and rinse under cold water. Set aside until needed.

2. In a large saucepan heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add shallots, leeks and carrots and saute until tender.

3. Add in garlic, red pepper flakes and paprika and stir just until garlic is golden brown.

3. Add in cooked lentils, barley and zucchini and stir until everything is combined.

4. Add vegetable stock and bring to a gentle boil.

5. Reduce heat to a simmer and let cook until zucchini is tender (or preferably longer to let flavours develop). Taste and season with salt and pepper.

6. Just before serving, stir in lemon juice, green onions, and basil.

7. Serve, topping each portions with chopped green onions and lemon zest. Eat!

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Portobello and Goat Cheese Penne | With Meyer Lemon and Thyme

While there are few risks that come with living in an RV – apart from the very real threat of the water pipes freezing in the Winter – hauling one’s 30 ft. travel trailer, as we did last weekend, is risky business through and through. I can’t speak to the experience of being in the driver’s seat with the RV attached to the truck’s hitch – that’s my SO’s domain – but even as a passenger I was white-knuckling it the whole way, especially as we drove the Coquihalla Highway – portions of which are so treacherous there’s a frigging reality TV show about it! The sketchy road conditions and 18-wheelers zooming by every few minutes made the trip extra fun… NOT.

Portobello and Goat Cheese Penne | With Meyer Lemon and Thyme

Portobello and Goat Cheese Penne | With Meyer Lemon and Thyme

We arrived in Vancouver without incident – apart from incurring 2 nicks in the windshield from gravel sprayed from the tires of a passing vehicle, and getting honked at once (we may or may not have swerved into the adjacent lane for a second; it was hard to say for sure with ice obscuring the lines on the road). A bit of a shocker awaited me inside the RV upon our arrival, however: when I stepped into the trailer, plates and bowls were EVERYWHERE. Evidently the latch on one of the cupboards failed at some point during the journey – or maybe yours truly someone neglected to ensure the cupboard was firmly shut before we left. Fortunately we’d purchased chip-resistent cups, plates and mugs for use in the RV so the only real casualty was a ceramic plate that also happened to be in the cupboard. It was smashed to bits.

Portobello and Goat Cheese Penne | With Meyer Lemon and Thyme

Portobello and Goat Cheese Penne | With Meyer Lemon and Thyme

I’m pretty excited about this recipe for a couple reasons. First of all, it gave me another opportunity to cook with Meyer lemons. Previously I’d only used them to make lemon meringue pie, and I was interested to find out how their tart-yet-sweet flavour would hold up in a savoury dish. I thought it did a fantastic job of subtly brightening up the flavour of the Portobellos, and along with the goat cheese and thyme formed an amazing triple-threat of flavour. Secondly, my SO has finally overcoming his aversion to mushrooms (thanks in large part to a segment on PBS touting their health benefits) – so I included Portobellos in this recipe with impunity! Their rich, earthy flavour and meaty texture can’t be beat.

Portobello and Goat Cheese Penne | With Meyer Lemon and Thyme

Portobello and Goat Cheese Penne | With Meyer Lemon and Thyme

There must be something in the air or water over here in Western Canada, because my fellow British Columbian blogger, Veggie Bento Love, posted a very similar pasta recipe on her blog over the weekend! Her version uses something I’ve never cooked with or even heard of – quinoa noodles – so head over to her blog and check it out (there are tons of great bento ideas there, too).

Portobello and Goat Cheese Penne | With Meyer Lemon and Thyme

Portobello and Goat Cheese Penne | With Meyer Lemon and Thyme

Recipe: Portobello and Goat Cheese Penne | With Meyer Lemon and Thyme

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups penne pasta (or your choice of gluten free pasta)
  • 2 tablespoons of butter
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil (plus more to serve)
  • 4 cloves of garlic, finely sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (or less if you don’t like spiciness)
  • 2 Portobello mushrooms, diced into 1/2″ cubes
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh thyme, minced
  • Juice and zest of 1 Meyer lemon (or 1 small conventional lemon)
  • 1/4 cup goat cheese
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method:

Prepare penne: Cook penne according to package instructions, or until al dente. Drain and rinse under cold water. Set aside until needed.

Finish pasta: Heat 2 tablespoons of butter and 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over low-medium heat. Add garlic and red pepper flakes and saute just until garlic is fragrant and golden brown. Add diced mushrooms and thyme and season lightly with salt. Cover skillet and let mushrooms reduce, stirring periodically – about 5 minutes. Once mushrooms are tender, fold in cooked pasta, then lemon juice and zest. Crumble goat cheese into skillet and gently fold to combine. Remove from heat.

Serve, topping each portion with a drizzle of olive oil and freshly ground black pepper. Eat!

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Vegan Indian-Spiced Roasted Cauliflower Soup | With Sizzling Oil (Baghar)

After the onslaught of snow last week – and the subsequent ass-whooping I received from the snow shovel – I figured that would surely be the end of it, at least for a while. Being from Vancouver, where snow that sticks to the ground for more than a day is a rarity that garners in-depth headline news coverage, I simply wasn’t able to fathom the possibility of a protracted spell of truly Wintery conditions.
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But as it happens, the cold has continued unabated! It dipped to -15C over the weekend, and while the propane furnace did a bang-up job of keeping the RV toasty warm, we had an issue with a pipe – namely the HOT WATER pipe running to the kitchen and bathroom sinks – which froze at some point between Friday night and Saturday morning. Somehow the hot water pipe in the shower didn’t freeze, which is fortunate as that would have precipitated a major melt down on my part. While I’m willing to rough it to an extent, the complete absence of hot water is way too Little House On The Prairie for my liking.
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It warmed up slightly today – just enough I suppose, as the pipe miraculously unfroze itself this afternoon. Lethally long and pointy icicles have also been crashing haphazardly from the roof of the RV – a not-so-good side effect of the fractionally warmer temperature. With hot water flowing freely for the time being (I’m assuming the pipe will refreeze when presented with the opportunity) I was able to wash the dishes is warm water once more – quite the luxury after forcing my rubber-gloved hands into icy cold water the last few days.
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To distract myself from the pipe crisis I threw together this spicy roasted cauliflower soup on the weekend. After an excellent authentic Indian meal at Poppadom’s in Kelowna a few days earlier, I was inspired to kick things up a notch flavour-wise in the kitchen(ette). Roasted cauliflower provides the perfect starting point for an Indian-inspired soup, and with 8 different spices (in addition to fresh garlic and ginger) I really gave my spice collection a run for its money! Eight might sounds like a lot of spices, but none of them are particularly difficult to find, so if you don’t have them in your pantry already then this is your opportunity 🙂 T0 layer in even more flavour, I finished the soup with a cumin, fennel and red pepper flake sizzling oil, or baghar. The soup is delicious on its own – and vegan to boot – but if you like a lot of heat then definitely give the baghar a go. Serve with a side of warm naan bread or basmati rice.
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Recipe: Indian-Spiced Roasted Cauliflower Soup | With Sizzling Oil (Baghar)
Makes 4-6 servings
Ingredients:
For soup:
  • 1 medium head of cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 cups of vegetable stock
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1/2 large red onion (or 1 small one), diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon brown mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For baghar:

  • 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
  • 2 teaspoons fennel seeds

Method:

Prepare roasted cauliflower: Preheat oven to 400F. Place cauliflower in a single layer in a rectangular pan and toss with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Place in oven for 25 minutes, or until cauliflower is tender and golden brown. Remove from oven and set aside until needed.

Finish soup: In a large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and saute until soft and translucent. Add garlic and ginger and saute just until garlic begins to brown. Add spices and stir until they coat other ingredients. Add cauliflower, vegetable stock and water to the saucepan and bring to a gentle boil. Lower heat and let simmer, partially covered, for 30 minutues (or longer if time allows – as with all soups the longer they simmer the better the flavour!). Using an immersion blender, puree soup until smooth (you can also transfer the soup to a conventional blender to puree). Taste and correct with salt if necessary.

Prepare baghar: Just before you are ready to serve soup, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Add fennel and cumin seeds and stir until fragrant, about one minute. Lower heat and add red pepper flakes, stirring just until incorporated with other ingredients. Remove from heat and transfer to a small ceramic dish (this will ensure spices don’t burn).

Serve soup, topping each portion with a few drops of baghar. Eat!

Whole Wheat Rigatoni with Garlicky Baby Kale and Black Beans

After a marked absence of festivities at the trailer park over Halloween – I think we were the only people who carved pumpkins (and charred the seeds, rendering them inedible) – things are looking more seasonal now that Christmas is imminent. As far as I can tell no one has gone so far as to synchronize their Christmas lights to a Skrillex track, but here and there are unmistakable markers of the season: trees wrapped in lights, an animatronic Santa Claus waving hello from the window of a motor home, a few of those inflatable snowmen here and there, and on the less conventional side of things an illuminated green cactus wearing an illuminated red cowboy hat, planted firmly in a mound of snow in front of a third wheel.

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Despite these blatant indicators that the holiday season is in full swing, it was only three days ago that it really registered that I have presents to buy, baking to do, and meals to plan. With the aid of a bulleted list delineating our plan of attack, my boyfriend and I hit the shops and managed to get all our shopping done in a single day – with the exception of a trip to the liquor store to pick up a bottle of Baby Duck, but that can wait as we won’t be visiting with the recipient of that fine bottle of bubbly until after Christmas.

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Tomorrow I’ll be manically baking truffles and gingerbread cookies and throwing together a vegetarian shepherd’s pie, but I’m feeling pretty confident I’ll be able to get it all done by the December 25th deadline. Like me, you’ve probably had zero time to cook yourself anything approaching a complex dinner this week. Like me, you probably haven’t even wanted to because you’ve been doing a fine job of consuming more than a dinner’s-worth of calories in festive treats munched on throughout the day. This recipe is an example of something I threw together in haste in the midst of my Christmas preparations – a combined attempt to use up the lovely baby kale I’d purchased days earlier and cook something somewhat healthy so as to to erase the memory of that evily-delicious Christmas cake I succeeded in polishing off all by myself over the course of the previous week. I hope ope everyone has a great Christmas, however you’re choosing to celebrate 🙂

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Recipe: Whole Wheat Rigatoni with Garlicky Baby Kale and Black Beans

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups whole wheat rigatoni (or your choice of gluten free pasta)
  • 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 large cloves of garlic, finely sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 2 firmly packed cups of baby kale
  • 1 cup cooked black beans
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 1/4 cup parmesan (or vegan parmesan), grated
  • Handful of flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method:

Makes 2 servings

Prepare pasta: Cook pasta according to package instructions, or until al dente. Drain and rinse under cold water. Set aside until needed.

Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. A garlic and saute just until fragrant and beginning to brown. Add red pepper flakes, cumin and coriander and stir until garlic is coated with spices. Add baby kale and saute just until wilted. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Fold in pasta and black beans. Add lemon juice and lightly toss to combine. Fold in grated parmesan. Remove from heat.

Serve, topping each portion with a small drizzle of olive oil, chopped flat leaf parsley and freshly ground black pepper. Eat!