What To Do With Your Herbs- Part 4-Pesto

Creamy Italian Pesto

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My herbs are growing like crazy that I can barely keep up with them! My tomato plant is massive, yet I haven’t actually gotten a tomato to eat! I have this mama squirrel that has an obsession with my deck/apartment. She has tried on more than one occasion to get inside. I haven’t seen her as much since I got Henley but while at work yesterday, mama squirrel got into the tomato plant and destroyed most of the tomatoes. Revenge I believe :/

At least I have my basil which was growing out of C.O.N.T.R.O.L.!!! So what’s an Italian girl to do??? Make pesto!

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What You Need: 

•4 cups of basil

•1/2-1 cup of olive oil

•1/3 cup of pine nuts

•1/2 cup Parma cheese

•3-4 cloves of garlic

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What To Do:  

•Put all your ingredients in a food processor or blender (food processor works better but I’ve done the wooden spoon trick in the blender many times).

•Blend together until smooth by adding 1/4 cup of olive oil at a time.

•I like to combine my pesto with pasta or over chicken! Xoxo

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What To Do With Your Lettuce- Part 2

What To Do With Your Lettuce- Part 2

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As we continue on with this series, part one was about freezing your herbs with oil (Read the last post if you missed). This time, we are going to talk about all that lettuce I planted.

I am not going to lie, I have never grown lettuce before and had no idea what I was really doing.  I read online how to cut the lettuce so it would continue to grow. How you can achieve this is by cutting the outer leaves and leaving about an inch of the crown.  This will allow your lettuce to keep growing.

But, what if I don’t feel like eating my lettuce right away. What can I do with it so it won’t spoil?

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What You Need:

Lettuce

Bowl

Veggie Cleaner

Paper Towels

Water

 

 

What To Do:

  1. Rinse your lettuce according to your veggie cleaner or if you don’t have one, just rinse your lettuce to get rid of excess dirt.
  2. In the bowl, put a folded piece of paper towel covered in water (the paper towel, not the bowl) on the bottom.
  3. Add the lettuce in the bowl, pile them so they have some room to breathe.
  4. Put a damp piece of paper towel to cover the lettuce.  Make sure you rewet this paper towel once it gets dry.
  5. When you’re ready to eat it, it will be waiting! Just don’t go too many days otherwise your lettuce will not be that great.  I did this overnight and only had to rewet my paper towel once.  The lettuce was still crunchy and fresh tasting.

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It was so nice to have lettuce that I grew.  I know where my food is coming from (my mini garden haha) and I control what I feed my plants.  #nogmo #nopesticide  Bam! I feel like a real adult!

 

Vegan Pasta with Butternut Squash “Cheese”

Vegan Pasta with Butternut Squash “Cheese”

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So this delicious recipe was actually a mistake. I wanted to make cubed butternut squash, roasted in the oven but it was way too hot in my apartment to turn the oven on. So in skillet, I added the butternut squash with vegan butter. The butternut squash did not hold its shape but instead it started to become mushy. I went with it and added in some frozen broccoli. After tossing it in the pasta, it had a very similar texture to macaroni and cheese. So it felt like I was eating mac n cheese but really was eating butternut squash. This recipe is a must try!

 

What You Need:

Cubed, Butternut Squash

1/2 stick of Vegan Butter

Salt

Pepper

1 Tablespoon Dried, Crushed Garlic (can use less but I really enjoy it)

1 Teaspoon Dried Ginger

1/2 cup of Soy Milk

Lentil Pasta (you can use any kind you like)

What To Do:

In a skillet pan, add 1/2 the amount of vegan butter in to melt. Place in butternut squash and season with salt and pepper. Place a cover on top and stir every so often. Add in other seasonings. When the squash gets soft, it will start to fall apart. Continue to mash it until it is completely cooked. Add in 1/2 bag of frozen broccoli and cook until soft. Toss with pasta and serve warm.

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Enjoy xoxo!

Buffalo Cauliflower

Buffalo Cauliflower

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I love anything that is made with buffalo sauce, especially chicken wings. I’ve heard that people have used cauliflower instead of chicken to lighten up the recipe. This recipe is simple to make and equally as delicious!

What You Need:

1 Head of Cauliflower, chopped

Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper to taste

Gluten Free Bread Crumbs

Buffalo Sauce

What To Do:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and drizzle a little bit of olive oil on a cookie sheet. Toss the cauliflower in the oil with salt and pepper. Top with a sprinkle of bread crumbs, (I used about 1/4 of a cup). Cook for about 40-50 minutes, flipping once, until the cauliflower is soft.

In a sauce pan, heat up the buffalo sauce and add the cauliflower in. Mix until all the cauliflower is covered in sauce. I love hot sauce so I used more but start with 1/4 cup and add more until you get the desired taste you want. If the buffalo sauce is too spicy for you, add in some local honey before you add get cauliflower. Enjoy!!

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Creamy Vegan Avocado Basil Gluten Free Pasta

Creamy Vegan Avocado Basil Gluten Free Pasta

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What a mouthful haha but this creamy vegan pasta is amazing! You have just the right amount of healthy fats without all the bad junk. With a hint of lemon and a kick of crushed red pepper, you can’t go wrong.

What You Need: 

2 Ripe Avocados

1/2 cup Fresh Basil Leaves

2 Whole Garlic Cloves, peeled

1/2 lemon, squeezed

1/3 cup Olive Oil

1/3-1/2 cup Unsweetened Coconut Milk

Salt and Pepper to taste

Pinch of Crushed Red Pepper Flakes

Broccoli, florets (2 small heads)

10 Cherry Tomatoes, sliced in half

Gluten Free Pasta

What To Do:

In a pasta pot, boil water and cook gluten free pasta.

In a skillet, add a drizzle of olive oil with the broccoli and season with salt and pepper. Cook until it is soft but still a little crunchy.

In a food processor (or blender), add the avocados, basil, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, coconut milk, and spices. Blend until all the ingredients are smooth and silky.

In the skillet pan, add the broccoli, pasta, and sauce. Heat until all the ingredients are warm and incorporated together. Top with the sliced cherry tomatoes.

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Enjoy xoxo

Tofu Stir Fry

Tofu Stir Fry

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Today’s recipe is all about the wonderful health benefits of Tofu! Tofu is such a versatile ingredient because it takes on the flavors of what it is seasoned with. In the past, I have shared how to make Tofu Croutons (go under Meatless Monday or Vegetables).

 

I love tofu! It is a great source of protein and it contains all eight amino acids. Amino acids are important because 20 percent of our bodies are made of protein. Amino acids carry out important functions in your body. They play a huge part in carrying the transport and storing of nutrients, help repair tissues and muscles, and helps remove excess waste from our metabolism.

 

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What You Need:

Brown Rice (I used Rice in a Bag that I cooked)

Firm Tofu (1/2 package)

Mushrooms (chopped)

Frozen Stir Fry Vegetables (1/2 bag)

1/3 Cup Liquid Aminos

1/4 Cup Rice Vinegar

1/4 Cup + some for cooking Sesame Seed Oil

1 Teaspoon Chopped Dry Garlic

1 Teaspoon Garlic Powder

1/2 Teaspoon Dry Ginger

1/2 Teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper (less if you would like)

Salt and Pepper

Tofu Spice Rub:

1/8 Teaspoon of Garlic Powder, Dry Ginger, Crushed Red Pepper, Salt, and Pepper

What To Do:

After chopping the mushrooms, add them to a sauté pan with a drizzle of sesame seed oil. Add some salt and pepper.

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While the mushrooms are cooking, drain the tofu and wrap in a bunch of paper towels. You want to try to get out as much moisture as possible. Let it sit for at least 10 minutes.

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Unwrap the tofu and carefully slice in chucks. Rub the Tofu with the Spice Rub and let it sit until it is time to add it to the stir-fry.

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When the mushrooms are done cooking, put them in a bowl, and cook the stir-fry vegetables (since they are frozen, you won’t need to add any oil). When they are cooked, transfer them to the plate with the mushrooms.

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Let your sauté pan heat up and add your cooked rice. IT WILL STEAM! Don’t worry. You want the rice to “fry”. Add some salt and pepper to the rice. In the middle of your pan, push the rice to the sides, and add the tofu. Let the tofu start to brown and mix with the rice.

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Add the rest of your vegetables and mix. In a bowl, stir all the liquids and spices together and add to the stir-fry. Let the flavors cook together for a few minutes. Taste the stir-fry and add spices/liquids accordingly to your taste.

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Enjoy xoxo

Italian Style Pasta Salad

Italian Style Pasta Salad

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Happy Labor Day! Hope everyone is having a relaxing and fun weekend!

When you have food allergies or Celiac Disease, going to parties or cookouts can be a scary thing. You’re not sure who made what, if food was cross-contaminated, or if it contains secret allergy additives. Typically when I go to a cookout, I will bring a dish I know that I can eat and I will ask what is being served. If you have a question about something, don’t eat it! It is not worth it! This quick and easy Italian Style Pasta Salad is a great dish to bring anywhere.

What You Need:

Gluten Free Pasta

Orange Pepper, chopped (you can use any color)

Grape Tomatoes, diced

Can of Gluten Free, BPA Olives, sliced

Mozzarella Mini Balls

Fresh Basil, chopped

Italian Seasoning (I used Trader Joes 21 Mix and an Italian Season Grinder)

Olive Oil

Apple Cider Vinegar (I ran out of red wine vinegar)

Liquid Amino Acids

What To Do:

Cook the pasta according to the directions. I slightly over cook the pasta (not so it is a gooey mess) but so that the pasta stays soft. Sometimes with gluten free pasta, the noodles when cold do not stay soft like regular pasta does.

When the pasta is done cooking and cooled, put the pasta in a bowl. Add all veggies and olives. Drizzle the olive oil on top and mix until the pasta is coated. Mix in about 1/8 cup of apple cider vinegar. Remember that this vinegar has a sweeter taste so add 2 teaspoons of liquid amino acids to balance the sweetness. Depending on how seasoned you like your pasta salad; add in seasoning and taste as you go! Add the mozzarella balls and fresh basil. Let the pasta salad sit for about an hour to let all the flavors incorporate.

Don’t be afraid to experiment. I was going to use red wine vinegar but I ran out. I also had run out of balsamic so I used apple cider (clearly I need to go shopping).  Knowing that it is a sweeter vinegar, I had to balance the flavors with something a bit saltier. You can use any mixture of vegetables in your pasta salad and try different combos of spices.  Cooking is fun so don’t be scared to try different things.  If it doesn’t come out the way you wanted it, then you know for next time! Enjoy! xoxo

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