vibrant chickpea & herbs salad

Bright green herbs stand in for mixed greens in this filling meal-sized-salad. It’s a great way to include more fresh herbs into your diet, and make use of those random green thingies that show up unannounced in your CSA. Feel free to swap as you like- dill, parsley, mint, basil, Thai basil, cilantro, and sorrel would all be great mixed together in some pretty combination! I made this in cooking class recently, but the recipe comes to us via a coworker, from whom I often ‘borrow’ recipes. Mahalos Cyn!

so green, so lovely

Chickpea & Herbs Salad

¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
salt and pepper to taste
4 cups chickpeas, room temperature
2 cups finely sliced fresh basil
2 cups sliced cucumber
1 cup shredded carrots
1 cup fresh mint, minced
1 cup fresh cilantro, minced
½ cup fresh parsley, minced

  1. In a large bowl whisk together olive oil, lemon juice, vinegar, soy sauce, and salt/pepper. Whisk until emulsified and add chickpeas. Let stand one hour.
  2. In another large bowl toss together remaining ingredients. Add in dressing and chickpeas and toss gently to combine. Serve immediately. Enjoy!

Yields: 4-6 salad servings

cucumber salad with herbs and yogurt

This is a great little salad: super easy, refreshing, and wholesome. Simply slice some cucumbers, toss in a handful of minced onion (if yer not kissing anyone later), and then mix up an easy dressing from plain yogurt, fresh and dried herbs, and lemon zest. I shared this recipe as part of a cooking demonstration and it was well-loved; and because it is pretty green and white, it will present itself well at your next dinner party.

It must be said that this recipe is inspired (not copied, I don’t think!) from Heidi Swanson’s 101 cookbooks blog and her cookbooks.  She uses a lot of creme fraiche and yogurt, and a lot of lemon zest to brighten things up. I’ve adopted using zest in lots of things, and yogurt to a lesser extent. This is also a kinda deconstructed version of raita, that yummy yogurt and herb dipping sauce shared at Indian restaurants. Raita is good on every component of an Indian meal; likewise, this little salad will play well with any other things on your table. Just know, you must keep the dressing and veggies separate until just before serving, otherwise it gets all watery and wacky. Basically, eat it all immediately.

Cucumber Salad with Herbs & Yogurt

4 large cucumbers (I like the Japanese variety, if you can find ’em)
¼ cup minced red onion
¾ cup plain soy or dairy yogurt
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp dried dill (or use 1/4 cup fresh)
¼ cup minced fresh mint
2 tsp lemon zest
pinch black pepper

  1. Peel, de-seed, and chop cucumbers and place in a large bowl.  Mix in onion, and set aside.
  2. In a small bowl whisk together remaining ingredients until well combined.  Pour dressing over cucumber and onion, and toss gently.  Serve immediately; otherwise keep dressing separate until just before serving.

Yield: About 4-6 small servings

notes from the kitchen: zucchini fritters

Tonight I learned that Zucchini Fritters are one of life’s great pleasures. Smitten Kitchen posted this recipe a week ago, and when I found myself with some extra zucchini this afternoon I decided fritters were to be part of our friday night feast. The recipe is super easy, made from a few pantry staples, one egg, and lots of zucchini, which most folks are drowning in this time of year.  Do made sure to follow the directions and squeeze the shredded zucchini to death; I was impatient as ever and they became a bit soft. Definitely make the easy dipping sauce (yogurt, zest, garlic, and dried dill!). There are no photos to document this little project, because it was evening and the light was weird, but also because my fritters looked mostly like the originals… except she has a much cleaner stove.

Find the Zucchini Fritters recipe here on Smitten Kitchen! And if you don’t have zucchini, there are always lots of delicious vegetarian friendly recipes on this gorgeous and inspiring blog. Enjoy!

vegan carrot cake!

More specifically, Coconut Ginger Macadamia Nut Carrot Cake as the happy birthday cake for the farmer!

Happy Birthday to my old man!

This is a recipe that I tried years ago from Vegan with a Vengeance; I didn’t love it then, but when I was thinking about which cake to make for his birthday this one popped into my head. Despite moldy all-purpose flour (which I chucked, of course), despite breaking the cake into three pieces as I was putting it on the cooling racks,  and despite being a wee bit overcooked, it still turned out quite well. Of course I want to share it here, because the end result was beautiful and tasty!

Coconut Ginger Macadamia Nut Carrot Cake with Maple Ginger Frosting

(adapted from VwaV by Isa Chandra Moskowitz; makes one 8×8 cake; a note: check out this quick post if you are going to make this cake! These are some pointers! )

3/4 cup whole wheat pastry flour (see note below)
1/2 cup white spelt flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
pinch sea salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup apple juice
1/4 cup liquid coconut oil
6 tbsp turbinado sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup ground macadamia nuts
1 cup shredded carrots (about 3 carrots, grated on a cheese grater)
2 tsp grated fresh ginger

  1. Preheat the oven to 350degrees. Line a square or round cake pan with parchment paper, and grease the sides with coconut oil.
  2. In a large bowl mix the flours, b. powder, b. soda, salt, spices, and coconut. Stir to combine.
  3. In another larger bowl mix the juice, oil, sugar, maple syrup, and extract. If your apple juice and/or maple syrup are in the fridge, you will have to warm this liquid mixture to keep the coconut oil from solidifying. I simply put my pyrex bowl (oven safe!) in the preheating oven until all the coconut oil was melted and the mixture was blendable).
  4. Pour the dry ingredients into wet, mix for a few strokes, and then add the nuts, carrots, and ginger. Combine gently until just mixed (no dry spots). Pour into your prepared pan and smooth the top.
  5. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center.  Cool on racks (try to not break it!).

don't break the birthday cake!

A note on the flours: As I was making this recipe I realized that my all-purpose flour was a bit sticky and off (which explains why my cookies didn’t turn out well yesterday!).  I made a quick substitution with whole wheat pastry flour, which is always a good substitute for at least half the flour in a recipe.  But I wanted to make sure the cake retained the lightness of the AP flour, so I used a white spelt flour, which is significantly lighter than whole spelt flour; I also just learned that in order to substitute with spelt you should add some extra flour, which is included in the above measurements.  If you opt to use all-purpose, or a combination of AP and WWPF, keep the flour measurements to 1 cup + 3 tbsp only.

Another note: be sure to use parchment and grease the pan. Let it cool completely before removing from the pan, and do so very gently! Also, so choose the turbinado sugar; I tried using coconut sugar for another batch and it did not work out as nicely as the photo!

pretty..... delicious

Maple Ginger Frosting

1/2 cup toasted coconut
1/4 cup toasted shredded carrot
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup earth balance, room temperature
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
2 tsp maple extract
1 tsp grated fresh ginger
1 tsp dried ground ginger

  1. While your oven is preheating for the cake, toast the carrot and coconut.  Simply add to a pan and put in the oven for about 10 minutes, until you can smell the coconut toasting.  Be careful to not let it burn- when it comes out of the oven it will still cook.  Toss with the cinnamon, and let cool on the side.
  2. Whip the EB with a whisk until smooth.  Sift in the powdered sugar, 1/2 cup at a time (very important to sift, or you get clumpy frosting!).  Add in the extracts and ginger, and whip until well combined.  Add a splash of soymilk if the frosting is too dry; alternatively, add more powdered sugar if it is too saucy.
  3. When your cake is cool, frost with a thin layer, then add a thicker layer and spread evenly across the top.  Sprinkle the toasted carrots & coconut on top.  Enjoy!

cooking class: eat your greens!

kale is easily my favorite vegetable,  and anyone who knows me knows that i am a big cheerleader for all leafy greens: kales, collards, mixed greens, even sometimes bitter greens like turnip, radish, and mustard (well ok, not mustards).  i’ve been growing greens for years now (both and home and on farms) and i like to grow them as much as i like to eat them! i have baby collards, red kales, green kales, and chard ready to plant as soon as it stops raining! and last week i wanted to share some of my greens passion in the cooking class.

cooking class was a trio of trios: using three different greens (kales, collards, and swiss chard), three easy cooking methods (blanching, steaming, and sauteing), and three delicious recipes to encourage everyone to eat your greens!

read more here about how healthy kale is: andi nutrient density scale

and for more kale love check out some previous bakerymanis posts:

Sun-Dried Tomato and Swiss Chard Soup

This warming recipe is adapted from Vegetarian Times Healing Recipes Cookbook (2011). This recipe serves eight.

2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp minced garlic
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 medium onion, chopped (1 1/2 cups)
2 medium carrots, sliced (1 cup)
1/2 tsp. chopped fresh rosemary
2 cups vegetable broth or water
2 15-oz. cans diced tomatoes
1 15-oz. can small white beans or cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained and chopped, plus 2 Tbs. oil from jar
1/2 bunch (6 oz.) Swiss chard, ribs removed and chopped
1/2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
1 cup torn fresh basil

  1. Heat oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and red pepper flakes, and cook 1 minute, or until garlic is fragrant. Stir in onion, carrots, and rosemary, and cook 10 to 15 minutes, or until onions are soft.
  2. Add broth, 1 can tomatoes, and beans to the saucepan. Scoop out 1 cup of this mixture and add to the food processor or blender; add the remaining can of tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, and sun-dried tomato oil into the food processor, and purée until smooth.  Stir the puree into the soup, season with salt and pepper, if desired, and simmer 10 more minutes.
  3. Add Swiss chard and thyme; simmer until chard is wilted. Remove pan from heat, and stir in basil.

Sauteed Bitter Greens

Bitter greens include turnip greens, radish greens, mustard greens, collards, and even kale. If you don’t like bitter greens you can use a light kale.

4 cups greens, torn and washed
1 tbsp olive oil or butter
½ cup raisins or currants
½ cup hempseeds

  1. Wash and tear the greens into bite-sized pieces.
  2. Heat up the oil or butter in a skillet until bubbling.  Add greens and stir constantly until bright green and slightly wilted.
  3. Add the raisins and hempseeds and stir to combine.
  4. Remove from heat and serve immediately.

Lemon & Macadamia Nut Kale

The sweetness of the lemon and the saltiness of the shoyu combined with the buttery macadamia nuts creates a kale dish that tastes better than you can imagine.  Be prepared to eat the whole recipe yourself!

1 bunch lacinato kale (about 4 cups), washed and torn
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 tsp soy sauce
¼ cup ground toasted macadamia nuts

  1. Wash and tear the kale into bite-sized pieces; leave the kale to drain in a metal colander.  In a small bowl mix the lemon and soy sauce and set aside.
  2. Heat up two inches of water in saucepan until boiling.  Put the colander directly into the pot, and cover. Steam the kale until bright green and wilted, fluffing with tongs. Remove from heat, and toss to remove any remaining moisture.
  3. Put the steamed kale into a large bowl and toss with the lemon and soy sauce, and then add the ground macadamia nuts.  Toss gently, and serve immediately.