Broccoli Soba Bowl FTW! (Gf and Vegan)

P1030091_2There are 3 things that make this little lunch bowl fantastic: 1) It’s delicious; 2) It contains delicious things (okay, I guess that’s just reprising number 1, but still); 3) It’s cheap!; and 4) It takes literally 12 minutes to make. Also, broccoli is the best! I know, if you actually read these posts, I say a lot of things are the best, but I really, really, really love broccoli. I’ll stop talking about it soon, but somehow the broccoli, soba, sauce combo really is so satisfying and just light enough that you’re not hungry anymore, but not weighed down after lunch. It’s like magic. P1030086_2What you need (serves 1):

1 serving of soba noodles (I used sweet potato soba, but any soba or vermicelli could work)

1 head of broccoli, rinsed and stem removed

1Tbsp sliced almonds

For the dressing (serves more than 1):

1 clove garlic, chopped

1/2 of a green onion, chopped

1/2 inch of fresh ginger, chopped finely

1 Tbsp grapeseed oil

3 Tbsp rice vinegar

2 tsp tamari

P1030088_2First, start two pots a’boiling, 1 to steam or blanch your broccoli in and 1 for soba. While waiting for water to boil, prepare dressing ingredients.P1030085_2Place all dressing ingredients in a food processor or Magic Bullet (that little thing is truly amazing) and blend together. I didn’t blend until liquid since I still wanted some ginger chunks, but find the texture that makes you happy. When water for broccoli and soba boils, place soba noodles in one pot and cook as according to package instructions. If you have a steamer pot, steam your broccoli for just 2-3 minutes (so it’s still nice and crisp) or place in boiling water and cook until bright green. Don’t overcook your broccoli or suddenly you’ll have green mush, and nobody likes mush of any color. Drain your noodles and broccoli, toss together with almonds, and dress to taste. Eat it up and marvel at how economical, fast, and delicious your lunch just was!P1030090_2P1030089_2

 

 

 

 

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Coconut Curry Soup. MmmMmm Good!

P1030013_2So you, may have noticed that I love coconut. So it probably won’t shock you that I love coconut soup too. It’s March in the PNW, which means cold and damp, and sometimes windy, and today walking home in the sideways rain, nothing in the world sounded better to me than a nice bowl of spicy, coconutty deliciousness.

Hence, I present to you coconut curry soup. And I won’t lie, it’s good. Real good.

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And the best thing about this soup you ask? Well, it’s fast. And the second best thing? It does wonders for a sore throat.  Just sayin’. It tastes a lot better than any medication I’ve tried.

To make it, you need:

1 Tbsp of coconut oil

2 cans of light coconut milk

3 cups of water or veggie broth

1 cup white mushrooms, sliced

1 carrot, diced finely

1 onion, diced

1 red pepper, diced

1 Tbsp tamari (or fish sauce if not going gf or vegan)

3 Tbsp red curry paste (I like mine pretty spicy, so start yours with less if you don’t think the spice is so nice)

1 Tbsp lemon grass

1/8 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

several leaves of basil (save until serving)

2 inces of fresh ginger, diced finely

4 cloves of garlic, diced

salt and pepper (or better yet, grains of paradise) to taste

P1030004In a pot, combine garlic, onion, ginger, and coconut oil. Sauteè over low heat until softened. Add carrot and mushrooms, and continue to sautee until carrots softened and mushrooms browned. Add red curry and lemongrass and cook for 1 more minute

P1020996Add coconut milk, water, red pepper, and cilantro. Bring to boil for 30 seconds, and reduce heat to low. It can definitely be served here, but it’s even tastier if you let it cook for an extra 10 minutes or so.

P1030011_2Pour into bowls, garnish with fresh basil, and drink down the spicy, coconutty, smooth-as-silk goodness! Also, don’t be afraid to add tofu, chicken, or whatever protein of choice is. Rice noodles would also be fantastic!

The World’s Best Green Juice, Ever. In the world! (did I mention the world?)

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I’d like to start by saying one thing: Green juice is MAGIC. Yes, it looks weird (although I like pretty much anything that looks like it may have come straight from a rainbow), and like it might taste really bad. Once you make the leap to the green, you’ll be so glad you did. This juice is a nice start to the morning, an afternoon pick me up, or a good post workout recharger. And it’s an excellent gateway juice before you start getting all hardcore with green juices that don’t have anything ungreen in them. Also, it’s amazing. 🙂

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Makes about 16 0z of wonderful, beautiful juice.

3 small apples (or 1 large, ignore the 5 pictured)

Juice of 1/2 lemon

about 3-4 cups baby kale (or 5-7 leaves grown up kale)

1-2 inches of fresh ginger

1 pear

(optional: handful of parsley)

Juice apples, pear, kale, ginger. Squeeze juice of 1/2 lemon into juice and stir. Drink it up and feel like a juggernaut of rainbow-colored goodness.

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Chickpea, Sweet Potato, and Saffron Soup. Boy howdy.

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I’ve had a little tub of saffron sitting on my spice shelf for far too long. As all the other spices disappear and get replaced, the saffron has the been the proverbial cheese from “The Farmer in the Dell.” It stands alone. 😦 So today I decided that saffron was done standing alone, and came up with this tasty soup. It’s light, but filling, and doesn’t take much fanciness aside from the saffron and some caraway seeds, which I suppose aren’t fancy, but I never used to keep them in my kitchen until recently, so they’re kind of fancy.

Anyway, this soup is very easy, relatively quick, and waaaay delicious with the light flavors of saffron, mint, caraway, and cilantro and a nice tang from some fresh-squeezed lemon juice. Really it’s about spices here, so make sure not to skimp, and add everything if you’ve got it.

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Here’s what you need:

2 Tbsp cilantro (I used dried, but feel free to use fresh if you’ve got it)

1.5 Tbsp caraway seed

2 Tbsp chopped mint

2 Tsp saffron threads

pinch of chili powder

pinch of paprika

1/2 tsp grains of paradise (optional, but so tasty and a really versatile spice)

6 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

2 cups cooked or canned chickpeas (if using dried beans, soak in water overnight, then cook until softened before adding)

6 cups of water

1 large yellow onion

4 regular carrots, chopped

7 cloves of garlic, chopped

1 regular or 2 small sweet potatoes, scrubbed and cubed

juice of 1 lemon

salt and pepper to taste

spinach, washed and saved until just before serving

Mint for garnish

 

First, add olive oil, onions and garlic to a pot along with caraway seeds and cilantro, saute-ing until golden brown and slightly softened. Then add carrots, sweet potato, and mint, cooking over medium-high heat until carrots start to soften.

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Add water, beans, and all remaining spices to pot along with lemon juice. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and simmer for about 20 minutes. Right before serving add spinach and serve when spinach is wilted. Serve, eat, and be happy!

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Dream Team: Roasted Beets, Beans, Greens, and Grapefruit Salad.

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Some days, I spend literally half the day thinking about the salad I’m going to eat for dinner. Well, not half the day, but periodically throughout the day.  This particular salad had been in my head for a few days, and I’ve been waiting for a few spare moments to actually make it happen. Well, today was that day, and I’m so glad it was. Beets, green beans, black rice, pear, white beans, kale, romaine, and sweet, sweet meyer lemons all mixed up with a little goat cheese and walnuts to round it out and dressed with meyer lemon vinagrette….it’s a party in a bowl. And you just can’t beet (pardon the pun) eating food that looks like a rainbow. It’s also surprisingly filling and rich, so it works best as a main dish.

So, you also want to have a rainbow party in a bowl? Fortunately this is VERY easy.

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What you need:

1 large beet, cubed

1.5 cups of cooked white beans or 1 can (garbonzo, navy, canellini, great northern, or butter beans would all work)

2 cups of green beans, chopped into 1 inch segments

1 grapefruit, sliced or chopped

1/2 bosc pear, chopped

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

3 Tbsp goat cheese (omit if doing this vegan-style)

1 cup black rice, cooked

2 cups baby kale

zest and juice of 1 meyer lemon

2-3 cups washed and cut romaine

For the dressing:

juice of 1 meyer lemon

1 Tbsp grapeseed oil

1 tbsp whole grain mustard

1/8 cup chopped red onion

4 Tbsp champagne vinegar

2 Tbsp water

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First, roast them beets! Preheat your oven to 400 degrees, toss the beet in olive oil, salt, and pepper, and the juice of 1 meyer lemon. Spread the beets  on a baking sheet and roast for about 40 minutes, until firm, but cooked through.

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While the beets roast, prepare the black rice. Black rice is not only really, really tasty with a slightly nutty flavor and gorgeous dark purple color, but is higher in antioxidants than other rices. Combine 1 cup rice with 1 and 3/4 cup water in a saucepan, bring to boil, reduce heat, and let simmer for about 30 minutes until done.

Saute the green beans over medium-high heat until they reach a vibrant green color (this is only about 3-4 minutes), but are still nice and crunchy. Remove from heat.

Combine all the vegetables and fruits in a large bowl, toss with the zest and juice of a meyer lemon. Add goat cheese, walnuts, beans, and about 3/4 cup of the black rice .

To make the dressing, combine all ingredients, and blend in a food processor, blender, or magic bullet (that little machine is the best). Dress the salad, toss, salt and pepper to taste, and serve! *Note* The only thing I’d change here, is that I wouldn’t have forgotten to add 1/2 of an avocado! Don’t make my mistake!!!!!

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