Kumquats!

No peach pavlova thing today. Sorry SMSrs, I did not have the time this week.

I heart kumquats.  They are so cool–from their name to their taste. The lazy person in me loves that you eat them whole and don’t have to peel them. I re-visited Heidi Swanson’s Super Natural Cooking and made the Clemenquat Salad with Walnuts and Parmesan Shavings. It’s a salad of celery, clementines, and yes, kumquats dressed in simple mix of lemon juice and extra-virgin olive oil and topped with toasted walnuts and some parmesan. It’s fresh, sour, sweet, and very easy to make. The hardest part was slicing the celery.

Find the recipe here: Clemenquat Salad with Walnuts and Parmesan Shavings

Shredded Green Beans with Citrus & Chives

A perfect vegan side-dish that shows off your new knife skills is Heidi Swanson’s Shredded Green Beans with Lemon-Lime Zest & Snipped Chives {you can find the recipe HERE} from Super Natural Cooking where the instructions state to slice the green beans 1/8″ on the diagonal {I cut, hence the non-uniform sizes} or use a food processor {also cut short, this post: why see HERE}.

Spring Minestrone with Brown Rice

sping-soup

A perfect soup for this time of the year. As the weather gets warmer and we start wearing less clothes, we start {or continue} eating lighter. And speaking of light, I’ve started going to the farmers’ market every week. In my town, the farmers’ market starts at 6 pm on Thursday nights. I’ve been remiss in attending mostly because it’s been cold and dark. Now that we have changed the clocks back an hour and the sun is staying up, I’ve been going every week.

All the vegetables in this soup were bought at the farmers’ market and were all picked that day and used that night. Isn’t that cool? The recipe comes from Super Natural Cooking, is vegan, and is very easy to make, especially if you already have vegetable stock on hand.  It’s also the cover recipe. :) I added more vegetables and garlic because that’s always a good thing.

Spring Minestrone with Brown Rice

From Super Natural Cooking
  • 2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 3/4 cup of brown basmati rice, rinsed
  • 6 cups of vegetable stock
  • 2 cups sugar snap peas, trimmed and cut in half diagonally
  • 1 bunch of asparagus, trimmed and cut diagonally into 1 inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup of peas
  • Fine grain sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  1. Heat olive oil in large sauce pan over medium-high heat. Add shallots and garlic and sauté until soft, 2 to 3 minutes. Add rice and stir, coating the rice, about a minute. Add the stock and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat,  and simmer for 30 to 40 minutes until just tender.
  2. Add the vegetables and season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat and serve immediately so vegetables stay nice and green.

Serves 4

Millet Fried “Rice”

Millet is a grain seed that you probably know most commonly from bird food. It’s also a nutritious whole grain with loads of B-vitamins that has been becoming more and more popular in whole-grain cooking.
millet
This week I made Millet Fried “Rice” from Super Natural Cooking. This was my first time cooking/eating millet and I loved it. It has a nutty taste, almost earthy but not too earthy. Just the right level of earth.

The stir-fry is made like regular fried rice. The grain is pre-cooked, you cook the egg and tofu cubes, chop the veggies and throw everything together. I’m excited  about using millet in more recipes. everybody loves sandwiches recently posted about using millet in granola which I’m making the next time I need granola.

millet fried rice

You can find the recipe for Millet Fried “Rice” HERE. Enjoy! It’s wonderful.

Otsu

otsu

Soba, a Japanese noodle, is made from buckwheat flour and is a nutritional powerhouse compared to regular pasta. It has twice the amount of protein as rice and has the some of same healthful compounds found in green tea and red wine.

I made Otsu this weekend from  Super Natural Cooking. Soba and tofu are tossed with a ginger-cayenne-sesame dressing. So deliciously full of flavor and spicy {I didn’t even add Sriracha :P }, I think this would be a great potluck dish. It’s almost vegan, except for the honey–which could be substituted with agave or maple syrup or brown rice syrup…

Otsu

From 101 Cookbooks and Super Natural Cooking

Ginger-Sesame Dressing

  • Grated zest of 1 lemon
  • Fresh ginger, cut into a 1-inch cube, peeled, and grated
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 3/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • 3/4 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup unseasoned brown-rice vinegar
  • 1/3 cup shoyu sauce (wheat-free soy sauce)
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 12 ounces dried soba noodles
  • 12 ounces extra-firm nigari tofu
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cucumber, peeled, cut in half lengthwise, seeded, and thinly sliced
  • 1 small handful of cilantro sprigs, for garnish
  • 1/4 cup toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
  1. Make the dressing by combining the zest, ginger, honey, cayenne, and salt in a food processor (or use a hand blender) and process until smooth. Add the lemon juice, rice vinegar, and shoyu, and pulse to combine. With the machine running, drizzle in the oils.
  2. Cook the soba in plenty of rapidly boiling salted water just until tender, then drain and rinse under cold running water.
  3. While the pasta is cooking, drain the tofu, pat it dry, and cut it into rectangles roughly the size of your thumb (½ inch thick and 1 inch long). Cook the tofu in a dry nonstick (or well-seasoned) skillet over medium-high heat for a few minutes, until the pieces are browned on one side. Toss gently once or twice, then continue cooking for another minute or so, until the tofu is firm, golden, and bouncy.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, combine the soba, the ¼ cup cilantro, the green onions, cucumber, and about ⅔ cup of the dressing. Toss until well combined. Add the tofu and toss again gently. Serve on a platter, garnished with the cilantro sprigs and the toasted sesame seeds.

Serves 4-6.