Posts filed under ‘Sides and Snacks’

ABC Cabbage Salad (Vegan)

ABC…easy as 1-2-3…that’s what this salad and dressing is! If you have these three ingredients on hand, you can whip a quick dressing up in less than a minute, and there’s no need for a blender, just a simple whisk (or a fork if you must!).

A for Almond butter (or your favorite nut or seed butter)
B for Braggs liquid aminos (or coconut aminos for Paleo, Whole30 and/or soy-free)
C for Apple Cider Vinegar
ABC cabbage salad1 For the salad itself, choose your favorite chopped greens along with some crunchy cabbage for the base. Toss in your preference of veggies, such a sliced grape tomatoes, diced bell pepper and chopped celery and there you have it! You can top it off with your favorite nuts and/or seeds, diced apple or coconut chips for some extra crunch and flavor.

This dressing is simple but SO good! For a touch of sweetness, either add a drizzle of maple syrup or agave or a spoonful of date paste. If you are looking for a quick lunch or light dinner, this is it! You can substitute the greens for chopped kale or swiss chard and keep it in the fridge for longer since it will hold up as opposed to wilt. ABC cabbage salad 1

Toss this dressing into a cup of cooked quinoa or brown rice to make it more filling or add your favorite protein for a hearty main course. I served this salad with grilled salmon burgers the other night, and it was a lovely combination or smoky, sweet, salty and tart. If you like sweeter dressings, dial down the amount of vinegar you use and use two drizzles of maple or agave. 

ABC Cabbage Salad 
Grain-free, Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Nut-free Option, Vegetarian, Vegan, Sugar-free, Egg-free, Keto-friendly, Paleo-friendly option

Ingredients

For the Dressing:

2 Tbsp almond butter or your favorite nut or seed butter*
2-3 tsp Bragg’s liquid aminos (or coconut aminos or gluten-free tamari)
1 -2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
water to thin, if needed
Optional – for a sweeter dressing, drizzle in a teaspoon or so of agave, honey or maple syrup or date paste to taste. For a lower carb option, add a couple drops of liquid stevia

For the Salad:
1 handful of chopped purple cabbage
2 handfuls of chopped greens
5-6 grape tomatoes, halved or quartered
1/2 cup bell pepper, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1/3 cup alfalfa sprouts
Or whichever salad ingredients you enjoy, this recipe is flexible!

Ideas for crunchy toppings
Diced apple
coconut chips
Chopped nuts or seeds

Makes 1 large salad or 2 smaller salads

Directions

  1. For the dressing: whisk almond butter/nut butter through vinegar in a small bowl until smooth. If it’s too thick, you can thin with a drizzle of water. I like my dressing on the acidic side so feel free to adjust to taste. Feel free to add in a
  2. For the salad: Combine all salad ingredients in a bowl. Toss with salad dressing until combined, if you like a lightly dressed salad drizzle a little at a time (leftover dressing can be saved). Sprinkle with topping options if desired and serve!

*The choice or nut or seed butter will determine the flavor or your dressing. I’ve tried this with peanut butter, sunflower seed butter and cashew butter along with the almond butter. A roasted nut/seed butter has a lovely depth of flavor that adds to the dressing. If you use a salted version, you may want to adjust the Bragg’s/aminos to your taste. If you use sunflower seed butter, it’s not as sweet as the almond/peanut/cashew options so adding a little sweetener will balance out the flavors nicely! This dressing is flexible so adapt it to suite your taste buds and your tummy!

ABC cabbage salad mixed

August 21, 2016 at 12:41 pm Leave a comment

Salted Chocolate Turtle Candy (vegan, SRC)

Chocolate turtle candies take me back to my childhood, and they remind me of my parents and most definitely my Papa. These chocolate caramel goodies are packed with buttery pecans and they transport me to family memories and holidays. They are our family go-to for Christmas stockings and are often included in gifts…and when turtles are in a variety chocolate box, they are the first to be picked.

Vegan turtlesThis version of our family favorite is not only free of refined sugars, it’s dairy-free, vegan, paleo-friendly and dare I say even better than the classic? Gasp! My grandpa would roll over in his grave if he heard me say that. Maybe it’s due to the fact that these candies are packed with healthy ingredients (and a short list at that!), but these homemade treats are the perfect ending to a meal or a fabulous afternoon pick-me-up, and they will make my tummy happy as well!

Vegan turtles pecans

I found this recipe at Anne’s delightful blog, Simple and Savory while browsing her site for this month’s Secret Recipe Club assignment. Anne is “my type of people”, she’s a holistic health coach, and is a huge advocate for making your own food as a key to health. You can find vegan, dairy free, gluten-free, and Paleo and all sorts of recipes on her site! I had a blast searching through her recipes and though I ultimately  chose her Chocolate Turtle Candy, I have tagged many for future experimentation including Anne’s Roasted Vegetables with Cashew Cheese Dip, Hasselback Pork Tenderloin and her Gluten-free Irish Soda Bread.

Vegan turtles no chocFor the turtles, I swapped out Sunbutter (sunflower seed butter) for the peanut butter since that’s what I had on hand, and opted for pecans as my nut choice. I prefer a contrast of bitter and sweet when it comes to chocolate so I used a 90% chocolate bar chopped up and it contrasted beautifully with the sweet dates. Lastly, I sprinkled a little sea salt flakes over the chocolate coating for that extra pow, and goodness these are scrumptious! No doubt that this recipe is a keeper, thanks Anne for the inspiration!

Vegan turtles1Salted Chocolate Turtle Candy (lightly adapted from Simple and Savory)
Gluten-free, Grain-free, Vegan, Dairy-free, Peanut-free, Paleo-friendly, Egg-free, Refined sugar-free, Soy-free, No-bake

Ingredients

3/4 cup walnut or pecan halves
12 medjool dates
1/2 Tbsp nut or seed butter (I used sunflower seed butter)
8 oz dark chocolate, chopped (homemade, or your favorite chocolate bar, or can use unsweetened if you really like the contrast of bitter and sweet with dates)
1/2 Tbsp coconut oil
sea salt flakes

Directions

  1. Place dates in the food processor and process for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes; until they form a ball (you may have to stop and scrap the sides down).
  2. Add the nut/seed butter to dates and process for 30 seconds until combined.
  3.  Remove date mixture from food processor and refrigerate atleast 30 minutes.
  4. Place pecan of walnut halves in a circle (about 3 pieces) on a parchment-lined cookie sheet.
  5. Remove date mixture from the fridge and roll into balls about 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch in diameter and slightly flatten (see photo above). Flatten on top of the nut halves and refrigerate while chocolate is melting.
  6. In a double broiler, heat chocolate and coconut oil over low, stirring until melted.
  7. Remove chocolate from heat and spoon over the date and nut clusters. Sprinkle with sea salt and place back in fridge to harden. Enjoy and devour!!🙂

Vegan turtles biteFor other recipes from this month’s reveal, please click the link below!

August 14, 2016 at 10:00 pm 7 comments

Sunflower Seed and Chia Focaccia (Grain-free, Nut-free)

No matter what style of eating I’d adhere to, some form of bread will be made. I have a soft spot in my heart for all sorts of bread – from a soft, fluffy loaf or a nice crusty dinner roll to a pliable flatbread or pizza crust. Now that my allergy testing revealed that 99% of grains are an issue, it was time to try a grain-free bread recipe that was yeast-free and easy. This grain-free “faux-caccia”  hits the spot. It has a tender but chewy crumb with a bread-like  middle, and I love how you can taste the infusion of coconut oil…so pick the fat/oil that you enjoy the taste of and go with that.

sunflower seed chia focaccia 1

Instead of almond flour, coconut flour or another nut flour, I opted for this sunflower seed meal that I found online so it’s nut-free AND free of flax if that’s something you like to avoid. This sunflower seed meal isn’t overly fine yet I find that added a nice texture; I’m sure you could grind this meal even finer to a “flour” if that’s something you’d like to experiment with. If you don’t have sunflower meal, don’t fret – substitute your favorite nut flour and it’s should work perfectly.

This bread works with a savory flair but I think the addition of your favorite sweetener or dried fruits and sweet spices would complement the nutty flavor of the sunflower seed and chia as well. This bread is keto, paleo and candida-friendly, and it’s packed with healthy fats and fiber making it both satiating and flavorful. You can slice it in half, toast it and add your favorite sandwich fillings, slather it with your favorite spread, or use it to mop-up your favorite sauce in a main-dish. I’ve enjoyed this bread smothered with cashew cheese (recipe to come), fresh basil and smoky slow roasted tomatoes for a spin on a caprese appetizer, mmm. Enjoy! :) 
sunflower seed chia focaccia biteSunflower Seed and Chia Focaccia Bread (inspired by this recipe)
Grain-free, Gluten-free, Keto and Paleo Friendly, Nut-free, Dairy-free, Soy-free, Vegetarian, Candida-friendly, Sugar-free, Low-carb

3 cage-free, organic eggs*
1 tbsp unfiltered raw apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup coconut oil, melted (can use avocado oil or melted butter if you can tolerate dairy)
2 cups sunflower seed meal/flour (your favorite nut or seed meal can be substituted)
1/4 cup ground chia seed meal (can substitute flaxseed meal or more seed/nut flour) 
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking soda

Optional Add-ins/Topping Ideas
fresh or dried rosemary, chopped
caramelized onions
sprinkle of coarse sea salt
ground cinnamon
chopped dried fruits (cranberries, apricots, etc)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 8×8 pan with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a mixing bowl, beat eggs well with vinegar. Add butter or coconut oil and whisk together until well combined.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine sunflower seed meal/ flour, chia seed meal, salt and baking soda. whisk until well combined.
  4. Add flour mixture to egg mixture and mix until smooth (the batter will be really thick).
  5. Spread/press into a prepared baking pan. Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown or toothpick inserted comes out clean. Cool for 15 minutes. Cut into 9 squares.

*You could add another egg if you want a lighter, more springy result but I enjoyed this as a hearty square

Note: This bread might have a green hue after baking but don’t worry it has not gone bad! Sunflower seeds contain chlorogenic acid, an antioxidant that gives the seeds the ability of turning green under certain conditions. When chlorogenic acid mixes with alkaline baking ingredients such as baking soda, it turns green. Chlorogenic acid may also slow the release of glucose into the bloodstream after a meal. This baked focaccia had a slight green hue since I didn’t use cream of tartar to neutralise the effect of the baking soda. To avoid the green effect in recipes that use baking soda and sunflower seeds or butter, add and ingredient to counteract the alkalinity of the dough. For this recipe, add a teaspoon of cream of tartar if you want to avoid the green color. 

sunflower seed chia focaccia

April 29, 2016 at 6:00 am Leave a comment

Black Bean, Winter Squash and Greens Quesadilla (SRC)

Handheld eats are always a win in my book…they are versatile, they are portable and they are so satisfying! Whether it’s a wrap or a sandwich or a taco, you can pack all the food groups into one lovely bite. This veggie-friendly quesadilla is no exception! black bean squash and greens quesadilla 1

I was assigned Terri’s blog Our Good Life for this month’s Secret Recipe Club reveal, and I enjoyed perusing through her posts of recipes to crafts and family . I wound up picking her Acorn, Black Bean and Spinach Quesadilla this month for two reasons: I had my mind set on Mexican food and I couldn’t wait to test out a quesadilla using Against the Grain’s new gluten-free pita bread (which doubles fabulously as a tortilla). Terri’s Radish Leaf Pesto will be perfect to whip up this spring, her Oat Congee with Fried Egg and Scallions definitely peaked my interest, and her Apple Cinnamon Roll Bread Pudding has been bookmarked for the next stormy day when I’m craving comfort food!

Even though Spring is here (or almost here in Montana), I am still enjoying my fair share of sweet potatoes and winter squash. They are a staple in my kitchen and you can always find an uncooked kabocha squash or Japanese sweet potato on the counter ready to be incorporated enemy next recipe experiment! This recipe for a winter squash quesadilla was a huge hit and without a doubt satisfied my hankering for Mexican food!

black bean squash and greens quesadilla

Now this is an ideal flavor combo for me! The creamy texture of the winter squash and the velvety beans complimented the crisp edges on the tortilla and the salty, stringy melted cheese. The sautéed greens added a nice earthy dimension to the dish along with the brightness from the cilantro and fresh squeezed lime juice. I changed up a few things on this recipe based on what I had on hand — I substituted kabocha squash for the acorn squash, I used a gluten-free, grain-free tortilla and I added a bit of cilantro for a bit of brightness. I decided to smash up some of the black beans to help adhere the ingredients together since I stuffed the tortilla with the layers of filling🙂  Mmmmmm!
black bean squash and greens quesadilla close

Black Bean, Squash and Greens Quesadilla (recipe adapted from Our Good Life)
Gluten-free, Grain-free, Dairy-free Option, Vegetarian, Vegan Option, Nut-free, Sugar-free, Soy-free, Egg-free

Ingredients

  • 1 c small dice cooked acorn squash, kabocha squash or butternut squash
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 tsp cumin, ground
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne
  • 1 can organic black beans, rinsed
  • 1 small bunch spinach (or your favorite leafy greens), destemmed and chopped
  • 4 gluten-free flour tortillas (I used grain-free Against the Grain pita bread)
  • 6 oz monterey jack cheese or your favorite dairy-free shredded cheese
  • 2 Tbsp chopped cilantro OR 3 Tbsp chopped greens onions

For serving 

  • lime wedges
  • your favorite salsa and/or guacamole
Instructions
1. Line a cookie sheet with nonstick foil or parchment. Preheat oven to broil.
2. Heat the olive oil and garlic in skillet over medium heat. Add spices and stir for 30 seconds.
3. Add the beans and 3 T water until hot. Mash them with a back of a large spoon if you prefer more a refried bean-ish result, then add chopped spinach or greens. Cook for about one minute, or until spinach wilts.
4. Place the tortillas on the cookie sheet. Place 1/4 c acorn squash, 1/4 of the bean mixture, and cheese. Remove from oven, sprinkle with fresh cilantro and fold over the tortilla to cover the filling.
5. Broil until the top is golden brown, about two minutes. Serve with salsa and/or guacamole and a squeeze of fresh lime.
Serves 4

black bean squash and greens quesadilla 2

For other recipes in this month’s reveal, click the link below!

 

March 27, 2016 at 10:00 pm 7 comments

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