Mango Goji Guacamole

Mango Goji Guacamole / www.loveandlemons.com

Hi everyone, Jack here again. Super Bowl Sunday is right around the corner and you know what that means? Dip! Even though I’m not traditionally in love with avocado, I love the way Jeanine makes guacamole, and plus, nothing says “go team” like go-ji, right? Right?

Now you may be thinking “oh, Jeanine has Jack writing this because he’s a football man or something.” Well, I have to admit, team sports are not my thing. Three things that ARE my thing, and the reasons I’m manning this post, are super bowl parties, food dipped in other food, and goji puns.

This guacamole is as stealthfully healthy as a super bowl snack gets. The goji berries are a bit of a secret weapon here, as they plump up and become really tangy and sweet. The goji berries, mango, and lime really cut through the thickness of the avocado, making everything still feel light. Plus, the goji berries help to turn your super bowl snack into a super bowl super food.

Love those puns.

Mango Goji Guacamole / www.loveandlemons.com

Easy Black Bean & Chickpea Chili

Easy Black Bean & Chickpea Chili / www.loveandlemons.com

I didn’t grow up with deep-rooted Texas chili traditions, so for authenticity’s sake, I’m just going to call this one Hinsdale Chili. What’s Hinsdale chili you ask? It’s the one you get from the Whole Foods Market in Hinsdale, Illinois when it’s 5 degrees outside and you’re on your way to the airport. In that moment (last week), it was everything I wanted and needed – a hot bowl of stewy tomato, black bean & chickpea-y goodness.

I craved it again the next day so I recreated this pretty simple recipe using (mostly) items from my pantry: fire roasted tomatoes, black beans, chickpeas and a few tablespoons of smoky adobo sauce. This is a low-fuss recipe but it’s perfect for those nights when you just want something warm and comforting.

I topped Jack’s bowl with grated cheese and mine with diced avocado. This recipe makes about 4 servings but you could easily double it and freeze some for later.

Easy Black Bean & Chickpea Chili / www.loveandlemons.com

Seared Tofu Banh Mi Sandwiches

Seared Tofu Banh Mi Sandwiches / www.loveandlemons.com

I’ve never had a reason to make banh mi’s at home because some of my favorite places (Lulu B’s and Elizabeth Street) are right down the street. But suddenly daikon started showing up at the farmers market right next to the colorful carrots that I love – and I knew some homemade sandwich pickling was in order. If tofu isn’t your thing, you could go with some other type of meat – but since tofu is my thing, here we go…

Seared Tofu Banh Mi Sandwiches / www.loveandlemons.com Seared Tofu Bahn Mi Sandwiches / @loveandlemons

I made a quick tamari-ginger-lime marinade for the tofu and seared it on each side until golden brown. Then I stuffed it into toasted baguette with mayo (you could use vegan mayo), pickled veggies, cilantro and a good squeeze of sriracha.

This recipe looks a little long but if you make your pickles a day ahead of time, you’re halfway there. This will make extra pickles so feel free to have breakfast banh mi’s (with eggs) the next day like we did. Or just store them in your fridge for salads, or sandwiches later on in the week.

Green Quesadillas

Green Quesadillas / @loveandlemons

In this frigid weather, nothing sounds better to me than soups and sandwiches. But if you’re like me and you keep tortillas on hand more regularly than bread – quesadillas are the perfect little soup or salad accompaniment.

I always love to sneak a few greens into my food but today there’s no hiding it. These green-on-green-on-green quesadillas start with spinach tortillas that I stuffed with cheese, jalapeños, cilantro and sliced collard greens (feel free to sub spinach, kale, or whatever you have on hand)… and pickled shallots for a bright tangy bite.

These are especially good with our Spicy Black Bean Soup.

Green Quesadillas / @loveandlemons

Jalapeño Cauliflower Shells & Cheese

Jalapeño & Roasted Cauliflower Shells & Cheese / @loveandlemons

Hi everyone, Jack here reporting in from the frozen tundra of Chicago. We flew in for a quick weekend over Jeanine’s birthday (happy birthday!!!) and it is just beyond cold. Austin’s apparently snowing today, but still, not much prepares you for walking outside into 9ºF (-13ºC) weather from a nice, warm airport.

This blog is almost always about making meals completely from scratch, but it’s cold times like this that sometimes you just want to pour a box of mac and cheese into a pot and go to town. Well we did that, posted a photo here on Instagram and people went crazy for it. So this barely qualifies as a recipe, but our Instagram has spoken, and who are we to deny the people what they want?

Of course, we had to add some kale to it, jalapeños for some kick, roasted cauliflower, and a little fontina cheese. In case you want to make your own shells and cheese a bit fancier, check out some of our other recipes whose sauces you may want to borrow:

Also, one last time, happy birthday Jeanine. I LOVE YOU!!!