Broccoli Tahini Pasta Salad

Broccoli Tahini Pasta Salad

This is not your regular pasta salad. In fact, Jack (who is not the biggest fan of pasta salads) said “holy crap, this pasta salad is SO good!” It’s of course heavy on the veggies – it’s packed with broccoli, zucchini, tomatoes, sun dried tomatoes, and other good things. Unlike a lot of pasta salads, it’s light on the mayonnaise – in that it has none. With Memorial Day coming up, I figure you may need a packable pot luck salad that won’t spoil if it sits out for awhile. This one, made with creamy tahini, is just right for that.

Broccoli Tahini Pasta Salad

The key to healthy pasta salad is to go with a high ratio of veggies to pasta. Blanched broccoli, crunchy green beans, and thinly sliced (or spiralized) zucchini add tons of texture and flavor here. The dressing is made with lemon, tahini, olive oil and a bit of dijon mustard. It’s creamy, tangy, and well, lemon-y – just the way I like things to be.

Broccoli Tahini Pasta Salad Broccoli Tahini Pasta Salad

I used gluten free fusilli so this salad is entirely vegan and gluten free. I find that everyone has some sort of dietary restriction these days (raising my hand just a little) so it’s just easier to bring something delicious everyone can enjoy.

Or you just can do what I did – make a big batch of this and eat it for lunch a few days in a row.

Broccoli Tahini Pasta Salad Broccoli Tahini Pasta Salad Broccoli Tahini Pasta Salad

Tart Cherry & Mint Sorbet

Tart Cherry & Mint Sorbet

This is the dessert I’m going to make all summer. With just 5 ingredients, it’s so easy! The best part is that (if you have a decent blender) no ice cream maker is required here. Just blend and freeze. It’s tart, sweet, and so so lovely with the little unexpected hint of mint.

Tart Cherry & Mint Sorbet

Jack and I both love Montmorency tart cherries for many reasons (see all of these recipes that use them). They have some wonderful superfood qualities, they’re known to help soreness after a workout, and they’re a natural source of melatonin which helps regulate sleep. We love them most of all, of course, because they taste good!

Tart Cherry & Mint Sorbet

This recipe is naturally sweetened with maple syrup. Even thought it’s very fruity and refreshing, it’s still a pretty decadent dessert. I love just a little scoop as a treat in the afternoon – or better yet, serve it along with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for dessert – the combination is heavenly.

Tart Cherry & Mint Sorbet

You can serve this straight from the blender where it will be more like the texture of soft serve ice cream. I suggest letting it firm up in the freezer for 2-3 hours or overnight. If you freeze it overnight, let it sit at room temperature for 15 minutes before serving and it will scoop nicely.

Tart Cherry & Mint Sorbet

Avocado & Mango Brown Rice Sushi

Avocado Mango Brown Rice Sushi

We love sushi. We love it so much that we rarely make it at home, well, because Uchi is just down the street. But this is a great kitchen project to do with your significant other when you’re looking for something fun to do. Also this version is much less expensive! The only thing required for “sushi date night” is a bamboo mat and a positive attitude. You need to be in the kind of mood where you can laugh at each other when you get brown rice stuck all over your fingers and when your rolls don’t turn out perfect but they’re delicious anyway.

Here is our version of not-perfect vegetarian sushi.

Avocado Mango Brown Rice Sushi

This is one of my favorite unexpected ingredient combinations, originally inspired by one of the vegan rolls they make at our Whole Foods. Crispy cucumber, sweet mango, and creamy avocado. It’s so simple & so good. I’ve even used it as inspiration before – last year, I made this deconstructed “rice bowl” version. If you’re not into rolling your own sushi, that recipe is for you.

Avocado Mango Brown Rice Sushi

I sliced and diced the ingredients, and off we went to make some maki. You may notice a new (male) pair of hands in the photo below. A few of my rolls weren’t looking so hot so Jack jumped in and saved the day with his unexpected sushi rolling skills while I took to the camera to get the evidence. #teamwork

Avocado Mango Brown Rice Sushi

Berry Superfood Smoothie Bowls

Berry Superfood Smoothie Bowls

This scenario happens often: I get on a smoothie kick and I make the same one again and again and again. Same time, same place, same smoothie. Tell me that this happens to you too?

This berry-spinach combo has been on repeat in my house for awhile now. I love it because it’s easy to keep frozen berries on hand and because the spinach taste is completely hidden. It’s packed with antioxidants and other healthy things and tastes simply amazing. This time I got extra fancy and dressed it up as a smoothie bowl. You could eat this as a healthy breakfast, but we also love it for dessert.

Berry Superfood Smoothie Bowls Berry Superfood Smoothie Bowls

It’s also banana-less! I add a scoop of almond butter for creaminess (and a little protein) which gives it a hint of a PB&J flavor – it’s SO delicious and also husband approved. Which means that I’m pretty sure it would be kid approved too.

For my superfood smoothie bowl toppings, I use coconut flakes, hemp seeds, whole blueberries, and crushed freeze dried strawberries. Freeze dried strawberries are a new-to-me ingredient, but – um, wow – I’m hooked on them. They have such an amazing concentrated strawberry flavor. If you can’t find them, skip ’em, but they’re definitely a fun ingredient to seek out.

Spiralized Daikon “Rice Noodle” Bowl

Spiralized Daikon Noodle Bowl

I’ve made zucchini noodles a whole bunch of times (here and here, to name a few). Zoodles seem to be all the rage, but have you tried “doodles”? Doodles (that’s what I’m calling them) are noodles made out of daikon and they’re awesome. They’ve got a little bit more bite to them than zucchini noodles and I find them to be less watery. I love how they look like rice noodles, yet these noodles are all vegetable.

To go along with the daikon noodles, I made these bowls with cucumber, carrots, radishes, tofu and fresh herbs. These are all bahn mi vegetables, so this is somewhere between a deconstructed bahn mi and a noodle bowl that I get all the time at Elizabeth Street Cafe. With avocado, of course.

Spiralized Daikon Noodle Bowl Spiralized Daikon Noodle Bowl

Serve these bowls with a bright, tangy sauce. This one is made with lime, rice vinegar and tamari – it’s salty in that good fish-sauce-esque way but without fish sauce. I also made a creamy cashew sauce to serve on the side. I know, two sauces sounds like extra work, but I just mixed some of sauce #1 with cashew butter (you could also use peanut butter), and voila – 2 sauces. The first sauce is very light, and the creamy cashew sauce is rich, so they work together nicely.

Spiralized Daikon Noodle Bowl

I’ve tried a few spiralizers and I’m really enjoying the Inspiralizer. It’s sturdier and easier to store than the Paderno. I highly recommended it if you want to get into veggie noodling.

If you can’t find daikon, you can use zucchini noodles. This recipe would also be great with cooked rice vermicelli noodles.