Vegan Cobb Salad with Coconut “Bacon”

Vegan Cobb Salad with Coconut "Bacon"

This salad was once again inspired by my bi-weekly Farmhouse Delivery bushel. What I love most about receiving a box of “surprise” vegetables is that it takes the guesswork out of deciding what’s for dinner. My general CSA strategy is to try to use the lettuces first so I usually start my week with a big salad for dinner.

This salad is an all-veggie version of a cobb salad. It’s packed with fresh summer corn, crispy cucumbers, zucchini and the first of the seasons’ cherry tomatoes. I made a creamy vegan cashew-based “buttermilk-like” dressing and coconut “bacon.” It’s a lot of quotation marks for one meal, but I promise (whether you’re vegan or not) you’re going to love it.

Vegan Cobb Salad with Coconut "Bacon"

I made my salad a full meal by adding baked tofu and avocado, but you can customize this with whatever proteins and cheeses you like.

The coconut “bacon” here is a wonderful thing – just bake unsweetened coconut flakes with tamari, maple syrup and smoked paprika and you get these tasty little crispy salty bacon-like bits. I also have a recipe in the cookbook (page 171) for shiitake bacon, which would also be wonderful here.

Vegan Cobb Salad with Coconut "Bacon"

Store extra dressing for around 5 days. You’ll want to pour this yummy creamy dressing on everything.

Vegan Cobb Salad with Coconut "Bacon"

Homemade Vanilla Hazelnut Milk Latte

Homemade Vanilla Hazelnut Milk Latte

Happy Friday! I have a fun little weekend project for you – take a few extra moments to make your own hazelnut milk! It’s so delicious, I promise it’s worth the effort.

Actually, it requires very little effort, it just takes some planning ahead for the proper amount of soaking and chilling. The result is a delightfully lightly sweet & nutty milk that’s so yummy mixed with espresso or coffee. This time I made lattes with Nespresso’s Solelio & Giornio coffees which are light and medium in roast with red fruity & white floral notes respectively.

These are absolutely perfect for lazy Sunday mornings.

Homemade Vanilla Hazelnut Milk Latte Homemade Vanilla Hazelnut Milk Latte

The hazelnut milk is lightly sweetened with maple syrup and gently spiced with vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg. It’s quick to make – blend your (soaked and rinsed) hazelnuts with filtered water (and the rest of the ingredients), strain the liquid through a nut milk bag, and voila – “milk.” Bottle and chill it overnight for the best flavor.

Homemade Vanilla Hazelnut Milk Latte

Jack and I have this ritual where whenever we stay at a hotel, the first thing we do is look for the Nespresso. We love that the coffee is really high quality and Jack always loves the selection. So we’re really excited to be partnering with them on their “See Mornings in a New Light” campaign. Making coffee and espresso (the same machine does both!) with the VerutoLine Evoluo machine made our weekend coffee ritual feel like we were back on vacation.

Because the days are getting warmer, I poured my coffee over ice before mixing it with the hazelnut milk. (Tip, brew some extra coffee capsules ahead of time and freeze your coffee into ice cubes to retain the full flavor of the coffee)

I also used the Aeroccino4 to make froth (you can make hot or cold froth), which made my Sunday coffee all that much fancier.

Homemade Vanilla Hazelnut Milk Latte

Jack and I usually spend our weekend mornings on the couch. This time, Jack snapped photos while Annie, our crazy little dog (who by the way is not allowed on the couch), told me all about her morning while she tried to get a lick of my coffee.

Homemade Vanilla Hazelnut Milk Latte

One last thing I just found out about that I want to mention is that the coffee capsules are totally recyclable. They have a bunch of ways to do it (you can drop bags off at various stores or UPS locations, click here to search by zip code) and it makes me feel good that they thought of this.

Strawberry Pistachio Crumble

Strawberry Pistachio Crumble

I’ve had a torn page from last month’s Bon Appetit issue sitting on my desk for the last few weeks. Whenever I’d look away from the computer or pace around the room while on the phone (P.S. does anyone else need to walk while they talk?), I’d glance at this pie recipe out of the corner of my eye and think “strawberry pistachio, YES! Why didn’t I think of this combo before?”

This red and green ingredient pairing of pistachios and strawberries is like christmas in July, er… June. This recipe works just as well with walnuts or pecans, but it’s just so pretty with pistachios.

Strawberry Pistachio Crumble Strawberry Pistachio Crumble

While I got the ingredient idea from Bon Appetit’s pie recipe, this recipe is actually a version of a peach & plum crumble that I made last summer. It’s not too unhealthy as far as desserts go and it’s much easier than pie. I use almond flour (that I make myself by blending raw almonds) so that it’s entirely gluten free. It’s also vegan, made with coconut oil instead of butter.

The crumble topping is so nutty and delicious, I also just love it raw on top of cold sliced strawberries. If it’s too hot outside to turn your oven on, make this parfait-style! The crumble will keep in a container stored in the fridge for at least a few days.

Strawberry Pistachio Crumble

Lemon Edamame Avocado Sandwiches

Lemon Edamame Avocado Sandwiches

What’s better than avocado on sliced bread? Avocado in between soft seedy sliced bread… with lemon-edamame filling, sliced cucumbers, tons of sprouts, and pickled onions. This is a green monster of a sandwich.

IMG_2016_05_16_07889-cropped

First let’s talk about this spread and why I was inspired to make it. Jack and I had a Sunday ritual where we ate lunch every week at a place here in Austin called The Steeping Room. I guess you could call it our church because we went every week like clockwork and dutifully ordered the same thing – I got the Lemon Edamame Tea Sandwiches with a cup of Tomato Coconut Bisque (and Jack got a roast beef sandwich, but we don’t need to talk about that…). Ok, we still go there and still order those things, but I finally made a version of the sandwich at home – only I made it a bigger sandwich because I like it so much.

Lemon Edamame Avocado Sandwiches

Now the bread. I often get comments and emails asking what kind of vegan bread I like and where I buy it. Which is why I’m excited to share eureka!® Organic Bread (with whom we’ve partnered on this post) with you today – it’s entirely vegan, certified organic, and made with no high fructose corn syrup, no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives. It’s super soft and SO delicious. Sometimes “healthier” breads can taste like cardboard, but not this one! It comes in many varieties – pictured here is Top Seed®, which is full of flax, sunflower and sesame seeds. The best part is that you don’t have to go to a specialty store to find it – it’s in most regular grocery stores (HEB here in Texas) and Target stores. (here’s a handy zip code locator).

Lemon Edamame Avocado Sandwiches

I should mention that the edamame spread is also great all by itself on toast. There’s no avocado in the spread itself so it’ll last for 4 to 5 days in the fridge. I’ve found it handy for all of those moments during the week when I crave avocado toast but my avocados are either underripe or non-existent. I don’t know why, but creamy green stuff on toast is just delicious!

I hope you love this one as much as I do :)

Lemon Edamame Avocado Sandwiches

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