Asparagus Ribbon, Mint & Pea Pesto Toasts

Have you ever tried peeling asparagus into ribbons? Lightly crisp, fresh & delicious, they're just the thing to top these yummy spring-themed toasts.

If you love asparagus, but the people you’re living with don’t, this post is for you. Even if you’re just blasé about asparagus, like I used to be, give it a chance by ribboning it! The thin, raw ribbons tossed with olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper are so fresh and delicious that you’ll completely avoid the unpleasant fibrous, stringy experience that asparagus sometimes causes. You can toss them in salads, put them on pizza… last weekend we ate them on fancy toast because these happened to be the ingredients that I had on hand. To make the ribbons, you…


Easy Pesto Pasta

Learn how to make pesto pasta with this quick & easy recipe! With bright, bold flavor, it's one of our favorite weeknight dinners.

The first snow came early in Chicago this year. It was barely November and we were driving to an appointment. It was snowing, and then all of a sudden it went from “really charming” to “wow it’s really coming down!” We sat in the cold car way too long, wearing way too-light coats, staring at brake lights and a grey sky. I thought – really – what have we done?? I write a blog about vegetables, I’m shooting a book that’s due before May (when the spring farmers markets open) and we’ve moved so far from the sun! We got…


Portobello Mushroom Tacos

Make these portobello mushroom tacos for an easy, flavorful dinner! Creamy vegan jalapeño sauce spices up the tangy, meaty mushroom filling.

These may be portobello mushroom tacos, but secretly, they’re all about the sauce. It’s a vegan riff on ranch dressing made with cashews, roasted jalapeños, and cucumber, and it’s so good that I have a hard time not eating it all with a spoon! However, resisting it long enough to top it onto these mushroom tacos is totally worth the wait. Cool, creamy, spicy, and bright, it perfectly accents the tangy, meaty grilled mushrooms and fresh garnishes in this recipe. The combination is really terrific – if you try these mushroom tacos once, they’ll have a permanent place in your…


Sara’s Strawberry Tabbouleh

A beautiful strawberry tabbouleh recipe adapted from The Sprouted Kitchen Bowl + Spoon by Sara and Hugh Forte. With vegan & gluten-free options, it's great for a picnic.

After I posted my list of favorite spring cookbooks, I could tell that this is the book you’ve all been waiting for – and I’m here to tell you that Sara & Hugh Forte’s new book, Sprouted Kitchen Bowl + Spoon, doesn’t disappoint. The photos are of course gorgeous, and the food… well it makes you want to dig in with a spoon because all of it, like this tabbouleh recipe, looks so incredibly vibrant and delicious! The book has been sitting on my desk for a little while now, among a slew of papers, books, and other messy-desk things – which is how this tabbouleh recipe…


Quinoa Quesadillas

Happy day-after Halloween, who’s ready to cook? No one… That’s what I thought. So before we head to Thanksgiving Town, I thought I’d share another quick and easy (and tasty) meal you can throw together using last night’s leftovers… Just like the picture says – take your leftovers from this salad, add some black beans (maybe a few more spices), and some cheese… fold it into tortillas… then dig in to some pretty hearty & healthy quesadillas. Of course, cook these on your stovetop and not on your marble countertop.


Easy Peanut Noodles

This simple recipe offers two variations for making delicious, easy peanut noodles. These vegan dishes make great weeknight dinners or weekday lunches!

I don’t make peanut noodles nearly enough. I forget how easy it is to make a peanut sauce, and that I usually already have all the ingredients on hand. I’ve made other peanut sauce variations before, but this time I wanted to simplify it down to just the necessary six ingredients. It takes about 5 minutes (tops) to stir it together… then toss it with noodles & veggies. Dinner is done. We rarely have leftovers when I serve peanut noodles for dinner, but when we do, I use the leftover peanut noodles in lettuce wraps for lunch the next day.…


Heirloom Tomato & Avocado Salad

This is the part where I get sad about the inevitable end of summer. Granted, my back-to-school days are long gone, and it’ll be another four months before I’ll have to so much as think about a sweater. The part I’m not ready to let go of is the bright colorful food. My eyes are not ready to adjust to the shade of pumpkin (as much as I love it)… just yet. Lately, I’ve been consuming these gorgeous Whole Foods heirloom tomatoes by the basket-full. They work well in this particular salad because each type is a little bit different. Some…


Slow Roasted Tomato Pasta

Your eyes aren’t tricking you, these are not zucchini noodles. As much as I love non-noodle noodles, some nights just call for a big bowl of pasta. Especially when I have more tomatoes than I know what to do with and a basil plant that is finally flourishing. Slow roasting tomatoes is, well, slow. But it’s entirely hands-off and you really can’t mess it up. I find roasting to be an easy fix for my tomatoes that aren’t so perfect – you know, the ones that are sadly not that sweet. Eight or so hours later, they’re shriveled up little…


Creamy Leek & Almond Pasta

A healthy & light creamy pasta made with almond milk, cremini mushrooms, greens, lemon, basil and sun dried tomatoes. Vegan option.

Meals like this are the reason I love cooking at home. These are the kinds of dishes that my lactose intolerant self can’t order at restaurants. The amount of butter and cream that go into pastas and risottos… I don’t even want to know. I worked on this a few different ways. I was going to make an almond version of cashew cream (similar to this one), but I decided I didn’t want to ask you to break out the blender. At least not this time. The winner was this version where I simmered leeks & mushrooms in almond milk. Such…


Ginger Citrus Soba & Snow Peas

ginger-citrus soba noodles /

I realize I posted soba noodles only a few weeks ago, but I’m back with more. This time, they’re stir fried in a sweet, tangy orange-ginger soy sauce with some crunchy snow peas and edamame. While that one was best served cold, this one is best piping hot. And aside from the tedious task of cleaning the snow peas, this comes together rather quickly.  


Apple Pancake

This thick, custardy baked apple pancake takes me straight back to my childhood. Dust it with powdered sugar for a sweet finishing touch & dig in!

apple pancake //

My sister and I used to beg my mom for things like Fruity Pebbles and Frosted Flakes. She didn’t cave often, but I remember the few times she did… she’d sigh and say, “If I buy this, are you really going to eat it this time?” We’d smile and nod, excited to be taking home the same colorful boxes our friends had. We’d each eat maybe one bowl full. Then up in the pantry it would go… to collect dust and then ultimately get tossed in the next pantry clean-out. The smiling kids on Saturday morning commercials would convince us…

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.