A few years ago two middle-aged friends were driving south in a Ford F-150 truck filled with household items for their casita in Mexico. At the US and Mexican border crossing, the customs officer asked them what they had in the truck so they read off a list of items and then jokingly added, “and some baby bok choy.” That’s all the customs officer had to hear.
The word “baby” to someone trained in trafficking raises a red flag. He demanded they get out of the vehicle and then searched the whole truck looking for who knows what (my friend thought maybe he was looking for a Chinese baby). They realized the customs officer didn’t know what baby bok choy was so they pointed to the cooler that held the baby bok choy and diffused the situation. Read more
One of the things I love about the Purple Carrot (a plant-based meal prep delivery service) is that the recipes inspire me to make something different from the usual fare. But, my favorite thing to do is to take the recipe and figure out how to keep the flavor but reduce or eliminate the oils or fats that don’t come from whole foods, and add more vegetables.
The following recipe is a variation of the Purple Carrot recipe for Mole Enfrijoladas. I eliminated the oils, jalapeño and garlic (but feel free to add these ingredients if you prefer a hotter, spicier meal) and nuts but added mango, sweet Marzano tomatoes, cilantro, pumpkin seeds, and more onion to make a super tasty enfrijolada (a tortilla drenched in pureed black beans) on a bed of spinach with an Avocado Mango Citrus Salad. Read more
Ever since I saw the musical “Waitress,” I can’t stop thinking about pie. I find myself singing the lyrics (pie, pie, pie, me o my, I love pie..) and then, of course, I start thinking about making a fresh pie but one that doesn’t have a lot of added fat or sugar. There are those who claim it’s nearly impossible to make a good pie without butter, shortening, sugar, eggs, and cream but I’m here to tell you, a delicious fruit pie with a flaky crust is totally doable if you follow some advice. Read more
Simple Kneads™ is a Burlington, North Carolina-based company that makes gluten-free artisan bread that is unlike any gluten-free bread you’ve tasted. The loaves are rounder, denser, and have more substance than other gluten-free breads because Simple Kneads™ uses a variety of flours (millet, sorghum, buckwheat, teff, and quinoa) along with whole food ingredients (flax meal, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, raisin juice concentrate, sunflower seeds, expeller pressed sunflower seed oil, brown sesame seeds, salt, and cultured dextrose) to make the artisan loaves. Read more
Kale is one of those greens that I am always struggling to get more of because this dark green leafy nutrient-dense vegetable is just so good for our bodies. So, when I received my box from the Purple Carrot this week, I zeroed in on the recipe for “Cajun Roasted Broccoli Bowls.”
After quickly scanning the recipe (I am never one to follow a recipe), I decided to make a variation (from a bowl to a salad) by eliminating the added oils, the Cajun blackened seasoning and a few other ingredients while adding avocado, pumpkin seeds, and a seasoning called Salad Sprinkle by Frontier Co-op – a blend of sesame seeds, bell pepper, black pepper, lemon peel, green onion, celery flakes, and chervil, but you can use any seasoning (salt, pepper, fresh herbs, chopped parsley). Just make sure to add some type of seasoning to enhance the flavor of the vegetables. Read more
Nothing But The Fruit™ Real Fruit Bites are a new snack option for kids and adults who want something sweet and tangy without added sugar or high fructose corn syrup.
Made of fruit that has been picked, puréed, and pressed into bite-sized pieces, Nothing But The Fruit™ Real Fruit Bites are vegan, gluten-free, and non-GMO. There are no added preservatives, refined sweeteners, waxes, or colors, and yes, the little squares taste great…chewy, sweet, and delicious. Read more
New York is a culinary destination for everyone including the plant-based devotee whose toughest decision may very well be where to eat (this hasn’t always been the case for vegans). There’s fast food (By Chloe, Beyond Sushi, Plantmade, Peacefood, Cinnamon Snail at the Pennsy, Superiority Burger), fancy food (Dovetail, abcV), pizza (Double Zero), really good food (Candle Cafe, Candle 79, Candle West, Dirt Candy, Blossom, Franchia, Bodhi, The Organic Grill, Nix, Avant Garden, Urban Vegan Kitchen, Arata) and then there is Divya’s Kitchen – an East Village restaurant that is technically vegetarian although most of the selections are deliriously delicious plant-based.
Divya’s Kitchen is well-known for its culinary creations, but there is also the ambiance, and a special something for which there isn’t a word – casual and comfortable but also elegant in a Provence type of way – that makes Divya’s Kitchen my favorite place to eat in New York. Read more
Everyone in New York and beyond has an opinion about bagels so I’m just going to put my two cents out there. Tompkins Square Bagels makes the best bagels, period. A great bagel has to be big and round, golden brown and slightly crispy on the outside and doughy on the inside – and that’s what Thompkins Square Bagels are.
With two locations (the original location at 165 Avenue A by Tompkins Square Park and 184 2nd Avenue between 11th and 12th Street) in the East Village, Tompkins Square Bagels is a neighborhood bagel shop but also a destination spot for many New Yorkers who know a good bagel when they taste one. Read more
Rich in Omega 3’s, fiber, and magnesium, organic and fair-trade Himalania chia seeds are grown in Peru. A popular seed used in cereals, chia seeds are also used as an egg replacement because the seeds when moistened expand into a gel-like texture that helps bind and elevate foods together. But beyond using chia seeds as a nutritional boost, leavening agent, or binder for cereals, puddings and baked goods, chia seeds are also a great tasting snack food, especially when they are covered in rich, dark chocolate. Read more
Rainbows are in short supply in the wintertime so instead of looking outside turn to the kitchen for an updated version of the spinach salad. I call this salad a Rainbow Spinach Salad because of the array of colors: red, yellow, light green, orange dark green, and deep purplish black. Although beautiful to look at, the Rainbow Spinach Salad is a feast to savor with only one caveat: you must like fresh beets because there are two types (both yellow and red) and they are a substantial part of this easy-to-make salad. Read more