Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal

Spiced Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal19

 

….Pumpkin n spice and all things nice…

 

I thought I’d let you know that I don’t actually come up with recipes specifically for the blog but that I post what I eat. That’s why you may have noticed that I go on a frenzy over a particular ingredient, like cashew nuts or now, pumpkin. I cook, we eat, I always photograph whatever I’m cooking and then, I post if we loved it. As simple as that.

I wouldn’t be able to cook something just for the blog and not be in the mood for it, how would that turn out? Don’t want to think about it….

Now I’m totally in to warm breakfasts, oatmeal in particular. And this one made me so happy I just had to share. It’s like a Fall party in your mouth. Everything is there, the fresh pumpkin puree, the caramelized Pecans, the maple syrup the warm spices, ooohhhhhh seriously.

I could eat this three times a day with no problem whatsoever.  Also, I think a good made oatmeal breakfast made with lots of love can almost be as good as dessert.

Yes, definitely. It’s like dessert for breakfast for me.

 


 

⏰ Prep time : 10 minutes

🍝 Cooking time : 10 minutes,

🍴 Serves 4

 

 

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INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb. frozen or fresh cubed  pumpkin
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups unsweetened almond milk, or soy milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon (Himalayan) salt
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice OR (1/2 teaspoon cinnamon plus 1/4 teaspoon ground  cardamom plus 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves, dash of nutmeg and ginger)
  • 2 cups quick cooking oatmeal (not  instant )
  • 1/2 cup pecan nuts  + 2 tbsp. maple syrup
  • Maple syrup for serving

 

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Spiced Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal5

INSTRUCTIONS: 

 

  1. Put one pound of frozen or fresh pumpkin cubes in a large pot with about ½ cup of water and steam on medium heat for about 8 to 10 minutes or until tender when pierced with a fork.
  2. Drain and let it steam off.
  3. Mash the pumpkin with a hand held blender until smooth. You should have about a cup. Set aside covered to keep warm.
  4. Meanwhile heat a small frying pan over medium heat. Add the pecan nuts and toast them, tossing them about constantly so they don’t burn.
  5. Add the maple syrup and quickly coat all the nuts.
  6. Keep a close eye on the nuts now and remove them from the heat as soon as it has caramelized and turned dark amber. About 1 to 2 minutes tops.
  7. Remove them to a pierce of parchment paper and try to keep each nut separated from the other because they will stick to each other and form clumps, you don’t want that.
  8. Meanwhile in a large saucepan over medium heat bring the water, milk, salt, and pumpkin pie spice to a gentle boil.
  9. Add the oatmeal. Turn the heat down and cook for about 10 minutes. Stir often.
  10. Once the oatmeal is cooked ,  add the pumpkin puree and stir to combine. Serve in bowls drizzled with maple syrup and the  caramelized pecan nuts on top.

 

Enjoy!

 

Myra XO



 

Spiced Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal13

Spiced Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal4

Healthy Salted Caramel Twix Bars

healthy twix bar

healthy twix bar

Happy Fall everyone.

I’m so glad it’s here, how about you? Not that here’s anything wrong with heaps of sunshine, but change is good and as a food blogger I can get pretty excited about any season because of the different produce.  I really love every season, it’s the change that does it for me.

So, I’m pretty excited about these Twix bars too. Man oh man….they’re so good.I have been testing and tweaking the healthy caramel for some time now and I can finally say, this is it!

Also, I call these Twix bars but I have actually made a combo of my favourite naughty bars (twix and snickers) and turned it into this healthy version.

You’re gonna love it, and to think that the caramel is made with dates is just almost unbelievable. Dates are super healthy. So basically you are doing your loved ones a big favour by feeding them these Twix bars.

This is what you want to give your kids in their school lunch boxes or your hubbies.

Dates are a power house of nutrients, and the base of the twix is made with healthy oats, nuts and some healthy syrup.

Going back to the dates;

Some of the most impressive benefits of Medjool dates include their ability to lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure, aid bone strength, protect cognition, boost metabolism, ensure proper hormone production, optimize digestion and help with normal growth and development.

Medjool dates contain magnesium, manganese, copper and calcium, all of which are required to improve bone mineral density in the body. And even if blood tests show that you are not deficient in minerals, this could be because your body is extracting minerals from your bones (I’m not trying to scare you here but just saying it’s something to think about), especially  women are prone to calcium deficiency so adding essential minerals in every snack is an important health decision.

So what are you waiting for? Let’s make some healthy Twix!


 

🔪 Prep time : 15 minutes

⏰ Cooking time : 25 minutes

 🍪 Makes : 16 Twix

INGREDIENTS:

BASE

  • 1 cup cashew nuts, preferably soaked for a few hours
  • 2 cups oats
  • ½ Cup (pea) protein powder
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ¼ cup flax seeds
  • ¼ cup coconut oil melted
  • ¼ cup peanut butter,
  • ½ cup maple syrup or agave syrup or a combo of both (I use 50/50)

CARAMEL

  • 1 cup (heaped, well packed) pitted medjool dates
  • 1/3 tsp. instant coffee granules (for a toasted flavour)
  • A few drops of natural caramel extract
  • A few tablespoons of water

CHOCOLATE TOP

  • ½ cup roughly chopped 80% dark chocolate
  • 2 tsp. coconut oil
  • Flaked sea salt

healthy twix bars

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Pre heat the oven to 350° F / 180° C
  2. Drain the cashew nuts and pat dry.
  3. Place all the dry ingredients in a high powered food processor and process until fine.
  4. Transfer to a bowl.
  5. Place the cashew nuts in the food processor and blend until smooth.
  6. Place the dry ingredients back into the food processor.
  7. Heat the peanut butter, syrup and coconut oil briefly in the microwave until just softened. Add to the rest of the ingredients.
  8. Mix everything well.
  9. Line a square 8” / 20 cm. baking pan with parchment paper
  10. Place all the base ingredients in the baking pan and press down firmly.
  11. Bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until golden on top and firm to the touch.
  12. Remove from the oven and let cool on a rack in the pan.

Meanwhile make the caramel.

  1. Place the dates in a sauce pan with a thick bottom to prevent burning and add the water.
  2. Add the coffee granules
  3. Cook slowly, stirring often to break down the dates completely. Add a little water if necessary.
  4. This can take up to ten minutes depending on the dryness of the dates
  5. Keep stirring until you have a thick paste  (that smells heavenly by the way…)
  6. Add the caramel extract
  7. Let cool completely.

 

healthy twix bar

healthy twix bar

When ready to assemble, spread the date caramel all over the cookie base, evenly.

Place in the refrigerator until firm and cooled.

Melt the chocolate in 20 second intervals in the microwave until melted.

Spread evenly over the caramel and return to the fridge until set.

When you are ready to cut the Twix bars, make sure to immerse a sharp knife in hot water before cutting thru the chocolate or it will break unevenly. Cut into 16 squares.

Sprinkle over some flaked sea salt.

And I’m really wondering how long they will last in your home…..let me know, ok?

 

Enjoy!

Myra XO

 

healthy twix bar

 

…..and remember, sharing is fun! ❤

 

 

Endive Salad with Grilled Peaches, Feta and Boursin Dressing

 

PicMonkeyEndive Salad with Grilled Peaches, Feta and Boursin Dressing.jpg

 

The end of Summer is here. And with that sadly also the end of Peaches and Nectarines.

I have broken the promise I made to myself to make tons of peach recipes this summer, but I didn’t nearly make as many as I had planned originally. I’ve eaten tons of peaches obviously (and very grateful) but not as many recipes as I had hoped for. The summer has passed by so quickly that I’m almost freaking out about the peaches coming to an end.

Note to self: freeze some peaches before they’re all gone!

So before it’s too late here’s one salad that it fun, delicious and crunchy with feta cheese and juicy grilled Peaches. And so simple with just a few ingredients.

Since endive aka chicory can be a little bitter, what better way to compensate that than to add some juicy grilled stone fruit.

And then there’s the Boursin dressing, seriously a joy for life! And one that will go with anything, or even as a dip or over baked potatoes. I could keep going for a while.

Basically this salad covers it all,  savoury,  sweet, bitter, crunchy, acidic, juicy……YUM!


 

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⏰ Prep time: 10 min.

🍲 Cooking time: 10 min

🍴 Serves : 4 as a side

 

FOR THE SALAD:

  • 4 endive spears, gently cleaned
  • 2 large peaches
  • 4 oz. feta, cubed
  • some parsley
  • Boursin dressing
  • chili flakes

 

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INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Cut off the bitter ends from the endive spears, pull off some leafs and leave them whole.
  2. Chop the remaining endive and arrange on a platter.
  3. Heat a griddle pan.
  4. Cut the peaches in half and remove the stone.
  5. Cut into wedges, about 4 to 8, depending on the size of the peach.
  6. I didn’t need to oil my peaches because I have a very good non stick griddle pan, but if you prefer, gently brush the peach wedges with a little olive oil.
  7. Place the wedges on the griddle pan and grill for 4 minutes approximately on each side. Do not turn or touch during cooking because the griddle stripes will mess up, just flip over once and that’s it. I do this with the tip of a knife.
  8. Place the warm peaches on the endive salad.
  9. Scatter over the feta cubes.
  10. Sprinkle over some parsley leaves.
  11. Sprinkle with some chili flakes
  12. Dress with the Boursin dressing just before serving.

 

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INGREDIENTS BOURSIN DRESSING:

  • 1/2 Cup cream cheese at room temperature
  • 1/2 Cup Buttermilk
  • 2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1teaspoon dry mustard
  • 2 teaspoon parsley, chopped
  • 2 teaspoon chives, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dill, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon basil, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon savory, chopped (optional)
  • salt
  • black pepper

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. In a bowl mix cream cheese and buttermilk until smooth.
  2. Peel and grate the garlic on a mandolin or crush. Add to the bowl.
  3. Then add the Worcestershire sauce, dry mustard, lemon juice, honey and herbs and mix with a small spoon.
  4. Add a little milk if it is to thick, you need to be able to pour the dressing.
  5. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Place in the fridge and let the flavours develop.

 

Enjoy!

Myra XO

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……………..and remember to share with friends and family……………….

Apples and Blueberries under a Maple Cashew Crumble

Apples and Blueberries under a Maple Cashew Crumble

Apples and Blueberries under a Maple Cashew Crumble

Is everyone as excited about fall as I am? I was just going thru my winter/fall clothes down in storage and had this overwhelming desire to put on a sweater, wear boots, lite the fire and make soup. But alas, it’s still 20° C / 68° F outside so I’m going to have to wait a bit.

Patiently, until it rains.

Most people would consider me nuts but I’m  a true pluviophile.

I didn’t even know there was a word for rain-lovers until recently.  Who knew.

Either way I couldn’t wait any longer to make something that reminded  me of fall and cozy weather  so I made an Apple Blueberry Crumble.  A healthy one too.

BONUS: No butter and no sugar!!!

So yes, you can have this for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

I’ve used frozen blueberries like I do in all my baking since they hold their shape much better.

For the crumble I’ve used cashew nuts instead of butter and maple syrup instead of sugar. And the result is mind-blowing! I’m never doing it in an other way.

You have to soak the nuts for an hour or two, but if you don’t have time to do that, just add two tablespoons of water to the nuts before blending them, this will help them on their way.

 

Apples and Blueberries under a Maple Cashew Crumble

Apples and Blueberries under a Maple Cashew Crumble

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 Large Apples
  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1 tbsp buckwheat flour or flour of choice
  • 1 tsp. Cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. Stevia or 1 tbsp. Maple syrup
  • 1 cup cashew nuts soaked
  • 2 tbsp. soft coconut butter
  • 2 1/2 cups oats
  • 1/2 tsp. Baking soda
  • A pinch of salt
  • 2 tsp. Vanilla
  • 1/2 cup Maple Syrup

 

Apples and Blueberries under a Maple Cashew Crumble

METHOD:

  1. Pre heat the oven to 160° C / 320° F
  2. Start by soaking the cashew nuts for about 1 to 2 hours.
  3. Put the oats, salt and baking soda in a food processor and pulse until it’s flour.
  4. Remove to a bowl.
  5. Drain and blend the cashew nuts in a food processor with the coconut oil until it’s a paste. Add a little water if necessary.
  6. Add maple syrup and vanilla.
  7. Add the oats back to the food processor and pulse to just mix.
  8. Meanwhile peel the apples, remove the cores and chop them.
  9. Place in a backing dish.
  10. Add the blueberries.
  11. Sprinkle over the flour, cinnamon and stevia.
  12. Toss to mix.
  13. Add maple syrup if using.

 

Apples and Blueberries under a Maple Cashew Crumble

Apples and Blueberries under a Maple Cashew Crumble

 

Take bits of the crumble mix and scatter over the fruit, crumbling the mix between your fingers.

Place the dish in the oven and bake for about 40 minutes or until golden brown on top. Loosely tent with foil if it gets too dark.

Remove from oven and let it rest for 5 to 10 minutes.

Serve with (half ) whipped cream.

Enjoy!

Myra XO

 

Apples and Blueberries under a Maple Cashew Crumble

Apples and Blueberries under a Maple Cashew Crumble

Apples and Blueberries under a Maple Cashew Crumble

 

Apples and Blueberries under a Maple Cashew Crumble

And remember to share 🙂

Unicorn Sushi

Unicorn Sushi

PicMonkey Image (2)

 

Yes, I love Unicorns…. and Rainbows.

I confess I use my teen daughter as an excuse to create Unicorn food when in reality I’m the one who can still dream of actually riding a unicorn. In the sky of course, you know… like a Pegasus Unicorn.

It’s just so pretty. I don’t think I would make it for date night but when it’s girls night…. time for some Unicorn Sushi.

The colors are all natural, and in this recipe I have only used beet powder, and spirulina. But you could also use turmeric, pitaya powder, maca, or even poppy seeds for adorable speckled sushi.

I like to add very finely grated fresh beet so the colors bleed into each other creating more depth. But you can let your imagination run free.

What I do recommend is that you blend the powders with some water first before mixing it in with the sushi rice. Add a few drops of lemon juice for brightness.

 

⏰ cooking time 20 minutes

🍣 prep time 20 minutes

🍽 serves 4

 

 

Unicorn Sushi

Unicorn Sushi

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 Sushi cups Rice
  • 2 tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 2 tbsp. Sugar or 1/2 – 1 tsp. stevia (I use stevia)
  • 2 medium Carrots grated
  • 1 Cucumber
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 small beet grated
  • 2 medium cans of tuna drained,  2 x 5 oz. (120 gr)
  • 4-5 tbsp. Mayonnaise
  • 8 nori sheets
  • 1 tsp. Spirulina
  • 1 tsp. Beet powder

 

Unicorn Sushi

Unicorn Sushi
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METHOD:

  1. Start by cooking the sushi rice according to the package instructions.
  2. Mix the sushi vinegar, sweetener of choice and salt.
  3. If you’re using regular sugar, heat mixture in the microwave to dissolve the sugar
  4. Mix through the cooked warm rice.
  5. Let cool completely.
  6. Divide rice in two and colour each one with the powder blends.
  7. Add more powder depending on how intense you want the color.
  8. Peel the cucumber and cut into long strips, discarding the seeds.
  9. Peel the avocado and cut into strips.
  10. Mix the tuna with the mayonnaise and set aside.
  11. Place a sheet of nori on a bamboo rolling mat.
  12. Place a few tablespoons of blue rice in a strip over the nori sheet and then a strip of pink rice.
  13. Place the filling of choice over the length of the strips.
  14. Roll up tight.
  15. Place the finished rolls on a plate covered with cling film until ready to use.
  16. When ready to serve, cut the sushi rolls into slices with a very sharp knife and place on a platter or board.
  17. Serve with wasabi and soy sauce.

 

Unicorn Sushi

…and remember sharing is cool!

Smokey Black Bean and Sweet potato Tacos with Onion Garlic Lime Crema.

 

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To make the monday less of a drag I’ve decided to make it  Taco Monday!

I think we can all agree that Tacos can turn any dreary day into a fun day in a split second. Olé to that!

It will most certainly ease us into the week gently and give us something great to look forward to when we come home from work. You could actually do all the prep work the day before on Sunday and make dinner time a breeze. Soaking the beans is what takes the longest, because the actual recipe is pretty simple, we want simple on mondays, am I right? If it’s to much hassle for you to soak the beans and cook, just use two cans instead.

Either way, this is some seriously good food to start off the very first day of the week.

And who am I kidding really, we love Taco’s around here and we’ll have them more than once a week without a problem, different flavours and textures of course, and now that I think about it, it’s probably (one of ) our favourite food.

So these are different, I have addded Sweet Potato. and I can only tell you that I kept on asking myself why I hadn’t thought of this before. The sweet potato is just sooooo good with the smokey beans, I mean KA-POOOW!!

And so much better than plain beef tacos. That I know for sure.

But I promise the sweetness from the sweet potato is so amazing with the spicy smokey beans that even meat lovers won’t complain, I promise. It’s like soooo amazing (teen voice, rolling eyes)

 

⏰ Prep time: 15 min.

🍲 Cooking time: 15 min. plus cooking beans

🍴 Serves : 4


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INGREDIENTS:

Smokey Black Sweet potato Tacos

  • 1 lb. dried black beans or adzuki beans
  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1 inch chunks
  • 2-3 cloves garlic minced or grated
  • 2 onions
  • 2 tbsp. Taco seasoning
  • 2 tsp. liquid smoke
  • 2 tsp. cocoa
  • 1 tsp. hot sauce (optional for heat lovers)
  • 1 12 oz. can passata
  • 1/3 cup fresh cilantro chopped
  • 3 green onions chopped
  • Himalayan salt and pepper to taste

Onion Garlic Lime Crema

  • 1/2 cup (vegan) cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup (vegan) sour cream
  • 2 tsp garlic powder*
  • 1 tbsp. onion powder*
  • 1 lime juiced
  • salt and pepper taste
  • maybe 1-2 tablespoons of milk or water

To serve:

  • 12 corn tacos warmed
  • Shredded Iceberg lettuce,
  • avocado slices
  • Grated cheese
  • salsa of choice or check out  this one.
  • more chopped cilantro

* I’m using dried onion and garlic powder on purpose, do not sub for fresh garlic because it will not get the right consistency and flavour. The dried powder will emulsify the crema in a way that cannot be achieved with the fresh counterparts.

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INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Prepare the beans. Rinse and check beans for any dirt etc. Soak your beans over night.discard the soaking liquid after soaking.
  2. Add beans to a large pot with about 5 cups of water.  Bring the beans to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook until the beans are soft, but not quite done. About 45 to 60 minutes. Keep checking, not all beans cook the same. Drain.
  3. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add olive oil. Add onion and sweet potatoes and stir. Fry for a couple of minutes and add the garlic, stir.
  4. Cover and cook for 10 minutes, until sweet potatoes are just beginning to softened.
  5. While the sweet potatoes are cooking make the  crema.
  6. Place all the ingredients for the Onion Garlic Lime Crema in a bowl and mix thoroughly. Add a little water or milk to thin if you like. It will get thicker and thicker as you let it stand.
  7. Now add the remaing ingredients to the sweet potatoes  except the cilantro and spring onions.
  8. Cover and cook another 10 minutes. Add a little water if it becomes to dry.
  9. Just before serving add the cilantro and spring onions
  10. To assemble, place generous spoonfuls of the sweet potato + bean mixture on top of a bed of Iceberg lettuce in a warm taco. Top with the onion garlic lime crema and avocado, and some cheese or any other topping of choice.

 

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Greek Tempeh Bbq Gyros with shoestring sweet potato oven fries

Tempeh Bbq Gyros PicMonkey Image

Μπουκιά και συγχώριο

(Boukia kai syghorio) “One bite and all is forgiven.”

My never ending love for Greece and Greek food goes on and on…..

I’m not sure if this is actually totally Greek but the basics are there and I’ve added my own Bbq twist to it.

Since I’m looking for new ways to enjoy delicious, nutritionally balanced plant-based meals, and when you love Greek food as much as I do, you have to turn up your creativity dial a notch or two. So I was Wondering if I could pull of a tempeh Gyros and if it would actually be as a good as the real deal. Can I really make a meat-free gyro that tastes as good as the original? Well I’m glad to report, yes I can and so can you!

The Gyros texture and flavor were spot on!

Here’s how it’s done… Tempeh is my go-to staple whenever I’m craving a meat dish. Not only is it high in protein, but its texture is beefy and easily adaptable to many flavors and seasonings. Especially when marinated. In my opinion it is what resembles meat the most when it comes to texture.
If you have the time,  make the marinade a day in advance so it really penetrates the tempeh.

 

🔪  prep time : 10 minutes

⏰  cooking time : 10 minutes

😋   serves : 4


INGREDIENTS:

  • 8 oz tempeh (package in block form)
  • 1 ½ tsp. fresh crushed garlic
  • 2 tsp. greek oregano
  • 2 tsp. dried thyme
  • juice of one small lemon
  • 1 tbsp. soy sauce
  • ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. himalayan salt
  • 1/4 C. plain tomato sauce
  • 1 tsp. liquid smoke
  • a pinch of cinnamon
  • a pinch of ground clove (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp dried crushed chili flakes
  • 1 tsp. maple syrup

To serve:
whole grain or gluten free pita bread
lettuce
chopped cucumber
2 fresh tomatoes sliced
½ red onion thinly sliced
tzatziki or soy yoghurt to serve
sweet potato oven fries with Greek oregano (see recipe)

Tempeh Bbq Gyros15

Tempeh Bbq Gyros4

Tempeh Bbq Gyros5

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Make marinade by mixing the ingredients in a deep dish.
  2. Cut tempeh block in half. Bring a pot of water to a boil, place tempeh halves inside and boil gently for 5 minutes. This removes any bitter taste from the tempeh.
  3. Take tempeh out of the water, and after it has cooled slice it into ¼ inch slices or strips.
  4. Place slices in the marinade.
  5. Marinate overnight; mix up the tempeh slices every once in a while to make sure you have all of them covered with marinade.
  6. Preheat a large frying pan over high heat. add a tablespoon of olive oil. Remove tempeh slices from the marinade and place in the pan.
  7. Stir fry for 7 – 10 minutes or until golden brown and beginning to crisp at the edges.
  8. Once tempeh is done, warm the pita bread in the oven for 3-5 minutes. Assemble gyros by placing tempeh slices, fresh tomatoes, and red onions on pita bread. Cover with Tzatziki or yoghurt and top with a handful of the crispy shoe-string sweet potato fries.

For the shoe-string sweet potato fries:

Pre heat oven to 200 C / 400 F
Take two large sweet potatoes and peel them.
Cut into thin shoestrings. Dry well on kitchen paper.
Place in a bowl, toss in a two teaspoons of olive oil and add salt, pepper, sweet paprika and oregano tot taste.
Toss to coat.
Line an oven tray with parchment paper.
Spread out the fries and place in the middle of the oven.
Bake for about 20 to 30 minutes until golden and crispy, depending on the thickness of the fries.

 

καλή όρεξη!

(kali orexi)

MYRA XO

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….and remember to share, your friends will love it too ❤

Chinese Spring Rolls with three dipping sauces

Chinese Spring Rolls PicMonkey Image

春捲

chūn juǎn

 

Spring rolls bring back memories of Dim Sum houses in Hong Kong with delicious dipping sauces. Filled with tons of fresh vegetables and a little pork, chicken, shrimp or tofu.

I’ve been to Hong Kong several times and loved it very much, such a buzzing city. And the food!!! Everything seems to evolve around food, so a great opportunity to taste as many different things as I could, and although I did skip the fried Grasshoppers, I indulged in tons of Dim Sum and lots of Spring Rolls.

You can get Spring Rolls everywhere here in Holland but they tend to be the big collosal brick sized ones, just not right or authentic in my opinion. I prefer the little chinese spring rolls so I started making my own years ago and at least I know what’s inside them.

These are great as a party food or also as a finger food for movie night. We have them for dinner accompanied with some cucumber sticks or salad. Either way they’re delicious and a real crowd pleaser. And really not as difficult as they may seem.

The vegetables are adjustable to whatever you may have lying around in your fridge or whatever is in season,  add any of the following,  the total should come up to one pound of vegetables approximately for this recipe. At least 4 or 5 different kinds is best. The ones marked with an asterix are the vegetables I have used in my Spring Rolls.

carrots*, shredded or cut into sticks

bamboo shoots

shiitake (soaked and stem removed)

chestnut mushrooms*

cabbage, shredded*

paksoy*

sugar snap peas*,

green beans

finely sliced red bell pepper

onions*,

beans sprouts*,

peanuts,

basil,

cilantro*,

 


 

🍜 Prep time : 30 minutes

⏰ Cooking time: 15 minutes

😋 Makes : 10 medium or 20 small


INGREDIENTS SPRING ROLLS:

4 oz. rice noodles soaked

1 tbsp. vegetable oil for frying, divided

1 lb. mixed vegetables

1 tsp. grated ginger

2 cloves garlic, sliced

1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine or dry white wine

2 tbsp. soy sauce

1 tbsp. Ketjap Manis

1 tsp. Sambal Oelek or more

1 teaspoon sesame oil

black pepper, to taste

2 tsp. Boemboe Sate (seasoning) see Chicken Saté 

 

For the meat or tofu:

  • 8 ounces ground pork/chicken or scrambled tofu
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon Shaoxing wine or white wine
  • 1 tbsp. black bean sauce
  • ¼ teaspoon white pepper

For wrapping:

1 package 8″ square spring roll wrappers 

  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch, dissolved in 1 tablespoon water for sealing the spring rolls
  • Canola, peanut or vegetable oil, for frying

DIPPING SAUCES; 

Sate Sauce:

Sticky Red Chili Sauce:

  • 1 tbsp. Lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp. honey or agave if vegan
  • 1 tbsp. sambal oelek
  • 4 tbsp. Ketchup
  • 1 tsp. sesame oil

Mix all the ingredients in a bowl.

Garlic Lime Cashew Sauce:

  • 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked in boiling water for one hour, drained
  • 1/4 cup water or more
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice, or to taste
  • 1 tbsp. aple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp. maple syrup
  • 1 heaping teaspoon tahini
  • 1 small garlic clove
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • salt and pepper, or to taste

Mix in a high speed blender until smooth.

INSTRUCTIONS SPRING ROLLS:

  1. Place the noodles in a large bowl, cover with boiling water and leave for 2 minutes. Drain, rinse under cold water, then set aside.
  2. Heat a large frying pan or wok, add half the oil.
  3. When hot, add the meat or tofu to the pan and fry for a few minutes, adding the seasoning after the first minute, cook until cooked thru. Transfer to a large bowl.
  4. Put the pan back on the heat and add the remaining oil.
  5. Add the vegetables when hot and stir fry for 5 minutes approximately. After the first minute of cooking you add the spice mix and the remaining ingredients. Tossing to coat everything.
  6. Place into the bowl with the rice noodles.
  7. Toss everything together.
  8. In a small bowl, blend the cornflour and 2 tablespoons of cold water.
  9. Next, lay two spring-roll wrapper, smooth-side down, on a clean surface as a diamond shape, with one corner pointing down towards you.
  10. Spoon 3 tablespoons of the filling on the bottom corner of the double wrapper. Brush each corner with the cornflour mixture, then start rolling up from the bottom. When the filling is covered, pull the corners in from each side (to seal the ends as you go). Continue rolling until the filling is tightly covered, then press to seal the top corner.
  11. Lay the finished rolls on a large plate that has been oiled lightly and cover with a damp tea towel. Continue until you’ve filled all the wrappers.
  12. Heat the  oil in a large wok or saucepan over a medium heat.
  13. Carefully lower the spring rolls into the oil and deep-fry for 2–3 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper.
  14. Serve with the dipping sauces.

Enjoy!

Myra XO

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……..and remember, sharing is fun!

Grilled Spring Zucchini with Peas, Lemon and Feta.

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This has to be the ultimate summer salad. I’ve completely fallen in love with this dish and I have eaten it at least 6 times in the past few weeks. I  make double for lunch the next day every single time because I just can’t resist. The combo is just…..I mean, garlic, lemon zest, feta, grilled zucchini and then the sweet peas.

And I know it’s not summer yet but with 31° (88° F) outside, I think we can call it summer, after all it’s just a technicality.

You can prepare the Grilled Zucchini Salad with Peas, Lemon and Feta ahead of time and bring it back to room temperature before serving or,  serve it warm or cold. It all works. It’s super simple to make and the flavours are simple irresistible. This would be amazing for your next Bbq too. Grilling the Zucchini on an open fire will enhance the flavours and make this dish even more amazing. Your friends and family are going to love it!

Grilled Spring Zucchini with Peas and Feta2

Gluten free √

Vegetarian √


Serves 4 as a side or 2 as a main dish.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 Zucchini
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 4 oz. Feta in one piece or little Feta balls
  • zest and juice of half an organic lemon
  • 2 garlic clove, peeled and grated
  • a small handful fresh mint
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • salt and pepper

 

METHOD:

  1. Wash the zucchini and trim the ends. Cut lengthwise into 1/2 cm or 1/4″ slices.
  2. Heat a griddle pan and when hot, cook the zucchini for about three minutes on each side. Only turn them once so you get beautiful “grilling stripes”.
  3. Remove from the heat and cut the slices in half, place them on  a serving plate.
  4. Boil some water in a large pan and blanch the peas for about five minutes until just tender.
  5. Remove from the heat, drain and refresh under cold water.
  6. Sprinkle them over the zucchini.
  7. Heat the olive oil in  small pan over medium low heat and cook the garlic very gently for a minute or so until just fragrant.
  8. Pour over the veggies and let it cool down a bit.
  9. Next grate the lemon over the salad and then squeeze out the juice of half a lemon over it too.
  10. Season with salt and pepper.
  11. Sprinkle over the feta and the mint leaves tearing them up a bit and leaving some leafs whole.
  12. Serve as a side or as a main course.

Enjoy!

Myra XO

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Beet Falafel Quinoa Salad Bowl with Cashew Lime dressing.

This baked beet falafel quinoa bowl with Cashew Lime sauce  is a very satisfying balanced and filling meal in just one dish. You can double the falafel recipe and freeze them for another day and just pop them in the oven until heated thru and crispy.

Beet falafel are a great twist on the traditional falafel with an earthy flavour from the beets and a fantastic colour. A great taste with an extra dose of vegetables.

They’re baked rather than fried for a healthier and oil-free recipe and served on a bed of quinoa and a mix of delicious greens and veggies. 

I actually always bake my falafel to keep them healthy but if you prefer to fry them that’s fine too. 

Vegan 

Vegetarian

Dairy free

Ref. sugar free

Egg free


 

Serves: 4

INGREDIENTS:

 Falafel:

  • ½ cup dry chickpeas, soaked overnight then drained
  • 1 large raw beet, peeled and coarsely grated (about 1 ½ cup)
  • Half a medium onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped, divided
  • 2 tsp.  ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoons coriander
  • a pinch of cinnamon
  • 1 ½ tablespoons flour (or more)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
  • Black pepper

Dressing:

  • ½ cup raw cashews, soaked overnight or in hot water for 15 minutes, drained the next day
  • ½ cup unsweetened plant milk
  • 1 1/2 – 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled
  • a few drops hot sauce
  • Salt and pepper

Salad:

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1 cucumber, sliced
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 4 radishes, sliced
  • A small bag of mixed salad greens
  • 25 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • carrot ribbons
  • red bell pepper slices
  • some toasted pine nuts

INSTRUCTIONS

Pulse the chickpeas, beet, onion, garlic, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, flour, salt and pepper in a food processor until you have a rough, coarse meal that’s not quite a paste. Place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare the sauce by blending the cashews, milk, lime juice, hot sauce, garlic, pepper and sea salt until creamy. Put in the fridge to thicken and allow the flavours to blend.

Prepare the quinoa according to the package directions.

Preheat the oven to 200°C / 400°F and line a baking pan with parchment paper or foil.

Form the falafel into balls, squeezing to see if they stick together.  If they’re not sticking together,  add more flour, a tablespoon at a time, until they hold together. Shape in to balls and place on the lined baking sheet. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the balls are crispy and browned on the outside.

Make the bowls by dividing the quinoa between four bowls and topping with the vegetables and beet falafel. Serve the sauce on the side to drizzle over.

Enjoy!

Myra. XO 

If you try this recipe let me know! Leave a comment below and don’t forget to snap a pic and tag it #thecookingspoonblog on instagram! You’ll make my day. ♥