Posts

Eloisa’s Jicama & Orange Salad ♥

What a special find, this jicama salad recipe from a reader in Mexico! It's quick to make and easy to keep on hand. Low Carb. Weight Watchers Friendly, Zero Freestyle Points! Not just vegan, Vegan Done Real. Naturally Gluten Free. Whole30 Friendly. And wonderfully refreshing during hot weather!
Nothing like seven years of procrastination before taking proper note of a recipe a reader left in the comments in this recipe for Jicama Slaw. "My family in Mexico loves this recipe," Eloisa wrote. "Children love it. We take it on picnics, in lunch boxes, or as a snack in hot weather."

But we were a few days into our Deep Mexico: Ingredient-Driven Mexican Meal Prep eating and cooking adventure last month so sure enough, we had not one but two jicamas in the fridge, oranges to boot. Eloisa's Salad Time! That's the thing about focus, one of our big lessons from that month-long deep dive into Mexican (and plenty of Mexican-ish) cooking. Good eats, all month long!…

My Favorite New Way to Roast Beets ♥

A new way to roast beets, in a moist, vinegar-y environment, turning out roasted beets that are just slightly pickled. Low Carb. Weight Watchers Freestyle Friendly. Not just vegan, Vegan Done Real. Naturally Gluten Free. Whole30 Friendly.
Oh people, it's almost here! No ... not summer, not vacation. Beet season. And more specifically beet salad season.

Apparently I'm #NotAlone because beet salads pop up on restaurant menus #AllTheTime. (Sorry, let's hope that a good beet salad will cure a bad case of #HashTagFever ...) What's astounding to this connoisseur of beet salads is the chefs' creativity: no two beet salads are alike. What unites all those creative salads is the main ingredient: the beets. And isn't it interesting that the beets themselves are much the same?!

No more. Enter Olio, my favorite restaurant here in St. Louis.

Funny story about Olio's owner, Ben Poremba. I first wrote about him for my column in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch in 2013. A …

Deep Mexico Carrot Soup ♥ with Tomatillo & Lime

Ah soup! Serve this simple colorful carrot soup hot or cold, it's gorgeous. Low Carb. Weight Watchers Friendly. Not just vegan, Vegan Done Real. Naturally Gluten Free. Whole30 Friendly. And ... delicious!
Something to know about me. I'm a recipe-driven cook, always have been, always will be. I admire the cooks who cock their heads, fridge door open, thinking what to make based on what's inside. But that sort of intuitive cooking is just not me. I'll vary a recipe, some times turn it upside down, but almost-almost always, I begin with a plan. Almost always, the written recipe rests right there beside me as I measure, cook and time – all the while recording what I notice, penciling in other ideas, simplifying, etc.

Who else is a recipe cook? And is anyone here, now, what I think of as an "intuitive cook"? (Let's guess: more of the former than the latter, yes? After all, intuitive cooks have less need for recipes and no doubt, in addition to inspirati…

Celery & Chickpea Salad ♥

A captivating salad, a simple lemony mix of crunchy celery (extra points for celery with leaves!) and creamy chickpeas, held together with a touch of feta. Perfect for a light spring lunch or supper but also, garnished with tomato and avocado, makes an impressive platter for a potluck or dish to share. Very spring-y! Weight Watchers Friendly. Naturally Gluten Free.
Short story here. It was the day before Thanksgiving circa mid 2000s. I was up to my elbows in green beans and pie crust but took a break to check email. "Get it RIGHT!" shouted a local reader of Kitchen Parade, then still published in print in my hometown newspaper. "Your last recipe," she wrote, "called for a stalk of celery. Unless you mean the whole damn bunch, it's a celery rib not a celery stalk!" Okay, then. Happy Thanksgiving to you too, ma'am.

But she was right! So I thanked her for the correction and wished her a very happy Thanksgiving. (And also felt a real sadness for he…

What Are Crudites? ♥ Vegetables 101

How to Create a Colorful Instagram-Friendly Platter of Raw Vegetables
All you need to know about vegetable crudités, those simple-to-stunning plates and platters of raw colorful vegetables served everywhere from casual parties to formal receptions but also, in simple form, at family tables. Let's talk vegetable crudités – the meaning of the crudites, what they are, how to pronounce the French word and more. Plus for anyone wondering which vegetables work well for crudites and looking for ideas to present them beautifully? Here I share my very best tips for for choosing, cleaning, cutting and displaying fresh vegetables in Instagram-friendly fashion.

Winter Greens Salad ♥ with Oranges, Avocado, Olives, Feta & Orange-Cumin Vinaigrette

Whew, say THAT three times. Or don't, because by the time you have, today's fresh winter salad could be on the table, just bitter greens (curly endive is pictured) plus juicy oranges, s'more salad fixin's all tossed with a long-time favorite no-oil salad dressing, Orange & Cumin Vinaigrette. Low Carb. Weight Watchers Friendly. Naturally Gluten Free.
I swear, since Christmas, you could count on one hand how often I've cooked vegetables. But vegetable soups? and raw salads? #NoGettingEnough

My raw salads follow no recipe, per se, although there is a formula. Greens of some sort, often arugula. (Any other fans of Trader Joe's arugula?!!) Chopped vegetables, whatever's on hand. (It's winter so think carrot, cabbage, fennel, cauliflower, broccoli, bell pepper, Brussels sprouts, radish, small tomatoes, zucchini, that's just since Christmas.) Parsley or cilantro if they're handy. Green onion, always! Salt, pepper and a splash of good vinegar. Th…

Detox Chopped Salad ♥ Recipe

Today's chopped salad recipe: An addictive combination of finely chopped broccoli, cauliflower (both or one or the other) and dried fruit, nuts and seeds, bound by a citrus dressing. Great for home as a "refrigerator salad" that keeps for a good week or more but also a great salad to take along to potlucks and parties, ensuring at least one plant-based, satisfying choice. Weight Watchers Friendly. Not just vegan, Vegan Done Real. Naturally Gluten Free.
"I bought a food processor," my sister announced back in November. "We really like this salad recipe I tried. It's great! But you really can't chop everything fine enough by hand."

So curious, I was! What super-special salad recipe would rouse such serious kitchen appliance-temptation?! Turns out, it's just broccoli, cauliflower, dried fruit, some nuts and seeds, all chopped finely and tossed in a no-oil citrus dressing.

Since I already owned the all-important food processor, there was n…