Browsing Tag

vegan

Comida Latina, Condiments and Salsas, Dairy Free, Recipes, Salads, Side Dishes

Beet and Persimmon Salad with Candied Peanuts and Smoked Paprika-Orange Dressing

January 10, 2018
A colorful winter beet and persimmon salad bursting with all the flavors of the season; citrus in the dressing, smoky paprika, and spicy maple candied peanuts for texture and crunch. Vegan and gluten-free!

Salads are clearly a January staple but that certainly doesn’t mean they need to be boring, they don’t even have to include lettuce as far as I’m concerned. In fact, a winter salad should be just as hearty as any other dish you crave this time of year.

This particular (non lettucey combination) is a take off of Pati Jinich’s Ensalada de Navidad or Christmas Salad. Pati uses jicama, thick slices of orange, and beets and I love that combination but I’m also particularly fond of persimmons and just don’t think they get the love they deserve, not to mention, beets and persimmons are an irresistible match.

A colorful winter beet and persimmon salad bursting with all the flavors of the season; citrus in the dressing, smoky paprika, and spicy maple candied peanuts for texture and crunch. Vegan and gluten-free!

The orange component appears in a smoky-sweet dressing made from fresh squeezed orange juice, smoked paprika, scallions, and garlic. This dressing should not be reserved simply for this salad but is amazing over warm grains, pan-seared steak, and of course lettuce, if that’s your jam.

Now the pièce de résistance that totally makes this salad are the spicy, maple-coated peanuts that sound lavish but are really nothing more than a go around in the oven. I have a soft spot for Runamok Smoked Maple Syrup which is absolutely divine on these peanuts and goes beautifully with the smoky flavors of the dressing. That being said, I’ve also made them with regular ‘ol Grade A maple syrup and they are still delicious!

A colorful winter beet and persimmon salad bursting with all the flavors of the season; citrus in the dressing, smoky paprika, and spicy maple candied peanuts for texture and crunch. Vegan and gluten-free!

Beet and Persimmon Salad with Candied Peanuts and Smoked Paprika-Orange Dressing
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
A colorful winter beet and persimmon salad bursting with all the flavors of the season; citrus in the dressing, smoky paprika, and spicy maple candied peanuts for texture and crunch. Vegan and gluten-free!
Author:
Serves: 6-8
Ingredients
For the salad:
  • 2 pounds beets
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 pound Fuyu persimmons
  • 1 cup baby arugula
For the candied peanuts:
  • ⅔ cup raw peanuts
  • ⅓ cup smoked maple syrup or pure maple syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon ground arbol chile powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
For the dressing:
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 3 scallions, trimmed and chopped
  • 2 oranges
  • 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
Instructions
For the salad:
  1. Heat oven to 375°F. Scrub beets and dry them. Place in a baking dish, rub with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Cover with foil and roast until a knife easily goes through, about 30 minutes. Remove, let cool, then peel and slice into ½-inch thick slices.
  2. Meanwhile make the peanuts. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and toss peanuts, syrup, chile powder, and salt together on the baking sheet until well combined. Bake peanuts in the oven with the beets 15-20 minutes, stirring a few times. Let cool then break into pieces.
  3. To make the dressing combine garlic, scallions, the zest of 1 orange and the juice of both oranges, with remaining dressing ingredients in a blender. Blend until smooth. Taste and add more salt or vinegar if needed.
  4. To serve, slice the persimmons into ½-inch thick slices then arrange the beet and persimmon slices on a platter. Spoon dressing over the top, sprinkle with nuts and arugula and serve.

Photos by David Mendoza III

A Vegetarian Winter Menu

Beet and Persimmon Salad with Candied Peanuts and Smoked Paprika-Orange Dressing

Roasted Squash and Kale Quesadillas

Blood Orange Tart with Vanilla Mascarpone

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One More Thing

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

Comida Latina, Dairy Free, Mains, Recipes

Tahini Potato and Kale Tamales + Your Favorites from 2017

January 2, 2018
These tahini Potato and Kale Tamales are a vegan tamale that doesn't skimp on flavor. Fluffy masa surround a filling of tahini-garlic potatoes and kale.

Happy New Year Friends!!

How were your holidays? More importantly, what was the BEST thing you ate? For me it was lovely chunks of smoked salmon from Santa Rosa Seafood  that we enjoyed before our Christmas dinner with an equally lovely glass of Stony Hill Chardonnay, rye bread, and cremé fraiche. I could’ve easily stopped there but you know I didn’t.

2018 is upon us and you know what? I’m entering my 40th year on this crazy spinning planet! Holy Moly! So I’d like to set the intention to dream big and while I’m working towards those dreams, live the moments as they come with compassion, gratitude, and pride for who I am, what I have, and how far I’ve already come. With that in mind I’d like to say, thank you. Whether you visit every week or you stop by every once in a while, I am so incredibly grateful that you are here.

Before we move forward into a new year of cooking and parties and fun, let’s take a look back at 2017 and which posts you loved best from the past year.

10. How To Throw An Italian Polenta Party

9. Masa Harina Pancakes with Vanilla Strawberries

8. Red Lentil Picnic Salad with Sweet Cider Dressing

7. Loaded Black Mole Braised Beef Fries

6. Beer-Braised Beef Barbacoa

5. Smoky Chile Relleno Rice Bowl with Chicken

4. Shrimp Ceviche Tostadas with Coconut and Lime

3. Hibiscus Mimosa Kits: The Perfect Hostess Gift for the Brunch Lover In Your Life

2. How to Make a DIY Chambord Sangria Bar

1. Cinnamon Roll Capirotada

I hope you get a chance to try some of these favorites from last year. I love that you love the variety, everything from party posts to the more traditional stuff and here’s one more before I say good-bye.

Tahini Potato and Kale Tamales

These tahini Potato and Kale Tamales are a vegan tamale that doesn't skimp on flavor. Fluffy masa surround a filling of tahini-garlic potatoes and kale.

These unique tamales were ones I created for a tamale feast I threw with my pals at Municipal Winemakers in Santa Barbara. The potato-tahini combination is one I learned from the imaginative Susana Villasuso and it seemed like a natural fit for a vegan tamale. I added a fresh touch of kale for something green and to break up the fluffy, glorious carb-load that is potatoes stuffed inside masa.

The recipe is straight-up tamales. They are a project people, but don’t let that stop you. For step-by-step with photos see this post over here. Serve the tamales with your favorite guacamole or salsa or pico. I like the Trader Joe’s salsa verde when I don’t feel like making my own.

These tahini Potato and Kale Tamales are a vegan tamale that doesn't skimp on flavor. Fluffy masa surround a filling of tahini-garlic potatoes and kale.

Tahini Potato and Kale Tamales
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
These tahini Potato and Kale Tamales are a vegan tamale that doesn't skimp on flavor. Fluffy masa surround a filling of tahini-garlic potatoes and kale.
Author:
Serves: 3 dozen
Ingredients
  • For the Potato Filling:
  • 2 ½ pounds small Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 3 tablespoons tahini
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 (10-ounce) bag chopped kale
  • For the Tamales:
  • 40 dried corn husks
  • 6 cups Maseca corn flour
  • 2 tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1½ cups lard or vegetable shortening, cut into small pieces
  • 8-9 cups warm chicken or vegetable broth
Instructions
  1. Cover potatoes with cold, salted water in a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Cook until just tender, about 8-10 minutes. Meanwhile combine tahini, garlic, smoked paprika, and salt in a large bowl.
  2. Drain potatoes and immediately transfer to bowl with tahini mixture. Gently toss potatoes until they are coated, this needs to be done while the potatoes are still hot otherwise the tahini will be too stiff to mix in. Zap for a few seconds in a microwave to melt if necessary.
  3. Bring a separate pot of salted water to a boil. Add kale and cook until wilted, about 3 minutes. Drain and plunge kale into a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. Drain and squeeze out any excess water.
To make the Tamales:
  1. Soak corn husks at least 2 hours in advance in hot water. Use a heavy plate to submerge husks in water.
  2. Combine Maseca, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Add cubed lard or shortening rubbing it into the dry ingredients with your fingers until it in very small pieces. Add 7 cups of warm broth and mix into a dough making sure all Maseca has been incorporated and there are no dry spots. It is best to mix together with your hands so you can feel any dry Maseca.
  3. Add more liquid if the masa is too dry, you want it to be easily spreadable but not runny, like fluffy mashed potatoes. Cover with plastic wrap until ready to use.
Assemble:
  1. Fill a tamale steamer with water just until it reaches the rack where the tamales will sit. Use a few of the small or ripped soaked corn husks to line the rack. Cover and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Once boiling, turn heat to medium and keep covered.
  2. Dry a soaked corn husk with a clean kitchen towel. Hold the corn husk with the wide end toward you. Using a large spoon or tamale spreader, evenly spread about ½ cup masa from the middle of the husk down leaving about ½-inch border on the sides.
  3. Place about 2-3 tablespoons of potatoes and 1 tablespoon of kale down the middle.
  4. Fold one side of masa over the filling until the two edges of the corn husk meet, and holding onto one side of corn husk, pull the other side toward the middle to press the two edges of masa together. Fold the pointy end of the corn husk up over the large end, and place on a clean baking sheet. Repeat with remaining corn husks. You can use a piece of corn husk to prevent them from opening, but it is not necessary.
  5. Place tamales vertically, open-side up in the tamale steamer, keeping them snug in the pot so they don't unravel during cooking. Make sure water is at a steady simmer and producing lots of steam. Cover tightly and steam until masa is cooked through and not doughy in the middle, about 45 minutes. Check occasionally and add more water if the pot looks dry.
  6. Remove from heat and let sit, covered, 5 to 10 minutes before removing from the pot. Tamales can also be left in the pot, covered with a clean towel (and then covered with the steamer lid) for up to an hour before serving. They will stay warm and soft if you want to make them in advance.
  7. Serve with habanero salsa, pickled onions, and radishes.

 


A Winter Hibernation Party Menu

Salsa de Cacahuate {Creamy Peanut and Chile Salsa} with Chips

Tahini Potato and Kale Tamales

Braised Pork and Chile Stew

Prairie Garden Salad

Cookie Butter Muesli Cookies

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One More Thing

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

 

All tamale images are by David Mendoza III

Dairy Free, Recipes, Side Dishes

Butternut Squash, Kale, and Walnut Stuffing

November 20, 2017
Thanksgiving isn't complete without the stuffing. This Butternut Squash, Kale, and Walnut Stuffing combines all of fall into a delicious vegan version.

Thanksgiving’s when we go all-out right?!

I was thinking about it this morning while putting the finishing touches on my menu. I mean when else do we think 6, 7, 8 side dishes are acceptable? Christmas Dinner doesn’t even see such a spread. I mean it’s nice but by the 25th we usually put a kibosh on the fourth side dish.

Thanksgiving isn't complete without the stuffing. This Butternut Squash, Kale, and Walnut Stuffing combines all of fall into a delicious vegan version.

No matter, this year we’ll be having olive oil-garlic mashed potatoes, maple and sage sweet potato gratin, fluffy warm biscuits, cranberry sauce, gravy, green salad with pomegranates, and green beans almondine. We will of course be having stuffing too!! I mean Thanksgiving just isn’t Thanksgiving without the stuffing.

Thanksgiving isn't complete without the stuffing. This Butternut Squash, Kale, and Walnut Stuffing combines all of fall into a delicious vegan version.

I first made this rustic stuffing two years ago at a Thanksgiving that started off fancy AF and ended up chaotic AF when Louisa tripped Hiro, he slammed his forehead into the corner of the wall, and ended up in the emergency room. They were playing “Make You Trip”. Louisa won.

This stuffing though, was also a winner that evening. So earthy and full of autumn, with roasted squash, sage, and toasted walnuts. I think I put chorizo in that first version but I kind of like it better without. It’s nice to have a vegan side that is so robust and absolutely killer with cranberry sauce.

Thanksgiving isn't complete without the stuffing. This Butternut Squash, Kale, and Walnut Stuffing combines all of fall into a delicious vegan version.

Oh, and don’t do like I did and leave the crust on the bread. It is MUCH better with the crusts removed. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving everyone!!

Butternut Squash, Kale, and Walnut Stuffing
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Thanksgiving isn't complete without the stuffing. This Butternut Squash, Kale, and Walnut Stuffing combines all of fall into a delicious vegan version.
Author:
Serves: 8-10 servings
Ingredients
  • 1 loaf multigrain artisan bread (about 1 pound), crust removed and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 small butternut squash, about 2 pounds, peeled, seeded, and chopped
  • ⅔ cup olive oil, divided
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 (10 bag) chopped kale, tough stems removed
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons dried sage
  • 4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1 cup walnuts, toasted
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 450°F. Bake bread in a single layer until dry, about 5-7 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl.
  2. Place squash on same baking sheet, drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast until just tender, about 20 minutes. Squash will continue to cook in the stuffing so its better for it to be a little underdone.
  3. Reduce oven heat to 350°F.
  4. Heat 3 tablespoons of the oil in a pan. Add onion and season with salt and pepper. Cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Add kale, garlic, and sage and cook until kale is wilted, about 10 minutes.
  5. Transfer mixture to bowl with bread. Add squash, broth, walnuts, and remaining oil. Season generously with salt and pepper. Stir to combine, taste and add more salt as needed.
  6. Grease a 9-x-13-inch baking dish. Transfer stuffing to pan, cover with foil, and bake 30 minutes. Remove foil and bake 30 minutes more or until crisp and browned on top.

 


A Thanksgiving Menu

Bay-Brined Roasted Turkey

Whiskey Cream Gravy

Jicama Slaw with Ginger Molasses Vinaigrette

Butternut Squash, Kale, and Walnut Stuffing

Fluffy Biscuits

Cranberry-Walnut Jell-O Salad

Roasted Carrots with Chipotle Honey Butter

Pumpkin Pie with Pepita-Gingersnap Crust

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One More Thing

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

 

Comida Latina, Condiments and Salsas, Dairy Free, Mains, Recipes, Side Dishes

Grilled Pumpkin Steaks with Black Beans and Jalapeño Pesto

November 15, 2017
Grilled pumpkin steaks are an excellent way to eat up that delicious Halloween Jack-O-Lantern with creamy black beans and spicy jalapeño pesto sauce!

I can tell it is starting to get cooler out when I start wearing a blanket like an elongated tube top around the house. I guess the shorter daylight hours just doesn’t give the sun enough time during the day to warm things up in here. It’s still not cold enough to turn the heat on, (I believe it was after Thanksgiving when that happened last year if I remember correctly), but still a slight chill in need of a blanket.

Grilled pumpkin steaks are an excellent way to eat up that delicious Halloween Jack-O-Lantern with creamy black beans and spicy jalapeño pesto sauce!

I was in touch with some friends back in North Dakota over the weekend and they filled me in on their recent snowfall. Comparatively I have nothing to complain about, just an observation that subtle seasonal changes do occur, even here in Southern California.

Grilled pumpkin steaks are an excellent way to eat up that delicious Halloween Jack-O-Lantern with creamy black beans and spicy jalapeño pesto sauce!

Aside from snowy, long distance texts, this past weekend was filled with eating up our Halloween Jack-O-Lantern before it got too old and moldy to do something with. It goes without saying that I’m my spirit-decade is the Great Depression and I can’t bear to throw anything remotely edible and I remembered this idea from when I was the Pastry Chef at Firefly Restaurant in San Francisco. These grilled pumpkin steaks were a staple on their fall menu and I always thought it was such a genius idea.

Grilled pumpkin steaks are an excellent way to eat up that delicious Halloween Jack-O-Lantern with creamy black beans and spicy jalapeño pesto sauce!

They are good with any type of winter squash— kabocha, butternut, sugar pie pumpkin—but in my opinion if you are going to eat a big, honkin’ Jack-O-Lantern, there’s no other way. You see, normally, those bigger pumpkins are super stringy and watery and really not that good to eat, but throwing them straight on the grill, uses that extra water to their advantage. As it cooks over the hot, direct heat the water bubbles up inside the flesh of the pumpkin, evaporating from the surface as it cooks and intensifying its flavor, while making it tender at the same time.

Grilled pumpkin steaks are an excellent way to eat up that delicious Halloween Jack-O-Lantern with creamy black beans and spicy jalapeño pesto sauce!

Dealing with a big pumpkin is a tad bit cumbersome, but we’ve all carved one at some point and this is much easier than that. You need a sharp, heavy knife and just slice it open. Scoop out the seeds and use a Y peeler to peel off as much skin as you can. I find it’s easier to cut the pumpkin into 4-inch “steaks” first, then peel. Don’t worry if every bit of skin doesn’t come off. Pumpkin skin is actually pretty thin and edible.

Grilled pumpkin steaks are an excellent way to eat up that delicious Halloween Jack-O-Lantern with creamy black beans and spicy jalapeño pesto sauce!

Then on the grill it goes. Thirty minutes is all it takes for a delicious vegan main or the pumpkin with the pesto sauce would make a lovely Thanksgiving side dish. Give it a try!

Grilled Pumpkin Steaks with Black Beans and Jalapeño Pesto
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Grilled pumpkin steaks are an excellent way to eat up that delicious Halloween Jack-O-Lantern with creamy black beans and spicy jalapeño pesto sauce!
Author:
Serves: 6 servings
Ingredients
For the pesto:
  • 3 jalapeños
  • ¾ cup packed mint leaves, plus more for garnish
  • ½ cup packed cilantro leaves
  • ¼ cup raw pumpkin seeds
  • 1 clove garlic
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • juice from 1 lemon
For the pumpkin steaks:
  • 4 pounds pumpkin, peeled, seeded, and cut into 4-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ cup toasted pumpkin seeds, for garnish
  • salt and pepper
For the black beans:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon coriander
  • ¼ teaspoon ground arbol chile
  • 2 (14.5 ounce) cans black beans
Instructions
For the pesto:
  1. Heat a dry skillet over high heat. Add jalapeños and char, turning occasionally, until blackened on all sides, about 10 minutes. Let cool, then remove stem, seeds, and charred skin. Chop and transfer to a food processor fitted with the blade attachment.
  2. Add mint, cilantro, pumpkin seeds, garlic, salt, and blend. With the processor running add olive oil and lemon juice. Stop blade a few times to scrape down the sides. Blend until very smooth, about 1-2 minutes. Taste and add more salt if needed. If pesto is very thick add a tablespoon or two of hot water to thin out. You want to be able to spoon it over the pumpkin.
For the pumpkin:
  1. Heat a gas or charcoal grill to medium-high. Remove as much peel as you can from the pumpkin with a Y-style vegetable peeler. It's okay if not all of it comes off, pumpkin skin is actually pretty thin and edible. Rub with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
  2. Grill about 30 minutes or until pumpkin is easily pierced with a fork and is charred on the outside. Turn pumpkin about every 10 minutes or so.
  3. Meanwhile, cook the beans. Heat oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add onions and jalapeño. Season with salt and let cook until tender, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add garlic, cumin, coriander, and ground arbol chile, and cook a minute more. Add black beans, juices and all and bring to a boil.
  5. Reduce heat to a simmer and let cook until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. Mash with a potato masher until about ½ of the beans are broken up. Taste and add more salt if needed.
To Serve: Spoon black beans on plates and top with a pumpkin steak. Drizzle pesto over the top and sprinkle with more toasted pumpkin seeds and mint. Dig in!
Notes
To toast your own pumpkin seeds, heat a generous teaspoon of oil in a hot frying pan. Add raw pumpkin seeds and toss in the oil. Cook until starting to pop and golden, stirring often. Season with salt and remove from heat.

 


Menu

La Bruja Cocktails (aka Tamarind Margaritas)

Pumpkin Steaks with Black Beans and Jalapeño Pesto

Grilled Achiote-Lime Chicken

Mexican Chocolate Pudding with Raspberries and Whipped Cream

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One More Thing

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

 

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Comida Latina, Dairy Free, Mains, Recipes, Side Dishes

Coconut Quinoa with Roasted Squash and Pumpkin Seeds

October 12, 2017
This coconut quinoa makes an excellent holiday side or vegan main dish with fluffy quinoa, big flakes of coconut, toasted pumpkin seeds, and roasted squash.

Here’s how you go big with quinoa: coconut, lots of fresh herbs, and roasted winter squash!

I’ll be the first to admit, quinoa doesn’t make me as jubilant as most carbs. It’s soapy nature doesn’t help. But I keep at it, because for one, it’s like megahealthy on the health charts and two, I think I’ve found the tastiest way to cook it yet.

I prefer the white quinoa to the other darker varieties. It cooks up light and fluffy and doesn’t squeak as much between your teeth. I simply boil the quinoa like you would pasta, then drain off any excess water. Toss the warm quinoa with coconut oil and here comes the best part: large slices of fragrant coconut. I find mine at Trader Joe’s but also Bob’s Red Mill sells bags of delicious big unsweetened flakes too and when I was living in North Dakota with not a Trader Joe’s in sight, those are the ones I would use.

This platter of goodness could be a healthy alternative for all the big holiday dinners coming up—working equally well as a side or a vegan main dish. But it also has #meatlessmonday written all over it.


Coconut Quinoa with Roasted Squash and Pumpkin Seeds
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
This coconut quinoa makes an excellent holiday side or vegan main dish with fluffy quinoa, big flakes of coconut, toasted pumpkin seeds, and roasted squash.
Author:
Serves: 6 servings
Ingredients
  • 1 small kabocha squash (about 2 pounds), peeled and seeded
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil or coconut oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt, plus more for seasoning
  • 2 cups quinoa, rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin coconut oil
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut chips
  • ½ cup chopped mixed herbs, such as basil, cilantro, mint, or parsley
  • ½ cup roasted, salted pumpkin seeds
  • ½ cup pomegranate seeds
  • 1 large, ripe avocado, peeled, pitted, and sliced
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 450°F and arrange a rack in the top of the oven.
  2. Carefully cut squash into 1-inch wedges with a sharp knife and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet (you can also cover it with a Silpat or nothing at all, this just makes clean up easier).
  3. Drizzle squash with the tablespoon of olive oil or coconut oil and season generously with salt. Toss to coat then place in the top of the oven to roast until knife tender, about 15-20 minutes. If you'd like a little extra char on the squash you can put them under the broiler for a minute or two once they are cooked through. Set aside.
  4. Meanwhile, place quinoa in a large saucepan and cover with water by 1-inch. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain and return to pan. Add coconut oil, ½ teaspoon salt, coconut chips, and herbs and stir to combine.
  5. Transfer to a large serving dish, top with squash, pumpkin seeds, pomegranate, and avocado and serve.
Notes
If you can't find roasted, salted pumpkin seeds you can make your own by heating 1 teaspoon of oil (coconut, olive, vegetable) over medium heat in a medium frying pan. Add ½ cup raw pumpkin seeds and cook, stirring frequently until toasted and starting to pop. Season with a pinch of salt and remove from the pan.

One More Thing

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

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Comida Latina, Dairy Free, Mains, Recipes, Soups and Stews

Simple Summer Vegetable Soup with Cilantro Pesto Croutons

July 25, 2017
How to make a summer vegetable soup packed with white beans, garden veggies and topped with a crispy crouton slathered with cilantro and baby spinach pesto.

We got back late last night from our European summer adventure.

The two things I’ve been dreaming about for the last couple weeks of the trip have been going for a run and a simple summer vegetable soup. I’m not sure exactly who I have become.

Normally I’m not such a health freak but after six weeks of gluttony my body was in desperate need of a reboot. This morning I hit the pavement vowing never to go on such an extended excursion without my running shoes again and then made a big pot of soup for dinner.

There’s something so intensely satisfying about potatoes and carrots and beans bubbling away in a tomatoey broth. It is the kind of simple food to regroup to, to find your balance, and most importantly, fill your belly.

As you can imagine, I’m a bit exhausted from our trip, but I wanted to share this recipe with you as I have a feeling I’m not alone in the need for simple comforts, getting back on track, or maybe just a recipe to use up your garden’s summer bounty.

The cilantro pesto croutons are obviously optional but I love their crunchy edges and soft middles, plus any extra pesto gets mixed into the soup giving it a happy little herby boost.

Simple Summer Vegetable Soup with Cilantro Pesto Croutons
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 10-12 servings
Ingredients
For the Soup:
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 leeks, halved, washed well, and sliced
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 (15-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
  • 3 small yellow potatoes, peeled and cubed (about 1 cup cubed)
  • 1 cup dried large white beans, rinsed (I used lima beans)
  • 4 cups water
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup chopped green beans
  • 1 small zucchini, chopped
For the Croutons:
  • 1 small bunch cilantro, thick stems removed (about 2 packed cups of leaves and tender stems)
  • 1 packed cup baby spinach leaves
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ cup toasted pumpkin seeds
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 baguette
Instructions
To make the soup:
  1. Heat oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Add leeks and onions and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 8 minutes.
  2. Add carrots and celery and season again with salt and pepper. Cook about 5 minutes more then add garlic and cook another minute.
  3. Add tomatoes, potatoes, beans, water, and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer, cover, and cook until beans are tender, about 1-1½ hours.
  4. Add green beans and zucchini and continue cooking until tender, about 10 minutes. Taste and add more salt if needed. I added about 1 teaspoon more.
For the Croutons:
  1. Heat oven to 425°F.
  2. Combine cilantro, spinach, garlic, salt, and pumpkin seeds in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Add oil and blend until smooth.
  3. Slice baguette into ½-inch thick slices. Spread about ½-1 teaspoon of pesto on one side of each slice then place pesto-side-up on a baking sheet. Bake until outer edges are crisp about 10 minutes.
  4. Spoon any remaining pesto into the soup pot and stir to combine. Ladel soup into bowls and top with one or two croutons.

One More Thing

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

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Condiments and Salsas, Dairy Free, Recipes, Salads, Side Dishes

Red Lentil Picnic Salad with Sweet Cider Dressing

June 27, 2017
This Red Lentil Picnic Salad is a no-cook salad that won't wilt and is hearty enough to eat on it's own but also an excellent side for picnics or barbecues.

Summer is the time for picnics and barbecues. It is not the time for standing over a hot stove, sweat beading on your brow. This is where the magic of ultra-tender split red lentils come in. Did you know you don’t even have to cook them?!!

I got this idea when I was experimenting with lentils back in April. It was my first attempts at sprouting lentils that lead to the discovery that the red ones didn’t really need to be cooked at all! When I tried to sprout them they instantly became soft and mushy, just a good soaking in water was all it took to turn them from hard seeds to beans so soft you could smash them between your fingers.

Then I thought what if I soaked them briefly, in boiling water. I bet they would be the perfect consistency for a nice crunchy salad, with just enough give to add great texture while still maintaining all their peppery flavor. Not to mention, eating them virtually raw like this keeps their nutrient level high, making them a powerhouse of a meal without the calories or fat of meat or other foods with similar amounts of protein.

Thus this picnic salad was born. I love make-ahead salads to bring to barbecues or picnics that don’t require any last-minute fussiness. Because all the components of this salad are hardy enough to handle a long marinade in the sweet ginger and cider vinegar dressing you don’t need to worry about them wilting or getting water logged by the time you get to where you’re going. That being said, the baby arugula will wilt a bit on especially long road trips so if this is a bother to you, you can always add it right before serving.


Red Lentil Picnic Salad with Sweet Cider Dressing
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 6 servings
Ingredients
  • ½ cup red lentils
  • ¼ cup minced scallions or spring onions
  • 1 tablespoons minced ginger
  • 1½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1½ teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small head broccoli, cut into small pieces
  • ¼ small head red cabbage, thinly shredded
  • 2 cups baby arugula
  • 2 large radishes, thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons dried cherries
  • 3 tablespoons sunflower seeds
Instructions
  1. Pour lentils into a fine mesh sieve and rinse under cold water. Transfer to a heat proof bowl and cover with boiling water. Let sit while you prepare the rest of the salad, or at least 30-40 minutes until they are tender but still maintain a slight bite.
  2. Combine scallions, ginger, salt, sugar, and vinegar in a small bowl. Slowly add the olive oil, whisking continuously until incorporated.
  3. Combine broccoli, cabbage, arugula, radishes, cherries, and sunflower seeds in a large bowl. Drain lentils and add to the vegetables. Pour dressing over the top and toss to combine. Taste and add more salt if needed.

One More Thing

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Lentils.org. The opinions and text are all mine. Thank you for supporting the brands that make this blog possible! Follow the hashtag #LetsLentil for great recipes all summer long!

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Comida Latina, Dairy Free, Recipes, Snacks, Sweets

Creamy Coconut Lime Paletas

June 21, 2017
Coconut lime paletas are one of my all-time favorite Mexican popsicles. They are so creamy and delicious but are actually vegan, low-cal, and easy to make!

Hey, Hey! 2017 #PaletaWeek is here!!

Thank God and bless the lovely Lola from Lola’s Cocina; she has impeccable timing, because it is HOT and all I want to eat are creamy, dreamy, frozen treats and she’s organized an entire WEEK of them!! Make sure you follow the #PaletaWeek hashtag on social for all the updates.

My contribution is about the easiest paleta you can make (aside from maybe pouring juice in a popsicle mold). It requires no special equipment—you could totally make these in paper cups if you want— and takes about 10 minutes to put together from start to pouring them in the molds.

But oh my are they delicious! Creamy coconut milk and fresh-squeezed lime juice are a dream combination. I sweetened them with agave syrup to save a little on the calories but the secret ingredient is the tiny shreds of lime zest which pool a bit at the bottom of the mold making those first few bites just sing with tart flavor.

I got a new popsicle mold this year and I’m loving it, I feel muy profesional because now my paletas look just like the ones from our local paleta shop. But I’m known to make popsicles in just about anything, juice glasses, paper cups, you name it. What I’m trying to say is there should be absolutely nothing stopping you from making yourself some homemade paletas this summer.

Creamy Coconut Lime Paletas
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 6-8 paletas
Ingredients
  • 1 (13.5 ounce) can full-fat coconut milk
  • 6 tablespoons agave syrup
  • ¼ cup fresh-squeezed lime juice
  • 1½ teaspoons finely shredded lime zest
  • pinch of salt
Instructions
  1. Whisk all the ingredients together in a large bowl.
  2. Pour into popsicle molds, insert sticks and place in freezer for 4-8 hours depending on how cold your freezer is.
  3. To remove: run each mold under hot water for 10-20 seconds or until the paleta easily removes from the mold. Return to the freezer until ready to eat.

Head over to Lola’s Cocina for a list of all the Paleta Week Recipes and check out these favorites too!

 

One More Thing

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

Comida Latina, Dairy Free, Recipes, Snacks, Sweets

Vegan Guava Cream Pie Pops

June 25, 2016
Vegan Guava Cream Pie Pops Recipe

My sincerest hope is by the time you read this all our shit will be loaded into a semi trailer and out of our house. What will be left is the scrubbing of the bathtub and the wiping down of everything else. The truck will be pulling out of town tomorrow so whatever is not on there by now is getting left behind. What’s the funniest thing you’ve ever left in a move?

When Armando and I moved from Montana after grad school we left two mattresses in the back of someone’s pick-up truck and some horse hair in their cowboy boot. It’s the wild west out there man…and also we’re assholes.

Vegan Guava Cream Pie Pops Recipe

It goes without saying that moving is exhausting. I wake up every morning feeling like I was a contender on America Ninja Warrior the night before but had done nothing nearly as glorious. Unless wrapping unopened soy sauce in foam and plastic wrap is similar.

I appreciate last week’s self when I remember I still have a couple of these creamy paletas in my freezer. A couple weeks back Meg from Beard + Bonnet shared her Vegan Mexican Chocolate Popsicles on the blog and her method of combining raw cashews with coconut milk was so easy and the results so creamy I had to try it with other flavors to see if it would work with something else. When Lola from Lola’s Cocina asked if I’d share a recipe for #paletaweek I knew exactly what I wanted to do.

Vegan Guava Cream Pie Pops Recipe

Guava is a passionate flavor. It is sour like quince but when cooked down into a thick fruit paste the sugars are deepened and become bold. Guava takes well to creamy things. That’s why the combination of guava paste and cream cheese is so popular in Latin homes. Puff pastry + cream cheese + guava = heaven. You can buy guava paste at practically any grocery store next to where they sell other Mexican products. You can absolutely find it at a Latin grocery store, or buy it online.

Vegan Guava Cream Pie Pops Recipe

Let’s not let our lack of retro popsicle molds come between us and creamy frozen dream pops. Popsicle molds don’t have to be from a fancy kitchen store, nor do they have to be specifically popsicle molds at all. These cute little molds I’ve had for so long that I’ve lost the sticks that came with them so I just tightly cover the top with plastic wrap and make slits just big enough for wooden sticks to fit through. You can do the same with small paper cups, little juice glasses, or whatever you have on hand (champagne flutes, perhaps?).

Vegan Guava Cream Pie Pops Recipe

Paper cups are easy to get off, just tear away the sides and there you have it. With juice glasses you will need to run them under hot water for a few seconds until they start to loosen then twist and turn them until they come loose. Stick them back in the freezer for a 15 minutes to get hard again.

Vegan Guava Cream Pie Pops Recipe

A pie popsicle would not be a pie popsicle without the exterior crunch of the “crust” component. A few graham cracker crumbs are like the icing on the cake, so to speak.

Don’t forget to check out all the paleta recipes over on Lola’s Cocina. My favorites have been Tamarind and Mango Paletas with Chile from HolaSus, Paletas de Fresa con Crema (Strawberries and Cream Pops) from The Other Side of the Tortilla, and Cochata Paletas (Coffee + Horchata) from Two Plus Luna but there are over 30 more on her Paleta Week Page.

One last thing: we are moving this week so it might be radio silence from me for a little while. I will be back (from my new California kitchen!!!!) in a few weeks, so stay tuned. I hope you all have an excellent 4th of July, stay safe, have fun and keep in touch on Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat (@holajalapeno). xoxo, Kate

Vegan Guava Cream Pie Pops Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 12 Popsicles

Recipe inspired by these popsicles from Beard and Bonnet.

Cover frozen pops and keep in the freezer for up to 3 days.

Guava paste is a jellied fruit much like membrillo and can be found in the ethnic aisle of most grocery stores and also online here

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (about 6 ounces) raw cashews
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 (24.7 ounce) can guava paste
  • 1 (13.5 ounce) can full-fat coconut milk
  • 9 graham crackers, crushed

Instructions

  1. Combine cashews and water in a blender and blend until smooth. Add guava paste and coconut milk and blend until smooth. You may need to do this in batches depending on the size of your blender.
  2. Pour into popsicle molds and freeze until solid, about 6-8 hours.
  3. Remove paletas from molds by running under hot water for a few seconds. Roll in the crushed graham crackers and freeze again until hard.
http://www.holajalapeno.com/2016/06/guava-cream-pie-pops.html

Comida Latina, Dairy Free, Recipes, Snacks, Sweets

Lemon Balm-Lime Paletas

June 22, 2016
Lemon Balm Lime Paletas Recipe

I planted lemon balm in my herb garden last summer. I planted lemon balm because last June 14th when our local greenhouse closed for the summer (so the employees could tend their own expanding gardens) they were giving the remaining plants away and I would never/could never abandon a live plant.

Lemon Balm Lime Paletas Recipe

My garden is typically a 50/50 mix of intentional plants and orphan plants that are given to me by friends and closing greenhouses. I’m both not picky and continually surprised by what pops up the next year. When the lemon balm came back this spring I was overjoyed with its return. If you’ve never seen, or better yet, smelled lemon balm you are in for a pleasant surprise. The scent and flavor is lemony of course, but also minty and green grassy with a hint of thunderstorm. It makes a down right sophisticated glass of iced tea and is completely sublime frozen into popsicles.

Lemon Balm-Lime Paletas Recipe

Which brings me to the importance of this post—It’s Popsicle Week!! Billy Green of Wit and Vinegar has brought together a gazillion food bloggers to show off their best popsicle creations (as if you didn’t know) and my, my are things getting frosty.

Lemon Balm Lime Paletas Recipe

I dedicate my creation to my favorite Mexican paleta flavor–Limón. Paletas de limón are like eating limeade concentrate with a grapefruit spoon, equal parts super-intense and super-refreshing. Add to this the gentle flavors of lemon balm and you have pure summer magic.

Lemon Balm Lime Paletas Recipe

Don’t forget to check out the Popsicle Week page all week long for an ever expanding list of popsicle flavors. So far my favorites include Cinnamon and Toasted Almond Dulce de Leche Cheesecake Pops from An Edible Mosaic, London Fog Pops from Erin Made This, and Vegan Sea Salt Caramel Coffee Pops from Dula Notes but there’s going to be like 100 more—which ones are your favorites?

Lemon Balm-Lime Popsicles Recipe

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 8 popsicles

Ingredients

  • 1 packed cup lemon balm leaves, divided
  • 2 cups water
  • 2/3 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 (1-inch) strips lime zest
  • 1 cup fresh lime juice (about 5 large limes)

Instructions

  1. Combine half the lemon balm leaves, water, lime zest, and sugar in a medium saucepan. Set over medium heat and bring to a boil; stirring until sugar dissolves. Cover, remove from heat, and let cool.
  2. Thinly slice remaining lemon balm leaves. Strain sugar mixture into a 1-quart measuring cup or bowl. Add lime juice and sliced lemon balm leaves.
  3. Pour into popsicle molds using the measuring cup or funnel and freeze until solid, about 4-5 hours. If you want the leaves to be dispersed in the popsicles, give them a stir every hour for the first 2-3 hours or until too hard to stir.
http://www.holajalapeno.com/2016/06/lemon-balm-lime-paletas.html