Leng’s salad (vegan, gluten-free, peanut free option)


As promised, here’s the post I promised which features one of my favorite sauces that pairs well with many dishes. Although the National Day of Peanut Butter may have passed, peanut butter lovers know that any day is a good day to enjoy this nutty legume. (For those with allergies and non-peanut butter lovers, you can sub in almond butter).

I call this recipe Leng’s Salad in honor of a woman our family got to know a couple of years ago. She and her family were refugees we had the privilege mentoring for a short time. While they’ve since moved away, every time I make this salad, I think of how much they enjoyed it at our home. Given that they’re Asian and this is an Asian inspired recipe, I wasn’t sure if it would fly or flop. But it was a hit. 🙂


As with most salads, this is a mix-and-match, add-what-you-like-best free for all. When I want a super quick version, I’m even content with two of these ingredients – usually kale and cabbage. This usually is a crowd pleaser (unless you have a picky crowd or your “crowd” includes humans under the age of “skeptical about most vegetables), so be brave and try it out at your next potluck.

CLICK HERE TO PRINT A PDF of the Leng’s Salad recipe

Leng’s Salad

Prep Time: 20 minutes



    For the Salad

    • kale, destemmed, roughly chopped
    • red or green cabbage, roughly sliced or shredded
    • carrots,peeled into strips or shredded*
    • green onions, finely sliced
    • sunflower seeds

    Additional mix-in/combination options:

    • cauliflower, roughly chopped
    • sweet potato fries, diced*
    • rutabaga, diced
    • raw brussel sprouts, finely sliced or shredded
    • brown rice pasta*
    • red pepper, finely sliced

    621 Thai Dressing (makes 5-6 servings)

    • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
    • 1 teaspoon powdered ginger
    • 1 teaspoon red curry paste
    • 6 tablespoon coconut aminos
    • 5-8 tablespoon almond milk (or other non-dairy milk)
    • 6 tablespoons peanut or almond butter


    For the Salad

    Chop all ingredients into bite-sized pieces. If using cabbage, slice thinly. Mix well.

    For the Dressing

    Add all ingredients to a jar and stir or shake until thoroughly mixed. Add more almond milk if needed or for desired consistency.

    Recipe Notes

    I didn’t list quantities with the salad ingredients because salads are so flexible. Just adjust your portions as needed. Generally, one full handful of combined ingredients = 1 side salad portion and two-three handfuls work for a main course salad portion.

    *Omit these options and sub in almond butter in the dressing for the strict portion of the candida diet and/or for a paleo-friendly salad

    I opted to create this dressing recipe using garlic and ginger powered because it’s quick and easy. Most days I would not have the patience to mince the garlic or ginger for the dressing. I recommend using organic powdered ginger or a brand that does not add sulfur.

    You might want to start with adding 5 T of your non-dairy milk to start and then add more until you get the desired pouring consistency. This dressing will thicken as it sits, so you may need to add a little more milk the next day. I’m not sure how another type of non-dairy milk will affect the taste or consistency.

    When I sub in almond butter, I usually use roasted almond butter, either chunky or smooth. Raw almond butter would work too, but it might affect the taste/consistency.

    The dressing keeps well for several days in the fridge. I often will make up a jar and then pour it over my salads all week.

    Powered by Recipage
    Like what you see? Show with a share!

    field of greens salad with stadium mustard dressing & crackerjack peanuts

    field of greens saladEight years in and we finally signed our middle son up for baseball this year. It was something I’d meant to do several years ago, but somehow it’s hard to think baseball when registration is required in the throes of winter.

    An avid sports fan, my husband has been looking forward to this from the birth of our first child. And he’s been teaching our boys especially how to root-root-root for the home team even when they often “snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.” (It’s been decades since they won a World Series.)teamI have my own fond baseball memories…the Toronto Blue Jays winning the World Series two years in a row (though we’ve moved away, I’ll always quietly root for them too), my years as a pitcher on our high school slow pitch team, and neighborhood boys breaking out the bats and mitts as soon as the air breathed spring.

    100_2672So with baseball season in full swing, I thought it would be fun to create a salad inspired by “American’s pastime.”field of greens CollageCucumbers and marinated mushrooms (an homage to a ball and mitt) nestle on a field of kale and Brussel sprouts. “Crackerjack” peanuts are a nod to the classic stadium snack but are coated with dates to keep the sugar “outta there.” Topping it off is a bittersweet stadium mustard dressing.crackerjackpeanutsA note on the peanuts: If saving money is important to you, it’s cheaper to shell them yourself. Seeing as we had a 5 lb. bag hanging around the house, this is the route I’ve taken lately). However, if time is of the essence, go for the pre-shelled and roasted peanuts. If you splurge on Spanish-roasted peanuts (my favorite choice for this salad), be sure to gently rub them in a clean kitchen towel to remove the skins.

    CLICK HERE TO PRINT A PDF of the field of greens salad recipe

    field of greens salad

    Prep Time: 20-30 minutes

    Cook Time: 10-15 minutes

    Serves: 4-6 people



      for the Salad

      • Brussel sprouts, finely chopped
      • Kale, destemmed and chopped
      • Cucumber, sliced

      for the Marinated Mushrooms

      • 4 large Portabella mushroom caps or 16 oz. baby bellas
      • 1/3-1/2 cup coconut aminos
      • oregano
      • garlic powder
      • freshly ground black pepper

      for the “Crackerjack” peanuts

      • ½ cup shelled peanuts or Spanish peanuts
      • 1 T date paste
      • 2-3 T water

      for the Stadium Mustard dressing

      • ¼ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
      • ¼ cup unsweetened almond milk
      • 2 T stadium mustard
      • 2 T tahini
      • 1.5-2 tsp. agave or coconut nectar
      • ½ tsp. regular mustard
      • ¼ tsp. garlic powder
      • few dashes turmeric for color (optional)


      Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

      Meanwhile, in a saucepan over medium high heat, combine date paste and water, stirring to combine. Add peanuts and continue to stir over medium high heat until they begin to clump together and the date paste begins to dry out (about 5-7 minutes). You may need to reduce the heat near the end of the cooking time to prevent the date paste from burning.

      Transfer peanuts to a baking pan and place in oven for another 5 minutes. Remove and cool.

      In a frying pan, add ingredients for the Marinated Mushrooms, bring liquid to a boil, reduce heat and cook until most of the liquid has reduced. Cool.

      For the dressing, combine all ingredients in a jar and shake vigorously to combine.

      Combine kale and Brussel sprouts, then arrange cucumber slices on top followed by the “Crackerjack” peanuts and marinated mushrooms, drizzle with dressing.*

      Recipe Notes

      I like Spanish peanuts best. If using, then gently rub in a clean kitchen towel to remove the skins. Add extra prep time if shelling your own peanuts.

      “Crackerjack” peanuts can be stored in an airtight jar for several days and are great for snacking. The date paste coating may soften a little, especially in humid conditions.

      The dressing stores well in the fridge for several days. I like adding the turmeric for eye-pleasing color. A few dashes goes a long way as the color intensifies slightly over time.

      My favorite way to serve salads is to prepare the base and set out toppings and dressing separately. That way, any leftovers will stay fresh.

      Powered by Recipage
      Like what you see? Show with a share!

      lemon squares (vegan, low sugar, gluten free)

      lemon squaresI think one of the hardest things to do when you change the way you eat is to stop indulging in your memory of the foods you used to enjoy. It’s hard to convince the brain that the sugar/dairy/meat-laden dish once inhaled without second thought will now cause your body to launch a revolt.

      I have a few food memories that are hard to short circuit. One of them is of the lemon squares my husband whipped up one dreary afternoon – made with extra lemon juice. I almost swoon at the memory.

      100_1796Tempting as it is to consider making a conventional batch of lemon squares to satisfy my lemon cravings, the sugar content alone scratches it off the list. You can read a little about my decision to cut back on sugar here.

      Thankfully, the plant-based, low sugar lemon curd recipe I posted earlier this month is an excellent substitute for the traditional lemon square filling. It’s complemented by a gluten free, coconut crust, inspired by this recipe. And the icing sugar? It’s actually a dusting of coconut flour.

      lemon square collageWhat is your favorite lemon dish? What foods do you have a hard time resisting based on the memory alone?

      CLICK HERE TO PRINT A PDF of the lemon squares recipe

      lemon squares (vegan, low sugar, gluten free)

      Prep Time: 10-15 minutes

      Cook Time: 15-17 minutes

      Serves: 16 squares


        for the Crust & Topping

        • 1 c. shredded, unsweetened coconut
        • 1 c. almond flour
        • ½ tsp. baking soda
        • 1 scoop 100% pure stevia
        • ¼ c. melted coconut oil
        • 1 tsp. coconut nectar or agave
        • ½ tsp. vanilla
        • Coconut flour (for dusting)

        for the Filling

        • ¾ c. freshly squeezed lemon juice
        • Zest from one organic lemon (optional)
        • ½ c. white grape juice
        • 3 T coconut nectar or agave
        • 2 scoops 100% pure stevia
        • 5 T organic cornstarch
        • ¼ tsp. salt
        • 1 T vegan butter
        • Cream from 1 can full fat coconut milk
        • Scant 1/8 tsp turmeric (optional)


        Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

        Using your hands, mix all ingredients for the macaroon crust together in a bowl.

        Pour crust into a greased 8”x8” glass baking dish and press crust firmly to compact it together.

        Bake for 10-12 minutes or until crust is lightly browned. Cool.

        While crust is baking, combine juices, zest if using, sweeteners, cornstarch and salt in a sauce pan. Whisk constantly over high heat until mixtures begins to thicken. Don’t worry if it takes on a lumpy texture, step 2 will smooth it out!

        Immediately turn off heat and whisk in butter and coconut cream until smooth.

        Add turmeric for a brighter lemony color.

        Cool slightly, then pour over crust.

        Recipe Notes

        The more you press the crust, the better it will hold together after baking.

        Use a pizza cutter to give a nice clean cut to the squares.

        I love this recipe for the lemon curd because even if your mixture goes lumpy in step one, adding the coconut cream and butter and giving it a good hard whisk seems to correct it back to smooth and silky.

        *It’s best to use organic lemons if you want to add the zest because of the high pesticide content in the rind, however if you’re just using the juice and organic lemons are out of your budget, regular lemons will do.

        Make sure the stevia you use is 100% pure as many stevia products have additives including added sweeteners. I get mine at Trader Joe’s and it comes with its own tiny scoop.

        Organic cornstarch, while on the pricey side is best because of GMOs in nonorganic corn.

        I use Thai Kitchen’s full fat coconut milk because the coconut cream is often already separated from the liquid. However, if the cream hasn’t consolidated on its own (you can tell by giving the can a gentle shake, refrigerate it overnight upside down.

        I found adding a little turmeric enhances the visual appeal of the curd since the white grape juice and coconut nectar or agave produce a beige-colored curd.

        Refrigerate to set, then use a sieve to dust with coconut flour.

        Powered by Recipage
        Like what you see? Show with a share!

        BLT salad with garlic herb dressing (vegan, soy free)

        BLT saladOne of the things I’ve most appreciated with eating a well-balanced plant-based diet is the need for creativity and resourcefulness.  Adding rich flavors to vegetables without the use of meat or cheese is challenging, but there is deep satisfaction when I hit upon something that works.

        Take this BLT salad for instance.

        Until Angela had shared a recipe for coconut bacon in a pre-order recipe pack for her cookbook* I thought my bacon-eating days were over. Well, except for those occasional times when my husband makes it and I  have a bite or two.  Yes, I chegan.

        coconut bacon

        But back to the salad…

        With coconut bacon on the scene suddenly recipes featuring its salty, smokey deliciousness were possible. You can also see where I featured it here and here.

        So I turned one of my all time favorite sandwiches into a salad.

        blt salad labelledAdmittedly, the is no “L” in this salad at all…I replaced it with a “K” instead. “K” as in kale for it’s meaty structure and iron-packed punch. A rich garlic herb dressing takes the place of mayo. I also toss in cucumber, raw pumpkin seeds and a non-traditional ingredient, either raisins or apple-juice sweetened cranberries, for a delightful sweetness and chewiness.

        But enough of talking it up, let’s just get to the recipe – I’ve included the one for coconut bacon separately since, really, it is its own thing…

        (Oh, and I’m curious fellow plant-eating lovers, do you occasionally nibble from the animal kingdom? If so, for what foods?)

        CLICK HERE TO PRINT A PDF of the BLT salad recipe
        CLICK HERE TO PRINT A PDF of the coconut bacon recipe

         BLT salad with garlic herb dressing (vegan, soy free)

        Prep Time: 10-15 minutes

        Serves: 4 people


          for the salad

          • Organic kale, finely chopped
          • Organic cherry tomatoes, halved
          • Cucumber, sliced
          • Raw pumpkin seeds
          • Raisins
          • Coconut bacon (recipe separate)
          • Garlic herb dressing
          • Optional toppings:
          • Dried cranberries

          for the garlic herb dressing

          • ¼ c. lemon juice
          • ¼ c. tahini
          • ¼ c. unsweetened vanilla almond milk
          • 1 garlic clove
          • ¼ c. fresh parsley
          • ½ tsp. dried dill
          • ¼ tsp. salt
          • dashes freshly ground pepper


          1. Make coconut bacon and cool.*
          2. Combine all salad ingredients, except for the dressing.
          3. In a small food processor or a blender, combine salad dressing ingredients and blend until smooth.
          4. Spoon over individual salad servings.
          5. Store remaining dressing in refrigerator.

          recipe notes

          • *See this recipe @ wildberrypress.com for the coconut bacon recipe
          • Organic kale and tomatoes are best to avoid high pesticide concentrations.
          • Approximately one hand full of chopped kale equals one salad serving.
          • I recommend trying apple juice sweetened cranberries. Natural food stores may carry them or you can find them online.
          Powered by Recipage


           *I am an Amazon associate. If you purchase the cookbook through this link, it will provide a small credit to my account.

          Like what you see? Show with a share!

          jolly good potato & leek soup (vegan, oil free)

          100_2326With a new baby welcomed into the monarchy and surprising election results, the Brits have been in the headlines of late. So it seems rather timely to post a recipe that I often associate with England.

          I have a soft spot for the UK since we were blessed to live there for a few years when I was growing up, coupled with the fact that one of my grandmother’s haled from England, a war bride of the 1940’s.

          grandpa nan
          my grandpa & nan on their honeymoon in England

          The first month we lived there, we had tea and cookies every night.

          Back in March, I shared this recipe for vegan cabbage rolls, a nod to the Polish side of my heritage. As much as I’d like to veganize one of the more traditional British meals which my “Nan” often made – roast beef and Yorkshire puddings – it just wouldn’t be the same. Instead, I’ll turn to another recipe traditional to the British Isles…potato and leek soup.

          This is a recipe handed down to me from my mom and is super simple to make. As with many soups, it tastes better the second day, so consider making it ahead of time to let the flavors fully develop.potato leek soupCLICK HERE TO PRINT A PDF of the potato & leek soup recipe

          jolly good potato & leek soup

          Prep Time: 10-15 minutes

          Cook Time: 30-40 minutes

          Serves: 10-12


          • 2 medium leeks, sliced
          • 1 medium onion, diced
          • 7 medium organic russet potatoes, peeled & diced
          • ¾ tsp. salt
          • Dashes freshly ground pepper
          • water


          Sauté leeks and onions in a large stock pot in a little water until tender, about 5 minutes.

          Add potatoes and add water until potatoes are loosely floating.

          Bring to a boil, then reduce heat, add seasonings and simmer until potatoes can be mashed until smooth.

          Add more water if necessary to achieve desired consistency

          Recipe Notes

          Organic potatoes are best to use since potatoes have a high pesticide content.

          The soup tends to thicken as it sits, so you may need to add more water upon reheating.

          The consistency for this soup that I like best is one that is easily pourable without being too watery.

          Powered by Recipage



          Like what you see? Show with a share!

          calico brownies (gluten free, low sugar, vegan) + fair trade

          100_2143Disclaimer: This is a post that starts out seriously but ends in chocolate.

          My husband and I are reading the book, “The Big Truck That Went By: How the World Came to Save Haiti and Left Behind a Disaster.” It’s written by an American journalist living in Haiti when the earthquake struck five years ago. However, it’s also a book which details Haiti’s volatile history, sometimes of their own making, but also from in the influence of foreign powers rocking their boat. With the earthquake that just happened in Nepal and more natural disasters of increasing intensity on their way, it’s a timely book to be reading.

          But what does Haiti have to do with brownies?

          calicobrowniesNot much. At least in the sense that Haiti isn’t a large producer of the world’s chocolate  or coconut oil (it does export some). However, many of the trade practices which adversely affect Haiti on other fronts (which Katz relates in the book), also are in place with countries that do produce the most of the chocolate and coconut oil we consume.

          For those of us living in affluent nations, the sad truth is that certain imported foods we enjoy at low cost to us comes at a high cost to others. (If you are interested in learning more about the importance of fair trade, I’ve included some links at the end of this post following the recipe.)

          But I believe this can change because every time I make a purchase decision, I am casting my vote not only for the product but also for the business practice that brought it to the shelf.

          So when a recipe calls for an ingredient that largely is produced and exported from a developing nation, I cast my vote in favor of fair trade as much as possible.

          (Here’s where the brownies come in!)

          Unlike most brownies which carry a high sugar content, these Calico Brownies, which are adapted from the “Peanut Butter Brownie” recipe found in “Vegan Planet”* on page 508, derive most of their sweetness from dates. They also feature fair trade cocoa power and fair trade coconut oil…which I think makes them taste all the sweeter.

          CLICK HERE TO PRINT A PDF of the calico brownies recipe

           calico brownies

          Prep Time: 10 minutes

          Cook Time: 25 minutes

           Serves: 16 brownies


          • 2 flax eggs (2 T ground flax + 6 T water)
          • ½ cup fair trade coconut oil
          • 1 tsp. vanilla
          • 1/8 cup agave or other liquid sweetener
          • 1 cup date paste
          • 1 cup brown rice flour
          • ¾ cup fair trade unsweetened baking cocoa
          • 3 scoops 100% pure stevia
          • 1 tsp. baking powder
          • ¼-1/3 c. no sugar natural peanut butter


          Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

          In small bowl, combine the flax seed and water to make the flax eggs. Set aside.

          In a large saucepan, melt oil, add in vanilla and agave, then turn off heat.

          Break date paste into smaller pieces and stir into liquid mixture – using a potato masher works well to further break up the date paste.

          Add in flax eggs and stir.

          Add in dry ingredients and stir thoroughly to combine (the mixture will appear dense and crumble in large pieces.

          Pour mixture into greased 8×8 glass baking dish and press down firmly with hands.

          Pour peanut butter over batter and use a knife to work it in, then press down batter again (keeping your hands moistened with water helps prevent the batter from sticking to them.

          Bake 20 minutes.

          Let it cool completely before cutting.

          Recipe Notes

          Typically, I’ve purchased Equal Exchange’s Unsweetened Baking Cocoa at my local health food store, but recently found Frontier’s Unsweetened Baking Cocoa for less at Abe’s Market. (you can get free shipping on orders over $49.) I usually buy Br. Bronner’s brand of fair trade coconut oil.

          Make sure the stevia you use is 100%, otherwise results will vary. I buy mine at Trader Joe’s and it comes with its own scoop.

          Powered by Recipage


           *I am an Amazon associate. If you purchase the cookbook through this link, it will provide a small credit to my account.


          Like what you see? Show with a share!

          sweet potato & lentil soup (vegan, oil-free)

          2009-01-19 17.49.37The first vegan cookbook I ever purchased was Vegan Planet by Robin Robertson*. It was during the season in my life that my oldest son likes to refer to as “the time when we weren’t eating healthy.” I refer to it as the time when I didn’t realize the benefits of eating a plant-based diet.

          But the Lord knew He would bring me to this place, so He gradually encouraged me to go meat-free on more than just Monday. I started by exploring vegan and vegetarian cookbooks in our local library until I stumbled upon Vegan Planet*.

          One of my favorite recipes from the book is Robin’s “Indian-spiced Lentil Soup” on page 78.

          Although soups are most often thought of in the fall and winter, I make them year round. Especially when spring shows its chillier side.



          100_1757And I think this soup is especially spring-like with the bright addition of cilantro, an herb that flourishes in cooler temperatures.

          2009-01-19 17.12.30Spring, summer, fall, winter, here is my version of this sweet potato lentil soup.

          swplentilsoup CLICK HERE TO PRINT A PDF of the sweet potato lentil soup recipe

          sweet potato lentil soup

          Prep Time: 10-15 minutes

          Cook Time: 60-70 minutes

          Ingredients (6-8)

          • 1 small onion, diced
          • 1 celery rib, chopped
          • 2 garlic cloves, minced
          • 1 small sweet potato, peeled & diced
          • 1-14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes
          • 1 tsp. ground ginger
          • 1 tsp. ground cumin
          • 1 tsp ground coriander
          • 1 ½ cups dried brown lentils
          • 6 cups water
          • ½ cup cilantro leaves, minced
          • ½-3/4 tsp. salt
          • Dashes of pepper


          In a stock pot, sauté onions, celery and garlic in a little water until onion is translucent (about 5 minutes)

          Add sweet potatoes and sauté 5 minutes more.

          Add water, tomatoes and seasonings except the cilantro. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 50 to 55 minutes until the lentils and sweet potato are cooked through.

          Add cilantro and cook 10 minutes more.

          Recipe Notes

          As with most soups, this one tastes even better the second day when the flavors have fully developed.

          This soup freezes well, so make some extra and keep on hand when you need a meal in a pinch.

           *I am an Amazon associate. If you purchase the cookbook through this link, it will provide a small credit to my account.

          Powered by Recipage


          Like what you see? Show with a share!

          naturally salty sweet peanut butter banana jumblelaya (vegan, nut-free/raw option)

          100_1879Sometimes, I think the best recipes are those that are cobbled together…a little of this, a little of that, nothing measured. Just a few favorite ingredients in a bowl, in a cup, on a plate. Snacking especially lends itself to improv eating.

          Although my go to snack often is enough to satisfy, sometimes, I’m looking for something a little bit more…

          100_1883This snack is by no means intended to approximate the traditional Cajun jambalaya in the rice-veggies-meat sense, but it does mimic the dish’s mish mash approach to pulling ingredients together.

          Peanut butter + banana have long been a favorite of mine. (In my white-bread eating days, it was especially satisfying eat the pb+b on a toasted plain bagel.)

          Add in naturally sweet dried coconut and raisins and the hint of cinnamon and you have an unconventional, yet satisfying snack. I usually toss all these ingredients in a bowl, but for the pictures, I used a small canning jar, because it just looks prettier.

          If you have a nut allergy, substitute in sunflower seed butter. And if you prefer eating raw, use a raw nut butter. I recommend using a salted nut/seed butter as it complements the delicate sweetness of the fruit.

          CLICK HERE TO PRINT A PDF of the salty sweet peanut butter banana jumblelaya

           Salty Sweet Peanut Butter Banana Jumblelaya





          1 banana per person
          Unsweetened, shredded dried coconut
          Salted peanut butter or nut or seed butter of choice

          1. Slice bananas into a bowl, jar or mug
          2. Sprinkle on cinnamon
          3. Add remaining ingredients in desired quantity
          4. Enjoy!

          Like what you see? Show with a share!

          oven-baked sweet potato chips + guacamole (vegan, oil-free)

          2009-01-18 19.13.25I grew up in a home where we ate quite a variety of foods, especially fruits and vegetables. But somehow the avocado eluded us. And guacamole? The first time I tried it I was in my late twenties.

          It was love-at-first-bite.

          guacamole collage But chips, guac’s side kick, are rather low on the healthy eating spectrum, sprouted, organic, GMO-free or not. And despite their salty, crunchy tastiness, I’ve been looking beyond the vegan label to examine what I’m actually putting into my body.  Because eating a plant-based diet doesn’t necessarily = a healthy diet.

          So when I want a healthier compadre for my guacamole, I round up some sweet potatoes and put them to work. According to WebMD, sweet potatoes are full of calcium, potassium and vitamins A & C.sweet potato rounds collageBoth recipes are simple to prepare and contain a small handful of ingredients.

          But before we get to the recipes, I wondered…are there any foods or dishes that somehow eluded you in childhood that you discovered as an adult?

          CLICK TO PRINT A PDF of the guacamole recipe
          CLICK HERE TO PRINT A PDF of the oven baked sweet potato chips recipe

          oven baked sweet potato chips & guacamole (oil free, vegan)

          Prep Time: 10-15 minutes

          Cook Time: 45-60 minutes

          Keywords: bake raw appetizer snack side gluten-free nut-free oil free paleo soy-free sugar-free vegan vegetarian garlic avocado cilantro sweet potato Cinco de Mayo Mexican


            For the Sweet Potato Chips

            • Sweet potatoes
            • Salt
            • Chili powder
            • Cumin

            For the Guacamole

            • 1 avocado
            • 1- 1½ tsp. fresh lime juice
            • 1-2 T cilantro
            • 1 small garlic clove, minced
            • 1 tsp. cumin
            • 1/8 tsp. salt
            • Freshly ground pepper


            For the Sweet Potato Chips

            Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

            Meanwhile, peel sweet potatoes, then slice into rounds about ¼” thick.

            Place rounds on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and sprinkle with seasonings to your taste.

            Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hours, turning at least once until potatoes are cooked through.

            For the Guacamole

            Peel the avocado, remove pit and mash.

            Add remaining ingredients to the avocado and stir thoroughly.

            Best if served immediately.

            Recipe Notes

            Plan to prepare approximately 1-2 sweet potatoes per person depending on the size of the potato.

            Sweet potato chips are best when freshly cooked, but can be stored in the fridge and then reheated

            Avocados are ripe when their skins are black and they yield gently to the touch.

            A fork or potato masher work well to mash the avocado.

            Sometimes I add in diced onion and/or finely diced tomatoes to mix things up a bit.

            Powered by Recipage
            Like what you see? Show with a share!

            oh-lay early spring salad

            2009-01-08 14.07.00It’s funny how much we talk about the weather, at least around these parts. Perhaps it’s because we’re all in it together, this waiting for spring to be spring.

            I check weather updates repeatedly as if somehow my multiple visits per day to our local weather station’s website will translate to warmer temperatures in the forecast. Even now my fingers are itching to check it once again. The calendar says it’s spring, but the temperatures seem reluctant to leave winter behind. I need to remind myself as I remind my children that it is the Lord who controls the weather and, thankfully, He is not bound by a calendar.

            spring inside
            lavender for our door :: wheatgrass courtesy of my youngest who bought it for my oldest :: a nod to another favorite past time

            At least I can bring spring inside our home and to our table. For our home, I’m switching out winter photographs, prints and decorations. (And if you’re looking for spring printables, here are a few free ones I found around the web: (Hello Spring by On Sutton Place; Hello Spring by Sandy Toes and Popsicles; Bicycles by Oh So Lovely blog)

            And for our table, I looking to grace it with recipes that incorporate springtime vegetables and my favorite minneola oranges which are only available for a short time in the stores where we live .

            early spring saladSo I was excited a few weeks back to have this recipe arrive in my inbox from Minimalist Baker.  I tried it out, but didn’t like the combination of the beans and quinoa with the lettuce, though I might have liked it better with kale (it’s a texture thing). So I made a few modifications to come up with the Oh-lay! Early Spring Salad featuring a pumpkin seed parmesan.

            CLICK HERE TO PRINT A PDF of the Oh-lay Early Spring Salad recipe

            oh-lay early spring salad

            Prep Time: 20-30 minutes

            Cook Time: 1-2 minutes

            Serves: 4 people


              For the Salad

              • Spring greens mix
              • Asparagus, roughly chopped
              • ½ – 1 cup minced cilantro
              • Oranges, diced
              • Avocado, diced
              • Pumpkin seed parmesan
              • Optional toppings:
              • Cucumber, diced
              • Roasted red pepper, sliced (organic is best)
              • Corn (organic is best)
              • Plantain chips, crumbled

              For the Pumpkin Seed Parmesan

              • ½ c. pumpkin seeds, raw or toasted
              • 3 tsp. nutritional yeast
              • 1 ½ tsp. olive oil
              • 1/8 tsp. salt
              • ¼ tsp. (heaping) cumin

              For the Orange-Lime Dressing

              • ¼ c. lime juice
              • 1 T orange juice concentrate + 1 T water
              • 3 T olive or avocado oil
              • ½ scoop 100% pure stevia
              • ½ tsp. cumin
              • ¼ tsp. chili powder
              • 1/8 tsp. salt
              • Dash pepper
              • 1 T cilantro, minced


              1. If toasting pumpkin seeds, place in a pot over high heat and toast until you hear the seeds begin to “pop”, about 1-2 minutes.

              2. Combine all pumpkin seed parmesan ingredients in a small food processor and pulse until roughly crumbled.

              3. Combine all dressing ingredients in a jar and shake well until emulsified.

              4. Prepare all salad ingredients, combine with dressing and parmesan and serve.

              Recipe Notes

              Use about one large handful of salad greens per person.

              If serving to a crowd, combine the greens, asparagus and cilantro in a large salad bowl, but serve the remaining toppings and dressing on the side for guests to add as desired. That way if you have leftovers, the greens will remain fresh.

              Pumpkin seed parmesan will keep for at least one week if refrigerated in a jar.

              Powered by Recipage


              Like what you see? Show with a share!