Bam! 2017 is definitely stacking up with projects, and my blog is already feeling the effect. I am supremely thankful for the work, but I still feel a little guilty when I can’t get you a new recipe in the most timely fashion. 😉 Fear not! Right now, I have a healthy, flavorful snack to tide you over. This Creamy Cauliflower Pesto Dip is easy-to-make and great for parties.
Rich dips and sauces are my jam, but even I need to switch it up with a lighter snack, every so often. Using cauliflower and potatoes as the base in this dip is excellent for lightening the density, while adding in all kinds of nutrients. I added some raw cashews to soften the taste of the cauliflower, while still leaving this recipe oil-free. Yes, even the pesto!
In my garden, I have a lot of arugula growing, which has been super awesome. This cold weather (having an actual winter in Southern CA is weird) has been great for my greens! So, I used mostly arugula for my pesto, though spinach will also work well. Also, I tried something new-to-me, with my go-to pesto recipe! My friend Christian had mentioned that old school, vegan pesto recipes usually had a bit of miso paste in them. This replaced the umami that parmesan brings to traditional pesto recipes.
How ingenious is that? I can’t believe that was my first time hearing of this! That being said, I tried it out in this recipe and loved it. I will definitely be doing this from now on. Depending on your allergies/preferences, either chickpea miso or white miso paste will work!
I’d like to add that I prefer this Creamy Cauliflower Pesto Dip served hot, like right after you process the creamy base. But, you can eat it cold, as well. Just know that it will be more like a spread, which is great on your avocado toast.
With many people upping their vegan meal intake in January, finding delicious recipes that are easy-to-make is essential. Convenience is a huge plus for so many busy people, and sometimes getting ahead with pre-made helpers works perfectly. You can have a tasty, plant-based meal – like a bowl, for example – where your favorite sauce is ready to go, and cuts time (and dishes) down. Enter: the Korean Tempeh Shiitake Bowl! Made drool-worthy with the use of Saffron Road’s Korean Stir Fry Sauce.
I’m going to tell you a teeny bit about my personal life, to give you the partial inspiration for this recipe. My partner is the furthest person from a cook you will ever meet. He legitimately eats out for nearly every meal and knows only what foods he doesn’t like (eeewww.. quinoa! *eyeroll*). But, even he, can figure out how to cook rice and steam a veggie. I know this because he once bragged about it by texting me photos of this momentous occasion. It’s kind of the best.
That being said, I took what beginner cooks may or may not know into consideration while making this delectable Korean Tempeh Shiitake Bowl. Cooked Basmati rice is fragrant and simple, then a hearty green is steamed over the rice, while it’s cooking. When thinking of the protein/main portion of this dish, I looked at the variety of simmer sauces from Saffron Road Foods – 5 of which are vegan – for some ideas.
The Korean Stir Fry Sauce caught my eye and appetite and I immediately wanted to use it! Then I thought, some vegan kimchi in this mix for some tang and probiotic perks would be perfect. (Check your kimchi’s ingredients first to make sure there is no fish sauce, etc.) After all was said and cooked, this bowl was super satiating, nice to look at, and even better to eat.
A great idea for this recipe would be to use it in weekly meal prep plans! Easily cooked in bulk and stores great, too. If I wasn’t buried in cookbook shoot foods right now, I’d be all about this. #FoodPhotographerProblems Ha!
And if you’re not familiar with Saffron Road Foods, they also have these highly addictive Crunchy Chickpeas that are my go-to road trip/traveling snack. So many great flavors! You can also find more of their vegan products here, plus coupons. Now, onto the recipe!
Woohoo, the weekend is here! What better time to try a new recipe out of The Perfect Blend cookbook? This book is the latest from the exceptional Tess Masters, of The Blender Girl. Tess has 4 cookbooks under her belt, and her website it filled with tasty, plant-based recipes. Today I’ll be sharing her recipe for the Avocado Avenger from the new book, as well as giving a copy away!
This book is laid out in chapters such as “energy”, “anti-inflammatory”, “feed the soul” and more. So, you can find delicious meals just for your perfect blend. (see what I did there?) When it comes to explaining the benefits of ingredients used in each chapter, Tess is supremely thorough. We find out why parsley is great for detoxing, why chiles and pears are great for weight loss, and pomegranate powder is terrific as an anti-inflammatory.
Contradictory to what your first impression may be, this book is not filled with soft, blended creations, for those without teeth. Tess does a great job of utilizing her blender for at least one component in each recipe; making great sauces, soup bases, and dressings. Like I mentioned before, this book is absolutely stunning. The photography is eye-catching, and with fresh ingredients, the colorful dishes jump out at you.
For that reason, the Avocado Avenger triggered my appetite! Not only because I am enamored with avocados, but also because the chimichurri sauce it is covered in sounded (and is) so good. The recipe comes together very quickly, and would be great served to a group of people. I cut up leftovers into a pseudo-bruschetta for toast, which was delectable.
And now, here is the Avocado Avenger recipe from The Perfect Blend! Enter the giveaway at the end of the post, open to US residents, 18 & older.