If for some reason you have never been to the blog Fork & Beans, you may be living under a rock. The blog’s creator, Cara, is incredible and super talented when it comes to transforming your favorite indulgences into gluten-free, vegan delights. So, when I heard that she was putting together her own cookbook, I just knew that it would turn out amazingly.
Lo and behold, I received a copy of Decadent Gluten-Free Vegan Baking to check out and it looks incredible! Her recipes paired with Celine Steen‘s photography equal some gorgeous recipes. Below, I’ve been given permission to share the delectable recipe for her Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake with Chocolate Graham Cracker Crust!
Fortunately for me, my dad’s birthday was earlier this week, right when I was making this cheesecake. I expedited the setting process by putting it in the freezer so that it would be ready in time for presents, which worked wonderfully. After my mom and I sang “happy birthday” to my dad, he blew out the candle and we dug in.
We are in the hottest month of Summer and here it has been humid as hell. The other day it was raining and I felt like I was back in Michigan, when my family would travel out there each August. I would stand outside during the thunderstorms, under the pouring rain, and it would still be almost 90F outside. With such greenery out there, it was a lot more enjoyable, where as here it’s just a light rain and tons of concrete.
Luckily the moisture has taken a break and today we had some nice breezes with the heat, so it wasn’t like walking into a sauna every time you went outside. This is the time of year when eating anything warm just sounds terrible – aside from grilled goodies, of course. Because of this, I have a nice, chilled salad recipe for you today! It’s perfect served as a side, maybe along with that Herbed Tofu Tomato Salad recipe from last week? Which, by the way, was a total hit! I’ve had at least five or six people make it and be very pleased with the outcome.
Anyway, this salad is made with sweet yellow and white corn, mostly for a little extra color, a creamy basil pesto aioli, fresh spinach and some red onion. Super easy to put together and is PACKED with flavor, especially after you chill the dish before serving it. If you want to make it a little healthier, add more spinach to the end product and omit some of the vegan mayo from the aioli, replacing it with plain yogurt.
Oh! I almost forgot, I have some incredibly exciting news! I’ll be a speaker at Vida Vegan Con 2015 in Austin! Eep! I’m super excited and feel very lucky to have been chosen out of the many people who applied to speak, and can’t wait until they announce the rest of the speakers closer to the end of the month. Who all is planning on going? If you’re on the fence, let me say that it was an awesome experience and you should take a look at my 1, 2, 3 part review of the 2013 conference.
After cooking non-stop for that last photography project, I have to say that my enthusiasm for making food hasn’t been the same. As far as fun recipe ideas go, my brain has been exploding with them. But, when it comes to putting some actual food in my fridge, I have been less than successful at it. Luckily, the tomato plants in my backyard have been poppin’ off and gave me a great head-start on this dish.
I was partly inspired by a plate that I had at Mohawk Bend’s Authors Worth Celebrating dinner, starring Randy Clemens. There was a spiced Caprese salad where the Mozz was actually tofu marinated in a salty brine. It tasted great, so I thought that I’d give it a go at home and see what I could come up with. Secondary inspiration came from some herbed feta cheese that I used to eat in my pre-vegan days. While the texture is a bit different, I feel like this is a good sub and my mom (who really likes cheese) even liked it!
Pair the salty, herbed tofu-cheese with ripe tomatoes, peppery baby arugula and a squeeze of fresh lemon together and you have yourself a simple, seasonal salad that makes a great side dish. Am I saying that you shouldn’t try to eat this in one sitting? Absolutely not! Go for the gold! And don’t forget to let me know how you felt about it.
Before I give you the recipe, I’d like to know how everyone’s doing! How’s your Summer, thus far? Have you done anything exciting, or are you eating anything drool-worthy? Let’s hear it!
Today, I have the pleasure of reviewing Gena Hamshaw’sChoosing Raw a beautiful cookbook with photos from the talented Hannah Kaminsky. I remember when I started my blog, back when it was only on Tumblr, and I looked up to many awesome and successful vegan bloggers. One of the first people was Gena, and really, why wouldn’t she be? She has recipes that nourish your body but that aren’t intimidating and her narrative is supportive, informative and comforting. You will find all of her greatest attributes in this book!
One of the things that I love about the layout is that it’s broken down by ease of dishes and familiarity. This is great for the vegan-curious or new vegans out there that don’t really know where to start. There is a balanced mix of cooked vs. raw recipes, and plenty of ideas for snacks (I LOVE snacks!). Gena uses wholesome ingredients and has a variety of substitutions for you to use in dishes to make them healthier but not compromise on flavor.
I ended up making two recipes from her book, the Curried Chickpea & Carrot Salad and the Mango Chia Pudding. That may seem obvious seeing as how I love curry and have made many chia puddings for this blog! Both dishes were very good and came together in no time at all. I won’t even lie when I say that I was picking recipes based on what I had on-hand, further more, I had a hard time choosing because there were a lot that used everyday ingredients! I can’t wait to try more recipes from this book and share them with friends and family.
That Curried Chickpea & Carrot Salad really hit the spot, for me, so I’m sharing the recipe with you! Pro Tip: Make a wrap using the salad with spinach, green onion and sriracha; SO GOOD. Also, because Gena and her publisher are awesome, I’m giving a copy of Choosing Raw to one lucky winner! Just go to the Rafflecopter Widget at the end of the post to enter the giveaway.
This is a vegan food blog, run by Jackie Sobon, that covers everything from indulgent desserts, to healthy dinners, and even raw recipes! I also write up restaurant reviews and am sort of a beer snob. You'll find that there is something for everyone, here!
If you would like me to contact me about photography jobs, testing out a recipe, review your restaurant or just have a question you'd like me to answer email me at: [email protected]!