Delicious Chewy Granola Bars (gluten free and vegan)

10 Dec

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I have made many a granola bar in my life. Some of them have been too crumbly, some of them have tasted really healthy but not been that delicious, but none of them have been quite as delicious and held together quite as well as these ones. I am pretty delighted to have finally stumbled upon the right combination.

I was on a quest to make the perfect granola bar, because these are a gift for one of my favorite people in the world and I wanted her to really really like them. They are en route, so keep your fingers crossed.

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I found some major inspiration and guidance for these bars from the amazing blog theKitchn and then muddled around to make the rest. I made two batches of these, one with dark chocolate on top and one without. Even though the dark chocolate one would seem like the natural winner given how chocolate obsessed I am, I actually couldn’t decide they are both equally charming.

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Vegan Sweet Wine Biscuits with Sesame

10 Dec

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I am definitely not a cookie snob. I love a good old fashioned simple chocolate chip cookie. But sometimes times call for a more adult cookie. This cookie fits that bill. These are delicious and not too sweet, with an intriguing purple hue, subtle wine flavor and irresistible sesame crunch. I served these at a professional gathering alongside clementines, warm cider, goat cheese, and crackers and they added a unique elegance to the whole event.

This recipe is from Vegan Cookies Invade your Cookie Jar by Moskowitz and Romero, a must-read for cookie lovers vegan and non-vegan alike.

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Baked Sweet Potato Pear Latkes (Gluten free and dairy free)

9 Dec

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I love latkes. I don’t love frying them, it smells up the house, it takes forever, and its not very good for you. This Hanukkah I was thrilled to stumble upon this combination that produces latkes that, in my opinion, are even better than their fried counterparts. Plus I swapped out high glycemic russet potatoes for nutrient-rich sweet potatoes for a healthier potato pancake. The pear, garlic, and onion produce a sweet pancake with a kick. Irresistible served warm with applesauce.

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Butternut Squash Soup (Dairy Free and Gluten Free)

9 Dec

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Can you tell I love squash? This is a recipe that I grew up eating. My mom would whip this up in the fall and I remember few things being as comforting and soothing. Warm, creamy, and just a little sweet this was one of my favorite soups. Nowadays I will make a huge batch, eat it for breakfast and dinner and freeze the leftovers. This keeps well frozen and can be warmed up and served with some salad for a delicious dinner in a pinch.

This is a relatively easy soup to make, once you peel and chop the butternut squash (if anyone has any tips about doing this in a quick or easy way, I would love to hear them) especially if you have an immersion blender.

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Butternut Squash Risotto (Vegan and Gluten Free)

1 Dec

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It has been rainy and grey this past week. I have been searching for a comforting rainy day meal to feed a crowd of friends and stumbled upon a recipe for Butternut Squash Risotto on one of my favorite blogs, Frugal Feeding. I adapted the recipe by adjusting the amounts, roasting the butternut squash, omitting the wine (since I am avoiding alcohol for the Candida Diet), and making it dairy free. The thing I love about this recipe is that it is bursting with flavor and incredibly satisfying. Using butternut squash puree adds a dairy-free creaminess as well as a beautiful orange color. I served this with some crusty GF bread, a rotisserrie chicken, and a simple arugula lemon salad. It was a huge hit.

Risotto is labor intensive in that you can’t really leave it, but I find the process of stirring and adding stock to be quite meditative and peaceful in the right mood.

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Samoas (Vegan and Gluten-Free)

1 Dec

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Samoas have always been and will always be my favorite girl scout cookie. Who can resist their chewy, crunchy texture and chocolatey coconut goodness? Thats why I was DELIGHTED when I came across a recipe for them in the Vegan Cookies Invade your Cookie Jar book (a must for all vegan or dairy free cookers). I adjusted their excellent recipe to make it gluten free as well as tweaked a few things and toned down the amount of sugar. With dark chocolate, shredded coconut, and coconut oil these cookies are surprisingly healthy (as far as cookies go) but they certainly don’t taste like it. I left a plate of these out when we had friends over and they were all gone in about 5 minutes flat. In my opinion they are best cold from the fridge. Enjoy!

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Cajun Catfish with collards and black eyed peas

26 Nov

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I found the inspiration for this recipe in a real simple magazine and it was the perfect cold night meal to savor while watching a movie with a friend. It is pretty spicy, but varied enough that its not overwhelming. Catfish is a type of fish I have been trying to eat more of because it is one of the fishes recommended for being particularly sustainable and safe to eat. It took about 30 minutes start to finish, so while it takes some planning to pick up catfish, it is an easy weeknight meal.

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