A Spiced Up Hallow’s Eve

20131030-201457.jpg

Every Halloween week I always bake up a batch of soul cakes. Soul cakes are a medieval tradition, where you leave the scone like treats out for the souls to feed them, keep them happy and leave your home alone. This year I changed them up a bit I created vegan pumpkin soul cakes…yum um! To make the halloween treats even better I paired the cakes with a mug of warm spiced cider. Happy Halloween!!!

RECIPE: Spiced Apple Cider

Makes one mug full

11/2 cups apple cider
3 fingers of spiced rum
1 cinnamon stick
1 slice of orange

Combine all ingredients in a small sauce pan, bring to a simmer, allow to simmer for 3 minutes, pour into mug experience fall bliss

meatless monday: lentils and roasted squash

a bowl full of fall

a bowl full of fall

i received a present of an acorn squash and a butternut squash (yay for all the little farmers i know!) how to turn them into a yummy dinner was the next question. with the cooler weather approaching, fire building and mugs of spiced apple cider happening, a curried squash seemed to fit the bill. to make the squash a bit easier to handle i decided to roast them. once they were soft enough to cut up i tossed them in to a red curry sauce that had lentils, carrots, potatoes and onions. lets just say it tasted like fall!

 

RECIPE: HOW TO ROAST SQUASH

squash it!

squash it!

roasting squash is simply and easy. to cut an acorn or butternut squash in half cut off the stem ends, stand it on the flattened side, and gently rock your knife back and forth. once the squashes are cut in half, lightly brush on olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt and cracked pepper. roast the squash for 1 hour at 350. the squash should be so tender that you can scoop them out of their pealing. eat as is or toss them into a soup, pasta, or salad!

 

meatless monday: black bean and potato tacos

IMG_0775

yes i know i’ve posted about these before but i do love them.  this night i also had over elise, a guacamole expert to jazz up the dish with her homemade spicy guacness. but the thing that turned out to be the most pleasant surprise of the meal was a last-minute salad i threw together.  my manager at work is quite the little farmer and has been bringing my loads of veggies from her garden. in a bag for me the other day were 4 giant cucumbers.  what to do with them i asked?!  why not a cucumber salad to go with our tacos, rice and guacamole.  i sliced up the cucumbers tossed in plenty of fresh garlic and sprinkled on dill that was all marinated in red wine vinegar…….all i have to say is YUM!

RECIPE:  DILL CUCUMBER SALAD

1 large cucumber sliced

1 TBSP dill

2 cloves fresh garlic minced

1/4 cup red wine vinegar

*combine all ingredients, serve right away or make 24 hours before hand for all the veggies to marinate in the vinegar in dill, either way you’ll find it delicious

SGF Mobile Food Park Grand Opening

IMG_0778

IMG_0781

if you pay attention to anything about food trends you know that right now food trucks are where it’s at. springfield in the last couple of years has gone from the token handful to one on almost on every corner. someone had a wonderful idea to create a park for all these trucks, thus the hungry individual does not have to chase them around via facebook status updates and can find them at a centralized location. friday night was the official grand opening of the SGF Mobile Food Park, all trucks were going to be in attendance with music, games, the works.

IMG_0779

my goal was to conquer the food trucks! i wanted to sample 1 thing from each of the trucks. i brought with me a trusted foodie friend, cassie, who also is vegan. she was going to go for the vegetarian dishes i would hit up the meats and we’d be in food bliss. the plan of course did not follow through do to the fact we ate all the yumminess of the first food truck filling us up to the brim! we selected the wheelhouse, a thai-mex streetfare cuisine, that will turn any dish into vegan fare. cassie went with the jumbo veggie burrito and i got the thai-peanut chicken tacos that came with chips and a cabbage dish. all i have to say is…….i’m still thinking about these tacos!

the wheelhouse

the wheelhouse

cassie in burrito bliss

cassie in burrito bliss

my tacos

my tacos

 

it was wonderful to see the park packed with people, trucks were running out of food but everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves. my quest is still in action, i will get bbq from smokin bob’s, i will have a fresh made juice from the big red juice truck, how can i pass up a Hawaiian wrap from the speedy’s cowabunga, the okra at hers cookin was calling my name and i’m sorry but how can you not eat a meatpie that comes from a double decker bus….london calling yes yes you are!

the tiki head design sold me

the tiki head design sold me

meatless monday: a harvest moon feast

don't tell them but i feed them leftovers

don’t tell them but i feed them leftovers

i lured over some friends for a meatless monday fall feast. what i didn’t tell them was that i was cleaning my freezer out and feeding them leftovers from last year’s round of fall cooking. in the back of the freezer was a large container of apple-butternut squash soup and a large ball of pumpkin gnocchi dough. thus was born a new soup. thawed out the apple-butternut squash soup made up the gnocchi to toss into it and added sweet potatoes, peppers, plenty of curry and ground red pepper. what ended up in the bowl was a spicy, sweet taste of fall. along with it was my harvest salad and bread toasted with horseradish and chives. pass the pumpkin beer and toast fall!

the gang was none the wiser

the gang was none the wiser

 

RECIPE: HARVEST SALAD

SERVES 6

ING

1 head of leaf lettuce

1/2 apple sliced

1/2 cup sliced red onion

1/4 cup pumpkin seeds

1 tsp dill

1 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp black pepper

2 tbsp lemon juice

1 tbsp olive oil

*chop up lettuce, toss in red onion, apple and pumpkin seeds. in a separate bowl mix together lemon juice, olive oil, black pepper, dill and garlic powder. when ready to serve toss salad with dressing.

 

Roasted Pumpkin Fondue

Tis the season for pumpkin eating! We’re making this again tonight and I just wanted to share the recipe again for those who missed it last year. By the way, pumpkin fondue is fondue-licous.

Hearty Eaters

20121230-163057.jpg

My good friend Annie tipped me off that there was a roasted pumpkin fondue recipe in the holiday special issue of Gourmet magazine. I bought it right away because how could I not make a pumpkin fondue?

I did change their recipe some. They wanted you to layer the bread inside, but I just couldn’t do that. It would be more like a pudding than a fondue and although I like my puddings I’m a dunker when it comes to fondue.

To start, preheat your oven to 450.

As in almost any real pumpkin recipe, first you gotta scrape out that pumpkin.

20121230-163527.jpg

I halved their recipe since there are just two of us. This meant I used a pie pumpkin instead of a 7 pound pumpkin.

Season the inside of the pumpkin with a 1/4 teaspoon of salt. I used garlic salt, but either will work.

In a small bowl…

View original post 225 more words

meatless monday: curry-pineapple fried rice with tofu

IMG_1092

my sis taught me well when it came to cooking up pineapple fried rice. that i would say is hands down our favorite thing to order when we treat ourselves to thai food. steph started making it at home a few years ago and shared some of her tricks with me, such as the best fried rice comes from leftover rice. essentials in the fried rice are of course pineapple, cashews, and onions. i like to do up a crispy tofu to toss in and lately i’ve been adding a yellow curry paste to make it sweet and spicy. to go along with it i baked up so veggie egg rolls. and here’s my hint for cooking up asian delicacies……purchase yourself some asian dish ware at your local asian market, putting your asian meals on them just makes them so much more yummy!