Ground Cherry Cake

I’ve gotten a lot of weird things in my CSA box this summer. Mostly good weird. Watermelon radishes, kolkrabi, romanesco… the list goes on. This past week’s week veggie was this thing called ground cherries.groundcherryhusk groundcherryI think of them as a cross between a tomatillio, a cherry tomato, and a berry. They taste as weird as they sound, but in a good way…I think. Ground cherry coffee cake came up in the first results of my recipe search. I haven’t done nearly enough baking with produce this summer so I figured I’d jump on it.

It’s a pretty basic coffee cake recipe, complete with crunchy topping. There aren’t any weird ingredients besides the ground cherries. Butter is cut into the flour sugar mixture as it is in scones and biscuits. The ground cherries require no prep besides washing – you just plop them on top of the cake batter and then cover them with the crunchy topping mixture.

The cake was a big hit here on Abbott Street. We had a bunch of friends stop by as it was coming out of the oven. We all proceeded to crowd in the kitchen, eating slices from pan to paper towel to mouth.

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Original Recipe from The Kitchn

I halved it since I didn’t have a whole lot of ground cherries. This allows the cake to fit in a 8 X 4 bread pan. I used an almond milk/ apple cider vinegar mix for the buttermilk, and replaced the chopped pecan pieces with pepitas and almonds.

Enjoy! This recipe will make your house smell like snickerdoodles!

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Salad Season

I’ve mentioned it before, but one of the (many) things I love about summer is salad.

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However…. I’ve been having a problem with food boredom lately. It’s mostly my fault for doing things like consuming 4 large batches of curry style dishes over the course of 3 weeks.

In an effort to to not burn myself out on salad, I’m trying to change things up on a consistent basis.  And since I love brussel sprouts so much, I thought maybe I’d try them out for a salad base.

Boredom Curing Sprout Salad


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Makes 6 large servings

Ingredients!
~15 brussel sprouts (/ one package from Trader Joe’s)
– 1/2 head of cauliflower
– 1/2 red onion
– 1 c pea sprouts (also found these at Trader Joe’s)
– 3/4 c walnuts
– apple cider vinegar
– olive oil
– garlic powder
– 1/2 c Vegan Parm

2014-04-22 17.55.22Steps!
1. Chop and rinse brussel sprouts, pea sprouts, cauliflower, onion, walnuts. Add to a giant bowl and mix.
2. Make and add vegan parm.
3. Drizzle oil, acv and add garlic powder. Taste test and add more until your desired dressing flavor has been reached

Notes:
The chopping is the hardest part of this (as it should be- I mean it’s a freaking salad)

I didn’t include measurements for the dressing because I don’t really do salad dressing, so I don’t know what salad with dressing is supposed to taste like.

I’m sure you can use regular parm- but that recipe is both the easiest and most delicious vegan cheese I’ve ever had.

Annnnd that’s all folks.
Happy salad munching!

Picture it: a very special tea party

On Easter weekend my brilliant friend Eva hosted a tea party to celebrate spring. She went all out (& I helped!). We may need to make this an annual thing.

I ❤ construction paper.

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Flow toys + ballet flats

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Easter egg hunt!

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A guitar is required for every gathering.

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Tea station/ Food station

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And finally…. The food! We had so much food.

M&M cookie sandwich &
Cookie butter m&m blossoms (like peanut butter blossoms but better) & Maple Caramel Macadamia Blondies

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Pao De Quejo (Brazilian cheese bread, plus coconut water equals the best hangover cure EVER).


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Cheese plate/ peanut butter sriracha tofu. I have never seen Kyle enjoy tofu so much (dear Eva, I need that recipe)

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And last, but not least, the most tea party- ish food: mini sammies! Lemon curd plus blueberry/ goat cheese walnut cranberry/ tomato basil bread with hummus and veggies

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A hella fun and delicious weekend!

Have you been to any fun themed parties lately?

Quin-what?

That’s what I thought when I first heard of it. I think my friend Alyssa introduced it to me before it was cool. Honestly the initial attraction for me was that it was a grain I really liked.

Boy, was I naïve.

1. Turns out quinoa’s is not a grain, it’s a seed so it’s gluten free. While I don’t avoid gluten, I do try to avoid white/ refined carbs- and quinoa only comes as a whole seed.

2. I recently fell in love with brown rice, but when I was first introduced to quinoa I didn’t really like rice very much. I later found out that quinoa is actually more nutritious than brown rice.

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photo from Google

3. Quinoa is a complete protein, meaning it has all the essential amino acids that the body can’t make on its own, which makes it great for vegetarians! Normally to get complete protein you would need to combine foods (like rice and beans). [Source/ More ino]

4. Quinoa is related to leafy green vegetables like kale and Swiss chard (tangent: I am so excited to play around with new to me leafy greens in my farmshare this summer!).

6. It comes in seven different colors! Though according to Bob, of Bob’s Red Mill, there’s really no difference between the two.

 

So now that I’ve convinced you to eat quinoa- how the hell do you use it? Here are some of my favorites.

photo from The Kitchn

The kitchn- how to cook perfect quinoa

 

Meat Eater Approved Recipes

Vegetarian Thai Chili

Feel Good Lunch Bowl

Roasted Red Pepper and Feta Quinoa Salad

 

 

 

What are your favorite quinoa recipes?!

Perfect Scrambled Tofu

Before the original location closed in the fall, The Quiet Storm was my favorite restaurant in Pittsburgh. They specialized in vegan/vegetarian food, milkshakes, and damn good coffee. The café was perfectly eclectic, from the mismatched chairs and booths to the recycled Sriracha bottle used for hand soap in the bathroom.


photo from The Quiet Storm’s Facebook Page

The Quiet Storm is responsible for introducing me to scrambled tofu. Shortly after falling in love with it, I proclaimed to Kyle that if I could make it at home as well as they did, I would never bother with scrambled eggs again.

It wasn’t until the café closed (rest in peace) that I got around to perfecting my own recipe. After many mornings of trial and error, I finally have it down.

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Quick tips:

Tofu: any tofu should work, but I’ve found that spouted tofu is my favorite. It’s a little firmer and has a bit more protein.

Spices: Don’t skip the turmeric! I tried to make it without the turmeric in the beginning (even though every recipe I consulted used it) and it just wasn’t the same.

 

Perfect Quiet Storm Style Scrambled Tofu

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Ingredients:

  • ~4 oz tofu (I use about 1/2 tub of Trader Joe’s sprouted tofu)
  • Olive oil
  • 2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • a few shakes of garlic salt
  • Sriracha
  • Optional: frozen corn, Mmm sauce, tortilla or toast for serving

Method:

1. Drain the tofu and wrap it in some paper towels. Sit something heavy on top of it to squeeze the water out (I use cast iron pans). Let it drain for 10 minutes or so.

Note: This is less time than I usually press tofu, since this cooking method will remove some more of the excess water

I typically press more than one serving at a time. Tofu stays fresh for a few days after you open it.

2. Heat up your pan and drizzle it with oil. When the oil moves around easily it’s time to add the tofu.

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3. Crumble the tofu over the pan. Smaller pieces = more surface area = better flavored tofu.

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4. Toss the tofu around in the pan until the pieces are coated in oil, then add the spices. Add the frozen corn now, if desired. Sauté tofu and optional corn until tofu has just started to brown.

5. Add Sriracha and mmm sauce as desired! I’ve been adding Mama Pea’s mmm sauce to everything lately and it balances out the heat of the Sriracha pretty nicely.

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And there you have it. If you like tofu and have never tried it this way, you need to give it a shot 🙂 And let me know how it goes!

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Talk to us!

Have you ever tried scrambled tofu?

Homemade Hostess Cake

Yes, you read that right.

The weekend before last I promised to bring a cake to a friend’s birthday (not out of the ordinary, but relevant). Later that week, I came across a recipe for a beautiful chocolate cake inspired by those Hostess cupcakes.

I got up relatively early on Saturday to make the cake itself (it had to be completely cooled before I could add the marshmallow filling).

Confession: part of the reason I was excited to make this recipe was because I wanted to use my bundt pan (which is older than me).

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Even unfrosted it was looking pretty elegant.

Fast forward a few hours later to me making a mess a complete mess in the kitchen. Though in my defense there was filling, frosting, and icing to make.

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I recently switched to using vanilla beans in my baking instead of (usually imitation) vanilla extract. GAME CHANGER.

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Middle of cake removed/ Marshmallow added.

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Cake replaced! Frosting and icing complete!

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I may have added too much liquid to the chocolate frosting- but I kind of love the drippy effect it makes (even if it’s a little less hostess looking).

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The birthday girl cutting her cake! Happy Birthday Caroline!

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Annnnd a look at the inside! How ugly. It tasted as good as the outside looked, which is all that really matters 🙂

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Click here to get the recipe.

I made the following substitutions:

  • Flax eggs (for eggs)
  • Almond milk + vinegar (for buttermilk)
  • Coconut oil (for canola oil)
  • A cup of French pressed coffee (for instant coffee)
  • Earth balance (for butter)
  • Soy creamer (for whole milk)
  • Cacao nibs (for bittersweet chocolate)

 

Talk to us!

Have you cooked up anything delicious lately?!