Fresh Mediterranean Skillet [gluten-free, soy-free, vegan]

It’s been a busy week after arriving back from the Veggie Fest this weekend in Naperville. I met a ton of great folks and it was definitely a blast.

IMG_1397If I met you while I was there, be sure to drop me an email and say hello! And thank you to everyone’s support in buying all three (yes, including the third) books!

Fresh Mediterranean Skillet

Loads of flavor come together in a simple skillet that can put dinner on the table in no time. And don’t shy away from doubling the amounts; it tastes even better the next day.

Makes 6 servings

1 tablespoon Garlic Olive Oil (I used Della Terra‘s, but if you don’t have access to it, use extra garlic and basil)
1 tablespoon Basil Olive Oil
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1 (14oz) can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 (14oz) can artichoke hearts (not in oil), drained and cut into quarters
4 whole roasted red peppers, thinly sliced
1 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes or 3/4 cup sliced sundried tomatoes
1/4 cup black olives, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon capers
4 cups packed baby spinach or other greens
Juice from 1/2 lemon
Traditional Balsamic Condimento, or aged balsamic vinegar, to taste
Fresh basil, chopped

Heat both olive oils in a skillet over medium heat. Add the red onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the cannellini beans. Cook for 1 minute, stirring often.

Add the artichoke hearts, roasted red pepper, tomatoes, black olives, and capers. Cook for 1 minute. Add the greens and lemon juice. Cook just until the greens have wilted.

Bring to high heat and drizzle with the balsamic vinegar and fresh basil, cooking until fragrant.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

Picnic Potato Salad [gluten-free, soy-free, vegan]

We all have our favourite version of potato salad. There’s the creamy mayo and egg version “just like Mom use to make”. Or that smoky and warm German masterpiece with a wine vinegar tang. Then, sometimes, trusting our tastebuds, we let potatoes shine tossed with Thai red curry paste and coconut milk, or a Mediterranean version with a generous squeeze of lemon juice and robust olive oil.

potato salad (dill pickle)2

And then there’s this, with the not-so-traditional role of the acid taken over by pickle juice.

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Fresh Broccoli Salad with Apricot Vinaigrette [gluten-free, soy-free, vegan]

There are plenty of updates that need to happen, both in terms of recipes that need to be posted (dozens!), updates about events (starting to be listed here), and details about the third book (also here). But it’s about time I post a recipe.

So let’s talk broccoli salad. I love it. I love all variations of it. My favourite, in fact, is roasting broccoli in the oven with red onions, then tossing it with a mixture of tahini, lemon, and garlic. And then there’s this: a no-mayo variation of the classic with a tangy vinaigrette using summery flavors. I love this one.

broccoli salad with apricot2

And once you make that and still have a hankering for broccoli, try tossing it in an olive oil-based vinaigrette using dark balsamic and a bulb’s worth of roasted garlic cloves. Add capers, olive, artichoke hearts, roasted red peppers, and cherry tomatoes for good measure and you’re set.

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Chilled Spring Pea and Tarragon Soup [gluten-free, soy-free, vegan]

Am I too late for spring peas? I might be. But if I’m not, or you smartly froze some, then give yourself 20 minutes* and make this soup.


So the photo is a little blurry, but let’s be frank: eating, learning, laughing, and having a great time (in this case, at a Della Terra workshop) is the priority. Photo-taking? A quick snap of the smartphone gives you the right idea.

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Grilled Romaine Salad with Sundried Tomato Vinaigrette [gluten-free, soy-free, vegan]

By now, I’m sure all you lucky people who have grilling machines in their backyards are putting them into good use. I’m living vicariously through you, deeply inhaling that those char-scented wafts as I meander around wishing I had a backyard.

That aside, once in a grand while I have access to one, and then I do things like this.

Grilled Romaine with Sundried Tomato Vin

Grilled lettuce and greens might seem a little out of the ordinary if you’ve never done it before, but trust me, it’s the best way to enjoy salad in the summer. I’ve done a Grilled Caesar Salad before (in this super old post), which is what got me started with this salad-on-the-grill kick.

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Hamilton Veggie Fest – today! (Details inside)

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If you’re heading to the Hamilton Veggie Fest today, I’ll be speaking at 12:30pm on everything to do with gluten-free and vegan baking — bring your questions!

I’ll also be at a booth (find me across from The Naked Sprout) selling my books at a discounted price, and dishing out some secrets on some upcoming excitement.

And if that doesn’t interest you, well, you can at least come by and win this little diddy worth over $100:

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See you soon?


Strawberry Almond Chocolate Chip Biscotti [gluten-free, soy-free, vegan]

A few fast facts:

  • I love strawberries. Maybe it’s my favourite fruit. Niagara strawberries, of course, are amazing and finally in season.
  • I love biscotti. All sorts, all kinds, preferably without glaze. ]
  • Oddly, though, I don’t love crunchy cookies. I mean, I’ll eat them (after all, they are cookies), but I will always choose soft or chewy, first.
  • Similarly, I don’t love nuts/seeds in cookies.
  • But I love the crunchiness of biscotti and when its loaded with nuts.

strawberry chocolate chip almond biscotti

This is the first time I’ve used fresh fruit (other than applesauce) in biscotti, and, the infusion of strawberry flavor is so, so good. Cooking down the strawberries to a thick, jam-like mixture worked perfectly. I stored some in the freezer and found them a few months later (how I forgot about them is beyond me), and the strawberry flavor grew so much in intensity. It’s certainly a method I’m going to use again.

My mind’s already thinking of combinations: apricots with walnuts, blueberries with macadamias… Suggestions?

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Roasted Asparagus with Pickled Onions [gluten-free, soy-free, vegan]

You know, I’m thinking term “pickled onions” doesn’t probably sound very good. Maybe “marinated” or “tangy” would be better in this case. This is mostly because whenever I hear the word “pickled”, I immediately think of these. And while I’m sure they’re delicious…

But anyway, these pickled onions? They’re really good. And I would assume they don’t taste like pickled eggs. And, if you need excuses to use them, they’re really good on chickpea burgers, too. (What’s that? You don’t have a recipe for a fantastic chickpea burger? You sure do!)

asparagus with onions

The only change I’d make to this recipe (if I were making it right now and I had a backyard) is putting those asparguses (asparagi?) on the grill instead for some smoky goodness. Or nix the dressing in the Grilled Radishes and Asparagus with Lemon-Dill Vinaigrette and toss with these onions instead.

If you know me in real life, I often give too many options. So I can stop here, but, let me assure you: I have more. Continue reading

Springtime Strawberry Quinoa Salad [gluten-free, soy-free, vegan]

Strawberries are here.

That’s it, that’s all.

spring quinoa salad
(And while you’re at it, some Strawberry Guacamole and a Strawberry Ginger Lemonade can round out this meal. I’ll toss in some strawberry biscotti in the next couple days).

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Loaded Onion Dip [gluten-free, vegan]

Some of you might know that once a month, I lead a workshop at Della Terra Fresh Olive Oil and Balsamic Tasting Bar. If you’ve not been in, you’re missing out on (a) a super-delicious experience and (b) the best olive oils, balsamics, and specialty vinegars you’ve ever had. Really.

Tasting is believing, folks, so you have to give it a try. If you’re going to be at Niagara VegFest this weekend, you can give it a test-run there, but it won’t be long before you’ll want to head into the store.


Anyway, this isn’t a Della Terra commercial, but instead, this recipe uses one of the oils that it has to offer. Modelled after my Onion-Kale Dip, it adds some depth with a Cilantro and Roasted Onion Olive Oil and some zing via Premium White Balsamic vinegar. Serve it with cucumbers or chips or whatever you’d like. Or just eat it with a spoon. Because you will.

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