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I am not exactly sure why I am posting this recipe when I consider that I ripped it from a page of O Magazine while in a doctor’s waiting room and it’s all over the internet anyways. However, when I consider how much I actually enjoyed both eating the finished product and the way I felt after, it is totes obvious. These things are so weird, yet so good! You feel like you’ve just eaten power pellets.

I got most of the ingredients from the bulk section of my hippie grocery store, but they can be procured all over the internet. Warning: not cheap. Just so you know.

I don’t have a dehydrator, so I just stuck a loaded baking sheet in my oven on very low heat overnight.

EQUIPMENT YOU WILL NEED:
A spice grinder, nut grinder or appropriated coffee grinder
A silicone baking mat or parchment paper
The usual suspects: bowl, fork, spoon, measuring accoutrements

INGREDIENTS:
1 C. chia seeds, finely ground
1/2 C. pecan or macadamia nuts, finely ground
1/2 C. dried mulberries
1/2 C. mesquite powder
1/4 C maca root powder
1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
Coconut butter and maple syrup for eating

THE RECIPE:
Mix ingredients in a bowl. Add 2 C. water and blend with a fork. Form rounds on a baking tray and put in an oven set to warm over night — no more than 115F — or dehydrate at 115F for 7 hours. Peel them off the tray and put on a plate; serve with the coconut butter & syrup.

a.k.a. Fassüliah K’dra, these are soft and delicately savory saffron cannellini beans. This is a very simple recipe and the result appears quite plain, but it is in fact amazingly subtle and delicious. The white pepper adds just the right amount of spice. You can eat this plain in a bowl as you would any old bean stew, or add toppings to it like chopped tomato or yogurt or whatever strikes your fancy, or serve alongside a bunch of other salads and tasty bits.

Adapted from Mediterranean Street Food by Anissa Helou. Serves 6.

2 1/2 C. dried cannellini beans, soaked 8 hrs. or quick soaked for at least 3 in boiling water
A nice fat pinch of saffron
10 C. water
5 Tbsp. olive oil
3 medium or 2 large white onions, halved or quartered and sliced very thin (a mandoline is good for this)
1/4 C. flat-leaf parsley, minced
1 tsp. white pepper
Salt to taste

Put the drained beans and the water into a soup pot. Add the saffron, crushing it with your fingers first. Bring to a boil, add the oil, and simmer, covered, for 30 minutes.

If pressure cooking, heat at maximum pressure for 6 minutes and then quick release; add the ingredients listed below and pressurize again for the same amount of time.

Stir in onions, parsley, and pepper, and cook for another 30 minutes or until beans are tender, stirring occasionally. Add salt to taste. You can adjust the consistency by cooking longer or adding more water.

Happy Thanksgiving.

1 squash (acorn/kabocha/butternut etc.)
Olive oil
Fresh ground pepper

3 Tbsp. white miso
3 Tbsp. rice vinegar
1 Tbsp. maple syrup/agave/brown rice syrup etc., more or less to taste
1 Tbsp. dry yellow mustard

Heat oven to 375F. Halve the squash and scrape the seed cavity clean. Pour a small amount of oil into each cavity and use it to baste the entire cut surface. Dust with pepper and place cut-side-down on a baking sheet. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes or so, about the amount of time it takes you to repot a couple of plants or listen to 1/2 of an LP, until the squash is relatively tender.

Whisk the remaining ingredients together until smooth. Remove squash from oven, flip, and baste the cut surface with the sauce. Return to oven for another 10 minutes or until squash is soft and the surface is toasty brown and caramelized.

Eat the squash with a spoon straight from the baking dish like an uncivilized human, or slice and serve on plates in front of company.

Everybody loves horchata! Not everybody loves chia pudding, though — not YET, anyways, but they will. Chia seeds are like the thing these days. You can easily do a cheater’s version of this recipe with boxed horchata in a pinch.

This takes time! 8 hrs. for horchata, 8 hrs. for pudding. (It’s a whole bunch of passive action, hanging around waiting for water to be absorbed.) So if you want pudding in your evening meal, start the horchata soaking the night before, finish it up the next morning, and set the pudding in the fridge for the day. You might not know what’s for dinner, but you will definitely know what’s for dessert.
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Super freaking good.  If you don’t have a double boiler, use a metal bowl on top of a saucepan (and have hot pads ready to handle it). Don’t know what teff is? Go ahead, GTS.

You’ll need:
1 cup teff (whole grains, not flour)
1/2 cup water
1 tsp. salt
4 cups water, milk, or water and milk

You’ll do:
In a small bowl, combine teff, 1/2 cup water, and salt.

Bring the 4 cups liquid mixture to a boil in the top of a double boiler.  (You can speed this process by bringing your water to a boil in an electric kettle first.)  Gradually stir in the teff mixture.  Return to a boil, continually stirring, for 3-5 minutes.  Lower heat and cover; cook for 25-30 minutes and stir frequently.  It gets thick.

If desired, add 1/2 cup nutritional yeast in the last 15 minutes of cooking.  Or 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, whatever.

Spoon into bowls for immediate eating or pour into a lightly oiled cake tin and chill.  Cut the chilled polenta cake into wedges and eat cold, heat up, or grill over a hot grill pan.

Sauerkraut

So.  Do you like sauerkraut?  I mean — have you given homemade sauerkraut a chance in your adult life?

I was reintroduced to the stuff when I lived with a roommate in Boston who was, according to a friend, “like a Level 10 vegan.”  Vegan roommate, an excellent cook, used to pack red cabbage in jars and let them ferment in a cabinet, adding the finished product to sandwiches and rice dinners and other things.  It was good sauerkraut, not creepy like the unmonitored vats at a hot dog stand, and I could see that it was very easy to make.  (It is easy on the level of doing your own laundry.)

Not long after I found a terrific fanzine called Wild Fermentation that teaches one how to make their own sauerkraut.  It also teaches one how to make cheese, or tempeh, or tej or yogurt or pickles and other fermented foods.  It has since been turned into a book but you can still find the stunningly simple recipe for sauerkraut here. Thank you, Sandor Ellix Katz, a.k.a. Sandor Kraut, for making your passion so accessible to us.

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Today was Mariquita Farms Mystery Box day, and today’s selection included a bag of Yukon Gold potatoes and basil and little bitty cucumbers and Pimiento de Padron peppers, among other things.  A friend was coming over for dinner, so I decided to put a little something together.  But what?

I wanted to use that basil ASAP.  I don’t buy basil, since it usually comes in huge quantities that languish in my crisper long after I use what I need, and this bunch was too good to go to waste.  And the potatoes — am I really in the mood for potatoes?  Somehow my brains came up with the terrific idea of a cold potato salad with basil pesto called I Can’t Believe It’s Not Gnocchi.  Because, like, you know, gnocchi are made with potatoes?  And this is just like gnocchi, only way simpler and, um, not like gnocchi at all?  Well, it’s still really good.  I bet Fabio would endorse it.

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… a.k.a. “Stone Cold Breakfast”

NEEDED:
1 cups water
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup flax seeds
Traveling container, such as tupperware
A coffee grinder

THE NIGHT BEFORE:
Grind the flax seeds in the coffee grinder. Combine oats, flax, and water in container. Stir or seal ‘n’ shake. Set on countertop.

THE MORNING AFTER:
Add milky substance and reseal. Put container in your bag and leave the house. Don’t forget to bring a spoon!

Serves 1

Here’s a simple curry I made last week with veggies languishing in the fridge, waiting their due. One thing that’s been great about following South Asian recipes by-the-book is that it’s given me confidence in spicing my own creations without reference.

YOU WILL NEED:
1 eggplant
1 red bell pepper
1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes
1 cup puréed tomato (I puréed chopped canned ones)
1 onion, sliced into half-circles
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. ground cumin (or toasted & ground seeds)
1 tsp. turmeric
1/2 tsp. ground cardamom
1 cup plain yogurt
Oil
Salt

Slice the eggplant in half lengthwise and chop into 1/2″ thick half-rounds. Dust with salt and set aside in a bowl. Core the pepper, remove the spongy membrane, and slice the flesh into matchsticks.

Heat a grill pan. Grill the eggplant slices until they’re marked on both sides, then set aside. While you do this, heat the oil in a large pan and fry the onions and garlic over a medium flame. Stir in the spices. Add the whole tomatoes, lower heat, and cover. Monitor the pan so things don’t burn. In about 5 minutes, the tomatoes will be plump and soft: pop them with the back of a spoon.

Add the grilled eggplant, pepper, and puréed tomato and let simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the yogurt and let simmer 5 more minutes or until the vegetables are desiccated and tender.

Serve hot with rice or pan-fried chapatis and lemonade.

Serves 2-4

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