Spring

Entrée, Gluten Free, Spring, Summer

ANCHO CHILE MUSHROOM TACOS

Ancho Chili Mushroom Tacos . Portobellos . Sprouted Kitchen

I came across this quote from Rob Bell via my friend Stacy's blog :

You and I were raised in a modern world that taught us how to work hard and be productive and show up on time and give it our best...
We learned lots of very valuable skills, but we weren't taught how to be here, how to be fully present in the moment, how to not be distracted or stressed or worried or anxious, but just be here, and nowhere else - wide awake to the infinite depth and dimension of this exact moment.

 As someone whose work and personal life come with an extreme amount of overlap, I have a tough time enjoying things for what they are. My husband is also my work and parenting partner. I feed my family, but testing and writing recipes is also my job. When I am with the kids, I feel like I should be working on something - often irritated because I know I have to hustle for my own living. Or if I am working, I feel like I am missing moments with my kids. I don't know any of us come equip with how to just be here - it's cultural, often generational, the extent of which indicative of ones' personality.  When I feel the most at ease, is when I am simply doing whatever it is I need to be doing. If it is working,  then I just live in that time, cooking or writing, going through the motions of something I understand how to do, being grateful that I have flexibility and generally enjoy what I am doing. Or if I'm corraling my kids at a park or building block towers, that I may see the "depth of that exact moment". How do you practice that in your own life? I have to make those decisions consciously, does it ever become a habit? Asking for a friend ;) 

I figured I would make obligatory tacos this Saturday for Cinco de Mayo. Maybe we'll have some friends come over, do bean and cheese burritos for the kids, make margaritas with fresh grapefruit juice. Having people over, sitting around a table in the backyard, may be the easiest place for me to just be in the moment. It is the place where my mind does not dart around between which bills I need to pay or how dusty the open shelving is or how I may grow my brand or researching Kindergarten options. Even if we can't be savoring every little thing, our angst pulling our brains to other places, I think there is always at least one place that it feels easy to just be there. For me, that is the table. Hope you can name where that is for you, and be in it or doing it, soon. I've found that recognizing it is the biggest step forward. 

Ancho Chili Mushroom Tacos . Roasted Portobellos . Sprouted Kitchen

ANCHO CHILE MUSHROOM TACOS

Serves 2

I assume about 1 larger portobello per person, once sliced, it gives you two full tacos with all the garnishes. Multiply as needed for however many you are serving. If you do not stock these spices, your favorite taco seasoning is fine, just be mindful if it includes salt or not.

The Tacos

  • 2 large or 3 medium portobello mushrooms
  • 1 Tbsp. avocado oil
  • 2 tsp. maple syrup
  • 1 Tbsp. orange juice (apple cider vinegar will do)
  • 1/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp. ancho chile powder

  • 4 corn tortillas, warmed 

The Garnish

  • pickled onions
  • fresh lime
  • avocado
  • cilantro
  • shredded cabbage, optional
  • queso fresco (or soft goats cheese)

Directions

Stem the mushrooms. In a small bowl, combine the oil, maple, salt, cumin and ancho chile powder. Arrange the mushrooms on parchment and brush the spice mixture on both sides of the mushroom. This can be prepped a few hours in advance.

Preheat the oven to 375'. Roast the mushrooms for about 20 minutes or until they are browned and collapsed down (they should look wet and shrink in size). If the weather permits, you can grill the mushrooms over medium heat for 6 minutes on each side (or until they collapse a bit).

When cool to the touch, cut the mushrooms into slices on a diagonal. Arrange the tacos with some smashed avocado (lightly salted), a pile of mushrooms, pickled onions, cilantro, shredded cabbage (if using), cheese and a squeeze of fresh lime. Enjoy. 

Ancho Chili Mushroom Tacos . Sprouted Kitchen


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Entrée, Gluten Free, Salad, Spring, Summer

THAI-ISH CAULIFLOWER RICE SALAD

Mangoe . Thai(ish) Cauliflower Rice Salad . Sprouted Kitchen

I saw this recipe on pinterest recently and given I (ironically, it is a long list) had all of these ingredients, I could not stop thinking about it. I strayed really far from the original, but am happy with where I ended up. I could eat this all day long. I am aware it is not a truly authentic Thai list of ingredients, but it tastes delicious at the end so I'm not concerned. I don't like rambling on to sell you a recipe so instead, here are a few podcasts I listened to this past week that I really enjoyed. Not sure how you listen to podcasts, I trust you can search for them. 

Oprah Super Soul Conversations : Brene Brown and Shonda Rhimes
The Liturgists : Body Image
How I Built This : Howard Schultz/Starbucks and Gary Hirshberg/Stonyfield Yogurt

Chopped Vegis . Thai(ish) Cauliflower Rice Salad . Sprouted Kitchen

THAI-ISH CAULIFLOWER RICE SALAD

Serves 4-6

Recipe inspired by The Awesome Green

It is a long list of ingredients, and quite a bit of chopping, but worth the time. I add some grilled chicken or tofu, both of which I marinate in sriracha, sesame oil and a bit of tamari. Salmon would be AMAZING here. Any leftovers will keep for a few days, covered in the fridge.

The Salad

  • 1 bell pepper, small dice
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and diced
  • 1/2 a red onion, small dice
  • 2 Persian cucumbers, small dice
  • 1/2 a small head of purple cabbage, finely shredded
  • 1 mango (or 2 ataulfo mangos, preferable if you can find them), small dice
  • 1 small bunch cilantro
  • 1 small bunch mint
  • 1 large lime
  • sea salt and pepper

  • nub of coconut oil
  • 1 medium head of cauliflower, riced (about 1 1/2 cups prepared)
  • 1/2 cup canned coconut milk
  • 2 avocados, for garnish
  • toasted cashews, for garnish

Peanut Sauce

  • 1/2 cup creamy, salted peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • juice of two large limes
  • 2 inch nub of ginger, grated
  • 1 clove of garlic, grated
  • dash of fish sauce, optional
  • 1 Tbsp. honey or agave nectar
  • 2 tsp. tamari or soy sauce
  • sea salt and pepper

Recipe Instructions

Put all the prepared produce in a large mixing bowl. Chop the cilantro and mint, add that too. Squeeze the lime over everything, add a pinch of salt and pepper and toss everything to mix. Set aside, room temperature or in the fridge.

Heat the coconut oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Add the riced cauliflower, pinch of salt and pepper and saute until it begins to soften. Add the coconut milk and saute another 2-3 minutes until softened. Set aside to cool down.

Which the cauliflower cools, make your sauce, In a bowl, combine the peanut butter, water, rice vinegar, juice of both limes, grated ginger, garlic, fish sauce if using, honey or agave and tamari. Add a pinch of salt and pepper and whisk everything together until smooth. Taste for seasoning, if you like some heat, add a dash of sriracha or cayenne. Add water or lime juice to thin if needed. Keep it mind it will firm up in the fridge.

Add the cooled cauliflower to the bowl of vegetables and toss everything together. Season with salt and pepper as needed. Serve the salad with the peanut sauce, avocado and toasted cashews on top.

Thai(ish) Cauliflower Rice Salad . Sprouted Kitchen


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Breakfast, Dessert, Spring

STRAWBERRY + RHUBARB YOGURT CAKE

My oven currently smells like it's burning off oil that had dripped to the bottom at some point. I should clean it; it really does interrupt the beautiful waft that comes from a springy cake in the oven. I have a handful of prospective projects I am back and forth about between two email addresses that while made with good intentions to keep personal and work separate, have done no such thing. There are threads regarding a potential cookbook, a recipe and article assignment about avocados, a menu card for our fundraiser dinner and open items to finish filing our taxes. Woven in between are emails about Curran's first (overdue apparently, oops) dentist appointment, follow up on invoices and the receipt for that weird oversized shirt I ordered from Nordstrom that I keep there to remind myself to return it some night after the kids are down. I never feel like doing that once the kids are down... but I also don't like going to the mall with two spirited toddlers so you may find me in a terribly unflattering oversized shirt. Anyway. I get stuck on writing here because the balls I am trying to keep in the air follow no apparent rhyme or reason or lessons learned. It feels like a simple yogurt cake on top of the stove is a constant to a life that seems to be buzzing by faster than I can keep up with. The fruit shrinks in after some time in the oven, and because fruit has a lot of water in it, the result is almost custardy which I don't mind at all once it cools. The jammy fruit and cake batter are almost tough to distinguish. It works for breakfast or an incentive for a moderately potty trained little boy or something to bring along on a date with my nieces. There is no frosting or chocolate or decadence really, it's an everyday sort of cake and the only kind that feels right to make around here lately. 

STRAWBERRY + RHUBARB YOGURT CAKE // one 8" cake
Recipe adapted from Sarah Waldmans Feeding a Family

I swapped in half strawberries for Sarah's exclusively rhubarb cake because I love the combination and my wee people are fans. I also cut down on the sugar slightly from her suggestion and found it to be plenty sweet. If you don't stock spelt flour, completely all purpose is fine, the texture would probably be better, I just like to sneak some whole grains in there.
You can make this dairy free by replacing the yogurt for a plant based yogurt and the butter for a scant 1/2 cup of coconut oil. It's a pretty forgiving cake. 

3/4 cup full fat yogurt
2 eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup/1 stick unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbsp. grated gingerroot (or twice as much crystallized ginger pieces)
1 cup unbleached all purpose flour
3/4 cup spelt flour (or more unbleached all purpose)
1 cup muscavado or brown sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1 cup 1" diced rhubarb
1 cup diced strawberries

turbinado sugar, for finishing
creme fraiche, yogurt or ice cream, for serving

Preheat the oven to 350' and grease an 8" pan (square, springform, cakepan etc.).

In one mixing bowl, whisk together the yogurt, eggs, butter, vanilla and ginger. Set aside. 
In another mixing bowl, combine the flours, sugar, salt, baking soda and stir to mix. Mix the fruit into the dry mix (this helps to keep the fruit from sinking) then gently combine the wet and dry mix together. 
Pour the mix into your prepared pan and generously sprinkle the top with turbinado sugar.
Bake on the middle rack for around 45-50 minutes until the cake is browned on top and a toothpick test shows that the center is cooked through.
Remove to cool so the cake sets. Serve with creme fraiche, yogurt or ice cream.
Cake will keep covered on the counter for two days, beyond that, store it in the fridge as it has a lot of moisture to it. 



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