Have a vegan attending your Thanksgiving table? These Date Nut Truffles will not only solve your vegan dessert dilemma, but all of your guests and you will love them. They’re also gluten free…for those other guests. I think they’ll make an appearance throughout the holidays in my home.
1 cup walnuts
1/2 cup shelled pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup macadamia nuts
1 1/4 cups unsweetened shredded coconut, 1/4 cup set aside
2 cups pitted dates
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
If you like your nuts a little toasty, place the walnuts and pumpkin seeds in an oven at 350 degrees for 7-10 minutes. Let cool, then place walnuts, pumpkin seeds, macadamia nuts, and 1 cup of shredded coconut in a food processor bowl. Pulse until finely crumbed.
Add dates, coconut oil, salt and vanilla extract, and pulse again until it’s a moistened consistency.
Place remaining shredded coconut and cocoa powder in a bowl. Roll about a tablespoon size into a ball and then roll it in the coconut-cocoa mixture until evenly coated. Place truffles on a tray with wax or parchment paper and place in the freezer for at least 30 minutes.
Take out about 10 minutes before serving. Makes about 20 truffles.
If you feel like skipping the booze and mint milkshakes this year, but still want to give a nod to St. Patrick’s Day, why not make a Green Lemonade! This continues to be my favorite drink. It’s super healthy, filling, thirst quenching and so tasty, and you don’t need a messy juicer to make it!
Here is the original recipe, and I’ve made some updates to the recipe below.
Photo by Kevin Pazmino www.pazminophotography.com
8-12 oz Water or Coconut Water
1 small-medium Apple, peeled and chopped
1 chunk (about 1/2″) Ginger
Juice of 1/2 Lemon
Big bunch of Spinach
About 1/2 cup frozen Pineapple (Trader Joe’s sells frozen chunks)
You can add cucumber, celery, substitute kale, chard, collard greens or romaine lettuce. Hell, throw in some unsweetened coconut, half a banana and make it a smoothie. I’m getting ahead of myself…
Grab your preferred instrument for blending (I used my beloved immersion blender), and rev her up! I love spinach because it pulverizes quite easily. The tougher greens make it more chunky.
If you are equally intimidated by the hard, funny shaped gourds, know that you’re not alone. I didn’t grow up eating or decorating squash or pumpkin, but having lived in the US for over 30 years now, I decided to embrace them as treats and decor, and even tried my hand at my own recipe, featuring an easy to cut one, delicata squash.
I incorporated black beans into my squash stuffing for the protein, and Brussels sprouts and mushrooms for the vegetables. You can certainly customize to your liking. I made them at my boyfriend’s place, and totally forgot to bring over onion, which I think would have deepened the flavors. Three cloves of garlic definitely helped. I also feel it was missing a fresh element. In the future, I may add fresh green onions as garnish, or incorporate a fresh herb into the vegetable sauté, like thyme, and/or make some thyme or green onion infused sour cream to dollop on top. But here’s what I did:
Two delicata squash, halved and de-seeded
1 onion, chopped
2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 can black beans (I like to use Eden beans, because they are cooked with Kombu, for added nutrition)
About 10 oz Shaved Brussels Sprouts (I used a package of shaved sprouts from Trader Joe’s)
About 8-10 Mushrooms, chopped (I used cremini)
1 slice cheddar cheese, sliced into thin pieces and handful shaved Parmeggiano Regiano (Or cheese of your choice)
A bit of olive oil for the squash roasting
Salt, black pepper, cayenne, smoked paprika, dash of nutmeg (or any herb or seasonings you enjoy)
Herb Infused Sour Cream or Greek Yogurt
A few Tablespoons of Sour Cream or Greek Yogurt
A big pinch of fresh herbs of your choice (my choice would be thyme, green onions or chives), chopped
Preheat oven to 400F. After you’ve halved (with a good, sharp knife) and gutted your squash, drizzle with a bit of olive oil, a bit of salt and a bit of nutmeg.
Place them face down onto a baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes. The squash should be a bit browned and caramelized on the edges. Flip the squash over and let cool slightly. Lower oven temp to 350F.
While squash is baking, sauté onions until translucent on medium heat. Add garlic. When garlic is fragrant, after 1-2 minutes, add shaved Brussels sprouts. Sauté until the sprouts start to brown a bit. Add mushrooms and black beans. Make sure to season a bit more with each addition of ingredients. Continue to sauté on a medium-low heat until the squash is out of the oven, and cooled slightly.
Scoop the sautéed veggies into the squash halves. Top with the cut cheddar and shaved Parmeggiano Regiano.
Place stuffed squash into oven and bake for 5 minutes, or until cheese on top has melted.
And here is my second annual hand at pumpkin carving. Mine is the guy with the stitched mouth. We had a great time making these, and roasting the seeds after!
Spiced Pumpkin Seeds
PS Don’t forget, November is actually Movember!
During November each year, the organization, Movember is responsible for the sprouting of moustaches on thousands of men’s faces, in the US and around the world. With their Mo’s, these men raise vital awareness and funds for men’s health issues, specifically prostate and testicular cancer initiatives. Let’s raise some awareness and grow them staches, gentlemen!
This year I decided to go full out Hannukah- at least my version of full out. I got out the menorah, and called my mom up for her latke recipe.
My Mom suggested to put the potatoes in the blender, if I didn’t want to peel and grate. But we only had 3 potatoes to grate, and my lovely assistant/sous chef April volunteered (to my relief and gratitude), so I went with latkes made with the grated variety. They are so simple to make. I think next time I will try to make them with Zucchini, or Cauliflower perhaps. I stuck to the original recipe, and made a Cranberry-Pomegranate-Orange-Brandy Sauce, and we of course had Sour Cream and Apple Sauce. I also made a delicious Mushroom and Buckwheat Soup that warmed our tummies on a rainy LA eve.
Mushroom Buckwheat Soup
Potato Latkes, with homemade Cranberry-Pomegranate-Orange-Brandy Sauce, Sour Cream and Apple Sauce
Latkes on a plate with Sour Cream and homemade Cranberry-Pomegranate-Orange-Brandy Sauce
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Looking for guidance for a healthier lifestyle and diet?
Want new easy and tasty ideas for a healthier vegetarian/vegan diet?
Need quick and healthy recipes that your family will love?
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My services include:
A unique plan designed specifically for you that can consist of:
*Eliminating food from your kitchen that does not serve your diet.
*A shopping trip; with a built in lesson about alternative grains, sweeteners, proteins and more.
*Custom menus designed specifically for your needs!
*Trips to your local Farmer’s Market to create seasonal, locally grown meals .
*Cooking lessons in your home, categorized by food types and meals.
Impress the tryptophan out of your Thanksgiving Guests!
Whether you’re a vegetarian, you’re having vegetarians over for your Thanksgiving dinner or you’re a carnivore who just loves vegetables, this class is sure to inspire your salivary glands!
As a lifelong vegetarian, and a big lover of Thanksgiving, I have figured out a few key dishes that will surely impress your guests at Thanksgiving.
In about 2 ½ – 3 hours, you will learn how to make these delicious, super healthy and easy dishes. Both classes are $60.
You have two menus to choose from:
SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 1 at 2PM:
Starter: Butternut Squash and Leek Soup with Toasted Seasoned Pumpkin Seeds & Pomegranate Seed Garnish
Side Dish: Tamar’s Perfectly Roasted Savory Cherry Almond Brussels Sprouts (I’ve converted Brussels Sprouts haters with this recipe!)
Entrée or Side: Buckwheat and Lentil Bake (This is a hearty, tasty recipe that can be served as a side dish or entrée, and can be customized for your meal with various vegetables.)
Dessert: Pumpkin Banana Chocolate Chip Bread with Amaranth & Oats (High in Fiber and Vitamins! Make it for dessert, or the morning snack to hold your overnight guests over while they are waiting for dinner!)
Classes are mostly demonstration, but if you wish to only participate, that is great! At the end of class we all sit down together and enjoy the foods we prepared. After each class you’ll take home a thoughtfully prepared packet of recipes, and the skills to show off your own delicious culinary creations!
These classes are designed for people of all ages and all cooking levels. You’ll learn how to care for your health, and prepare delicious food for those you love. We will give you the knowledge and skills to be a confident cook!
To sign up for classes please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, with your name, e-mail address and phone number, along with the date and time of the class that interests you. I will promptly get back to you to confirm availability!