Dairy-Free, Dessert, Drinks, Gluten-Free, Lightened Up, Vegan, Vegetarian

A Spin on Lemonade & Piña Colada

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This may be my new summer drink, so much so that we made this twice in once weekend. Frozen Coconut Lemonade will be your new favorite drink to cool down and sip a decadent version of lemonade. I made this both as a cocktail and a mocktail. I’d suggest the full-fat coconut milk for a mocktail and using the proportions below for a cocktail. Either way is delicious. It’s sweet, tart, rich, and zesty.

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Entrée, Lightened Up, Meal Prep, Salad, Vegetarian

Spring Buddha Bowls with Veggies & Farro

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Ted and I couldn’t get enough of these Spring Veggie, Marinated Chickpeas, & Farro Bowls. It’s the type of meal that you’re sad when you finish the leftovers. These grain bowls are savory yet bright with the dressing, chewy thanks to the farro, crunchy from the radishes and snap peas, and creamy because of the goat cheese and avocado. By marinating the chickpeas directly in the dressing, they absorb some of the flavor. We served this with a piece of crusty bread, channeling our inner sweetgreen during this pandemic. This salad is fun because you can change your veggies and toppings every time. We added pumpkin seeds one night, fresh basil and mint another, and Ted added cherry tomatoes on our third try. We did only spinach for one and mixed greens for another. Mix and match to make it your own!

 

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Dessert, Gluten-Free, Lightened Up, Low Sugar, One Pot Dish, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

Vibrant & Bright Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

While I do not claim for these cookies to be true Anzac biscuits, the basis for the ingredients screamed like an Annie cookie. Without eggs, the cookies held up quite well despite lacking eggs when families sent these biscuits to the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps–hence Anzac–circa WWI. The true recipe calls for oats, flour, sugar, butter, “golden syrup,” and coconut. I found a recipe for these in Sweet, and I decided to tweak these to be my own. I call them Coconut Oatmeal Cookies with Raisins & Lemon. They’re still sweet (despite using only 3/4 c sugar instead of almost 2 c), bright from the cardamom and lemon zest, and perfectly chewy thanks to the oats and raisins. They’re like an updated version of your grandmother’s oatmeal raisin cookies.

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Dessert, Lightened Up, Low Sugar, Snack, Vegetarian

Christmas Stollen on Christmas Morning

Merry Christmas! I promise you that if you make bread, Christmas Stollen is an easy bread to tackle. I’m a little too organized, so I simplified the steps and the ingredient groups. You just need to prep accordingly to let the nuts and fruit soak and allow the bread to rise. Stollen is a traditional German bread made with dried fruits, candied citrus, nuts, and spices dating back to the late 1300s or early 1400s from Dresden, Germany. Our neighbors use an old recipe and gift us Stollen each Christmas that we swap for our homemade cut-out cookies and Spritz. We munch on Stollen on Christmas morning as we open presents and enjoy each other’s company. I kept this version simple using the dried fruit and sliced almonds that I had, but I’d highly recommend buying or making your own candied citrus. By using yeast instead of making a quick bread, this Christmas bread becomes dense and chewy.

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dessert, Snack, Vegetarian

The Perfect Breakfast: Strawberry Rhubarb Parfait

Zesty Strawberry Rhubarb Compote Parfait

It’s rhubarb season, strawberry season AND hot summer days season. Normally I have the luxury of enjoying fresh rhubarb back home in Maine — straight out of the garden. Thank God Whole Foods in Boston delivered; you can buy individual stalks when in season. My mom and I originally found this strawberry-rhubarb compote recipe from Skinny Taste a couple summers ago. The tartness of the rhubarb is perfectly balanced with sweet and juicy strawberries to make a sauce. This time, I added in lemon zest and a juicy ripe peach. Layer over your favorite yogurt and granola for a Zesty Strawberry Rhubarb Compote Parfait — the perfect on-the-go breakfast! (Or hey — even dessert.)

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Breakfast/Brunch, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Vegan, Vegetarian

Decadently Different Ginger Lemon Zest Oatmeal

Ginger Oatmeal with Lemon Zest

This Ginger Oatmeal with Lemon Zest seemed decadently different. I have a lot of fresh ginger kicking around from making Cranberry Orange Tea with Ginger and the peanut sauce for the Asian Peanut Zucchini Noodles. Freshly grated ginger is a bit stringy, so I used a combination of ground and fresh ginger to get the taste. The lemon zest adds a bright flavor and then topped with blueberries and juicy pomegranate seeds and your tastebuds won’t know what hit them.

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Dairy-Free, Dessert, Gluten-Free, Snack, Vegetarian

Luscious Lemon Cranberry Cookies

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You’d never know these Lemon Cranberry Cookies were lacking butter. Made with some coconut flour, applesauce and agave, they’re citrusy, so yummy and just the perfect after dinner dessert. Their consistency would also go well with a cup of coffee or tea. I whipped these up along with the Bang Bang Cauliflower, when we had our family friends over for dinner, back from their southern hiatus. Not tart, but also not too sweet, these cookies are perfectly balanced. I might have to add them to my holiday cookie line-up. You can’t have just one.

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Dairy-Free, Entrée, Gluten-Free, Salad, Seafood, Vegetarian

Summer Seafood

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Need a light, fresh and tasty dinner? I found this recipe for a grilled summer salad in Giada De Laurentiis’s cookbook, originally served cold. I wish my apartment had access to a grill, but this was still delicious baking the shrimp and sautéing the vegetables until they were slightly browned. Using the marinade to double as the salad dressing saves time, while maintaining the flavor of the fresh herbs and lemon zest. The creamy avocado balances the acidic flavors of the marinade. Definitely worth a try!

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