The end of summer weather brings crisp sunny days and cool nights in New England.
And with produce from the farms and gardens still in harvest, it's the perfect time to start cooking soups!
Tonight I created this recipe because I had a lot of cauliflower that needed to be used, along with some gigantic carrots from my garden.
This recipe turned into a five C soup: Cauliflower Carrot Chickpea Coconut Curry because that is what I had on hand. And that's the way I cook.
The way I want to teach you to cook....to have the tools, the knowledge, and the passion to create delicious healthy food on a whim with what you have. I didn't go to culinary school, I just like to eat and I love to create. And that's all you need too!
So stay tuned for my upcoming Culinary Wellness Academy, videos, and ebooks so you can learn to do the same! In the meantime try out this delicious creamy rich vegan soup.
Cauliflower Chickpea Curry - makes 4-6 servings (Vegan & Gluten Free!)
1 Tbsp coconut oil (or ghee for non vegans)
1 Tbsp madras curry
1 tsp cumin seed
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 cups chopped carrots
1 clove garlic minced
1/2-1 tsp sea salt (to taste)
1/2 head cauliflower (4 cups) chopped
3 cups coconut milk (not beverage)
1 cup water
1 (13oz) can of chickpeas rinsed and drained
2 tsp ume plum vinegar or lime juice
In a medium soup pot on low - medium heat add oil and spices. Stir and saute about 2 minutes or until a paste forms and the spices are fragrant. Add in carrots, garlic, and sea salt. Stir together and saute about 5 minutes to coat carrots and begin to soften them.
Add in cauliflower, coconut milk, and water and bring to a gentle boil for about 10 minutes with the lid on. (Don't let the coconut oil come to a heavy boil!) Stir occasionally. Remove cover and cook about another 10 minutes or until cauliflower and carrot are tender. Add chickpeas and stir. Cook just a couple minutes more to heat the chickpeas.
Turn off heat and add the vinegar or lime juice and adjust spices to taste. Serve with jasmine or basmati rice, or even try cooked quinoa or millet. Optionally top with toasted pumpkin seeds and/or chopped cilantro. Add a green salad and you have a healthy vibrant meal!
-chopped veggies are a bit larger in size than diced
-you can add in chopped onion (with carrot) and/or frozen peas (in the second 10 minute cook) for more protein and color
-feel free to adjust spices or just use ground cumin instead of cumin seed
-ume plum vinegar is a salty acid that adds a wonderful depth to foods. It can be found in the Asian food aisles. Lime juice would also be lovely in this. Add vinegar/juice for "brightness", depth, and to pull the soup together.
-because there is so much coconut milk, this curry is super rich so you can also do half water and half milk. I use the Aroy-D brand coco milk found in shelf stable boxes at my local Asian market. It is hands down THE BEST creamy coconut milk and is what is used all over Thailand.
Any questions about this, feel free to message me! ENJOY!
Over the past few years I have thoroughly enjoyed teaching live demonstration and hands on cooking and wellness classes throughout the Seacoast.
I began my teaching journey when I was the Executive Chef and Culinary Wellness Director at The Juicery. I started with demonstration based classes and fell in love with sharing the art and joy of healthy cooking to our community.
I continued on as an instructor at the cooking school at Frinklepod Farm and developed my love for hands on cooking classes such as Vegan Thai Cooking which was a hit! Along with this I taught private cooking classes and combo wellness workshops that included yoga and herbalism.
Even though I only formally started teaching a few years ago, I have been involved in culinary & wellness education and inspiration for years. When I was a baker in an open kitchen I use to share tips with customers, when I worked the chef's table at a high end restaurant I would plate foods while educating and inspiring the customers with culinary artistry, when I was a yoga retreat chef I taught about how food is used to heal, and basically my whole life I have been the go to person for culinary and wellness questions.
So the time has come to share my love of healthy cooking and holistic living with as many people as I can! I am in the process of developing online courses, ebooks, and more as I figure out what you all are eager to learn. Because I love interacting with my community I will still be teaching locally on the Seacoast community at the beautiful new Market & Cafe at Emery Farm in Durham, NH. (Check out their new blog of which I write for!)
In the meantime I would love to hear what you are looking to learn in regards to all things food and wellness related. I have experience in plant based cooking, herbalism, food as medicine, specialty diets, natural mental health, and holistic nutrition so I will start with courses, recipes, meal plans, etc. in those areas.
My passion is to inspire you to have fun in the kitchen and nourish your entire being holistically! I look forward to this new adventure and hope you are a part of it!
CLICK HERE FOR THE ONLINE PLATFORM I WILL BE USING.
During my time this winter cooking at a retreat center in Costa Rica I realized how many people don't know how to create a healthy well balanced MEAL (especially one without meat!).
"Meal" meaning not just one dish, but two to three foods that create a well balanced and full meal. Or in other words...side dishes to accompany a main course.
As a retreat chef and nutritionist that plans meals (and a passionate foodie!) I have learned how to take a main course and combine it with sides to make a healthy vibrant meal.
It is not a lot of extra work and makes a plate more nutritious, colorful, and delicious! So if you want to impress your family (or yourself!) here are a few plant based meal ideas for you to try. The recipes are linked from some of my favorite bloggers that I think you will enjoy.
PRO TIP: do a batch cook night so that you have ingredients on hand throughout the week. For example boil sweet potatoes, roast veggies, cook brown rice and quinoa, make your fav salad dressing, and cut up any veggies on hand to make week night prep easier!
PLANT BASED MEAL IDEAS
Creamy carrot soup with vegan Thai salad in peanut sauce and optional brown rice.
Sweet potato black bean quesadillas with mango salsa and cole slaw.
Lentil soup with brown rice or quinoa and Moroccan carrot raisin salad.
Soba noodle bowl with cucumber side salad.
Fattoush salad with Baba Ganoush and toasted pita chips.
And just for fun, here is an incredibly easy dessert that received rave reviews at the retreat center in Costa Rica...
Banana nice cream with cinnamon sugar tortilla chips.
Put the nice cream in a pretty glass dish, top with a drizzle of agave syrup, and then wedge in a cinnamon sugar tortilla triangle. It looks so fancy, but is oh so simple!
Do you have any favorite entree and side ideas? Please comment below!
PHOTO by Stacey Hamblett (me!) at Kindred Spirits in Costa Rica.
When you have an abundance of carrots, what do you do? Make carrot cake! I had all the necessary ingredients for a good batch of cake and even had vegan cream cheese in my fridge, so I decided to play with creating a new recipe.
This cake is hearty as it is full of shredded carrots, unsweetened coconut flakes, and walnuts. It is flavorful as it is made with 5 spices, coconut milk, and almond flour. And it is moist and not at all gritty like some gluten free foods can be.
I just baked the cake and alternated from eating as is to simply adding a spreading of vegan cream cheese (Tofutti brand). But you could also make a glaze with vegan powdered sugar, orange zest, orange juice and a bit of coconut or almond milk to thin to the right consistency. Simply whisk all together and pour on.
Or you can make a cream cheese frosting with equal parts of room temperature vegan cream cheese and vegan butter, blended with vegan powdered sugar and vanilla/lemon/orange extract, and a bit of coconut or almond milk to thin to the right consistency. Place all in a bowl and use a handheld mixer to blend until frosting like.
Again, if you want a fast and easy cake though, just bake, let cool, smear on vegan cream cheese, and maybe grate some orange zest on top and VOILA! Eat and enjoy!
CARROT CAKE - VEGAN & GLUTEN FREE
makes one 9" cake layer
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9" springform or cake pan.
1 cup almond flour
1 cup white rice flour
1 cup organic cane sugar
1 Tbsp. arrowroot powder
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
2 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. allspice
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
3 Tbsp. ground flax mixed with 1/2 cup water (let sit 5 minutes to thicken - "flax egg")
1 cup coconut milk (from can, not the beverage)
1/2 cup organic canola oil
2 tsp. vanilla or orange extract
3 cups shredded carrots
1 cup chopped unsweetened coconut
1 cup chopped walnuts or raisins
In a large bowl, mix all dry ingredients from flour to spices. In a separate bowl mix the flax egg mixture with coconut milk, oil, and extract. Add the wet mix to the dry and blend until ingredients are all incorporated.
Fold in the carrots, coconut and raisins. Pour mix into pan and bake 50 minutes to 1 hour or until top springs back when lightly touched or toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool then either drizzle on glaze, frost, or add cream cheese OR just eat as is! Can be frozen in small pieces and taken out of freezer and microwaved to enjoy anytime.
Delicious fluffy muffins that are vegan and gluten free, and taste delicious, AND don't fall apart!! SUCCESS!
As well, this recipe that I created doesn't use margarine or gums or all white processed gluten free flours. These actually have some protein from almond flour and healthy fats from organic oil.
Try them and they will become your new morning besties!
TRIPLE BERRY MUFFINS - makes 12
1.5 cups almond, soy, or coconut milk
1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup organic expeller pressed canola oil
1 tsp vanilla or almond extract
2 cups white rice flour
2 cups almond flour
3/4 cup organic cane sugar (plus 1 Tbsp to top)
2 Tbsp. arrowroot powder
1.5 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1.5 cups mixed fresh or frozen berries
Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Grease 12 cup muffin pan.
In a large measuring cup add the cider vinegar to the milk and let curdle about 5 minutes.
In a medium sized bowl whisk together flours, sugar, arrowroot, salt and leavening. Add the oil and extract to the milk mixture and stir. Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture and stir until evenly blended.
Fold in the mixed berries. To keep the berries from staining the batter coat them in a bit of rice flour.
With an ice cream or cookie scooper scoop the batter into the greased muffin tins. Top each muffin with a sprinkle of sugar. Then place in hot oven and bake about 25 minutes or until golden and firm to the touch.
Let cool and enjoy! These will keep at room temp for 2-3 days or can be frozen. YUM!
Photo by Stacey Hamblett (Me!)
This blog is an exploration of life, love, adventure and art primarily through the medium of food.