Creamy Broccoli Soup, Focaccia Bread & Marbled Banana Bread

Soup: reheat until heated through, garnish with parsley. Bread: reheat in oven until heated through.

I want to apologize ahead of time to say that I feel like I’m sending too small a portion of soup and dessert. I doubled the soup recipe. I think I needed to triple or maybe even quadruple the recipe. I didn’t double the marbled banana bread recipe because I figured that half a loaf each would be plenty. So apologies if you are left hungry. Not my intention.

The Broccoli soup was my attempt to make something that was not bursting with sophisticated flavors as I wondered if that was an issue for my kids over-sensitive palate. Well, Milo sort of liked it. Loti sort of liked it. Edan wouldn’t touch it. Neal & I enjoyed it though I didn’t experience any creaminess. I have another Broccoli soup recipe that is much better than this one. The focaccia bread is AWESOME! I was disappointed recently when we went to an Italian restaurant and their homemade focaccia bread wasn’t vegan. It looked soooooooo good. So I made me some. Super easy and so delicious. Not a crumb left. I had high hopes for the banana bread. It is good and everyone loved it but I was imagining a big loaf with a more defined marble look. I will revisit this recipe again to perfect it. Hope you enjoy.

Recipes: Creamy Broccoli Soup (from Better than Peanut Butter and Jelly, pg 34), Focaccia Bread and Marbled Banana Bread


Garbanzo Quiche, Home Fries and Baked Apples

Take two of the garbanzo quiche. To reheat, pop it in the oven, uncovered-350 degrees, 30-45 minutes. After 20-30 minutes, brush top with earth balance and bake remaining minutes. Gryffin helped me chop the cauliflower and peppers and stir up the garbanzo sauce.

I’m sending you whole potatoes that have been par-baked, for you or Neal to make into home fries. I didn’t want to send the home fries already fried, for fear they’d get soggy and soft. Once upon a time, Matthew made home fries with left over baked potatoes and they were the best texture ever. I’m sure y’all have your favorite way to prepare your home fries, so all you’ll have to do is cut and fry. They shouldn’t take long as they’re already baked.

Same with the baked apples. I didn’t want to send them baked, as they’re sure to be better fresh out of the oven. I’d put them in the oven at the same time as your begin to reheat your quiche so they can either finish baking while you eat or cool a little. The apples are stuffed with walnuts and topped with earth balance, brown sugar and cinnamon. Serve plain or with vanilla ice cream. I just love the syrup that forms in the bottom on the pan while baking. Matthew and I cored the apples (hopefully getting all the seed cases/cartilage), and Gryffin prepared the rest.  Bake until apples are soft and syrup is bubbly.


Recipes: Garbanzo Quiche, Home Fries, Baked Apples

Tortilla Soup, Evergreen Salad, Maple Butter Bundt Cake

Here’s my spin on a Tortilla Soup recipe I learned from my friend Sasha. Top with cheese, jalepeno, cilantro, a squeeze of lime, scallion and tortilla strips.

The Evergreen Salad is from a raw cookbook that I have. The dressing is meant to marinate the greens to soften them, so upon first glance they look wilted or cooked. They’re not, just marinated in a sunflower seed-thyme dressing.

I never knew I liked bundt cake so much. You should get a bundt pan for all your cakes that don’t rise in the middle. I love the lemony flavor in the icing.

I might throw in some quesadillas for the kids as the soup is spicy. I meant to cook a bland soup and send the peppers and other spice on the side. It ended up getting spicy somehow anyway, so viola, and oops.

Bundt Cake recipe:

Neal’s Best Chili Ever over Brown Rice with Carrot Cake Cupcakes

I’m a big fan of Neal’s chili. He uses 4 or 5 different beans, roasts peppers & I contribute seitan (cannellini bean base). We had ours with baked potatoes but I worried I had baked potatoed you out last co-op meal so I sent brown rice. I like the chili both ways or on its own. Topped with cheese & corn chips & you have one of my very favorite meals. You have had Neal’s chili before so apologies for unoriginality. I did go with carrot cake cupcakes with cream cheese frosting. They are super moist & it’s pretty much impossible to ruin this icing recipe. However, the darn muffins didn’t rise properly. Oven thermometer, check. Finely grated carrots, dried, check. Careful measuring, check. I’m determined to master this recipe. I love the taste but they look so sad. This recipe also only made 10. Yes, I was cheated 2 muffins. Crazy!

Reheating instruction: heat chili & rice till heated through. Top with cheese & corn chips. Keep cupcakes in fridge. I think the icing is best chilled.

Beans and Tortillas with Red Chili Sauce, Quelites, and Bizcochitos

Cedar brought home an American Girl Doll cookbook from Becker Library featuring Josefina and her New Mexican cuisine so we thought it would be fun to pick dinner share recipes from it!

Beans: Straight up, simple pinto bean recipe. I used a few new techniques I learned from watching Martha Stewarts Cooking Show yesterday and turns out the same techniques were actually described in the actual recipe in the Josefina cookbook. I learned the beans should be stored in their cooking water in the refrigerator so that’s how I’m sending them to you. To reheat, simmer beans in their liquid on stovetop. Strain beans with slotted spoon to serve.

Tortillas a la Gryffin: Gryffin made the tortillas. We think they’re wonderful. To reheat, I might wrap them in tin foil and place in oven for 5-10 minutes. It’s possible they’ll dry out a little and crack upon folding, but, still yummy.

Red Chili Sauce: I’ve never made this before. It has a little kick to it, as you’d expect. Personally, I only liked it with a small skim of it on the tortilla. If I used too much, I found the flavor to be too much.

I sprinkled some Daiya cheddar cheese on mine and liked it. (Not included)

Quelites: I’ve no idea what the translation is on this. It’s steamed spinach with mild fire roasted hatch chilies and onions. We used it as a topping in the beans and tortillas although it makes a nice side too. To reheat I’d just bring to simmer on stovetop and remove from heat. Drain before serving.

Bizcochitos a la Cedar: Cedar made the cookies and in true meal planning fashion, we picked out this recipe first. We happened to make these GF for my mom to enjoy, which she did. (The tortillas are not GF). The little cookies are unusual and very good. We rolled them out in almond meal which was not in the recipe and I loved the taste of almond in my mouth followed by the slight anise flavor, enhanced by the cinnamon and sugar. Not something I’d make regularly, but they were easy and fun for Cedar to make.

The kids exclaimed this was their best dinner share meal EVER. They do love beans and tortillas though. Overall, it was not too time consuming to make. The  cookies and the tortillas were most time consuming and I had help with them. The beans and the chili sauce were a breeze. I will say that this is the best batch of beans I’ve ever done. Such great flavor to me.

Hope you enjoy! As always, can’t wait for the review!

Baked Potato and Greens Soup with Potato Wedge Croutons and Gluten Free Cookie Dough Bites

There was a picture of the soup in the Veganomicon recipe book that really looked delicious. I like baked potatoes. I like greens. I like…no, I love croutons.  However, after it was made and served, I realized this meal is ‘POTATO-TASTIC’! Not a problem in this family but in the future, I would substitute the Potato Wedge Croutons for something made from something other than potato. Having said that, everyone gobbled up the wedges. I served them on the side (instead of in the soup) with some ketchup. I would make the wedges again with veggie burgers or dogs. The cookies are far from my dream dessert. I think there are people who eat cookie dough and there are people who do not. I DO NOT eat cookie dough. I knew this going into the recipe but I wanted to be open-minded especially since the recipe was highly rated and gluten-free. So, if you are a cookie dough eater, I really hope these satisfy. If not, sorry! Overall, I feel that this was a meal that did not induce any sort of time/prep stress. I really enjoyed the soup and will definitely make it again. Next time, I’d like to add some other veggies and decrease the amount of potato. I loved the broth. I really hope you enjoy this meal.

Recipes: Baked Potato and Greens Soup with Potato Wedge Croutons and GF Cookie Dough Bites

Harvest Vegetable Shepherd’s Pie with Orange Mashed Yam Crust, Skillet Roasted Limas with Italian Herbs and Double Chocolate Peppermint Cookies


To reheat:

Shepherd’s Pie: Heat in oven to browned and bubbly at 350 for 30 minutes or so. Uncovered

Limas: Drizzle with olive oil and heat in the oven to warm. Uncovered. Top with pesto if you like.


Skillet Roasted Limas with Italian Herbs Harvest Vegetable Shepherd’s Pie with Orange Mashed Yam Crust Double Chocolate Peppermint Cookies


Quinoa Tabbouleh Stuffed Roasted Peppers, Falafel, and Lemon Snaps

I woke up Sunday morning excited to get to play in the kitchen with a couple of new recipes. I prepped the veg for the quinoa tabbouleh Saturday night so that whipped together very quickly and was able to marinate all day. I’ve made this tabbouleh recipe many times. Cedar likes it a lot. Like I mentioned, I’d never made falafel before. Overall, I was pleased with how they came together and the overal simplicity of the recipe. I thought they were a little too dry and I really wanted a tahini or hummus sauce to dip them in. I was really excited to try the lemon snaps. I’m not a big fan of ginger snaps but I knew I’d love the lemon. I was loving the texture of the cookies, chewey AND crunchy, best of both worlds. I have a feeling these cookies will be a staple cookie in the Toavs house for years to come. YUM. I hope you enjoyed them too.