Wild Lavender Honey Granola w/ Quinoa Flakes & Oats

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To describe the last month as “busy” would be an understatement. Kris and I have been insanely wrapped up in work, our upcoming move to our new home, and trying to find any time in between to tackle the everyday tasks. We have a lot happening in the near future and the excitement is beyond words. Forgive me for being absent for the last few weeks, please know that I am constantly trying to get back here; to this space where I can sit down and be nothing else but…me. I am almost saddened when too much time has passed in between blog posts, there’s this disconnect with my inner creativity and I feel a bit uninspired and unfruitful. I have to shake myself out of the slump and remember that this here is my happiness. My outlet to not only share my recipes, but my feelings and, of course, the affection I have the for the craft. So, just to be clear, the next couple months will be difficult for me to make the time to share more recipes here but I will try my damnedest!! That I can promise. 

Kris and I belong to a few local wine clubs here in town, and one of which not only includes wines in the quarterly gift basket but they also give delicious cheeses and other fun little accoutrements. At the last wine pick up party we received a little bottle of wild lavender honey. I immediately thought “granola” and I knew that it would have to be made sooner than later. I have been wanting to make another version of granola for quite some time and this was the perfect opportunity. I had some quinoa flakes in my pantry and figured it would be an excellent addition to the rolled oats. Quinoa flakes are essentially just quinoa that have been rolled and flattened into a flake. They are, of course, gluten free and supply an excellent source of protein. I found the quinoa flakes at a local health food store (Whole Foods, Mother’s, or Hanson’s). If you can’t find the quinoa flakes, adding more oats would be just fine. This recipe makes about 5 cups of granola, so feel free to share…your friends will love you forever! 

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Wild Lavender Honey Granola w/ Quinoa Flakes & Oats


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Prep Time
5 min

Cook Time
25 min

Total Time
30 min

Prep Time
5 min

Cook Time
25 min

Total Time
30 min

Ingredients
  1. 2.5 cups gluten-free rolled oats
  2. 1 cup quinoa flakes (see note)*
  3. 1 cup sliced almonds
  4. 1/4 cup flax seeds
  5. 1 tsp sea salt
  6. 1/4 tsp ginger
  7. 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  8. 1/2 cup coconut oil, in liquid form at room temperature
  9. 1/4 cup + 1 TBSP wild lavender honey (or any honey you like, or maple syrup)
  10. 1 tsp vanilla
  11. 1/2 cup dried fruit (use anything you like, I used dried wild blueberries and dried cranberries)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Prepare a baking sheet with parchment or Silpat. In a large bowl, combine the oats, flakes, almonds, flax seeds, salt, ginger, and cinnamon and mix to combine. Add in the coconut oil, honey, and vanilla and mix well. Lay the granola out on to the prepared baking sheet and spread it out into an even layer. You will bake the granola for a total of 25 minutes, but halfway through the bake time, take the granola out of the oven, stir around, and then spread back out in an even layer before baking it for the rest of the time. Remove from the oven, and let cool. The granola will get crispier as it cools. Add the dried fruit and break it all up with a spatula. Serve with your favorite yogurt and fresh fruit. Store in an airtight container for a few weeks at room temperature.
Notes
  1. If you can’t find quinoa flakes at your local health food store, simply substitute for more oats.
HONEYED HOME http://www.honeyedhome.com/

Veggie Pizza w/ Homemade Vegan Beer Crust

DSC_0320There is this local pizza restaurant in San Clemente that has all the quintessential qualities you would expect for a family-owned surf town joint. It is where all major sporting events are watched, where your child’s fifth birthday will be held, and where you go to eat the best pizza and drink craft beers with good friends. One of my favorite things about this place, is that it not only makes every pizza from scratch, but that the selections include a range between standard pizzas and new unique versions of the classics. The thing I crave the most, is their take on a vegan beer crust. Kris and I order every pizza with this crust and just about die every time because it is honestly the softest, chewiest, fluffiest, and most flavorful crust we have ever tried. I knew that I had to recreate it at home and luckily it was a job well done. The beer creates this richness in the crust that you can not get from the yeast and flour alone. I chose to use a local IPA, India Pale Ale, which is essentially just a dark, crisp, hoppy beer. Please feel free to use your favorite beer, but remember the darker and hoppier; the more flavor will come across into the crust. Also, it is worth noting that the crust is made with whole-wheat flour so there is that extra bit of nutrients and fiber that you don’t normally get from a pizza, so go ahead, have another slice! This recipe is seriously easy and homemade pizza is so worth every minute of the prep time. It is super versatile, like most pizza recipes, in the sense that you can top it with whatever it is you like; meats, cheeses, veggies, or fruits! The possibilities are endless. Enjoy fellow pizza lovers! 

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Veggie Pizza w/ Homemade Vegan Beer Crust

Serves 4


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Prep Time
2 hr 30 min

Cook Time
20 min

Total Time
2 hr 50 min

Prep Time
2 hr 30 min

Cook Time
20 min

Total Time
2 hr 50 min

For the Vegan Beer Crust
  1. 3/4 cup dark beer (I used a local IPA)
  2. 1 package active dry yeast (1/4oz envelope)
  3. 1/2 TBSP cane sugar
  4. 2 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  5. 1.5 tsp sea salt
  6. 1.5 cups whole-wheat flour (plus about 4-5 TBSP for kneading and rolling)
For the Veggie Toppings
  1. 1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
  2. 10oz bag of sliced (clean & washed) Cremini mushrooms
  3. 1/2 tsp salt
  4. 1/2 tsp pepper
  5. 8oz bag baby bell peppers (of mixed colors), sliced thin in rounds
  6. 1 shallot, sliced thin in rounds
  7. 1 green onion, sliced thin
  8. 1 jalapeño, sliced thin in rounds (remove the rib and seeds if you do not want too spicy)
  9. 1/2 cup pizza sauce, marinara or other (I used Arrabiata sauce)* see note
  10. 1-1.5 cups organic shredded mozzarella cheese (or any shredded cheese you like, vegan cheese too!)
  11. 1 TBSP chopped fresh basil, chiffonade style
For the Vegan Beer Crust
  1. Pour the beer into a sauce pan and heat over low heat for about 2 minutes. Put your finger in to test that it is warm but not hot (if the beer is too hot it will kill the yeast!). Remove from heat.
  2. In a large glass bowl, add the yeast and sugar and pour the warm beer in. Whisk well and then let sit for about 5 minutes until it is foamy and frothy.
  3. Whisk in 1 TBSP of the olive oil. Add the salt and 1.5 cups of the flour. Mix well with a wooden spoon. Spread a two tablespoons of flour on a clean work surface. Knead the dough with your hands adding more flour (1 TBSP at a time) if you need to (the dough should not be too sticky, it should come together and become elastic. It should bounce back when you poke it).
  4. Add the remaining TBSP of olive oil to the glass bowl you previously used and flip the bowl around so the oil coats the sides and bottom of the bowl. Add the dough ball to the bowl and coat all sides of the dough in the oil. Cover the bowl with a dish towel or plastic wrap and let sit on the counter for two hours.
  5. Take the dough ball out of the glass bowl and place onto a clean work surface or parchment paper and cover with a warm, damp towel and let rise for another 20 minutes. At this point, you can refrigerate the dough for a later use.
  6. Preheat the oven to 400. If you have a pizza stone, place it in the oven to preheat as well.
  7. Roll out the dough on a floured work surface into a 12″ circle. Pinch the sides so that you get a slightly raised crust edge.
For the Veggie Toppings
  1. Slice all the veggies into thin rounds. Remove the ribs and seeds from the bell peppers and jalapeño. Separate the shallot slices from each other.
  2. In a skillet, heat 1 TBSP olive oil over medium. Add the sliced Cremini mushrooms, salt and pepper, and sauté for about 3 minutes. Set aside.
  3. Place the rolled out dough onto the baking sheet or pizza stone you wish to cook the pizza on (if using a pizza stone careful not to touch as it will be hot!).
  4. Working quickly, spread a thin layer of the pizza sauce over the pizza dough, leaving room on edges so the crust is clean. Add the sautéed mushrooms on top of the sauce (use a slotted spoon here so that you don’t get any of the water that cooked out of the mushrooms). Sprinkle the shredded mozzarella over the sauce and mushrooms. Sprinkle the sliced shallot, green onion, bell peppers, and jalapeño over the top of the cheese in a colorful fashion. You may not use every veggie that you sliced, I didn’t. (Use any leftovers in a salad!) Bake for 20 minutes or until crust edges are golden brown. Once removed from the oven and cooled slightly, sprinkle the basil over the top. Slice into 8 slices, serve immediately and enjoy!
Notes
  1. Arrabiata sauce is a marinara sauce that has a bit of a kick (it’s pretty spicy!). I love this on my pizza but feel free to use any sauce that you like in particular. This goes for the cheese as well.
Adapted from Beer Crust
Adapted from Beer Crust
HONEYED HOME http://www.honeyedhome.com/

Cauliflower Couscous w/ Quick Pickled Red Onions

DSC_0329Cauliflower is the new black. I swear this vegetable has made the biggest comeback (in the most delightful way) in the past couple of years. Currently you can find cauliflower as a gluten free option for just about anything, including (but not limited to); pizza doughs, pasta dishes, and several baked goods. It is such a versatile little veggie that is pretty subtle in flavor and will take on pretty much whatever you wish of it. I wanted to make a cauliflower couscous after I saw this recipe. What an incredible way to eat a ton of veggies in one big bowl! It really feels like you are eating “real” couscous (you know the kind that is made with all the glutens and flours?)! Except, in this recipe you are consuming a vegan, gluten-free, and insanely delicious salad without any of the, so-called naughty, carbohydrates. The best part about the entire bowl, is that you can eat the whole thing and never once feel guilty. You could even hit up some seconds! Sounds like a winner on the neat and clean eating front. Oh, I shouldn’t forget to note that I have been wanting to share my recipe for quick pickled red onions for some time now. Pickled onions are one of the easiest ways to add so much flavor to any meal. I like to keep a jar on hand for quick weeknight salads or lunchtime sandwiches. It takes but thirty minutes for the pickled onions to deliver a zesty tang, a faint spiciness, with just a hint of garlic. Quick, easy, and flavorful is like the trifecta of awesomeness. These were the perfect addition for the cauliflower couscous. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I did! Excuse me while I head back for another helping… DSC_0285

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Cauliflower Couscous w/ Quick Pickled Red Onions

Serves 4


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Prep Time
30 min

Total Time
45 min

Prep Time
30 min

Total Time
45 min

For the Quick Pickled Red Onions
  1. 1 small-medium red onion, thinly sliced into half-moons
  2. 2 cloves garlic, peeled and cut in half
  3. 1 cup rice vinegar (you could use any light vinegar; white wine vinegar or even apple cider vinegar)
  4. 1 tsp sugar
  5. 1 tsp salt
  6. 2 tsp peppercorns (I used multicolored peppercorns)
  7. 1 tsp dried rosemary
  8. 1 tsp red pepper flakes
For the Cauliflower Couscous
  1. 1 head of cauliflower
  2. 1/2 cup pine nuts
  3. 1 english cucumber
  4. 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  5. 1/2 cup shelled edamame
  6. 1 large handful fresh basil, chopped
  7. 1 large handful fresh cilantro, chopped
  8. 1 large handful fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  9. 1 lemon, zest and juice
  10. 1 TBSP honey (or agave if vegan)
  11. 1/2 tsp chipotle chili powder
  12. 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  13. 1/2 tsp salt
  14. 1/2 tsp pepper
  15. 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
  16. 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
For the Quick Pickled Red Onions
  1. In a large stockpot, bring about a quart of water to a boil. Thinly slice the red onion and add to a large glass bowl. Once you have finished crying, pull the slices apart from each other and separate them with your fingers. Pour the boiling water into the glass bowl and let the onions sit for about 30-45 seconds in the water. Drain the par-blanched onions into a strainer. In a small bowl, combine the vinegar, salt and sugar and mix until dissolved. Add the garlic, peppercorns, rosemary, and red pepper flakes and stir to combine. Add the onions into a clean glass jar or container you wish to store them in (I had to pack the onions down in the jar to fit all the slices). Pour the seasoned vinegar over the onion slices (I added just a tad bit more vinegar to the top of the onions so that they were all covered in the liquid). Place the onions in the fridge and let them sit for at least 30 minutes before using. They will store in the air-tight container for up to two weeks in the fridge.
For the Cauliflower Couscous
  1. Bring a large saucepan with water to a boil (add 1/2 tsp salt to the water). Meanwhile, cut off the cauliflower stem and chop the cauliflower into florets and add them to the bowl of your food processor (if your food processor is small you should work in batches). Pulse a few times until you reach a couscous texture (careful not to pulse too much or it will turn into cauliflower paste, ew!). Pour the cauliflower bits into the boiling water and let cook for about three minutes (we aren’t trying to cook the cauliflower here, just taking the raw edge off). Drain the cauliflower couscous into a fine mesh sieve (try and get a much water off as you can). Add the couscous to a large bowl and fluff with a fork.
  2. In a dry skillet, add the pine nuts. Toast them over med-heat, stirring occasionally until slightly toasted and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Set them aside. In a small bowl, combine all the vinaigrette ingredients; lemon zest and juice, honey, chili powder, cumin, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Add the olive oil and whisk well to combine. Add the dressing to the couscous and continue to fluff with a fork. Add the toasted pine nuts, the dried cranberries and the edamame to the couscous. Cut the english cucumber in half, and using a spoon, scoop out all the seeds of the cucumber (this is an important step because the seeds add too much water to the salad if you leave them in). Chop the cucumber and add it to the salad. Add all the chopped herbs and give one last stir to mix. Top each bowl with some of the pickled red onion slices and serve immediately. Store the salad in an airtight container for 2-3 days in the fridge.
Notes
  1. This couscous salad makes enough for four people as a side and is plenty for two people as a main.
HONEYED HOME http://www.honeyedhome.com/

Grilled Artichokes w/ Lemon Caper Aioli

DSC_0307Yesterday was Father’s Day and my dad’s birthday! So, because it was such a memorable day, and we were celebrating two major reasons to love on my on pops, I decided to make his favorite grilled veggie. When I was growing up, I could find my dad in the kitchen on special occasions, otherwise it was mostly my mother who cooked. My father was the grill master and would always be the one to prepare a select few things; he made the juiciest steaks, the best gyros, and of course, the perfect artichokes. He knew what he was really good at and he stuck to his classic recipes. From what I can remember, we seemed to always have those crazy good artichokes on those long summer nights and it was usually for a Sunday supper. Sunday dinners were always special in our home. My sister and I would sit down with my mom and dad and discuss the past weeks events and the future weeks plans. It was nice and I really miss those times.

I wanted to make the same grilled artichokes I grew up with, but with a bit of a twist. Kris and I don’t own an outdoor grill, so the job had to be done on a grill pan on our stovetop (which incidentally turned out perfectly!). I have always been a bit intimidated by the big green vegetable, that some what resembles a succulent or cactus flower, but have learned that they are just the opposite of intimidating. In fact, they are super simple to prepare but do require just a few tasks. The thing about artichokes, is they take some time to prepare and they need a lot of flavor enhancing goodies. They are all about a labor of love and that is one reason why I adore them so much. Even when it comes time to eat them, you have to “get through” the outer leaves to reach the perfectly cooked center, called the heart. You must coax these babies with a lot of affection and they will most definitely love you right back! The lemon caper aioli is a friendly dipping sauce for the artichokes and is really nice if you are serving this as an appetizer for a small gathering, but otherwise isn’t really much needed. These artichokes can be eaten straight from the pan and have enough seasoning to sustain them alone, although the ailoi is always a nice touch. Serve them how you wish and remember to give them a try for your next dinner! Enjoy! 

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Grilled Artichokes w/ Lemon Caper Aioli

Serves 4


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Prep Time
15 min

Cook Time
15 min

Total Time
30 min

Prep Time
15 min

Cook Time
15 min

Total Time
30 min

For the Grilled Artichokes
  1. 4 globe artichokes
  2. 1 TBSP red wine vinegar
  3. 2 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil
  4. 1 garlic clove, smashed
  5. salt & pepper
  6. 1 TBSP chopped fresh dill
  7. 1 TBSP chopped fresh parsely
For the Lemon Caper Aioli
  1. 1 large egg yolk
  2. 1 garlic clove, minced
  3. 1/2 tsp salt
  4. 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  5. pinch of cayenne
  6. juice of a small lemon
  7. 2 tsp dijon mustard
  8. 1/4 tsp pepper
  9. 1 TBSP capers (optional)
Instructions
  1. 1. Prepare the Lemon Caper Aioli. In large clean bowl, whisk the egg yolk, garlic and salt with 2 teaspoons of water until frothy. Whisking constantly, slowly drizzle in the olive oil, about a teaspoon at a time, until it become thick and creamy looking. Whisk in the cayenne, dijon, lemon juice and pepper. Add the capers and whisk. Cover and set aside in the fridge.
  2. 2. Prepare the artichokes. Add the olive oil and the smashed garlic clove to a small bowl and set aside. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add 1 TBSP red wine vinegar. Cut off about an inch off each of the artichoke’s stems and about 1/2″-1″ off the top of the artichokes. Peel away some of the outer lower tough leaves. Cut each artichoke in half lengthwise and scoop out the choke (the “hairy” middle). Add the artichokes to the boiling water and boil for 10 minutes, using tongs to push them under the water from time to time. Drain the artichokes and place on a large plate or baking sheet. Heat your outdoor grill, or your stove-top grill pan or cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Once cool enough to handle, brush each artichoke with garlic infused olive oil and sprinkle each one with a generous amount of salt and pepper. Place cut side down and grill for 5 minutes or until visible char marks are seen. Plate the artichokes cut side up and sprinkle with freshly chopped dill and parsley. Serve immediately with (or without) the lemon caper aioli. Enjoy!
Notes
  1. These artichokes could serve a small gathering of 4-6 people as a little, yet super delicious, appetizer, or 2-4 people as a side.
  2. The aioli is obviously not vegan. If you are not consuming animal products, a nice lemon vinaigrette could work just fine. These artichokes are just as good without a dipping sauce when served on their own!
Adapted from Aioli from Sprouted Kitchen
HONEYED HOME http://www.honeyedhome.com/

Sweet Cherry Hand Pies

DSC_0448I can’t believe it has been almost two weeks since the last post! What a crazy whirlwind it has been around here! I just celebrated my twenty-ninth trip around the sun and let me tell you it was one of the best birthdays yet! My husband planned out an entire weekend for us in San Fransisco and I was so elated to get on that plane because I had never been to this magical city before. I know it is so crazy to think that it took me this long to get there but I finally made it! What an incredible place. We spent three days there, sightseeing, eating, and of course, drinking. We really maxed out our efforts and filled every minute with a memory that I will never forget.  It was so beautiful and I already can not wait to go back. The Irish coffees at the Buena Vista are calling my name! When we got back from our trip, I only had a few days to catch up with work and then I was diving head first into another celebration; my best friend’s baby shower. It was such a gorgeous party and everything went off with out a hitch. She and her soon-to-be little princess were ridiculously spoiled and it was so beautiful to see all the love around her. I can not wait to meet that little baby girl and my heart is so full for the both of them.

So, after all the craziness I am finally back. I was having a bit of an internal battle deciding on what my next post would be and I decided to retouch on a recipe that had failed me a few months ago. It is really awful when you work so hard on a recipe only to find out that it either tastes horrible or that it doesn’t quite photograph how you had hoped. The latter isn’t one that everyone has to worry about but it definitely hinders me often. I not only want the dish to taste great but it has to be appealing to the eyes (and the lens) so that you all want to make it too! It is quite difficult at times, people. I made some blueberry hand pies back in February and the dough ended up being too crackly and all the filling leaked out of them and, frankly, it looked like an utter mess. I made some important tweaks to the prior recipe and I was so pleasantly surprised when they turned out perfectly this time! Since it is now cherry season, I knew that sweet cherries would be a wonderful substitute for the blueberries. These little pies, that fit so nicely in the palm of your hand, are the cutest and most delicious treats I have made in a while. They aren’t overly sweet but will definitely hit the spot. That 3:30pm lull (you know that one that begs you for a nap or a giant cupcake?) has just met it’s enlightenment. These petite pies are vegan and dairy-free, so go ahead and have another! Enjoy! DSC_0149

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Sweet Cherry Hand Pies

Serves 8


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Prep Time
30 min

Cook Time
25 min

Total Time
55 min

Prep Time
30 min

Cook Time
25 min

Total Time
55 min

For the Filling
  1. 2 cups sweet cherries, stemmed and pitted
  2. light squeeze of fresh lemon juice (1-2 tsps)
  3. 2 TBSP organic cane sugar
  4. 1 tsp vanilla
  5. 1/8 tsp salt
  6. 1 TBSP cornstarch (mixed with 1 TBSP cold water)
For the Dough
  1. 1 cup whole wheat flour
  2. 1.5 cups AP flour, plus more for rolling
  3. 1 TBSP organic cane sugar
  4. 1 tsp salt
  5. 3/4 cup coconut oil, in solid form
  6. 1/3 cup + 3 TBSP ice cold water
  7. 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chunks (or chocolate chips) (vegan chocolate if needed)
  8. turbinado sugar for sprinkling
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Make the filling…
  3. In a small dish, combine the cornstarch and water and stir to dissolve, set aside. In a saucepan, add the cherries, lemon juice, sugar, vanilla and salt and cook over medium heat for about five minutes and the cherries will start to release some of their juices. Add the cornstarch and water mixture to the cherries and bring it all to a boil, while stirring often (using the back of the wooden spoon, smash a few of the cherries down). The cherry juices will start to thicken. After a minute, turn off the heat and set the cherry filling aside.
  4. Make the dough…
  5. In the bowl of the food processor, add the flours, the TBSP sugar, and salt and pulse to combine. Add the solid coconut oil and pulse until the mixture forms small pea sized bits. Add in the ice cold water, continuing to pulse until dough forms into a ball. Be careful not to over-mix! Add additional water (1 TBSP at a time) if needed. Form the dough into a ball and roll it out on a lightly floured surface, until it is about 1/8″ thick. Using a 4″ round cookie cutter, cut out 16 circles.
  6. Roll out each circle just a bit flatter before dividing the cherry filling among eight of the circles. Add a few chocolate chunks to the cherry filling and then top each one with an additional round of dough. Using a fork, secure the sides of each pie. Using a sharp pairing knife, cut a tiny slit into the top of each pie so that the steam can be released. Place the eight hand pies on the prepared baking sheet and sprinkle each pie with a bit of turbinado sugar. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until edges are slightly brown. Remove and set on a wire rack to cool. Serve warm and enjoy!
Notes
  1. Serving these with a tiny scoop of ice cream is highly recommended and exceptionally favored!
Adapted from A House In The Hills
HONEYED HOME http://www.honeyedhome.com/