When I returned to work after my maternity leave, I joined a locally based team that I often refer as my boss babes. Our entire leadership team was female and I loved every second of it. We used to eat lunch together most days, and one of the fan favorites was P.F. Changs. My cubemate, Megan, always ordered Vegetable Fried Rice and Spicy Green Beans, one day I tried some of it and from that moment forward I was also addicted. So I set out to make the green beans on my own.
Serves: 4 Time: 30 minutes
Ingredients: Tofu: 1 block of extra firm tofu, pressed and drained (this takes 30 min so be sure to prep this before starting to cook) 1 tsp of toasted sesame oil 2 Tbs canola oil 1/2 cup corn starch 2-3 Tbs of canola oil
Green Beans: 1 lb of trimmed fresh green beans 2 cloves garlic, pressed 2 Tbs finely chopped fresh ginger 1 Tbs of chili garlic paste 3 green onions, finely chopped 2 Tbs soy sauce 1 Tbs toasted sesame oil 1 Tbs seasoned rice vinegar 1 tsp brown sugar 1 Tbs crushed red pepper flakes 1/4 cup water
Directions: 1. Cube tofu and add to a mixing bowl, add in 2 Tbs of canola oil and sesame oil. Use a rubber spatula to gently stir the tofu so it’s coated in the oil. Next add the corn starch and toss the tofu to coat. You want the corn starch/oil to look gooey 2. Next heat the remaining canola oil in a large fry pan over medium high heat heat, add the tofu and arrange so it’s in one layer. Let it fry in the oil for about 5 minutes, then flip it every few minutes so all sides develop a golden brown crust (be sure to continue to check on these, and if they turn golden before everything else is down, just remove from the oil) 3. Meanwhile, add another 2 Tbs of canola oil to a heavy bottom fry pan or wok on medium high heat, add the green beans (this will splatter and likely set off your fire alarm, so have your fan going, windows open, and take caution lol) 4. While the green beans sear, mix together the soy sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar, sugar, red pepper flakes and water. 5. Continue sautéing the green beans for about 4 minutes, next add the chili garlic paste, garlic, ginger, and green onions cook about another minute or two, until fragrant. 6. Next add the sauce, stir to coat the green beans and let the sauce cook down by about half then add the tofu. Stir to coat and serve by itself or with your favorite rice
I have so many memories of waking up to the smell of browning butter and blenukas. My Nana lives on a beautiful ranch in Southern California. Whenever we visit, she makes these for us. We awake to the scent of freshly squeeze orange juice from oranges and tangerines that she picked straight from her garden, strong coffee brewing away, and when we emerge there is always a bowl of sparkling berries and blenukas on the table. My mother also made these for all my friends when I was younger and we had sleep overs. No one could pronounce them, but everyone loved them.
Blenukas (pronounced bleh-nuh-kas)
Time: 10 minutes Serves: 3-4
Ingredients: 2 eggs 1/2 Tbs melted butter 1/2 cup of milk 1/2 cup of flour Dash of salt More butter for the pan
Directions: 1. Whisk eggs til well beaten, next add in melted butter and milk, and whisk until well incorporated 2. Next add the flour and salt, and whisk until well incorporated 3. Melt a little bit of butter in an extra large fry pan over medium heat, pour enough batter into the pan to cover the bottom, ensuring to tilt the pan to cover all sides. Cook 2-4 minutes, until the bottom of the blenuka starts to brown then flip and cook an additional minute or so
Serve these however you’d like. Sweet. Savory. You could even make a Blenuka Bar, and put a bunch of toppings out for your kids to make their own creation! The sky is the limit.
Meatless gluten free dairy free (if you want it to be!) Prep: 5 min Cook: 55 min Total: 1 hour Serves: 4-6 Ingredients: 1 cup green lentils 1 spaghetti squash Drizzle of olive oil 2 cups water 1 clove garlic, smashed 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes 1 tsp paprika 1 tsp onion powder 1 bay leaf 1 jar @carfagnasmarket original pasta sauce Directions: 1. Preheat the oven to 375 meanwhile Sift through lentils to discard small ones and any rocks in the batch, then soak in cold water for about 20 min 2. Cut the spaghetti squash in half lengthwise, scoop out seeds, drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper. Place face side down on baking sheet and bake for 45-60 min depending on size and texture you prefer 3. After the lentils are done soaking, rinse them thoroughly in a colander, then add lentils, 2 cups water, garlic red pepper, paprika, onion powder, and bay leaf to a sauce pan, bring to a boil and immediately turn down to a simmer, cook for about 15 minutes and test every 2 min after that to check for fineness, you want the lentil to be slightly chewy not mushy 4. Drain lentils, then in the same sauce pan, add @carfagnasmarket original pasta sauce, return lentils to sauce pan. Heat on medium/low heat and stir til warm 5. Remove spaghetti squash from oven and use a fork to shred it. To plate, take some spaghetti squash, top with pasta sauce/lentil mixture, and add cheese and parsley if you’d like 🙌🏼
The easiest most delicious recipe for green beans Serves: 2-4 Time: 8 min Ingredients: 1 lb, fresh trimmed green beans 1 Tbs butter Water Garlic salt, pepper Directions: 1. Add green beans to a large fry pan, add enough water so bottom is covered but green beans are not submerged, add butter and heat over high heat and cover 2. After about 6ish minutes, check fineness, you want them to be still al dente, the uncover and stir occasionally until water evaporates, add salt and pepper and toss Serve as a side, chop them up for your kiddos, or keep them in the fridge to snack on throughout the week. If you’re really in a pinch for time, consider steaming these in the bag in the microwave, then sauté the with butter, garlic salt, and pepper for a few minutes.
Last year, our dear friends Collin and Amata, flew home from Portland and hosted a group of friends at their parents house. The theme was make your own spring rolls, and let me tell you, it was probably the best dinner party we’ve been to. I’ve always made spring rolls, but never in party fashion. I absolutely recommend it.
Serves: 2-4 Time: 30 min (minus pressing tofu for 30) Ingredients: 1 block firm tofu pressed 2 Tbs hoisin sauce 2 Tbs soy sauce 2 Tbs sweet Thai chili sauce Juice of 1/2 lime 1 tsp fish sauce 1 Tbs sriracha 1 red pepper, thinly sliced 1/4 red onion thinly sliced 1 cucumber thinly sliced length wise 1 jalapeño thinly sliced 1 bunch of cilantro 1 serving size of rice noodles (I use vermicelli) Packet of rice paper wrappers Directions: 1. Slice tofu into thin svtrips then Mix together, hoisin, soy sauce, sweet Thai chili sauce, lime juice, fish sauce and sriracha. In a shallow bowl add tofu and pour marinade. Let set for about 15 min (no longer than 45 min) 2. Prepare rice noodles based on packaging directions 3. Meanwhile, begin slicing all your veggies, you want julienned strips (see pic) 4. Once tofu is ready, either fry in 2 Tbs of canola oil for about 10-15 min (til almost charred) or add to air fryer on 390 degrees for 15 min 5. Now time to assemble, dip the rice paper wrapper in warm water, then start adding everything you’d like into the middle, leaving about an inch or so on all sides, then roll it up like a burrito. Voila! Give it a go! So delish and healthy too.
If the descriptive title has you drooling, just wait til you taste it.
Time: 1 hour 15m Serves: 6 Ingredients: Gnocchi: 2 medium sweet potatoes 1/2 cup ricotta cheese 1 egg Salt/pepper 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper 3-4 cups of all purpose flour – you want mixture to be slightly sticky Sauce: 3 Tbs butter 1 shallot, thinly sliced 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper 1/2 cup chopped sage 1 cup white wine Spiced pecans 2 cups pecans 1/2 cup powdered sugar 1 tsp cayenne pepper 3/4 tsp salt 4 tsp water Directions: 1. Bake sweet potatoes whole by poking them with a fork and baking at 425 for about 45-50 minutes 2. Next mix the sugar, pepper, salt, and water in a separate bowl, add pecans and stir to coat. Pour onto parchment lined baking and sheet and Bake at 375 for 15 minutes, let cool and break apart 3. In the meantime, melt butter over medium heat and add shallots. Once butter begins to brown add cayenne and sage. Sauté for about a minute and add wine (be careful it’ll splatter), and turn to low to continue to simmer 4. Bring a pot of water to a boil, and next mix the gnocchi ingredients together in a separate bowl, adding flour 1 cup at a time til mixture is sticky but rollable 5. Next divide gnocchi dough into about 5 smaller balls, then one ball at a time roll it into a snake on a floured service, then cut into small rectangles, drop in the boiling water and once they rise to the top transfer to sauce. Continue this process in batches til all the gnocchi are in the sauce Serve with shaved Parmesan and top with crushed spiced Pecans. To make this a 30 minute meal, simply roast potatoes and make pecans early in the week. 💕
Enjoy these delicious meatless meatballs. It’s the perfect addition to any pasta.
Serves: 4 Time: 30 min Ingredients: 1/2 sweet onion, diced 3 cloves garlic minced 1 package white mushrooms minced 1/4 cup parsley, finely chopped 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese 1 egg 1/2 cup breadcrumbs 1 can chickpeas drained and rinsed 2 Tsp dried oregano Salt and pepper A pinch of cayenne 1 Tbs olive oil Dusting: 1/2 tsp cayenne 2 Tbs Parmesan 2 Tbs breadcrumbs Directions: 1. Preheat the oven to 375 and grease a baking sheet with olive oil 2. In a skillet sauté onion and mushrooms until pan is dry and onions are translucent, next add garlic and continue cooking til fragrant, about a minute and let cool 3. Mix the remainder of the ingredients with cooked onions, mushrooms, and garlic in a food processor, pulse until crumbly but not completely smooth, you def want texture to the mixture 4. Next mix dusting ingredients and roll out 1 inch balls, roll in dusting mixture, and place on baking sheet. Repeat until mixture is gone. Bake for 10 minutes flip over and bake an additional 10 minutes Serve with your favorite spaghetti and sauce (we like spaghetti squash and @carfagnasmarket original pasta sauce on ours) 🥰
30 minutes or less and #vegan Time: 30 min Serves: 6 Ingredients: 1 package @eatbanza pasta 1 package firm tofu, pressed 1 clove garlic, minced 1 Tbs olive oil 3 Tbs nutritional yeast 1 tsp oregano Juice of 1/2 lemon Salt and pepper A pinch of brown sugar or honey if not vegan Jar of @carfagnasmarket original pasta sauce 1/4 Parmesan cheese (if vegan use follow your heart parm) and a little more Directions: 1. Preheat oven to 375 and while it’s preheating cook pasta al dente by directions on box 2. At the same time add tofu, garlic, olive oil, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, salt/pepper, sugar/honey, and oregano to a food processor and blend until smooth (this is your vegan ricotta!) 3. Once the pasta has been drained and rinsed, add about 1 cup of ricotta mixture, 1/4 cup cheese, and 1.5 cups of pasta sauce to a mixing bowl, and combine, next add pasta and toss to coat 4. Next it’s time for layering. Add 1/2 the pasta mixture to 9×13 greased pan, dollop half the leftover ricotta, then cover with remaining pasta. Cover that with leftover pasta sauce, dollop the top of ricotta and dust with cheese. 5. Bake for 25 minutes, uncovered. Then serve!
So good you’ll eat a whole pizza in one sitting Serves: 12 Time: 1h15 if you make the dough, 30 min if you buy dough Ingredients: Pizza dough 1 cup water, heated to 110 degrees 1 Tbs olive oil 1 Tbs sugar 1 packet red star active dry yeast 2 cups whole wheat flour 3/4 cup all purpose flour 1/4 cup grated parmesan 1 Tsp salt Toppings: 1 head of roasted garlic or about 12 cloves 1 onion, diced 1 pint shiitake mushrooms, sliced 1 pint baby Bella mushrooms, sliced 1 pint cremini mushrooms, quartered 1 container of buffalo Mozzarella 1 cup low fat mozz 3 cups arugula 1/2 lemon, juiced 1 Tbs olive oil Salt and pepper
Directions: 1. Decide if you want to make or buy the dough ( you can just ask for whole wheat pizza dough at a deli counter), the recipe is easy, so ultimately up to you and your time. 2. Add the heated water to the sugar and oil, sprinkle packet of active dry yeast and let sit for about 10 minutes, in a separate bowl mix flours, cheese, and salt. 3. Add the dry mixture to wet mixture and mix on medium low speed with dough hook for 5 minutes, dough should be smooth at the end, add a little oil to bottom of bowl, cover with a dish towel, set in a warm place, and let rise for 60 minutes 4. Start here if you bought your dough! Or while your dough is rising, heat 1 Tbs of butter on medium heat and add onion, stirring occasionally for about 30 min til caramelized (add a little bit of water when the pan gets too dry) 5. In a separate pan cook the mushrooms on medium high heat, until the pan is dry 6. Once the dough has risen, punch down, cut in half and roll out dough each half to be as thin as possible 7. Preheat oven to 500 degrees 8. Once dough is rolled pre bake for about 3 minutes (it’ll puff up!) 9. Now time to assemble, smash garlic and spread over base, next add both the fresh and shredded mozz, top with mushrooms and onions, season with salt and pepper bake for 12 minutes on a sheet pan 10. While pizza is baking mix arugula with lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper 11. Slice pizza and top with arugula Yum!!
Did you know that store bought puff pastry is actually vegan? This vegetable flatbread is a perfect appetizer for the non meat eaters in your family. Serves: 4-6 (appetizer size) Time: 20 min Ingredients: 1 sweet onion, sliced thin Pint of cremini mushrooms, sliced 1 bunch of asparagus 1 zucchini, sliced into thin rounds 1 puff pastry from package thawed A few cloves of roasted garlic (you can buy roasted or if you have time roast it yourself) Directions: 1. Preheat oven to 425, while oven is preheating, fill a saucepan 1/2 way with water and salt, bring to a boil over high heat, next add asparagus and blanch for about 3 minutes, drain and run cold water over them 2. Next add 1 Tbs of butter to a fry pan and heat over medium heat. Add the onions and stir occasionally until the onions are caramelized, feel free to add some water if they pan gets dry 3. Once onions are cooking, take one more fry pan over medium heat, add mushrooms and cook until the pan is dry remove from pan then add zucchini and cook until pan is dry and remove 4. Now to assemble, roll out puff pastry so it’s a nice square. Next spread the roasted garlic on leaving about half an inch border, next evenly spread the caramelized onions, then arrange your zucchini, mushrooms, and asparagus. Season with salt and pepper and bake until crust is golden brown ( about 12 minutes) Slice and serve 🙌🏼