As we celebrate all things fall with seasonal produce inspired recipes, we can't help but feel bad for the less "popular" vegetable crops. We think it's about time we invite them to fall recipe party. Take parsnip for example, an easily forgotten root vegetable that almost looks and tastes like a carrot, but isn't....
Though not a carrot, parsnips are a closely related root vegetable but have a pale color and more mild taste. Parsnips are also starchier than carrots which lend them better to cooked preparations similar to the potato. Then why choose parsnip over potato or carrot? Because v-a-r-i-e-t-y is the basis of a well-rounded, wholesome, and nourishing diet. Every plant provides its own unique profile of nutrients that we can benefit from, especially if we vary the type of foods eaten week to week and season to season. Specifically, parsnip provides double the amount of fiber per serving than potato - definitely an added bonus for a food not generally considered "healthy," fries. Though we gave them a healthier spin with the use of parsnip and a baked (not fried) preparation.
Parsnip Greek Fries
PREP TIME: 5 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 35 minutes (includes roasting time)
1 Tbsp ghee, melted
2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1/4 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp sea salt (reserve 1/8 tsp to sprinkle over the top once out of the oven)
2 oz feta cheese
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Preheat oven to 450 degrees and line a large baking pan with parchment paper. Wash parsnips then use a vegetable peeler to peel off outer skin. Cut parsnips into long skinny sticks. Toss parsnips with melted ghee and sprinkle with 1/8 tsp sea salt. Roast in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, stirring once for even cooking. Adjust oven to the broiler setting and broil fries for ~2 minutes until golden brown and crispy. Remove fries from the oven, sprinkle with remaining 1/8 tsp sea salt, chopped parsley, dried oregano, feta, and lemon juice. Toss fries until evenly coated then serve immediately. Fries taste best hot and crispy right out of the oven. Enjoy!
If these pictures aren't enough to persuade you let us explain that these fries are the perfect combination of salty and sweet thanks to the subtly sweet parsnip. The lemon and herbs brighten each bite rounded by a richness from the feta. This recipe is truly not to be missed. After you've tried it, we hope you agree that it's about time to invite parsnips to your party.
Jess and Cecelia
It is apple picking season and you know what that means, an abundance of apples! If you're like us there is no such thing as self control when there are so many varieties of fresh from the tree, local apples to choose from. With that being said, we have to get creative in ways to use all these apples. Apple slices with nut butter will always be a favorite but we love finding new and exciting ways to enjoy this fabulous fall fruit. It's also interesting how different varieties lend themselves to different types of recipes depending on their flavor profile. For this recipe (which is also a unique use of oatmeal might we add), a tart apple variety worked perfect for the bottom of the bake and a sweeter apple for the raw slices on top. So pick your favorites and let's get to it!
Baked Apple Oatmeal
PREP TIME: 30 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 90 minutes
2 1/2 cup rolled oats
1 cup unsweetened toasted shaved coconut
1 cup chopped walnuts
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
2 flax eggs (2 Tbsp ground flax seeds mixed with 4 Tbsp water + 2 Tbsp ginger juice)
1 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla soy milk (or milk alternative of your choice)
1/2 cup no sugar added apple sauce
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
2 Tbsp melted coconut oil + 1 tsp to oil the pan
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large tart apples, chopped into 1"x 1" pieces (~3 cups)
1 small sweet apple, sliced thin (optional topping)
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly grease a 9"X9" glass pan with coconut oil. Wash and chop apples into 1"x1" squares and place in the bottom of the prepared pan.
In a large bowl combine oats, toasted coconut, chopped walnuts, ground cinnamon, and baking powder then mix well until combined.
In a separate bowl whisk flax seeds with water and ginger juice and let sit for about 5 minutes or until gelatinous. Add soy milk, apple sauce, maple syrup, melted coconut oil, and vanilla extract to the flax seed eggs and whisk until combined. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and stir until combined. Spread oatmeal mixture over the chopped apples making sure they are fully covered. Place pan in preheated oven and bake for 60 minutes. Remove oatmeal from the oven, allow to set and slightly cool for ~5 minutes. Layer top with apple slices if desired and enjoy!
Oatmeal is great by itself, on top of yogurt or ice cream, or in a bowl with additional milk. Leftover oatmeal can be stored in an air tight container in the fridge and reheated in the microwave for 60 seconds or placed back in a preheated oven at 325 degrees for 10-12 minutes. Oatmeal will keep in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Though this recipe may look unassuming, it tastes SO good. The warm baked apples meld perfectly with the hearty oatmeal and finish with a fresh crunch of sweet apple topping. Can be enjoyed for breakfast/brunch though may be best enjoyed over vanilla ice cream for dessert (wink, wink).
Any way you choose - enjoy,
Jess and Cecelia
A whole new season of recipes is upon us here in Chicago and we can barely contain our excitement. And why should we!? The abundance of fall produce has sparked our creativity as we dream up hearty and festive ways to utilize the new ingredients. One of our ultimate fall favorites, squash. With so many varieties to choose from the recipe ideas are almost endless. We decided to start with something simple and familiar. A recipe that lends itself to your favorite squash variety. We used butternut for our hummus but know that the recipe would be just as great with acorn squash or pumpkin. We look forward to a fun filled fall with you!
Spicy Squash Hummus
PREP TIME: 35-40 mins
TOTAL TIME: 45 mins
1 can organic chick peas
1 cup cooked squash (we used butternut squash)
1/4 cup tahini paste
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil + 1 tsp drizzled on top
1 Tbsp sriracha sauce + 1 tsp drizzled on top
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut butternut squash in half, lengthwise then place on a parchment lined baking sheet and roast for 35-40 minutes or until inside is soft. Scoop out the inside of the squash and place in a bowl to the side to cool to room temperature. Combine chick peas, 1 cup cooled squash, tahini, olive oil, sriracha, garlic, cumin, and salt in a blender and process on high until a smooth hummus is formed. Scoop out hummus into a bowl or platter and drizzle with additional olive oil and sriracha. Hummus can be made a day ahead and stored in the fridge in an air tight container. Any left overs can be stored in an air tight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
The squash addition makes this hummus SO creamy and provides a stunning pop of color. Though the flavor is mild and similar to traditional hummus, exactly why we decided to mix it up with a spicy ingredient. And don't forget about the extra nutrients (specifically vitamin A - more on that coming in another post this season) that you'll get by adding this simple, seasonal ingredient.
Jess and Cecelia
Jess and Cecelia welcome you to our kitchen. We are fun-loving and passionate foodies working to make the world a healthier, happier place one plant based recipe at a time.