Fresh Tomato Gazpacho

Fresh Tomato Gazpacho

I get antsy during tomato season if I don’t have a satisfactory number of local tomatoes in my house at all times. It’s a short season and the alternative during the rest of the year is so sad in comparison that I feel tremendous pressure to make the very most of one of my favourite food seasons (and yet I feel close to no pressure for so many seemingly more important things…).

Fresh Tomato Gazpacho

So, short of the Spanish Tomatina Festival, tomatoes have been on, in, under and around everything that has been happening in the kitchen these days. Usually just salad like the Avocado Caprese or this one from last summer with avo croutons, but as you saw last week, there has also been pasta.

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Artichoke & White Bean ‘Ravioli’

Artichoke and White Bean 'Ravioli'

There isn’t a lot that is better than homemade pasta. I have a hand-crank pasta maker and occasionally make it at home, but it keeps a pretty solid layer of dust on it most of the year. Part of the problem is it’s easy to be lazy about pasta-making when the healthy alternative is just so damn easy.

Artichoke and White Bean 'Ravioli'

Zucchini, the ultimate peasant food, the vegetable that (almost) anyone can not only grow, but grow to the size of their car, somehow makes a really good whole-food pasta substitute.

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Beet & Lentil Hummus

Beet and Lentil Hummus

I often order from the ‘sides’ part of the menu when I go out for dinner. That’s where you usually find the good guys (and the French fries…); sautéed spinach, roasted carrots, green beans, Brussels sprouts etc.

Beet and Lentil Hummus

What I wish though, was that more restaurants (and not just the healthy and/or plant-based ones) gave these simple veggie sides the muscle to help them stand alone as main courses. Some roasted chickpeas, an ancient whole grain, something to help it all stick a little better.

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Avocado & Black Bean Salad

Avocado & Black Bean Salad

Sometimes I reeeeeally don’t’ feel like making dinner. When I’m by myself, that’s ok, lazy guacamole with veggies, almond butter on basically anything, a homemade jar of soup pulled from the freezer, or sometimes even just this (ridiculously good) Turmeric Popcorn to go along with the movie that my husband refuses to watch with me. It’s actually kind of awesome.

Avocado & Black Bean Salad

But when I’m cooking for more than just me, I know these options won’t fly and I can’t do delivery because it’s a grim scene in my neighbourhood. This salad was born out of those lazy nights, trying to disguise easy food as exciting and special food (it can definitely be both, sshhhhh).

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