Coconut Rice

Yum. This rice is rich, *and* has hidden veggies – I’m calling that a win-win.

gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan

Coconut Rice

1 c basmati rice

1 can coconut milk

2 tsp rice vinegar

2 tsp soy sauce or coconut aminos

Juice + zest of 1 lime

2 tsp neutral oil

2 tsp mirin (optional)

Generous sprinkle salt & pepper

1 c zucchini, grated

Combine and cook how you normally cook rice – I did mine on the “rice” setting of my electric cooker. Mix in the raw grated zucchini and serve.

Serves 4 – 6 and goes great with next week’s recipe

Mediterranean Spiced Hash

This deeply-spiced potato hash is great for a quick weeknight dinner – or as the centerpiece of a nice brunch. Serve with eggs, chicken, sausages, or leftover shawarma meat for a nice protein boost.

gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan

Mediterranean Spiced Hash

3 small yellow potatoes, chopped fine

2 big hand fulls okra (or asparagus, or green beans – whichever you can find), sliced into rounds

Big hand full cherry tomatoes, halved

1 small cucumber, chopped fine

Big hand parsley, chopped fine

1 red onion, diced (about 1/3 c)

Neutral oil

Stock or water + chicken flavoring (I used Magic Sarap)

4 Tbsp zaatar

2 tsp sumac or lemon powder

2 tsp cumin

1 Tbsp smoked or sweet paprika

1 Tbsp garlic powder

Salt & pepper

Squeeze lemon juice

In a large pan over medium/medium-high, heat a couple turns oil. Add the potatoes and onion once chopped and sauté until beginning to soften, cutting the heat down if things start to get too brown.

Add the okra (or other veg) and stir a minute or so.

Add 1/4 c of the stock or seasoned water. Stir.

Add all the spices + generous lashes of salt and pepper.

Stir frequently, adding more water if your mix dries out and starts to burn, until the potatoes are cooked through and your okra de-slimes. Your potatoes will look super spiced and a sort of gravy will form. This is what you want.

To finish, toss with the cucumber, parsley and tomato. Taste and hit with a little lemon juice, salt or pepper if needed.

Serves 3 – 4, depending upon what you pair it with

Basil Curry Comfort Rice

This is like a green hug in a bowl. Coconutty, silky, and freakin addictive. This was all I ate until the bowl ran dry. Bonus: it was hands-off to make.

gluten-free

Basil Curry Comfort Rice

1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, chopped

1 bunch basil leaves, divided into 2 piles

5 cloves garlic, chopped

1 inch knob fresh ginger, minced

2 jalapeños, seeded or not and minced

1 yellow onion, chopped

1 bunch broccolini, chopped

1 carrot, chopped

1 can coconut milk

1 c. (ish) your favorite stock (I added a bouillon cube to the pot + 1 fill of the empty coconut milk can of water)

1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce (check your labels!)

1 Tbsp. fish sauce (check your labels!)

1/2 c. your favorite rice (I used unwashed sushi rice)

1/2 tsp. black pepper

1/2 tsp. cardamom

1/2 tsp. chili powder

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. turmeric

1/2 tsp. cumin

Generous salt & pepper

Add everything but half the basil & the broccolini to the bowl of your slow cooker. Slow cook on “soup” for 1 hour.

At the :35 minute mark, add the broccolini.

In 10 – 15 more mins, add the second half of the basil (I chopped this half, intending to fish out the whole pieces but it turned out not to be necessary).

Let that go another 5 minutes and pull the whole thing.

Serves 4 – 6 depending on your self control around ricey comfort dishes

Salsa Shrimp Pasta Salad

This is a fresh, crunchy and satisfying salad perfect for when the mercury is hovering in the punishing zone and you don’t want to be bothered with having to face a hot dinner.

gluten-free, pescatarian

Salsa Shrimp Pasta Salad

1 lb. peeled and deveined shrimp, boiled and chopped

2 cucumbers, chopped

1 jalapeño, deseeded if desired and minced

1 smallish red onion, chopped

1/2 c. your favorite salsa – fresh or jarred; I went jarred

1 avocado, chopped

Juice of 2 limes

1/2 box chickpea pasta, cooked to al dente and drained

2 tsp. cumin

2 tsp. garlic powder

2 tsp. chili powder (or chipotle powder)

Generous sprinkle salt, pepper & red pepper flakes

Cherry tomatoes and chopped scallions for garnish if you’ve got either

Boil your pasta to al dente and drain. Set in a large bowl.

Peel and de-vein the shrimp; boil to cook. Drain and set to cool.

Chop the veggies and add to the pasta bowl.

Chop the shrimp into thirds when cool. Add to the bowl.

Add the salsa, spices, avocado, lime juice. Toss well. Taste for seasoning and add a little more if necessary.

Top with the garnishes and serve. I ended up sprinkling all but the first serving with a little more pepper and flaky finishing salt and that was about perfect.

Serves 4

Hot Honey Chicken Bowl

This is a great one to keep in your back pocket. This chicken is [fire] and would be fantastic in a cold summer salad (I’m thinking a mandarin affair), or a quick stir fry. Yum.

gluten-free

Hot Honey Chicken Bowl

Chicken:

1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into cubes

2 tsp. garlic powder

2 Tbsp. cornstarch or arrowroot powder

1 tsp. cayenne pepper

Generous salt & pepper

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1/4 c. honey

2 Tbsp. sambal olek

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 tsp. lemon juice

1 Tbsp. soy sauce or coconut aminos

More salt, pepper, cayenne & red pepper flakes

Bowl:

1-2 zucchini, cut into moons & air fried until nice and brown with a little salt, pepper & oil

2 carrots, shredded

1 avocado, chopped

2c. quinoa or cous cous cooked in broth with salt & pepper

Juice & zest of 2 limes

Sauce:

1/4 c. your favorite yogurt (I used a thick Skyr-style soy)

1 tsp. lemon juice

1 Tbsp. ranch seasoning powder

Hand full of chopped chives or scallions to garnish

Chop the chicken into bite-sized pieces and toss with the garlic powder, cornstarch/arrowroot powder, cayenne & a generous sprinkle salt & pepper. Blast with a little spray oil and air fry on 400 15 mins or until crispy and done (shaking and re-spraying a couple times through the cook time).

In a medium bowl, combine the olive oil, honey, sambal, minced garlic, lemon juice, soy sauce/coconut aminos and a generous sprinkle each of salt, pepper, red pepper flakes and cumin. Toss the chicken with the sauce and set aside.

Prep the grain bowl bottom and veggies.

Assemble as you wish.

Combine the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl, thinning out with a little water if you want a more pourable sauce.

Top with the scallions or chives.

Serves 4

Moroccan Tfaya Dressing

This is a sweetish, rich, luxe topping that can be used a bunch of different ways.

I’ve had this batch slathered onto bread, and used as a topper for a veggie-based couscous dish coming next week. In restaurants, I’ve had it as a sort of dip for roasted meats as well.

gluten-free, vegetarian

Moroccan Tfaya Dressing

1/2 cup golden raisins

3 small red onions, peeled and sliced thinly

2 Tbsp butter

2 Tbsp honey

1/2 cup water

Generous amount black pepper

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp ground ginger

1 tsp ground turmeric

Generous pinch salt

Pinch saffron threads

Slice the onions thinly and add to a pot over medium heat. Add the rest of the ingredients (minus the saffron) and simmer :30 – 1:00 or until the onions are on their way to breaking up and the liquid has reduced to a thick syrup. Add the saffron in the last 10-15 minutes.

Serve over next week’s couscous dish, slathered on bread, as a dip for meats or tossed into scrambled eggs.

Serves 4 – 6

Gochujang Chicken Stir Fry

I love Gochujang. This is a quick to throw together dinner that manages to be low calorie and packed with flavor.

gluten-free* (check your Gochujang label!)

Gochujang Chicken Stir Fry

1 lb. ground chicken

1 large carrot, diced

1 bell pepper (any color), chopped

1.5 c snap peas (tipped and halved)

1.5 Tbsp gochujang

1 tsp sambal olek

2 Tbsp soy sauce or coconut aminos

1 Tbsp sesame oil

1 Tbsp rice vinegar

1 Tbsp garlic powder

2 tsp cornstarch

2 tsp honey

2 tsp butter

Sesame seeds

A little oil

Chop the veggies and set aside. In a large pan over medium high heat, warm a couple teaspoons oil.

Add the chicken and carrots. Stir fry until the chicken is brown and the carrots are just beginning to soften.

While the chicken is working, whisk the sauce ingredients (the rest of the ingredients except for the sesame seeds and butter) together in a small bowl. set aside.

When the chicken is ready, add the pepper and snap peas and continue to stir fry until the veggies are done to just about your liking.

Add the sauce and continue cooking a minute or two, stirring frequently, to combine fully. Add the butter and stir until it melts.

Serve with rice (or not). Garnish with sesame seeds.

Serves 4

Tunisian Spiced Salad

This is a nice little salad that can be bulked up for a good dinner or served light for a refreshing lunch.

gluten-free, paleo

Tunisian Spiced Salad

Dressing:

1 shallot, minced

2 Tbsp fruity vinegar (I used plum)

1 Tbsp Dijon mustard

2 tsp Ras el Hanout

2 tsp honey

1 Tbsp pomegranate molasses

4 Tbsp oil (olive or neutral)

Large pinches Salt & pepper

Salad:

1 large carrot, ribboned

1 package baby spinach

1/4 c slivered almonds

1 large mango, skinned and cut into bite sized cubes

Protein of choice (I used rotisserie chicken)

Whisk all dressing ingredients in the bottom of a large bowl. Toss the salad ingredients into the bowl as you prep and mix well.

Serve with protein of your choice, or to bulk out – add your favorite grain (Cous cous, bulgur or farro would be great).

Serves 4

Carrot Salad with Hibachi-Style Ginger Dressing

This dressing tastes surprisingly just like that served at hibachi restaurants.

gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan, paleo

Hibachi-Style Ginger Dressing

2 large carrots

5 Tbsp your favorite oil

2 scallions

1 date

3 Tbsp your favorite fruity vinegar (I used ume plum)

2 Tbsp pineapple juice (I suspect orange would work well, too)

1/3 c Kewpie mayo

1 inch ginger

1 Tbsp Dijon mustard

Generous pinch salt & pepper

Water to thin if needed

Blitz all dressing ingredients together, thinning out with a little water if necessary.

A Salad To Go With It

1 – 2 carrots, ribboned

1 red bell pepper, chopped

1 huge hand full green beans, chopped

3 smallish Persian cucumbers, diced

2 scallions, chopped

1 avocado, chopped

Toppers: sesame seeds, flaky salt, pepper, sambal or other spice

The dressing serves 6 or so; the salad makes enough for 3 – 4 dinners when supplemented with a protein

Sunshine Shrimp Chopped Salad

This is an addictive little hit of Summer sun in a bowl; perfect for those mid-Winter blues.

gluten-free, paleo, pescatarian

Sunshine Shrimp Chopped Salad

Protein

1 – 1.5 lb peeled and deveined shrimp

Juice of 2 oranges

3 Tbsp salt

1/2 yellow onion, chopped rough

2 cloves garlic, chopped rough

Hand full cilantro

3 c water

First, poach your shrimp in the mix above a couple minutes or until cooked through. Remove. If your shrimp were frozen and pre-cooked like mine, heat till warmed through. You’ll still get a bit of that delicious poaching liquid taste. It’s fine.

Dressing

4 Tbsp cashew butter

1 tsp your favorite sweetener (I used date molasses)

1 tsp rice vinegar

1 tsp lemon juice

1-2 tsp sambal olek

1 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp onion powder

Sprinkle salt & pepper

Salad Base

Couple hand fulls green beans per serving, cut in thirds and poached in the shrimp liquid until crisp-tender

1/2 avocado per serving

1/2 – whole segmented and chopped orange per serving

6-10 cherry tomatoes, halved, per serving

Sprinkle soy

Sprinkle sesame seeds

Sprinkle flaky salt

How many this serves depends on how starving you are – this *could* serve 2 for lunch as written, or just a really hungry me. You do you