Category Archives: Snacks and Apps

Roasted Squash and Tahini Dip or Spread

We are far away from the hurricane that’s raging tonight, but our thoughts have been on the storm all day.   Our East Coast family and friends are drenched but well, and the storm gave us the gift of my sister- and brother-in-law stranded with us for an extra day after their flight home was cancelled.  I hope that you and yours have fared as well.  (I’ve been seeing the photos of flooding and fires and hospital evacuations, though, so on top of just hoping that everyone is well I also made a donation to the American Red Cross.)

I’m thankful to be warm and dry tonight, and to have my big family gathered around the table for dinner.  It’s getting to be the season for cozy holiday meals, and, as always, I aim to equip you with a bountiful table of vegetarian and vegan options. Continue reading

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Creamy White Bean Dip or Spread

With the holidays right around the corner, it’s a good time to have a few secretly-healthier foods in mind to sneak onto the table alongside the traditional fare.  This white bean puree works equally well as a spread for crostini or as a dip for crackers and veggies, and its creamy texture belies the fact that it’s just a fancy (and still vegan) alternative to hummus. Continue reading

How to Make Applesauce

I have a book in which I record, from time to time, the big and small adventures in our family’s life.  I mean to write in it every day, just a sentence or two.  More often, weeks or even months go by between entries.  I try to catch the important stuff, though, when I do sit down to write–milestones and anecdotes from our daughters’ lives, travels we want to remember, loving moments with our extended family.  And, of course, what’s happening in the kitchen.Our family’s book begins with applesauce.  It was an October when I started the family journal (abandoning, in the process, my girls’ individual baby books) and we had just turned our three trees worth of apples into a year’s worth of applesauce.  So in a way, I think of making applesauce as the beginning of each new year.  At this time of year I often flip back through the years contained in my book and marvel at how fast life changes.  And how each chapter is even better than the last.

Applesauce, though, is a constant in our lives.  Every year we lighten the groaning branches of the apple trees in the fall, piling box after box of apples into the house.  We sort the apples, setting aside the unblemished best for eating and sharing.  We eat and bake and dry as many apples as we can.  And the rest become applesauce for the year ahead. Continue reading

Green Olive and Celery Salad

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Here’s a funny little thing, while we’re eating bits and bobs this week.  Not quite a salad, not quite a relish, full of flavor and crunch and brine and pop.

I found it via Lottie + Doof, where Tim says he found it in a Sicilian cookbook.  It’s kind of weird.  Whatever.  It’s great.We scooped spoonfuls onto the baguette rounds we ate alongside our shakshuka the other day.  I had a little pile of it beside my sandwich.  I daresay it could go right into a sandwich of the right sort quite happily.  Or serve it as part of an antipasto spread, of course.  Or just with a fork. Continue reading

Caramelized Onion Hummus

I see, scrolling down the page here, that I haven’t been feeding you anything too substantial lately.  A little of this, a little of that.  A few different kinds of bites cobbled together can make a meal, though.  Especially when of the little bowls on the table is a bowl of hummus.This caramelized onion hummus is light and a little sweet.  It’s addictive by itself but it also keeps nice company with a spread of tzatziki, tomato jam, and a pile of pita bread.  A salad on the side–hopefully a Greek salad, in these last days of good tomatoes and peppers–and dinner is served.  If you want to get fancy, serve a few stuffed grape leaves as well.

Now is a time that you’ll be happy to have cooked chickpeas on hand.  If you don’t, start a pot now or open and drain a can.  If you have caramelized onions defrosted from the freezer, you can have this dip on the table in five minutes.  Otherwise give yourself an hour and five minutes to allow time to cook those onions nice and slow before you make this otherwise-quick dish. Continue reading

Green Olive Cream Cheese

I like to cook, but I love it even more when people feed me.  We had dinner at a friend’s house recently and devoured a pile of peppers stuffed with a mixture of green olives and cream cheese.  This morning I spent three minutes making a bowl myself and ate it for breakfast scooped onto sweet pepper slices.  I suppose it would be fine on a bagel instead, if that’s your thing.  Or spread onto whole wheat bread for a veggie sandwich.  Or piped into celery sticks.  Or served with crackers at a party.  Or…I’m going to have to make another bowl.

If you got to choose, would you want to cook or being cooked for?

Continue reading

Chilled Beet and Yogurt Soup

I know, I know.

I was posting hot soup recipes in July and August and now that it’s October I’m coming at you with a cold one.  I’m untraditional like that.  Let’s roll with it.

This is a beet lover’s beet soup.  And while I’m exactly not a beet lover anymore, I still speak the language.  And as beet preparations for non-beet-lovers go, this one has a lot to recommend it.  The beet’s sweet earthiness is tamed a bit here by the tang of yogurt and lemon.  And there are only five ingredients.  And oh, the color.  Continue reading