Peruvian-style Pesto Pasta

Although recent, the Italian influence on Peruvian cuisine is undeniably strong. Italians arrived in Peru at the beginning of the 20th century, and as soon as they set foot in their new land they started doing what they knew best: cooking. Peruvians were immediately seduced by the refreshing ways in which these newcomers used all kinds of vegetables to prepare their simple yet novel dishes.

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Tofu Soba Noodles (Buckwheat Soba, Tofu With Carrot Miso Lime Dressing)

This tofu soba noodles is a little bit warm, a little bit chilled, and completely delicious. The tofu, tasting lightly of soy sauce and the grill; the soba salad with its buckwheat noodles and crispy vegetables; the traditional Japanese tamago omelet seasoned with rice wine and sugar is all brought together by our tangy Carrot Miso Lime Dressing. The tofu pressing, the dressing, the tamago, and the noodles can easily be done in advance. Then, just before you are ready to serve, simply do a quick grilling of the tofu and the baby corn, and you’ve got a perfect summer meal.

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Spanish White Gazpacho

White gazpacho is a classic Spanish chilled soup. A little sweet, a little tart, yet quite mild, it’s simple and satisfying. And it’s great for a summer supper. This version isn’t a truly ancient Ajo Blanco- ( ajo or aji means garlic). It’s an entry level white gazpacho riff that’s family friendly fare. Lots of little kids to serve? Double the honey. Want a fun garnish and have an extra 30 minutes? Cut the grapes in half and freeze before making the soup; then top the soup with grapes just before serving. Want to serve a more discerning crowd? Add 12 cloves of roasted garlic, a tablespoon of parchingly dry sherry and omit the honey.

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Strawberry Frangipane Tart

This tart is filled with luscious frangipane—a traditional nut pastry filling—and crowned with fresh fruit. We’ve used seasonal strawberries, but this tart works with virtually any fruit. Find the juiciest, ripest, sexiest seasonal fruit you can. Honestly, just be gentle with the crust, have fun with frangipane and you simply can’t go wrong.

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Peach Buttermilk Ice Cream

Love tart frozen yogurt? Looking for a way to use up those ripe and juicy peaches? This is the recipe for you. Both components—the ice cream base and the peach swirl that runs through it—will need time to chill, so make a game plan. Mix up the base and chill for at least 24 hours. You can roast and chill the peach swirl while you chill the ice cream base; it will need at least 8 hours of chilling time, but more won’t hurt it. Once the base is chilled and spinning in your ice cream maker, simply add the peach swirl in the last 5 minutes, give a twirl, and it’s ready to eat as a soft-serve. Or freeze for 2 to 3 hours until it’s solid, for hard scoops o’ yum.

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Vegan Avocado Pesto Pasta

This rich raw avocado sauce is both light and hearty. It’s also very flexible and may be served with all kinds of fresh vegetables, including corn, radishes, green tomatoes, fresh peas, pea shoots, carrots.

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Pasta With Wild Mushroom, Tomato and Eggplant Sauce

This luscious vegan linguine is easy to halve, easy to double for a crowd, and easy to love. It takes a while to cook but it’s mostly hands off—and the sauce tastes better the second day. I served it over a frittata and grilled fish to great accolades. Eggplant prep is polarizing: some cooks salt before cooking and rinse; others eschew this step. Some even soak it in milk to reduce any natural bitterness. Eggplants have been cultivated to be less bitter over time. Notwithstanding that, I am a salter. I love that it softens and starts the “cooking,” or denaturing process, which helps prevents undercooked eggplant. If you are a salter, too, allow an hour to salt the eggplant before you begin cooking. See Kitchen Tips for a full discussion of the eggplant conundrum.

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Chewy Oatmeal Cookie Bars

These chewy and delicious homemade cookie bars are great for cooking with kids. Let them use their (clean) hands to mix the dough and flatten it in the pan. It’s like working with safely edible playdough! These dairy-free bars were designed to be the base for a homemade dairy-free ice cream sandwich, but they were so darn good, we kept eating them alone. Chock full of nuts and grains, they’re loaded with nutrition.

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