Crispy Eggplant + Orange Salad

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Shopping is an activity I detest.

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Unless I’m with my mother and she’s paying, of course.

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But honestly moms just have this innate skill that the Lord infuses in them the moment they conceive. They can choose clothes for their daughter that said daughter would never pick out herself and they turn out to be the daughter’s very favorite clothes.

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I’m simply lost without her shopping guidance. I spent three hours shopping for a dress this weekend. Three hours of my life I could have spent doing 1.8 million other things like bingeing a show, reading a book, exploring a new hobby, learning a new language, working on my excel spreadsheet of America’s top airports, etc. I went to NO JOKE 11 stores. Everything was either a frumpy sack on me or $300. I needed Susan there to dig through the sale bins & pull out the gem among the rocks. And isn’t it the MOST typical that I was shopping v specifically for a dress, so the world conspired against me to put nothing but adorable sweaters in my path? It’s cruel and unusual!

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So, the next best thing – I made her online shop for me & ordered a dress she picked out. Boom.

 

 

Time: 1 hour (prep + cooking) | Serves: 3-4

Ingredients:

  • 5-6 cups of arugula
  • 1 eggplant, peeled + cut into cubes
  • 1 cup of panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 tbsp. of flax meal
  • 1 cup of spinach
  • 1/4 cup of basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup of pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tbsp. of nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbsp. of garlic, minced
  • 1 cup of quinoa, cooked
  • 1 orange, cut into lil pieces
  • 1/2 cup of kalamata olives, cut in half
  • 1 shallot, sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup + 1 tbsp. of olive oil
  • 1 tsp. of crushed red pepper
  • S+P, to taste

How to:

  • Place eggplant cubes in a colander + sprinkle with some S, coating on the lil cubes – let water release + drain for about 30 minutes
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  • In a food processor, combine spinach + 1 cup of aurugla + basil + pumpkin seeds + nutritional yeast + garlic + S+P, process on low + slowly add in 1/2 cup of olive oil until well combined, refrigerate until ready to serve
  • Add flax meal + 1/2 cup of warm water to a bowl, set aside for a few minutes + add breadcrumbs to another bowl, add red pepper + some S+P to it
  • Pat dry the eggplant cubes, then a few cubes at a time, dip into flax egg bowl + then breadcrumbs, place on a lined baking sheet
  • Bake for 35-40 minutes, tossing once in the middle of cooking
  • Meanwhile, heat remaining olive oil in a lil skillet over medium heat
  • Add shallot + S+P, cook for 4-5 minutes
  • To serve, arrange some arugula on a plate + top with eggplant + quinoa + orange + olives + shallots + pesto
  • Get a bite of every lil component on your fork + do the same for your sweetie + wrap your arms around each other like you would with champagne + then feed each other until your arms fall asleep

Sushi Bowls

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I have a thing with sushi.

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And not in the normal, upper middle class female sort of way. Like, I can’t handle it.

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Don’t get me wrong. I used to love it. There is this fried sushi roll at this basic as heck place in Memphis that I used to TEAR UP.

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Right when we got to WA, we searched for the best sushi in town and FOUND IT. It was so dope. One night we went out and ordered no joke $100 worth of sushi and just gorged until we puked. No, really, I puked it all up. There is something about seaweed coming back up that just turns you off, ya know?? Since then, I have avoided the little round delights like the plague. But I don’t want to live this way forever! I dream of a world where I’m able to enter my sketchy sushi place in Memphis, dine on a tornado roll and not gag. These bowls were a step in the right direction. One lil sheet of seaweed cut in tiny strips. I only avoided 82% of the strips as I ate these bowls…

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And now I have four more sheets of the stuff & it gawks at me every time I open the pantry.

 

 

 

Time: 1 hour (prep + cooking) | Serves: 2-3

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of brown rice
  • 3 tbsp. of rice vinegar
  • 2 tsp. of soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp. of agave
  • 1 sheet of nori (seaweed)
  • 2 cups of edamame, cooked
  • 1 carrot, shredded with a veggie peeled
  • 1/2 an english cucumber, cut into matchsticks
  • 1 avocado, sliced thin
  • 1 tbsp. of vegan mayo
  • 1/2 a tbsp. of sriracha

How to:

  • Cook rice according to package directions
  • Meanwhile, heat rice vinegar + soy sauce + agave in a lil sauce pan over medium heat + cook until agave is dissolved
  • As rice is almost done cooking, add in vinegar mix + finish cooking
  • Meanwhile, combine mayo + sriracha + refrigerate until you’re ready to use
  • Meanwhile, toast nori in a dry skillet over low-medium heat, flipping once after about 3 minutes, remove + crumble into lil bits
  • To serve, put some rice in a bowl + top with nori bits + edamame + carrot + cucumber + avocado + some sriracha mayo, serve warm or chilled
  • Mix all of that goodness up, grab a pair of chopsticks + count how many chopstick lifts it takes you to finish this meal, my guess is 163

 

 

Adapted from here!

Braised Spinach + Chickpea Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

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Like, can we just not with the hurricanes?

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I mean, who has the time?

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Dorian is a lil brat.

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He’s just chilling over the Bahamas, wreaking havoc, leaving the rest of us to wonder where he’s headed next on his quest for destruction. I legit didn’t even know NC was in this bro’s path. I was at tea with pals this weekend and one mentioned prepping for the storm and I was like aca-scuse me? My anxious behind obvio ran straight to the grocery store to stock up on non-perishable foods. Do you know how hard it is to make healthy vegan meals with only canned or boxed goods?! It ain’t great! And of course the grocery was out of bottled water already. These peeps go berserk, man. Like, apparently schools are already closed for Thursday. Ya girl is just over here praying to the good Lord above I don’t lose power & have to sleep in a boiling hot home for nights on end again. (First world problems, I know, OK?!)

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Though I did stock up on some new Bath & Body Works candles because like hurricane prep, duh.

 

 

Time: 1 hour (prep + cooking) | Serves: 2 stuffed sweet potatoes

Ingredients:

  • 2 sweet potatoes
  • 1 lb. of spinach
  • 1 can of chickpeas, rinsed + drained
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup of sun-dried tomatoes, diced
  • 2 tbsp. of garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp. of fresh ginger, minced
  • Juice + zest of a lemon
  • 1 14 oz. can of coconut milk
  • 1 tbsp. of olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. of crushed red pepper
  • S+P, to taste
  • Cilantro, for serving

How to:

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  • Pierce potatoes all over with a fork + roast for an hour
  • Arrange chickpeas on a lined baking sheet + bake for 20-25 minutes
  • Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large rimmed skillet or dutch oven over medium heat
  • Add onion + some S+P, cook 3-4 minutes
  • Add garlic + ginger, cook another minute
  • Add sun-dried tomatoes + lemon zest + crushed red pepper, cook another 3 minutes
  • Add spinach, one handful at a time, letting each handful wilt slightly
  • Add chickpeas
  • Add coconut milk + lemon juice + S+P, bring to a boil, turn down heat + simmer for 10 minutes
  • Slice open cooled sweet potatoes + top with spinach + chickpea mix, top with cilantro + serve hot
  • Using your fork as a lil shovel, just dig up a scoop of that goodness + slingshot it at your sweetie’s face + give him or her a creepy, soft smile from across the room

 

 

Adapted from here!