Wednesday, April 30, 2014

creamy pasta primavera with kelp noodles

it's spring thyme! (see what i did there?) today is cold and rainy, but one beautiful sunny day in early april i was so inspired by the new season and its veggies that i created this creamy pasta primavera, or "spring pasta" as it translates.

when i made this meal i remembered to jot down the recipe for the sauce, but forgot to measure and note how much of each vegetable. whoops. guessing i used a head or two of broccoli, five or six mushrooms, half a cup peas, a few carrots and some sprigs of thyme. the thought that tender raw asparagus would have been perfect in this bright creamy sauce keeps nudging me. next time!

pasta primavera sauce (serves two)

1/2 cup soaked cashews
1/4 large avocado
1/4 small red bell pepper
juice from one lemon
1/4 tsp miso
1 garlic clove
cayenne pepper, black pepper and salt, to taste
nutritional yeast or go veggie parmesan cheese alternative (to taste and optional)

blend all ingredients in a high speed blender. toss with a package of kelp noodles and vegetables. serve at room temperature. this sauce would also go well with zucchini pasta, and a mix of kelp noodles and "zasta" or "zoodles" with basil and tomato would be great for summer!

have you tried kelp noodles? how do you like to prepare them?

Monday, April 28, 2014

pressing flowers

kati and i did some flower pressing today and i took photos to show you how easy it is. all you need are some flowers, paper and heavy books. (a cute cat is optional :)

i picked these wildflowers on my walk to the community garden this morning. the violets were growing on the side of the road. they are new jersey's state flower (nerd alert!), and violets are edible! i get very excited when i see them. the periwinkle was planted by one of the community garden members and it's spreading all over. i love it.

so all i do is lay the flowers out nicely on a plain sheet of paper, bloom side down, making sure none are overlapping. also make sure your flowers are dry before you press them, and check that there are no ants or other little critters living inside. these heavy hardcover books that i inherited from my grandpop jake are perfect for pressing. so are phone books and textbooks. the newer flowers go to the bottom of the pile (inside the books or in between them - i do both). after the first few hours you can check to see if they need repositioning, but after that they should be left undisturbed for about a month (though i know in the beginning it's so hard not to peek!)

in the past i've used tissue paper for pressing, but i found it left creases in some of the flower petals. now i use computer paper, and sometimes i just press right inside the book. the flowers above are bachelor buttons that i pressed the summer my grandmother passed away. she loved bachelor buttons, so i'm going to use them to make a gift for my mom in remembrance of our gg

storing the flowers was a bit of an issue until i just started to tape them into a composition book. oh, and labeling the flowers is a good idea, but i tend to forget.

most of the flowers grew in the garden - some i planted, and many are weeds! some of my favorite pressings are weeds wildflowers, like these lil sweeties. i've named them baby butterfly puffs. =)

do you press flowers? i can't believe how simple it is. i used to think i needed a flower press to do it (would still love one though!). you could really press flowers in any old book, and i think i may start carrying one around to press on-the-go.

"flowers are like friends; they bring color to your world."

music monday: china roses

wishing you a beautiful, peaceful day. 

Sunday, April 6, 2014

spring has sprung

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