Posts tagged ‘lettuce’

Mmm…fake bacon (and how I came to be a vegetarian)

Is fake bacon sufficiently inspiring as a blog topic? I don’t know, except to say look at this beautiful veggie BLT. Actually it’s a FBLAATC sandwich – fake bacon, lettuce, arugula (still growing in my garden even in January), avocado, tomato and cheese sandwich. Not quite as catchy as BLT, but every bit as good if not better.

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January 15, 2012 at 10:42 pm Leave a comment

Strawberry salad!

A quick post to point you in the direction of my strawberry salad recipe. It’s strawberry season again and enjoying the ripe red fruit in a delicious salad is a rite of summer for me. I found beautiful BC-grown organic strawberries for sale at the corner store on our street this week and I’ve been blissfully eating my way through a big basket for the past two days.

I’ve updated the original recipe to include mint and chopped green onions along with the salad greens, strawberries and goat cheese. Those herbs combined with the creamy cheese and the juicy sweetness of the strawberries is a magical pairing.

Happy strawberry finding and salad eating!

June 12, 2010 at 8:28 pm 3 comments

Portobello mushroom burgers

I know, they look just like “real” burgers. They’re better, actually: they contain all the joy of a tasty burger and no animals have to die! The recipe below makes enough for two people if you are serving salad or side dishes along with the burgers. (more…)

May 29, 2010 at 5:55 pm Leave a comment

Orange, brie and almond salad

orange salad

One benefit of growing your own food is the constant challenge to find creative ways to sneak excess vegetables into everything you make. Between selecting and planting the seeds, nurturing them through their early days and constantly hauling jugs of rainwater and compost around the yard to feed the plants, it’s a lot of work to grow vegetables. After all that effort, there’s no way I’m letting any of it go to waste!

A couple of months ago I scattered some lettuce, spinach and beet seeds in a planter on our sunny back deck and now we’re blessed with a bounty of home-grown salad greens. And they keep growing faster and faster! This means every day is a salad day. Here’s a salad that I made for lunch today with our fresh salad greens and other ingredients that were handy. It’s a keeper.

Pile salad greens on as many plates as there are people to feed. Top each plate of greens with a handful of almonds, a few slices of brie cheese, some crumbled crunchy crackers (I recommend Raincoast Crisps or the Calgary-produced version called Flats or your favourite gluten free cracker) and one small orange, peeled and divided into sections. I usually leave the inner membranes on oranges – the extra fiber is good for you. Always, always buy organic oranges – citrus fruits are among the worst for being sprayed heavily with pesticides. I like to keep grated citrus peel in the freezer for adding to baked goods like scones and cookies, and you can imagine how hard it is to remove all traces of pesticides and chemicals from the peel even if you do wash the fruit well.

For the dressing, grate some citrus peel from an orange or lemon into a small bowl. Cut the fruit in half, squeeze out the juice and add this to the grated rind. Mix in a teaspoon of honey (local!), a teaspoon of poppy seeds and a couple of tablespoons of vegetable oil (we’ve recently switched from the ubiquitous extra virgin olive oil to cold-pressed organic canola oil from Highwood Crossing, which is based just outside of Calgary). This is enough dressing for two people.

June 28, 2009 at 3:23 pm 1 comment

Growing salad greens

salad greens

Lettuce, spinach and other salad greens are probably the most satisfying vegetables to grow in the garden. I planted seeds for butter lettuce, an heirloom red leaf variety, spinach and beet greens, and after about a month of growing time they’re ready to eat. And they all taste so good! I’m especially fond of the earthy, tangy flavour of tiny beet greens mixed into a salad with the lettuce and spinach. All the blogs / magazine articles recommend seeding salad greens every few weeks to ensure a continuous supply of fresh, young leaves to harvest all summer long. I plan to seed some shady areas near our house with these varieties as the deck is far too hot for greens during the summertime.

After being spoiled from the pleasure of eating fresh lettuce from our garden last spring and summer, I avoided lettuce all winter long. As a vegetarian I don’t usually have the problem of fresh veggies going to waste, but lettuce bought from the store is an exception and quickly makes its way to compost-bin heaven after becoming a forgotten mushy mess in the fridge. But now we have lettuce growing in the planter boxes on our deck again! I love being able to wander out to the yard at dinner time and gather a few leaves of everything into a bowl for salad and know that it tastes 100 times better than store-bought lettuce, with none wasted by my carelessness and strange aversion to making salad from lettuce that comes out of a fridge.

I’ve been eating fresh greens almost every night – as salad, in wraps, on (portabello) burgers and sandwiches. This weekend I’ll buy some arugula seeds so we can add that to the mix – I’ve been dreaming of the way it tastes heaped on top of a thin crust pizza, especially one made with gorgonzola cheese. Yum!

June 9, 2009 at 9:15 pm 2 comments

Rainy days

livingroom  077

Today is the best kind of rainy day. It’s early spring, and we’ve just come off two warm and sunny days with temperatures in the high teens and early 20s (celsius). I know that the vegetable seeds I’ve been scratching into bare patches of soil all over our yard are relishing a cool drink. The lettuce and spinach sprouting in containers on the deck thrive in this kind of weather. The rain barrel is filing up for spring. And the four raspberry canes that arrived from my parents’ garden are happily easing into a new life in our yard after being transplanted into a cool, moist space along the fence earlier this afternoon.

We’ve spent a wonderfully restful rainy day together at home today. It began with waking up to the sound of rain and wind chimes outside our bedroom window. The first hour of the day was spent baking. I made my favorite scone recipe using blueberries and orange zest I had stored in the freezer. We enjoyed those along with fresh fruit and coffee. My parents dropped by with the new raspberries and we had a quick chat while planting them in the drizzling rain. Since then we’ve been reading by the fire with steaming mugs of a spicy mandarin and black tea blend from Silk Road called “Tea of Good Cheer,” which seems particularly fitting for the day.

I can’t think of anything I find more relaxing than a rainy day at home. I love the sound and smell of rain, the rejuvenating effect it has on my plants and garden and the way it slows everything down. It’s like a cozy blanket over the world, helping us renew and refresh so we’re ready for the sunshine again.

May 18, 2009 at 9:01 pm Leave a comment


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