Category Archives: Featured

Curried Chicken-less Jackfruit Salad Sandwiches

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Best Foods new egg-free, cholesterol-free spread called Carefully Crafted Dressing & Sandwich Spread is helping me gear up for summer picnics and tea parties.  I decided to recreate a past favorite to share at my next summer gathering, Curried Chicken-less Jackfruit Salad Tea Sandwiches.  In my pre-vegan years, I catered many tea parties.  Of all the dishes I made, my curried chicken salad recipe was most-loved.  In my vegan-friendly version, I utilize Best Foods Carefully Crafted Dressing & Sandwich Spread to make the curried dressing. 

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Carefully Crafted is smooth, creamy, light, and has a tangy zip, which makes it perfect in transforming my recipe into something even non-vegans can enjoy.  In addition to using Carefully Crafted, I use young green jackfruit in place of roasted chicken.  Jackfruit can be found in Asian markets or, for all Los Angeles locals, at OrganixLA.  Otherwise, jackfruit can be ordered online!   To get a palatable texture and make it more easily digestible, I braise the young green jackfruit.  After being braised and shredded, it very much resembles shredded chicken.

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What I enjoy most about this recipe are the exotic flavors and textures of curry powder, mango chutney, and the crunchy texture of the water chestnuts, almonds, celery, and the sweetness of the grapes.  There are several ways to enjoy this curried jackfruit salad: between 2 slices of whole wheat bread or topped onto one slice of gluten-free bread; wrapped inside of a tortilla or collard leaf; to top a salad with; or just on its own, as my sister Riva enjoys it best.  This recipe is so simple, and with Best Foods Carefully Crafted as part of my recipe, I can rest-assured that there are no mystery ingredients and feel good about serving this to my loved ones.

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This article was created in partnership with Best Foods and FeedFeed – all opinions expressed are my own.

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Curried Chicken-less Jackfruit Salad Sandwiches

Serves: 6-8

Time: 3 hours

 

Ingredients

Braised Jackfruit:

4 cups (2 cans or 20 oz. drained) young green jackfruit (don’t use the sweet kind!)

3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped

3 cups vegetable stock

¼ tsp sea salt

1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Dressing:

½ cup plus 2 Tbsp Best Foods Carefully Crafted Dressing & Sandwich Spread

 

1 Tbsp coconut aminos (or tamari or Bragg’s liquid aminos)

1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

1 ½ tsp curry powder

1 Tbsp prepared mango chutney

Salad:

½ cup celery, diced

1 (8 oz can) water chestnuts, chopped

2 cups seedless red grapes, halved

5-6 Tbsp slivered almonds

 

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

2. In an 8”X8” or 9”X9” square baking dish, combine all of the ingredients for the braised

jackfruit.

3. Place in the oven for 2 hours.

4. Once it has cooked for 2 hours, use 2 forks to pull the jackfruit, resulting in shredded jackfruit.

5. In a medium bowl, combine all of the ingredients for the dressing and whisk together.

6. Add the remaining salad ingredients including the shredded jackfruit and toss to combine.

7. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.  This can be eaten on its own, in a wrap, between 2

slices of bread (or on top of one slice of bread), or on top of lettuce.  I like to cut off the edges of

the bread if I make sandwiches and cut them into fours to create cute little tea sandwiches. 

 

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Raw Superfood Truffles demo at LA Cookie Con with Melissa’s Produce

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On Sunday, January 25th, Los Angeles debuted its very first LA Cookie Con and Sweets Show.  When I was invited to give a live “cooking” demo at the West Coast’s biggest baking and pastry party, I could not turn down the opportunity.  As many of you know, it is my mission to prove to all that vegan and gluten-free food can be absolutely delicious while still being nutritious.  I had two demos—one in the morning and one in the afternoon, so I was happy to have broadcast my message twice!  I was also thrilled that vegans and non-vegans alike loved my Superfood Truffles and came back for seconds and thirds!

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Many thanks to Nancy Tei, the organizer of the event, for inviting me to demonstrate how to make a raw vegan and gluten-free dessert to the public, and a big thanks to my friends at Melissa’s Produce for providing all of the delicious and nourishing ingredients to make my Superfood Truffles.  Additionally, I want to thank all those who stopped by to watch my cooking demos and asked great questions about the benefits of a vegan lifestyle and eating raw until 4 o’clock.

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Melissa’s Produce made this such a positive experience for me.  The Friday before the event, I met up with Nancy Eisman and Sara De Leeuw at the Melissa’s Produce test kitchen to prepare samples and prizes to give away at the convention.  Nancy works on various projects at Melissa’s Produce and writes for the Melissa’s Produce blog, Plantbased411 blog as well as her own blog, Adventures with Nancy Rose.  Sara is a Master Preserver, instructor, and the creator of the My Imperfect Kitchen blog.  One thing I miss about working in a professional kitchen is having coworkers and getting to know one another as we complete our tasks.  I had so much fun rolling my hundreds of truffles while getting to know these lovely ladies at the test kitchen.  I felt that we clicked right from the start, so that was a great feeling.  On the day of the convention, Nancy and Sara were some of my biggest cheerleaders–I cannot thank them enough for their support!

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Sara also demo’d at the convention.  She made the most amazing Chocolate Chile Bark with Pepitas and Blood Orange Zest.  It is the Best chocolate bark I have ever tasted!  The recipe can be found on her blog or in the Melissa’s Produce The Great Pepper Cookbook.

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Meanwhile, Nancy distributed Melissa’s Produce Clean Snax to the public.  They come in four flavors: almond, coconut, cranberry, and pumpkin.  They are bee-gan (which means they contain honey).  My husband, who considers himself plant-based, enjoys this snack.  He usually picks up the snack at the Staples Center when we attend Clippers games, and he enjoys the pumpkin flavor most.

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Now, let me tell you about my Superfood Truffles.  The recipe is actually a collaboration.  When Nancy Eisman and I discussed ingredients I needed in order to make my Goji-, Cranberry, Coconut Truffles recipe, Nancy suggested I add some cacao nibs to make it a little chocolatey.  At first I was not keen on the idea, but Nancy really believed that it was a great idea since so many people who love cookies and pastries also love chocolate.  We gave it a try—added it into the recipe and, oh my, they turned out even better than the original.  So delicious.  The cacao nibs add a nice crunch factor and deep chocolate flavor to the truffles.  That is how the Superfood Truffle was born!  I’m so glad I met Nancy.  Not only is she down-to-earth and fun, without her I wouldn’t have my Superfood Truffles recipe.  I hope you enjoy it as a snack or dessert!

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Melissa’s Produce and goods can be found in the US, in major grocery stores like Whole Foods, Sprouts, Trader Joe’s, Vons, Ralphs, and the list goes on.

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Superfood Truffles

Servings:  15

Time:  20 minutes

Diet: V, GF, GFV, DF, SF, R

 

Ingredients

1 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes, plus 1/2 cup for rolling

1/2 cup dried cranberries

1/3 cup dried goji berries

3/4 cup almond flour

1/4 cup coconut nectar

1/4 cup coconut oil, melted

2 tsp vanilla extract

a pinch fine sea salt

1/4 cup cacao nibs

Directions

1.  Add all of the ingredients EXCEPT for the cacao nibs to a food processor.  Pulse a few times to combine until you reach a texture of your liking.  More texture is better than being over-processed.  You still want to see chunks of the dried fruit.

2.  Pour the mixture into a medium bowl.  Add the cacao nibs and stir to combine, using clean hands or a silicone spatula.  Make sure the cacao nibs are evenly distributed!

3.  Line a quarter-sheet pan or tupperware with parchment paper.  Scoop out 1.5 Tbsp-sized truffles, round them out with your hands, then roll into coconut flakes and place them onto the lined sheet tray or plate.  You should make about 15-18 truffles.  Refrigerate immediately until hardened, about 15-20 minutes.

Note: These truffles are best eaten cold, right out of the refrigerator. Enjoy!

 

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Clean Eating Magazine Feature

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I am honored to have been recognized by Clean Eating Magazine as a chef who is dominating the web!  Your support, positive feedback, and moments like this make what I do so worthwhile.  Thank you to my readers and a big thank you to Clean Eating Magazine for the feature and interview.

Click here to read my full interview and to get the recipe for one of my favorite desserts, the decadent Chocolate Truffle Cake!  Yes, it is vegan and free of gluten, soy, and refined sugar!  If you haven’t tried it, I recommend you soak raw cashew now!

Pick up a Clean Eating Magazine at a Whole Foods Market near you!

 

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What’s Up? Magazine Feature – Morning Tonic Recipe & App of the Week

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I am delighted to have my Morning Tonic recipe featured in What’s Up Magazine’s Food Newsletter Column by Rhea Torreon, and named Drink of the Week!   This special hot beverage is something I enjoy almost every morning.  It’s my version of warm lemon water, but cranked up a notch with the addition of turmeric and cayenne pepper.  There are so many benefits to drinking warm lemon water.  In doing so, it initiates the production of digestive juices and gives my digestive process a nice kick start for the day.  Learn about the many benefits one can receive from my special concoction in her article, and get the recipe too!  Click here for the article.

Another exciting tidbit.  With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, I failed to notice that the My Eclectic Kitchen App was also featured as the App of the Week in December by What’s Up? Magazine!  I was very pleased about the write up. See why the My Eclectic Kitchen App was named App of the Week in the article, here!

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Photos by Rhea Torreon.  To subscribe to Rhea Torreon’s Food column, go to www.whatsupmag.com, click on the subscribe link at the top, then click on the E-Newsletter link, and finally enter your email and check the box for What’s Up Food.

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