Not sure if it’s because I’ve been bumming with a nasty head cold, or what, but I’ve been feeling super domestic lately. My rare mood for baking, coupled with all of our banana trees going off at once, sprung the creation of this yummy banana muffin recipe topped with preserves. Do not swap jelly in for the preserves, as jelly tends to be a bit loose (no offense, jelly) and spreads out all over the muffin top creating a soggy mess instead of a nice tight fruit puddle. Although it does contain a bit of sugar, the recipe is whole wheat so feel free to be self-righteous when you eat them.

Coconut Banana Raspberry Jammer Muffins

Time: 30 Min | Makes: 12 muffins, or 24 mini muffins

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Ugh it’s frikkin cold! When it’s cold, I want to hibernate inside with something hot. Unfortunately, the man I sex (love you!) lives an hour away so I substitute man hotness for hot food. Specifically, winter is the season for soups and stews. But I have already written on here about soup wizardry, so let us move on to stew. What is a stew? I was cooking with my friend Nick from thelittlestwinslow.com a while back and we pondered this question.

I turned to my most trusted source of information; according to Wikipedia, “A stew is a combination of solid food ingredients that have been cooked in liquid and served in the resultant gravy.”

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Look at me being all artsy!

Look at me being all artsy!

Happy holidays folks! Hanukkah is over, and Christmas is just a wee bit away. Right now, I am missing the bit of my family that lives in Hawaii. (Hi, mom!!!) So, because I relate everything to food (Must.Eat.Feelings), I made these Island-style mashed sweet potatoes. Feel free to try this recipe for your family or just make for yourself. Enjoy!

Island-Style Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Time: 45 minutes/ Serves: 4

You will need:
- 2 big ass sweet potatoes or yams, peeled and halved.
- 3 tablespoons coconut manna. (Not oil! Manna.This stuff is so delicious I can’t handle it.)
- 1/2 cup fresh squozen OJ.
- ½ tbs cinnamon
- 1tsp ground ginger
- ¼ tsp nutmeg

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Fall is officially here. Or it feels like it is, at least. The mornings are chilly, I’ve dug out my scarves, the iced coffees have been swapped for hot lattes and I’m eating squash. From butternut to acorn and then back to butternut, I love squash, both sweet and savory. The following recipe features the red herring of squash– the spaghetti squash. Because what is more deceptive–or more delicious–than a squash masquerading as a pasta? You get to eat it and feel like you’re loading up on carb heavy noodles when in reality you’re eating a fiber rich fruit stuffed full of beta carotene. Plus, I love how it changes as you bake it. What a tricky trickster! Raw, it looks much like any other yellow squash. Pop it in the oven and it comes out in noodlesque ribbons and you get to feel like a regular Hermione Granger. (Because if I was a witch I would use my magic in all my culinary endeavors, obviously.)

This recipe is my ultimate fall comfort food, and featuring two kinds of squash, it is a beta carotene powerhouse, and extremely filling.

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Spaghetti Squash with Pumpkin Ricotta
Serves two

Pumpkin Ricotta

1 lb of extra firm tofu
¾ cup of unsalted cashews
1 cup pumpkin puree
juice of 1 lemon
1 clove garlic
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp nutmeg
½ tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp cayenne
¼ tsp dried basil
¼ tsp dried oregano
1 tbs pure maple syrup

Squash
1 large spaghetti squash
½ tbs olive oil

Step one

Preheat oven to 375. Slice open squash length wise and remove seeds. Brush with olive oil and bake for 1 hour. (Seeds can be tossed with oil and baked on pan for garnish.)

Step two
Add all ricotta ingredients to a food processor and puree until creamy. Try and resist the urge to eat the entire batch with spoon as you wait for your squash to bake. Keep at room temperature.

Step three
Remove squash from oven and let cool 5 minutes. Add ½ cup of ricotta to each squash. You will have left over ricotta. I like to eat my leftovers with sauteed veggies. And also plain, right out of the Tupperware with a spoon.

Serve with veggies of choice.
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Basil balsamic reduction over tempeh with baby bok choy, garden squash and brown rice. Get in me!

Basil is my all time favorite herb. While some can sing all day long about cilantro, I’ve been a basil girl since childhood. Some say basil is good for female fertility and stimulates the sex drive, but I don’t know about any of that voodoo! I just know it tastes delicious.(And if it also keeps me juicy, well that can’t hurt.)

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I know I have been promising SexyTofu would become more food-focused now that I have joined the real world and acquired a Smartphone. (Technology makes it harder for me to blame my laziness on the lack of a quick method for snapping food shots.) And, if you read last week’s post about cooking for one, well then you know the OTHER reason I’ve been scant on the recipes over the past year. I’m sorta lonely, you guys…and when I’m lonely I would rather make a smoothie and snuggle this guy than experiment in the kitchen:


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Yes, those are peas and carrots in the corn bread…

In honor of A’s southern home-town, this past Friday we whipped up a vegan friendly southern meal of barbecued tempeh, gluten free corn bread and—in lieu of lardy collard greens—raw kale avocado salad.

The kale avocado salad was inspired by one of my mom’s recipe. My version is much simpler—mainly it contains less ingredients because I am usually too poor to get all the good stuff Ma puts in. Plus, her recipe is top secret!

Raw Kale Avo Salad
Serves: two hungry people

1 large bunch of kale, washed and torn
1 medium organic ripe avo
2 tablespoons fresh basil (foraged from the basil plants for sale outside the local grocery store, perhaps?!)
1 tablespoon EVOO
1 tablespoon good balsamic vinegar
1 cup chopped cherry tomatoes
2 tablespoons roasted pumpkin or sunflower seeds
Salt and pepper to taste

Step One:
Put kale in bowl and add flesh of avo. Mash with (clean!) fingers.

Step Two:
Add rest of ingredients, except tomatoes, and massage until kale begins to break down. You will know this is happening because the kale will shrink right before your eyes, ending up with an itty bitty fraction of the mass you started off with. I usually mash mine for a solid 10-15 minutes straight.

Step Three:
Lick fingers. Add tomatoes. Serve.

The barbecue sauce A and I concocted was inspired by Veganomicon, although we didn’t follow any of the sauce recipes in there…just lovingly observed what Isa Chandra Moskowitz did. A and I love a good spicy hot sauce, so  one of the featured flavors in our BBQ is ginger. In honor of that, we named our sauce Red Bush BBQ. (A’s boyfriend disapproved of the name, saying no one wants to “think about pubes while eating.” I disagree. )

I am currently working on perfecting this BBQ sauce in time for National Barbecue day, which is May 16. I actually vowed to stop celebrating national food days after I had an extremely traumatizing experience on National Pancake day, which is why I am prepping this recipe wayyyy in advance.

Red Bush BBQ sauce is a terrific late-night food. We made the meal for dinner and then teetered home at around 3 am to eat the rest of it. When the tempeh was gone, we continued to dip everything in sight in the BBQ sauce while saying stupid drunk-girl things like ”do you know what would be good in this BBQ sauce? Frozen pizza crust,” and “OHHHMYGAWD I don’t want to still be dating at 35. I want nuggets”

A is so adorable, stirring that sauce, drinking her chai. She will most certainly be wifeyed and nuggeted by 35.

Stay tuned for the recipe for Red Bush BBQ sauce, coming in May! Are you still dating at 35? Is it like when I was 16 and thought 24 was old, and now that I am 24 I think 35 is old?  Do you agree with A’s boyfriend about the name of our BBQ sauce? I like it. But I am kind of gross. (Thus I will probably not be married at 35…)

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When your life is a crazy cocktail with a recipe that reads two parts busy and one part lazy, cooking an elaborate meal at the end of the day to eat by yourself sounds as appealing as bathing in bleach. In the warm weather this is fine because I crave cooling, raw foods like salads and smoothies that take no effort to throw together. But in the winter I want someone to cuddle with and rub my shoulders and set up shop in my ladybits. Okay, that has nothing to do with food.  In the winter, I also want to eat warm food. So I have been doing a bit of lazy-girl cooking, which consists of throwing all my ingredients in a pot or pan and turning up the heat. My favorite winter staple is soup, and although I don’t follow a recipe per se, all of my better-than-Campbells concoctions contain the following:

- 1 cup of grains. I like quinoa, brown rice, barley, millet and wheat berries.
- 1 large can of organic crushed or diced tomatoes
- 1 can of tomato paste
- 1 or 2 cans of beans; garbanzo, kidney, white, whatever. I don’t discriminate.
- 1 or 2 carrots, diced
- 2 or 3 stalks of celery, diced
- 1 onion, diced
- 2-3 cups of veggies, fresh or frozen. Mushrooms, green beans, peas, corn, cabbage, zucchini.
- 3-4 big handfuls of greens (spinach, kale and swiss chard are my favs) which I add at the end of cooking
- Herbs, fresh or dried. Oregano, thyme, basil, parsley, tons of black pepper.

I throw it all in a pot with a couple liters of water (more or less depending on if I want my soup brothy or stewy. Yep, those are words.), bring it to a boil and then let it simmer for an hour. It gets even better after a few days in the fridge. Sometimes I eat it for breakfast.

I know that’s really not a very good recipe, but I feel like soup is one of those things you can improvise with and never really screw up.

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