Wednesday, July 02, 2014

Lemon Verbena with Berries

Lemon Verbena Berry Ice Cream

  • 1 1/2 cups cashews
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup packed lemon balm leaves (we used lemon verbena leaves instead)
  • 1/2 cup blueberries
  • 1/2 cup raspberries
  • 1/2 cup agave (any sweetener of choice will work)
  • 1 Meyer lemon with peeling left on
Mix all ingredients together in a Vitamix or strong blender until creamy and smooth. Once the appropriate texture is achieved, add lemon verbena leaves and blend only until they are broken up and blended briefly. I like to have some little green bits of verbena leaves seen in the mixture.

Chill mixture and process through an ice cream machine.

Refreshing! You may substitute berries that are available to you. This recipe also works well with lemon balm (substitute in equal amounts).

*For a dairy version of this frozen dessert, replace the water and cashews with your favorite ice cream recipe.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Blueberry Scones with Orange Marmalade

I saved enough fresh blueberries from yesterday's picking to bake a batch of scones. They baked up beautifully with abundant, juicy, blue orbs in each one.

The recipe called for lemon zest, but I didn't have any lemons, so used lemon juice in the dough and baked them without zest. Then I decided that orange marmalade would be an appropriate sweet to go with the scones. The zest of the orange in the marmalade made up for the lack of zest in the scones. They paired perfectly.

Gluten free scones "act" a bit differently than regular ones. Because they don't contain gluten to trap the carbon dioxide gasses when the baking soda and baking powder do their job, I try to choose forms or shapes that are most likely to rise well without much handling. Sometimes I bake gluten free scones in one large mound that is flattened and then cut with a pizza cutter to make wedges. And at other times, like today, I prefer the drop biscuit approach. I was pleased with the lightness and flavor of these scones.

A simple black tea was selected to accompany the blueberry scones. My choice was Yorkshire Gold because it's full bodied without being overpowering. It's produced by Taylors of Harrogate, a company that was founded in 1886 in Harrogate, Yorkshire, England. It is a blend of five varieties of tea grown in Assam, Sri Lanka, and Kenya. A review of this tea on Serious Eats reports that: 
  • Yorkshire Gold from Taylors of Harrogate is a "luxury blend" of second flush Assam and peak-season East African teas. This is a robust black tea that works well with milk, though given its silky smoothness that's certainly not required. There are hints of cedar and earth; this tea is slightly fruity but mostly savory, perfect for getting your eyes open in the morning.
Although this is a delightful tea with the addition of milk and sugar, I tend to prefer my tea "black" or "plain" so I can taste every undertone as it is, with just a tiny touch of stevia to sweeten.

I chose this teacup because it was blue. It seemed so appropriate for the blueberry theme. It is called Saxony, by Royal Doulton. It is one of my everyday favorites.

Gluten-Free Blueberry Scones

Makes 8 - 10

  • 2 cups gluten-free flour (I used 1 cup garbanzo/fava flour and 1 cup Bob's Red Mill gluten-free flour blend OR all-purpose flour).
  • 1 packet stevia powder (about 1/2 tsp.)
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 6 Tbsp. Smart Balance margarine
  • 1 egg OR 1 egg substitute {flax seed gel}
  • 2/3 cup soymilk
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 generous cup blueberries

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

In a mixing bowl, mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add margarine and cut in with a pastry blender until the size of small peas. Add vanilla, egg, lemon juice, and soymilk. Stir gently with a fork until dough is moist and blended. Gently stir in blueberries.

Form scones by spoonful and place onto a baking stone. Push stray blueberries into dough so none are left out.

Bake for 20 minutes or until golden. Remove from heat and allow to cool on the baking stone. Serve with margarine or butter and orange marmalade. Also delicious with lemon curd.

Of course, at the end of every good photo shoot comes the pleasure of sitting down at a pretty table setting to enjoy what's set out to eat and a nice, hot cup of tea. Today I had a little helper. She's such a polite little thing. She was curious, but asked permission with her eyes before attempting to share. Her nose is long, though, and she has a pretty keen sniffer. I gave Sudo a few crumbs which she appreciated and enjoyed. I discovered, though, that she prefers plain blueberries to scones. She's such a dear.

Whipped Coconut Milk with Bourbon Vanilla Rooibos and Blueberries

Crepes are a favorite family food. And since the family is altogether for Father's Day, it's only natural that crepes are on the menu. Although the menu sounds fairly traditional, it wasn't without its unique variations. 

I keep a can of coconut milk in the fridge door. It's chilled through and ready to be made into coconut milk whipped topping at a moments notice. It's easy enough. Simply open the can, spoon the mixture into a bowl, and whip with an electric mixer {Kitchen Aid} until creamy. I happen to like the little globs of coconut fat solids, so I don't whip it until it is completely creamy, but you can if you try this yourself and would prefer it. I added a 1/2 tsp. of stevia for sweetness and some of our homemade vanilla.

Pear sauce is another simple filling for crepes and could be used for filling or topping. Our family enjoys this even more than applesauce. We use home canned Bartlett pears and put them in a blender {pears and juice} and blend until creamy. Tasty!

U-picks at the blueberry patch down the road start this week, so I need to use up as many of our frozen berries as possible to make room for a new batch. Usually I heat the frozen blueberries in a kettle with water and stevia or with fresh apple juice. 

This time I decided to try something different, so went to my tea cupboard to find something that I thought would be flavorful with the blueberries. I chose a tisane of bourbon vanilla* rooibos that I steeped and then added to the bluebeerries. They were sweetened with 1 tsp. of stevia and thickened with a cornstarch slurry.

Homemade crepes {gluten free} filled with pear sauce and rolled. Then topped with warm blueberry sauce and coconut milk whipped cream {it melts into the warm blueberries upon contact of cold with warm}. Delicious and just right for Father's Day! 

The china is Royal Doulton Carolyn from the Romance series. 

*From Wikipedia: 

  • Bourbon vanilla or Bourbon-Madagascar vanilla, produced from V. planifolia plants introduced from the Americas, is the term used for vanilla from Indian Ocean islands such as Madagascar, the Comoros, and Reunion, formerly the Île Bourbon. It is also used to describe the distinctive vanilla flavor derived from V. planifolia grown successfully in tropical countries such as India.

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Alma's Broccoli & Pea Salad

Alma's Broccoli & Pea Salad

2 cups broccoli, fresh, cut into small pieces (Cuisinart/curved blade)
2 cups frozen peas
2 - 3 stalks celery, diced fine (Cuisinart/squared blade)
1/2 cup almonds, chopped and roasted in skillet (or oven)
1 tsp. dill
1 tsp. sea salt
1/2 cup Vegenaise

Mix all ingredients together after preparing/chopping. Stir until mixed. Serve and enjoy! 

VERY yummy! A good recipe for potlucks because it can be made ahead. Just add the almonds right before serving.

*Use more Vegenaise if you like more moisture.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Basil & Tea Truffles

The floral snowballs also remind me of real snowballs! The kind that are hard when they hit you and that melt when you try to bring them inside! And they remind me of the quintessential Hostess Snowball. Do you remember them? They were a concoction of chocolate cake covered in marshmallow and rolled in coconut. So tempting in the package at the store, but mother would never buy them {they are "just fluff" she'd say and "not good for growing kids"}. But how pretty they were! Instead we'd use the idea to make homemade truffles at home and sis and I would roll them in unsweetened, flaked coconut until they were as dense and pretty as the blossoms on the snowball tree!

And you can make some too! Here's a recipe I enjoy. Find the coconut and you can roll to your heart's content. The recipe even includes tea!

  • 2 cups soy creamer
  • 1/2 cup packed, fresh basil
  • 2 tea bags, Earl Grey tea
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 lb. chocolate, bittersweet, chopped
  • Crushed cookies (gluten-free if necessary), toasted chopped nuts, shredded coconut or cocoa powder, for rolling.

Bring the cream to a low simmer over medium heat. Then remove from heat and add tea bags and basil leaves. Steep for 15 minutes. Then strain mixture and discard the solids. Return the pan of infused cream to the heat and simmer for five more minutes. Then, stir in chocolate until melted and combined. 

Cover mixture and place in fridge. Cool completely (2 hours or overnight). 

When ready to create truffles, place the topping or toppings of your choice in bowls. Use a spoon to scoop by teaspoonful and make a rounded 1 inch ball. Then roll in one of the toppings listed above. Each truffle should be well coated. 

Store truffles in a covered container in the fridge until ready for use.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Chilled Strawberry Soup

May is the month of strawberries! 

The Urban Dictionary defines strawberry thus: 

(n) A delicious fruit and despite being called a "berry" it can be quite large. Strawberries typically are very tart and sweet. They are recognizable due to their red heart-like shape and its many visible seeds covering its outside.

The more proper definition can be found on It says this:


   [straw-ber-ee, -buh-ree] 
noun, plural straw·ber·ries.
the fruit of any stemless plant belonging to the genus Fragaria,  of the rose family, consisting of anenlarged fleshy receptacle bearing achenes on its exterior. See illus. under achene.
the plant itself.
before 1000; Middle English; Old English strēawberige.

No matter how you define it, the strawberry is a tasty morsel of delight! It can be used as a garnish, for dessert, and even as the first course for an afternoon tea party. 

Here's a recipe for {Cold Strawberry Soup} that looks so pretty in a clear glass bowl that contains it for tea time.

{Chilled Strawberry Soup}
  • Puree 2 pints of hulled strawberries, 1/4 peeled cucumber, 2 tablespoons parsley, and 2 tablespoons of cilantro. Remove from blender and gently stir in a pint of hulled and chopped strawberries, 2 tablespoons parsley, 2 tablespoons cilantro, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, and salt to taste. Chill until very cold. Spoon into individual bowls and garnish with a strawberry rose and sliced green onions.

Simplest of Simple Waffles

Simplest of Simple Waffles

1 cups water
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup rolled oats, gluten free if necessary

Preheat waffle iron. Using a blender, mix all ingredients together until very smooth. Pour batter into a prepared, hot waffle iron. Bake for 10 - 12 minutes. The waffles should be golden brown and crispy. Serve with maple syrup and peanut butter or canned fruit. Also good with a frozen dessert like sherbet.

Serves: 1 or 2

Enjoy! Recipe may be doubled to serve more.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Black Bean Hummus

16 oz. black beans, cooked or canned
1 Tbsp. tahini
3 Tbsp. olive oil
1 lime, juiced
2 garlic cloves, sliced
salt {and pepper}
1 tsp. cumin, ground

In a food processor, combine all the ingredients and process until smooth. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use. Allow to bring to room temperature before serving.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Tofu Walnut Burgers

Sometimes it is difficult to find a tasty gluten-free and vegan burger patty.  I'm always on the look-out for a great recipe in this category.  I think this recipe is a keeper.  We had these for lunch today and they were delicious!  The original recipe called for bread crumbs instead of the Rice Chex I used, and if you have gluten-free bread crumbs, they could be substituted.  You can also use your favorite gluten-free flour or egg replacer as a substitute for the gar/fava or soy flour if you'd like.  Enjoy!

Tofu Walnut Burgers

1/2 pound tofu, extra firm
1 cup oatmeal, uncooked (gluten free)
1 cup Rice Chex (gluten free)
1/3 cup gar/fava or soy flour
1 onion, chopped
1/2 cup walnuts, finely chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons Bill's Best Chicknish'
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon seasoning salt
1/2 teaspoon mineral salt
1 teaspoon sage
1 cup water, more if necessary

Rinse and drain tofu.  Crumble with hands into a bowl.  Add oatmeal, crushed Rice Chex, and gar/fava or soy flour.  Stir well, then add finely chopped onion, walnuts, and seasonings.  After well-blended, add water and stir gently.  Allow mixture to sit for a few minutes so water can absorb.  If mixture is dry, add a little more water so that a consistency suitable for molding into patties is obtained.  Be careful not to make the mixture too wet.  Form into burger patties and place on a baking stone and bake in a 350 degree oven until baked for twenty minutes, then turned and browned ten minutes more.  Or fry slowly in coconut or olive oil until patties are a golden brown.

This recipe can be made into meat balls as well.  Serve with gravy, pasta and sauce, or in a burger bun for a delicious sandwich.

Makes 16 burgers (or 24 small patties).

Sunday, February 03, 2013

Zucchini with Linguine

4 Tbsp. olive oil
1 large zucchini, diced*
2 tsp. garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
12 oz. linguine pasta, gluten free if necessary (Tinkyada brand)
1 cup soymilk, unsweetened
2 Tbsp. fresh parsley
4 - 6 Tbsp. [vegan] Parmesan cheese*

Prepare the pasta according to package instructions. Drain when tender and set aside.

Saute' zucchini in olive oil until tender. Add salt and red pepper flakes. When zucchini is soft, add soymilk. Simmer until milk is reduce by about half.

Stir in chopped parsley and Parmesan cheese substitute. Add linguine and stir until mixed.

Taste and adjust seasonings if desired. Delicious!

*I used a golden zucchini and left the peelings on because they were tender.

Flax Crackers

I just made these and they are too good not to share! A tasty way to get your fiber. 

2 cups flax seeds, ground
1 tsp. salt
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
1/2 cup water (hot water makes rolling very easy)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Mix until well blended. Divide dough in half. Roll each half on a baking stone. Score into diamonds or squares. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 -18 minutes.

*I use a pizza cutter to score (cut) into crackers. No need to separate them on the baking stone.

*Alter flavorings as desired: 1 Tbsp. garlic powder; or stevia for sweetening; or 1 tsp. of your favorite dried herb.

*Golden flax seeds seems to tolerate longer baking times than regular brown ones. If you like crispy crackers, bake longer, but keep track of them as they bake.

A non-grain cracker that is a friendly gluten-free option to a traditional cracker.

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Sally's Gingery Soy Curl and Noodle Soup

3 oz. (gluten free) noodles, dried
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 yellow onion, large, chopped
1 Tbsp. ginger, fresh, minced
1 carrot, peeled, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
4 cups water
4 Tbsp. Bill’s Best Chicknish’
2 Tbsp. tamari
1 cup Soy Curls, rehydrated
1 cup lima beans (or edamame)
1 cup soy milk, plain
¼ cup cilantro, fresh, chopped

Cook noodles in water until tender (about 5 - 8 minutes). Drain and set aside.

In a saucepan, heat olive oil. Add onion and cook until tender and translucent. Add the ginger and carrot. Saute for 1 minute. Add the garlic and saute’ for 30 seconds more (do not allow to brown). Add the stock and tamari and bring to a boil. Add the Soy Curls and lima beans (edamame) and return to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the lima beans (edamame) is tender; about 4 minutes. Add the cooked noodles and soy milk. Cook until heated through. Do not let boil.

Remove from heat and stir in cilantro. Ladle into warmed, individual bowls and serve immediately.

Serves 8

Monday, December 31, 2012

Black-Eyed Pea Fritters

1/2 pound black-eyed peas, soaked
4 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tsp. salt
4 Tbsp. water
oil for frying
lime juice to taste

When the peas have softened from soaking, rub off skins. Soak for 30 minutes more. Drain and rinse. 

In a food processor, process peas, garlic, and salt. Add water while continuing to process. Add enough water to get a smooth, thick puree.

Preheat oven to 250 degrees F. 

In a large skillet, heat 2 - 3 inches of oil and fry 1 Tbsp. of batter until it is golden brown. Repeat until all te batter has been fried. Place each batch in oven to keep hot.

Serve piping hot and sprinkled with salt and lime juice.

Friday, December 28, 2012

A Way of Life

"To make bread or love, to dig in the earth, to feed an animal or cook for a stranger; these activities require no extensive commentary, no lucid theology. All they require is someone willing to bend, reach, chop, stir. Most of these tasks are so full of pleasure that there is no need to complicate things by calling them holy. And yet these are the same activities that change lives, sometimes all at once and sometimes more slowly, the way dripping water changes stone. In a world where faith is often construed as a way of thinking, bodily practices remind the willing that faith is a way of life"

Barbara Brown Taylor

*Gluten-free Parkerhouse Rolls in the making.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Veggie Meatballs in BBQ Sauce

Veggie Meatballs in BBQ Sauce

2 - 3 cups textured vegetable protein* OR Soy Curls
4 cups water
1/2 cup olive oil
1 cup oats, certified gluten-free
Generous dash of cayenne pepper
Juice of one lemon
2 Tbsp. flour (garbanzo/fava is my gluten free favorite)
1/2 cup pecan meal
2 Tbsp. tamari, wheat free
3 cloves garlic, crushed OR 1 Tbsp. minced garlic
1 1/2 Tbsp. chicken-style seasoning (McKay's or Bill's Best Chicknish)
1 1/2 cup bread crumbs, gluten free**
1/2 cup onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup celery, finely chopped

In a saucepan, soak textured vegetable protein (or soy curls) in water to rehydrate. Add oats. Cook over medium heat until mixture reaches a slow simmer. Remove from heat. Add remaining ingredients. 

Prepare a large casserole dish or baking sheet with non-stick spray. Using a cookie scoop, portion small rounds of mixture onto casserole dish or baking sheet. Mixture should be firm enough that the mixture stays in a ball rather than flattening out when placed on baking pan. 

Bake at 350 degrees for 45 - 60 minutes. Makes about 75 meatballs.

BBQ Sauce

1 1/2 cups fresh tomato sauce
2 Tbsp. tomato paste
1/4 cup molasses
1 Tbsp. honey
4 tsp. tamari, wheat free
1/8 tsp. garlic powder
1/8 tsp. onion powder
2 tsp. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. liquid smoke

Place all ingredients in saucepan and stir well. After combining, cook over medium heat until the mixture comes to a simmer.

Before serving, pour warmed BBQ sauce over the meatballs (hot out of the oven). 


*Textured Vegetable Protein is sometimes called TVP. It can be a gluten or  soy product. The soy version is readily available and is available for gluten-free vegetarians. It's called either TVP or TSP.  The light colored (chicken style) TVP generally does not contain gluten, but the dark (beef style) always does. Soy Curls can be used instead. They are a dehydrated soybean and work very well in this recipe. 

**Bread Crumbs: I used a store-bought, whole grain, gluten-free bread from Costco called Silver Hills brand.

Holiday Green Salad with Raspberry Lemon Dressing

Holiday Green Salad with Raspberry Lemon Dressing

1 lb. red and green artisan lettuces, torn into 1" pieces
1 medium green apple, peeled and diced
1 avocado, diced into 1" cubes
1 Tbsp. dried cranberries
2/3 cup corn kernels, defrosted

Prepare ingredients and toss together in a serving bowl.

- - -

Raspberry Lemon Dressing

1 small package raspberries
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup raspberry apple juice, concentrated OR raspberry white grape juice concentrate
1 to 2 packets stevia
1/2 cup lemon juice, fresh
3 Tbsp. black cherry fruit spread, fruit juice sweetened
1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard OR 1 Tbsp. mustard powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. poppy seeds

Place all ingredients except poppy seeds in a blender. Whiz until well blended. Pour into serving pitcher and stir in poppy seeds.

Sharing My Favorite Recipes with You!

Health-Supportive Cooking

Welcome to my kitchen where recipes, cooking tips, and menu ideas are shared! Sit down at my table, sip a cup of tea, and smell the delicious aroma from my cozy kitchen! Join in friendly chat by using the comments feature on my blog to post your questions, comments, & favorite recipes. Let's discover together.

Occasionally a recipe may be shared that is not BOTH vegan and gluten free. All gluten free recipes are designated with a tag below the recipe post.

Yum! Let's get cooking!

*If you are looking for a specific type of recipe, scroll to the left of the page where titles are listed by recipe category. *

*Recipes and photos copyright@LaTeaDah 2005 - 2012