Friday, July 29, 2011

Sesame Ginger Quinoa Salad

This week is soccer camp for the small children which motivates me to share with you two things:

1. Awesome things that five-year-olds say; and
2. A amazing salad that will have you reveling in the magical combination of sesame plus ginger.

On Wednesday, the kids were surprised by a visit from number 11, forward for the Seattle Sounders, Steve Zakuani. Noodle Nose's response after meeting him? 

'He's famous!! And I'm his famous friend!'

Yes child. Yes you are.

Then yesterday we had the pleasure of bringing home Mr. Jack, one of Noodle's friends. I suggested they go out and practice some of their newly learned soccer moves. Jack's response (in absolute seriousness)?

'Noodle doesn't want to play soccer with me because I'm too legendary for him.'

Bah! I almost peed my pants laughing.

And the salad? A perfect finish to a sunshiny day full of awesome things five-year-olds say. And don't let the salad fool you into thinking it's only for birds and ladies who lunch. This salad packs the protein in a serious way. And it's delicious. Which is legendary.


Need:
3 Tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1 whole lime, juiced and zested
1 Tablespoon creamy peanut butter (I used Adams)
1 teaspoon agave nectar
pinch salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
1 cup quinoa, cooked per package instructions and cooled
1 1/4 cups green garbanzo beans, steamed
1/2 head cabbage, sliced thin into about 2 inch long strips (like cole slaw)
About 1 cup matchstick carrots
1 can water chestnuts, drained and sliced in half
6-8 green onions, chopped... with about 3 Tablespoons reserved for garnish
About 1/2 cup slivered almonds
1 can mandarin oranges, drained and sliced in half
About 3 Tablespoons sesame seeds


Do:
In a jar, combine sesame oil, lime juice and zest, peanut butter, agave nectar, salt and pepper. Cover and shake until fully emulsified.

Cook and cool quinoa and green garbanzo beans then combine in a medium bowl. To that add cabbage, carrots,  water chestnuts, onions and almonds.

Drizzle about half of the dressing over top of your salad and gently toss, ensuring dressing is evenly distributed.

Add mandarin oranges and about half of the remaining dressing. Toss gently, as to not crush the oranges.

Serve:
Arrange in bowls or on plates then Ssprinkle sesame seeds and green onion on top.


Enjoy!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Crunchy Asian Tofu and Veg Salad

Sundays are not only the beginning of a new week, they are also the end of the previous week. A day to wind down from the weekend and get ready for the start of a new week.

And personally, I love ending slash beginning the week with a really fresh, healthy and no nonsense meal. This week, it just so happens that I still have a ton of vegetables from our last CSA pick up. And that includes the two kohlrabi that are both as big as my head. And I'm not kidding. Post on those coming up soon.

So this Sunday I decided to spotlight some of this amazing veg in a fantastically tricky combination of  my love of crunchy salads and Honey's love of barbecuing. I'd say 'Winning' but I happen to think Charlie is a bit of a douche. I'll say 'Fantastical!' instead.


The combination of 'spicy' tofu and sesame dressed slaw is a flavor carnival. Pair that with the texture combinations of raw and slightly barbecued veg and you have a great salad for lunch or dinner. It also holds really well so if you have leftovers, never fear... it will be just as delicious the next day.

Yield: about 6 servings

Need:
3 Tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil

2 Tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon spicy brown mustard
1 Tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon Bragg's liquid aminos
1/2 teaspoon plus 1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
About 1 teaspoon plus 1 teaspoon chinese five spice
2 pkgs extra firm tofu, drained and pressed of excess liquid then cut into about 1 inch cubes
2 medium heads broccoli, quartered

2 small zucchini, de-ended and sliced in half lengthwise
2 small yellow squash, de-ended and sliced in half lengthwise
1/2 head green cabbage, cut in half and then into thin strips (think cole slaw)
1/2 head purple cabbage, cut same as green cabbage
1 small bunch cilantro, de-ended and chopped
1 Tablespoon tahini

Do:
Heat your grill.

In a large bowl, combine the first 3 Tablespoons toasted sesame oil, 2 Tablespoons rice wine vinegar, 1 teaspoon spicy brown mustard, 1 Tablespoon Bragg's liquid aminos and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Whisk with a fork then add tofu cubes and 1 teaspoon chinese five spice.

Toss gently to ensure even coverage then let sit for about 10 minutes so the tofu can soak up some of the liquid. When done, skewer tofu, arrange on a lined baking sheet and set aside for barbecuing.

Put brocolli, zucchini and squash in tofu bowl with the remainder of the marinade. Sprinkle with remaining 1 teaspoon chinese five spice then gently toss then arrange on baking sheet with the tofu.

Grill tofu and veg on the barbecue until veg is al dente and tofu is crispy on the outside.

While your tofu and veg is grilling, in the same large bowl, combine green cabbage, purple cabbage and cilantro. Toss to combine and evenly distribute the remaining marinade throughout.

In a small jar, combine 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil, 1 teaspoon rice wine vineger, 1 teaspoon Bragg's liquid aminos, 1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper and 1 Tablespoon tahini. Cover and shake well.

When brocolli, zucchini , squash and tofu are done grilling, remove from grill.

Chop the veg into about bite sized pieces and put into the bowl with cabbage, spoon about half of the dressing on top and gently toss.

You're ready to plate!

Serve:
On a plate, start by arranging the salad portion onto the middle of the plate, ensuring you have an even representation of cabbage and grilled veg.

Arrange 5 or so pieces of tofu on top then spoon a little of the remaining dressing over top of the tofu.

This salad is a textural dream and boasts the flavor of toasty sesame oil, chinese five spice and a little tahini for good measure. A wonderful and creative way to get your protein and fresh fiber.

Enjoy!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Wilted Dandelion Greens with Garlicky Cashews

This is our first year being part of a CSA. I have wanted to join for many years but just didn't pull it together until now. So I signed us up for a full share because we're vegan-ish and we eat a lot of stuff that comes from the ground.

So back in June, during the first week of our pick up, I was desperately excited to go get my veggies. It's possible I was a little too excited because I dressed the part. Think sunglasses and flip flops (even though it wasn't nearly warm enough) and my basket.

My cute little basket that I have held on to for years even though it is not so little and also a gi-normous storage nightmare. But I held on to it knowing that someday, just someday I would have a perfect use for it.

And guess what basket? Your day is now. Because you must have been specifically made for veggie pick up day. And you're cute. And that's important.

In our basket and to our table, this week I have a delicious recipe featuring dandelion greens and beet greens.


The original recipe is courtesy of Vegetarian Times via Terra Verde. Because as if growing vegetables and managing a CSA isn't enough, Amy and Skuter, also create a newsletter with recipe ideas to go along with what's in your basket for the week. And that's just fantastic.

I did make some small changes to the original recipe. Either way, this is a quick and simple side dish that goes great with anything Gardein, though my favorite are the beefless tips. These greens would also be fantastic wrapped up in a tortilla with some quinoa or goat cheese, if you do that.

They are tangy, and crunchy and the flavor and texture of the garlic and cashews are a perfect compliment.

Adapted from Vegetarian Times (April/May 2011)

Need:
About 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
6 or 7 garlic scapes, chopped
3/4 cup raw cashews, roughly chopped
Sea salt
Fresh cracked pepper
1 bunch dandelion greens, ends trimmed and cut into about 2 inch pieces
1 bunch beet greens, ends trimmed and julienned into about 2 inch pieces
About 3 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar

Do:
In a pan, combine olive oil, scapes and cashews. Cook over low/med heat, stirring continually, until nuts and scapes are golden brown. Add sea salt and fresh cracked pepper.

Add dandelion greens and beet greens to your pan, stir until just combined then turn off heat. Add balsamic vinegar and toss until fully combined.

Note: The greens should just be wilted, not fully cooked through. Turn off heat on greens sooner than later.



Taste greens and add salt and pepper if needed.

Serve:
Transfer to a serving platter or bowl. You can also serve directly onto plates or, as I said above, wrap them in a tortilla with quinoa or goat cheese, if you eat goat cheese.

The crunch is still in the greens, the cashews lend a buttery flavor and crunchy texture, the garlic is tangy and toasty. All around a fantastic side!

Enjoy!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Vegan Egg Salad

We are back. Back from a truly epic weekend. One that will go down in our history books of epicly fantastical and amazing weekends. Warrior Dash rocks and I love our boot camp family. The end.

And I know you must be dying to see pictures, yes? Don't worry. I won't let you down. Especially since I made such a big deal about the green cheerleading skirts.

But first I have a delicious, fairly low carb recipe for you because I now have to recover from said truly epic weekend. In all reality I didn't eat that bad. In fact, in the beginning it felt like a real meal was hard to find.

Considering the truly shit-tastic hotel (think Bates) parked square in the middle of 'Nowhere' and 'Are You Serious?' boasted fare from a gas station and a truck stop, there wasn't a whole lot for this alternative eater.

One of our family members did do a truck stop drive by though, after our late night dance fest, to nosh on a burger as big as his head and as drippy as something that is really really drippy.

I did however, consume basically the equivalent of my five-year-old in assorted beverages. It wasn't the eating people. It wasn't the eating.

Back on track and ready to train for the next psychotic bodily endurance feat: The Gladiator Rock n' Run. As if Warrior Dash wasn't enough, we're now training for this. And our trainer. IS. SERIOUS. Talk about a couple booty kicking workouts. And it's only day two.

On to the recipe: This is my version of egg salad for the vegan. Chickpeas are firm and filling and the combination of fresh crunchy veg and curry makes this a fantastic flavorful 'egg' salad that can be served as a sandwich on bread, as a wrap in lettuce or a tortilla or simply by itself on top of a little green salad. It's my most delicious quick and easy go-to for lunch or a light dinner.


Need:
1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 Tablespoon veganaise
1 Tablespoon spicy brown mustard
2 teaspoons curry powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
2 stalks celery, finely diced
1/2 red bell pepper, finely diced
1/2 heaping cup matchstick carrots
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
Whole butter or bibb lettuce leaves for wrapping

Do:
In a medium bowl, combine chickpeas, veganaise, mustard, curry powder, salt and pepper. Using a potato masher, mash and mix these ingredients until chickpeas are lightly smashed but not completely mashed. You want to keep some of the texture, for sure.

Add celery, bell pepper and carrots to your mix and combine with a spoon or spatula. Taste your mix and add more salt, pepper or even curry if you feel you want more. Add sunflower seeds to your salad and mix again.

At this point your salad is ready, but I like to refrigerate it or let it sit for about 30 minutes, to allow the flavors to fully combine.

Serve:
If using lettuce to wrap, arrange leaves and scoop about 1/4 cup of salad, depending on how large the leaves are, onto each leaf.


The crunch of the veg is enhanced by the lettuce. The chickpeas are hearty and 'meaty' and the curry and mustard give it all a little 'kick'.

So good. So simple. Enjoy!

Oh, and here you go: Some before and after photos of our weekend of madness. So. Much. Fun.

BEFORE:

All clean and looking so jaunty

The Crew

I am a lucky gal. Note the bow. Which somehow managed to stay in!


AND AFTER:
And we had already been hosed off at this point. Seriously.

Warrior Ladies

Friday, July 15, 2011

Vegan Protein Bites

The weekend is here and the Bellingham Warriors are shipping out this afternoon for Warrior Dash Washington. Y'all might want to be a smidge nervous because we are going to be pretty amazing. Don't let the skirts sway your opinion.

I'm hoping the weather cooperates because we're supposed to tailgate tomorrow and the rain will seriously cramp my tailgating style. Umbrella hats are so 1987.

For tailgating food I'm bringing that delicious kale quinoa salad I told you about. I love kale. I love this salad and I especially love that a good portion of the ingredients for this particular salad came from our CSA basket this week.

I am also bringing these delicious little protein bites to help fuel our warrior fire. I was excited when I found the original recipe on the back of an Adams peanut butter sample I received at the Rock and Roll race expo.


I was excited because, as you know, I have that 'thing' with buying things I know I can make myself. I was intrigued by this particular recipe because they not only look delicious, but they are packed with peanut butter and chocolate protein powder and anything chocolate and peanut butter is ok in my book.


I did switch some things up to make them vegan. And different. And I'm still not entirely sure of their particular measurements... their photo looks awfully 'granola-ey' for what they originally called for.

This is my ultra delicious version which boasts my homemade granola (remember that post I promised?), Adams peanut butter and my all time favorite protein powder: Vegan Protein Plus in double chocolate.

I cut them into little cubes because they are pretty dense. Definitely good for a little energy boost or healthy dessert.

Adapted from a recipe courtesy of Adams Natural Peanut Butter
Yield: about 45 small bites

Need:
1 cup double chocolate vegan protein plus protein powder (or chocolate protein powder of your choice)
6 Tablespoons water
3/4 cup Adams creamy peanut butter (stir it)
1/4 cup agave nectar
2 1/2 cups homemade granola with raisins (you can buy it too)
1/2 cup vegan carob chips

Do:
Line a square baking pan with tin foil.

In a medium bowl, combine protein powder and water. Whip with a fork until combined then set aside.

In a small sauce pan, combine peanut butter and agave nectar and heat on low/med. Stir until soft and fully combined. Turn off stove and set aside. Note: if you must, you can microwave for about 30 seconds. I simply avoid the microwave at all costs though.

Add peanut butter mix to protein powder mix and stir well until fully incorporated and smooth.

In a little bigger bowl, combine granola and carob chips. Add the peanut butter protein mix to your granola and stir to combine. Note: it is easier to fold it together with clean hands.

Once fully combined, transfer mix to your prepared baking pan and press into the sides and evenly across the entire pan. Use a piece of parchment paper to press the mix down firm and even.

Fold the excess foil down over the parchment paper and chill for about 1 hour.

Remove and use a large knife to cut into cubes.


Serve:
These are fantastic little bites on their own. They would also make a lovely quick dessert. Imagine: getting your protein needs and chocolate fix all in one.


Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Homemade Granola

In my opinion, every hippie mom should have a good granola in her profile. Even if you're one of those modern type hippies that shaves and showers and likes pedicures.

I decided this yesterday. After I made granola.


I'm working on some 'provisions' for my booty sistas (and brothas) for this weekend's Warrior Dash. One of those 'provisions', which is my today project, requires granola.

And, as you know if you've been around for a while, I have this 'thing' (issue, perhaps?) with purchasing stuff I know I can make myself. It 's an affliction might be kind of an affliction. But it's an affliction I'm happy to live with because making your own stuff is just better. And 'funner.'

So I made granola. And the neat thing about granola is that you can basically clean out your cupboards because there really aren't any 'rules' as to 'what' you have to put in your granola. And that's just plain awesome.


On a hunt for rolled oats in my pantry, I found roughage in the form of flax and sesame seeds. Because everybody knows awesome granola is all about the roughage. And the taste. And this granola? I swear it will turn you into a granola head before you even know what hit you.

'It tastes like an oatmeal cookie!' said my mom one totally non-biased taster. It also makes the house smell delicious. Good enough to eat. Oh, and as most of my recipes go... it's also simple.

So, off you go, hippie people. Make some granola. Because it's so much better that Lucky Charms.

Need:
2 1/2 cups rolled oats
1/4 cup flax seeds
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch mace (less than 1/4 teaspoon)
1 teaspoon salt
3 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1/4 cup plus 2 Tablespoons agave nectar plus a bit more for drizzling
1/4 cup brown sugar, simply scooped, not packed down
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 cup raisins

Do:
Preheat oven to 325 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, combine oats, flax seeds, sesame seeds, coconut, cinnamon, mace and salt. Using your clean hands, toss to ensure everything is evenly incorporated.

In a smaller bowl, combine oil, agave, brown sugar and vanilla. Using a fork, whip it until combined and smooth.

Pour wet mixture over dry mixture and use your clean hands to mix well, squeezing and pressing it together.

Once everything is completely incorporated, spread your granola mixture evenly onto your parchment lined baking sheet.


Bake for 10 minutes then, using a spatula, gently flip your granola and move it around a bit, paying special attention to the sides of the pan because that is where your granola will brown first.

Drizzle just a bit more agave nectar in a zig zag formation on top of your granola and bake another 10 minutes then gently flip again to ensure the granola at the edges of the pan isn't browning faster than the rest.

Check your granola at this point. If it is lightly toasty brown, turn the oven off and let it sit in there for another 5 minutes or so. If it is not yet toasty brown, continue to bake in 5 minute intervals, checking as you go, until it is toasty brown.

Once you are happy with the 'toast' on your granola, remove from oven, sprinkle raisins on top and use your spatula to gently incorporate. Then allow granola to fully cool on the pan.

When fully cool, transfer to an airtight container. Or eat it right away. Or use it in a recipe.

Serve:
This granola is fantastic straight up or paired with So Delicious coconut milk. It also makes a fantastic soy or coconut yogurt topper. And as I said, it is lovely in any type of homemade goody which requires granola.

It is filling and homey with the aroma and flavor of cinnamon, mace and raisins. Like an oatmeal cookie. Only healthier. And appropriate for breakfast. Wait. Cookies aren't appropriate for breakfast? :)


Enjoy!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Kale Quinoa Salad

As if a half marathon weren't enough, t-minus five days until another shorter, albeit far more insane event. The Warrior Dash in North Bend.


3.55 hellish miles. 3.55 miles not being hellish on their own; oh no. These 3.55 have 11 obstacles ranging from some kind of dark, belly crawling tunnel that straight up makes my stomach turn, to a giant wall with a rope to climb over, some kind of balancing act on two-by-fours, tires and old cars, fire jumping, crawling under barbed wire, a muddy slip and slide... the list goes on people. The. List. Goes. On.

How in the H.E. double hockey sticks did I get talked in to this?

And the best part? I have to do it all in a green cheerleading skirt. A green cheerleading skirt that barely covers my hiney. And I am so not exaggerating when I say that.

The awesome thing about it? Honey is doing it too. And he is also wearing a green cheerleading skirt. Bah!

We will also be in good company since a group of fellow booty campers, instructor included, are all running the race and we're all wearing green cheerleading skirts. It'll be a sight, that's for sure.

So in the last few days, the booty people have been thinking tailgate party, because really the only reason we're doing this thing is so we can grill up some stuff and drink some beer in a field on a sunny day. Wearing green cheerleading skirts.

My job? A salad. (And some other stuff I'm saving for another post.) And since our bootcamp 'color' is green, I'm thinking a 'green'(ish) salad is in order.


This salad is, by far, one of my most favorite salads. Period. I love it because there is so much going on in color, flavor and texture. I love it because it's just plain delicious. I love it because it's hearty and lasts a long time.

You can eat it for breakfast, lunch and dinner. And we will be. While drinking beer and straight up co-chillin'. In green cheerleading skirts. Awesome.

Yield: A lot. Enough to feed a picnic full of party people

Need:
1 cup quinoa
2 cups water or vegetable broth
2 cloves garlic, finely diced
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 Tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
About 1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon spicy brown or dijon mustard
About 1/4 teaspoon sea salt - maybe more depending on your taste
About 1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
1 bunch curly kale, de-stemmed and chopped into bite sized pieces
1 bunch parsley, chopped
1 red onion, finely diced
1 package matchstick carrots
About 2 or 3 cups sugar snap peas, de-stemmed and cut into about 1/2 inch pieces
1 to 2 packages 3 bean munchies (large bean sprout blend)
About 1 cup slivered almonds

Do:
In a pot, bring quinoa and water or vegetable broth to a boil. Boil for about 1 minute then reduce heat and simmer, covered until quinoa soaks up all liquid, reducing heat as you go.

In a lidded jar, combine dressing ingredients: garlic, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, lemon zest, mustard, salt and pepper. Cover and shake until fully emmulsified. Set aside.

In a large bowl, combine kale, parsley, onion, carrot, snap peas and 3 bean munchies. Mix to combine.

When quinoa is done, transfer to a cookie tray to cool. Once fully cooled, add quinoa and almonds to your bowl of vegetables and mix well.

Give your dressing a shake then add about half to your salad. Fold gently to combine and taste. If it needs more dressing add it. Note: I always start with less and add more because you can always add more but you can't take it away.

Serve:
The awesome thing about this salad is you can make it ahead of time and it's good for up to about three days! The kale is so hearty it stands up to the dressing perfectly. And really, it's almost better the next day because everything is marinated and beautiful and delicious.

This salad is a great side dish; it's also really good on it's own. And yes, I have eaten it for breakfast.

Enjoy! And if you're going to the Warrior Dash, see you there!!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Chilled Asian Noodle Salad

Honey is on vacation which means we're having a stay-cation. Which I used to laugh at. I mean, who wants to just hang around at home when you don't have to work. Apparently we do.

Note to self: never make fun of something because it will most likely be something you do in the future. And enjoy.

So Honey gets to choose the menu for the week and here's one of his choices. The glorious noodle salad that I have made before and I love.


I think you will love it too. It's simple, beautiful, filling and bursting with flavor It is one of my favorite 'ladies who lunch' meals; it's also perfect in large quantities while you're sitting in the sunshine on the back deck. Just sayin'.

Need:

1 pkg soba noodles (about 12 oz)
Sea salt
Fresh cracked pepper
1 english cucumber, de-seeded and diced
2 cups matchstick carrots (do yourself a favor and buy the package... unless you have a magical matchsticking machine)
1 orange bell pepper, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 bunch (about 7) green onions, diced
1/2 to 3/4 package shelled edamame, cooked
Fresh arugula
Sesame seeds, toasted

For the dressing:
6 Tablespoons sushi vinegar (or do rice wine vinegar with 1 Tablespoon agave nectar)
3 Tablespoons tamari
3 Tablespoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
Salt
Pepper

Optional:
Marinated tofu
Seitan with an asian flare
Do:
Cook soba noodles until al dente. Make sure to NOT over cook them. Once done, drain and rinse with cold water to stop cooking process. Set aside.

Combine all dressing ingredients in a sealed jar and shake very well. Set aside.

Combine cucumber, carrots, orange and red bell peppers, green onion and edamame in a large bowl. Give your dressing another good shake then pour about 1/4 of the dressing in with the veg and toss.

Add noodles and another about 1/4 of the dressing and gently toss. Set salad aside to lightly marinate while you prepare your greens.

Place fresh arugula in a medium bowl and very lightly drizzle with dressing. Toss and get ready to plate.
Serve:
On a plate, start by arranging fresh arugula. Top arugula with an appropriate portion of soba salad. If you are using marinated tofu or seitan as extra protein, arrange on top of the noodles.

Garnish with toasted sesame seeds and serve.


This is such a lovely and simple salad that is bursting with flavor. It's perfect for a summer lunch or light dinner.


Enjoy!

Soba Noodles

Friday, July 1, 2011

Mushroom Crostini

Right along side garlic and onions, mushrooms are one of my favorite ingredients. Something about the deliciously earthy little fungi make my heart go pitter patter.

As a result I cook with a lot of mushrooms. And garlic. And onion.

It's also pretty obvious that I like to eat 'small' food. Appetizer food. I have explained it before. It's just more fun.

And so I present to you a festival of fungi fantastic for the Fourth of July. On toast.


Ok, I might have gone a little overboard there for a minute. But I like the 'on toast' bit. And the crostini is worthy of going over the board just a smidge.

The earthy, pungent combination of the different 'shroom flavors paired with their individual 'chewy' and 'smooth' textures is just beautiful. Top that off with the heavenly aroma and flavor of fresh thyme, all topped on a perfectly toasted piece of garlic crostini and yes. We have a winner.


Yield: about 6-8 crostini

Need:
1 batch mushroom pate (super simple!)
1 loaf artisan bread, preferrably garlic
Extra virgin olive oil
Truffle salt
3 cloves garlic, chopped fine
1/2 red onion, chopped fine
5-6 shitake mushrooms, bit of the end chopped off and sliced
5-6 crimini mushrooms, sliced
5-6 oyster mushrooms, de-ended and sliced
The leaves of 2-3 sprigs fresh thyme, chopped (just the leaves)
Sea salt
Fresh cracked pepper
1 loaf artisan bread, preferrably garlic

Do:
Preheat oven to 375.

Slice your bread at an angle into about 3/4 to 1/2 inch thick pieces, depending on how thick you want your bread to be.

Arrange on a lined baking tray, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with truffle salt.

Meanwhile, in a medium pan, heat a little olive oil and sautee garlic and onions for about 1-2 minutes on medium heat. Add shitake and crimini mushrooms and let cook, stirring for another 2-3 minutes.

Once shitakes and criminis are barely soft, add the oyster mushrooms and thyme. Stir and let cook another 2-3 minutes until all mushrooms are tender.

Taste your mixture and add salt and pepper as needed.

While your mixture is cooking and when your oven is ready, put tray in and toast bread on one side for about 5 minutes or until very lightly toasted brown. Flip each piece and repeat for the other side.


Remove and turn off oven.

Serve:
To prepare your crostini, first spread a thin layer of your mushroom pate evenly across the top of your toasty bread.


Then scoop a healthy amount of mushrooms atop each crostini, pressing down with your spoon as you go, so the mixture doesn't fall off when you move it around.


Arrange on a serving tray and you are ready to go.

If you don't mind cheese, you can also shave some sliver thin bits of aged manchego or even aged asiago on top, for a little something extra.

These are a great appetizer; they also make a lovely light meal served alongside a big green salad.

Enjoy!

Mushrooms
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