May 21, 2014

Picnic Time

As the weather gets warmer and the brilliant shades of green decorate the countryside, take time to sit outdoors and enjoy a meal. Bring your favorite foods, and remember to drink plenty of water.
Here are some recipe to inspire your next picnic.

Tahini Date Cookies

Tahini, roasted sesame seed butter, is one of the best vegan sources of calcium to promote healthy bones, teeth and heart.

You will need:
1/3 cup tahini
1/4 cup water
1/3 cup dates, chopped
3 tablespoons maple syrup
1 1/2 cups oats
pinch salt

1/2 teaspoon each: nutmeg, cinnamon and cardamom
3 Tbsp olive oil

Preheat oven to 350.
In a food processor mix together the dates, water, tahini, and maple until creamy and blended.
Pour into a bowl and mix together with the oats, salt, spices and olive oil.
Scoop out spoonfuls of the batter on a cookie sheet.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, to desired crispness.

Tacos

This is a nourishing and creative way to enjoy a gluten-free feast and honor the gastronomic traditions of Central and South America.

For 6 people, you will need:
12 corn tortillas
1 cup queso fresco or any cheese you like
1 quart cooked beans -  I like pinto or black beans
2 fresh limes, cut into quarters
1 cup purple cabbage, shredded
salsa fresca 

To prepare salsa fresca, chop:
2 ripe tomatoes
1 red onion
2 cloves garlic
2 handfuls cilantro or parsley if you prefer

In a bowl, mix these together with:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
juice of 1 lime

Assemble tacos, drizzle with salsa, and enjoy!

Avocado Hummus

This Middle Eastern dish is full of vegan protein and fiber from the chickpeas and polyunsaturated fat from the avocados.

You will need:
1 ripe avocado, cut in half, skin and stone removed
One 14 ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed OR 1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas
One clove garlic, chopped
1 tablespoon tahiniJuice of 1 lemon
½ teaspoon each: paprika, coriander, and cumin 
1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
6 pieces of pita bread for serving

Blend all of the ingredients in a food processor until smooth.
Chill in the fridge for one hour before serving with pita bread.


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