A Rustic Scallion & Chive Panade

The combination of simmering broth, Gruyere cheese, onions, garlic, chives, and sourdough combine into a decadent pot of winter magic.

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The panade recipe in The Zuni Cafe Cookbook came to my attention when a friend baked a beautiful double-version of it in an over-sized AGA dutch oven and served it at a dinner party years ago. It was the show-stopping centerpiece of a meal flanked by a beautiful winter green + chicory salad and gem-shaded glasses of wine. The combination of bubbling cubes of brothy bread and caramelized onions silkily merging with molten threads of cheese is knee-buckling. It’s the perfect example of a short list of the simplest ingredients coming together into something much more than then sum of their parts.My Favorite Panade Recipe
I’ve baked variations of this panade in the years since, and it never disappoints. It’s endlessly adaptable, meaning that you can add seasonal ingredients to suit your fancy. For example, in my case, I do a vegetarian version by switching up the broth, and I like my onions on the caramelized side of the spectrum. I’ll add whatever sautéed greens or roasted vegetables I have around. Judy also listed a range of ideas and variations in the cookbook, so if you have it (and you should!) be sure to have a glance at those for year-round inspiration. Her original had chard. I use lots of scallions in mine. In short, it’s one of those IYKYK recipes. Molly Wizenberg knew what was up way back in 2005 when she wrote about the Judy panade recipe here


I’m going to dive in and answer a number of questions here that might pop up. The ingredient list for this panade couldn’t be simpler, but the devil is in the details and navigating personal preferences.Close-up of Panade in Cast-iron Casserole

What Kind of Bread for this Panade?

The short answer is a good, chewy artisan sourdough loaf. That said, I will also argue that a lot of this is personal preference. If you bake sourdough at home, by all means, use that. Either one of these choice will likely result in a nicely structured panade with nice distinction between some of the components. The bread choice is such a big deal in this recipe, each one will impact your end result immensely. I learned the hard way when I used a more commercial sourdough loaf to make the panade one night – much finer crumb, less/no chewiness, and I’m guessing it was 100% all-purpose flour. The resulting panade broke down too far, into an unstructured slump. You want the bread to put up a fight and hold a bit of tension. Not go to mush altogether.
Panade before baking

Crust or no Crust?

There are arguments for both. The panade here retained the crust on the bread cubes. But I’ve done crustless versions before. If you decide you love a super oozy, silky panade, go crustless. If you like your panade to have more structure, keep your crust. Or go 50/50!Preparing bread in large bowl before assembling panade.

What is the Best Broth for Panade?

We tend to use whatever good-tasting broth we have around or in the freezer (defrost). I love an herby broth for this scallion and chive version, but if you’re in a pinch grab a bouillon cube or two and go from there. Judy uses a chicken broth in her recipe (which doesn’t work for vegetarians), but I’ve had great results with mushroom broth, and corn broth along with roasted cherry tomatoes and goat cheese in the panade. I’ve even used spicy bean broth.Ingredients for panade arranged on countertop.

Can I use a Different Cheeses in this Panade?

You can! I call for Gruyere, but mention in the headnote that one of my favorite versions ended up being a blend of Gruyere, Parmesan, and Pecorino cheeses. I prefer slightly assertive cheeses for the panade, with at least a portion being a cheese that oozes when melted. For example, I wouldn’t reach for a mozzarella – too mild.Sourdough bread for panade recipe.

Can I Make this Ahead of Time?

I often make the caramelized onions ahead of time. And then any other fillings that I might be able to pre-roast. 

Soupy versus Dry-ish Panades

Again, this is personal preference. After you bake panade once or twice you’ll start to get a sense of what style you prefer. You can go the soup-is route by adding more broth. Or lean into more of a stuffing vibe with less broth. The recipe below aims to hit the mark where the panade is transitioning from a stuffing-like texture, into silkier magic, not-yet-in-soup territory.
My Favorite Panade Recipe
This recipe is a warming, hearty, winter warmer. It looks so rustic, but the silkiness down in the depths is what’s incredibly surprising. It’s the ultimate comfort dish that I hope you enjoy as much as I have over the years. Thanks to Jamie & Chanda & Bonni for our SF panade dinners, we miss them (and you) so much!

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Grilled Veggie Kebabs

Spicy grilled veggie kebabs made with a flavor-packed yogurt marinade and mix of vegetables with paneer cheese. A favorite that you can make ahead, and grill or bake year-round.

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A couple of weeks back we drove east from Los Angeles to camp in Joshua Tree. From there we headed south to Anza-Borrego Desert State Park – if you’ve never been, it’s magical. That said, the weather was conflicted! It was hot during the days, then big rain one night, and white-knuckle windy while driving. We agreed that the highlight on the cooking front was these spicy yogurt-slathered veggie kebabs. I make them often at home, year-round, but they are extra special when enjoyed under the stars. I love that they can be grilled or baked, all your ingredients marinate in one container until you’re ready to skewer & cook your kebabs, and you can adapt to whatever ingredients you have on hand.
Grilled Veggie Kebabs on Enamelware Plate 

Top of the List Veggie Kebabs

I tend to prep some easy meals whenever we go camping and these spicy yogurt-slathered veggie kebabs are always top of the list. They are pictured here made with paneer cheese, artichoke hearts, mushrooms, and onions. I’ll talk more about the marinade down below. The recipe you’ll see below is written incorporating the ingredients pictured, but I just want to make sure you don’t feel limited to this combination. Half the fun in cooking veggie kebabs is playing around with what you put on the skewers. For example…

Favorite Ingredients for Veggie Kebabs

  • mushrooms: I can’t remember the last time I cooked veggie kebabs without mushrooms as a main component – they’re a must. Have fun with different types – the standards (cremini, button, Portobello,etc.) are all great and easy to source. Also keep an eye out for king oyster mushrooms, maitake, matsutake, oyster, lobster mushrooms and the like. Mix it up with more than one type if you can.
  • frozen artichoke hearts: I like to thaw these the day I plan on marinating the veggie kebab ingredients, then incorporate them into the mix. I usually thread the artichokes onto the skewer through both ends, so they’re folded over, although I’m noticing I didn’t do that in these photos. Meant to!
  • paneer: once I figured out just how well paneer freezes, I always have some on hand. Whenever I go to the Indian market I stock up on 4-5 blocks, then freeze most of them for later use. Unlike tofu, which changes texture dramatically after freezing, paneer stays very similar to its pre-frozen state once thawed.
  • peppers: I love adding shishito peppers to my kebabs, but red or green bell peppers are easy to find and popular.
  • corn – cut into rounds or half-moons: When corn is in season this is a great addition.
  • tofu: I don’t typically use tofu for these veggie kebabs, I much prefer the paneer with this marinade and flavor profile. That said, if you’re looking to make a vegan or dairy-free version, you can certainly experiment with tofu and a dairy-free yogurt.
  • broccoli or cauliflower florets: I always regret not adding more broccoli to the kebabs.
  • onion wedges and/or shallots: These add great flavor and structure. The key here is cutting the shallot or onion large enough to easily thread onto the skewer yet small enough that it cooks through. 

Airstream in Joshua Tree California before Grilling Veggie Kebabs

The Marinade 

There are a lot of things I love about this marinade. It’s yogurt based and the sort of marinade you might see used to tenderize meat in many traditional cuisines (Indian tandoor, Turkish, Greek, etc.) before grilling or placing in an oven. Tenderizing meat isn’t a factor here, but using yogurt marinades, I love the way they brown, set and caramelize when heated (especially on direct flame). Yogurt marinades often have a yogurt base paired with a citrus juice (often lemon), and then whatever herbs, spices, salts, and seasonings beyond that. Here you’ll see I like a jolt of mustard, a good amount of spice, relish for dimension, and some turmeric for earthiness and color. 

Veggie Kebabs = Make Ahead

The other great thing about this marinade is the ingredients can marinate for a while if needed. Up to three, maybe four days – depending on what you’re marinating. I do it regularly, where I grill veggie kebabs one night, but don’t use up all the ingredients. Then come back two days later and skewer up the rest of the kebabs. So basically, whip up the marinade, and toss your ingredients. Then whenever you’re ready, skewer and cook.

WB & P in Joshua Tree Campground

How Should I Cook these Veggie Kebabs?

You have options! The short answer is to use whatever you’ve got. I typically go for the grill, but it really depends a lot on the time of year and where I am. These kebabs are equally good baked in a hot oven on a sheet pan, or baked (also on a sheet pan) in a pizza oven. We have one of those propane-powered portable pizza ovens and that’s what you see in the video below. We’ve found keeping them toward the front when using the pizza oven works best, and rotate often.

Veggie Kebab Video

Tips for Making the Best Veggie Kebabs

There are a couple things to keep in mind on this front, but in general keep it simple and embrace a marinade you love. Beyond that:

  • Start with great in-season ingredients.
  • Cut ingredients into similar sizes: This makes for nicely balanced kebabs where ingredients are more likely to cook evenly.
  • Grill or bake using appropriate heat: You want the inside of each ingredient to cook nicely in the same amount of time it takes to develop good color and flavor on the outsides. If you cook too hot the outside could burn while the middle remains raw – not good!

Joshua Tree Campground

What to Serve with Veggie Skewers

So many things work great alongside these veggies kebabs. I love to serve them over a flavor-boosted slather in a shallow bowl. For example, something like this Beet Caviar, or this Mung Bean Hummus, this Seed Pate, or the Peace, Love & Energy Dip. I also love to add a grain component and these kebabs are great alongside a big scoop of quinoa or something along the lines of this Super Orange Citrus Rice, this Sesame Coconut Rice, or Bryant Terry’s Amazing Green Rice.

Veggie Kebabs on a Plate

Do I Need to Soak Wooden Skewers Before Grilling?

The last thing I’l mention before we get to the recipe is that I always forget to soak my wooden skewers before grilling. I intend to soak them for about 30-40 minutes before skewering, but similar to the way I always burn pine nuts, I never remember to soak the skewers. What to do? It’s ok, even ten minutes is better than nothing, do what you can. If you’re short on soaking time another thing you can do is really stack up the ingredients so there is minimal wood exposure. It makes the kebabs a bit more challenging to handle, but the skewers will hold up better.

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Simple Beet Fettuccine

Fresh pasta, you can do it! A beautiful, fun, and simple way to make homemade fettuccine noodles.

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If you’ve never made homemade pasta before, this is a great beet-boosted take on fettuccine. Fresh pasta is a lot less time-intensive than you might think (really!). You knead the dough by hand, and you cut the pasta dough into fettuccine noodles in one of two ways – by hand, or with a pasta machine. The pasta machine is more precise, but there is a lot of charm in hand-cut noodles – both are special.

Simple Beet Fettuccine

I love this beet juice-spiked fettuccine, the beets lend a beautiful pink color, and you can play around with how pale or saturated your noodles are by adding more or less beet juice. You can, of course, substitute other liquids, or use yellow (or orange) beets. If you have success with these noodles, use the recipe as a jumping off point for other flavors.

Simple Beet Fettuccine

A couple of tips – don’t skimp on the kneading time. You want a silky, even-textured dough before wrapping it, and then letting it rest (and hydrate) a bit.

Simple Beet Fettuccine

One detail to emphasize here, I call for semola flour here (different from semolina) – semola is fine, powdery and talc-like durum wheat, semolina is often coarser. I blend it with either whole wheat pastry flour, or finely ground rye flour here.

Simple Beet Fettuccine

You can enjoy the noodles in endless ways. They are beautiful in a simple broth with herbs. We had them for lunch topped with lots of sautéed mushrooms, a splash of cashew milk, poppy seeds, scallions, toasted walnuts, and a big squeeze of lemon.

Simple Beet Fettuccine

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Ten Best Bean Recipes

A round-up of the best bean recipes on my site. I’ve cooked a lot of beans over the years, and these recipes are ones I often circle back to.

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Wayne and I (and Polly!) have been camping our way down the California coast this week. It has been lots of shimmering ocean vistas, moody morning fog followed by glorious afternoon sunshine, French press coffee at picnic benches, and visits to two places I’ve wanted to see for a long time: Ganna Walska Lotusland & the Malibu Hindu Temple. I hope to have some pics and a new recipe to share soon! In the meantime, I thought a round-up of the best bean recipes in the archives might be helpful. I’ve cooked a lot of beans over the years, and these recipes are ones I often circle back to. Enjoy!

How to Cook Beans

How to Cook Beans that are Tender, Creamy & Nearly Perfect:

The best way I know to cook beans, and the one I always return to. A version of the much-loved Tuscan bean recipe – fagioli al fiasco. Traditionally, beans were baked overnight in a Chianti bottle placed near the embers of that night’s fire. While not exactly authentic (no fire here), I do a riff on the general idea, using a low-temperature oven and enamel-lined pot. Get the recipe.

Homemade Refried Beans

Homemade Refried Beans:

If you’ve only ever had refried beans from a can, this should be the next recipe you cook. Homemade refried beans are a game-changer. Use just the right amount of olive oil to cook well-minced onions along with the beans and plenty of their broth. Smoked paprika adds a hint of smoky depth you can’t quite put a finger on, my secret ingredient is a finishing splash of freshly squeezed lemon juice. I think it’s the element that helps keep the beans from seeming too heavy, and the acidity counters the starchiness of the beans. Get the recipe.

Giant Chipotle White Beans

Giant Chipotle White Beans:

A riff on Laurence Jossel’s fantastic NOPA beans – plump, creamy beans baked in a bright, chunky chipotle tomato sauce, topped with crunchy breadcrumbs, plenty of oozy queso fresco, and an emerald drizzle of cilantro pesto. Get the recipe.

Fire Broth Noodle Soup

Fire Broth Noodle Soup:

Soup of the year in our house. It’s loaded with good things like beans, greens, and pasta and the broth is spicy and invigorating with lots of pepper, garlic, ginger, and chiles. Get the recipe.

Fire Broth Noodle Soup

Mung Bean Hummus:

To get the smoothest, creamiest hummus using chickpeas, you have to peel them. For creamy hummus, without the extra effort, I use mung beans instead. They work beautifully. Top the hummus with shallot oil, fresh chives, and za’atar. Get the recipe.

Heirloom Bean and Mushroom “Carnitas” Casserole

Heirloom Bean and Mushroom “Carnitas” Casserole:

A favorite Rancho Gordo heirloom bean casserole recipe. The smell of garlic and herbs baking alongside the beans, simmering tomatoes, and mushrooms will bring neighbors in off the sidewalk. Get the recipe.

Carrot, Dill & White Bean Salad

Carrot, Dill & White Bean Salad:

Warm, coin-shaped slices of pan-fried carrots, white beans, and herbs tossed with a tangy-sweet lemon shallot dressing. It tastes good the day you make it, even better the day after. Get the recipe.

Ribollita

Ribollita – The Tuscan Stew you Should be Eating Regularly:

Ribollita, a beautifully thick Tuscan stew made with dark greens, lots of beans, vegetables, olive oil, and thickened with day-old bread. One of my favorites. Get the recipe.

How to Cook Beans

Dried Fava Soup with Mint and Guajillo Chiles:

Easily one of the best, most interesting soups I’ve cooked in years. Adapted from a recipe in Rick Bayless’s Mexican Kitchen – a dried fava bean and roasted tomato base topped with a fascinating cider-kissed tangy/sweet quick-pickled chile topping. Get the recipe.

Pan-fried Corona Beans & Kale

Pan-fried Corona Beans & Kale:

Love these – white beans pan-fried until they’re golden, with kale, Parmesan, lemon, walnuts, and nutmeg. Get the recipe.

And a little bonus! The lead photo image is these beautiful Giant Lemon Fennel Beans. Enjoy!

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Thousand Layer Lasagna

My favorite and best lasagna recipe. Dozens and dozens of whisper-thin sheets of fresh pasta brushed with the most vibrant red tomato sauce imaginable all intersecting layer after layer of warm, oozy, fresh mozzarella.

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If I told you this was the best lasagna recipe, would you believe me? Let’s give it a try. This is thousand layer lasagna. I first posted the recipe in 2006, and still make it all these years later. Imagine dozens and dozens of whisper-thin sheets of fresh pasta brushed with a simple, vibrant red tomato sauce, threaded with layer after layer of warm, oozy, fresh mozzarella. Where the sauce and cheese and pasta touch the pan, particularly in the corners, everything gets crunchy and caramelized. The corner pieces, omg.
Lasagna on a Table with a Piece on a White Plate
I should say, this isn’t a lasagna path for the faint-hearted. This lasagna takes commitment, patience, and lots of time. Think weekend project. This is in part because you’re using fresh pasta, and, well, there are a thousand layers. That said, I’ve streamlined the process a lot over the years. And will call out those tips in the recipe below.Lasagna in a Glass Baking Dish on a Marble Counter Top

How to Make Lasagna: The Basics

  • Start by making the sauce: the sauce I use for this lasagna is super simple, vibrant, and a wink spicy.
  • Prepare the pasta: You’ll either be using homemade pasta or purchase fresh pasta sheets. No dried pasta noodles for this lasagna. The key will be getting your pasta sheet extra thin before boiling.
  • Assemble the lasagna: You’re on the home stretch.
  • Bake:  Until golden, hot, and bubbly – serve!

Close up of a Baked Lasagna Unsliced with Cheese on Top

Homemade Pasta versus Store Bought

Originally, I would always make this lasagna with homemade pasta sheets. Eventually it dawned on me that I could buy pasta sheets and shave some time off the production. I’d say it cuts your time in half. The main thing, in either case, is that you want to get your pasta sheets super thin. So, even if I buy pre-made pasta sheets, I run them through my pasta machine at home a couple times to make them even thinner.
Thin Sheets of Fresh Pasta Flat on a Table
I’m using homemade pasta here, but the process is basically the same if you’re using store-bought pasta sheets.
Pasta Machine in Process of making Pasta Sheets for Lasagna

Can I Freeze Lasagna?

Yes! Absolutely. You can store it, assembled, either baked or unbaked.

  • To freeze an unbaked lasagna: Line your baking pan with a layer of parchment paper. Assemble the lasagna in the baking dish, allow to cool completely, and freeze until solid. Once frozen, transfer the frozen block of lasagna from the dish, wrap completely with foil and freeze for up to a month or two. 
  • To finish an unbaked frozen lasagna: Remove all layers of foil, you can decide if you want to leave the parchment or not, and transfer to the original baking dish. Allow to thaw completely before baking as directed.
  • To freeze baked lasagna: If you know you’re going to freeze your fully baked lasagna, line your pan with foil, and then a layer of parchment paper. Assemble the lasagna as directed, and then bake. I tend to undertake a shade here, knowing I’ll be reheating later.Let it cool completely after baking, and then freeze solid. Transfer the frozen lasagna out of the baking dish, wrap tightly in foil, and freeze for up to a month or two.
  • Reheating a baked lasagna: remove the lasagna from the freeze and remove the foil. Transfer to the original baking dish, and allow to thaw completely. Cover with foil and bake as directed until golden and bubbly. 

Assembling Lasagna in Glass Baking Dish with Pasta and Tomato Sauce and Cheese
This is a good photo (above) demonstrating the ideal thickness of your pasta for this lasagna. The photo above shows you the amount of sauce you’re aiming for, as well as mozzarella.
Pre-boiled Lasagna Noodles on Countertop
What you are seeing in the photo above is the pasta sheets boiled and ready for assembly. Because of the olive oil in the cooling water you use, overlapping the pasta sheets here isn’t a problem. They separate relatively easily.
Unbaked Lasagna in Glass Baking Dish
Ready for the oven! This is what it looks like fully assembled and ready to bake. Of course you can experiment with different pans and baking dishes. You can make extra pasta and sauce and go extra deep dish. Once you get the hang here, you can take the general idea and run with it.
Close-up Overhead Shot of Baked Lasagna

Thousand Layer Lasagna Variations

Today I’m sharing the tomato-based “starter” version of this lasagna, but feel free to experiment through the seasons. I’ve done roasted butternut squash + brown butter, or pesto and ricotta – play around, but keep the sauces + fillings simple and (key!) not too chunky. Part of the magic comes from the baklava-like layering of the pasta, one on top of the next. There’s just enough going on between each layer to keep it all moist, flavorful, and feathery-light. Well, as feathery-light as lasagna gets.Individual Shot of Lasagna on a White Plate

This is such a fun lasagna to make. Particularly if you’re not in a hurry. Have fun, it’s worth the payoff when it comes out of the oven! 

If you’re looking for more pasta inspiration, here’s where you can learn to make fresh pasta. Homemade cavatelli is a blast, and I love this pesto forever, especially with this gnocchi

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Super Orange Citrus Rice

This incredible citrus rice is flooded with orange juice, flecked with celery and carrots, and boosted with a packet of French onion dip mix. It’s beautiful, delicious, and if you’re in a rice or grain rut, it’s just the thing to get you out of it. This Super Orange Citrus Rice is also the perfect […]

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This incredible citrus rice is flooded with orange juice, flecked with celery and carrots, and boosted with a packet of French onion dip mix. It’s beautiful, delicious, and if you’re in a rice or grain rut, it’s just the thing to get you out of it. This Super Orange Citrus Rice is also the perfect base for a rice bowl, and I love using leftovers the next day for a citrusy-y take on fried rice.

Super Orange Citrus Rice in a Serving Bowl
I cook rice a couple times a week. Half the time I’ll make it straight and simple – water, rice, and a bit of salt. The other times I like to mix it up with different broths, infusions, and favorite flavors, ingredients and textures. A lot of you know how much I love a good rice situation – I included a whole section of ideas in the back of Super Natural Simple. I also constantly revisit Bryant Terry’s Amazing Green Rice, this Congee with Brown Rice and Turmeric, and this herby rice situation. Recently, this super orange citrus rice has been in high-rotation. Here are the details!Super Orange Citrus Rice in a Kitchen on a Counter

Citrus Rice Inspiration

One of the things I love about flea markets, estate and yard sales is finding and browsing old cookbooks. I come across a lot of community cookbooks, and always have my eyes peeled for books that are special, unusually, and/or regionally specific. Today’s recipe was inspired by a cookbook I picked up a few years ago, published by Sunkist in 1968. It is cover-to-cover recipes that are citrus inspired – note the sub-title: lemons, tangerines – citrus treasures of the west – oranges, grapefruits. 

A few of the recipes caught my attention. In particular, there is an orange rice recipe that calls for “instant minced onions.” I imagined that would add a nice seasoning element to a citrus rice. I tend to keep French onion soup mix on hand to make the French Onion Strata in Super Natural Simple, and have dehydrated onions in my pantry as well.  Today’s recipe evolved from there. I love the way the onion helps counter the sweetness of the orange juice, keeping the whole dish squarely in the savory camp.
Super Orange Citrus Rice Surrounded by Plates and Ready to Eat
Super Orange Citrus Rice Surrounded by Plates and Ready to Eat

What Kind of Rice to Use?

I’ve been using brown basmati rice for this recipe. Short grain brown rice should also work, you might need to adjust the cooking time a bit though. I’ve tested a blend of half brown basmati with half white basmati and it wasn’t great. Unsurprisingly, the white grains really blew out and over cooked while the brown rice grains finished cooking.

The general rule of thumb here is yes, you can likely use your favorite rice, whatever it is. You should simply adjust the amount of liquid and cooking time according to whatever you typically use for 2 cups of rice. So, for example, if you’re using 2 cups of white rice, scale back the orange juice and water called for in the recipe from 4 cups to 3 cups (or 3 1/4 cups total liquid). Hope that makes sense. It’s a long way of saying you can likely make this with success with whatever rice you have on hand.

Super Orange Citrus Rice Surrounded by Plates and Ready to Eat

Make Citrus Rice into a Meal

You can easily add another hearty element to this rice and make a one bowl meal. You see the citrus rice pictured here topped with a bit of simply marinated, baked tofu. It’s just slabs of thinly sliced extra-firm tofu tossed in 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 tablespoon wasabi paste, and 2 teaspoons soy sauce and baked until golden in a 375F oven. Wasabi paste can be tricky to come by, and when I’m out of it I’ll substitute a favorite curry paste or tobanjan paste. Throw some broccoli or cauliflower florets into the oven with the tofu for some added veg.

Alternately, I like to make a thin omelette with an egg or two, slice it thinly, and use that in place of the tofu. And before I forget, if your celery is extra leafy, be sure to make your own celery salt! It’s really wonderful on this rice, but also on all sorts of soups and salads.

Leftover Ideas

This recipe makes a good amount of citrus rice, and we often have leftovers. It’s SO good the next day, perfect for a quick fried rice for lunch, or easy dinner. The citrus element is really fantastic and unexpected if you aren’t in the know. 

If you’re looking for more rice recipes I have so many ideas. Laugh/cry. Be sure to try this green rice, my favorite mushroom casserole,  and this vegetarian take on paellaI also love cooking with quinoa, cooking with lentils, and on the citrus recipe front, don’t miss this citrus salt – it’s so much fun to play around with a range of limes, lemons, grapefruits, and tangerines! Enjoy! -h

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Garlic Lime Lettuce Wraps

Ginger and garlic tempeh rice, folded into lime-spiked lettuce wraps with lots of herbs, cucumber, and carrots. A one-pan meal that comes together in no time!

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Lettuce wraps are a fave around here (and a nice change from taco night). This has become a favorite weeknight meal. Ginger and garlic tempeh rice, folded into lime-spiked lettuce wraps with lots of herbs, cucumber, and carrots. It’s a one-pan meal that comes together in no time!

Garlic Lime Lettuce Wraps

A couple of tips related to this recipe. If you find a tempeh brand you like, buy it in multiples. It freezes really well. Also, I like to make these lettuce wraps with brown rice that I’ve blended with other grains – like a little bit of millet, and quinoa. But, brown jasmine rice on it’s own is also A+! Experiment with toppings – a sprinkling of toasted nuts, or even a dollop of guacamole is always good.

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Homemade Cavatelli

Simple, homemade cavatelli pasta is a super fun shape to make! Pictured here spiked with turmeric and black pepper, and topped with roasted winter vegetables and Parmesan.

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I spent most of the past four months in Northern California at my dad’s house. After my mom died everyone converged on the house, and in short order a lot of other things fell apart. No one went home for a long time. I made some strange decisions about what to bring when I loaded the car that initial morning – watercolors, a stack of cookbooks, my camera, a favorite knife, a huge bin full of spices. I thought about bringing my favorite donabe, but was worried it could break and grabbed my pasta machine instead. Not a bad call – a lot of pasta was made! My nephew is especially enthusiastic about it, so I decided to branch out to a new shape – cavatelli.
Homemade Cavatelli Pasta
The move to cavatelli was partially out of necessity. My workhorse, the Atlas pasta machine, has issues at my dad’s house. There is nothing to clamp it on to. Every countertop and table is too thick. It’s maddening. I noticed the clamp on the cavatelli maker seemed like it might be wider, so I thought we’d try it instead. It is also worth mentioning, I’ve been meaning to buy a cavatelli maker for years. Ragazza, a sweet little Italian spot, was just up the street from where we lived in San Francisco. The owner Sharon tipped me off to how she made their cavatelli from scratch with a little hand-cranked machine (something like this one) – and I’ve meant to get my hands on once since. This seemed like the right time.
Pasta Dough Rolled thin for Cavatelli

About this Cavatelli Recipe

After a good amount of experimenting, I’ve settled on the following as my basic cavatelli dough and technique. Once you master it, the variations you can explore are endless (see below). The cavatelli machine likes pasta dough that’s not-too-wet and not-too-dry. If you hit the sweet spot, you’ll be able to crank out a pound of cavatelli incredibly quickly. If your dough is getting stuck in your machine, pat it with flour, dust off any excess, and try again. You’ll eventually get a feel for it!
Homemade Cavatelli and Cavatelli Machine

What if I don’t have a Cavatelli Machine?

Not a big deal! You can make it by hand a number of other ways. Here’s a page that demonstrates how to shape cavatelli with a ridged board, fork, or grater. I’ve also seen it shaped traditionally in Puglia using something like a butter knife.
Close-up Photo of Cavatelli

What Flour Should I Use?

Cavatelli is traditionally made with durum wheat semolina flour. But, if you don’t have that on hand, don’t let it stop you. Last week I was out of semolina flour, so the cavatelli you see pictured here was made with “00” flour. “00” is powder-fine and made with low gluten, soft wheat flour. If you don’t have “00” you can certainly use all-purpose flour. A long way of saying, make cavatelli with 100% semolina flour if you have it, or use equal parts “00” and semolina, or just “00″….go for the all-purpose flour if that’s what you have.
Homemade Cavatelli with Roasted Winter Vegetables

How To Freeze Cavatelli

Freezing is my preferred method of storing any cavatelli I’m not cooking immediately. Arrange freshly made, uncooked cavatelli across a floured baking sheet. Try to make sure they’re in a single layer. Freeze for a couple of hours, and then transfer to double layer plastic bags. You can freeze for up to a couple of months. And you can cook straight from the freezer. No need to thaw, just dump the cavatelli into boiling salted water, and increase the cooking time a bit.
Roasted Vegetables

Cavatelli Variations

In the recipe below you can see how you can tweak basic cavatelli pasta dough by adding different seasonings and spices. I wanted to make a bright, sunny plate of pasta with lots of roasted yellow and orange vegetables and ingredients like cauliflower, golden yellow beets, and winter squash (pictured above). I added turmeric and black pepper to the pasta dough for a little flavor, color, and boost. The possibilities are endless here.
Homemade Cavatelli Pasta

You can also play around with the water. In place of water you can use vegetable juices, purees, stocks or broths, anything of that sort is fair game.Close-up Photo of Homemade Cavatelli Pasta
Making fresh pasta is one of my favorite things to do. It’s even better when you have others around to help, taking turns in shifts. I did a basic primer on making homemade pasta a while ago, if you love fettuccine noodles or anything along those lines, start there. You can also try making gnocchi (it’s perfect with this pesto), here’s a beautiful beet fettuccine, and a favorite simple tomato sauce. And all my pasta recipes live here. Enjoy!

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50 Vegan Recipes

Great vegan recipes are like gold. Especially when they feature real whole foods, and lots of plants. This type of cooking supports your health and overall well-being in important ways. No meat? No dairy? No eggs? Don’t sweat it. There are many other ingredients to get excited about.

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Great vegan recipes are like gold. Especially when they feature whole foods, and lots of plants. This type of cooking supports your health and overall well-being in important ways. No meat? No dairy? No eggs? Don’t sweat it. There are many other ingredients to get excited about when you’re cooking and eating.

Mains

  1. Caramelized Tofu

    Caramelized strips of tofu served over sautéed shredded brussels sprouts. Caramelized Tofu

  2. Sunshine Pad Thai

    One simple trick makes this a turmeric noodle version of a classic. Vegan Pad Thai

  3. Last Minute Red Lasagna

    This is a true weeknight lasagna. No pre-cooking sauces, no pre-cooking noodles. Last Minute Red Lasagna

  4. Quick Vegan Enchiladas

    In the oven in less that ten minutes, and a healthful alternative to all the heavy cheese versions out there. With black beans, sweet potatoes, and a stealthy turmeric boost. Vegan Enchiladas

  5. Sushi Bowl

    a de-constructed sushi roll – brown rice, tofu, avocado, toasted nori and green onions served with a tangy, sweet citrus-soy dressing. Sushi Bowl

  6. Rice Porridge

    It’s a one pot, effortless, green, nutrient-packed twist on one of my favorite things to eat. Rice Porridge

  7. Chia Breakfast Bowl

    Chia Breakfast Bowl

  8. Vegetarian Paella

    Vegetarian Paella

  9. Steaming Vegetables

    Steaming Vegetables

  10. Green Falafel Bowl

    Green Falafel Bowl

  11. Ottolenghi Red Rice and Quinoa

  12. TLT Sandwich

  13. Pan-glazed Tempeh

  14. Weeknight Ponzu Pasta

  15. Soups

  16. Vegetable Noodle Soup

    Vegetable noodle soup is as simple, direct, and delicious as it gets. If you’re vegetarian or vegan looking for an alternative to chicken noodle soup, try this! Vegetable Noodle Soup

  17. Broccoli Cheddar Soup

    A simple, everyday broccoli soup made special with crusty, mustardy croutons and cheddar cheese. Broccoli Cheddar Soup

  18. Immunity Soup

    White pepper with jolts of ginger, and stabs of garlic – clear and strong topped with tofu, mushrooms, watermelon radish, and lots of green onions. Immunity Soup

  19. Simple Asparagus Soup

    A simple asparagus soup – fresh asparagus, new potatoes, a bit of green curry paste, and coconut milk are pureed to make this spring favorite. Simple Asparagus Soup

  20. Simple Cauliflower Soup

    This is the simplest cauliflower soup. Simple Cauliflower Soup

  21. Ribollita

    Ribollita is a thick Tuscan stew – dark greens, lots of beans, vegetables, olive oil, thickened with day-old bread. Ribollita

  22. Green Pea Soup

  23. Miso Tahini Soup

  24. Posole in Broth

  25. Leek Soup with Dill Oil

  26. Salads

  27. Taco Salad

    Tempeh taco salad – crushed tortilla chips bring the crunch, black beans and crumbled tempeh coated with taco seasoning brings the substance, and a strong, smoked paprika-apple cider dressing pulls everything together. Taco Salad<

  28. Rainbow Noodle Salad

    A radiant, color-flecked tangle of noodles, cabbage, shredded carrots, pickled sushi ginger, and an abundance of cilantro, basil, and scallions. Rainbow Noodle Salad

  29. Easy Tomato Pasta Salad

    Whole-grain pasta, baby kale, basil, and the best tomatoes you can get your hands on, with a generous drizzle of strong harissa dressing. Easy Tomato Pasta Salad

  30. Grilled Zucchini Bread Salad

  31. Smash-and-Toss Roasted Potato Salad

  32. Lazy Day Peanut Noodle Salad

  33. Summer Corn Salad

  34. Dips, Snacks and Appetizers

  35. Goth Hummus

    Goth Hummus

  36. Golden Beet Hummus

    Billowy and smooth, it’s a boosted hummus for everyday, all-day w/ golden beets, turmeric, and chickpeas. Golden Beet Hummus

  37. Turmeric Cashews

    Turmeric Cashews tossed with cayenne, nori, and sesame.

  38. Asparagus Tartine

    Avocado smeared across toasted day-old slabs of sesame bread, layered with arugula and garlicky caraway asparagus + toasted pepitas. Asparagus Tartine

  39. Roasted Tomato Salsa

    Deep, caramelized flavors of roasted tomatoes and onions alongside the smokiness of the chipotles equals the best salsa. Salsa

  40. Vegan Nachos

    Packed with beneficial spices, cashews, garlic, and grated sweet potatoes, and lasts up to a week refrigerated. Vegan Nachos

  41. Power Bars

    Savory power bars with toasted walnuts, crumbled kale chips, and oil-cured olives. Power Bars

  42. Muhammara

    Traditional red pepper spread originating from Syria made with a fascinating blend of red peppers, walnuts, olive oil, pomegranate molasses. Muhammara

  43. Mung Bean Hummus

    For creamy hummus, without the extra effort, I use mung beans instead. They work beautifully. Top the hummus with shallot oil, fresh chives Mung Bean Hummus

  44. Spicy Boosted Nut Butter

  45. Walnut Olive Miso Magic Sauce

  46. Cinnamon Vanilla Sunflower Butter

  47. Roasted Lemon Chutney

  48. Drinks and Desserts

  49. Rhubarb Rosewater Syrup

    Perfect on (or in) everything from yogurt, spritzers, waffles, or oatmeal. Rhubarb Rosewater Syrup

  50. Lime, Grapefruit and Ginger Juice

    Lime, Grapefruit and Ginger Juice

  51. Vitamin C Tea Blend

    Hibiscus and rose hips are both Vitamin C power houses. This is a much appreciated tea blend for when an immunity boost is needed. Vitamin C Tea Blend

  52. Homemade Strawberry Almond Milk

    Once you’ve tasted homemade almond milk it’s quite difficult to return to store-bought. Homemade Strawberry Almond Milk

  53. No Bake Energy Bites

    No-bake energy bites, my favorite alternative to energy bars. No Bake Energy Bites

  54. Two-ingredient Candied Citrus Lolipops

    Plump, juicy, citrus segments coated in thin, crunchy, sugar shells. Two-ingredient Candied Citrus Lolipops

My hope is you’ll find many ideas here to inspire more vegan meals in your home and life. The recipes listed here are vegan, or easily made vegan (with a minor tweak or two). I only list them here if I’ve actually mentioned how to make the recipe vegan in the recipe or in the head notes of the recipe. Here’s a favorite vegan recipe to start!

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Grillable Tofu Burgers

Seasoned with a good amount of cumin, cayenne and mustard, these are hearty, filling, easy to make, dump-everything-in-the-food processor grillable tofu burgers.

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Wayne calls this the “1996 Veggie Burger.” It’s basically an old-school hippie burger. I love them for a few reasons. First, they’re grill-able. Second, they’re made from ingredients I understand – organic tofu, seeds, nuts, eggs, spices, and breadcrumbs. And third, they’re endlessly adaptable by switching up the spices & your burger toppings.
A Grillable Tofu Burger Recipe

The Recipe

On the cooking front, I’ve been cleaning out some drawers. Primarily going through old magazine clippings (which is part of the reason I’ve been featuring more magazine inspired recipes than usual). I’ve been finding lots of gems, and these tofu burgers jumped out at me. I’ve adapted them from a reader contributed recipe that ran in the October 2004 issue of Sunset Magazine. The recipe was sent to Sunset by Jeremy Wolf of San Francisco, and I enjoyed them so much! They were impossibly easy to make, relying on the “throw everything in the food processor” technique, and called for a quirky mix of ingredients ranging from tofu, seeds, and nuts, to mustard, cumin, and mushrooms. In the years since, I’ve done a lot of variations, and I’ll talk through a few of them below.

I will say, I suspect you’ll be tempted to tweak the seasonings, and you should! But here’s my advice. Don’t skimp on the cumin or mustard, you need some assertive flavors to kick in – keep in mind you’re dealing with ground tofu and eggs as a burger base. Whatever you do think bold!

Ingredients in Food Processor for Tofu Burgers

Tofu Burgers – How To Cook Them

One of the great things about these is you can cook them a number of ways. You can use a skillet, you can grill them, or you can bake them. The main thing you need to do is blend the mixture to a smooth-ish consistency. Then firmly shape and press the mixture into firm patties. I call for the firmest tofu you can find (extra-firm), but each tofu brand has a different quantity of water in it. If your mixture is too wet, simply blend in more breadcrumbs 1/4 cup at a time, and go from there. The mixture also firms up as it sits, so keep that in mind. You can let it rest for 10 minutes or so before shaping if you have the time.
A Grillable Tofu Burger Recipe

Tofu Burger Variations

A number of people have attempted to make these without the egg. I haven’t tested that version yet, but here’s are a few notes from the comments. From Lisa,”For the vegan, I reserved part of the batch before adding eggs, and put in a tablespoon of almond butter as a binder, plus a little extra breadcrumbs.” Jacqui says,”…although I was out of eggs, so I used 2 T of chia seeds mixed with 6 T of water as a replacement. Worked great!”

For a gluten-free option Lisa commented with this brilliance, “I make something similar to these and use masa harina instead of breadcrumbs for a gluten-free option… it definitely gives it a “southwestern” twist, and is SO delicious.”

Cooking Tips

If you’re nervous about the patties falling through grill grates, Judith says,”…my husband was in charge of the grill, started out on aluminum foil, we thought they might fall through the grates, he ended up putting them right on the grates (they firmed up while cooking on the foil for a bit) and they were wonderful!”

Enjoy!!

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