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thai

Soba Noodles with Carrot-Cabbage Slaw and Peanut Sauce

Soba Noodles with Carrot-Cabbage Slaw and Peanut Sauce

I eat much peanut butter almost every morning. On oatmeal days, at least two tablespoons are swirled into my bowl, and sometimes more.

Unfortunately, this means that it’s a rare occasion that peanut butter gets incorporated into other meals. But those occasions are always cherished.

There are plenty of reasons to add peanut butter to lunch and dinner.

Peanut Sauce

One of my favorite savory forums for the ingredient is a gingery, garlicky peanut sauce. If you have a food processor, its assembly is almost as easy as spooning peanut butter onto a banana.

Soba Noodles with Carrot-Cabbage Slaw and Peanut Sauce

Once you make the sauce, you’ll find that the remainder of this recipe is even simpler. If you’re looking for more, add some steamed edamame or tofu sautéed in soy sauce.

Topping choices can also get creative. Scallions, chopped peanuts or cashews, extra cilantro, and a squeeze of lime are all favorites. And I do love a squeeze of Sriracha, too.

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Green Beans with Coconut Curry Peanut Sauce

 Green Beans with Coconut Thai Curry Peanut Sauce

Thai coconut curry forever remains one of my mealtime mainstays.

On my stove at least twice a month, it’s one of the simplest and tastiest ways to load up on broccoli, bok choy, mushrooms, and other garden goodness.

But for this particular rendition, I chose to focus on one ingredient — green beans, a veggie that rarely lets me down.

Green Beans with Coconut Thai Curry Peanut Sauce

The sauce here is thin enough that you could serve this over rice. To make it a full meal, fry up some tofu to toss on the side.

But it’s truly a delicious side all on its own. You can spoon up all that sauce, no rice needed. And if you have any extra, use it as a dip for steamed broccoli or to top soba or rice noodles.

Thai Curry Peanut Sauce

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Vegetarian Pad Thai with Zucchini Noodles

Vegetarian Pad Thai with Zucchini Noodles

Hey there. It’s been awhile.

Since my last post, the sunset has shifted. The weather began following suit. And the official mark of spring stands just a handful of days away. (!!!)

I am feeling good about what’s to come.

Vegetarian Pad Thai with Zucchini Noodles

In these last weeks of winter that have been rolling on by, I’ve been working on my first photo assignment for a cookbook. The experience has been fun. Full of learning. And food. And photos and taste-testing and excitement…all of which have pushed my own blog a little to the wayside.

However, last week wrapped the final day of shooting, and so now I return. To my own cooking, and my own blog, and my own urges for warm-weathered recipes, even if they’ve arrived just a tad too early.

It’s still winter jacket weather here in Philly…hence why these zucchini noodles got a quick saute on the stove. I may be ready for spring, but I’m not quite ready for raw zucchini noodles. You can go that route if you choose. Although, I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it.

Peanuts

Here, zucchini and/or summer squash replace the noodles in traditional Pad Thai for a lighter version full of bright, spring vibes. The quick cook-time they get in the skillet draws out their flavor, and softens them up just a bit before they get paired with crunchy red cabbage, and an array of other flavorful accompaniments.

That’s one thing in which this Pad Thai does not fall short – flavor. Feel free to add a little Sriracha to play up its spice, and use a combination of nuts, like peanuts and cashews, if you so choose. Tofu could be a nice addition as well.

Cheers to ringing in the new season with a bowl full of color – you with me?!

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Peanut Turmeric Rice Bowls with Edamame

Edamame

I go through a lot of ingredient phases. Last month it was tahini. (Although, that phase never really ends). This month, it’s turmeric. Turmeric’s  going into my morning smoothies, my lunchtime collard wraps, my afternoon tea, my salad dressings, my dinnertime peanut sauces, etc. It’s a turmeric takeover, and my orange-stained cutting boards are hating me for it. Good thing the love from my body makes up for that, and that’s what really counts, right?

Peanut Turmeric Rice Bowls with Edamame

It took me awhile to get the turmeric bug. I grew up on the spice, but was never really fond of it. In fact, once I was old enough to recognize its flavor, there were multiple occasions where I’d beg my mom not to put it in the dishes she would make. I thought it was bitter, and ruined everything it touched. So, like the teenage version of a little kid pulling at their parent’s pant leg, my easily irritable self would sit at the dinner table, and go, “UGH, MOM, turmeric again? Did you have to? What were you thinking?” I was annoying. And I know it even more so now that I’ve fallen into a deep love with the spice, one I once held as my enemy. Sorry mom. You were right. Turmeric is awesome. And I know what you were thinking.

Compliment it with a little salt and a fat, such as olive oil, or in this recipe, peanut butter/sesame oil, and its bitterness turns into a toastiness so pungent and aromatic, it’s hard not to be won over. (Although, be prepared to employ some repetition in introducing little kid taste buds to it. It’ll never become an overly sweet spice, like cinnamon.)

Edamamae

Now, without even thinking, turmeric automatically gets thrown into everything. Although, rarely is it intentional, and naturally such is the case here. Just like with my morning smoothies and my blender, as the food processor was whizzing for this peanut sauce, the turmeric jar caught my eye. Then came the uncontrollable impulse to throw two teaspoons into its ingredient whirl. Within minutes, my originally calculated dinner took off with a whole new personality. Kitchen spontaneity, at its best. Again, turmeric is showing me it can do no wrong. I like a meal with a little attitude, and that’s exactly what it brought to this.

And now that I’ve gushed about turmeric for far too many WordPress lines…can we talk about the natural beauty of edamame?! In reality, they should’ve really been the primary focus of this blog post. After all, they were the inspiration for this meal. Crunchy, and packed with protein, the green pods make a nice addition to grains, and allow for a pleasant change of pace from beans, my typical sidekick to rice. After you add in the turmeric and pile on some kale, you’re left with an incredibly flavorful and nutrient-packed meal. As with turmeric, those kind of meals will never do you wrong.

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Coconut Curry Cabbage Stir-Fry with Pasta

Coconut Curry Cabbage Stir-Fry with Pasta

Sometimes I get the weirdest cravings. Like for iced coffee in the middle of a February snowstorm. Or for bubble baths (likely a result of said iced coffee). Or for cabbage, a vegetable I think of little outside of those lone, random lustings.

Generally, cabbage comes into my mind mainly in the summer, when its heads are running rampant in the garden. It comes to mind when I’m dining outside, veg. or fish tacos in hand, and a few shreds of crunch lace the top. I can get down with some cole slaw, too, but I can’t say I’m dreaming of it all year. It’s definitely not something I seek out. (This recipe excluded.)

Cabbage, however, seized my mind this past cold, wintry week. (Along with thoughts of California. And beaches. And everything else warm-related, to the extent I started writing about it in my music journalism…)

Cabbage

As per usual, while working at a coffee shop shifted to daydreaming of dinner at a coffee shop, as per not usual, my mind drifted to cabbage. And so was born this recipe.

Cowabunga.

Coconut Curry Cabbage Stir-Fry with Pasta

Coconut curry’s something I daydream of on the regular, so no surprises here. It gives this pasta a vegan sauciness that feels creamy but not overly rich. It pairs perfectly with the crunch from the cabbage, and the peanuts thrown on top. Feel free to swirl in a little peanut butter if you do want to take it to the richer side, or if you simply don’t have any peanuts on hand. Just don’t skip out on the nutty element all together.

A little cabbage, yes cabbage, to brighten up a winter day. Who would’ve dreamed? Me.

Green cabbage

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