Tag Archives: avocado

Avocado, toasted walnut, smoked tofu, arugula and beet Carpaccio sandwich on Sourdough topped with lemon garlic olive oil

beet, arugula, smoked tofu, walnut, and avocado sandwich with potato salad

Beets are a simple, delicious, and nutritious food, but after hearing the comments on this beet sandwich I realized that not many people know how to prepare beets the way I do. It’s really easy! Beets are not that intimidating. People think it is difficult to pair things with beets (Malloreigh doubted that this sandwich would be good, but it was in fact very delicious) but this was a really fantastic combination.

Beet Carpaccio

A “carpaccio” is officially thinly sliced raw beef or fish, but it’s just too good of a term for thinly sliced beets. It’s not really a carpaccio but we’ll call it that anyway.

Don’t peel the beets before you boil them – leaving the skin on helps to seal in the nutrients, which would otherwise be partially lost through boiling. If you’re using both red and golden beets, boil them separately to maintain the colour. As you may know, red beet juice will stain anything and everything it touches bright pink.

Separate the beets from the beet greens. Boil them whole in a pot filled with water over medium-high heat until a fork can easily pierce them – about 30 to 45 minutes, maybe longer.

Once the beets are boiled, let them cool – drain them into a colander and run cold water over them to speed this process. The skin should slough off easily, but if it doesn’t, use a paring knife or sharp vegetable peeler.

Now, your beets are ready to slice. Use a mandolin slicer to slice them thinly or use a sharp non-serrated knife.

Sliced beets will keep in the fridge for at least a week if you put them in a resealable container, but they are also pretty easy to eat in one sitting.

Beet Carpaccio Sandwich

This beet sandwich was simple and delicious. Sliced avocado, lightly toasted whole organic walnuts, thinly sliced smoked tofu, fresh arugula, and sliced beets were dashed with fresh ground pepper. The sourdough bread I used was drizzled with lemon and garlic infused olive oil. It was served with a side of potato salad.

In The Absence of Tortillas, a Mexican Bowl

in the absence of tortillas, a mexican bowl

Who wants tortillas from a grocery store anyways? I find the politically correct mexican bowl to be one of my favourite dishes because it’s fast, flavourful, easy and reminds me of my mom.

This particular bowl consisted of:

Chipotlé lime baked tofu cubes
Roasted garlic potatoes
Pinto beans
Garnished with fresh tomato, lettuce, salsa, avocado and roasted zucchini.

You could replace the potatoes with rice or spanish rice, sautéed vegetables for tofu and black beans for pinto beans.

Try replacing salsa with a tomatillo sauce  or try adding guacamole.

chipotlé lime tofu

1/2 block extra firm tofu
Juice of 1/2 lime (about 1 tbsp)
1 tsp lime zest
1 small can of chipotlé in adobo sauce or  1 tsp chipotlé seasoning
1 tsp garlic salt
1/4 small yellow onion minced
1 tbs oil

Cut tofu into 1cm cubes and place into a medium sized bowl. If using canned chipotlé use one pepper and mince put into bowl with tofu along with all of the other ingredients. Let the tofu marinate for at least fifteen minutes and place in oven at 400 degrees for fifteen minutes. This recipe is spicy!

Balsamic-Mustard-Garlic-Maple Syrup Salad Dressing

summer greens

As our Melbournian friend Laura would say: Look, this is my go-to salad dressing for dressing up simple greens, alright?

Salad Dressing in Vinaigrette Style

1 clove garlic, minced or pressed
1.5 tbsp olive oil (or another light veg oil, like grapeseed or avocado – NOT canola or safflower)
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp mustard (I prefer a creamy dijon; use anything but plain yellow)
1 tbsp maple syrup, agave nectar, or other liquid sweetener
1/8 tsp salt & pepper

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl. Taste it and adjust accordingly – want it sweeter? Add more sweetener. Too much oil? Add more vinegar. This recipe should easily make enough salad dressing for a big bowl of salad. It’ll keep indefinitely (thanks to the vinegar). Make sure to shake or stir before dressing your salad, to ensure your oil and liquids haven’t separated.

Most vinaigrette recipes use far more oil than vinegar. I usually do it the opposite way. Since balsamic is a thick and sweet vinegar, you can be a lot more liberal with it. Still, this is a very vinegary dressing. If you prefer your salad dressing a little less strongly flavoured, maybe try one tablespoon of balsamic rather than two, and adjust from there.

Salad Dressing in Creamy Style

You’re going to have to make a bigger recipe if you want to make a creamy dressing, but perhaps you can put it in a leftover bottle and keep it in the fridge. You’ll need a food processor. Depending on how big your food processor is, you may have to quadruple the recipe or more. You need to fill the processor to at least a couple centimeters so it will adequately spin.

Put all ingredients except for the oil in your food processor. Put the top on and start to spin it at high speed. Using the pouring spout, very slowly pour the oil in as the salad dressing spins. As the oil is incorporated, the dressing should become creamy and beautiful.

You could try doing this with a fork, if you are really ambitious.

Variations on a Theme

  • Add orange juice and leave out mustard for an orange-balsamic dressing.
  • Add fresh or defrosted raspberries to your orange dressing.
  • Leave out garlic for a sweeter dressing.
  • Leave out sweetener for a tangy dressing.

Now what?

Just in case you have trouble thinking up excellent salad combinations:

Delicious Salad Construction

Per person, prepare:
Handful spring greens, rinsed
4 cherry tomatoes, sliced down the centre
1/4 avocado, skin and pit removed, sliced
1/4 mandarin orange, sectioned; or 1/4 mango, cubed
1/4 cup cucumber, chopped
Sprinkling nuts, seeds, and dried fruit – I usually lightly toast some trail mix

Or try:
Handful spinach, stems removed, rinsed
Handful raspberries or sliced strawberries
1/4 cup smoked tofu, grated
Sprinkling poppy seeds or toasted chopped walnuts

Avocado and Sundried Tomato Raviolini

I wish I had a photo for this, but damn damn double-damn, I don’t. I made this for a vegan cookoff in March or April. The cookoff was avocado themed, and I actually ended up winning with this dish (tying with Corinna’s avocado noodle). Here, however, is the recipe. It’s incredibly simple and incredibly delicious.

Avocado Raviolini

1 medium to large avocado (or 2 small avocados), with pit and skin discarded
3 hydrated sundried tomatoes, minced
1 clove garlic, minced or pressed
1/2 lemon, juiced or 1 tbsp lemon juice
Salt & pepper

Mash all of these ingredients together in a small bowl. Cover and freeze.

1 package won-ton or spring roll wrappers

Look at the ingredients as some contain egg. I bought the larger spring roll wrappers and cut them into rectangles. You could also make fresh pasta dough from scratch if you wanted to be really ambitious. You can often find these wrappers in the frozen section and/or the Asian import section of a grocery store. Alternately, you could use phyllo pastry, though in that case I am not sure how you’d best cook the ravioli afterward – perhaps by baking it?

Prepare the wrappers by cutting them into square or rectangular shapes. Keep in mind that you will be stuffing these and folding them over. I like a rectangle shape that I then fold in half. The size and shape is up to you.

Once your avocado mixture is frozen – give it an hour if you can – you’ll want to prepare a paste for closing the ravioli up.

3 tbsp flour
3 tbsp water

Mix these together in a small bowl. You may need to prepare more of the paste later.

Make yourself a rolling/stuffing/filling station with a lightly floured surface, your bowl of paste, a fork, your wrappers, and your frozen avocado mixture. You will also want a receptacle for the filled ravioli, like a baking sheet or plate. Spoon 1 tsp of avocado mixture on to a wrapper, apply paste along the edges with your fingertip, fold the wrapper over, and crimp it closed with the fork ON BOTH SIDES. Set aside, and repeat until all of your wrappers and avocado are gone.

You may need to use less or more than 1 tsp avocado for each ravioli depending on the size of your wrappers. If you overfill them, they are more likely to break when cooking.

Cooking the ravioli

You have two choices here. When I prepared these for cookoff, I flash-fried them and then drained them with paper towel. However, another method that I think could work really well is this.

Lay a piece of wax or parchment paper on a baking sheet. Cover it with a single layer of ravioli; try to keep them from touching each other. If you have more ravioli than that, make another layer, with a piece of wax or parchment paper. Top with a final piece of wax or parchment paper.

Freeze the ravioli for at least an hour. Now, you can cook them by dropping them into a pot of water that’s already at a rolling boil for a minute or two, OR you can fry them, OR you can bake them (a hot oven for a short period of time).

The key is that you don’t want the avocado to overcook. In fact, when I prepared my dish I froze the avocado so it would stay no more than room-temperature while the wrappers cooked.

I served this with a sundried tomato cream sauce.

Black bean mexican polenta topped with tomatillo sauce & roasted corn, pineapple and avocado salad accompanied with roasted cauliflower with a red chile glaze

black bean polenta with corn, fresh tomatillo sauce, roasted cauliflower, and mango pineapple roasted tomato avocado salsa

The many components to this recipe may seem daunting, but are simple and make this dish flavorful and super fresh or as I like to say, supa fresh. Continue reading