Whole Garden Gnocchi


Who knew I could feed myself from a front yard garden alone? Other than the flour, I grew everything for this dish in my small, urban yard; potatoes, garlic, chard, tomatoes and squash.

I may have mentioned my front yard transformation last spring. With the help of a great neighbour, a dumping of dirt, a seed catalogue and some eager kids, we transferred lawn into an edible space.

Less the brussels sprouts and the chard, most of the garden now harvested. There were the three varieties of potatoes; Peruvian Reds, Blue and Russian Fingerlings, Rainbow Swiss Chard, Butternut Squash, sweet Yellow Pear Tomatoes just for this dish alone. (It doesn’t even hint at the edamame, peas, beans, beets, asparagus, blueberries, herbs, okra, cabbages, zucchini, pumpkins… corn… wow!)

After digging up a surplus of potatoes, I needed a few ideas on what to do with them. With BBQ season pretty much a thing of the past, potato salad wasn’t topping my list as much as the gnocchi. Besides, I just had to when I saw the light pinkiness of the potatoes and the great texture that was perfect for such a thing.

Feeding yourself all on your own, that’s local.
Now, that’s something to be thankful for!

PERUVIAN PINK POTATO GNOCCHI

1Lb Potatoes, peeled, boiled and mashed (you can use other starchy potatoes, like Russetts as well)
1 Cup All Purpose Flour, plus more for rolling.
1/4 teaspoon Salt

In a large bowl, finely mash the cooked potatoes so they are lump free.
Add the salt and half of the flour then add 1/4 cup at a time stirring to combine and bring everything together in a smooth dough. You may not need it all.
Depending on your work surface, third or quarter the dough. Take one piece and cover remaining pieces.
Roll the dough into long “snakes” and cut into 1″ pieces.
Roll each piece off the back of a floured fork and repeat finishing all of the dough.
Drop into salted boiling water and cook gnocchi until they float; about 3 – 4 minutes.

While the gnocchi were boiling I made the “sauce” of tomatoes, chard, squash and garlic.
I cubed the peeled, cleaned squash and sautéed it, covered in a large, lightly oiled pan. Once the pieces began to soften, I removed the lid to let the stem escape and pieces brown.
I added two cloves of finely chopped garlic and the chard to cook for another two minutes.
Once the chard had wilted, I added 1 cup of sliced yellow pear tomatoes, salt, pepper and a palmful of chopped basil.
Simple and delicious.

Little House On The Prairie.


Posting a school snack might be cutting it close but we began running out of the packable snacks. With a mere three days of school remaining for us, I was not about to run out and restock with packages, so I decided to make my own. Now of course I was prepared to catch flack for this. Since making bread at 1am the other day, (we were out & I knew I’d be too lazy to go to the store) I heard this: “We don’t live on the Little House On The Prairie, you know? Stores where they have jam, butter and bread are some of the many modern conveniences of the 21st century.”

And that’s from my husband. Cute.

My daughter has someone with a peanut allergy in her class, so keeping that in mind I had to get these to stick together with out anything nutty. The second strategy was actually getting the kid to eat them, so I tried to replicate the “original” that she’s used to; chewy, with chocolate and rice crisps.

Third, get them by her little brother and into the snack bag for school.

Wha? Thought I wasn’t looking because I had a camera over my eye, didn’t you? Caught ya.

I’ll warn you, these are sweet, but the kids, they li -iiike them!

NUT-FREE CHEWY GRANOLA BARS

2 Cups Old Fashioned Oatmeal
1 Cup Rice Krispies
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 Cup Unsweetened Shredded Coconut
1/2 Cup Safflower Oil
1/2 Cup Agave Nectar
1/4 Cup Brown Rice Syrup
1/4 Cup Brown Sugar
1/2 Cup Dried Cranberries, or cherries or cherry flavoured cranberries
1/3 Cup Chocolate Chips

Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
Spray a 9″ x 12″ Pyrex baking dish with oil.
Combine the oatmeal, Rice Krispies, coconut, cranberries and salt in a large mixing bowl.
Heat the agave, rice syrup, brown sugar and oil in a small saucepan until it just begins to boil.
Pour over the waiting oat mixture and mix well to coat.
Stir in chocolate chips last, so they won’t melt.
With clean, greased hands, press the mixture into the prepared pan.
Bake for 15 minutes.
Remove from the oven to cool slightly. Cut into bars while still warm
Cool completely before individually wrapping.

Makes 12 bars.

Vegan Oatmeal Cookies


Ever just need a cookie? The perfect sweet treat or quick snack is here and it’s almost healthy! Oatmeal wins again!

oatmealcookie

VEGAN OATMEAL COOKIES

1/2 Cup Unbleached All Purpose Flour
1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
1/4 Cup Coconut Oil
3/4 Cup Turbinado Sugar
2 Tablespoons Molasses
1 Ripe Banana, mashed
1/4 teaspoon Sea Salt
2 Cups Whole Oats (not quick)
1 teaspoon Cinnamon (if you’re adding dried fruit, not chocolate)
1/2 Cup Dried Apricots, finely chopped or Raisins (optional)
1/2 Cup Semi-sweet Chocolate Chips (also optional, but delicious)
Maldon Salt, for finishing

Preheat the oven to 350ºF and prepare a baking sheet lined with parchment paper
Melt the coconut oil and add it to a large bowl along with the sugar, mashed banana and salt. Mix well to cream and dissolve sugar. Add the molasses and the cinnamon/dried fruit, if using.
Fold in the oats, flour, baking soda and baking powder, mixing just to combine and dampen the oats. Stir in the chocolate chips, if using.
Drop the cookie dough by the heaping tablespoon onto the prepared baking sheet with a cookie width space between each dollop, as they will spread slightly.
Bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden around the edges.
Cool slightly on baking sheet, then transfer to a rack to cool completely.