With my attempt to eat a tad bit healthier lately I’ve been showing my copy of Appetite for Reduction a lot of affection, so much so that the cover actually fell off, now that’s the sign of a well loved cookbook! Every time I flick through that book it seems like new recipes pop up that I never noticed before, that mixed with recipe testing and this girl has been enjoying some quality eats. Although it felt like it took forever considering the shit tonne of rain we’ve gotten the last few weeks, summer is finally here! The second the temperatures went up a little, I started avoiding soups and stews like the plague, it’s not like I’ve given up eating hot or hearty meals altogether but there’s just something wrong to me about eating hot soups in the summertime. There’s just so much more variety available now that I couldn’t bring myself to throw it all in a pot and boil it down, I want to enjoy that stuff for what it is. Every time I go to the grocery store I happily frolic* through the produce section and grab all the bright leafy greens and craploads of fruit I can get my hands on, seriously, we buy a lot, it’s like the stuff is getting frisky in our fridge and reproducing overnight. So needless to say, I’ve pretty much been gorging myself silly on strawberries, blueberries, cherries and cantaloupe, I need to get my fill before everything goes out of season again. Although I don’t eat them as frequently as I should, I’m a big advocator of salads, and no I’m not talking about those half-assed, sad attempts they try to pass off as a meal at restaurants, you know what I’m talking about, they throw some iceburg lettuce and a couple dried cranberries on a plate and call it a salad, pfft, bitch please. I’m talking about the hugejass salads that are filled with layers upon layers of different veggies, proteins and grains. Example A: The Sanctuary Chef Salad.
This salad is so worth the extra bit of effort it takes to make all the separate components. Herb roasted cauliflower, basic baked tofu, coconut bacon (the recipe calls for eggplant bacon but I had some leftovers on hand), a bunch of veggies and some yummy sanctuary dressing to coat everything in. The sanctuary dressing is a spin-off of ranch dressing (sanctuary’s being much nicer places for cows :)) and is tofu based, I’m usually pretty sceptical about tofu based anything since I find that no matter what you add to it there always seems to be a tofu-y aftertaste. Little did I know that there’s a genius way to get rid of this little bit of nastiness, you just boil it for a couple minutes! Simple as that, thanks for the tip Isa. Once I had boiled my tofu and let it cool for a moment I blended it along with all the other ingredients and turned it into a thick, creamy, flavourful dressing. It was a little pungent but super tasty, I’ll just make sure I don’t come within 3 feet of anyone’s nose if I plan on eating it. This is seriously one kick-bum salad! The herbed cauliflower has so much flavour, I didn’t think is was possible for cauliflower to taste that good. The baked tofu isn’t a must have but it really added to the salad and made it a super filling meal. All the flavour combinations and different vegetables went really well together, just sitting here writing this all out is making me crave it again; me craving salad, huh, who knew that could happen.
Keeping the salad theme going, I tried out the Baked Falafel. I love falafel, so much so that if I could eat at Falafel King everyday, I would be very happy gal. As much as I love it, for some reason I rarely make it at home, this probable has more to do with my lack of a deep fryer and the scary thought of a big, hot vat of oil sitting on my stovetop then anything else. Now baked falafel, that’s something I can handle. Not only is it waaaaay lower in fat then its traditional counterpart, it’s really easy to whip together on a weeknight. When it comes to making baked falafel it really helps to keep in mind that the texture is obviously not going to be much like the deep-fried variety, but that doesn’t mean that you have to sacrifice any flavour. They look a little dry when you take them out of the oven, but trust me, they’re not; these little balls of chickpeas are spicy and light, with a soft texture, leave them in the fridge overnight and they only get better, you can’t say that about anything deep fried. I turned my dinner into a deconstructed falafel salad of sorts, with lettuce, cucumber, tomato, pickled cabbage, pickles and a quick tahini sauce, yum!
*Ok, I don’t exactly frolic, I’m not a TOTAL crazy person