Garlicky Scape Kale Walnut Pesto - Oh So Vegan !

Garlicky Scape  Kale Walnut Pesto - Oh So Vegan !
Try this easy to make vegan pesto ! Made with garlic scapes and kale. Yes you read that right ! There is kale in this pesto ! Give it try and tell us what you think ! 

Prep Time : 10 minutes
Cook time : 10 minutes
Total time : 20 minutes

Yields 2 cups. 

1 bunch of curly kale ( I ended using all of the kale I bought )
1 bunch of garlic scapes roughly chopped ( be sure to cut off the dead ends )
1 1/2 cups roasted walnuts
1 lemon juiced
1/2 tsp salt or to taste ( I used Himalayan salt ) 
2 tbsp nutritional yeast ( I added more as it gives the 'cheesy' flavor to the pesto ) 
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1. Bring a pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Stir in the chopped kale and cook for approximately 4 minutes, or until the kale has softened and turned bright green.
2. Add the chopped garlic scapes to a food processor , and pulse until finely chopped. Add the roasted walnuts and continue to pulse until no large pieces of walnuts remain.
3. Add the lemon juice, blanched kale, nutritional yeast, and Himalayan salt, and continue to pulse until the kale is finely chopped.
4. Scrape down the sides of the food processor and gently stir the mixture as needed until chopped. 
5. Add the olive oil and blend.

Add more olive oil if you like your pesto a little more moist. 

Chickpeas On Toast

Chickpeas On Toast

Serves: 4

Prep: 5 mins

Cook: 20 mins

  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 2 shallots, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ tsp. smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp. sweet paprika
  • ½ tsp. brown sugar
  • 1 can (14oz./400g) chopped tomatoes
  • 1 can (14oz./400g) chickpeas, drained
  • 4 slices bread, toasted
  • handful parsley, to garnish
  • ⅓ cup (60g) olives, halved, to garnish

Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat on a medium pan. Add shallots and cook for 2-3 minutes, then add garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes. 


Add all the spices to the pan and mix well. Next add in the chopped tomatoes and 2 tbsp. of water. Simmer on low-medium heat until the sauce has reduced, around 10 minutes.


Mix in the drained chickpeas, season with salt, sugar and black pepper and cook for another 5 minutes until warmed through.


Serve on the toasted bread with parsley and black olives.

Sparkling Blueberry Maple Lemonade

Sparkling Blueberry Maple Lemonade

Just a hint of real maple syrup is used in the simple syrup for this recipe. This adds a hint of rich maple goodness, without overpowering the other flavors.  

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes
 Serves: 4


1 c. fresh or frozen blueberries
3 T. fresh mint, crushed
1-2 T. real maple syrup
3 T. honey, preferably local
3 c. water, divided
½ c. fresh lemon juice
1 c. club soda
Ice cubes, to serve

Optional Garnish:
Mint sprigs
Fresh blueberries
Lemon wedges


  1. To prepare the blueberry maple simple syrup, combine the blueberries, mint, maple syrup, honey, and one quarter cup water in a small saucepan set over medium heat.
  2. Simmer until the mixture is heated through and starts to thicken, approximately 4-5 minutes. As the mixture simmers, gently press the blueberries with a wooden spoon to release juices while stirring to combine with the other ingredients.
  3. Remove from heat and pour through a fine mesh strainer to separate the solids. Reserve remaining liquid syrup and set aside to cool.  
  4. Add lemon juice and remaining water to a large pitcher. Add blueberry maple simple syrup, to taste, and stir to combine.
  5. Fill 4 glasses with ice and fill each 2/3 full with the blueberry lemonade mixture. Top off each glass with some club soda and garnish with sprigs of fresh mint, blueberries, and/or lemon wedges, if desired. Enjoy! 

Peach Blackberry Salad with Blackberry-Basil Vinaigrette

Peach Blackberry Salad with Blackberry-Basil Vinaigrette

For best results, prepare the vinaigrette the day before serving to give the flavors time to fully develop.

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: n/a
 Serves 4

Vinaigrette Ingredients:

½ c. extra virgin olive oil
¼ c. champagne vinegar
1 t. Dijon mustard
3 T. honey, preferably local
4-5 large blackberries, rinsed
1 T. fresh basil, roughly chopped
 Sea salt and black pepper, to taste


2 c. baby spinach
2 c. baby arugula
2 large ripe peaches, sliced
1 c. blackberries, washed and patted dry
½ c. walnuts, roughly chopped
4 oz. goat cheese, crumbled
 Fresh basil sprigs, for garnish


  1. Add the olive oil, vinegar, Dijon mustard, honey, blackberries, and basil to a food processor container. Season with salt and black pepper, to taste, and process on high until thoroughly emulsified. Taste and add additional honey, salt, and/or black pepper, if desired. Transfer to an airtight container and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
  2. Add the spinach and arugula to a large bowl and toss to combine. Transfer to a serving platter and top with sliced peach, fresh blackberries, walnuts, and goat cheese.
  3. Garnish with sprigs of fresh basil and drizzle some of the blackberry-basil vinaigrette on top. Serve immediately with remaining vinaigrette on the side. Enjoy! 

Instant Pot® Cuban-Style Black Beans and Rice

Instant Pot® Cuban-Style Black Beans and Rice

This hearty meatless dish borrows elements from traditional Cuban black bean recipes, such as the oregano, dried cumin, and bay leaves. However, it isn’t intended as a classic “authentic” interpretation.

 Although not featured here, a tablespoon of tomato paste added prior to cooking would be a nice addition to the flavor profile of this recipe, especially if served as leftovers the next day.

Tip: Reserve the red portion of the pepper top for garnish

 This recipe was tested at 30 minutes active cook time. Although the recipe works at that time, the beans were a little firm. Add an additional two minutes to the active cook time for less firm results.

  Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 32 minutes (+ time to come to pressure)
Natural release: 20 minutes natural release
 Serves: 4


1 c. dried black beans, rinsed and picked over
1 medium red pepper, seeded and cut into large pieces
½ medium white onion, cut into large pieces
½ T. dried oregano
½ T. dried cumin
1 t. garlic powder
Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
2 whole bay leaves
1½ c. chicken or vegetable broth
1 T. red wine vinegar
2 T. red pepper, diced
3 T. avocado, diced
2 T. fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
1 whole lime, cut into wedges (optional)
 3 c. cooked white or yellow rice


  1. Add the beans, red pepper, onion, oregano, dried cumin, garlic powder, salt, black pepper, and bay leaves to Instant Pot®.
  2. Pour broth on top and add the lid. Set the pressure valve to “sealing” and select the “Manual” cooking option on the “High” setting. Set cook time to 32 minutes.
  3. When done cooking, allow the pressure to release naturally for 20 minutes, and then do a quick release of any remaining pressure.
  4. Turn the unit off and carefully remove lid. Transfer red pepper, onion, and ½ cup broth to a blender or food processor. Cover and blend until smooth.
  5. Pour pureed vegetable mixture back into the Instant Pot® and add red wine vinegar. Season with additional salt and black pepper, as desired, and stir to combine. Serve immediately over a bed of cooked rice, topped with chopped red pepper, avocado, and cilantro. Offer lime wedges, if desired. Enjoy!

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