Thursday, October 13, 2022

Super Green Quinoa Burritos

These Super Green Quinoa Burritos are a major player in our weekly lunch rotation. They are wonderfully portable—wrap in foil for a picnic or even a long plane trip—and easily freezable, but around here, I usually just make all the components ahead of time (quinoa, mung beans, chopped kale, and avocado-tahini spread) and assemble them fresh every day for the week.  

I have to start by talking about the avocado-tahini spread. It is other-worldy. Verdant and tangy, like a nutty guacamole, the consistency is perfect—almost like a whipped butter; fluffy and light, but substantial enough to thickly dress all of the interior ingredients without making the burritos soggy.

I was new to mung beans before this recipe, or so I thought—they are actually the legume responsible for the sprouts on top of your Pad Thai. Mung beans come dried, not canned, but don't have the same laborious cooking time as other dried beans. These little green guys cook for only 5 to 20 minutes, depending on whether you purchase them sprouted or whole. They are hearty, similar to lentils, with an earthy, mellow taste. If you are a regular legume consumer like I am, it's a nice change of pace from the more commonplace varietals.

Finally, these burritos just feel so healthy; the perfect reset after a glutenous weekend or vacation. Despite their little footprint (after I wrap them up in a regular sized tortilla, I always think, that's all?) they are very filling thanks to the protein and fiber-rich quinoa and mung beans. If you happen to find yourself with leftover avocado-tahini spread, you can use it as a salad dressing or chip dip—but I wouldn't count on a surplus.

Super Green Quinoa Burritos (from 101 Cookbooks)

Makes 6 burritos


  • 1 avocado
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 4 scallions, trimmed
  • Handful of chives, basil, and/or cilantro (I always use cilantro)
  • 1/4 c tahini 
  • 1/4 c water
  • 5 Tbsp lemon juice
  • Salt or coconut aminos, to taste (I use both)
  • 1 serrano chile or jalapeno pepper
  • 2 bunches of kale, de-stemmed, and sliced
  • 6 multi-grain, whole-wheat, or spinach tortillas
  • 3 cups cooked mung beans*
  • 3 cups cooked quinoa
  • Toasted pepitas and/or hemp seeds (optional)

1. Combine the avocado, garlic, scallion, herbs, tahini, water, lemon juice, salt, and serrano in a blender or food processor and pulse until creamy. Transfer to a jar.

2. Place the kale in a large bowl, and add about 1/2 of the dressing to it. Massage with your hands until the kale is nicely coated and beginning to collapse a bit.

3. Place one tortilla on the counter and fill with about 1/2 cup of the quinoa, 1/2 cup of the mung beans, a couple generous dollops of the dressing, a handful of the kale mixture, and a sprinkling of pepitas and hemp seeds (if using). Fold and roll, and then repeat with the remaining burritos. Wrap each in parchment paper, and then foil if you're planning on eating later. You can freeze in multiples, wrapped in parchment, and then foil in large plastic bag.

*Mung beans directions often include a long period of soaking prior to cooking, which I never do. Just keep an eye on them to make sure you don't overcook: they will become mushy, and you want them to keep their crunch.

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

One-Bowl Carrot Apple Muffins

Hi! It's me. Long time no post, huh? It's no coincidence that I published my last recipe two weeks prior to birthing my first child, and for the past 17 months....I've been a bit busy. I still use this site frequently to look up past tried and true favorites, and I hope you do too. I'm trying to get back into the recipe sharing game (I've made so many wonderful new dishes during the pandemic) but my posts here on out will likely be sporadic and less aesthetically pleasing—let's call this Kvell in the Kitchen, Toddler Edition, shall we?

I wanted to make my grand re-entry with these One-Bowl Carrot Apple Muffins, a recipe I've made countless times in the past year. They initially caught my eye as an easy way to sneak vegetables into my baby's diet, but I quickly fell in love with their versatile snacking quality and consume them just as frequently as the tot. These muffins satisfy the sweet-tooth itch despite a quite healthy ingredient list, chock full of whole grains (flour, oats) healthy fats (olive oil, almond flour, walnuts) and ample fruits and veggies (in addition to namesake apple and carrot, try pear, parsnip, or sweet potato). I usually smear on Greek yogurt to add some protein, but including pea protein powder right into the batter would check that box, too.

I'm going to wrap up this post now (toddler edition, remember?) but I'm so glad to be back. See you soon!

One-Bowl Carrot Apple Muffins (adapted from Minimalist Baker. Changes including reducing sugar, increasing fruit and veggie proportions, and subbing real egg for flax)

Makes 12 muffins

2 eggs 
1/4 c olive oil
1/3 c mashed very ripe banana
1/4 c maple syrup 
3/4 c finely grated apple
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 1/2  heaping cups (packed) grated carrot/parsnip/sweet potato
2/3 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup almond meal
1 heaping cup gluten-free* or whole wheat** flour
1/4 cup chopped walnuts (optional, for topping)

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
2. Prepare muffin tin with liners or lightly grease them.
3. To eggs, add mashed banana, maple syrup, and olive oil and whisk to combine. Next add baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and whisk to combine.
4. Add almond milk, grated apple and grated carrot/parsnip/sweet potato and stir. Add oats, almond meal, and flour and stir.
5. Divide evenly among 12 muffin tins, filling them all the way up to the top, and top with crushed walnuts (optional).
6. Bake for 32-36 minutes (20-22 if using regular flour), or until deep golden brown and a toothpick or knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool.
7. Store in a covered container or bag at room temperature for up to 2 days, then freeze. 

*Bob's Mills makes really good gluten-free flour mixes that I use sometimes not because I want to avoid gluten, but because the bean flours have a really interesting and complex flavor—and add some protein. 

**If using whole wheat flour, the muffins will bake much faster—cook for only 20 min and check by inserting a knife for doneness. 

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Farmers Market Gazpacho

Save running through a sprinkler, there is hardly anything more refreshing on a hot summer day than a cold cup of gazpacho. Even if the chilled tomato soup is not your jam, I urge you to try this recipe with the bounty of late summer produce available at the farmers markets right now—heirloom, cherry and grape tomatoes in all sorts of scarlet hues mean tons of contrastive yet complimentary nuanced flavors, and the supporting cast of cucumber, onion, and cubanelle peppers are locally abundant too. Basically, this Farmers Market Gazpacho recipe is a love letter to local produce—it’s excellent because it’s in season, making a simple puree of these vegetables in their raw element the best way to showcase their garden-fresh essence.

As I learned from my favorite lifestyle blog Cup of Jo, this NYT recipe is making the rounds. And while it will take you a whopping 7 minutes to whip up a batch (note I’ve omitted the straining step so prep is limited to chopping and blending), I encourage you to get fancy with the presentation as a fun way to glorify such a dazzling drinkable treat. I love the idea of serving the silky-smooth soup in frosted glasses or tumblers; you could even set out double shot glasses alongside a pitcher. With the sacredness of a fine dessert wine or aged spirit, I’ve been enjoying a small glass as soon as I get home from work each night; savoring every sip in obeisance to these precious final days of summer. 

Farmers Market Gazpacho (from New York Times)
Makes 8 to 12 servings (about 1 quart)

About 2 pounds ripe red tomatoes, cored and roughly cut into chunks
1-2 Italian frying (cubanelle) pepper or another long, light green pepper, such as Anaheim, cored, seeded and roughly cut into chunks
1 cucumber, about 8 inches long, peeled and roughly cut into chunks (or 2 Kirbys)
1 small mild onion (white or red), peeled and roughly cut into chunks
1 clove garlic
2 teaspoons sherry vinegar, more to taste
¼ to ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil, more to taste, plus more for drizzling
1 piece of deeply toasted country bread, such as sourdough (optional, I added for extra thickness/creaminess)

1. Combine tomatoes, pepper, cucumber, onion and garlic in a blender or, if using a hand blender, in a deep bowl. Add bread, if using. (If necessary, work in batches.) Blend at high speed until very smooth, at least 2 minutes, pausing occasionally to scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula.
2. With the motor running, add the vinegar and 2 teaspoons salt. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil. The mixture will turn bright orange or dark pink and become smooth and emulsified, like a salad dressing. If it still seems watery, drizzle in more olive oil until texture is creamy.
3. Transfer to a large pitcher (preferably glass) and chill until very cold. Before serving, adjust the seasonings with salt and vinegar. Serve in glasses, over ice if desired, or in a bowl; drizzled with a few drops of olive oil.

Friday, May 24, 2019

Lime & Blistered Peanut Coleslaw

While I'll never deny the merits of a mayonnaise-based coleslaw, there's something wonderfully summertime refreshing about the vinaigrette-based variant. I love how the sharp tang of acid juxtaposes with the earthy, cruciferous veggies; their stout shredded texture holding up beautifully for picnic season.

The first time I made this Lime & Blistered Peanut Coleslaw, I enjoyed the flavors but wasn't thrilled with the composition. The recipe emphasized the necessity of finely shredded matchstick cabbage, which I didn't have the patience for—as a result, the delicate lime, honey and olive oil dressing felt too flimsy for my thick cabbage stalks. This time, I blended the dressing ingredients with the cilantro and jalapeno, plus some garlic, which produced a thick, salsa verde-like consistency robust enough to to match my cruciferous trunks (and saved me ample dicing and de-stemming time).

If you have the time and energy to finely chop a head of cabbage and the dexterity to navigate a Mandoline to shred your carrots, I applaud you! If not, this recipe is primed for a Trader Joe's hack. I used a combination of their shredded cabbage and carrot mix and "Cruciferous Crunch", which added slivered kale, Brussel sprouts, and broccoli to the mix. The flavor explosion of local farmers market or tiny heirloom tomatoes can make a world of difference here, as do the blistered peanuts—don't be shy about toasting them until the edges burn black. They make a fabulous foil to the coleslaw's acidic coat.

I added shelled hemp seeds too—optional, but a great way to add some protein to the salad and a nutty, crunchy pop. (To elevate to a main, serve the coleslaw with Heidi's Cumin-spiked Tofu).

If you go the "hack" route, the salad can be assembled in just minutes—the only thing you need to chop are the tomatoes into halves. Even better is how long it will hold up. I enjoyed the coleslaw all week long for lunch, and it never turned soggy. Simple and agreeable: the temperament of a true summertime salad.

Lime & Blistered Peanut Coleslaw (adapted from 101 Cookbooks)
Serves 6 as a side

18-20 oz shredded cabbage, carrots, Brussel sprouts, kale, and/or broccoli
1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
1 cup unsalted raw peanuts
3 large or 4 small jalapeno peppers, seeds and stems removed
1/3c lime juice + 2 tsp grated rind
2 tsp honey
2 garlic cloves
1 bunch cilantro
3-4 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
3 Tbsp hemp seeds (optional)

1. Blister the peanuts. In a skillet or 350F oven, roast the peanuts for 5 to 10 minutes, shaking the pan a few times along the way until golden and blistered.
2. Make the dressing. Blend the jalapeno, lime juice and zest, honey, garlic, cilantro, olive oil, and salt together in a food processor. Taste to adjust seasonings. (If too tart, add more honey or oil).
3. Assemble the salad. Combine the shredded vegetables, halved tomatoes, and dressing in a large bowl. Fold in the blistered peanuts and hemp seeds. Add more salt, if needed.

Monday, April 22, 2019

Cheesy Greens and Beans on Toast

Think of Cheesy Greens and Beans on Toast the way you do scrambled eggs: a 5-minute meal that’s simple comfort food nonpareil, as appropriate for dinner as it is for breakfast, lunch, or anytime in between. Despite being in the nascent stages of the spring produce growing calendar, there are lots of delightful gems at the farmers market right now; and it’s easy to make this dish seasonal despite lacking the asparagus, peas, and ramps we so wistfully crave but aren’t due for another few weeks. 

As I’ve mentioned in Indian Tofu with Lambsquarters 3 years ago, Lani’s Farm at the GrowNYC Greenmarket offers an abundance of obscure and delicious dark leafy greens that just beg to be chopped, sautéed and wilted in a trifecta of olive oil, garlic, and hot red pepper flakes. The best part about this tried-and-true recipe is that it’s foolproof, allowing you to dabble in some Japanese varietals that may seem, at first, too foreign to buy. Last week, I encountered tatsoi, a marriage of spinach and bok choy, yu choy (bok choy's cousin), ashitba, pak choy, wasabi mustard greens, and Chinese broccoli, to name a few. 

Seemingly less exciting are the scallions and radishes that have been around since winter, but they somehow propel this dish forward into spring. (Plus, I never tire of the radish’s bright violet and magenta hues, sometimes swirled with white, like a bowling ball, or cotton candy ice cream).

I don’t think a ton of work needs to be done to sell this recipe. Garlicky sautéed greens, spicy cubed radish, and creamy white beans are stacked a top thick, toasted sourdough with lots of melty Parmesan cheese; the first bite is a soul-warming gift. There are lots of options for substitutions, as this should be a pantry recipe—something you keep in the back of your head for late, harried dinners or a day when you have time to go visit the farmers market or the grocery store, but not both. Whatever the reason, this recipe is your bridge to warm weather, and all the delightful flora that comes with it (I see you, magnolia, hibiscus and tulips!) as we wait for the local harvest calendar to catch up to the season and our vernal-yearning mindsets. 

Cheesy Greens and Beans on Toast
Makes 2 toasts + 1 ½ cup side of greens


1 bunch dark leafy greens, roughly chopped (stems too)
2 scallions, minced (leeks, onion or shallot work, too)
3 garlic cloves, minced
4 radishes, diced
¾ cup canned cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
2 Tbsp chicken broth (optional)
2 tsp coconut aminos, 1 tsp soy sauce, or dash of salt to taste
½ tsp hot red pepper flakes
Parmesan cheese (2 tbps to ¼ cup, depending on desired level of cheesiness)
Red or white wine vinegar
2 slices of toasted thick bread, such as sourdough


1. Heat 1 Tbsp olive oil over medium heat in a large saucepan. Add garlic and chili flakes, stirring frequently to ensure garlic doesn’t burn, about 2 minutes. Add scallions and radish, cook for 2 more minutes.
2. Add greens to pan. Cook for a few minutes until greens begin to wilt a little. Add chicken broth (if using) and coconut aminos/soy sauce/salt. Stir frequently, until greens are uniformly cooked through and wilted down, a few more minutes. Stir in beans, cook for 1 more minute.
3. Remove from heat and taste greens, add more salt, or hot red pepper flakes, if desired. Stir in cheese, and drizzle with vinegar. Spoon a top toasts until they are piled high.

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Chicken Soup with Toasted Garlic, Mushrooms, and Celery (from Golden Chicken Broth)

Alison Roman’s Dining In: Highly Cookable Recipes is the perfect antidote to your extended winter blues (despite the supposed arrival of Spring). Reading her cookbook is just as enjoyable as cozying up by a fire with an enthralling fiction novel, or engaging in an intimate conversation with a dear, dear friend. Roman’s direct and animatedly humorous prose is so refreshingly familiar that it’s hard to turn the pages without feeling like she is there in person, championing the luxuries of a well-cooked homemade meal with a shrug, giggle, and excellently made stiff drink in hand (or so I imagine). 

The prevailing theme of Dining In is that cooking should be fun, not taxing, and not take up too much time or have too many ingredients. In Roman’s kitchen, imperfections are welcome and eccentricities essential. Just look at some of her recipe titles—"Decidedly Not-Sweet Granola"; "Baked Pasta with Artichokes, Greens, and Too Much Cheese"—for reassurance that your comfort in the kitchen is Roman’s chief consideration.

“There is no reason that the food cooked in your own home should be any less fabulous or bring you any less joy [than dining out]”, Roman writes. “Here you’ll find a collection of recipes that are neither obnoxiously aspirational nor so obvious that you’d wonder why you bought this book, but fall somewhere delightfully in the middle.”

Her declaration couldn’t ring truer for the first recipe I made, Golden Chicken Broth with Turmeric and Garlic for Chicken Soup with Toasted Garlic, Mushrooms, and Celery. A unique twist of ingredients (celery galore, star anise, turmeric, coconut oil) piqued my interest, and an emphatic list of easy substitutions (homemade broth was not mandatory; any hot sauce could substitute for her homemade chili oil) convinced me that the soup wouldn’t be too tall of an order for the two hour slot I had available for it on a Saturday morning. (If you are using store-bought broth, that is. If making broth from scratch, I recommend getting this out of the way the night before—it breaks up the time commitment and refrigerating overnight allows you to skim off extra fat the next day).

The soup was incredible, a true winter woe healing experience. Drinking the broth seemed to melt off any traces of lingering seasonal affective disorder and was as warming and rejuvenating as a bright sunny day (“bottled sunshine”, Roman calls it). Ginger, turmeric and star anise added impossible richness to the liquid, and the earthy, meaty mushrooms contrasted beautifully to the sprightly, crunchy celery slices. A stir of fish sauce and lime added plenty of salt and acidity to the golden tonic, along with a nod to Thai cuisine, emboldened by the cilantro leaves and chili oil that finished off the dish. The crispy garlic slices are the cherry on top, sautéed luxuriously in coconut oil and bringing a final pop of delectable flavor to the finger-licking (bowl-slurping?) dish.

Golden Chicken Broth with Turmeric and Garlic (from Dining In)
Makes 10 cups

1 Tbsp canola, vegetable, or coconut oil
1 large yellow onion, unpeeled, halved
2 heads of garlic, halved crosswise
2 (2-inch) pieces fresh turmeric, peeled and halved lengthwise, or 1 teaspoons ground
1 (4-inch) piece ginger, peeled and halved lengthwise
4 celery stalks, chopped
1 large fennel bulb, chopped (I skipped this and doubled celery)
2 fresh or fried bay leaves (optional)
2 whole star anise or 3 whole cloves
1 (3.5- to 4-lb) chicken or 3.5- to 4-pounds chicken carcasses, backbones, and/or wings (I use Trader Joe's Organic Free Range Chicken Family Pack, which comes with 2 split breasts and 4 drumsticks)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Heat the oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, fresh turmeric (if using ground, you’ll do it later), and ginger, all cut-side down. Cook, without stirring, until everything starts to lightly char and smells good, about 4 minutes. Add the celery, fennel, bay leaves (if using), and star anise, and stir to coat (add the ground turmeric now also). Cook, stirring everything around, until the vegetables start to soften and take on a touch of color, about 4 minutes. Add the chicken and 12 cups water. Bring to a simmer and reduce the heat to medium-low.

2. Simmer the stock, uncovered, until the chicken is just cooked through but still has some life left in it (you don’t want to dry it out), about 30 minutes. Remove the chicken and let it cool enough to handle (if using chicken parts, skip this step and keep simmering), keeping the stock at a simmer while the chicken cools.

3. Pick the meat from the cooled bird, separating it from the fat, bones, and cartilage, and set the meat aside. Place all the fat, bone, and cartilage into the pot and keep simmering for another 2 to 2.5 hours, seasoning as you go with salt and pepper.

4. Once the stock has been reduced by about a third and is as delicious as can be, strain everything. From here, you can drink it, freeze it for later, or start building a soup.

Chicken Soup with Toasted Garlic, Mushrooms, and Celery (from Dining In)
Serves 4

2 Tbsp unrefined coconut or vegetable oil
8 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 large shallots, thinly sliced crosswise into rings
1 lb mushrooms, such as maitake, oyster, shiitake, or crimini, quartered
8 cups Golden Chicken Broth (from recipe above) or store-bought low-sodium chicken broth
4 celery stalks, thinly sliced on the diagonal, plus 1/2 cup celery leaves
2 to 3 cups cooked chicken meat
1 tsp Asian fish sauce (preferably Red Boat), plus more as needed (optional)
1 lime, quartered
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, tender stems and leaves
Crunchy chili oil or hot sauce/sesame seeds/chili flakes, for serving

1. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the garlic, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the garlic is lightly fried and turning golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, remove the garlic and drain on a plate lined with a paper towel. Season with salt and set aside.

2. Add the shallots to the same pot and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the shallots are lightly fried and turning golden brown but are not yet crisp, 3 to 4 minutes.

3. Add the mushrooms, seasoning them with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until they’re beginning to brown and are totally softened, about 4 minutes. Add the broth and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and cook, uncovered, for 30 to 40 minutes, until the flavors get to know each other and the broth tastes a little shalloty and a little mushroomy, seasoning with additional salt and pepper as needed.

4. Once the broth is as good as can be, add the sliced celery and chicken. Cook until the celery is just tender and the chicken is warmed through, 3 to 4 minutes. Season with fish sauce, if using, and lots of fresh lime juice. Stir in the celery leaves, cilantro, a generous spoonful of chili oil (or drizzle of hot sauce or chili flakes) before topping with toasted garlic and serving. (The soup can be enjoyed on its own, or served over rice, rice noodles, or quinoa).

Friday, February 1, 2019

Smoky Quinoa Black Bean Falafel

I adore falafel, but it’s definitely not one of my favorite dishes to make. I put the two-bite morsels in the same boat as sushi: ideal take-out fare, where I can gleefully delight in every transportable component from the tiny side condiments to the just-so placed meal elements inside the rectangular cardboard container, not at an inch of surface area to spare. Fried chickpea patties are probably not the first dish that comes to mind when you think dinner on-the-go, but I happen to live near Taim, which serves sensational herbed falafel nestled against perfectly proportioned dollops of hummus, tahini, Israeli salad, and tabbouleh, plus a za’atar spiced pita bread on the side. The arrangement is nothing short of heaven, and I’ll happily dig into this smorgasbord of flavors with my plastic fork over recreating each of these accoutrements from scratch any day.
I know, I know, falafel isn’t hard to make. It involves a food processor and an oven. (I actually have an excellent recipe for the homemade version here). But let’s be honest, it’s not exactly a “put everything in the food processor!” kind of dish. It involves herbs—usually more than one kind—that have to be carefully destemmed before blending. The bulb, whether it be onions, scallions, or shallots, likely need to be chopped too. Then each patty has to be hand-formed, and before you know it, the whole endeavor becomes quite cumbersome. (On second thought, can I have an extra za’atar spiced pita with my order, please?) 
Quashing all of my grievances with a single recipe is this Smoky Quinoa Black Bean Falafel. Here, we have a true everything-into-the-food-processor patty, no knife required. Even better, it’s a pantry item rendition: you most likely already have the ingredients in your larder. The base is a bean, seed and nut mix (hello protein!) seasoned with ample spices, tomato paste, and chipotle pepper for acidity; and coconut aminos and nutritional yeast for umami. (Don’t fret if you don’t have some of the more obscure ingredients. Soy sauce can easily take the place of coconut aminos—just omit the salt—and nutritional yeast is optional. If you don’t have chipotle peppers in adobe lying around, use one teaspoon of chili powder instead). 

Dana of Minimalist Baker—the quick & easy vegan cooking queen— is behind the recipe, so you know she has a few tried-and-true tricks up her sleeve when it comes to texture. To ensure a super crispy crust without using any oil, Dana bakes the canned beans in advance to rid of excess water, ensuring that the quinoa/black bean base is sticky and unyielding. You’ll feel the sturdiness of the batter in your hands after blending: its appropriately crumbly, but not too pliant; and just gummy enough to instill confidence that each rolled patty will deftly hold its own. Post-baking, this translates to an overwhelmingly satisfying chip-like crunch on the outside, and moist, meaty chew on the inside. 

I was also able to adjust my patty-forming technique to be much more efficient than in the past. The trick lies in rolling each patty with your palms, rather than your fingers. Using a heaping tablespoon of batter per patty, I would scoop the contents into the palm of my hand, where I would roll it into a ball. Then, I would flatten the patty—again, only using the palm of my hand—before transferring to the baking sheet. Each patty took about 30 seconds with this method. 

Try the falafel in a pita or on top of a salad—I always like serving mine with some diced tomatoes and cucumbers, but the second time around I got creative and added some olives and pickled onions, too. For a simple tahini dressing, combine 3 parts tahini, 2 parts fresh lemon juice, 1 part olive oil, and enough water (likely the same amount as the lemon juice) to achieve a drizzly consistency. (Water will thicken tahini before it thins it, so don’t be alarmed if at the beginning you achieve the reverse effect). Then, season with salt and pepper to taste.

Smoky Quinoa Black Bean Falafel (from Minimalist Baker)
Makes 16 falafel patties

1 cup cooked and cooled quinoa, from 1/2 cup dry (make sure it's cooked and completely cooled before using) 
1 15-ounce can black beans (rinsed, drained, dried) 
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds (raw or roasted) 
5 cloves garlic (skin removed and crushed) 
1/2 tsp sea salt, plus more to taste 
1 tsp ground cumin 
1/2 tsp ground coriander 
2 Tbsp tomato paste 
2 Tbsp coconut aminos (or soy sauce, if using, omit the sea salt)
1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce (can sub 1 tsp chili powder) 
1 tsp nutritional yeast (optional)

1. If you haven’t prepared your quinoa yet, do so now (make sure it’s cooked and cooled completely before use). 
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Add rinsed, dried black beans to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes or until beans appear cracked and feel dry to the touch. Remove beans from the oven and then increase oven heat to 375 degrees F. 
3. Add black beans to a food processor along with pumpkin seeds and garlic and pulse into a loose meal. Then add cooked/cooled quinoa, salt, cumin, coriander, tomato paste, coconut aminos, chipotle pepper in adobo, and nutritional yeast (optional). Blend to combine until a textured dough forms (you're not looking for a purée). 
4. Taste and adjust flavor as needed, adding more coconut aminos for saltiness/depth of flavor, adobo sauce for heat, cumin for smokiness, or salt for overall flavor. 
5. Scoop out 1 1/2 Tbsp amounts and gently form into small discs using your hands. Add formed falafel to a parchment-lined baking sheet. 
6. Bake for 15 minutes. Then flip to ensure even baking and bake for 10-15 minutes more or until golden brown and crispy on the edges.