When life gets busy, sometimes certain things have to give. As is usually the case, life has picked up its usual pace here, and I’ve found myself being hurled through my days at an almost breakneck speed as I juggle the myriad of responsibilities that fill the day. Continue reading →
Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.
― Winston Churchill
I am constantly amazed day in and day out at the power of our words, and the capacity we have to lift each other up or down with them. I’m talking not just about the words we write (for those of you who share blogging as a thing we ‘do’) but also the words we speak.Continue reading →
Love. What a wonderful word. When I was growing up, my mom used to tell me her only care was to bring up children that would love. A lovely goal. In the end I can say I think she did okay, and I can honestly say that above all, I believe that love is undoubtedly the one thing this world can always use more of. Continue reading →
I just wish people would realize that anything’s possible if you try; dreams are made possible if you try.
~ Terry Fox
Good day everyone!
I’ve got a goodie to share today, and this one has been tucked away in the ‘fave salad’ category for many years now.
One of the best things for us folks who love to prepare food is enjoying something in an unfamiliarplace prepared by someone else and enjoying it so much we promptly head home to re-create it.
Well this salad came about after a work trip many many years ago, and it was in Calgary that I first enjoyed this combo as part of a quick healthy lunch.
It has pine nuts in it, which truthfully I don’t use very much and haven’t featured on IPOM before, as they are very expensive. They are, however, a nice treat and combined with the rest of the ingredients here taste rather unreal! Of course, you could also sub in lightly roasted cashew or almond pieces if pine nuts are not on hand.
So without further ado, let’s get to this beautiful salad featuring Farmer’s Market chard & yellow zucchini.
It’s totally vegan & gluten-free too! A rather nice perk, I would say
A single leaf alone provides no shade.
~ Chuck Page
It always seems I am reminded of this recipe at the end of summer when I stumble across fresh yellow zucchini squash.
This time of year they are abundant and cheap, not to mention firm, sweet, and delicious. Of course, you can sub in green for the recipe too, you’ll just miss that sunny hit of yellow in your bowl!
The chard used here adds a nice variety and provides a use for this green in its raw form that can be (for some) rather obscure in its applications.
Of course you can also sub other greens such a raw kale here too, but the case for color remains the same – just looking at the colors in this dish brings a smile to my face!
Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.
~ Thich Nhat Hanh
The beauty here is depending on what you’ve got, this can be made year round & keeps well for 4-5 days in the fridge.
It makes for a truly satisfying & light lunch on the go during the work or school week.
It takes as much energy to wish as it does to plan.
~ Eleanor Roosevelt
Less prepared foods at lunchtime means more freshness in your tupperware. Less pre-bottled dressings means less waste, cost, and preservatives. Less reliance on traditional lunch foods means packing a brown bag becomes exciting & weekday lunches become something to relish.
More high fibre chickpeas means easy filling up on the good stuff. More colorful veggies means a feast for the eyes. More variety & raw greens means more fresh vital energy, so you’ll never miss the standard old heavy stuff.
Vegan Harvest Chickpea Salad:
(3) cups cooked chickpeas or garbanzos
(2) medium yellow zucchini, chopped into one inch pieces
(4-6) cups chopped Red Chard
(1/2) cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
(4) tbsp pine nuts
(2) tsp dried basil
(1/4) cup good olive oil
(3) tbsp red wine vinegar
(2) tsp salt, or to taste
Start by washing and preparing the vegetables.
On the stove, put up a shallow pan filled with an inch of water and turn on the heat to high. Chop the zucchini into one inch pieces and add t the pin with the lid propped just barely on.
Once the water reaches boil, turn it down to simmer and cook for no longer than 3 minutes (set the timer!), just until the zucchini is soft-’ish’ – be careful to not to overcook! Drain the zucchini pieces and set aside to cool.
In a large mixing bowl combine the olive oil, salt, and wine vinegar & mix together with a fork or whisk. Add the cooked chickpeas, sun-dried tomatoes, pine nuts, and basil. Stir all gently to combine.
Add the zucchini and raw chopped chard to the mixture and stir gently to incorporate, taking care not to crush the chard leaves or the zucchini. Taste for seasonings, and transfer to a clean serving bowl and serve!
If you are making this for lunches, store covered with wrap or foil or in a to go container. Last week I packed up my containers in advance and just grabbed them in the morning when I left the house.
Feel free to add freshly ground pepper or crumbled feta to this if you like.
It is also totally wonderful just on its own and truthfully a wonderful break from heavier cheeses and nuts.
As much as I normally try to avoid using pine nuts due to their high cost, I was lucky to find a very reasonable source here in Vancouver recently, and this recipe benefits immensely from their taste and light texture. Of course the substitutes I mentioned above would add their own brand of delicious too
If you choose to cook your chickpeas from scratch, simply put up 2 cups of dry beans to soak in 6-8 cups of cold water for 8-12 hours. Before cooking drain & rinse the soaked beans in more cold water and put up to boil in plenty of salted cold water (about 1 teaspoon salt added to the water). Simply Bring to a boil and simmer for 1 – 1.5 hours or until soft.
If you’ve got the time, this is a wonderful cost saver, not to mention the added benefit of having no cans to open & recycle.
Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.
~ Mahatma Gandhi
Wherever there is a human being, there is an opportunity for kindness.
I hope you might enjoy this celebratory combo as we continue to ring in this beautiful fall season we are having here in this part of the world!
Do you have a chard recipe to share with us?
Do you ever cook beans from scratch?
I’ve certainly posed this question about beans before and am always interested to know who is cooking their own. It is so easy but can be tough to fit in (and to look that far ahead) at the same time.
I became re-inspired about cooking my beans from scratch as much as possible after reading (and trying) a few recipes I brought home with me from my holiday, and after getting to it have been reminded of the taste & texture of freshly cooked beans, especially chickpeas – it is heaven in comparison!
Wishing you all a fabulous sparkly week as always filled with good food, good friends & loved ones!
Real generosity toward the future lies in giving all to the present.
~ Albert Camus
Holla bloggers! I hope you all had a wonderful weekend!
Grateful as always to be here, I spent the weekend enjoying cooking at home and getting back into the groove in my kitchen. Yes, the dancing shoes were on and everything
Since utilizing fresh, accessible & affordable ingredients is fundamental to this blog, I am super excited to keep sharing more easy healthy recipes, and what fun it is to bounce off the energy and inspiration collected on my recent holiday.
This (new to me) gluten-free chickpea flat bread is as versatile as it is tasty, and when it comes to preparation, is almost criminally easy.
Paired with a topper like this Basil Pistou, it makes a perfect light lunch or side to a more substantial meal.
A man taking basil from a woman will love her always.
~ Sir Thomas Moore
Before we start, a few thoughts on food…
I’ve been teasing for quite a few posts about the foods we enjoyed while we were away. Of course I’d planned to write about this for weeks, and the truth when it comes right down to it is just this: the food we enjoyed there was dead simple.
We enjoyed amazing produce, and super fresh bread & cheese. My husband barbecued & I made (and ate) salads galore.
There were a few key ingredients that were thoroughly enjoyed to the last drop, like a balsamic vinegar that tasted as sweet as could be, gorgeous raw walnut oil for our salad dressings, delicious mustard that was added to everything, and wonderful staples like fresh bocconcini, tomatoes, sublime melons, and that amazingly fresh bread.
The crazy thing was that in France, and most notably in the countryside, the fresh healthy stuff came wonderfully affordable compared to home.
Upon our return to the Canadian west coast, fresh on the memories of the market in Provence, a visit to our local farmers market revealed that prices are in some cases 5 times what they were in France (and I was informed that the market we visited was the ‘expensive’ one for tourists by a good French friend).
There, baguettes were at the most 1 dollar (85 euro cents). A giant ball of gorgeous fresh bocconcini cost all of $1.15, and a triangle of brie just a paltry $1.96 (precisely). Sweet ripe melons were sold at every market at a mind boggling 3/$5, and two entire days worth of fresh picked fruit and vegetables cost me all of $9 at a roadside stand.
Enjoying regional foods is beautiful no matter where you are, and treating to aged balsamic vinegar (at $15 a bottle), local walnut oil ($5 a bottle), and fresh pressed local olive oil ($6) was a dream, made that much more amazing by the accessibility and prices.
Here at home, the same balsamic once imported would cost $50. Needless to say, I’m back to adding sugar to my dressings, and they taste delicious too
My return has prompted many new (and renewed) thoughts & ideas about our food here at home and the dream of making delicious, healthy foods available to all.
It was inspiring to say the least, and also eye opening to see such stark differences between the different worlds. So I am back to cooking, and back to work on this project that is so dear to my heart.
I’m so excited to bring you all along, starting with these recipes!
No one has ever become poor by giving.
~ Anne Frank, diary of Anne Frank
Less store bought breads and dips means more taste & freshness without the added cost & waste. Fewer ingredients means easy work of making delicious. Less cost to make healthy goodness means your money can go farther, and who wouldn’t take a bite of that idea?
More fresh garlic means more taste and added amazing health benefits. More grain free recipes at hand means more options for those who may be sensitive. More easy ways to impress your guests means more smiles at the table, after all, nothing brings a smile like the smile of another.
Chickpea Flat Bread:
(1) tbsp good olive oil for oiling the pan
(3) tbsp good olive oil for the recipe
(2.5) cups chickpea (garbanzo bean) flour
(3.5) cups water
(1) tsp salt
(1-2) tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
Start by preheating the oven to 350 degrees. Oil a square or round 8-9 inch cake pan with (1) tbsp of olive oil.
Next, measure the flour into a large bowl. Gradually add the water into the flour, whisking constantly to keep lumps from forming. Add the salt, chopped rosemary, and (3) tbsp olive oil and whisk until smooth.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until golden, about 40 minutes. When done, remove the bread from the oven and let cool for a couple of minutes.
Remove from the pan and cut into slices, or, bring the entire pan to the table or serving area and serve straight from there!
This recipe made a generous amount that lasted in our house all week. If you like, this recipe can easily be halved, in which case you could use a regular loaf pan to bake it in.
We ate this with the pistou in this post but also enjoyed it days later fried in salt & olive oil as delicious croutons for our weeknight salads.
Keep any leftovers in the fridge and use within 5-6 days.
Happiness comes when your work and words are of benefit to yourself and others.
I’d love to hear how this goes for those of you who are looking for easy & affordable gluten free recipes to try. It’s so easy and has a lovely digestibility, not to mention the unexpected gentle chickpea flavor. Yum.
Chickpea flour is very affordable and is available in Asian food stores (it is used in Indian recipes) as well as most health food stores.
The best way to cheer yourself is to try to cheer somebody else up.
~ Mark Twain
- Adapted from Ina Garten in the Barefoot Contessa
(2-4) large garlic cloves (depending on your fondness for garlic!)
(1/4) cup tomato paste
(24) fresh basil leaves (or about 1 packed cup of fresh basil)
(1/2) cup grated Parmesan cheese
(1) cup good olive oil
(1) tbsp lemon juice
(1/4) tsp salt
Place all of the ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend on high until smooth and well incorporated.
Feel free to start and stop the blender to whirl the mixture with a spatula (always taking care to not do this while it is running, mindfulness with the blender can be a big challenge for me!).
Transfer to a sealed container or jar and keep in the fridge. By adding the lemon juice, this recipe should not discolor, but if you choose to you can cover the top of the pistou with a film of olive oil to keep it from drying out at the top while being stored. The original recipe called for all but the salt and lemon, but I couldn’t resist adding my favorite flavor boosters, and I do think it is more delicious for it.
Use this as a spread for bread, or for pasta, in a sandwich, or as a quick perk up for a bowl of hot soup.
This one might be tough for my vegan readers as the cheese really does carry it, but with all the genius for substitutions out there among all of you, nothing would surprise me at all
A quick bit of reading on the difference between pistou & pesto yielded some history on the origins of both (both have been around for centuries), and from what I read the basic difference between the two seems to be the absence of nuts in a pistou.
Great news for those sensitive to nuts, or anyone looking to add easy variety to their repertoire.
In my next post, I’ll share the pasta salad I made with this pistou. Garlicky and delicious, it was a perfect combo with these amazingly ripe local tomatoes
The simplest acts of kindness are by far more powerful than a thousand heads bowing in prayer.
~ Mahatma Gandhi
I hope all of you are basking in the glory of September, whether it is Spring or Fall where you are.
Stay tuned for more recipes and some Not So Fast news coming up! We are hard at work this fall and hope to have some fun to share with you all very soon!
Have you ever tried working with chickpea flour?
Got a favorite pesto or pistou?
I’ve seen a few great posts out there in the blog world using chickpea flour, feel free to share your faves in the comments – I’d love to know if you’ve got a goodie!
Welcome! What is In Pursuit Of More? The blog about living with (just a little) less. By going without, we can gain - by giving to those who have less. Want to make a change in your eating habits for the better? Imagine how you can turn that into something positive for those who would otherwise go hungry. Go without so others don't have to. That's living with (just a little) less.