Oh Ikea. How much I love thee. Where else can you buy a new futon and go home with elderflower syrup?! I’ve always wondered what the Swedish must think of Ikea… Anyhoo, I digress. Recently, my friend Mariko Corella told me that Ikea carries a vegan version of caviar. After picking my jaw up off the floor, I immediately dashed over to Ikea to check it out and sure enough it exists and for only $1.99!!! Seriously! $1.99, are you out of your mind!? I immediately picked up 5 jars and made Ina Garten’s recipe for lemon capellini with caviar. I used spaghetti instead of capellini as I love the texture of it much better and I added thinly sliced fried lemons to make it a real party. 🙂 Zak claimed this as his new favorite and has asked me to make this 3 nights in a row. As it’s amazingly easy & light, I had no problems fulfilling this request from the hubby! I hope you all go get your TANGKORN (I will never get used to the product names at Ikea or at least say them without a chuckle) today and try this dish out! 🙂
Time from start to plate: 25 minutes
1 bag of spaghetti (16 oz)
1 stick of butter (Ina’s recipe calls for 2 sticks but I found that half the amount works just fine)
3 lemons (2 to zest & juice for the pasta & 1 to slice very thinly to fry up)
Tangkorn (vegan caviar from Ikea)
1/4 cup of flour
Salt & pepper to taste
This is how we do:
Here is Ina’s original recipe for the pasta. While your water is boiling & your pasta is cooking, you can fry up your lemon slices. Quick tip for cooking pasta – add a lot of salt after the water has started boiling. Adding salt before it’s boiled makes the water take longer to act up! Also, my other domestic hero, Nigella Lawson always says that “the water you cook pasta in should be as salty as the Mediterranean” and I completely agree!
In a small bowl, add your flour, salt, pepper and garlic powder and mix. Coat your thinly sliced lemon slices in the mixture and in a pan, heat up some vegetable oil. Throw your lemon slices & and let them get brown & crispy!
When you’ve put together your pasta & caviar dish, add your crispy lemons and enjoy!
It seems that I’m super into mini sliders lately! I came up with this while reading a recipe for a portobello burger in this month’s Rachael Ray magazine. It’s extremely easy & fast to assemble and Zak has now proclaimed this as his new favorite! These are great to serve as appetizers at your next party or if you make a few, you can have them for dinner (and because they’re tiny, you won’t feel so guilty after eating say 10)!
Servings: 6 mini sliders
Time from start to plate: 40 minutes
6 mini portobello mushrooms, stems removed
6 mini slider buns
1 jalapeño, veins & seeds removed & diced
1 onion sliced very thin
This is how we do:
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
In a bowl, pour some balsamic vinegar & olive oil (about 1/4 cup of each). Dunk your mini portobello mushrooms and let them soak for a minute in the balsamic mixture. Place them on a foiled baking sheet with the opening of the caps facing up. Fill each cap with some diced jalapeños.You can add more than one jalapeño if you like a lot of heat but even just one gives a good strong kick. Fill each cap with daiya shreds and then pop the baking sheet into the oven. Let them bake for about 20 to 25 minutes (the daiya cheese should get nice & melty).
While your caps are cooking, you can sauté your onions! You can also choose to grill them if you prefer.
Once your caps are done, turn your oven off but leave them in until you’re ready to assemble your sliders. Toast your buns and then add layers of veganaise, dijon and ketchup. Then add some arugula, sautéed onions, and finish with your slider. Garnish with a cornichon (they are a MUST to complete this dish). 🙂 Try not to eat more than 5 in one sitting.
The hubby and I have been on vacation (hence the long break in between posts) for the past two weeks. We started out our time off in Mendocino with our pups. Mendocino is a very dog-friendly and gorgeous place to visit. If you want lots of nature, beautiful oceans and to be able to bring your best friends, I highly recommend it! In Mendocino, we stayed at this very charming and cute lodge called The Andiron Inn. It’s extremely affordable and you can rent out individual cabin-like rooms. Each room is decorated in a very playful theme AND it’s dog friendly. 🙂 When we first arrived, we were greeted with a handwritten note welcoming us and two bite-sized smores. Of course, I had to recreate this treat and make it myself! This is very easy to make and is great to prepare when you have guests coming over or want to whip something up for a party (and again, it’s my favorite kind of desert – the kind that requires no baking :)). I made a ton and stored them in the freezer. They didn’t last very long though, when someone kept going back every 10 minutes to grab and eat one.
Servings: 1 dozen smore bites
Time from start to plate: 45 minutes
12 graham crackers
1 cup of semi-sweet chocolate chips
24 Dandies vegan marshmallows (these are SUPER awesome)
This is how we do:
In a microwave-safe bowl, place the semi-sweet chocolate chips. Microwave for about 1 to 2 minutes, checking and stirring a couples of times to ensure that the chips are melting and not overcooking. Once you’ve melted down the chocolate, dip a graham cracker in and cover it completely. Place the chocolate-covered graham cracker on a parchment lined baking sheet and place 1 to 2 marshmallows on top. Once you’ve done this with all 12, place in the freezer for about 5 to 10 minutes (until the chocolate hardens).
When you’ve confirmed that the chocolate has hardened, take a match or a lighter and hold it against the marshmallow to create those burnt edges. Beware of the hubby monster that will eat them before you’re done!