not donuts, but dinner

I’m not sure if I can post a dinner recipe ever again.  The Peanut Butter Fluff Donuts have stolen the show!

Despite the peanut buttery donutty excitement, we’re going to do a complete 180 and talk about garlic.

This dinner was loaded with garlic.

In the form of garlic scapes!  They’re baaaaaaack!!

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I first heard about these beauties, from Angela last year.  I was completely intrigued with how to use them and how they would compare with garlic cloves.  Last summer, I made a garlic scape pesto and a garlic scape white bean dip.  I fell in love with this…vegetable?  I’m not sure what you would call it, but it has a slightly milder taste than actual garlic cloves.

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So last night, Chris was getting home late from work and thunderstorms were looming, which seems to be a daily occurrence lately.  I didn’t want to risk hopping on my bike for a grocery run, so I had to make do with what I had.

First thought: garlic scapes need to be used

Second thought: broccoli + lettuce are growing old in the fridge

Third thought: Lundberg GF noodles in the pantry

Fourth thought: garlic scape “mac n cheese”

Fifth thought: invite Kelsey over for dinner to recipe test…well and for her amazing company ;)

I originally found this recipe from Angela, for Vegan Mac n’ Cheese and have adapted it a few different times. [Herbed Mac n’ Cheese + Smoky Noodle Casserole]  It’s such a fun recipe to change with what you have on hand.

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This time, I adapted a few things from my Herbed version.  Instead of using cauliflower, I used broccoli.  Instead of garlic cloves, I used garlic scapes.  I added more fresh rosemary, because, why not?  Also, the original calls for 1.5c cashews, to make a nice creamy sauce, but I wanted to try something different.

I used 3/4 raw cashews + 1c cooked chickpeas.  I figured the chickpeas would give the sauce a nice, rich, creaminess but also lighten up the fat content a bit.  There are still plenty of cashews in this, to ensure a good dose of healthy fats to the meal as well.

The outcome was just want I was looking for!

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Alongside the pasta, I made a large salad with romaine, spinach, carrots, and snap peas.

Also whipped up, was this dressing:

Garden Herb Dressing

  • 1/3c olive oil

  • juice from 1 lemon, ~1/4c

  • 1.5t honey

  • 1t mustard

  • 1/2t salt

  • black pepper

  • 1 garlic scape, chopped

  • ~12 basil leaves

  • 1T fresh thyme

  1. Throw everything a blender/magic bullet/etc and blend until there are no large pieces of the garlic scape.

  2. Taste.  Add more honey if it’s too sour, or more oil if it’s too acidic.  If it’s bland, add a bit more s+p.

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While the pasta was baking, I realized there was no protein for this meal!  Sure there is some in the veggies, pasta, and sauce, but not quite enough.

Solution:  pan sauté cubed tempeh with 1-2T olive oil, salt + pepper, over medium heat

Super simple.

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Garlic Scape Noodle Casserole [adapted from Angela’s Baked Vegan Mac n’ Cheese] serves 4-6

  • 3/4c raw, unsalted cashews

  • 1c chickpeas, rinsed + drained

  • 1 medium carrot, chopped

  • 1/2 onion, chopped

  • 1.5c broccoli

  • 2T nutritional yeast

  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary, de-stemmed

  • 1T earth balance [or butter]

  • 1/4c fresh lemon juice

  • 1t mustard

  • 1 1/4c unsweetened almond milk

  • 1t salt

  • 6 garlic scapes, chopped - flowery stems discarded

  • fresh ground pepper

  • ~12-16oz gluten free or whole wheat pasta [depending on how saucy you like it]

  • 1 slice of gf or wheat bread [optional, for a topping]

  1. Steam or boil chopped carrot, onion and broccoli until just tender.  About 7-12min, depending on method.

  2. *optional: Pulse 1 piece of bread in food processor [or blender] until crumbs have formed.  Set aside.

  3. While veggies are cooking, combine nutritional yeast, cashews, chickpeas, rosemary, lemon juice, mustard, garlic scapes, almond milk, earth balance, salt, and pepper in your blender. [works better than food processor]

  4. Process until smooth.

  5. Drain veggies and add to blender.

  6. Blend again until smooth.

  7. Par-boil pasta for about 6 minutes.

  8. Preheat oven to 350*.

  9. Drain water + rinse with cold water to stop the cooking.

  10. In a large bowl mix sauce + pasta.  It seems like a LOT of sauce, but it thickens substantially while baking.  If you want a lot of sauce, use 12oz of pasta.  If you want it less saucy use 16oz.

  11. In a 1.5-2qt casserole dish, pour in the mixture and bake covered for 25min.

  12. *optional: Uncover + top with breadcrumbs.  Broil on low for ~3min until nice and crispy.

*Sub 3 large garlic cloves, if you can’t find garlic scapes.

It seems like a complete sauce overload, but it really bakes in and becomes quite thick.  You could also use less of the sauce, toss with fully cooked pasta and skip the baking.  For this version, I used 12oz of Lundberg Brown Rice Penne [my favorite GF pasta] and used all but about 3/4c of the sauce.  The 3/4c of extra sauce, went on the table with a spoon, so we could all add more per our liking.  We also used it to top the tempeh.

The rosemary + garlic scape flavors were a great combination.  Although this looks like a heavy summer meal, the flavors kept it light + fresh.

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The toasted breadcrumb topping is a fabulous addition, but it’s still delicious without!  My favorite part about this meal?  Everything was GREEN!  saucy noodles + dressing + salad

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A definite recipe keeper and pulled off in quite the pinch!

Off to do some photography editing, hoping that Lightroom does not EAT anymore of my photo albums!


4th of jooolyyy

After my biking episode…we got home and I was busy in the kitchen.  Natalie seemed intrigued by the vegan garlic scape pesto, so I made her a quick batch before leaving for their house!  It literally takes about 7min from start to finish.  I think this batch came out even a little better, but I’m not sure why…

mmmmm I’m in love

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Also brought a watermelon that was delicious!  I had at least 7 triangles :)

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Pat + Nat got me an awesome Prana computer/purse/tote that I LOVE.  It just so happens to match the yoga bag Chris got me for xmas perfectly!

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Ann is sick of smiling for the camera, hehe.

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Hangin’ out.  Such a fun + relaxing way to spend the 4th!

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Anyone here play washers?  I had never seen this before Pat/Nat made a set.  I like it, but I think I like cornhole better!

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Ann made fabulous salads, per usual! 

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I made Emily’s vegan black bean burgers, which were a huge hit!  Everyone loved them, even the meat eaters.  One friend said this was the most delicious + healthiest cookout he’s ever been to…yay :)

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My plate!  I loaded up the toppings on the bean burger.  Soooo good!!  Oh, and those bean burgers also take about 7min to make, minus cook time.  Love it!  I had a hunk of a vegan seitan “hot dog” that Nat/Pat bought.  They were pretty good…nice + spicy! 

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The neighbors set off 100’sssss of dollars in fireworks…we watched!

The boyz.

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Who runs from a watermelon??

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Everyone does, when the neighbors blow it up with a 1/4 stick of dynamite.  It flew SO far….I think I would have rather eaten it ;)

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Love these ladies!!!

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Such a fun day thanks to Pat + Nat for hosting!  Off to Melissa + Matt’s now for a birthday dinner :)  The celebrating just keeps on going.  I’ll probably have a few cute pics of Jake for you too…so get ready ;)