charred broccoli + red onion salad w/ shaved apples + arugula by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal

i'm not sure if it's like this everywhere, but nyc is in this awesome seasonal in-between with cool mornings and evenings, warm abundant afternoon sunshine; there are remnants of late summer tomatoes and watermelon on our kitchen counter, and the sweetest of winter squash varieties chillin' right beside them.  the market is a hybrid of summer, fall, and bits of winter too, with corn cobs piled high next to buckets of butternut squash.  there are tables littered with a rainbow of tomatoes, plums, brussels sprouts, and pole beans.  these earthy, dewy autumn mornings are definitely growing on me this year too. we inherited a crab apple tree in our backyard which had been providing us much needed shade all summer long, and now we get to enjoy its leaves changing color and its apples mature. 

while i'm still not sure i'm ready for pumpkin recipes yet, (soon, i promise!), i'm easing away from summer salads and switching some of the components up with warm, hearty produce.  i've been making apple, red onion, and arugula salad with a tahini dressing for years (it was even a post way back when!) but with the shift in seasons i wanted to make this salad a bit heavier.  broccoli is perhaps my favorite vegetable ever, and to my delight a few of the vendors at the market have been selling it for the past few weeks.  so for this rendition, charring the broccoli and onion adds a warmer, caramelized flavor and is totally welcomed by shaved crunchy apples; and the lemony tahini is super tart and zingy, but elevates this to a next-level, early autumnal salad!  

also, last week i was over at yahoo food talking about my "food journey", blogging, and gluten-free misconceptions, you can read more here, if you like.  also, some of the work i do outside of the blog is freelance photography. i recently shot the cover for the sweetgreen fall newspaper, and upon flipping through the twitters i saw none other than cindy crawford holding a copy and just about lost my sh!t - you slay, cindy, you slay! 

hope your week is off to an awesome one! xo

charred broccoli + red onion salad w/ shaved apples + arugula (v + gf)

any fresh apple will do here, but i really love honeycrisp or gala apples. they're tart, juicy, and super crunchy which makes the textures in this salad really pop.  

| serves 2 |

creamy lemon dressing

  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (roughly 1 lemon)
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 4-5 tablespoons tahini
  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • fresh pepper


  • 1 head broccoli, cut into florets (roughly 3 cups)
  • 1 medium red onion, sliced into wedges
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • half of 1 apple (preferably honeycrisp or gala)
  • 2-3 cups baby arugula
  • 1/4 cup toasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped


  • in a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, water, and 4 tablespoons of the tahini; add the oil, garlic, salt, and pepper to taste.  if the dressing is too thick, add the remaining tablespoon of tahini, taste and adjust seasonings as needed. cover and set to the side. (the dressing can also be prepared ahead of time.)
  • preheat your oven to 400Β°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  in a large bowl, toss broccoli, onions, oil, and season with salt and pepper. transfer the broccoli and onion to the baking sheet and roast for 30 minutes, until the broccoli is charred in places. use tongs and remove the broccoli, place the onions back in the oven and cook for another 10-15 minutes, until browned in places.  remove from the oven and set aside.
  • in a large bowl, toss together the charred broccoli and onion with the apple, arugula, and 3/4 of the hazelnuts.  give the dressing a stir and drizzle it over the top of the bowl, toss again, adding more dressing if desired.  serve the salad and top with remaining hazelnuts.


similar recipes:

quinoa + black rice veggie bowl

quinoa + black rice veggie bowl

fennel roasted carrots + shallots

fennel roasted carrots + shallots

herb roasted veggie bowl w/ green tahini

herb roasted veggie bowl w/ green tahini

heidi's cauliflower pasta w/ za'atar + olives by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal

i'm pretty sure that when there's a recipe labeled "heidi's..." that we as cookbook readers, food blog consumers, and general fans all know who we're referring to. heidi swanson needs no introduction, she has in many ways built the food blog "house", among other endeavors.  her blog, 101 cookbooks was the first food blog i ever read; her images, her words, her recipes, and the ease at which she allows us all to follow along, as if she were a trusted friend.  

i turned to her blog and cookbooks when i was seeking new ways to change my diet; her approach to cooking and food helped me to formulate more clearly what it meant to eat real food, to be nourished, and to treat yourself well.  how an everyday, or any day, story of food, friendship, family, inspiration, or plain old life, find their way into your home, can get compiled into a meal and served on the kitchen table. heidi transcended that barrier that is the computer screen, and invited us in, to a space beyond recipes and pretty pictures.

her new cookbook, near and far: recipes inspired by home and travel is simply a jewel.  when it showed up on my doorstep this summer i found myself (like a teenager to a pop star) constantly looking through the beautiful pages of her book, placing it on my kitchen table, and then picking it back up to read every word written on each page. the book is organized by regions of the world, starting with san francisco, breaking for an en route section dedicated to packing a nourishing plane ride meal. the book then moves through morocco, japan, italy, and france; and then ending in india.  the chapters are rounded brilliantly offering ideas and different ways of coming to a dish.  it's a journey through different parts of the world, and even if you've been there yourself, you can't help but to admire and cherish the lens through which heidi views the world, and in that, her approach to preparing beautiful meals.  

wishing you all a wonderful start to the fall season, xo!

heidi's cauliflower pasta | dolly and oatmeal

heidi's cauliflower pasta (gluten free + dairy free alternative)

recipe from: Near and Far Recipes Inspired By Home and Travel by Heidi Swanson

this recipes comes from heidi's san francisco section which highlights an inspiring array of inviting bites and meals.  i made this recipe with a few alternatives to make it more friendly to my diet, which i provide below heidi's recipe.  this dish is nothing short of flavorful, simple and comforting, especially for a cool fall day. 

| serves 4-6 |

  • 8 ounces yuba skins or dried pasta
  • 1 1/2 to 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • fine grain sea salt
  • 12 ounces cauliflower, cut into small florets
  • 15 green olives, rinsed, smashed, pitted, and chopped
  • 3 tablespoons creme fraiche, plus more for serving (*dairy-free alternative ingredients below)
  • 2 teaspoons za'atar


  • if you're using yuba skins, cut them into 1/2-inch strips and separate the "noodles" into single layers, creating a light, airy tangle of yuba. heat 1 1/2 tablespoons of the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat and pan-fry the yuba with a generous pinch of salt for about 7 minutes, until the edges of the yuba take on a nice amount of color and crisp up some. remove from the pan and set aside. (Alternatively, if you're using pasta, cook according to the package instructions in well-salted water. Drain and set aside.)
  • to cook the cauliflower, heat the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil in the same skillet over medium-high heat. add the cauliflower and a pinch of salt and saute, stirring occasionally, until the edges brown. about 30 seconds before you think the the cauliflower will be cooked, stir in the olives. remove from the heat, wait about 10 seconds, then stir in the creme fraiche. serve over the bed of yuba skins or pasta, either on individual plates or family-style, sprinkled generously with za'atar and drizzled with creme fraiche.  

*for a gluten-and-dairy-free alternative:

  • for a gluten-free alternative use yuba skins (some are seasoned with miso that contain gluten, so be careful of which ones you purchase), or use a gluten-free pasta/noodle of choice.
  • i made a dairy-free alternative using a coconut yogurt and tahini based sauce. i doubled the amounts here, which provided me with some leftovers for drizzling as heidi's instructs to use just before serving. 

similar recipes:

a cookies 'n cream birthday cake! by Lindsey | Dolly and Oatmeal

it's birthday week over here at casa de love. me and frank's birthdays are within 3 days of each other - his before mine - and so for 3 whole days we're the same age, which for some reason is a big deal to me! we're celebrating a little bit each day. there was a rosh hashanah/bday party at my parent's house to start the week off, then a celebratory dinner at a super duper restaurant we love, we also played hooky from work and took a much needed beach day, and then there was this cake!    originally i had intended on making a larger, more monstrous cake, but then i remembered we're turning a year older and perhaps i should be more kind to our 30-something year old waists.  

aside from canned tuna fish and thai food, frank is the kind of person who is happy with whatever you feed him, so i generally (or selfishly) prepare whatever i feel like eating.  but if there's one thing he's super vocal about it's his love for anything cookies 'n cream related. back a few years ago (way before the blog) i had made him a cookies 'n cream cake using store-bought chocolate cookies, tons of heavy cream and butter, and way too much sugar.  and i'm not sure any other cake i made ever measured up to that one for him, but i wanted to change that, so i endeavored to make a gluten-free and dairy-free version of that same cake.  

the homemade cookies here really make the difference i think; they're almost wafer-like and have subtle sweetness that don't make your teeth hurt.  the chocolate cake layers are rich and moist, somewhat brownie-like.  and then there's a super simple vanilla frosting to coat the cake, and a cookie frosting for the center, delivering that fundamental cookies 'n cream oomph!

big hugs, all! xo

cookies 'n cream cake (gf + df)

for a larger cake, this recipe can be doubled and baked in two 8-inch round cake pans, however check the cook time as larger cakes will take longer to bake - roughly 35-40 minutes.  if you're running short on time, the cookies can be store-bought, i would suggest using your go-to chocolate cookies, or there are some gluten-free and dairy-free oreos making the rounds at some grocery stores. i tried to keep the frosting as low in sugar as possible, but if you find that it's not sweet enough for your taste, feel free to add more.

| makes a double layer 6-inch cake |


  • 1 cup brown rice flour
  • 3/4 cup oat flour
  • 1/2 cup raw cacao powder
  • 3/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 1 teaspoon psyllium husk powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup unrefined virgin coconut oil, melted
  • 5 tablespoons unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  • 1/2 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/4 cup oat flour
  • 1/4 cup almond flour
  • 3/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 1/4 cup raw cacao powder
  • 1 teaspoon psyllium husk powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup unrefined virgin coconut oil, melted
  • 1 large pasture-raised egg
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk


  • 2 cups non-hydrogenated palm shortening
  • 1/2 cup confectioner's sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


make the cookies

  • in a food processor, add the dry ingredients and pulse.  with the motor running, add the oil, 4 tablespoons milk, and vanilla, blend until dough forms a ball - if your mixture does not form a ball add the remaining tablespoons of milk.  turn dough out onto a large piece of parchment paper, about 18-inches long; with your hands, roll the dough into an even 1 1/2-inch log.  wrap with the parchment and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  • preheat oven to 350Β°F and line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper.  with a sharp knife, slice the dough into 1/8-inch thick coins and place on cookie sheets.  bake for 10-12 minutes until firm and fragrant.  let cookies cool and place in a lidded container at room temperature until ready to use. cookies can be stored for up 4 days.    

make the cake

  • preheat oven to 350Β°F and oil two 6-inch round cake pans, then fit the bottoms of each pan with parchment paper; set aside.
  • in a large bowl whisk together the dry ingredients until thoroughly mixed, set aside.  in another large bowl, whisk together the oil and egg; whisk in the vanilla and milks until pale yellow.  in 2 applications, mix the dry ingredients into the wet until thoroughly combined.  divide the batter evenly into each pan and bake in the center of your oven for 30-35 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center of each cake comes out clean.
  • let cakes cool on a rack until cool to the touch, then invert each layer onto a large piece of cling wrap; wrap each piece and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight. 

make the frosting and assemble the cake

  • when you're ready to assemble the cake, make the vanilla frosting.  using an electric mixer, beat together the palm shortening, sugar, and vanilla on medium-high until smooth and creamy, set aside.  
  • in a food processor, pulse about 15 cookies until finely ground. in a separate bowl, combine roughly 3/4 cup of the frosting with 4-5 tablespoons of the ground cookies.
  • remove the cake layers from the refrigerator and place one cake layer on a cake stand or serving platter.  spread the cookie-frosting evenly over the top and sprinkle the top of the frosting liberally with more ground cookies.  place the second layer on top and frost the cake with the vanilla frosting; gently press more ground cookies onto the sides of the cake, or decorate as desired.
  • serve immediately. cake can be stored in the refrigerator covered with parchment paper for up to 3-4 days.


more cake recipes:

chocolate layer cake w/ macadamia mouse + coconut whip

chocolate layer cake w/ macadamia mouse + coconut whip

chocolate coffee layer cake (gf + df)

chocolate coffee layer cake (gf + df)

hazelnut layer cake w/ fig compote (gf + df)

hazelnut layer cake w/ fig compote (gf + df)