it's hard to believe that july is at its mid point already. it seems like forever ago that frank and i were thinking about a little summer getaway, and here we are! later on this week we're driving to palm springs for a long weekend with my brother, sis-in-law, and their (almost 1-year old!) son, nico. the last "vacation" we took was when we were living in NYC, amesy was 3 months old, and we thought it was a good idea to fly to california. big mistake. if you remember a few of my posts from then, you'll remember that that trip was an epic disaster in many respects. that preeeetty much scared the crap out of us, so the idea of driving or flying anywhere for an extended period of time was definitely out of the question this time around. and while we are more beach-y kind of people, the idea of staying contained in a house, and having a pool right outside our door seemed very much our speed at this moment in life.
i'm not sure about you, but the abundance of beautiful cookbooks coming out this summer is everything i need to get me out of my creative rut and get cooking. i'm sure you know shelly from the blog, vegetarian ventures. her debut cookbook, vegetarian heartland came out last month and plain and simple, it's a beauty. it's centered around something i know little about: the midwest. at first glance the book is vibrant and inviting; shelly's photography is totally stunning. but the book is more than beautiful photography. it's divided by seasons of the year and in that, things like: campfire recipes (and a how-to on building one!), cozy snow day recipes, and picnic recipes. i have so many recipes dogeared for times in the future when we feel more ready to take weekend jaunts camping or have a proper picnic. the book is vegetarian, there are some gluten free recipes, and some vegan ones, but i can imagine that you could adapt many of them as well :)
wishing you all sweet summer adventures! xo
chilled peanut noodles
recipe from Vegetarian Heartland, by Shelly Westerhausen
i used 100% buckwheat soba noodles here. they tend to stick to each other a bit more after the chilling period, but they taste just as good ;) i also subbed green beans for snap peas, and added roughly 3/4 teaspoon salt to the peanut sauce since the recipe doesn't have any.
| serves 4 |
- 8oz (230g) soba noodles or whole wheat spaghetti
- 1 cup (100g) snap peas
- 1/2 cup (130g) peanut butter
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 2 teaspoons hot chile sauce (such as sriracha)
- 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
- 1/3 cup (80ml) water
- 1 green bell pepper, seeded, deribbed, and thinly sliced
- 1 carrot, cut into matchsticks
- 1 cup (140g) peanuts, chopped, for garnish
- fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish
- bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. add the soba and cook until almost al dente, 7 to 10 minutes. add the snap peas and let boil for 1 minute more. drain the soba and snap peas and transfer to a large bowl.
- in a high-speed blender, combine the peanut butter, sesame oil, rice vinegar, ginger, garlic, honey, chile sauce, lime juice, and water and blend until smooth, about 30 seconds. pour over the soba, add the bell pepper and carrots, and toss until everything is completely coated in peanut sauce. transfer to an airtight container and store in the refrigerator or a small portable cooler for up to 4 hours. just before serving, garnish with peanuts and cilantro.