Kale Salad with Spicy Cannellini Beans + Lemon Chia Seed Dressing

Kale Salad with Spicy Cannellini Beans and Lemon Chia Seed Dressing | ourfourforks.com #vegan #paleo #glutenfree #recipe

When colder months roll around, it’s easy to trade in salads for warmer (sometimes less healthy) options, but this kale salad is the perfect cool weather meal. Because kale is pretty sturdy, it can stand up to the weight of the spicy beans and warm sweet potato spirals and hold up in the fridge. To make it a full meal, add some roasted sunflower seeds for crunch and top with a protein of choice….

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Lemon Olive Oil Polenta Cake with Boozy Bourbon Cherries

Lemon Olive Oil Polenta Cake | ourfourforks.com

Sometimes when I crave a food, I become a little obsessed. And lately that food is polenta. Not the creamy, warm polenta that may be paired with fall or winter vegetables, but summer polenta: grilled polenta squares, cornmeal pancakes and this lemon olive oil polenta cake. Josh and I went to visit my family on Long Island this weekend and since I couldn’t go to the beach (weather), making this lemon olive oil polenta cake with Isabel was my stand-in activity. It underwent a few variations, but I ultimately settled on this moist version made with honey, polenta, olive oil, zesty lemons and almond meal.

 

I love this recipe because of it’s versatility; if you’re me, you’re likely to have these ingredients on hand at any given time. Paired with yogurt and fruit, it’s the perfect breakfast cake (think fancy corn muffin in cake form). Paired with crème fraîche, coconut whipped cream or vanilla ice cream, it’s the perfect summer dessert. And sliced up plain with some (almond) butter and jam – afternoon snack.

 

Lemon Olive Oil Polenta Cake | ourfourforks.com

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Grilled Sugar Snap Peas with Lemon Oregano Butter

Grilled Sugar Snap Peas with Lemon Oregano Butter | ourfourforks.com

In the fall and winter, I roast everything. But as soon as there is a glimmer of warmth in the spring, I start to grill. Josh and I live in a 700 square foot apartment in South Boston; our kitchen is tiny and we have no outdoor space for a grill. But when we’re not enjoying someone else’s barbecue, we use our grill pan indoors. Our apartment sits in a cloud of smoke afterwards, but we’d both argue it’s worth it.

 

Grilled sugar snap peas with lemon oregano butter are the perfect summer side dish. The snap peas are sweet and retain their crispiness when grilled. Their subtle chargrilled flavor is balanced out by the delicate shallots, lemon zest and fresh oregano. I ate these with salmon and topped them on my lunch salad the next day. If you choose to use a real grill rather than a grill pan, you may want to skewer the sugar snap peas first. Vegan? Simply substitute the butter for an oil of your choice.

 

Grilled Sugar Snap Peas with Lemon Oregano Butter | ourfourforks.com

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Lemon Chia Seed Muffins

Lemon Chia Seed Muffins | ourfourforks.com

This Saturday was warmer than most recent Saturdays and so I made spring lemon chia seed muffins. The idea to make them popped into my head at work and they came out better than I could have asked for. Gluten-free and paleo, these muffins are lemony, light and moist with a bit of chia seed crunch. Made with coconut flour, these lemon chia seed muffins are also high in protein and fiber. And the coconut flavor of the flour is completely masked by the lemon; they taste like traditional lemon poppy seed muffins without being loaded with wheat, sugar and oil.

 

Josh is reading Born to Run, a book about Mexican Tarahumara Indians with a tradition of extreme barefoot distance running (hundreds of miles without injuries). Chia seeds are a dietary staple for these runners and although Josh and I only ran 6 miles this weekend, I like to think we ran faster than usual for eating these muffins.

 

Lemon Chia Seed Muffins | ourfourforks.com

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Carrot and Sunflower Seed Salad

Carrot and Sunflower Seed Salad

When I heard that one of my favorite cafes, Rose Bakery, just opened in a third location in New York City, I immediately started shredding carrots to make my version of their carrot and sunflower seed salad. Several years ago, I bought their cookbook on a whim: Breakfast, Lunch, Tea: The Many Little Meals of Rose Bakery kept coming up as an Amazon recommendation and I liked look of it.

 

Carrot and Sunflower Seed Salad

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