Two things spinned in my head when I woke up Wednesday morning. Both were related to pizza. I had fallen asleep while watching the first episode of David Chang’s new Netflix series Ugly Delicious. Pizza and authenticity was the theme but the first thought in my head was actually pie. Chang visits a pizza chef in Brooklyn that makes a case for traditional American-Italian toppings but what fascinated me more than his arguments was that he always referred to his pizzas as ”pies”. Apparently they sometimes do that in the US. Why did I not know that? I’m gonna say pie from now on. With a Brooklyn accent. ”Jeetyet? Nah, I’m mad hungry! Try this here Kale Pie.”
My second thought was that I really craved pizza (or, ehm, pie)! The real stuff. Wheat + rye, yeast, salt, water and olive oil. With tomato sauce and lots of cheese. A cheese pie, I guess that Brooklyn chef would call it.
So not too long after breakfast, I whipped up the dough, cooked a tomato sauce and bought lots of mozzarella cheese. While the dough was proofing, I decided to also make a cauliflower pizza base. It’s pretty quick to make, Luise prefers it to the traditional base and I thought ”Better having too much pie than too little” (all my thoughts literally had a Brooklyn accent by this point). We were out of both cauliflower and almond flour so I tried it with broccoli and rolled oats instead. It worked like a charm and had a nice green tone (which turned a little browner when baked). The flavor was less sweet and more earthy but held together really well, Better than our original cauliflower base.
We had a jar of spicy green herb sauce left from our meal prep this week so I used that as sauce and went with the whole green vibe and added lemony kale as topping. Instead of mozzarella, we crumbled feta cheese on top because we were already far off he traditional Italian route. Luise added some chickpeas and sunflower seeds that she tossed in olive oil and sumac and we also cracked two eggs on top. Pretty unconventional but also pretty exciting.
When both pizzas were ready I had completely lost interest in that cheese pie that I originally craved (kids loved that one though). The green pizza was so much more interesting. Literally bursting with flavor and spiciness from that green herb sauce. The kale curled up into chips when baked, the sumac sunflower seeds complemented the crunch and the egg yolks added a nice and creamy contrast.
Because I fell asleep, I never saw what conclusion David Chang & Co reached regarding authenticity. But given that this kale pizza probably is as far as you can come from la vera pizza Napolitana and it still tasted pretty epic, I don’t believe that it’s something we should get too occupied by. Ain’t that right? (still with Brooklyn accent).
Lemon Kale Pizza on a Broccoli & Oat Crust - YouTube
We tested the recipe again two days ago to double check all quantities. While we were at it, we also made this video for our youtube channel. Our boys preschool was closed so they were home with us helping out. They loved the cooking part but none of them wanted to eat it. Partly because the green sauce was pretty spicy but also because kale isn’t their favorite pizza topping. That’s however what’s so great with pizza, that you can shape two pizzas from the same base. So if you are cooking for kids, make one adult version with kale and spicy sauce, and a simpler one for the kids.
Three blog posts and three videos in three weeks. We are on a roll!
Kale, Lemon & Egg Pizza on a Cauliflower & Oat Crust Serves 4
You can use any green sauce of choice here but obviously the flavor will change. If you want to use a store-bought pesto it might help to thin it out with more olive oil and lemon to make it easier to spread.
Next time I’m going to try half the amount rolled oats and half almond flour for a slightly sweeter base.
100 g / 1 cup rolled oats
450 g / 1 lb raw broccoli (you can use frozen broccoli as well)
1 tsp salt
Spicy Green Sauce (see recipe below) or pesto
2-3 stalks (50 g) kale
4 tbsp olive oil
100 ml / 1/3 cup sunflower seeds
1 tsp ground sumac
100 ml / 1/3 cup cooked chickpeas
100 g feta cheese
Preheat the oven to 200°C / 400°F and line a baking tray with baking paper.
Place the oats in a food processor and blend until it looks like flour. Discard the thickest part of the broccoli stem, break up the florets and add to the food processor. Mix until it has rice-like consistency. Add eggs and salt and pulse until all is combined. It should be more loose and sticky than a traditional pizza dough. Transfer to the baking paper and form into a pizza base by flattening the dough with your hands, making the edges slightly higher (se video). Pre-bake for 20 minutes or until golden. Meanwhile, prepare the green sauce (see recipe below).
Remove the crust from the oven. Spread the green sauce on top. Discard the thick stems of the kale, chop it into smaller pieces and place in a bowl. Drizzle with 2 tbsp olive oil, lemon and salt and massage the flavor into the leaves. Distribute 2/3 of the kale evenly over the pizza. Stir together sunflower seeds, 1 tbsp olive oil, salt and sumac and toss over the pizza along with the chickpeas. Crumble feta evenly over the pizza, make wells in between the vegetables and crack the eggs into them. Bake for 10-15 minutes more or until the kale is crunchy and the egg whites are firm and the yolks slightly runny. Cut into slices and dig in.
Spicy Green Sauce This is a variation on one of our favorite green sauces. We adapt the herbs to what we have at home. You can also replace some of the herbs (but not all) with baby spinach to save some $$$. We like the extra flavor that the heated cumin seeds add but if you want to keep it simpler, just skip it.
2 tsp cumin seeds (optional)
1 bunch (20 g / 1 cup) fresh parsley
1 bunch (20 g / 1 cup) fresh coriander / cilantro
1/3 cup / 80 ml olive oil
1/2 lemon, juice
1 tiny clove garlic
2 tsp maple syrup
8 slices pickled jalapeño (or other green chili)
Heat the cumin seeds in a dry skillet for about 1-2 minutes. Add them to a food processor (or a large pestle and mortar) along with the rest of sauce ingredients. Mix, mix mix, taste and adjust the flavor to your liking.
After having spent 30 minutes listening to my soon eight-year-old daughter telling a joke, I can tell you with 100% certainty that she’s got a talent for comedy. Someone apparently told her this joke in school and she tried explaining it to me repeatedly without ever reaching the pun. It was the funniest thing I’ve heard in years. Especially because she refused to give up and just kept at it. Something about blood dripping in a dark room and an old woman peeling tomatoes (although I think it should be blood orange, but don’t tell her). While I was literally ROFL with her for failing and yet succeeding with her comedy act, I had this revelation that this is it. This is the meaning of it all. As good as it gets. Total presens. Laughing so my tummy hurts together with someone I love unlimitedly.
So here is a suggestion. Whip up a couple of good spreads and dips, fill a tray with veggies, shut off your phone and sit down with someone you love and tell each other jokes tonight – good and bad ones.
These spreads don’t call for neither tomatoes nor blood oranges, but if you make the one with beetroot, your hands will look blood stained nevertheless [Yes! I knew there was a lame pun somewhere in there]. The pink one is a Beet, Bean & Sumac Spread that we like a lot (especially Luise, who adds a couple of dollops on top of scramble eggs for breakfast). It has a beautiful color and an intricate and tangy flavor that balances the beans and the beets. The white one is a yogurt, spinach and feta dip inspired by a Bon Appetite recipe (but simplified) and it was our kids favorite out of these three (the other two were named “not good” and “terrible” by our daughter). The red-ish is my favorite spread of all times, Muhammara. We make ours with roasted bell peppers, walnuts, almond flour, dates, lemon and cayenne. It has that great balance of rich, fresh, tangy, spicy and sweet. You can roast the bell peppers yourself or buy them roasted in a jar. We have tried both versions and even if home-roasted tastes slightly better, it is honestly not a huge difference. And since it’s 40 minutes quicker, I know which one most of you will go for.
That’s it for this week. Beans, nuts, yogurt, blood stains and bad jokes. My perfect Friday night.
Three Good Spreads
We served these spreads with a variety of raw veggies, roasted potatoes and bread, but they are also good on sandwiches and as sides to almost any dish. The top photo is inspired by a photo from one of Anna Jones wonderful cookbooks. Check out her books if you haven’t already.
Beet, Bean & Sumac Spread Note: You can make this with raw beets if you want to save time, it’s also good. Skip or reduce the water if you do. However, you get a rounder flavour when roasting them so that’s our preferred method.
2 beetroots (approx 250 g / 9 oz)
1 x 400 g / 14 oz can white beans, rinsed
120 ml / 1/2 cup hot water
2 tsp ground sumac (or more lemon zest)
2 tbsp tahini
1/2 lemon, juice and zest
1 pinch sea salt
Preheat the oven at 200°C / 400°F. Peel and trim the beets and cut in quarters. Place them on a small baking tray with a drizzle of oil and bake until soft, approx. 15-20 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly, then place in a food processor with the rest of the ingredients. Blend until smooth. Taste and adjust the flavors to your preference.
Muhammara Note: If you are cooking for kids, leave out the cayenne (and maybe the date as we use it to balance the spiciness in the cayenne). We have shared the easy version here with store bought roasted bell peppers but you can of course roast them yourself.
3 roasted bell peppers (from a jar) (approx 200 g / 1 cup) see note below how to roast them yourself
60 g / 1/2 cup walnuts
45 g / 1/2 cup almond flour
1 soft date, stone removed
2 tbsp tahini or olive oil
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 large pinch cayenne pepper (optional)
sea salt flakes
Add all ingredients to a food processor and mix until smooth. Taste and adjust the flavor and consistency, adding more almond flour to thicken and tahini/oil or lemon to smoothen.
Note: To roast your own bell peppers, simply place them in the oven at 200°C/400°F for 25-30 minutes or until charred. Leave to cool under a bowl (this will make them easier to peel), peel off skin and seeds and add the flesh to the processor with the other ingredients.
2 cups Greek or Turkish yogurt
100 g / 3 1/2 oz feta cheese
1 handful walnuts
100 g / 3 1/2 oz baby spinach
3 tbsp olive oil
1/2 lemon, zest and juice
1 tsp dried mint or a small handful leaves fresh mint, chopped
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Pour yogurt into a bowl, crumble the feta cheese into it and stir until combined. Dry-toast the walnuts in a skillet on medium heat for 5 minutes, pour into small bowl and leave to cool. Add a thin layer of water to the same skillet and bring to a boil. Add half of the spinach, stir and keep adding more as the spinach wilts down. Add the mint to the spinach, season with salt, stir and set aside to cool. Add 2/3 of the spinach to the feta yogurt along with half of the olive oil, lemon juice and zest. Crush the walnuts in your hand, sprinkle over the yogurt and stir. Taste and adjust the flavour. Fold the rest of the spinach, walnuts and oil into the yogurt until it looks a little messy and marbled. Top with freshly ground black pepper.
Completely unrelated but we also just posted this sauerkraut video on our youtube channel. If you haven’t tried to make your own sauerkraut yet, you should! It’s super easy, you basically only need cabbage and salt. And it’s so good – tangy, fresh, gut healthy and all that.
How To Make Sauerkraut – Wild Fermentation - YouTube
We usually don’t do a big thing of Valentine’s day so I’m not sure what happened here. Maybe it was because we recently got married or because Elsa has been drawing and folding Valentine gifts (for us!) for the past week. Perhaps it was because Noah slowly has been starting his kindergarten training so we are finally getting a few moments together again without any kids around. Or was it perhaps simply because we have always secretly been dreaming of creating a big American-style ice cream shake topped with whipped cream, meringues, chocolate and the full shebang. Yup, that was probably it.
Luise mentioned the idea of a shake this morning and a few hours later we found ourselves in our living room window, looking at these two shakes overloaded with toppings (and with a million small pieces of nuts, crushed meringues and chocolate spread across on the floor). As naughty as they look, these shakes are made with real ingredients. They even has beetroot in them. And they are entirely vegan.
The base is a deliciously thick nice cream made with frozen bananas, frozen raspberries, dates, nut milk ice cubes and beetroot. Because we wanted it thick, you need a strong blender or food processor to get it smooth. But you can also just replace some of the frozen ingredients with thawed to make it more like a smoothie and easier to blend. We top it with vegan meringues (which we happened to have at home), whipped coconut cream, melted dark vegan chocolate, chopped hazelnuts, raspberries and a dusting of cacao powder.
So you know what you need to do tomorrow. Whip these babies up for your partner, parent, friend, pet or someone else you love. We shared these with our kids. Their eyeballs almost popped when they saw them and as soon as the first layer of topping was gone, we filled up with more. As shall you.
It’s easy to make vegan meringues using aquafaba but if you are not vegan, you can of course just buy or make regular meringues. Or skip them.
Raspberry & Beetroot Nice Cream
50 g /1/2 cup grated raw beetroot
225 g / 2 cups frozen raspberries
4 soft dates
2 frozen bananas
1/2 tsp freshly ground cardamom
5 coconut milk ice cubes (or other nut milk)
100 g / 3 1/2 oz dark chocolate
3 tbsp hazelnuts
250 ml / 1 cup whipped coconut cream (instructions here) or regular whipped cream
a handful fresh (or frozen and thawed) raspberries
1 tsp cacao powder 4-5 vegan meringues or regular
Melt chocolate over a water bath and chop the hazelnuts finely. Dip the rim of two glasses in the chocolate and then in the nuts. Place the glass in the freezer so the chocolate will set while preparing the smoothie.
Add all nice cream ingredients to a high-speed blender or food processor. Mix and mash using the tamper until everything is smooth, thick and creamy. Add an extra splash nut milk to the blender if needed to loosen up. Drizzle melted dark chocolate inside the glasses and spoon in the smoothie/nice cream. Top generously with whipped coconut cream, raspberries, chopped nuts and more melted chocolate. Sprinkle with cacao powder and crush a few meringues on top.
If you are in the mood for more vegan chocolate treats, check out this aquafaba chocolate mousse that we just posted on our youtube channel.
We hardly need to mention that we love pancakes in our family, do we? A quick look through our insta feeds and cookbooks and you’ll find a wide variety of them. There are small and thick banana pancakes served in bowls for luxurious weekend breakfasts, baked fat almond pancake for a light summer dinner, an impressive pancake layer cake for birthday celebrations and of course the regular thin pancakes aka crêpes that we make almost weekly for dinner. We put lots of savory (or sweet) toppings/fillings on our dinner pancakes and then either fold them or roll them up. And we save the leftovers in a lunch box or have as breakfast the morning after.
Most of our pancake recipes include eggs but today we are sharing one of our favorite vegan (and gluten free) versions. It’s a thin and soft take on socca. You only need two ingredients to make this: chickpea flour (besan) and water, but we like add salt and herbs for more flavor and a nice green color. We made these pancakes for lunch and topped them with mashed avocado, pesto, red cabbage sauerkraut (check out the recipe in Green Kitchen at Home), lettuce and tomato. It was what we had in the fridge and it turned out to be a good and simple combo (no extra cooking needed). But don’t feel obliged to follow us, you can top it with whatever you have at home. If you are not vegan, some goat’s cheese could be good on top as well.
Everyone always say that it’s good to let a pancake batter rest before frying but it is actually extra important when making eggless pancakes or they will be very difficult to flip. At least one hour, just trust us on this or your pancakes will fall apart in the pan. A good quality non-stick pan also makes the flipping a lot easier. We like this ceramic non-stick pan.
Check out this little video from our YouTube channel where we show how to make it.
Green Vegan Chickpea Pancakes - YouTube
We are going to post videos more regularly this year so make sure to subscribe to our channel if you aren’t already, as all our videos might not appear on this blog.
Apart from our usual recipe videos, we will also film a Q&A and behind-the-scenes later this week. So if you have any questions about recipes / meal prep / vegetarianism / our kitchen / kids / books / photography / videos / food styling etc you can ask them here in the comments and we will try to answer them in the video. Thanks!
Green Vegan Chickpea Pancake with Avocado, Pesto and Krauts Makes 4
100 g (1 cup) chickpea flour (besan)
300 ml (1 cup + 3 tbsp) water
1 pinch salt
2 handfuls fresh herbs (we use parsley and basil)
Mix chickpea flour, water, salt and herbs in a blender (or whisk together in a bowl and finely chop the herbs). Leave to rest for about 1 hour (or up to 48 hours in a sealed jar in the fridge). Heat coconut oil in a non-stick pan on medium heat. Add a thin layer of batter (we add 1/3 cup but the amount depends on the size of your pan) and tilt the pan around to make sure it is evenly distributed. Wait 30-60 seconds for the batter to solidify and bubbles start appearing. Carefully loosen the sides with a spatula before flipping the pancake. Slide it onto a plate when both sides are golden. Fry the remaining the pancakes. Divide the avocado and discard the stone. Mash the flesh with a fork. Add avocado on one side of each pancake, drizzle with pesto, add lettuce, sauerkraut and cherry tomatoes and fold it like an omelet. Enjoy!
It’s a new year and instead of all the usual resolutions, cleanses and promises we have simply decided that 2018 is going to be the year that we slay weekend meal prepping. We are talking Sunday evening batch cooking, roasting, peeling and jaring – grandma style – here. We have previously been half-doing this with a more random batch cooking approach (which you can read more about in the first chapter of Green Kitchen at Home). But we’re stepping things up now. Life with three kids is stressful as it is and this method helps us to eat well during the week, save time and be more spontanious. It also helps us avoiding those hangry (hungry/angry) kid-situations. We have only been doing this properly for the past months now but thought we’d start sharing the basics right away, in case you guys want to start doing this along with us.
Food prepping is a simple method and surely many of you already know the basics. The idea is that it is a lot easier to cook and eat real food during the week if you prepare and cook some of the ingredients on the weekend before. Less prepping during the week also means fewer bowls, boards and knives to clean up. So we focus on things that can stay fresh in the fridge during the week and can be used in a number of different meals. Some things are cooked or roasted and other are simply peeled, rinsed or chopped. And we also make one or two sauces/dips/dressing that we can use for our grains and salads. Many of the things we mention will seem super basic (like peeling a carrot), but it does actually make a huge difference to have those ready when the kids come asking and you are busy doing something else. We promise that you and your family will eat four times more carrots with this method. Thank us later.
The Props Before you start you might want top invest in a couple of transparent glass containers and jars (we use Ball jars, Weck jars and a few other jars). They will give you a good visual overlook of what you’ve got in the fridge while also storing the food in the freshest possible way. Make sure they can be stacked easily so they don’t take up too much space in your fridge and pantry. You can use marking tape if you want to keep track of how old your food is, but it’s usually easiest to just look, smell and taste.
The End Game As we are still rookies on this, we are not doing full on meal planning yet. We don’t have an exact plan what dishes we’ll be eating for lunch and dinner throughout the week. What we instead focus on at this point is providing lots of good options by having a mix of cooked and raw ingredients, sauces, leftovers and snacks. Many days we simply combine cooked grains, roasted vegetables, raw vegetables and fruit in a bowl, drizzle with one of the sauces and top with some toasted seeds (like the bowl in the image further down). It’s a good everyday lunch bowl or box that can be varied endlessly depending on seasons and what grains/lentils/sauce you have prepped. As for the kids, they usually prefer their roasted vegetables served individually with the sauce, grains, chickpeas on the side. So simply not as mixed. And if we have prepared a tomato sauce, we might use it for a baked pasta dish one day and inside an enchilada another day. Just to give you an idea. We are not focusing too much on the final dishes in this blog post but will share more ideas later. There are also many recipes in Green Kitchen at Home that can be matched with these preps.
So take a breath and scroll through this list of suggestions what to prep and recipe links. Obviously we don’t prep all of these in the same week. If you are new to this, take one hour in the coming weekend and prepare one sauce, one container with cooked grains, beans or lentils, one tray of roasted veggies and a large jar of peeled carrots in water to start with. It’s of course also allowed to take shortcuts and buy a pesto, hummus or whatever else you might need to make your weekdays easier. One step at the time.
RAW VEGETABLES Vegetable sticks in water – We peel or scrub carrots and cut them into sticks that we store in jars with water in the fridge. It’s the easiest snack when our kids say that they are hungry but dinner isn’t ready. We store them in water so they don’t dry out in the fridge. The deluxe version is to dip them in a jar of hummus or nut butter. Nom nom!
We also rinse and chop cucumber or bell pepper in bite size sticks that we store in the same way.
Peeled and cut beetroots
– Peeling beetroot means getting your hands tainted purple. Unless you were gloves. So it’s easy to skip them. Therefore we peel a whole batch while our hands are already tainted and then cut them into smaller bits. That way we can put them on a tray and roast in the oven with a drizzle of oil and salt even when time is short. Or toss in our juicer for a quick beetroot, apple & lemon juice. It makes juicing so much easier when the beetroots are already peeled and cut in a size that fits the juicer.
Lettuce, spinach & kale – Rinse, chop off thick stems and store wrapped in a towel in the fridge for quick salads and bowls.
COOKED Grains, seudo-grains and lentils
– Quinoa, rice, millet and black lentils can all be cooked ahead and used in stir-fries, patties, salads, soup toppings or desserts. Just follow the cooking instructions (you rather want to cook 1 minute too little than 1 minute too long), let cool and store in sealed glass containers in the fridge.
– Chickpeas and other beans are great in salads, for hummus and other spreads, burgers, falafels, soup toppings etc. Soak and pre-cook dried pulses and keep in glass containers in the fridge. Or buy them precooked and just rinse and put them in a glass container.
We make varieties of quinoa or rice patties whenever we have some quinoa or rice left towards the end of the week. They last well in the fridge and can shine up any dinner or lunch. Store them stacked in glass jars in the fridge and simply heat for a few minutes in a pan or the oven before serving. Here is a link to our Spinach & Quinoa Pattie recipe!
– It’s very easy to make a large portion soup so we often try to make soup on the weekend and keep the leftover soup ready in the fridge for lunch (with lots of toppings). Some days the soup can also become a sauce for pasta or rice. Last week it was a version of this Carrot & Lentil Soup (with the addition of orange juice) and this week we made the Broccoli, Mint & Pea Soup from Green Kitchen at Home. Check out our soup archive for more inspo.
Tray Bakes – One of our favorite dinners and the leftovers store well in the fridge. Just make double trays and have the leftovers for lunch.
Broccoli, brussels sprouts and cauliflower
– Break into florets (cut brussels sprouts in half), drizzle with oil and bake at 200°C / 400°F for 20 minutes or until golden. We use these in salads, lunch bowls and stir fries. They are also one of our kids favorite food, just slightly reheated without any sauces or anything. Store in glass containers in the fridge.
Sweet potatoes, carrots, beetroot (and other roots)
– Cut into bite-size dices, fries or coins. Drizzle with oil and bake at 200°C / 400°F for 25 minutes. You can mix roasted roots into hummus for a great flavor twist. Or put them inside warm sandwiches. Or simply add them to salads. We often eat them cold but you can also reheat them a few minutes in an oven.
Zucchini and aubergine / eggplant – Slice them into thin rounds, brush with oil, place on a baking tray and roast at 200°C for 10-15 minutes or until charred towards the edges. Place in a container, drizzle some extra oil, add 1 garlic clove and leave to marinate in the fridge. A great topping on soup or addition to any salad.
SAUCES & SIDES
Golden Turmeric Tahini Sauce – This is one of our favorite sauces currently. We literally drizzle it on top of everything. Salads, quinoa, kale, egg or sandwiches.
1 cup runny tahini
2 cups water
1/2 lemon, juice
1 tbsp maple syrup or raw honey
(1 tbsp unfiltered apple cider vinegar, optional)
1 chunk fresh ginger, peeled
2 tbsp ground turmeric
sea salt & ground black pepper, to taste
Simply add all ingredients to a blender and mix on high until smooth and frothy. Taste and adjust flavours to your liking. Pour the golden sauce into a jar with an airtight lid. Store in the fridge, keeps up to a week.
Nut+Seed Butter – Making homemade nut butter is not only easy but if you mix the nuts with 50% sunflower seeds it’s also a lot cheaper. We are obsessed with nut butters and use it on top of morning porridge, yogurt, sandwiches and desserts. It’s also great paired with fresh veggie sticks, apples and dates. Here is a link to our homemade nut and seed butter recipe.
Hummus – Always have a jar of hummus in the fridge. Make it from scratch or buy the best version you can find.
Pesto – Any pesto is a life-saver when it comes to adding more flavour to a dish, but if you haven’t tried this Magic Green Sauce, give it a go!
Sauerkraut – We are devoted sauerkraut eaters and makers and have 3 wild fermented sauerkraut recipes in Green Kitchen at Home, try the Golden sauerkraut here. If you don’t dare making your own just yet, buy a good quality one at the supermarket or health food store.
– These vegetable based flatbreads have almost become a signature recipe for us and are so great to keep in the fridge. Use them for quick pizzas or to make massive hummus sandwiches. (Recipes in Green Kitchen at Home)
– Bars or energy balls are our lifesavers when we need a quick sweet snack or post-workout treat. We change the recipe all the time. Our Mint Chocolate Power Bars, Nut, Quinoa Bars and Hemp Protein Bars are three good recipes to start with. We have started making them slightly smaller and wrapping them in baking paper so they look like caramels. They last longer, are more portable and cute!
Muffins – These almond based muffins are only sweetened with dates and banana and a great little treat when you need an energy kick. Make a double batch and store one bag in the fridge and another in the freezer.
Nut & Seed Bread – We make this flour-free Nut & Seed Bread as an alternative to our usual rye bread. We always make two of these loaves at the same time so they will last longer. One slice is very filling and satisfies cravings and blood-sugar spikes.
– The most frequent overnight oats recipe we make is the one with orange & vanilla. We use half orange juice and have plant milk to soak and make a large batch and store in the small jars, just grab a portioned jar in the morning and breakfast is served.
Granola – You can of course buy a granola if you like to save some time but it’s easy to make and perfect if you want to clean out your pantry from the last bits and pieces of seeds, grains, nuts and dried fruit. We have many granola recipes in our books but this Banana Granola is also a popular one. Sometimes we also make a Savory Granola that is great on top of salads and soups.
Hope you liked this! If you want more ideas what to do with your prepped ingredients, check out our instagrams (gkstories | luisegreenkitchenstories) as we’re sharing more daily salad bowls, soups and meals there.
Do you meal prep at home? We’d love to know all your meal prepping tips and tricks . Please leave a comment and share!
Well this feels a bit weird. Writing about winter food in the middle of the night from a cute little house with a tiny swimmingpool in warm and humid Bali, Indonesia. We decided to skip Christmas this year and instead bring the kids on a sort of honeymoon holiday, so we left Stockholm last week and will stay here in Bali for a couple of more weeks. We’re mostly airbnb-ing around the island and have already experienced lots of beautiful places, monsoon down pours mixed with sunshine, excellent tempeh (and crunchy sweet tempeh), creepy insects and countless fruit platters and smoothie bowls. Traveling with three kids is definitely trickier than just one or two but we’re learning and adapting. And at the end of each day it still feels so rewarding seeing the world with them and talking about all the funny and weird travel related subjects that pop-up in their heads. Several years ago we wrote a blog post (and a chapter in our travel book) about traveling with kids and we’re thinking about writing an updated version with more guidelines and tips that we’ve picked up as our crew has grown. Let us know if you’d be interested in that.
But enough about that now. The goal of the day was simply to share this little salad before Christmas is over. I realize that it’s a little late and many of you have already planned your holiday menu. But if you happen to be searching for a side dish that also could work as a main salad and is both pretty and damn tasty, you should give this one a try. We have made this recipe a couple of times in the weeks before we left. Crunchy roasted brussels sprouts have always been a popular dish in our house but what we’ve done lately is adding coconut chips to the tray and also dust everything with cinnamon and finely chopped hazelnuts which adds a super nice nuttiness to the dish. Dried apricots offer sweetness and chewiness, lentils make it more filling and blood orange more festive and fresh. We serve this salad with a simple yogurt dressing but you can skip that if you want to make it vegan. Or drizzle with tahini instead. We love this little dish and hope you will too.
That’s it. The last post of the year. Have a wonderful holiday with lots of good food and we’ll be back in the beginning of January with more recipes, videos, anecdotes, maybe some Bali photos and what not. Thank you for following along! Hugs and kisses.
– David, Luise and the kids.
500 g brussels sprouts
olive oil or coconut oil
1 tsp ground cinnamon
sea salt & pepper
1 handful coconut flakes / chips
100 g / 1/2 cup uncooked black lentils
500 ml / 2 cups water, to cook
olive oil to drizzle
salt and pepper
1/2 lemon, juice
2 blood oranges
1 handful dried apricot
1 handful hazelnuts
1 cup natural yoghurt
1/2 lemon, juice
1 large handful fresh parsley
Preheat the oven to 200°C / 400°F.
Trim bottom of brussels sprouts and cut them in halves. Place in a bowl, drizzle with a few tablespoons oil, sprinkle with cinnamon and salt and toss to cover all. Place on a baking tray and roast in the oven for 25-30 minutes until they are soft, golden and have crispy edges. A few minutes before the brussels sprouts are done, take out the tray and scatter over a handful of coconut chips, drizzle with oil and cinnamon and place the tray back in the oven and roast until golden.
Meanwhile, prepare the lentils. Place rinsed lentils and water in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and let simmer for about 20 minutes, check the exact time, it depends on your specific type lentils. They should be soft and chewy, not mushy. Pour into a sieve to remove any excess water. Place in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil, salt, pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice.
Peel and slice the blood oranges, chop the dried apricots and finely chop the toasted hazelnuts. Place the yogurt in a small bowl and stir in lemon juice, chopped parsley, salt and pepper to taste
Arrange the roasted brussels sprouts and coconut chips on a serving platter together with the lentils. Add sliced blood oranges and scatter with dried apricot and hazelnut dust. Finely add dollops of yogurt sauce and chopped parsley.
The moment I placed these brownies in the oven, I started whining like a disgruntled teenager because Luise had persuaded me to only sweeten them with dates and mix a whole can of black beans into the batter. “They are going to taste like sh*t” might have been the carefully formulated phrase I used. Baking brownies was my idea to start with and I usually don’t complain about healthy desserts, but I was tired that day and my mind was set on the caramel-tasting brownies from the bakery across the street. More than the flavor, it was their texture I wanted to recreate. The crusty top and caramel fudge center that you only can achieve with sugar, butter and flour. I knew these would be far from that. And in my mind that was all Luise’s fault.
The whining escalated into a discussion (aka argument) and by the time the timer on my phone rang, things were, well, kind of tense between us. I cut off a corner piece of the baked brownie and quickly realized that they weren’t as awful as I had expected. Of course when Luise asked me, I did what any 36-year old teenager would do and grunted: “They were okay I guess”. In reality, they were actually pretty good. They didn’t have that crusty texture or typical sugar taste but they were still sweet, gooey but not heavy, chocolatey, energy packed and rich. I added frosting to make them a little more sassy – using dates as sweetener and avocado and coconut oil for an ultra lush and creamy consistency. They turned out really beautiful and jam-packed with good stuff. Rather than a dessert, I’d say that this is more like an energy bar-style brownie, and I found myself sneaking back to the fridge several times that day for another bite.
We’re sharing the recipe and some notes below. But first, check out this little video from our youtube channel where we demonstrate how to make them.
Black Bean Brownie Bites with Chocolate Avocado Frosting - YouTube
Since that first batch of brownies, there have been at least six more batches. A few vegan attempts and various flavor and texture variations. I have gathered a few notes that might come useful in case you want to give them a try.
We use very soft fresh dates that we buy in card board boxes and they are pretty affordable compared to loose weight or medjool dates. Sizes differ so use a scale if you want to be exact.
If you can’t find fresh dates you can use dried dates that you soak in water for a couple of hours. Drain the water before mixing. However, I wouldn’t use dried dates for the frosting as they need the dates to be super soft to achieve a smooth consistency. Try maple syrup instead.
If you aren’t used to sugar free desserts, you can add a couple of tablespoons maple syrup, honey or sugar to the batter. We have tried this recipe both with and without additional sweetening and they taste good both ways. It all depends on what you are used to and your expectations are.
We use a quite mild olive oil and it works really well with the chocolate flavor (not strong at all). However, if you don’t like olive oil, you can use, coconut oil, rapeseed oil or butter instead.
We have also tried a vegan, egg-free version using aquafaba (chickpea water) that we are sharing at the bottom of the recipe. We also tried making aquafaba using black bean water (because it’s a rest product of the beans in the recipe). It didn’t firm up as much when whisked but it did work as a binder. However, it looked kinda gross and added more bean flavor so we decided to stick with chickpea water instead.
We add coffee to the frosting to disguise the avocado flavor. If you don’t like coffee, you can use almond butter or peanut butter instead to give it a flavor twist.
Sea salt flakes are great on top and we love the salt + chocolate combo, but desiccated coconut would also look good.
If you are allergic to nuts, you can mix toasted sunflower seeds into a flour and use instead of almond flour. And use pumpkin seeds instead of walnuts.
Black Bean Brownie Bites with Chocolate Avocado Frosting Makes 24 bites
These taste sweet but not overly so, see notes above if you prefer to make them sweeter. Vegan version below.
20 soft dates (approx 230 g / 8 oz)
1 1/2 cup / 185 g cooked black beans (rinsed)
1/2 cup / 125 ml olive oil or other neutral oil
1/2 cup / 125 ml plant milk or regular milk
1/2 cup / 50 g oat flour (or same amount rolled oats, mixed into a flour)
1/2 cup / 50 g almond flour
6 tbsp cacao powder
1 tsp baking powder
1 pinch salt
1 handful crushed walnuts (optional)
Preheat the oven to 180°C / 350°F. Pit the dates and add them to a food processor along with the rinsed black beans. Mix on high speed. Add oil, milk and eggs (leave out if you are vegan) and mix until smooth. Add almond flour and oat flour (you can make oat flour from rolled oats by simply blending them in a food processor or grinding them in a mortle and pester), cacao powder, baking powder and salt and pulse until everything is mixed. Stir in walnuts (and whipped aquafaba if you are making the vegan version). Place a baking paper in a 28 x 20 cm / 11 x 8 inch rectangular baking dish and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the brownies from the oven once they are firm to touch and leave until completely cool.
Make the frosting by mixing all the ingredients in a food processor until completely smooth. Taste and adjust the flavors, adding more dates (or maple syrup if you want it sweeter) and more cacao powder if you want it richer. Spread the frosting over the brownies, sprinkle with sea salt flakes and cut into bite-size pieces. Store in the fridge.
To make them vegan: Use 3 tbsp more oat flour. Leave out the eggs and whisk 1/3 cup aquafaba (chickpea water) into soft peaks that you stir into the mixed batter together with the walnuts. The vegan version needs approx 45-50 minutes in the oven and will come out slightly stickier but firms up once it cools.
Hey! First of all, thanks for all your cheering words on the news of our marriage. That was fun! Secondly, I promised a lot of persons on instagram that we would share a chocolate recipe which currently goes by the working name Taco Brownies. But all the interest in them made me a little anxious so I’m heading back into the kitchen today to test another round before we’re ready to post them. Here is something to snack on while you wait. A peanut butter sandwich and a green smoothie.
Technically, a sandwich hardly qualifies as a recipe. But what we want to say with this point is really just that you should try peanut butter on a savory sandwich. I love all kind of nut butter sandwiches and even if I usually top it with sliced bananas, apples, strawberries or a sweet compote, this savory version is my most recent addiction. Crispy lettuce and cucumber add a nice textural contrast to the sandwich without competing with the peanut butter flavor. The cottage cheese makes it moist and yummy and the chickpeas … well I don’t know why the chickpeas are there actually. I guess I just like chickpeas inside my sandwiches. This sandwich is yummy, sticky, crunchy, rich and yet fresh somehow. We usually make it with a good quality rye bread but anything goes.
I just realized that this is a green sandwich without avocado so we should perhaps call it “the-death-of-avocado-sandwich-sandwich” or something catchy like that. Anyway, it’s good. And it’s not impossible that you already have the ingredients at home. So, try it!
For the other recipe, I’ll let Luise do the talking. It was her idea to pair the sandwich with a smoothie and since she is queen Latifah of green smoothies I am sure she has something clever to say. /David
Here’s something clever for you. Make this smoothie. It’s that good. It has lots of green vegetables and a mild and fresh taste with tones of lemon and ginger. Just the way I like it. Also, using frozen vegetables makes the smoothie creamy and more nutritious and you can skip the ice. It also works really well paired with a sandwich as well because (most of) you have two hands and now you can have a good snack in each hand. We actually wrote a “In The Other Hand” chapter for our smoothie book with lots of great snacks, but we couldn’t fit it in the book. Lots of love! /Luise
Green Peanut Butter Sandwich
Just one note on peanut butter. Read the ingredient list in the supermarket and go for the brands that only list peanuts (and maybe salt). You can of course use other types of nut butters as well, I’d especially recommend cashew butter for this, but it’s usually a lot pricier.
4 slices rye bread
4 tbsp peanut butter
a few leaves crispy lettuce
5 cm / 2 inches cucumber
4 tbsp cottage cheese
4 tbsp chickpeas / garbanzo beans
2 tsp olive oil
Spread peanut butter on each bread slice. Rinse the lettuce and cucumber. Tear the lettuce into smaller pieces, slice the cucumber thinly and place both on top of each peanut butter sandwich. Top with cottage cheese, chickpeas, a drizzle of olive oil, pea shoots and thyme. Put the sandwich together, wrap with sandwich paper and dig in.
Broccoli & Ginger Smoothie
2 normal glasses or 1 very large
If you don’t have a super powerful blender, start by mixing all ingredients except broccoli and banana (because they are thicker and will slow down the blender blades). When mixed until smooth, add the last ingredients and mix again. If you like it a little sweeter, you can add a fresh date or more banana.
4-5 florets frozen broccoli (or frozen cauliflower)
1 large banana
1 large handful fresh spinach
1 large handful fresh kale
1 large knob fresh ginger
1 slice lemon, peeled
1-2 cups plant milk, (oat milk / rice milk / almond milk)
Add all ingredients to a high speed blender and mix until smooth. Taste and adjust the flavor and consistency if needed. Pour into two glasses or bottles.
Hey guess what, we just got married! In a beautiful greenhouse in Rosendal’s Garden in Stockholm, surrounded by our closest family and friends (+ ALL their kids) and accompanied by live jazz music and gorgeous food. Even though I proposed to Luise in the back of a campervan on New Zealand almost three years ago, we pulled this wedding together – from idea to ”I do” – in less than five weeks. With three young kids, constantly overflowing mailboxes and an unhealthy always-need-to-be-in-control tendency, we realized that if we don’t do a quick and spontaneous wedding, we probably won’t get hitched until we are retired. So instead of our dream wedding going on for three days and nights in the Italian country side, we aimed for an informal and cosy autumn gathering in one of our favorite Stockholm locations. It turned out so much better than we could ever have hoped for and we are now officially mr and mrs.
We let the chefs at Rosendal take care of all the food (which was a huge relief). Our only instructions for the lunch buffet (lunch is much easier if you want friends with kids to attend) was that we wanted hearty salads and food roughly in line with our own philosophy. Typically, we didn’t get any photos of the whole buffet table, but there were roasted vegetables, butter tossed potato and chanterelles, slaw with pickled mustard seeds, hummus, sourdough bread, sauerkraut, a goat’s cheese salad with shredded beets, herb sauces and lots and lots of cake. All seasonal and local, pretty decorated with fruit and flowers. And so good!
Another salad that they prepared was made with roasted pumpkin, cavolo nero and buckwheat and we have recreated our own version of it here below. We never got the exact recipe from the chef so this is a pretty loose interpretation of how we remembered it (after a couple of glasses of champagne). So we are sharing that today, along with a few snaps that David’s sister took at the wedding. Forget everything I’ve previously stated about marriage. This was fun! And I feel damn fortunate to marry the most beautiful woman I know.
Lots of love from us!
The kids were more interested in the fireplace than the camera …
This is a gorgeous and rustic recipe perfect for this season. It would also be ideal for Christmas, maybe with some cinnamon added to the dressing. One of the things we really love about this is that you don’t need to peel the pumpkin, just cut into wedges and you can even keep the seeds on. Some of the seeds might get a little burnt but the one hanging on to the slices add a nice crunch. We cover the pumpkin wedges in dressing both before and after roasting to give them a delicious coating.
Roasted Pumpkin Salad with Cavolo Nero & Buckwheat
1 Hokkaido squash, Kent pumpkin or other small winter squash/pumpkin variety 200 g / 4 cups dinosaur kale (cavolo nero) or regular kale, thick stems removed
1 cup / 250 ml / 170 g raw buckwheat groats, rinsed
125 ml / 1/2 cup olive oil
3 tbsp maple syrup
1-2 lemons, juice + zest 1 cm / 1/2 inch fresh ginger, finely grated
Sea salt & pepper
1/2 cup / 75 g toasted pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup / 150 g feta cheese
Set the oven to 200°C / 400°F fan mode. Divide the pumpkin in half and then cut it into wedges. Leave any seeds that are hanging on to the wedges and discard the rest. Stir together the dressing, taste adjust the flavors. Pour about half of it in a bowl and toss the pumpkin slices in it (keep the remaining dressing in the bowl). Place on a baking tray and roast for about 25-30 minutes. We like it a little burnt towards the edges. When roasted, carefully loosen the wedges from the tray and brush them with the remaining dressing in the bowl.
While the pumpkin is roasting, cook the buckwheat groats in 2 cups water for 7-8 minutes until soft but not mushy. Drain any remaining water and leave to cool off a bit. Add the remaining half of the dressing to a large bowl. Tear the kale leaves into smaller pieces, place in the bowl and use your hands to massage them until they soften up. Add the buckwheat to the bowl and toss so it’s all mixed. Arrange the kale and buckwheat on the tray (or a serving plate) together with the pumpkin wedges. Scatter with pomegranate seeds, pumpkin seeds and crumbled feta cheese. Enjoy!
I know what you are thinking. Where is the cake and what is that red sauce? In most other countries this would be called a trifle or a parfait, but in Denmark we call this an old-fashioned apple cake (although our version is modernized). I have the fondest memories leaning over a huge bowl of Gammeldags æblekage at my grandmother’s kitchen table. It’s made of smooth apple sauce (our version is red) topped with crushed cookie crumbles and whipped cream and it was my favorite dessert in the world. Me and my twin brother spent every other weekend and school holiday at my grandmother’s house. She was the warmest and calmest person we knew, always smiling. My memories are fading but whenever I think of her I can smell the cigarillos she loved to smoke and the hair spray she always wore. And I remember her huge black & white marble coffee table that we often sat around and her warm hugs. She had a big house and rented out one room in the basement, one on the top floor and one in the garden to various tenants. On weekends she baked for everyone in the house. Large batches of spiced pound cake, chocolate cake or her famous (in my world) old-fashioned apple cake. I never thought of it back then but – damn! – she must have been the best landlord. When my twin brother and I were 10 years old she sadly passed away, two days after Christmas, and she left a big hole of emptiness in me. I have been thinking about her so much lately as I have been making this recipe for our kids and telling them stories about her. So this cake and this video is for you grandma. /Luise
Danish Apple Cake - YouTube
We have actually changed quite a few things from my grandmother’s recipe. We ditched the sugar in the apple sauce (because it’s really not needed if you use sweet apples), replaced cookie crumble with a simple nut and date crumble and used whipped coconut cream on top to make it vegan. But it still tastes a lot like the ones she made. And the texture is ace! It’s sweet and tangy and soft and rich and crunchy. And it’s pretty easy to make as well. 1) Cook apple sauce (or use readymade). 2) Chop toasted nuts and mix with sticky dates. 3) Whip cream. 4) Layer. 5) Dive in.
While testing the first version of the recipe, David’s main concern was that it didn’t look pretty enough (typically him). I peeled the apples and didn’t blend the sauce so it did look rather yellow/brownish. But he figured out that by using the most deep red apples we could find, kept the peel on, cooked on low heat and then blended the sauce, it got a beautiful pink/red color. I’ve never seen an apple sauce looking radiant like that before.
Make sure to cook a double batch of the sauce. It’s crazy good on top of yogurt and porridge bowls.
We are definitely not experts on whipped coconut cream. We have failed at making it numerous times as different brands behave differently and some simply don’t work at all. Key is keeping it chilled to get the cream to separate from the liquid and the chilling is also essential when whipping. Usually, the cream solidifies so you scoop it out with a spoon, but when making the video above, we used a brand that separated without solidifying so we could simply pour the cream into the bowl while the rest of the liquid stayed at the bottom of the can. If you want to learn more about Whipped Coconut Cream (and which US brands that work best), go read Ashlae’s post on Coconut Whipped Cream.
I should also mention that if you are not vegan or too fond of coconut cream, regular whipped cream is just as delicious.
Grandma’s Danish Apple Cake Serves 4
If you cant find red apples like ours, you can add a little pomegranate juice or grated beetroot to the apple sauce while mixing to make it more red.
Red Apple Sauce
1 kg / 2 lb red apples (use local produce if available)
250 ml / 1 cup water
1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated
1/2 tsp ground vanilla powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon (or cardamom)
1 tbsp lemon juice
Date & Nut Crumble
180 g / 1 cup almonds
100 g / 1 cup walnuts
Whipped Coconut Cream (or regular cream)
1 can coconut milk, placed in the fridge for a few hours (or coconut cream or heavy cream)
Rinse the apples and chop them in bite size pieces, discarding the core. Place in a large sauce pan along with water, fresh ginger, vanilla powder and cinnamon. Let simmer on low heat for approx 20 minutes or until soft.
Meanwhile, place the nuts on a tray and roast at 150°C / 300°F for approx 15 minutes. Remove the stone from the dates and use a knife to chop them or a fork to mash them. Chop the nuts medium fine, reserve a handful a nuts for topping and mix the rest with the date paste into a crumble. Set aside.
When the apples are done, use a hand (immersion) blender to mix into a smooth apple sauce. Stir lemon juice into the sauce, leave to cool or scoop into a large jar and place in the fridge.
Scoop out the solid cream from 1 can of chilled coconut milk. Use a hand mixer to whip the coconut cream until it’s fluffy and forms soft peaks. If it feels too runny, place the bowl in the freezer for 10-15 minutes and then try whipping again. If you like it sweetened, you can fold in some maple syrup or vanilla into the cream after it is whipped. If using regular cream, simply whip it until soft peaks form.
Place apple sauce as bottom layer in 4 glasses or jars (or use 1 big glass bowl). Top evenly with nut and date crumble and then scoop over whipped cream. Sprinkle chopped nuts on top. Enjoy!
They sit quite well in the fridge so they can be prepared a few hours ahead.
PS! Yesterday also happened to be Noah’s first birthday! Happy day little man! David usually post a little letter to the kids here on their first birthday but he’s been a little busy lately but promises that he will write it in a later post.
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