pink pickled radishes

radish

I love to pickle veggies to keep in the fridge to add a pop of color and bright acidity to meals.  It just makes everything seem special when you have something hot pink in your bowl.  I usually pickle onions, beets, and lately, radishes.  Radishes are in season now and at their best- crunchy, fresh and juicy.  I love them raw, but also they’re so good pickled- and perfect for people who may not usually enjoy them because of their peppery bite.  The pickling process tames their sharpness.

These take hardly any time to make, turn a beautiful light pink, and will keep in your fridge about a week.  Fair warning, though, their sulfur content can make them quite stinky, so be prepared.  But they taste fabulous and are so healthy for you: rich in antioxidants, magnesium, copper, calcium, manganese and b vitamins, plus potently cancer fighting and supportive of liver and kidney health.

Add in anything you like to the pickling liquid, like garlic cloves, black peppercorns, ginger slices, fennel seeds, or any other spice.  Most often, I make these without any spice at all and they’re still amazing.  You can add a touch of sweetener if you prefer it less tart (maybe about 1 tablespoon sugar for the recipe) but I prefer it without, personally.

some photos of the radishes in action:

cashew ricotta bowl butternut broccoli

with roasted potato, butternut + its seeds, broccoli, and cashew ricotta

spring Quinoa fennel salad

in a spring quinoa salad with citrus and mint

lunch bowl beet radish tahini snap pea

with pickled chioggia beets, avocado, chickpeas, snap peas, parsley, tahini dressing

Lunch tiffin zero waste glory bowl vegan

in a glory bowl to go lunch at the beach

tofu Bang mi sandwich

On a quick tofu banh mi iteration for Vin’s lunch (check out the hashtag #mamaeatsplantsbanhmi for this recipe).

I’d love to see what you’re adding them too!  If you share, please tag me in your photo @mamaeatsplants so I can see it!  I hope these bring brightness to your day, especially if spring has still not quite reached you yet.  Lots of love xx

 

quick pickled pink radishes  

ingredients:

1 bunch radishes

1 cup apple cider vinegar or white vinegar

1/2 cup water

1 teaspoon kosher salt

add ins: here I did 1 dried chile de arbol and 1 teaspoon each coriander seed and mustard seeds

method:

Slice radishes thinly (I used a mandolin to make quick work of this task).  Add to a jar with a lid.

radish

In a small pot, add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil.

pickling

Pour the hot liquid over the radishes and let sit until cool, about 20 minutes.

Radish pickles

Put the lid on and refrigerate up to a week- they are still good to eat past this but start to lose flavor after this point and turn a dull color.

radish pickles

saturday haul + what i’m cooking this week

market haul

The past few months I’ve let go of meal planning in favor of buying whatever looks good to me and crafting meals from there.

The main problems I run into with meal planning is that I like to eat what I feel like that day and sometimes I don’t feel like eating what I’ve planned.  I resent not having room for flexibility, in my meals and in my life in general, so I dropped meal planning and it has felt so good to me.  But, this week I know things are going to be busy, so I did plan out a few dinners, but also bought some extra ingredients as wildcards to use how I like.

What are you cooking this week in spring?  I’d love to know.  Let’s share!

market cart spring

What I bought this week:

at the farmers market:

strawberries- for spinach salad and topping oatmeal and chia pudding

tangelos- best snack ever

pink lady apples- snacks with nut butter and cinnamon

brown rice- risotto, lunch bowls, breakfast porridge instead of oats, or rice pudding with cashew milk and cinnamon sticks and golden raisins and vanilla.

sourdough baguette- croutons for the kale caesar

avocados- self explanatory

leeks- leeks vinaigrette

spring onions- for roasting and for the quinoa salad

fennel- for the quinoa salad, and snacking

garlic and shallot and red onion

potatoes- to roast

asparagus- may make a chickpea fritatta with these of just roast with the spring onions.

baby artichokes- for risotto

peas- for risotto

kale- kale caesar.

carrots- soup and snacks with hummus or vinaigrette to dip.

radishes- for pickling.  Simply slice radishes thinly and pour over hot apple cider vinegar (dilute with water half and half if you don’t like it as sharp) and a bit of salt.  Let sit till cool and refrigerate.

red cabbage- I love making a slaw with this, braising it with apples and balsamic, or on sammies.

at the co-op:

red quinoa- for the quinoa salad, and topping the carrot soup.

almond butter- for lunches and snacks with dates and apples.

peanut butter- for the peanut sauce and lunches.

ginger- for the peanut sauce, the soup, and to steep as fresh tea with lemon slices.

stevia sweetened chocolate- a treat for lunches and sweet tooth.

gluten free pasta- for the noodle bowls.

mung beans- for the salad.

french lentils- for topping the leeks vinaigrette and for lunches.

cashews- for chia pudding.

cinnamon- for oats and to sprinkle on apples with almond butter.

tofu- for the tofu feta and to make with tamari and sesame oil for lunch sammies/bowls.

grocery cart

what I’m cooking with it all: (will update with pics throughout the week once I’ve cooked it)

peanut noodle bowls:  peanut sauce on gf brown rice noodles with blanched kale, pickled radish, shredded red cabbage tossed with tamari and lime, julienned carrots, sesame seeds and avocado.  Carrot soup on the side.

Peanut noodle bowl vegan kale radish sesame cucumber

grapefruit, quinoa, mint salad: with segments of pomelo instead of strawberries, red quinoa, thinly sliced fennel, and this tofu feta.  On the side:  leeks vinaigrette (I steam them instead of boiling to keep more flavor), and will add some french lentils on top too.

spring Quinoa fennel salad

Leeks vinaigrette vegan

kale caesar with creamy cashew dressing: roasted chickpeas and croutons from the baguette (slice or tear into pieces, toss with a little olive oil and salt, bake at 400 till crispy).  I added extra lemon juice and chopped capers to the dressing and topped with my vegan parm on top and it was perfect.

kale romaine vegan caesar gluten free chickpea

leftover carrot soup, loaded with veggies, quinoa and seeds a la this recipe.  this strawberry spinach salad with tofu feta on the side.

mung bean salad with caramelized carrots + steamed and smashed/roasted potatoes (steam small potatoes till fork tender, place on baking sheet, smash lightly to flatten out with the bottom of a glass, brush with oil and salt, herbs, roast at 400 till crisp on edges).

mung Bean carrot salad vegan feta ottolenghi

brown rice risotto: I cook it quite similar to this recipe, omit the cheese and sub with vegan cheese or a little cashew cream/ricotta, also add baby artichokes, spinach, sub onions for leeks.  This takes a long time of standing and stirring so be forewarned.  So good though- meditate, listen to a podcast, or enjoy a glass of wine and put on some good music while stirring.

risotto artichoke springtime

vanilla chia pudding: creamy and decadent, loaded with good stuff.  I was out of vanilla so I did nutmeg instead and it was fab, kind of like eggnog.  Another go to combo is orange zest and cardamom.

Chia pudding cashews dates nutmeg cinnamon vegan

big pot of chickpeas: to make hummus, and to add in lunches and meals and roasting for the kale caesar.

what i ate in a day in spring

Baby artichokes

Hello friends!  It’s a rainy spring week here, and a few new things are starting to pop up at the market- peas, artichokes, strawberries, and asparagus.  So exciting!  Here’s another “what I ate in a day” style post- you guys seem to enjoy them so I keep posting them, but I’d like to say that the “best” way to eat is the way that YOUR body likes to eat.  I eat intuitively, which means I eat what I feel like that day, and also means that it looks totally different day to day- but the basis is always a variety of whole, plant foods- locally grown and/or unpackaged because I’m privileged to have access to that.  Your body may need more, less, or different kinds of food than what I personally eat to feel good.  I’m here to share ideas, not shame anyone.  You can check out my post on overeating/eating philosophy here and also check out other “what I ate” style posts here.  I will do one of these for the kids and husband next to share the variety, but we generally eat about the same.

Here’s what I ate in a day this week:

breakfast:  

I always start the morning off with a quart of fresh filtered water (reverse osmosis that we get in bulk in a glass carboy at our co-op- our tap water tastes yucky to me and is questionable as far as regulation, we call it “Davis gin” lol).  I also made myself some reishi “coffee” with some old herbs I’m trying to use up.  The taste is bitter and deep, similar to coffee but different and also boosts immunity.

reishi coffee

A little later on, I had oats, which is rare for me because they sometimes irritate my joints, but sometimes with the rainy weather I crave a bowl of them.  I had them with local kiwi, chia and flax seeds, and a spoonful of macadamia nut butter.

Kiwi oats

lunch:

I taught gardening at the elementary school this day and brought some leftover kale salad- recipe here– with added chickpeas, carrots, and red cabbage + toasted pumpkin and sesame seeds.  Also, another quart of water I brought with me in a son jar.  My two tier tiffin was full on bow levels with the salad but I forgot to take a picture till I was almost done- oops!  Definitely was a giant bowl of it, it’s so good and filling, and kale is abundant and cheap at the market and my backyard.

kale Salad

snack:  

After class, I had to run some errands, and ate a carrot, Fuji apple, and some bulk black pepper cashews.  I brought my insulated kleen kanteen with some peppermint tea, too.

 

 

 

When I got home later, I was still hungry, so I made a quick bowl of sliced mango (fair trade/organic from Peru- I’ve reduced imported fruit a LOT but these were on sale and so good) and local Cara Cara orange with (not local) cacao nibs, coconut, and more macadamia butter LOL.

fruit snack

dinner:

bowls!  I cooked local pintos in the crockpot with oregano, garlic, smoked paprika, onion, and liquid aminos.  Alongside, mixed quinoa and a slaw of local veggies: carrots, cabbage, cilantro, green onions with dressing of coconut yogurt, tamari, garlic, and lime.  California avocado on top.

bean Quinoa bowl

dessert:

this is a horrible photo; but I had a scoop of local bulk bought vegan chocolate sorbet from the Good Scoop with a homemade gf brownie.  Don’t ask me why it’s a recipe for CBD oil brownies lol- personally I don’t put that in (get down with it if you have some) but I love the fudginess of the recipe and that it’s gf/v.

Gluten free brownie and ice cream

FIN

a week of meals in march

Zero waste farmers market haul

A lot of the times I enjoy cooking off the top of my head, without restrictions and limitations of what I’d “planned” to eat that day.  Some weeks I feel like having a plan in place helps me to cruise through the week earlier and avoid that “what’s for dinner?” slump.  This week is definitely one of those weeks.  I underestimated what we would eat last week at the market, which didn’t help- I had to top off midway through the week at the grocery store (see evidence below) which entailed a few twist ties/plastic produce tags and stickers.  Also, having less prepared and ready to go in the fridge meant that I forgot my lunch one day and had to buy it out- which I don’t mind doing every once in a while, but it was pricey, and honestly I prefer my own home cooking?  I guess my palate has just gotten a lot simpler over the years and heavy oil use, salt, and seasoning just doesn’t taste as good to me anymore.

zero waste grocery haul

Reflecting on this week led me to creating a loose meal plan for this upcoming week. I’ll be making a few items on the weekend too as pantry supplements.  We are still working toward our goal of cutting down on recycling, especially spurred on by reading that in an adjacent county, 290 tons of recycling were dumped into a landfill, and that problem is nationwide as China is refusing our recycling.  Therefore, vegan mayo, mustard, and jam are on my list of things I’ve been DIY-ing, they don’t take long at all and the ingredients are better than store bought.

pantry:

strawberry chia jam:  we buy 3 baskets of strawberries at the market, half (any bruised, less ripe, otherwise undesirable fruit) go to jam and half go to fresh eating (I store in a mason jar in the fridge, unwashed and uncut).  This recipe is low sugar and has the added benefit of chia seeds.  The kids like it on their porridge or nut butter sammies.

almond milk:  my mom gave me a bunch of local almonds this week that were gifted to her by a farmer (grower? hmm).  So I’m making a double batch of almond milk- half for milk and half for yogurt. (1 cup almonds soaked overnight, drained and blended with 4 cups fresh water, a medjool date and a pinch of salt).

almond milk yogurt:  I haven’t tried this before but I’m excited to try as an alternative to my coconut yogurt.  It uses agar agar (seaweed) powder to thicken and I’ve found it in bulk.  I’ll let you know how it turns out and post the recipe

cashew ricotta:  good for spreading on sammies, a dollop on bowls, or on pizza/pasta.  Similar to this recipe but I sub a tablespoon of the water for EVOO for improved flavor, and I leave out the onion powder.

sunday:  tofu bánh mì + roasted or steamed broccoli.  We get great local tofu in bulk here.  You can find my recipe here.  I work Sunday afternoons/nights and don’t get home till late so my husband and the kids usually indulge their gluten appetites this night haha.

tofu Banh mi sandwich

monday:  these glory bowls.  I may replace the tofu (and all its cooking steps) with simple cooked beans.

happy healthy kitchen

image via happy healthy kitchen (linked above)

tuesday:  gf pasta + salad.  We have baby artichokes at our market, so I’m trying out this recipe (subbing the cashew ricotta for the mascarpone) and I’ll be simplifying the steps a lot.  If I enjoy it, I will post the simplified/veganized recipe.  I’ll pick up some bitter greens like arugula and toss them with a touch of lemon juice, olive oil and vegan parm.  Another easy favorite is tomato sauce simmered with lentils, roasted red onions and quartered mushrooms.  Spaghetti squash or zucchini noodles are great GF options, too.

wednesday:  burgers + fries.  toppings:  homemade mayo, pickled onions, avocado, arugula.

burger

thursday:  Joel and I both work late, so we just scrounge leftovers this night.  I’ll probably make extra burgers the night before and have them on a salad.

friday:  This is the day before the market, so it’s usually slim pickings- I find making a clean-out-the-fridge stir fry, soup, or salad is the best bet here and makes sure that I have a nice empty fridge to put new food into tomorrow.  In my experience, when I still have old food in the fridge and then put new food in with it, that’s where food waste can happen for us.  Also, I take everything out of the fridge and wipe it and the shelves down this night in preparation for new food, keeps things nice and fresh in the fridge and allows me to have a mental picture of what I need to buy at the store the next day.  More often than not, I do soup- either a red lentil soup or a seasonal minestrone, maybe bolstered with canned tomatoes and freezer stock.

chickpea minestra

saturday:  more often than not, we have neighbor kids over at our house saturday and what works well is PIZZA.  You can make the dough up to a week in advance, let it sit in the fridge and it just gets better.  Then all you have to do is pile on the toppings et voila, pizza.  I like sautéed mushrooms + when it comes out of the oven, dollops of cashew ricotta or this blender mozzarella sauce and a shower of arugula.  I make a socca (chickpea flour) base for myself and a gluten base for the kids.

pizza

staples we buy every week: organic rolled oats, chia, hemp, flax, walnuts, rice, potatoes, carrots, celery, onion/garlic, bread for kids, avocados, enough local fruit to snack on through the week, lemons, a hand of bananas, a bulk dried bean, a bulk dried grain, local olive oil (I usually buy once a month), parsley/cilantro, plenty of local greens and lots of fresh veg (whatever’s good at the market).  Almonds and/or coconut for milk and yogurt.  A salty snack for lunches like olives or pistachios.  A sweet snack like dried mango, chocolate covered almonds, dates, or dark chocolate.  Always on hand: miso, nutritional yeast, home canned tomatoes, mustard, tahini, tamari, vinegar, chili flakes, hot sauce, kraut and kimchi, sesame oil, kombu seaweed (for cooking beans and grains), sesame seeds, and nut butter.

also, as promised, here’s a few things I cooked this week:

amy Chaplin lentil soup

lemony red lentil soup (linked above) with curly kale.  I had it with a scoop of local brown rice, the kids and Joel had local baguette.

bowls beet avocado quinoa

quinoa bowls with massaged kale (used leftover dressing from this post), steamed beets, avocado, garlic quinoa, and tofu cooked with coconut aminos and garlic.

Peanut noodles

this is a terrible photo, sorry but sometimes it’s hard to get a good pic when it’s getting dark.  Anyways, this was gf noodles with peanut sauce and sautéed cabbage, carrots and bok choy + cilantro, green onion, toasted cashews.

pasta nooch broccoli

this was gf Banza chickpea flour pasta (has a plastic window on the box unfortunately, my grandma bought this by accident and didn’t like it lol), cooked and drained and then stirred vigorously right in the pot with a little of the cooking water, nutritional yeast, crushed garlic, white miso, lemon juice + zest and a bit of olive oil.  Alongside, broccoli tossed with a bit of olive oil, roasted with salt, pepper, and chili flakes.  The kids obsess over it this way cause the leaves get crispy like a chip.

I also made brownies, chocolate chip oatmeal cookies, mayo, a simple fennel/celery/tangerine salad, and a big pot of minestrone which I didn’t photograph.

Enjoy your weekend xx

 

 

what I ate today: v/gf

Hi friends!  Here’s another example of a day’s worth of intuitive eating for me, gluten free, vegan, unprocessed whole foods, and mostly local/seasonal.  Keep in mind that what I eat varies from day to day, season to season, and what’s right for me may not be right for you.  With these “what I ate” style posts, I simply hope to share what works for me and inspire you to eat more simply, more in tune with your body.  Intuitive eating has been such a revelation for me, learning to tune in to my own body and trusting it, instead of tuning outwards to trends, “influencers”, books, etc.  I’ve been practicing it maybe a year or two now and the effects have been profound, and goes hand in hand with self love.

ready?  Heres what I ate and did today on a full day off.  To see more examples of what I, my husband, and kids eat, click here.

7 am: wake up and drink water.  

I always drink a quart jar worth of water in the morning, warm.  I find that cold water feels jarring to my body/my digestion and I almost never drink it.  I fill it halfway with cool water and halfway with hot water from my kettle.  Often I’ll add ginger slices or lemon/lime, but today I just felt like pure water.  Then I made my daughter’s lunch for school while my husband made them breakfast.

Water zero waste

8 am: meditation + gua sha

Carmela left for school and I sat and meditated with my husband for maybe 10 minutes while Vin played LEGOS.  After, I put on this golden elixir oil from CocoKind and did a lymphatic drainage practice called gua shaan ancient Chinese massage technique where you “scrape” smooth jade or rose quartz blades over the skin, releasing the fascia and facilitating drainage.  My face can get really puffy and this helps so much.  It brings so much circulation to the skin and adds that glowiness.  Plus, in my experience, it helps any breakouts that may be coming up to go away fast.  This one is similar to a set I have.

Gua sha

8:15 am:  herbal infusion

I started drinking my herbal infusion from the night before: nettles, ashwagandha, and spearmint steeped overnight in hot water.  Strained and diluted the next day, I drink it throughout the morning for minerals and plant medicine.  I switch the herbs up depending on what I’m feeling that I need.

9:30 am:  more infusion + a mango

I drank the rest of my herbal infusion and ate some mango Joel cut for me while I was getting some work done on the computer.  I usually don’t eat breakfast till later than many people, it makes me feel nauseated to eat early, since I was a child!

Nettle infusion spearmint ashwagandha

11 am: workout + smoothie bowl

I did this quick but effective workout and then made a fast smoothie bowl.  I’ve been craving a smoothie bowl and then my mom gifted me some of her stash of frozen garden razzies which are HEAVEN.  Serious candy.  I blended 4 frozen bananas, frozen razzies, vanilla extract, and a splash of homemade coconut milk together until smooth and creamy.  I topped with hemp seeds, more razzies and rawnola I had in the fridge (I used dates, coconut, almond meal and walnuts this time).  This was super filling which was perfect after my strong workout and tiny breakfast.

Smoothie bowl raspberry rawnola banana

2-3 pm: kombucha + strawberries

We ran some errands, picked up a few groceries and then headed to the park by our Wednesday night farmers market.  At my coop I picked up a watermelon basil kombucha (local and on draft) in my mason jar.  I drank that while Joel and I talked and the kids played.

kombucha watermelon zero waste

Then I walked over to the market and found some beautiful spring goodies, including strawberries.  We ate the whole basket.

Farmers market zero waste California

I picked up also a super dark lettuce, sugar snap peas, Cara Cara oranges, baby potatoes, and cilantro- all local, all organic.  I chatted with my farmer friends, who all told me they are desperately hoping for rain soon.  We’ve been so dry here in California this year.  Then we headed to the library to pick up books and a few movies (we canceled our Netflix last summer and it has been THE BEST).

4 pm: sugar snap peas

On the way back home from the library, I drank a quart of water and snacked on some of the sugar snap peas.

Sugar snap peas zero waste

5 pm: rainbow dinner

Joel made himself + the kids a pad thai style dish.  I was craving more veggies and no grains, so I steamed the potatoes I got from the market, a whole zucchini (preserves nutrients) until almost soft, then added in a handful of mushrooms, steamed another minute, and added in tofu and broccoli for the last few minutes).  I cut up half of the zuch and tossed it in the blender with 1 raw carrot, a scoop of white miso, spoon of nutritional yeast, a few cherry tomatoes, clove of garlic, juice from a meyer lemon, and a spoonful of peanut butter.  No recipe, I just made it up as I went and it was delicious.  In my giant bowl, I added the steamed veggies/tofu, avocado, the chopped up head of farmers market lettuce, some sugar snap peas, some tomatoes, pickled onions, and sauerkraut.  Then drizzled the dressing over.  It was so good, all the textures, flavors, colors…plants are medicine.

whole food vegan dinner bowl grain free

7:30 bedtime tonic

Most nights I have a grounding tonic to get ready for bed.  Tonight I did a bit of coconut butter blended with water, Vitamineral Earth, cocoa powder, vanilla, and a gooey medjool date.  So good and so warming.

vegan night tonic

Thanks so much for reading!  Lots of love and I hope you enjoyed xx