Spicy Thai Peanut Noodle Salad

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So, today's recipe is seriously one of the easiest, tastiest things to make! I have certainly made many Asian noodle salads in my day but I think this one is one of my favourites. The peanuts, spicy jalapeño, and cilantro are the perfect combination for a quick and easy dinner.

The best thing is that everything (except the pasta) can be prepped in advance so if you want to get dinner on the table in less than 10 minutes it’s totally a possibility. Just cook up your pasta and throw it all together and your set.

Do you guys have a favourite place to get a Thai Noodle Salad? Back in the day, I use to love the one that they had at Original Joe’s - possibly because it also came with a piece of banana bread. Random, I know, but one you have it you get it! They use to also had a really great one at Earls, but sadly I missed it.

So next time you need a super quick go-to meal make this salad it! You will love just how fast it comes together, but even better than that you will love just how delicious it tastes!

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prep time 20 minutes

cook time 6 - 8 minutes

total time 28 minutes

servings 4

Ingredients

1 orange

2 cloves of garlic

1 inch piece of ginger

1/4 cup peanut butter

2 tbsp soya sauce

3 tbsp sesame oil

1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

1/2 tsp salt

1 lemon

3 cups shredded cabbage

1 red pepper

1/2 - 1 jalapeno

3 green onions

1 cup cilantro

1/2 box angel hair pasta

1/2 cup peanuts

Instructions

In a food processor or blender add the juice of the orange, peeled garlic and ginger, peanut butter, soya sauce, sesame oil, red pepper flakes, salt and the juice of the lemon. Blend to until smooth and fully combined.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil then cook pasta according to package. Drain then rinse under cold water.

In a large bowl combine pasta, shredded cabbage, thinly sliced red pepper, finely chopped jalapeños, chopped green onions and cilantro. Pour the sauce over then toss to combine. Sprinkle with peanuts and serve immediately.

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Greek Marinaded Grilled Vegetable

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So let’s talk about marinaded vegetables, or perhaps, how it isn’t really possible to marinade raw vegetables. I mean really, no matter how long you soak that pepper or onion in yummy flavours it’s not really going to take on any of that deliciousness.

So, while I’m calling this recipe marinaded vegetables it’s really more of a grilled vegetable salad. All of these yummy flavours envelope the grilled vegetables making it the perfect combination of charred deliciousness, tart lemon, and earthy oregano. It's the ultimate greek combination!

The other great thing about his recipe is that you can use basically any vegetables that you love, this would be great with eggplant, asparagus, or why not even some baby broccolini. Basically, anything you have available to grill will be enhanced by these flavours.

So the question is what are you going to grill to go along with this? Fish? Chicken? Or if you’re as lucky as I am and end up with leftovers these are delicious on a beautiful grilled pizza - I mean seriously, these are leftovers you want leftover!

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prep time 12 minutes

cook time 8 minutes

total time 20 minutes

servings 4 - 6

Ingredients

1 green or red pepper

1 white onion

1 zucchini (or a bag of mini zucchini)

2 cups small tomatoes

2 cups white mushrooms

1/2 cup olive oil

5 cloves of garlic

1/4 cup lemon juice

2 tsp white sugar

1/2 tsp oregano

1/2 tsp thyme

1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

salt + pepper

Instructions

To prepare your vegetables slice into bit sized pieces and place in a large bowl. Pour 1/4 cup of olive oil, 3 of the cloves of garlic that have been finely chopped then season liberally with salt + pepper. Toss well then skewer onto pre-soaked wooden skewers with like vegetables together.

Grill for 5-8 minutes depending on the vegetables, flipping often. Remove from the grill then carefully take each vegetable off of the skewers.

In a small bowl combine remaining olive oil, lemon juice, remaining garlic cloves, sugar, oregano, thyme, red pepper flakes and salt + pepper.

In a large bowl place grilled vegetables and dressing. Toss well to combine then serve immediately.

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Pink Power Smoothie

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We all know that there is only one thing that gets a smoothie this pink right - beets! Now, love them or hate them, they are might pretty.

Growing up beets were a staple in our house, though they were mainly used in borsch - which I hated. So needless to say it wasn’t one of those ingredients that I was drawn to when I first started doing my own grocery shopping, that is until I had roasted beets. They are so sweet yet full of earthy flavour, I was instantly hooked.

Now speaking of borsch - have you guys tried it? I am disappointed in myself to admit that I haven't had it since I was a kid, soooo, perhaps the time has come and that needs to be my next beet adventure. I mean it does have everything in it that I love, so in theory, it should be the perfect meal for me.

But getting back to this show-stopping smoothie. I mean can you imagine giving this to your significant-other first thing in the morning? It sure beats the classic unfortunate green colour that so many smoothies end up being. But the one thing you need to know with this smoothie - it tastes like beets. So if you are expecting a smoothie that just looks like beets and doesn’t taste like them, this one isn’t for you. I also highly recommend prepping your beets in advance so your not waiting 30 minutes before you can blend up your smoothie.

So if you are looking for a way to make your morning's more beautiful blend this up - because how can you not smile when you drinking something that looks like this!

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prep time 10 minutes

cook time 30 minutes

total time 40 minutes

servings 2

Ingredients

1 large beet

1 frozen banana

1 cup fresh or frozen pineapple

splash of vanilla

1 tbsp honey

1/2 cup coconut milk

Ice - optional

Instructions

Preheat oven to 400. Cut and peel your beet then wrap in tinfoil. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until fork tender. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

In a high powdered blender place frozen banana, pineapple, vanilla, honey coconut milk and cooled beet. Blend on high speed for 1-2 minutes or until smooth (ice can be added in at this step as well if desired).

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Cucumber Sesame Salad

Light and refreshing - the perfect summer salad!

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So I need to start off by saying today’s recipe is soooo easy - but isn’t that how cooking should be in the summer. Growing up we always had cucumber’s and cream and it was so delicious, but, since dairy is semi-off limits in our house it’s not a side that I tend to make.

So while this salad has different flavours, the style is reminiscent of the salad of my childhood, so it does the trick. I love to serve this alongside basically anything you have barbequed, a beautiful piece of salmon with Asian spices, grilled chicken, or even a burger. The best part is that you can make it up to 24 hours in advance. I mean really, the earlier the better because it gives your cucumbers time to soak up all the wonderful flavours of the sesame oil, soy sauce and red pepper flakes.

Now, if you don’t like things spicy you can certainly skip the red pepper flakes, but I think that they add a nice little kick. So slice up your cucumbers super thin, julienne some carrots and you are set - it’s so easy I almost feel guilty calling it a recipe. But if you are anything like me you know that simple is best, and sometimes, no one even needs to know you threw it all together in minutes!

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prep time 15 minutes

marinading time 2 - 24 hours

total time 15 minutes + marinading time

servings 4

Ingredients

1 large English cucumber

1 large carrot

1 tbsp peanut oil

2 tbsp rice vinegar

1 tsp sesame oil

2 tsp honey

2 tsp soya sauce

1 tbsp sesame seeds

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

Instructions

In a medium bowl place thinly sliced cucumber and julienned carrots then set aside.

In a small bowl combine peanut oil, rice vinegar, sesame oil, honey, soya sauce, sesame seeds and red pepper flakes.

Pour the dressing over cucumber and allow to marinade for 2 - 24 hours.

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Vegan Caramel Corn

Vegan Caramel Corn - it’s crispy, sweet, has a tiny undertone of coconut. The perfect snack for your next movie night!!!

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Caramel made with coconut milk - until recently I didn’t know this was possible! But I guess as long as you have sugar and fat you can make caramel out of just about anything.

So this was one of those experiments that went better than I ever could have imagined. I mean I don't know about you but most of the time trial runs don't work out perfectly on the first try but this one sure did. The only thing about this caramel is that it does take some time, but even though it’s time-consuming it’s easy. You literally only need to stir every once in a while and it comes together all on its own. This caramel would also be delicious on so many things - apples, ice cream really anything you would put traditional caramel. The only thing you will want to do is leave out the baking soda and either serve immediately or place in a jar in the refrigerator.

This popcorn is crispy, sweet, has a tiny undertone of coconut which is delicious. It also makes a lot - 16 cups to be exact which seems like it will last forever yet somehow we devoured half of it in just one night.

This would also be a fun addition to a BBQ which you just need a little snack or your next movie night. And while I am in no way going to claim it’s healthy it is vegan, so if you have vegan friends, friends refraining from dairy, or you just like to switch things up once in a while you have the perfect new treat.

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prep time 10 minutes

cook time 1 hour 10 minutes

total time 1 hour 20 minutes

servings 16 cups

Ingredients

1 can full fat coconut milk

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 tsp sea salt

1 tsp coconut oil

1 tsp vanilla

1/4 tsp baking soda

16 cups pop corn

Instructions

In a large bowl place 16 cups of popped popcorn and set aside.

In a medium-sized pot add in coconut milk, brown sugar and sea salt and whisk to combine. Bring to a boil whisking constantly then low the temperature keeping at a light simmer.

Simmer for 30-40 minutes stirring occasionally until sauce thickens and coats the back of a spoon.

Once the sauce has darkened and thickened remove from heat and add in coconut oil, vanilla and baking soda and whisk to combine. Pour caramel over the popcorn and stir until evenly coated. Pour onto a large baking sheet and bake in the oven for 30 minutes stirring half way.

Break into small pieces and store in an airtight container.

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