Mom, IKEA and the Pittsfield Farmer’s Market this weekend

Well we did it! What started out as an ordinary yet insane day closed with pizza, beer, good friends and MOM in my backyard….AND the unloading of about 2000 lbs of kitchen cabinets!

I guess an explanation is needed here for those of you who don’t know me. First a photo from the Stoughton IKEA store where my daughter Kristen, my dear friend (I think we are still friends) Helen and I had just loaded the 2000lbs of kitchen cabinets into my car and Kristen’s SUV…notice we are all smiling still!

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Ok…let me give you the context of this insanity… so we had driven 3 hours prior to this photo and got up at dawn so I could be the first person at the IKEA kitchen design center this morning to purchase my future kitchen which by the way my dear mom made possible…Thanks mom hope you know how much I love and miss you!

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Sooo…after loading our cars (with the help of a very strong…very young man who then disappeared as if by magic)… we began the the 3 hour drive home (it took longer due to the weekend travelers all returning home at the same time we were)…

En route home I was running the whole scene of how, upon arriving at my house we would unload the cars, walk the dogs, eat and survive it all…it was clear we three could not do it…so I began to panic…a little.

Then after several truly crazy moments on my part which I choose not to share here a bit of magic occurred. There were suddenly 2 strong men related to Kristen and Helen waiting at my house to help unload the 2000lbs of cabinets…another dear friend Donna had purchased beer and was on her way to my house to take care of my crazy dogs…and 2 large pizzas had been ordered to arrive right after the cabinets were safely in my basement. AMAZING I thought simply amazing.

AND yesterday all the women mentioned in this blog including my mom who is always present in my life were at the Pittsfield Farmer’s Market sharing whole foods and in particular “ALL THINGS BEANS”

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We had lots of fun at the market as we do every time we participate or visit. I want to share this recipe with you which continues to make me smile…

Chocolate Adzuki Bean Balls:

Chocolate Adzuki Bites (Vegan, Gluten Free, Sugar Free, Soy Free)

Ingredients:

For the adzuki balls:

  • 1/2 cup dried adzuki beans
  • 3/4  cup pecans
  • 6 or so pitted medjool dates (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1/4 cup cocoa
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp maple syrup (optional)
  • 1-2 teaspoons rice milk (optional)

For the topping:

You can choose either shredded coconut, chopped pecans or chopped cashews. You’ll need about a cup of whichever one you choose. For the nuts, I recommend blending them in the food processor before you make the balls because then you don’t have to clean it out.

  • 1 cup of selected topping
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt (the larger flakey kind if possible)

Directions:

Put the adzuki beans in a small pot and cover with a couple inches of water. Boil for about an hour, making sure you don’t let them dry out, until they are soft. Drain and set aside.

In a food processor or blender, blend the nuts for your topping (if using) and set aside. Add 3/4 cup cooked adzuki beans (they will have swollen up so your 1/2 cup should have turned into at least 3/4 cup), 3/4 cup pecans, dates, cocoa powder, vanilla, and salt. Blend until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl if necessary. If it is too dry to blend well, you can add rice or almond milk a teaspoon at a time to add moisture. You can also add a teaspoon of maple syrup to make it a little sweeter (if you use the maple syrup you probably won’t need the rice milk)

Scoop out the dough a tablespoon or so at a time and roll into balls. Sprinkle them with just a bit of the sea salt and then roll the balls in the topping until they are coated then put them in the fridge for about an hour to firm up.

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I must admit that I am beyond tired so will sign off for this week…more to come.

I’d like to end with gratitude for my family and friends, for this glorious life I have been given and for the hope of more to come. I am truly blessed and know this each day I wake to greet the sun!

Peace and Brightest Blessings Dear Ones!

Pistachio Chocolate Mousse

Love,Eric  Sanae

Here’s the recipe:

24 ounces of silken firm tofu, well drained.

½ cup maple sugar

1 pinch sea salt

½ cup soy milk (unsweetened)

9 ounces grain-sweetened chocolate chips – semi sweet also works

½ cup ground pistachios

Combine maple sugar, tofu and sea salt in a food processor and process for approximately 5 minutes until creamy.

Combine soy milk and chocolate chips in a saucepan, heat at medium. Stir constantly until the chocolate has melted than transfer to the food processor.

Add vanilla extract and continue to blend for a few minutes.

Add ½ cup pistachios and process until well combined.

Transfer mixture to glass or ceramic container and chill for a few hours.

Serve in individual serving bowls topped with crushed pistachios.

YUMMY!

Orange Pan Glazed Tempeh

This dish has become one of my favorite tempeh recipes and it can be made in only 30 minutes…how’s that for fitting into a busy life? I added roasted kabocha squash, steamed kale and good old short grain brown rice. The pickle is “Crimson Kraut” a mild Kimchi made by Hosta Hill.  Hosta Hill also made the tempeh I used for this recipe. Learn more about them at this link

http://hostahill.com/tempeh/

So here is the recipe for Orange Pan Glazed Tempeh:

1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice

1 Tablespoon freshly grated ginger

2 Teaspoons tamari (or shoyu)

1 ½ Tablespoon mirin

2 Teaspoons maple syrup

½ Teaspoon ground coriander

2 small cloves garlic, crushed

10 ounces tempeh (or extra firm tofu)

2 Tablespoons olive oil (use light as extra virgin will smoke)

½ lime

Optional – cilantro

1)      Squeeze juice and place it in a small bowl.

2)      Grate the ginger over the bowl making sure to add the juice.

3)      Mix together the tamari, mirin, maple syrup, ground coriander and garlic. Set aside this mixture.

4)      Cut the tempeh (or tofu) into bite size pieces (if working with tofu, pat dry and then cut up)

5)      Heat the olive oil over medium heat until hot but not smoking.

6)      Add the tempeh and sautee for about 5 minutes on each side until golden brown.

7)      Pout the orange juice over the tempeh and continue cooking for another 5-7 minutes until the sauce has reduced to a nice glaze.

8)      Make sure to turn the tempeh while the sauce reduces to prevent sticking.

9)      Serve the tempeh with grain side dish. Drizzle the remaining tamari sauce mixture over the top.

10)  Add lime juice and cilantro if desired.

Applesauce Corn Muffins

Try these applesauce corn muffins…they are sure to put a smile on you face!

1 cup organic corm meal

1 cup brown rice (for gluten free) or whole wheat pastry flour

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp sea salt

1 cup unsweetened applesauce

1 cup soy, almond or rice milk

1/4 maple syrup

4 Tbls Safflower oil

Mix dry ingredients together then add applesauce, milk of choice and oil. Mix well and then divide into 12-14 muffin cups. Bake at 325 for 15-20 minutes or when a toothpick inserted into muffin comes out clean.

ENJOY!

Banana Burritos

Best to use all organic foods whenever possible

1 medium banana
1 flour tortilla – you can find rice tortillas for children with gluten sensitivity/allergies
2 tablespoons nut butter – I make my own almond butter which is the favorite at my house
1 teaspoon mixture of pure maple sugar and cinnamon
1 tablespoon raisins
1 teaspoon chopped nuts

Spread the nut butter all over the tortilla. Place the banana on one edge of the tortilla. Sprinkle the maple sugar/cinnamon mixture and chopped nuts over tortilla and roll up. Some of you may also want to top this off with some tofu whip or whipped cream! Trust me they will love making these and eating them… AND they could grow up to be as silly as my children did (see photo of Patrick’s graduation party below)

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Rice Krispy Treats

3 cups toasted brown rice cereal (Barbaras or Erewhan)
1 cup brown rice syrup
½ cup almonds, peanut butter or Tahini
1 tsp sweet miso

Variations:
½ cup golden raisins
Roll balls in chopped toasted nuts

1) Combined rice syrup, nut butter and sweet miso in small pot. Heat on low flame until well blended.
2) Pour over rice cereal and mix well.
3) Roll into 1” bals or press firmly into 8” x 8” glass dish. Let sit until cool.

The balls are very sticky so it is wise to drop spoonfuls of mixture onto parchment paper and allow to cool a bit before trying to roll into balls.

Give this recipe a try and make it with your children it will be a blast!