A Pause for the Flu

Summerfield Delight | Garden 2015 Sneak Peek

Ugh. I am so annoyed I have to write this blurb. I have had a nice 3-4 day stint of the flu and it's pushing my editorial calendar out of whack. What was supposed to be my recipe writing day (Monday) and also the day I photographed my two new diy posts, ended up being day one of this stupid flu. 

So the great content and amazing recipes and fun I have scheduled will have to be put on pause, because they haven't been transcribed to the screen yet. They are written in notebooks, photographed, edited, but not formatted. 

Till then you can enjoy this lovely photo from my mother's garden, more of which you will see in the near future when I have more energy or non-dizziness. The light was perfect that night and you will enjoy these photos, so stay tuned for goodness post flu :)

 

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Meg Sheeley

Hi everyone, I'm Meg. As a full time graphic designer, sometimes finding the time to be creative and eat well can be difficult. Join me on my adventure of living in a small apartment, finding room to sew/design/create while staying healthy and eating without breaking the bank. You might find my co-conspiritor Mabel the cat join me in some of my stories. A curious ocicat she enjoys being involved in most activities, and will snatch arugala out of your hand.

Baked Tofu Lettuce Wraps

Summerfield Delight | Baked Tofu Lettuce Wraps

Lettuce wraps are the key to easy asian inspired foods on a hot night, or as an easy lunch. The light flavors are lovely as an app with friends and can be piled high with any veggies you like. You could also use radish, red pepper, cilantro, carrot, cabbage etc. Get creative.

I love that these are easy to bring for lunch. Salads can get ridiculously boring, this is basically a salad in a creative form. I suggest bringing the tofu to room temp, it's odd cold and doesn't heat well in the micro.

Take a look at the Baked Tofu Recipe HERE.

Also note: there is "ginger juice" in this recipe. You can juice your own, or find a jar in the grocery store. This is the brand I bought here. 


Baked Tofu Lettuce Wraps


INGREDIENTS

  • Lettuce - little gem or bib is best
  • Baked Tofu "fries"
  • 1/4 Red Onion
  • handful Sprouts
  • 1/2 Cucumber
  • 3-4 mint leaves
  • juice of 1 Lemon 
  • 1/2 tsp Peanut Butter
  • 1 tbs Sriracha
  • 1/2 tsp Ginger Juice

INSTRUCTIONS

Start by making your sauce. Combine 1 tbs sriracha, 1/2 teaspoon peanut butter, juice of a lemon, 2 tsp ginger juice. Combine and adjust to your taste. 

Lay out your lettuce hearts and place 3-4 tofu fries on each. Then Add slices of red onion, cucumber and chopped mint. Add sprouts and sauce over each. Wrap up and enjoy with a little bowl of sauce on the side in case you want more deliciousness.

Comment

Meg Sheeley

Hi everyone, I'm Meg. As a full time graphic designer, sometimes finding the time to be creative and eat well can be difficult. Join me on my adventure of living in a small apartment, finding room to sew/design/create while staying healthy and eating without breaking the bank. You might find my co-conspiritor Mabel the cat join me in some of my stories. A curious ocicat she enjoys being involved in most activities, and will snatch arugala out of your hand.

Spicy Marinated Baked Tofu

Summerfield Delight | Spicy Marinated Baked Tofu

I love these little nuggets of tofu because with a little planning and not much work, you have some pretty darn good tofu, I use them as little dipping fries, in fried rice, or my favorite a nice light lettuce wrap. That's where these guys are headed. Lettuce wraps are such a nice refreshing dinner on a hot night. 

Happy Memorial Day to those in the USA. These lovely baked tofu pieces and their corresponding recipe for lettuce wraps, is sure to be a summer hit for your guests and family.

Note on tofu. It gets a bad rep because of the GMOs and processing. Trader Joe's offers a nice sprouted organic tofu, and there are similar offerings at Whole Foods that don't break the budget. 


SPICY MARINATED BAKED TOFU


INGREDIENTS

  • 1 package tofu
  • 4 tbs sriracha
  • 2 tbs tamari
  • 1 inch ginger chopped
  • 1 clove garlic chopped
  • 1 tbs honey
  • juice of a lime
  • 1/4 cup vegetable broth
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika

INSTRUCTIONS

Cut the tofu in slices to create flat sheets. Place paper towel below and above on a flat platter and place a second flat platter on top. Let sit to squeeze out any tofu water without damaging the shape of the slices. Once sliced cut into "fries" like seen above. 

In a plastic ziplock bag place tofu, Sriracha, tamari, ginger, garlic, honey and lime juice and seal tigthly. Place in the refrigerator for 4-24 hours. I will usually marinate in the am before work to cook for dinner. 

When ready to cook preheat oven to 375F and prep your baking sheet with aluminum or baking parchment. Dab your tofu fries so they aren't dripping as you place them on the sheet. Sprinkle with salt, white pepper and paprika before placing in oven. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until crispy on the outside and not too dry on the inside. 

You can toast these in the oven to reheat. Micro is not suggested. 

Comment

Meg Sheeley

Hi everyone, I'm Meg. As a full time graphic designer, sometimes finding the time to be creative and eat well can be difficult. Join me on my adventure of living in a small apartment, finding room to sew/design/create while staying healthy and eating without breaking the bank. You might find my co-conspiritor Mabel the cat join me in some of my stories. A curious ocicat she enjoys being involved in most activities, and will snatch arugala out of your hand.

Raspberry Beer Shandy

Summerfield Delight | Raspberry Beer Shandy

Beer shandy's shouldn't come in a bottle or can. They are too easy to create on your own, and much much better. Beer cocktails are showing up more and more places in the US, something seen mostly in the UK before. Snakebites, and other "girlie" versions beer cocktails create a refreshing drink that adds layers of flavor.

This one here uses a simple ale, I used Peak Organic Summer Ale, for the brightness and relatively hoppy flavor for a refreshing summer beer. I like that it still shines through without being overwhelming. You can use any beer, but remember with quality comes flavor. If you want it to taste good, use a good quality beer. 

The liqueur added in this shandy is almost NOT a liqueur in that it is not very sweet. Another AITA concoction, Rhubarb is a lovely blend of Rhubarb, Beet, Cardamom and other spices, that come together to create this lovely spicy and yet earthy blend of flavors. I highly suggest you pick it up if you see it at your local liquor store, or any of their four varieties Snap, Root, Rhubarb or Sage. You can find the Snappy Pear Cider Cocktail HERE featuring SNAP.

Making Fresh Raspberry Juice for Raspberry Shandies

Also things to note, I love the Belvoir offerings of sparkling lemonade, for the addition of elderflower. If you don't have the option to use Belvoir (some WFs do carry it), but still want the elderflower in there, add a teaspoon or two of elderflower syrup the alcoholic kind (St. Germain) or non, whatever you have around.

If you have never made raspberry juice before, you are going to ask yourself WHY you haven't previously once you taste a cocktail with fresh juice. Keep the extra to make a reduction for your morning yogurt (had it this morning and it was amazing) or add some sparkling soda water for a low calorie fruit drink for a hot day. The extra you make won't last long, you will find a reason to use it.

Raspberry Sparkling Lemonade Shandy Cocktail with Rhubarb by AITA and Belvoir Elderflower Sparkling Lemonade

RASPBERRY BEER SHANDY

makes two cocktails


INGREDIENTS

  • 1 bottle of beer
  • 1/2 cup sparkling lemonade 
  • 2 oz Rhubarb by AITA
  • 1/2 pint of raspberries (makes extra) 

INSTRUCTIONS

The first thing is to make your raspberry juice. If you want to only make enough juice for two shandy cocktails, just use 1/3 of the 1/2 pint package of raspberries. I like to use it on other things, so I make more. 

Place a metal strainer over a bowl and use a spatula to smash the raspberries and let the juice run through until there is not more juice running when you squeeze the pulp. 

Fill your glass with beer, or use 1-2 large ice cubes. Pour your beer in your glasses, half in each glass, and then top off with 1/4 cup of sparkling lemonade each. Sparkling is better here unless you want to reduce the carbonation. I like to keep it fizzy. 

Add 1oz of Rhubarb to each glass, and then top with raspberry juice. Give it a little stir, and serve with lemon wedge. Enjoy!

Comment

Meg Sheeley

Hi everyone, I'm Meg. As a full time graphic designer, sometimes finding the time to be creative and eat well can be difficult. Join me on my adventure of living in a small apartment, finding room to sew/design/create while staying healthy and eating without breaking the bank. You might find my co-conspiritor Mabel the cat join me in some of my stories. A curious ocicat she enjoys being involved in most activities, and will snatch arugala out of your hand.

Easy Veggie Puff Tarts

Summerfield Delight | Easy Veggie Puff Tarts

Don't these look delicious? Yeah this is the type of easy meal you can pull together with leftovers and some frozen puff pastry that makes any guest or even  your mom proud when she SURPRISE shows up at your apartment.

Basic concept. Pastry + Cheese + Topping + Tossed Greens on top = perfection. 

Let's get down to business. The best frozen puff pastry I have found is the DUFOUR brand, I use the regular "classic - all butter".  So vegans, this one doesn't work for you. You need to let it defrost in the fridge for 2-3 hours before using it, but honestly, it has never taken me that long.  I like to try a few different combos of veggies and (technically) fruit, with cherry tomatoes. This variety was made with lima tomatoes and a dubliner cheese that I received in a lovely birthday gift basket, as well as a version with formage blanc from Nettle Meadow Farms

Easy Asparagus Puff Pastry Tarts
Easy Veggie Puff Pastry Tarts
Easy Puff Pastry Tarts for Guests
Easy Puff Pastry Tarts for Parties

EASY PUFF PASTRY TARTS

makes 3 small tarts perfect for one dinner or apps for 3


INGREDIENTS

  • 1/3 of a box of frozen dufour puff pastry
  • handful zima tomatoes
  • 1-2 oz dubliner cheese
  • 1 oz formage blanc
  • 6 asparagus tops
  • sprouts or light greens
  • evoo + lemon juice

 

INSTRUCTIONS

Preheat your oven to 400F.

Start with a defrosted 1/3  of the puff pastry sheet. Sprinkle a little flour on your countertop (preferably stone - keeps it cold) and roll out a few times to get a rectangle. Cut in three pieces. With a pairing knife draw a rectangle 1/2-3/4 of an inch from the edge of each piece of pastry. This is your "border" or "crust". Then with a fork or with your pairing knife poke holes throughout your tart to ensure that the center does not rise as much as the edges.

Place your three tarts on a baking sheet, I use paper on mine so it's easily removed from the sheet, if you are going to skip the paper, spray the pan!

Bake the tarts for around 8 minutes until slightly golden and can hold a shape. During these 8 minutes you will want to prep your veggies. I prefer my tomatoes cut in half, so prep those, clean your asparagus and shred your cheese if necessary. Once out of the oven sprinkle or spread your cheese over the center of the tart, and place you veggies right on top. Try to alternate the direction of your asparagus not only for looks, but to keep the texture consistency. 

Place the tarts back in the oven for 10-15 more minutes until your veggies and cheese are melted and cooked together. The asparagus takes longer to cook than tomatoes, but the dubliner is slower to melt than the formage blanc. The timing is going to vary with the thickness of your pastry, your weird oven quirks as well as how close your baking sheet is to the heat in  your oven. 

Once done, let cool for a few minutes, and toss your sprouts in just a teaspoon of evoo and lemon juice. It's better for these to be UNDERDRESSED for the pastry party, rather than sopping. 

If serving to a few guests, cut in fours and serve pretending you slaved away in the kitchen to produce these oh so decadent hors d'ouvres.

2 Comments

Meg Sheeley

Hi everyone, I'm Meg. As a full time graphic designer, sometimes finding the time to be creative and eat well can be difficult. Join me on my adventure of living in a small apartment, finding room to sew/design/create while staying healthy and eating without breaking the bank. You might find my co-conspiritor Mabel the cat join me in some of my stories. A curious ocicat she enjoys being involved in most activities, and will snatch arugala out of your hand.