Herbaceous Babe is going to be a little less regular in the days to come as the author gets launched in her professional career. Keep checking back, because there's no telling when a new post will appear!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Eggplant Pizza Bites

*This post is labeled as raw because the original recipe is raw. However, I baked mine. (400 for 20 min, I think... I need to learn to write these things down!) It can also be made nut-free if you use a different cheese!

Pizza's the hardest. The hardest to give up. The hardest to resist. The most tedious to find an alternative. I've tinkered with homemade gluten-free crusts, indulged in the store-bought versions, and hunted madly for various methods to make America's favourite meal more accessible.

After all my research, I've concluded that vegans are some of the most creative people on the planet. It seems like they make pizza out of almost anything. There's quinoa crust, cauliflower crustalmond-flax crust (which I wrote about in September), and countless others. (These three happen to all be raw/dehydrated, but cooked versions like this quinoa or this sweet potato do exist.) Then there are the pizza-stuffed veggies such as the portobello (which I wrote about in January) and the potato.

Overwhelmed yet? Sorry about that.

But by far, the "Practical Choice" award goes to the Eggplant. It's cheap, healthy, simple, and satisfying. While I can easily devour 1-1/2 fully-loaded pizzas on an Udi's crust, six or eight 3" rounds of eggplant left my belly feeling snug as a bug. The only down-side is that cooked eggplant is a little soft to be eating with your hands, but hey, there are worse things. Like living without pizza.

Bon appetit!

PS: My roommate just made the most amazing, mind-blowing beverage EVER: cranberry juice, grapefruit, hibiscus, Twinings' Orange Cinnamon Spice tea, and ice. Not too tart, not too sweet. Kind of reminds me of a mullet: "business in the front, party in the back."

Monday, March 18, 2013

Veggie Noodles in Orange-Tahini Dressing

A friend asked me yesterday if I knew any recipes that used tahini. Julie, this one's for you.

Looking for a simple, refreshing raw recipe? Well, here you go. Julienne some zucchini and carrot and covere in a zingy mixture of one part tahini, one part lemon juice, and two parts orange juice, top with avocado and a few choice herbs, and voilà! Dinner is served, compliments of

Or if you're in the mood for something a little more "gourmet" and have a bit of energy, check out Russell James' Tomato and Macadamia Mozzarella Linguine. I haven't tried this one yet, but it looks crazy-amazing (even if it does call for parsnip).

Monday, March 11, 2013

Taco Salad

I'm sure you've had those days - when the last thing you want to do is create a complex and labour-intensive dinner that will be gone in less than 15 minutes. Everybody needs an easy back-up plan for such days. For me, it's taco salad.

Seriously, the hardest part is heating the veg refried beans. (Lately, I've been buying the cans. If you prefer to make your own in the crock pot, check out this tried-and-true recipe from Little House of Veggies.) Then all you have to do is chop a few vegetables.

Pictured: refried beans, spinach, tomato, jalapeños, onion, and salsa. On days with a little more energy, consider serving with your favourite guacamole and/or vegan sour cream.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Vanilla Pear Fruit Leather

Aren't they beautiful? I meant to get a picture of the inside (the actual fruit!), but amidst all the road-trip preparations, I downright forgot. In fact, I almost forgot to eat one. Thankfully, they were misplaced en route to Texas and made it all the way home. Relieved, I peeled back the parchment and took a reverent bite.

Texture was a little grainy. Flavour was dark and assertive, though more gentle than domineering, like the woodsman who rescues Little Red Riding Hood. Until my first taste of that fruit leather, I had no idea that food could make a person feel so safe.

The recipe was discovered on an otherwise normal September, except for the fact we were anticipating the arrival of a boxful of pears from our local co-op. Pears, agave, and vanilla blended until smooth and dehydrated: it doesn't get much easier than that. And for traveling vegans, it's a God-send. Now with spring just around the corner, we can look forward to trying other seasonal fruit flavours in the near future.