Tag Archives: lemon

Simple & Sweet – Half Iced Tea/Half Lemonade Deliciousness!

2 Aug

the owls want in on this tasty drink...

I always relate summertime to really craving amazing, refreshing beverages…like this half iced tea/half lemonade concoction made famous by pro-golfer Arnold Palmer! His canned version has some iffy ingredients (high fructose corn syrup, anyone?) and it’s more fun and fulfilling to make it on your own anyway! Just brew up some strong, unsweetened black tea and mix with some fresh lemonade, 1:1. Delish! For making lemonade, you would usually make a simple syrup with water and a ton of refined sugar…bit too unhealthy for me! Try making simple syrup with honey, agave nectar or perhaps maple syrup? I wonder how that would taste…maple lemonade…hmm…

Fresh-Squeezed Lemonade

  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sweetener of choice (raw honey, agave nectar, etc)
  • ~about 1 cup of fresh squeezed lemon juice (it took us about 9 lemons!)
  • ~about 4 cups of cold water (+/- depending on how tart you like it! I enjoy it very strong! taste it as you go…)

In a small saucepan, mix water and sweetener over medium heat, stirring constantly. Heat until bubbling and fully mixed. Set aside.

Squeeze yer lemons! Add lemon juice, simple syrup, and cold water to a pitcher and stir stir stir! You now have lemonade! Splendid.

Lemon Cream Sauce Pasta Topped with Basil and Roma Tomatoes

29 Jul

This hot summer night called for something with a zip and fresh flavors! I whipped this easy, filling dinner up in just under 30 minutes. The lemony sauce wasn’t overwhelming, but even with the juice and zest of 2 lemons, it could have used more! Maybe I just had wimpy lemons? The newly cut basil and fresh romas mixed nicely with the sauce. I just wish I had had a chilled glass of chardonnay to go with it (and perhaps in the sauce? intriguing…) The recipe definitely has room for tweaking and I look forward to coming up with new ways to improve it!

The cream sauce is just a basic white sauce (bechamel) made from a roux. I really enjoy how the white sauce can pretty much be turned into whatever you fell like creating! It’s very flexible and simple to make, as long as you don’t mind standing over a hot stove for a little while. Want a step-by-step breakdown of making a roux, bechamel or mornay sauce? Read this very informative article!

all it needed was a glass of wine...

(Vegan) Lemon Cream Sauce Pasta Topped with Basil and Roma Tomatoes

Start by getting some water boiling for your noodles! You can pretty much whip up the sauce while the water boils and noodles cook.Β  I used about 1/3 box of whole wheat Rotini noodles. Just pour the sauce over the noodles, cut some fresh basil, chop some tomatoes and you’ve got a meal!

Lemon Cream Sauce

  • 2 tbsp Earth Balance
  • 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tbsp garlic powder
  • a couple dashes of salt & pepper
  • 1 cup original almond milk (or whatever milk you prefer–not sure how the acidity of the lemons will react to them though!)
  • Zest & juice from 2 lemons

In a small saucepan over low heat, melt the Earth Balance and add the garlic powder, salt and pepper. With a whisk, incorporate the flour and cook for a couple minutes until slightly brown and bubbly. This is a roux! Over medium heat, add a small amount of the almond milk and whisk until mixed and beginning to thicken. Continue stirring and adding the rest of the milk slowly. Sauce should be nice and thick now! If not, there’s always cornstarch πŸ˜‰ Remove from heat.

With a microplane grater, zest the lemon straight into the sauce. Add lemon juice and stir! This freaked me out, but I noticed that my sauce started getting all bubbly and crazy looking (pretty sure it was the lemon juice reacting with the almond milk). I was worried things might start heading south and curdle, but all settled down and continued being smooth. Success.

Notes:

  • I might try to somehow make this more lemon-y! Perhaps adding the lemon directly into the melted better? Drizzle more lemon juice over the finished dish? Hmm.
  • Some toasted sliced almonds over the top of this adds a nice crunch!
  • For a green, more basil-centric sauce, whiz the sauce and a handful of basil in the blender
  • Instead of basil, try this with fresh thyme

TGIF! πŸ™‚

Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins and Raspberry Oatmeal Muffins – Vegan!

28 Jul

Hearty and super simple vegan muffins!

I was craving a muffin as soon as I woke up this morning. It just seemed right. With frozen blueberries and fresh raspberries waiting for me in the fridge, everything came together. I found this great recipe on VegWeb (awesome resource for new and old vegetarians/vegans alike) and threw these muffins together within 10 minutes. I had never had raspberry muffins before and was feeling daring, so why not? I imagine you can make a muffin out of anything…

I ended up making two batches of this basic muffin recipe. The first batch were blueberry muffins using entirely whole wheat pastry flour and no applesauce. The second batch were raspberry oatmeal muffins that pretty much followed the recipe below verbatim, but with 1/2 of rolled oats added.

Whole Wheat Blueberry Muffins (adapted from VegWeb recipe)

  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 VERY RIPE mashed banananana
  • Grated peel of one lemon (optional)
  • 1/2 cup honey, maple syrup, agave nectar, or your favorite sweetener (See Notes)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup nondairy milk (used light Almond Milk)
  • 1/4 cup applesauce
  • 1 cup frozen or fresh blueberries (OR whatever fruit your have! nectarines? peaches?)
Preheat oven to 385 degrees.
In a small bowl, mash the banana. Add your lemon peel, sweetener, milk, applesauce (if using) and mix together well. Β In a separate bowl, mix all dry ingredients except for the berries. Slowly work the dry ingredients into the wet, being careful not to over mix. Fold in your berries!

If you’re using MUFFIN tins/papers/whatever they are called, great. If not, remember to spray your muffin pan otherwise IT WILL BE VERY DIFFICULT TO WRESTLE THEM OUT OF THEIR MUFFIN CAVES.

Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until tops become nice and brown. DEVOUR.

 

Notes & Variations:
– Using only one banana really doesn’t make these muffins taste like banana (which is what I was going for). There’s a faint flavor, but it doesn’t overpower the lovely blueberries!
– Sub 1/2 cup of the whole wheat pastry flour with all-purpose flour for a slightly (but not much) lighter muffin.

Soft muffins! Not too heavy either, considering they are whole wheat.

– Need more fiber? Who doesn’t? Add 1/2 cup (or more) of rolled oats. Remember to account for how rolled oats tend to suck up liquids!
– Looking at this recipe, it appears that there really is a lot of liquid in the muffins. Remember, I’m at 5,280ft above sea level here in Denver. Stuff always dries out on me, so I tend to add a little more liquid. My first batch of muffins I left out the applesauce completely–they stilled turned out great! The second batch with the raspberries were a tad more moist.
– Some vanilla might have been good in this…of course I think of it after I’m done baking!
– Nuts! need to remember to throw some walnuts in next time πŸ™‚


These really turned out great. A hearty breakfast that you won’t feel too guilty about! Whole wheat and no oil always sounds good to me!
Since I used lemon peel in this recipe, I’m really craving something tart and sweet…lemonade might be in the near future…