Sips, Sweets & Snacks

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Coffee is great and tea is even better, but I think we can all agree that when December rolls around there’s a hot beverage that smokes all the other competition – ’tis the season for hot cocoa!

Personally I’m a fan of anything chocolate all year round, so the influx of creamy sweet drinks topped with whipped cream leading up to Christmas is welcome in my books. This year we wanted to come up with something a little bit extra to sweeten our cocoa creation – a mix of all of our favourite beverages in one! What does that mean? Matcha, coffee, sugar and cocoa all meet to form the most perfect holiday beverage, finished with a touch of peppermint to up the festive flavour!

Scroll down for the full recipe!

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What you’ll need //

1/3 cup coffee beans
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
2 tablespoons Matcha Ninja 100% Raw Organic Matcha
3-4 tablespoons cane sugar (or sweetener of your choice)
2-3 drops organic mint extract (our favourite is from The Spice Trader)
1 cup non-dairy milk
Coconut whipped cream
Sprinkles for garnish (we used Edible Gold Stars)

Recipe //
Makes 2 mugs

Grind the coffee beans into a coarse grind and boil water. We used this Turkish Handmade Coffee Grinder it’s perfect for just 1-2 cups!

In a small dish mix equal parts cocoa powder, matcha powder, sweetener and hot water, whisk with a Bamboo Matcha Whisk until it resembles a thin paste or syrup. Add 2-3 drops mint extract.

Heat up the milk in a small pot on the stove or use a frother, (add a bit of sugar to the milk for an extra indulgent treat).

In a Gold Bodum French Press combine coffee grinds and 2 cups boiling water (about half the french press) and allow to steep for 5-6 mins. Add the syrup mixture to the bottom of each mug and fill the mug halfway with hot coffee. Top off the mugs with warm milk and coconut whipped cream, garnish with sprinkles and you’re ready to serve!

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Sips, Sweets & Snacks

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Thanksgiving isn’t always easy if you’re vegetarian or vegan – in fact it can be a bit of a sad Holiday if everyone else at the table is feasting on turkey and gravy while your tummy grumbles! As a team of veggie ladies here at RAOP we’ve suffered many a hungry Thanksgiving, so we wanted to come up with an epic feast that literally anyone/everyone can enjoy this year!

We called upon master vegan recipe maker Amanda of Blueberrymoon to help us dream up the ultimate vegan Thanksgiving meal with only one condition: it has to be pastel! She truly outdid herself, making the recipe not only vegan AND pastel, but also gluten-free, soy-free and bean-free! These simple recipes can be added to your family’s traditional spread, or can stand as their own meal instead of the typical turkey set up. Start with Purple Cauliflower Soup, move on to Roasted Rainbow Veggies, and finish off with Layered Matcha Raspberry Tarts, or start with dessert and work your way back!

Styling tips – we set our scene with crystals, candles, and gleaming gold + iridescent CB2 goodies! You can shop some of our favourites here

Special thanks to Zipcar for providing a Thanksgiving vehicle to help us hunt down all of the rainbow food we needed!

Scroll down for all 3 recipes!

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Purple Cauliflower Soup //

What You’ll Need //

1 head purple caultiflower
½ an onion
2 large garlic cloves
1 tsp chili powder
2 tsp cumin
¼ cup cashews
1 ¼ tsp salt (less if using veg broth)
Enough water or vegetables broth to cover veggies in your pot

How To Prepare //

Chop all your veggies and add to a large pot along with your spices and cashews. Use enough water or vegetable broth to cover everything.
Bring to a boil and reduce heat
Simmer for about 25 minutes or until cauliflower is tender enough.
Use a blender, food processor or hand emulsifier to puree soup.

This is a very simple soup recipe to feel free to get creative with spices and herbs!

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Roasted Rainbow Veggies //

What You’ll Need //

1 large head purple cauliflower
1 watermelon radish
1-2 purple sweet potato
10 mini pink potatoes
½ head of broccoli
4 heirloom carrots
½ an onion
2 garlic cloves
olive oil
smoked paprika
salt
pepper
chili powder
cumin
fresh rosemary

How To Prepare //

Chop veggies and brush with a generous coat of olive oil using your basting brush.

Season with the spice selection we used, or use your favorite go-tos!
Roast at 400°F for about 45 minutes to an hour.

Check and flip half way through.

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Layered Matcha Raspberry Tarts //

What You’ll Need //

Crust

10 dates
½ cup almonds
½ cup oats
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tbsp coconut oil

Filling

2 cups soaked cashews
1/3 cup maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla
2 tbsp lemon juice
½ cup full fat coconut milk
¼ cup melted and cooled coconut oil
1 tbsp matcha
1 cup frozen raspberries, thawed

How To Prepare //

Starting with the crust, add everything into your food processor until it becomes a meal consistency.

Line a muffin tray with two ¾ inch strips of parchment paper that are crossed and are long enough to grab for easy tart removal. Alternatively you can use individual parchment muffin cups.

Pack about 2 spoonfuls of the meal into each cup and pack down firmly to form your crust.

Set aside and start on your filling by rinsing the soaked cashews well.

Add everything into the blender except for the matcha powder and raspberries. (Vitamix or similar preferred to create a creamy filling)
Once pureed remove half of the filling into a bowl.
Add you matcha powder to the blender and blend until chunks are gone.

Use this portion of the filling to create layer one of your tart! Once you’ve evenly distributed the filling, bang against the counter to remove air bubbles and but in the freezer.

Rinse out your blender and add in the other half of the filling plus the raspberries! Blend until pureed.

Use this at he top layer, repeating the previous steps.
Put in freezer and let set for a few hours.

We recommend leaving these in the freezer until about 10 minutes before you’re ready to eat them!

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Sips, Sweets & Snacks

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Whenever something magical and pastel starts circulating around the internet, we take it as a personal mission to test the trend. Scrolling through Pinterest a few weeks back I came across a post headline that read “Unicorn Noodles Are the Biggest New Food Trend”.

It was my solemn duty to investigate this new claim.

Apparently there’s a totally natural way to dye glass noodles pink, AND you can make them change colour! Various blogs all over the internet claim by cooking the noodles in purple cabbage they’re turn a vibrant shade of turquoise, and when citrus like lime is added to the mix the noodles change to shades of purple and pink. It seemed almost too good to be true, so we got to work testing this theory on our next staff lunch break.

Turns out, the rumours were TRUE! We made the prettiest rainbow fresh rolls with no added food colouring, just natural enchanted veggie magic! Scroll down to find out how we did it.

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What you’ll need //

1 package vermicelli or glass noodles
1 package Rice paper
Half a head of purple cabbage (roughly chopped)
Blue Majik Capsules

Avocado
Mango
Cucumber
Purple carrot
Green onion
Lime

Sweet Chilli Thai sauce for dipping

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Instructions //

Begin by making the magic blue noodles, in a pot over high heat boil a handful of purple cabbage with 2-3 cups of water. Stir and boil for 5-10 minutes, the longer you boil the cabbage the darker blue the water and final result. Take the pot off the heat and strain out the boiled cabbage with a spoon. Add the noodles, stirring occasionally to ensure all the noodles are covered with liquid. Cover and wait 2-3 minutes. If you want to add a little extra colour to your noodles, we used a capsule of Blue Majik opened and stirred it into the strained noodles!

You’ll find that adding an acid, like lime will start to change the blue to pink!

Set the noodles aside, and cut up veggies. Grate, or slice thin vertical pieces of each item and line them up ready for assembly. Fill a large bowl with hot water, not boiling. Slowly place one sheet of rice paper in the bowl at a time until it softens. Carefully shake excess water off and drape over a plate. Place a small handful of noodles and veggies along the middle of the plate and fold both the bottom and top inward. Now roll it up from the sides, the rice paper is very sticky so it will help to shape the roll.

Once you’re done rolling, cut each one in half and serve with a dip! Add a little extra lime juice if you’d like.

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Sips, Sweets & Snacks

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I have a confession to make – until recent years I was never ever a salad person. For some reason the crisp of cold veggies just didn’t appeal, and I was almost offended when someone offered this healthy dish to me… maybe because everyone assumed it’s all I would want as a vegetarian!

These days I’ve finally come around, often opting for salad instead of pasta or other heavy carbs (ok, who am I kidding: I’ll get salad on the side) and whenever I have fresh local veggies in the fridge I try to add some green to my lunches.

Johanna and I were lucky enough to be invited to a picnic at Fresh City Farms that included all sorts of amazing local veggies. We ended up loading up our shopping bags with special goodies to take home, and got creative with a garden-inspired local summer salad! Complete with lavender honey dressing, this recipe tastes like warm summer days spent in sun and soil, with flowers and veggies in abundance.

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What you’ll need //

Local spring greens
Easter egg radishes
Watermelon radishes
Local garlic scapes
Snap peas
Cherry tomatoes
Grated purple carrot
Apple or Grapes
Pansies or other edible flowers for garnish

Dressing //

2 tablespoons Lavender-infused Olive Oil
2 tablespoons Raw Honey
3-4 tablespoons Boiling water (to dissolve honey)
Juice from half a lemon

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Sips, Sweets & Snacks

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As you all know very well, the more pastel coloured foods we can get our hands (and mouth) on, the better. So, when Amanda proposed Rainbow Cauliflower Tacos as the next adventure for #EatyourPastels we were more than just excited. It’s no secret everyone loves tacos – they’re adorable, bite-sized, and packed with flavour, so what’s not to adore?

Eating vegan 24/7 can be tough – I know I struggle with cutting certain foods out of my diet, especially when dining out. It’s easy to fall into the pattern of eating plain veggies and carbs and ending up a bit bored. These recipes are quick and make it easy for anyone to eat vegan at home. The tacos we made for this post use lentils as the base, instead of the traditional meat or faux products. Lentils are a great unprocessed alternative to using tofu or other protein replacers, and with the right spice blend they taste surprisingly meaty.

Scroll down for the recipe!

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What you’ll need //

Lentils:
½ cup lentils
1 cup water
¼ tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp smoked paprika
¼ tsp chili powder
¼ tsp cumin
1 tbsp tamari

Seasoned Cauliflower:
½ head cauliflower
1 tbsp coconut or olive oil for frying
1 tbsp taco seasoning
salt to taste

Guac:
1 avocado
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp garlic powder
½ lime juiced
cilantro to taste

Garnish:
shredded candy cane beet
pickled onions (learn how to make your own here)
watermelon radish
nutritional yeast
tortillas

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To Make:

Lentils:

Start by rinsing your lentils. Combine with water in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Once they reach the boiling point, reduce heat and simmer on low for 20-30 minutes. Keep an eye on them and add water as needed. When lentils are finished cooking, season with tamari, garlic, chili, smoked paprika and cumin.

Cauliflower:

Cut or break up cauliflower into small pieces. Add your oil of choice to a pan and fry on medium/high until golden brown. Season with taco seasoning and salt.

Quick Guacamole:

In a bowl, mash you avocado adding in all the ingredients listed until you reach desired taste. Voila! You have yourself some guac.
To assemble, be creative! We garnished our crew with some pretty pink friends; watermelon radish, shaved candy cane beet and pickled red onion. (Find the recipe here) We then sprinkled on some nutritional yeast and fresh cilantro. Enjoy these beauties with a squeeze of lime juice and maybe even a margarita!

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