Sips, Sweets & Snacks

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As much as I like to think of myself as a good cook, the honest truth is I don’t make food nearly as much as I’d like to. I hate being one of those busy people, but most days I just can’t figure out how to make time to plan, prep, cook, and clean up after a meal without getting overwhelmed.

I always admire my friends who seem to have it all figured out, especially Amanda of It’s Blueberry Moon. If you remember drooling over the pink sushi recipe I published awhile back, Amanda was a big part of that, and though her blog name has changed her crazy talent for making beautiful, colourful, HEALTHY food has not.

Constantly inspired by Amanda’s incredible Instagram posts documenting her meals (aka works of art) I approached her to collaborate on a brand new RAOP series that celebrates healthy living and a plant-based diet: Introducing #EatYourPastels! We’ll be sharing mega nutritious rainbow recipes a couple times every month, starting with this pink rice bowl! Without further ado, here’s Amanda and her first recipe on the RAOP site:

I’m already obsessed with eating and creating colourful foods, so when Alyssa approached me about a pastel collab I didn’t think twice! Taking everything to the next level (like pink tahini sauce!) could not excite me more. I wanted to make our recipes simple so that they’re easy to recreate at home. Hope you all have as much fun eating pink food as we did!

Scroll down for the recipe!

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What you’ll need //

Bowl Ingredients

1 cup brown rice
2 cups water
1 tbsp beet juice
1/2 avocado
1/4 cup chickpeas
1 mini cucumber
2 radish’s
1 small watermelon radish
1 stalk green onion
1 carrot
greens of choice

Dressing Ingredients

1/4 cup tahini
2 tbsp water
1 tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove
1/2 lemon, juiced
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tbsp beet juice

Directions //

Start by bringing your water to a boil. Rinse your rice well and add it to the water while reducing heat. Cover and simmer until cooked. While your rice is cooking you can start to chop up your veggies and make your dressing. Slice everything as desired, leaving your avo until last so it doesn’t brown.

To make dressing, combine all ingredients in your food processor or blender. If you don’t have either, no problem! Swap out the clove of garlic for a 1/2 tsp garlic powder and mix your sauce with a fork or mini whisk. You may need more lemon juice depending on the size of you lemon. Add to taste.

Once your rice has finished cooking, add your beet juice and fold it in gently to colour.

To assemble your bowl, start with a generous handful of greens for your base. We used mixed greens and some purple kale. If you like your food to look aesthetically pleasing before consumption, then use a tiny bowl to pack your rice in to form a little rice dome. Build your chickpeas and veggies around the rice in little pockets. Finish with a generous drizzle of dressing and garnish with some fresh sprouts.

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Sips, Sweets & Snacks

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Let me start by clarifying – Team RAOP does not support drinking copious amounts of gross green beer and kissing strangers *just* because they’re Irish today, but we absolutely support getting lucky in whatever way you see fit. For us, that means devouring some extra sweet treats!

These VEGAN + GLUTEN FREE (yes, both) Rice Krispie squares are so super easy to make it’s almost funny, and the level of delicious is nothing short of shocking. Adapted from the Dandies Marshmallow website, we added matcha and a sprinkle mix crust to our version, because St. Patrick’s Day. Now if only we could find ourselves a pot of edible gold flakes…

Scroll down for the full recipe!

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Ingredients //

1 bag of Dandies Marshmallows
5 cups Gluten Free Rice Krispie Cereal
2 Tbsp. Earth Balance
2 Tbsp. Coconut Oil
2 Tbsp. sweetened matcha powder
+ MANY sprinkles of your choosing!

Recipe //

In a medium pot on very LOW heat, combine margarine, coconut oil and marshmallows. Stir until it has all fully melted down to a sticky mess.

Mix in the cereal and stir until evenly coated with marshmallow mixture.

Stir in the matcha.

Press mixture into a 9×9 pan. Top with sprinkles and press even more to form a crust.

Once cool, cut into squares, and GET LUCKY!

Makes 1 9×9 pan, approx. 12 squares

Recipe adapted from the Dandies Marshmallow website!

This recipe also goes GREAT with last year’s LUCKY CHARMS CEREAL MILK MATCHA LATTE! What is it about St. Patty and cereal?

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Get Creative

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With the Spring Equinox almost upon us and the weather still cold as ever, Jo and I have been feeling a little drained. The days always feel too short, I was sick for quite some time with a kidney infection (OW) and we’re both in the process of moving, which is exhausting all on its own.

We couldn’t have asked for a better time to attend Hunt and Gather’s workshop with Witch in the Wild.

Let’s face it, a bad day (or month in this case) is no match for fresh blooms, self care products, and a touch of crystal magic. This two-part girl gang workshop started with an awesome lesson on blending your own organic, vegan, crystal-infused floral toner. The medicinal meets mystical with this simple DIY, and I loved how fun it was to make, even for a terrible crafter like me.

Part two was taken over by Tellie, one of my favourite florists, and owner of the brand new Hunt and Gather (go there and buy ALL the plants – you won’t regret it). Faced with amber jars and buckets of fresh flowers, we got to arranging our own divine bouquets to take home and treasure.

Topped with tea, treats, and a healthy dose of girl power, this evening event was exactly what Jo and I needed to recharge and power up. See you at the next workshop?

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Sips, Sweets & Snacks

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We took a bit of a break over, well, the holiday break, in part because we needed it, but also because we had a lot to figure out re: me taking off to La La land! With half the team (aka me) keeping toasty down here and the rest of us freezing their tails off back in Toronto, content has become a bit challenging.

Nothing wrong with a little challenge though, right?

The way I see it, our distance only means we can inspire each other in new, unexpected ways. One of my favourite things about the city of angels is the incredible food – so much fresh produce and so many amazing vegan options! Inspired by the dreamy menus I’ve seen here, and a potential upcoming trip to Hawaii (fingers crossed) I thought up this tropical veggie burger with the team, and they made it happen back home in the studio!

Taking a cue from some of the burgers I saw served to tables on trips to Hawaii as a kid, we topped our veggie patties with grilled pineapple rings, avocado and sweet bbq sauce. For a pop of pink, simply add a handful of pink pickled onions or turnips!

Scroll down for the recipe

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Ingredients //

Veggie burger patties (we used St.Yves because they’re vegan!)
Burger buns
Lettuce
BBQ sauce
Pineapple slices
Avocado
Pink pickled turnips or onions
Umbrellas for decoration (optional)

Steps //

We started by grilling our toppings! Lightly oil your grill and allow it to heat up fully. For the pineapple, make sure you press as much water as you can out of it first with paper towels. Then place on the grill and wait for those dark brown grill marks to appear, flip and grill the other side as well.

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To grill the avocado, lighting oil your grill again, cut the avocado in half length-wise and carefully peel away the skin from each half. Place the halves flat side down on the heated grill until you see the desired grill marks.

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Now grill your veggie burger patties and assemble! Start with the BBQ sauce, burger patty, lettuce, turnips, pineapple and finally avocado. Top your burger off with a fun umbrella and fries and you’re ready to eat like the islanders do!

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Plates from the Cheeky Home + Brit & Co collaboration!

Dear DiaryI'll Follow You Anywhere

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When I made the decision to book a one-way ticket to LA with no sense of when I’d stop adventuring and come back, it was so spontaneous and unexpected I didn’t really think all of the details through. When a friend asked me about a going away party a few days after I made the announcement, I was totally blindsided – I needed to say farewell to all of my dearest friends!

With less than a week left I scrambled to put something together, and luckily Planta came to my rescue. A new upscale vegan restaurant in Yorkville, this place is literally to DIE for, and I knew it would be the perfect location to feast with friends. Their incredible team booked us our own massive table tucked away at the back for Sunday brunch, and no lie, it ended up being one of the best meals of my entire life.

Cauliflower tater tots, banana pancakes, nachos, crab cake benedict… the list of wondrous creations sent from the kitchen went on and on. Every single thing, from the tea to the blood orange mimosas was absolutely divine, and by the end of the meal we were confident our server was the nicest man alive. We ate like queens, chatted incessantly, and in the end shed a few tears over goodbye hugs and Christmas gifts.

It was the kind of sendoff that almost convinces you to stay, and ensures you’ll be back.

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A special thanks to Planta for hosting my special day!