Archive for the ‘Din-Din’ Category

We haven’t written in awhile. It’s been one of those months where everything in our lives seems to have exploded and created tiny little monsters of obstacles which we have steadily been working towards getting around. It’s been hard for us to fit in good wholesome meals, since everything seems to be going in high speed right now. However, I do still manage to fit in some good quality girl time, which usually involves very tasty meals. I love having friends who as soon as they see you down, do everything in their power to pick you right up. I’d do the same for them in a heart beat.

While sipping on some red wine we made Clean Green Simple’s Pesto and Red Pepper Sandwich 🙂

Pesto and Red pepper Sandwich on Quinoa buns (GF, Vegan 🙂 )



  • 1 Roasted red pepper
  • 1 large portobello mushroom, sliced into strips
  • 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 onion sliced into rings, chopped in half
  • Handful of spinach
  • 1 cup fresh basil
  • 1/4 cup raw walnuts
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp water
  • 1 tsp nutritional yeast (optional)
  • 2 quinoa buns

For directions, follow the link to Clean Green and Simple 🙂 She also has a wonderful tutor on how to do your own roasted red peppers!


So Cheers to good friends and rainy days 🙂


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Burgers are just one of those summer things. Something about the hot summer air just makes people want to dig their teeth into a juicy patty. Although neither of us will sit down and bite into a meat patty, we still love the idea of a savory burger alternative, that still offers all the flavor and satisfaction of it’s original form. When our dear friend Emily came over for a movie night, we decided it would be the perfect opportunity to A)test out our new hosting skills in the apartment B) make Robin watch the disney movie Anastasia because she had never seen it and finally C) try out another really tasty recipe from CleanGreenSimple!

Portabello Burgers with Chipotle Mayo, Cayenne Sweet Potato wedges and Onion Rings

Portabello Burgers topped with Chipotle Mayo and Onion Rings

First you will want to prepare a batch of Chipotle Mayo, because it is the heavenly sauce that will make your tasty burger, into the ultimate supreme burger. Not to mention it goes well as a dip for sweet potato wedge.. or really anything. Ms.Vickie’s Original Chips? Yes. Just make it, trust us.


1 cup vegan mayo or regular mayo *(see note)

1-3 chipotle chiles in Abodo sauce depending on spice level

1/2 tsp lime juice

*Katie can’t even touch vegan mayo because she’s iffy about the texture, but I am vegan and find the texture perfectly pleasant and equally tasty as regular mayo. So we made a vegan and non vegan version of this.


Combine all ingredients in a blender, and blend! Store in fridge while preparing the rest of the meal.

Now get ready for the onion rings,

Preheat your oven to 450 degrees


1 large red onion

1/2 cup + 2 T brown rice flour

2 T corn starch or arrowroot

1 cup unsweetened almond milk

1 tsp cider vinegar

1 cup bread crumbs (we blended up one of our GF quinoa burger buns)

1 tsp salt

2 tsp coconut oil


Combine flour, corn starch, almond milk and cider vinegar in a medium bowl. Peel the onion and slice as thin as possible. Dip them in the wet goop, then give them a hearty sprinkling of bread crumbs. Make sure you place them on parchment paper of a well greased baking sheet. We made some making sticking issues, so instead of pretty onion rings we ended up with a mass of them which we scraped off of the sheet. Cook them for about 6 minutes on each side, taking them out to flip them – they’re finished when they are golden and crisp! Don’t be discouraged by the appearance of them if they came out as ugly as ours did, they are still delicious.

Now for the main attraction, the portos. With three of us, we made 4 (just in case). With the stems removed, prep your grill (we used a panini press grill). Brush the portobello mushrooms with balsamic vinegar. Once on the grill, sprinkle a bit of salt and pepper. Cooking them for around 5 minutes on each side should get them to be browned, and slightly soft. We flipped our burgers a couple times, brushing them with more balsamic each time, because we just can’t get enough of the stuff. Toast your buns in the meantime in whatever way suites you.

Assemble and devour! Bun, Spinach, Tomato, Mayo, Porto, Onion Rings.

For a side dish, I begged to be allowed to make my spicy sweet potatoes. They’re the easiest thing to make but I’m addicted.


1 large sweet potato, skinned and chopped into wedges a size of your choosing (1 1/2 inches)

2 tbsp. coconut oil

1 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper (this is entirely flexible depending on how spicy you like your potatoes – wing it!)

Salt and pepper


I usually parboil the potatoes first – I find it helps with getting the best combination of fluffy soft insides and crispy outsides after the frying. This time though in wanting more instant gratification, the potatoes were tossed into a medium sized frying pan with the coconut oil on medium heat. Once the potatoes are starting to soften, toss the cayenne pepper, salt and pepper in making sure to coat them evenly. Continue to cook until browned and softened. It’s as simple as that…

What’s your favourite thing to eat on a girls night in?

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I was introduced to the superfood quinoa about a year ago, but since then hadn’t found a dish that I thought was to die for – until now. Robin and I are currently eating the leftovers! It came from an unlikely source which made its success even more sweet – Glow magazine (a magazine my mum gets for free once a month). I made a few alterations, the first of which is the kind of quinoa used. Inca Red Quinoa – I bought it out of curiosity, and was so pleasantly surprised. 


1 cup quinoa, rinsed (the red that i got was pre-rinsed)

2 cups water

1 tbsp of minced garlic

2 tbsp honey

1/2  cup coarsely chopped almonds (i use closer to a full cup)

1 bunch asparagus

1 cup of black beans (I did this the first time I made it, but this time I used a cup of corn, just because I was out of beans – JUST AS GOOD! :))

Around 1 tbsp of lemon juice, but use what suits your taste

2 tbsp olive oil

1/2 tsp. salt


Add quinoa, water, garlic & honey to a medium sized pot. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to let simmer for 15 – 20 minutes, or until all of the water is absorbed (if you’ve made quinoa you’re familiar with the process). Remove from heat and leave covered for around 10 minutes. While the quinoa is cooking, lightly toast the chopped almonds in a dry pan on low heat. I had never toasted nuts myself before and was a bit skeptical about the process, but now it’s all I want to. It creates the most heavenly aroma. Ever. Set them aside to cool off. Steam the asparagus lightly, you still want a little bit of crunch. Add the asparagus, almonds and beans (or corn! or both!) to the quinoa. Mix in the lemon juice and oil. This dish is lovely hot or cold, I usually can’t wait for it to cool off…

Eat up!

Love always

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A staple of our childhood play dates was, not surprisingly, pizza. In the past year we’ve made a few vegan attempts, and in celebration of our first big meal after moving in together, we decided to try a new recipe.

We used Clean Green Simple’s recipe, both excited by the always interesting challenge of making a vegan “cheese”. Her version is gluten free, but as Robin and I are only gluten-sensitive (not celiac), we decided to just use spelt flour. We made a few other alterations, as you’ll see!

The toppings we used: 

1 bell pepper, chopped into strips

1/3 cup canned corn

About 3/4 can of black beans, rinsed

For the Dough:

1 package (.25 oz.) active dry yeast

1 cup warm water (but not hot)

1 cup light spelt flour

1 1/4 cups brown rice flour

2 tbsp ground flaxseed

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. dried italian herb mix

1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes

1 tbsp. agave nectar

1 tsp. apple cider vinegar

Directions: In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. It should turn white and kind of “foamy”. In a seperate, larger bowl, combine the spelt and brown rice flour, flax, herbs & spices. Make a well in the center and pour in the yeast mixture, along with the rest of the liquid ingredients. Stir well until the dough is formed, make sure to scrape down the sides. Cover with a moist towel. While this rises, you can prepare the sauce and the “cheese”.

For the Sauce:

1 (8 0z.) can of crushed tomatoes

1 tsp. dried italian herb mix

1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes

1/2 tsp. salt

Around 1 1/2 tsp. of minced garlic

Directions: Combine in a small bowl.

1 1/2 cup of fortified almond milk (nondairy milk, or water)

1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes

1/4 cup brown rice flour

2 tbsp. sesame tahini

2 tbsp. cornstarch

2 tsp. lemon juice

2 tbsp. of finely chopped onions

1/2 tsp. minced garlic

3/4 tsp. salt.


Using a blender, process all the ingredients together until smooth. Transfer to a small pot or saucepan and cook over medium high heat, stirring almost constantly with a whisk until thick and smooth. Our stovetop is a bit temper mental, and tends to be a bit hotter than you would expect. As a result our cheese turned out a fair bit thicker than it appears Clean Green Simple‘s did. Robin and I didn’t mind though, I’d rather have a thick cheese substitute than a watery one!

This was our prep pre-cheese-cook.

The dough at this point had risen quite nicely, and proved to be good to work with!

At this point, we spread the dough out on a baking sheet that was greased with a bit of sunflower oil. It was easy to roll out and had nice stretch to it, no tears here! We put it under the broiler for about 5 minutes, but again, our oven is… a bit funky to say the least, Clean Green Simple uses a different method with different timing. Once this is done, we removed the crust from the oven an topped with the sauce (which smells heavenly).

Next we spread the cheese and put a liberal sprinkling of each of the toppings we selected. The pizza headed back into the oven and Robin and I impatiently waited the 10 or so minutes that we left it to broil. You’ll want to leave it until the edges of the crust and cheese start to brown a little bit.

Voila! A tasty treat. Served up nicely into a ton of little squares. We got to package a lot of it up for our lunches during the week, which is always an added bonus from a great meal.

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