Tuscan Kale, Balsamic Sweet Potato and Wild Rice Warm Salad – #vegan #getinmybelly

DSC05320DSC05316DSC05322DSC05323DSC05325DSC05327DSC05329DSC05319

 

Okay, so this salad has been my new favorite meal – I like it so much I eat the leftovers for breakfast sometimes. It’s a spin off of my Faux Sweet Green Salad Recipe¬†– and I absolutely love that it’s warm. So it might be a big favorite in the fall but I’m sharing it now as there were many people on Instagram asking for the recipe!! Super easy to make, you can find Tuscan Kale at your local supermarket or preferably at your local farmers market! Try to buy organic where and when possible! I hope you all enjoy it!

What you need:

  • 1 Head of Tuscan Kale, washed and roughly chopped
  • 2 Medium Sweet Potatoes, cubed
  • 2 Cups of Wild Rice, cooked
  • Green Onion
  • 2-3 Garlic Cloves, chopped
  • 1/2 cup of white wine (can use water if you prefer)
  • 1/2 cup (+ more for sweet potatoes) of Balsamic Vinaigrette (this is something that if you buy from an artisan oil and vinegar shop can REALLY transform the dish!) – try to splurge on nice olive oil and balsamic when possible ūüôā
  • Salt, Pepper, Red Pepper Flakes
  • Balsamic Drizzle for topping
  • Olive Oil

Directions:

  1. Heat Oven to 400 degree Fahrenheit, place sweet potato cubes on cookie sheet and drizzle olive oil, balsamic vinegar and S&P over them mixing to coat evenly. Cook for 20-35 minutes depending on how cooked you prefer them (I actually like when they are a little charred!)
  2. Meanwhile, cook rice, chop kale, prep other ingredients.
  3. Once rice and potatoes are done, drizzle olive oil in a pan and add the kale and 2-3 stems of green onion also roughly chopped, seasoning with salt and pepper. Turn heat to medium and add the white wine and cover, reducing heat as necessary.
  4. Make sure to keep stirring so the ingredients don’t stick to the pan.
  5. Once Kale looks bright green, add rice, sweet potatoes, garlic and season.
  6. Add balsamic vinegar and continue stirring.
  7. Once the smells are very fragrant and the ingredients have soaked up most of the liquid, plate and serve warm.
  8. I suggest drizzling balsamic glaze, topping with fresh herbs and red pepper flakes…Enjoy!!
  9. For my carnivore readers – this is a great salad to top with grilled salmon or warmed goat cheese!!

Here’s to a healthy and happy you! xoxo

Roasted Garlic, Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos (Vegan, Gluten Free, DELICIOUS!)

DSC05029DSC05023DSC05025DSC05027DSC05069DSC05033DSC05048DSC05042DSC05061DSC05045DSC05059

Happy Friday!!! What a couple of weeks it has been!¬†We are now only 28 days away from our wedding celebration. I am soooooooo excited to see all of the details I have been working so hard on come into reality. Wedding Planning without hiring a professional planner is basically like having another job — I give major props to everyone in that profession. You have to be extremely detail oriented!

With all this warm weather I am constantly craving tacos and margs!!

T A C O S!!! Who doesn’t love them?

I am a sucker for some sweet potatoes and roasted garlic so I decided to roast them in the oven together to get a nice char on the potatoes and a creaminess from the roasted garlic. I seasoned them with a store bought organic fajita spice mix that I used for the beans and veggies as well. When you incorporate the spice throughout the meal, it really brings a unity to all the ingredients. This can be vegan or you can add cheese if you are a queso lover like me ‚̧

We topped this with a Pineapple and Mango salsa from Wegmans which was the bomb. When coupled with hot sauce, the flavors balanced out so well and the taste was INCREDIBLE!

These are so filling and hearty compared to most veggie tacos – I highly recommend. Let me know if you try them via social media with the hashtag: #jessicaashleyrecipes

Here’s to a healthy and happy you!!

What you need:

  • Tortillas (corn if you want to keep Gluten Free)
  • 2 Organic Green Peppers
  • 1 Small/Medium sized onion
  • 1 large Sweet Potato, cubed (I prefer to leave the skin on)
  • 1 Can or Package of Black Beans (BPA Free!)
  • 2 bulbs of Garlic (left in their natural covering for roasting)
  • Olive Oil
  • Organic Fajita Spice Packet
  • Lime Juice
  • Fresh Organic Cilantro

Directions:

  1. Heat Oven to 400 degree F
  2. Prepare Sweet Potato Cubes and Garlic Bulbs by tossing in olive oil and 1/4 of the spice packet. Add juice from 1 lime wedge.
  3. Roast in Oven for 35-40 minutes
  4. Meanwhile, chop onion and peppers julienne style and toss in olive oil, lime juice (1-2 wedges) and 1/2 of the spice packet.
  5. Rinse Black Beans and add in small pot. Season with 1/4 (rest of the spice packet). Lime zest, and 1/2 lime juice.
  6. Toss the onion and peppers in a large pan with 1/4 cup water, cover and reduce heat to medium.
  7. Continue stirring veggie mix every so often as to ensure it doesn’t stick to the pan.
  8. Once the veggies are soft they are finished, reduce heat to low to keep warm or turn off and cover.
  9. Heat Beans on medium heat and then reduce to low to keep warm.
  10. Once the sweet potato and garlic is ready remove from oven and squeeze the garlic out of its shell into bowl with potatoes.
  11. Heat Taco Shells.
  12. Build tacos with Beans, Veggies, Potatoes, Garlic, Cheese (optional), pineapple/Mango Salsa, fresh cilantro, hot sauce (optional).
  13. ENJOY!!!!!!!

Avocado, Tomato and Cheese w/ Balsamic Drizzle Sandwich (gluten free, quick and easy)

dsc03833dsc03864dsc03885dsc03900

Happy Monday! Did you guys see that moon last night? It was HUUUUUGE! We came back from a “Friendsgiving” weekend spent in¬†a Cabin in the mountains and were too tired to cook a meal from scratch so we opted to make sandwiches. Kiril adds smoked turkey or chicken to this sandwich but mine is Vegetarian (obvi.) This is so so so good. The KEY is to use FRESH and Organic Ingredients and to SEASON w/ salt and pepper. It pairs really well with a warm vegetable soup or some sweet potato chips (recipes to come).

Hope you guys enjoy…I have something yummy in the oven right now that I can’t wait to share with you guys soon xoxox

What you will need:

  • 2 Slices of Gluten Free Bread (or bread of your choice)
  • 1-2 Slices of Organic Cheddar Cheese
  • 1/2 Avocado
  • 3 Slices of Organic Tomato
  • Organic Mayo
  • Balsamic Drizzle (one without any added sugar!)
  • Pink salt and pepper

Simple ingredients, but tasty sandwich!

Directions:

  1. Toast the bread
  2. Place cheese on bread
  3. Spread Mayo
  4. Add Avocado, tomato
  5. Drizzle balsamic reduction
  6. Season with Salt and Pepper
  7. Eat up!

 

Here’s to a healthy and happy you xo

Caramelized Sweet Potato & Quinoa Salad (vegan, gluten-free, healthy!)

dsc03921dsc03947

dsc03957
Always my little helper!

Salad can be fun! I used to think restaurant salads were so much better than salads you made at home. While I was right on a certain level, mostly because they use tons of sugar to make you like their salads– I just didn’t understand you can think of a salad less traditionally. This WARM, toasty, CARAMELIZED sweet potato, quinoa salad with organic Arugula, Italian basil and white beans is by far one of my favorites. It’s a great dish for the fall but in a pinch, can be a quick cold lunch salad!

What you will need:

  • 1 Can of organic white beans
  • 1 Sweet Potato
  • Organic Arugula (or greens of your choice)
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup of quinoa
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Handful¬†of Italian basil, ripped
  • Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1tbsp of Annie’s organic balsamic salad dressing
  • Balsamic Reduction
  • Olive oil
  • pink salt and pepper

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 400 degree f
  2. Chop sweet potato into small cubes
  3. Prepare quinoa as directed, add salt to water it cooks in
  4. Place cubes of sweet potato on cookie sheet, drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper
  5. Bake at 400 degrees for 17 min, for 3 minutes broil on high, remove from heat right away
  6. In a pan, saute onion, garlic and beans until onion is translucent
  7. Add cooked quinoa, sweet potatoes, basil, season with salt and pepper
  8. Wash and dry arugula or your choice of greens
  9. In a large bowl, place arugula and drizzle with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper
  10. Add Annie’s dressing and 1 tablespoon or more of balsamic vinegar, and olive oil to the hot pan with cooked arugula, beans etc…
  11. When it is all mixed, remove from heat and add directly to the arugula bowl
  12. Mix and drizzle with balsamic reduction, plate!

I hope you guys like this recipe, I came up with it last night in a pinch…Enjoy!

 

Here’s to a healthy and happy you! xo

Spicy, Ginger Orange Butternut Squash Noodles with/ Tofu

dsc03728dsc03745dsc03753

Feels so good to be back in the kitchen! I seriously should invest in a wok with all the asian inspired recipes I’ve been whipping up lately. It’s my favorite way to get lots of yummy veggies in our system while also tasting delicious. Asian sauces tend to have TONS of Cane Sugar, Corn Syrup and MSG in them so BE CAREFUL. Always check your ingredients…I prefer to make my own and I value the use of potent spices. On another note, I made this with that four letter word most people fear…TOFU. I’m not sure if it’s because many do not know how to prepare it or the texture or what not, but I swear if you slip it into some of your dishes you won’t even notice.

What you will need:

  • Butternut Squash noodles, spiraled. Our grocery store (Wegman’s) sells them already spiraled which is a huge advantage into a quicker meal prep.
  • Broccoli or veggies of your choice
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • half onion, chopped
  • 2 packs of brown rice noodles
  • Red Garlic Chili Paste
  • non-Gmo, organic Tofu, extra firm (not cubed)
  • 2-3 tablespoons of organic peanut butter
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup or honey
  • fresh ginger grated
  • lime juice
  • zest of 1/4 of an orange
  • pink salt, pepper, red pepper flakes
  • for extra spicy: use a Jalapeno¬†pepper or spicy pepper of your choice. Make sure to remove the seeds and the membrane and wear¬†gloves esp if you have contacts!!!
  • Soy sauce (gluten free)
  • Organic Sesame oil 1 tablespoon
  • Unrefined Coconut oil 1 tablespoon
  • Asian ginger seasoning (spices)
  • Sriracha (optional)
  • Scallions for topping

Directions:

  1. Drain water from tofu and place tofu on paper towels, in colander with book or something heavy pressed on top (this should be done earlier in the day an hour or so before preparing this meal)
  2. Once the tofu as drained for an hour, chop into cubes and place in bowl. Cover with gluten free soy sauce, lime juice, fresh minced ginger, salt and pepper. Let marinate.
  3. Place rice noodles and butternut squash noodles in cold water to soak
  4. Place large pot on high heat filled halfway with water and heavily salted (this is for the noodles)
  5. Mince 2 cloves garlic, finely chop half a large onion, chop scallions for topping, chop broccoli into florets
  6. Steam broccoli
  7. Place noodles in boiling water for 4 minutes, drain but save 1/2 cup of water for sauce
  8. place coconut and sesame oils in wok or LARGE pan… on med high heat
  9. Add garlic, onion, season with salt, pepper
  10. When onion starts to look translucent (1-2 minutes) add red chili garlic paste, fresh ginger, lime juice, spicy pepper (if using), 2 tbsp soy sauce
  11. After 2 minutes, add 2-3 tablespoons of peanut butter, orange zest, 1 tbsp maple syrup
  12. Pan fry the tofu in this sauce flipping occasionally, adding 1/2 of the sauce it was marinading in
  13. Add cooked broccoli, toss until covered in sauce
  14. Taste and season with more asian spices, add Sriracha here too for extra spiciness
  15. Finally, add cooked noodles with 1/2 cup of the water
  16. Cover and let simmer for 1-2 minutes
  17. Mix together and plate, adding red pepper flakes, topping with scallions and sesame seeds.

Bon apetit!

Here’s to a healthy and happy you! xo