All posts tagged: snack

Mama Gina’s Greek Hummus (Vegan & Gluten-Free)

What you are about to read is very coveted, top-secret information. As a Greek girl, hummus has always been a staple at our family table, especially on holidays, when family gatherings traditionally start with mezethes. Fresh-cubed feta cheese, Greek olives, grape leaves and creamy dips with pita bread are dug into by hand over lively conversation before moving to the table for the main meal. The star of our mezethes spread is always my mother’s homemade hummus. This recipe has been passed down from generations of Greek women, originating on the island of Samos with my grandmother’s relatives, travelling with my Yiayia to America where it settled into New York’s immigrant city blocks and finally landing with my mother in sunny Southern California and onto our suburban table. Over many years in LA, our family hummus was the favorite attraction at every gathering even before it became the de rigueur go-to Cali party snack. Many of our friends growing up were exposed to hummus for the first time at our house. But no matter how popular it …

Organic Beet Greens (Vegan & Gluten-Free)

When most people buy a big bushy bunch of organic beets down at the local farmer’s market or harvest them from their home garden, they immediately begin dreaming up all kinds of delicious things to do with those plump red juicy bulbs. Stewed beets! Roasted beets with root vegetables! Beet salad! Fresh-pressed beet juice! They excitedly prep their beets, chopping off the greens on top and throwing them…right into the trash or compost. (Cue record scratch.) Hold it right there, Quick Draw. Those leafy greens on top are not only incredibly delicious, but are also one of the most nutrient-rich parts of the beet plant. With a look and taste very similar to swiss chard, those leafy beet greens are a yummy, nutritious side dish that will instantly bring a gourmet farm-to-table touch to any meal. The best part? Sautéed beet greens are unbelievably simple and take only 10 minutes to make, start to finish. Beet Greens Prep Time: 5 mins Cook Time: 5 mins Total: 10 mins Serves: 4 people   INGREDIENTS~ tops of …

Tuscan White Bean Dip (Vegan & Gluten-Free)

In California, it seems you can’t hit a single party without ten different people bringing hummus. Don’t get me wrong—I LOVE hummus. As a Greek girl, it comes with the territory. But if you’re looking for a new way to spice up your Mediterranean bean dip offerings for your next gathering, look no further than this unbelievably fast and tasty Tuscan White Bean Dip. Creamy, delicious and flavor-packed with just the right amount of chunk, this vegan and gluten-free side dish can be served warm or room temp. It’s a savory, hearty, mouth-and-soul-satisfying twist on a white bean dip to leave your guests begging for more. The best part? It literally takes ten minutes from start to finish, possibly less if you’re a Speedy McGee—the fastest gourmet meal you’ll ever make! It all happens in one pan with basically no clean-up. Try this recipe out and keep it in your back pocket as your secret weapon and be prepared to impress with zero fuss. Serve with vegetable crudités and crackers as an appetizer or with …

Cheesy Zucchini Pinwheels ~ (Gluten Free)

This is the time of year when those long light-filled days extend into those fun summer nights. From outdoor bar-b-ques to concerts in the park, parties, dinners, picnics and outdoor movie nights galore, the revolving door of side dishes to offer at any given gathering can become a bit redundant. So in honor of my favorite time of year in LA, when it’s a parade of excuses to gather under the setting sun, I offer you some favorite quick and easy recipes to spice up your next potluck. Earlier this week, we celebrated the kick-off of summer activities featuring our Los Angeles Summer Outdoor Movie Guide and some recipes that would be fun to jazz up your next picnic spread. (Click HERE to see the article.) To continue this celebration of Food & Film, I want to offer you my Cheesy Zucchini Pinwheels–sure to impress your foodie friends at your next sunset picnic movie night.   These beautiful bite-sized rosettes are a simple and delicious taste of Italy that are not only healthy, gluten-free and grain-free, but can also be …

Chia Pudding

The first time I saw chia pudding was a few years ago in San Francisco. My friend had ordered it at a brunch and when it arrived, it was as if a work of art had been presented in the middle of our farm table. The black and white chia pudding with apricot compote and rough chopped almonds looked like a mosaic masterpiece. Once I found out how simple it was to make, it’s been a staple in my refrigerator as a quick breakfast, an easy snack or a decadent dessert ever since. Not only is chia pudding gluten-free and can be made vegan & sugar-free, it is packed full of anti-oxidants, fiber, protein and has more Omega-3s than eating salmon. Because this super food is just hitting the mainstream, so far it is a non-GMO, usually organic, whole grain that has calcium, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, potassium, and vitamin B1, B2 & B3! I love the versatility of chia. It soaks up the flavor of whatever you add to it. My recipe for chia …

Vegan Gluten-Free Apple Oat Cookies

I have been asked for this recipe more than any other thing I’ve ever baked. So… I will share it with you now so you can hoard a batch for yourself as an act of self-love or wow a loved one with this bite-sized breakfast-in-bed to accompany a morning coffee. Words that describe my Oat Cookies: Quick, Easy, Healthy, Vegan, Gluten-free, Sugar-free, Delicious, Addictive, Crowd-Pleaser, Snack, Dessert, Breakfast…Need I say more? Makes 12 Cookies Vegan Gluten-Free Oat Cookies   PREP: 10 minutes COOK: 25 minutes Ingredients 3 ripe bananas 1 cup chopped skinned apples (*you can also substitute chopped dried or fresh fruit like berries, dates, raisins, apricots, etc.) 1/3 cup melted coconut oil ½ tsp salt 2 cups quick oats (*you can use quick oats or regular oats; the regular GF oats give the cookies a crisper texture) 1 tsp vanilla extract 1/2 cup unsalted roasted chopped almonds (Optional) Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease your cookie sheet. Set aside. In a large bowl, mash the bananas. Add the oil, salt and vanilla. Mix in the oats. Set aside a few minutes for …