Roasted Cauliflower Soup

cauliflower soupIn the late 1980’s, my family moved from a small island off the coast of Juneau, Alaska, to a town in West Texas.  We went from constant rain, mountains, ocean, icebergs and black bears to hot, dry, flat, dusty, tumble-weedy  ol’ West Texas.  Talk about culture shock!  The sunsets  were amazing, though, and the thunderstorms were terrifically terrifying. beautiful.
Alaska…so beautiful.
West parched.
West Texas…so parched.

Since the majority of our food came in on a barge from Seattle, most of the “fresh”, exorbitantly-priced produce spoiled before it even hit the shelves of  the grocery store, along with the milk and bread.  (My mom baked bread every week for this very reason. It was heaven.  We also had to drink powdered milk, which was…not heaven.  It was disgusting.)

When we made our cross-country move from rainy Alaska to parched West Texas, we finally had access to endless access to fresh veggies.  You can imagine my mother’s joy at perusing the produce section and picking up almost any vegetable her heart desired and being able to feed it to her decidedly unenthusiastic children.  Cauliflower was one of those veggies.  I had never tasted it up to that point in my (very) short  life.  And I hated it.  Cauliflower was my mortal food enemy.  Steamed, sauteed, hidden underneath a pile of cheese…ick.  I just couldn’t stomach it.

Something changed.

A few years ago, I mashed it up with all kinds of delicious dairy products.  (Dairy makes everything better.)  It became like potatoes, but better.  And remarkably less healthy.  I now have a full-blown love affair with the pungent white veggie called cauliflower, and try to find any way I can to make it in delicious and healthy ways.  It’s a great substitute for potatoes, rice, and even pizza crust.

Over at Elena’s Pantry, I found this recipe for Roasted Cauliflower Soup.  I tweaked it to suit my own tastes and method, and it turned out wonderfully.


  • 1 head of cauliflower, de-leafed and cut into thick slices.
  • 4 Tbsp of olive oil or ghee
  • 2 quarts chicken or veggie stock
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • S & P
  • Paprika
  • Micro greens or finely shredded kale


  1. Slice cauliflower into 1″ pieces. Drizzle oil on both sides of the cauliflower.  Go ahead and rub it in a little.
  2. In a large glass or ceramic baking dish, lay slices of cauliflower down flat.
  3. Sprinkle with salt and add 1/2-3/4 cup of water to dish.
  4. Toss it in the oven at 350 degrees for a good hour, and go do something else. Like paint a portrait.
  5. After the cauliflower is nice and brown and tender, take it out of the oven.
  6. In a large soup pot, add 2 Tbsp of ghee or olive oil (I prefer ghee), and saute onions and shallots until soft and golden brown
  7. Add stock and water (and a tiny bit of Better Than Bouillon if you have it), bring to a boil and  add cauliflower.
  8. Reduce heat and allow to simmer for 10-20 minutes
  9. In small batches, puree your soup in a blender until smooth.
  10. Put your pureed soup back on the stove in the stock pot on low heat, then add a little black pepper.
  11. Ladle into bowls, sprinkle with paprika and olive oil, then pile high with shredded kale or micro greens.

I love that there is no dairy in this soup (with the exception of the optional ghee), and it’s so satisfying and rich.  It feels like it should be bad for you, but it’s not.   In fact, it’s GOOD for you.  And it tastes phenomenally better than powdered milk.  Trust me.

And if you want to bastardize it and add cheese and bacon, it tastes more like a hearty, wonderful baked potato soup and you’ll eat ALL of it.

Skinny Stir-Fry Broccoli

Skinny Stir Fry Broccoli

I get really bored with veggies.  Actually I just get bored easily.  Walking up stairs, taking showers, brushing my teeth, chewing; these are all Very Boring Things.  Since I clearly have some undiagnosed and not-yet-invented form of ADD, I have made it a personal goal to make food (and life) as interesting and flavorful as possible.  I try everything.  I often go to Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods or a local farmer’s market just to see what’s out there, get inspired, and try my hand at something that might be change-your-life amazing or spectacularly awful.  It’s anyone’s guess how my adventure in boredom will play out.

At Trader Joe’s, I found a bagged organic broccoli slaw made from broccoli stems and shredded carrots.  Now, I really hate coleslaw.  I worked at Chick-fil-A in high school at the tender age of 15, and one of my jobs was making coleslaw.  (For the record, Chick-fil-A was still one of my favorite places to eat, even after I worked there.  If you’re from the south, you can relate to the absolute devotion and reverence Chick-fil-A inspires.  If you’ve never been, don’t go!  It’s highly habit-forming.  Like bad reality TV and Pinterest. It has taken me years of living in Oregon far from that chicken devil to break me of my habit.)  Of the many menu items, coleslaw was/is not one of my favorites.  I tend to think any time two cups of industrial strength mayonnaise is the main ingredient in a dish, it really can’t be good for you.

Smothering this finely shredded broccoli in mayo was never an option.  I also don’t like raw broccoli because…it mostly just tastes like a tree.  Unless you smother it with homemade ranch dressing or adorn it with one of Cee-Lo’s obscenely blingy watches, then I’ll eat it raw.  But on regular days for regular consumption, I prefer my broccoli cooked.

So I threw the whole bag of the broccoli slaw in a skillet with some coconut oil, Braggs Amino acids, S&P, granulated garlic, and watched magic happen.

The broccoli became soft and slightly caramelized.  It also developed a great tangy,  Asian-y, smoky flavor.  I finished it off with a good splash of fresh squeezed lemon, and it brightened the whole dish.  This is a great alternative to noodles if you’re trying to cut down on carbs, and a great way to bulk up a Asian pasta dish if you’re not.  Add some grilled chicken or sauteed shrimp and voila! You are ready to feed yourself and your family a tasty veggie dish.


  • 1 16 oz bag of Broccoli Slaw
  • 1  Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1-2 Tbps of Bragg’s amino acids (depending on what you like)
  • A dash of S&P and granulated garlic
  • 1/2 lemon, squeezed


  1. In a medium skillet, heat coconut oil on medium high heat (8/10) until very hot, then add entire bag of broccoli slaw.
  2. Do a quick toss to coat the broccoli in the oil, then allow to heat uncovered for 4 minutes without stirring.  (This is how you get that great caramelization!)
  3. Add half the Braggs, S&P, and granulated garlic, then toss again.  Cook for another 4 minutes without stirring.
  4. Add the rest of the Braggs, toss again, and evaluate if it’s ready.  If you still have uncooked portions, continue to cook without stirring for another few minutes.  Shreds should be soft but not mushy and still be very green.
  5. Remove from heat, squeeze the juice of 1/2 lemon over the stir-fry and serve immediately.

See?  That wasn’t boring at all.  And definitely killed any craving for fried chicken.  Right? Well, at least we tried, anyway.

What are your favorite broccoli dishes?

Roasted Beef Bone Broth

imageWe make and consume a ton of bone broth in my house, especially during the winter. This food trend is not new. In fact, it’s part of a traditional, centuries old diet.

Bone broth lines your gut with a protective layer of healing collagen, it is packed with protein and minerals, and restores skin elasticity over time. It is excellent for your hair and nails, too. For about $1.00 a quart, you can make your own at home.

  • My favorite go-to recipe uses roasted, grass-fed beef knuckles and leg bones, lightly roasted onion, carrots, celery and just a touch of garlic.

Did I mention that it makes itself? After roasting the bones and veggies, you throw it all in a low temperature crockpot, cover it in water and walk away for two days.


  • 1-2 lbs of grassfed leg and knuckle bones
  • 2 organic carrots, broken in half
  • 3 organic celery stalks, cut in half
  • 1 small organic onion, quartered
  • 2 cloves fresh organic garlic
  • 3 Tbsp olive or avocado oil
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Coat bones and veggies in oil.
  3. Place in glass baking dish or roasting pan.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes, but do not let the ingredients char. Your broth will taste terrible.
  5. Remove from oven and transfer immediately to crockpot and cover with water and add apple cider vinegar.
  6. Cook on low for 12-48 hours.
  7. Strain out veggies and bones. If you want super clear broth, do a second strain through unbleached cheese cloth.
  8. Store in a glass jar in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, or freeze for up to 6 months.




Apple Quinoa Mini-Muffins

2AppleQMinimuffinsI love January.  I love new beginnings and how ready we all are for a change.  My husband woke up on January 2nd and thought it was the perfect day to start cleaning closets. I am a really great wife because I let him.  I didn’t get in his way or anything!  I just left him to it while I took a bath and watched old episodes of The Mindy Project on Hulu as our son napped for three hours.

I didn’t make any New Year’s resolutions this year.  I feel like being a human is enough for now. So, stop trying to make me feel bad with all of your “I’m going to eat food regularly” and “I’m going to walk up the stairs instead of take the elevator more often” and “I’m going to learn how to knit” and “I’m going to shower at least four times a week” resolutions, okay?  I get it.  YOU HAVE AMBITION. And me?  I’ll have these vegan mini-muffins.  Because I’m fancy. And it’s also one of the few foods I can share with my FPIES toddler, who I try to include in meals and create balanced meals for, even though it’s stupid challenging. (For more on that, see my post on The Leaky Boob.)

Apple Quinoa Mini-Muffins*


  • 1 cup quinoa flakes or quinoa flour
  • 1/2 cup milk of your choice (I use goat’s milk for E)
  • 1/2 cup organic apple sauce
  • 2 Tbsp organic dried apple, chopped
  • 2 Tbsp organic coconut oil
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp aluminum-free baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon or cardimon (0ptional)
  • pinch of salt


  1. Put quinoa flakes in food processor or magic bullet and grind into flour. (Omit this step if you are using quinoa flour.)
  2. Combine dry ingredients in a medium mixing bowl.
  3. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and mix well.
  4. Spoon batter into greased mini muffin tin. (You can also line with paper baking cups instead of greasing the muffin tin.)
  5. Bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes, or until spongy to the touch.
  6. Let stand for five minutes, then remove muffins and allow to cool on a wire baking rack.

{Recipe yields 18 mini-muffins}

*You can make these in non-mini form but they’re tastier and seem to stretch farther in mini form.