Roasted Miso-Curry Delicata Squash

27.6.12


If you haven't visited the lovely blog space of Heidi Swanson, 101 Cookbooks, than you are surely missing out. 101 Cookbooks is a lovely little blog filled with beautiful and dreamy photographs of Swanson's life in the San Francisco Bay Area intertwined with an eclectic mix of delicious vegan and vegetarian dishes. I was lucky enough to receive one of her cookbooks, Super Natural Every Day, from Will last Christmas and it has become my go to cookbook for veggie dishes a couple nights a week. Our favorite recipe I have recreated so far is the Miso Curry Delicata Squash. It has such great flavor with the perfect balance of heat, tanginess and salt, which will definitely fill you up.

So let's get started:


You all know I am a total fan of the mise en place method!


The dressing/marinade looks slightly like peanut butter, but tastes far from it.


Use about 1/3 of the marinade to coat the vegetables and tofu and spread evenely on a rimmed baking sheet to roast for about 30 minutes.


Toss Lacinato Kale with remaining marinade and lemon juice.


Roasted Miso-Curry Delicata Squash serves 4
Recipe courtesy of Super Natural Every Day by Heidi Swanson


Ingredients
1 lb delicata squash
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup white miso
1 tablespoon red Thai curry paste
8 oz extra-firm tofu cut into cubes
6 small red potatoes cut in half
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 bunch of Lacinato Kale, tough stems removed and roughly chopped
1/3 cup pepitas, toasted
2/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees with a rack in the middle of the oven.

Cut the delicata squash lengthwise and use a spoon to scoop out all the seeds. Then cut into 1/2-1inch thick half-moons.

Using a food processor, combine the miso and curry paste and blend, adding the olive oil in a slow, steady stream. Combine the tofu, potatoes and squash in a large bowl with 1/3 cup of the miso-currp paste. Using your hands, toss the mixture well and empty out onto a rimmed baking sheet. Arrange in a single layer.

Roast for 25 to 30 minutes, until everything is tender and golden brown. Toss a few times while roasting. Meanwhile, whisk the lemon juice with remaining miso-curry paste and toss with kale until coated. Add roasted vegetables and tofu to kale and toss gently with pepitas and cilantro.


Toasted Pepitas


Place pepitas in a single layer on a skillet over medium heat. Toss occasionally and cook until fragrant and lightly toasted.

Astoria Vintage Hardware

25.6.12


While on our costal anniversary trip we stopped in Astoria, Oregon on our way to Long Beach, WA. Astoria is an über cute fishing town located on the northern most point on the Oregon coast. You may remember scenes of Astoria in The Goonies. Over the last fifteen years Astoria has undergone a major facelift and is now a bustling fish town with great restaurants, a brewery and fun shopping. Astoria Vintage Hardware is a unique salvage shop that occupies the lobby of the former John Jacob Astor Hotel. Filling over 4,000 square feet is all sorts of vintage hardware, furniture, fixtures and assorted flea market finds.



The salvage shop is the brainchild of Paul and Becky, a furniture builder and upholster who met at a flea market. We found various treasure,s new and old, from salvaged furniture and apothecary bottles to fair trade quilts and rugs. Even if you're not in the market to buy anything this place is a charmingly awesome shop and architectural landmark to peruse. The couple also hosts various crafting and repurposing workshops.



I easily could have spent hours in Astoria Vintage Hardware and will definitely have to go back! I've even been daydreaming about collecting some finds to decorate our wedding venue with.

Life Happens Sometimes

24.6.12


Funny, but true. Life happens sometimes and you have a million things on your plate and something's gotta give, but what? Unfortunately, for me it was the blog the last month or so. My apologies, but I hope you understand that you just can't take it all on, no matter how hard you try. Fork and Vine has taken a back seat lately to work, wedding planning, housing changes and family changes. Fear not, though! I am not abandoning Fork and Vine. I just needed some time to collect my thoughts and re-prioritize.

Thank you to all my new readers! Your kind words and encouragement have definitely motivated me to keep pushing through and I am so happy that you found my little spot in the blogging world! A lot of you have found from the Thrive, Kennedy, chair I won on Miss Jame's blog, Bleubird. I gotta tell you I was a little in disbelief when I was reading that I won such an amazing giveaway. I can't wait for my new chair to arrive and will definitely have to do a post once I receive it. She is such a sweet lady for sharing my blog with you and I am totally inspired by her blog and family...so beautiful!

Any who, I hope you stay tuned as I will be working diligently on some new content for Fork and Vine these next few days. Thank you for your patience and have a sunny Sunday!

The Buzz on Bees

12.6.12

With the growing use of pesticides and insecticides there has been a lot of concern on the state of honey bees...and there should be as honey bees contribute to 1/4 of the pollination needed for fruit production. When you really think about it, these little guys are our employees! They are the only insect that produces food for human consumption...that's right, HONEY! So why are we using not working harder to preserve their health?! The decline of honey bees is a real epidemic as it directly effects the world food supply. Mother Nature should be the producer of our food, not Monsanto.

The state of our health and the food we eat, go hand in hand. Wholesome eating is so important to Will and I as advocates for healthy lifestyle. Eating organically is so important for the state of agriculture, yourself and the bees! If you think about it, bees are dying in rapid numbers due to parasites, disease and largely because of insecticides. If it is toxic to them, and it is in our food, one has to think: is this toxic to me as well?

Here's a little video about an educational program put together by Pollinator, Seattle Bee Works and Whole Foods in Seattle:



Just as it is important for you to know these things, it is equally important for children to know the importance of healthy eating and where their food comes from. The only food education I had when growing up was the FDA's approved "nutritional" pyramid. Outside of learning that, I had no other education on healthy eating and growing produce. Most of my knowledge of organic and healthy eating I learned as an adult from working in fine dining and from chefs that value those same ideals. Educating children on healthy eating and food supply will directly effect a child's interest in eating and living a healthy lifestyle. Studies show that children are more likely to eat healthy, and share these habits with parents, if they know where their food comes from or are directly involved in the growing process.

Whole Foods in partnership with Pollinator and Sunnyside Environmental School have put together a really great educational event to do just this. I was invited to participate last week, however I was unable to attend because of work conflicts. A local bee keeper came in and taught children about bees and their colonies as well as the effects bees have on our food supply. The kids participated in planting seed bombs of bee friendly plants in gardens and their neighborhood to make these areas more pollinating friendly.

Here are some photos provided to me from the event:






Here are a few ways that you can help and become involved with living a healthier lifestyle:

Eat locally produced, organic fruits, vegetables and grains.

Eat locally produced honey.

Sign one of the many petitions against the use of pesticides and insecticides.

Plant bee friendly plants in your yard.

Become involved in educational programs about bees, farming or healthy eating (the more you know, the more the kids know).

If you're adventurous, you can care for your own colony.


For more information on bees and how to help the cause visit Pollinator Partnership. Also, if you are interested in Whole Foods values and community education visit here or check-in with your local Whole Foods wellness department.




Our Stay at the Adrift Hotel, a modern beach oasis

4.6.12


It's taken me a little while to get back on the blogging train and share our stay at the Adrift with all of you, but I am finally back to it. A while back we were planning our anniversary (and now engagement) trip and stumbled across a Groupon for the Adrift Hotel in Long Beach, WA. Will and I had such a pleasant experience and have vowed to make our way back in the future.


We were quite impressed with Adrift. The staff was super friendly and we really dug the modern decor. Most of the hotel and lobby were remodeled with reclaimed and salvaged materials. The hotel was very affordable, even without the Groupon and was full of amenities like free bike rental, books, games and movies, organic coffee and tea in their lobby. The bike rental came in handy as Adrift is only steps away from a 8+ mile trail that follows alongside the coast!



The shop in the lobby was chocked full of goodies including organic candles and toiletries that are used in the rooms, organic coffee, snacks, cheeses, salami, drinks, beer and wine. They even had beer from Fort George Brewery, which is a local microbrewery in Astoria. The best part is that nothing was largely marked up! Most hotels mark up these items to gain a larger profit, but I found everything to be about the normal retail price. Their selection of wine and beer was quite good, mostly from local Oregon and Washington producers.



And for all you animal lovers out there...Adrift is pet friendly! Tons of guests had their dogs with them as many of the rooms are pet friendly, and don't worry if you are allergic there are non-pet friendly rooms. We were pleasantly surprised how welcoming they were to dog owners. Adrift charges a very small fee ($15) for pets and there is a jar of treats right when you come into the lobby. We are definitely bringing Cassidy back with us in the future!


You will have to pardon my poor bed making skills as I took photos on the day we left! Our room was a Basic Single Queen room which was comfortable and clean. We were on the 3rd floor of the East building and had good views of the ocean. Our room was quite nice, but next time I would spring for a Deluxe or Ocean View Suite as the rates were really reasonable.



All of the rooms are equipped with a flat screen tv, dvd player and ipod dock alarm clock.


I fell in love with this flooring too! It really had an awesome color to it!

If you're looking for a nice little getaway on the Washington coast you should definitely look at staying at the Adrift Hotel or their sister hotel, Inn at Discovery Coast! Check 'em out!