Created by Keith P. Rein
Lavender Vodka Spritzer
1 cup blueberries, for ice cubes
2 cups vodka
3/4 blueberry lavender simple syrup
4 oz lime juice
fresh lavender for garnish
To make simple syrup:
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
1 cup blueberries
4 lavender sprigs
Combine the water, sugar, and blueberries in a saucepan and bring to a boil stirring to dissolve sugar. Reduce heat to a low simmer and add lavender. Keep on low heat for 10 minutes. Strain the blueberries to get out all their juice.
Divide the cup of blueberries between to ice cube trays and fill with water. Freeze completely. In a pitcher, combine the vodka, simple syrup, lime juice, and club soda. Add ice cubes. Add remaining ice cubes to glasses. Pour the mixture over top and serve with a spring of lavender.
Cookout/Picnic Dessert Recipes (perfect for Fourth of July!!)
- Blueberry Cheesecake Brownie Bars- Brownies + Cheesecake = Winning.
- Summertime Strawberry Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting- Starts with a boxed mix. Ends with happy taste buds.
- Pistachio Honey Cake with Berries and Cream- A dense subtly sweet and nutty cake with berries and cream. Because if it ends in berries and cream, it’s gotta be good.
- Faux Fried Ice Cream- No one will know you cheated.
- Chocolate Root Beer Cake Floats- That’s right. Cake in a float. You know you wanna.
- Strawberry Shortcake (Cottage Pudding)- Perhaps my favorite recipe EVER. And yes, whole milk is required.
- Vanilla Peach Bundt Cake with Bourbon Peach Syrup- Bourbon and peaches–it’s the gift of summer.
- All Grown Up Banana Pudding- What’s a summer gathering without puddin’? And booze?
- Frozen Strawberry Fluff- Light as air and easy as pie…literally.
- Peaches and Cream Crumble Bars- Because cheesecake and peach pie were meant to be together.
- Peachberry Crumble for 2- Me and crumbles kinda have this thing going on.
- Rustic Amaretto Pluot Pie- Ever tried a pluot? This could be your year!!
- Strawberries and Cream Icebox Cake- Baking? Ain’t nobody got time for dat!
- Oatmeal Rhubarb Crumble Bars (stay tuned for a recipe remix–and better photos!– of these bad boys)
- Grilled Angel Food Cake with Strawberry Rhubarb Compote- Buy cake from store. Grill on grill. Smother in strawberries and rhubarb. Do it.
well… aren’t you a charmer.
i just turned 25, and i was served this gorgeous chocolate cake for my birthday this wednesday. the secret to any good chocolate dessert is using dutch-processed cocoa powder - the flavor is deeper and richer and it tastes better with less sugar. use this recipe for a good chocolate cake every time!
This might seem like another boring salad post, but I assure you, this salad is one of the best I’ve ever had! I’m no fan of iceberg lettuce salads (or, most of the time, even regular lettuce salads), so I try to find different ways of getting green into my diet. This salad has a lot of different flavors and textures, with none of the watered-down mess that comes with iceberg lettuce.
i started out this morning unable to wait for lunch. i was going to eat one of the fantastic chickpea burgers i had made earlier in the week. (that’s the beauty of making your own meatless burgers - you can make them exactly how you’d want them, and you can make a ton at a time.) but when i went to make the sandwich, i realized, to my own kind of horror, that we were out of bread. i really wanted this burger - so i decided to make my own bread. that’s how good this burger is; i never make my own bread unless under extreme food shortages like today’s, especially not bread that needs time to rise.
to make the burger:
- cook/uncan 5 cups chickpeas. working with them while still warm is a good idea here, it makes them easier to break down.
- place them in a bowl with 3/4 cup rolled oats, 1/2 cup ground rolled oats (i do that in my coffee/nut grinder), 2 tbsp ground flax seed, 1/4 cup water, 3/4 cup oil (i used olive), heaping amounts of spices like oregano/thyme/sage/tarragon/parsley/etc., freshly ground pepper and a couple heaping pinches sea salt. (obviously you’ll want to taste the mixture once you’ve beaten it together, and add spices as needed. if you’re storing them for the week, keep in mind that the flavors intensify as they “age.”)
- using a handheld or standing mixer, beat together the ingredients until well combined. (i like my burgers to be consistently textured but have a little bit of whole veggies/beans, so that’s what i shoot for.) add water and/or oil as necessary (i had to, but not too much.) the mixture should start easily sticking together by itself; if not, add a little more ground rolled oats and/or oil, depending on if it’s too dry or moist. these burgers held together better than any i’ve made so far, so if you have any issues let me know and i can probably troubleshoot it.
- from there, form the mixture into patties about the size of your palm. i’ve found that bigger veggie burgers fall apart very easily, especially when flipping. this recipe makes 10-12 patties, so you could simply layer them with parchment paper in a sealable fridge container for later cooking.
- when cooking, there’s no real need to fry them in any extra oil, because of the oil content in the original mixture. just place the burger on a high-heated flat pan and let each side crisp up on its own.
flash forward to today! i got my bread recipe out and started prepping my ingredients. i then realized i was completely out of flour, except for one bag of brown rice flour i happened to have leftover from a chickpea mag photoshoot. (nor did i have any fresh herbs.) i still really wanted this burger - so i kept going with the recipe, knowing it wouldn’t work out like a traditional loaf. i let it rise, which it didn’t very much at all. instead of creating a loaf, i cut the dough in half and made them into discs about two inches thick. i then let them bake, hoping the whole time this wouldn’t be one of those times i’d have to keep checking the oven and still no results. luckily, that totally wonderful smell of fresh bread wafting throughout the house worked well to keep me going.
the bread had baked, it even had a crust on the outside. testing it out proved that the taste and texture weren’t quite right, as it had more of a cornbread feel to it, but it was bread. bread i could use to house the chickpea burger, which i was still craving.
i crisped up the burger and each side of the bread, then slathered onto the bread a thick layer of vegenaise and crackled on some fresh pepper. it was SO good. even eating this hours after my first morning chickpea-burger-craving, i can tell you that all that effort was totally worth it.
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