What’s in Season? March Produce

Learn what to do with March fruits and vegetables! Find recipes, preparation tips and more. cookieandkate.com

Finally, spring is near! I’m camped out on my parents’ couch, recovering from a cold and planning spring recipes in between episodes of House of Cards. Could be worse. It’s hard to believe with all the snow on the ground, but asparagus will be here soon. Yes! I need all the green things after overindulging in Austin all last month.

Thanks again to Becky for letting me base this resource on her “Eat Seasonal” monthly seasonal produce lists. You can download her free screensaver for February produce over here. For more seasonal inspiration, follow me on Pinterest and Instagram, too!

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Butternut Tabbouleh

Fresh and light wintertime taboulleh recipe - cookieandkate.com

Today is the day our Austin adventure ends. We’re packing our bags and preparing for long drives north, back to reality and moderation and freezing cold temperatures. As I leave Austin, I find some peace in knowing that I can recreate my favorite dishes here at home, like I’ve done with my Israel experience. (Tacos, coming up!)

flowers and mint

This wintery spin on traditional tabbouleh will go down as the last meal I cooked in our modern white and wood kitchen here. It was inspired by my trip to Israel last fall, which I’ve talked about in this quinoa dish and this tahini shake. Like I’ve said already, Israel is complicated. The people and places we visited, though, were warm and inviting, not to mention gorgeous. That magical Mediterranean air really makes the scenery sparkle.

I included quite a few photos below to round out the Israel experience. This herbaceous salad is just right if you’re craving a light, healthy salad or side while we wait for spring. Tender, cubed butternut replaces the traditional tomatoes and I added some cranberries for intrigue. Adios from Austin, I’ll be posting soon from Kansas City!

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Tahini Date Shake & Tel Aviv

Rich and decadent, dairy-free tahini date shake recipe - cookieandkate.com

Our month in Austin is coming to a close far too quickly. I only have two more nights left before we pack our bags and head north. I kind of want to throw a flailing fit about it. “It’s not fairrrrrrr!”

I haven’t crossed off all the restaurants and activities on my Austin bucket list, so I’m feeling some intense pressure to take advantage of every minute left. It always kills me to leave a place without seeing it all. I just want to cross off one place on my list so I can move on to the next, but that’s not going to happen with Austin. It rarely happens that way. I almost always want to go back! There’s always more to see and do, isn’t there?

bananas, dates and tahini

I feel the same way about Austin as I do about my trip to Israel last fall. I’ve been meaning to tell you more about it since my pomegranate salad post, but it was such an overwhelmingly fast and beautiful eight days that it’s been difficult to put the experience into words. Sharing my experience is made even more challenging by the political situation in Israel. I’m not qualified to explain it and even if I were, I certainly couldn’t sum up millennia of history in one blog post. I can only tell you about my experience, so keep reading if you’d like to hear and see more.

I have so many photos to share that I decided to break up the trip into a couple of posts. First up? Tel Aviv, Israel’s colorful city on the Mediterranean Sea, which is where we spent the majority of our eight days in Israel. The weather was warm and sunny, which was much appreciated after a week in Portland. It’s a healthy, active city with an impressive variety of vegetarian/vegan restaurants. One of my favorite experiences was our private yoga session on a rooftop!

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Southwestern Kale Power Salad with Sweet Potato, Quinoa & Avocado Sauce

Healthy and hearty Southwestern kale power salad recipe - cookieandkate.com

Don’t you hate it when your brilliant ideas don’t pan out? I’ve spent the week in the kitchen and I don’t have much to show for it. It’s maddening, I tell you. But, if anyone is going to end up with lackluster homemade meals, let it be me. I don’t want any precious avocados or maple syrup going to waste in your kitchens on my behalf.

sweet potato and kale

Ali and I were both in sour moods on Tuesday after spending the afternoon sharing pans and sighing at our resulting recipes. We were so frustrated that we almost decided to stay in and watch more of The Blacklist on Netflix, but! We reminded each other that our evenings in Austin are dwindling. I traded my yoga pants and sandals for skinny jeans and booties and we headed out.

Dinner was pretty good. I just ordered a salad. Our waiter surprised me with a free dessert (griddled cornbread and bourbon ice cream, hello) and the night got better from there.

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Parmesan-Crusted Cauliflower Steaks with Marinara

Parmesan crusted, roasted cauliflower "steak" on spaghetti with marinara. This is a super simple, healthy weeknight dinner! cookieandkate.com

Growing up, my younger brothers and I didn’t make dinner easy for our mom. We could agree on a very short list of menu items, including pizza, pasta and peanut butter sandwiches (white bread, hold the crust!). We ate more spaghetti with marinara sauce for dinner than anything else. It was the meal I made for myself when Mom made something I didn’t like (cough cough, steak).

cauliflower and spaghetti

This cauliflower and spaghetti dish is a throwback to my childhood dinners. These days, I opt for whole grain pasta because it keeps me feeling full for so much longer, and I like to add as much vegetables as pasta. I’ve been really into roasted cauliflower this winter and it’s the perfect, hearty and healthy addition to this classic comfort meal.

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13 Healthy Make-Ahead Breakfast Recipes

13 healthy make-ahead breakfast recipes - cookieandkate.com

Who here eats breakfast every morning? I do! It’s really not an option for me. I’ll turn into a shaking, starving, mumbling mess a few hours into the day if I skip it. Since my breakfast is mandatory (and I don’t like cereal, I know I know), I’ve found quite a few staple grab-and-go breakfasts over the years.

I’ve learned that breakfast “sweets” are not all created equally. Simple carbohydrates like all-purpose flour pancakes and pastries give me the shakes. Whole grains like oats keep me going for hours, especially when combined with nuts (or nut butter), yogurt and/or eggs. You’ll find a variety of healthy options below. What are your go-to breakfast recipes?

Before I go, here are some notes on storage and reheating: Muffins, pancakes, waffles and granola freeze well. Just let them cool and transfer them to freezer bags, squeezing out as much air as reasonably possible before sealing them up. I reheat my muffins and pancakes in the microwave (don’t overdo it, or they’ll get tough). If you have the foresight to let them defrost at room temperature or in the refrigerator, you can warm them in a low temperature oven. I reheat my frozen waffles in the toaster (again, don’t overdo it or you’ll burn your waffles). Granola doesn’t require any defrosting.

Morning glory oatmeal - cookieandkate.com

No. 1: Megan’s Morning Glory Oatmeal
Gluten free and vegan

Creamy, steel-cut oatmeal is a fantastic make-ahead option. Just make a big batch and store it in the refrigerator for later. Gently reheat it in the microwave or on the stove with a splash of milk (almond milk is great). I like to serve mine with a dollop of plain yogurt to up the creamy factor and protein content.

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