Recipe: Avocado Strawberry Caprese Salad (Gluten-Free + Vegan)

Okay the people who are like “Mmm yes dahling balsamic reduction” as if it’s some kind of delicate culinary masterpiece are FULL OF IT because it was so easy to make. I felt v sophisticated, and you can, too. You can also, like me, dance around the kitchen to Donna Summer’s Hot Stuff, wave around a spatula as a dancing accoutrement, and then hit yourself in the eye with a flying drop of balsamic vinaigrette reduction.*

This salad is perfect for summer in it’s ingredients, of course, but also in it’s simplicity. It’s crunchy, tart, sweet, addicting, and, perhaps most importantly, easy to make.

Ingredients

1/3 c balsamic vinegar
1 c strawberries, hulled and sliced
1 c grape tomatoes, halved
1 avocado, pitted and diced
1/3 c loosely packed basil leaves, chiffonade cut
1 1/2 t olive oil
Himalayan pink salt
 (or regular sea salt) to taste
fresh ground black pepper to taste
1 T toasted sesame seeds
1 T chopped pecans

Instructions

  1. Bring vinegar to a simmer over medium heat in a small saucepan, then reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer for ten minutes, uncovered, until it thickens and reduces in volume by about half. Set aside.
  2. Add strawberries, tomatoes, avocado, and basil to a large, shallow bowl for serving.
  3. Drizzle olive oil on salad and gently toss until just coated.
  4. Season with salt and pepper and briefly toss again.
  5. Top with sesame seeds and pecans.
  6. Finally, drizzle all balsamic reduction over the salad.
  7. Serve immediately – best enjoyed fresh!

Serves two.

Look, not everything I make is awesome, so I’m gonna start giving you my honest opinion. Avocado Strawberry Caprese Salad: 10/10

*Just kidding about that last bit, my eyes are fine. But if that did happen, I wouldn’t mind. I’d do it for Donna.

Adapted from Avocado Strawberry Caprese.


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Recipe: Parmesan Garlic Orzo (Vegetarian + Gluten-Free)

Orzo is my favorite pasta. I learned that today after looking for it in the grain section at the grocery store… where I found out it’s a grain-shaped pasta! Of course this means that traditional orzo is made with wheat, but I found a highly rated gluten-free option here.

This recipe is fast and delicious to even the most selective of palates (see: Rick). While I don’t have kids to test recipes on, Rick… kind of… counts in terms of food.

Ingredients

1 c orzo pasta
1/4 c butter (I used organic Earth Balance)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 c Parmesan cheese, shredded
2 T milk (I used organic coconut milk)
2 T fresh parsley, chopped
1/2 t sea salt
1/2 t fresh black pepper, ground

Instructions

  1. In a large pot, bring lightly salted water to boil. Add orzo to boiling water, stirring occasionally until cooked through, about ten minutes. Drain orzo and set aside.
  2. In a skillet, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add garlic and sauté until lightly browned, about 3-4 minutes.
  3. Stir orzo, Parmesan cheese, milk, parsley, sea salt, and pepper into garlic mixture.
  4. If desired, top servings with more fresh grated Parmesan.

I made it and it was eaten immediately. No leftovers for the fridge, folks! Although this would make a really good lunch at work, hot or cold.

Serves two for a main dish, four as a side.

Adapted from Parmesan Garlic Orzo.


Subscribe at the bottom of Bummed Out Baker to get my mental health musings and recipes emailed to you directly – Follow on Facebook for mental health articles and discussion – Follow on Instagram for behind-the-scenes panic attacks and my begrudging, meat-eating husband captured in the wild.

If you or someone you know needs help right now, call the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

Recipe: Roasted Beets and Sweets

 

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Ingredients

3 large beets*, peeled and diced
3 T olive oil, divided
3 sweet potatoes*, diced
1 yellow onion, diced
1 t garlic powder
1 t sea salt
1 t black pepper
1 t cane sugar**

*Bonus points if you use rainbow beets and different sweet potatoes. The more color, the better!

**Ditch the sugar to make this recipe paleo.

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  1. Preheat oven to 400ºF.
  2. In a bowl, toss beets in 1 T olive oil until coated. Distribute evenly on a baking sheet and roast for 15 minutes.
  3. Rinse the bowl, then toss sweet potatoes, onion, garlic powder, sea salt, pepper, sugar, and 2 T olive oil until coated.
  4. Mix sweet potato mixture with the beets on the baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, stir the mixture, then bake another 25 minutes until all vegetables are tender.

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Serves six.

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Adapted from Roasted Beets ‘n’ Sweets.