Spiced Rhubarb Bread

This lightly scented rhubarb bread is a wonderful alternative to rhubarb pie or crisp. It’s absolutely divine for breakfast with a cup of coffee, as a midday treat, or topped with vegan vanilla ice cream for a scrummy dessert. However you have it, this sweet and tart dessert bread is incredibly easy and sure to please even rhubarb snubbers.  Made with olive oil and banana, it’s a little healthier than other recipes as well.

Spiced Rhubarb Bread - Produce On Parade - This lightly scented rhubarb bread is a wonderful alternative to rhubarb pie or crisp. It’s absolutely divine for breakfast with a cup of coffee, as a midday treat, or topped with vegan vanilla ice cream for a scrummy dessert. However you have it, this sweet and tart dessert bread is incredibly easy and sure to please even rhubarb snubbers.  Made with olive oil and banana, it’s a little healthier than other recipes as well.

I really love rhubarb. I know it's not super popular with everyone. However, it's ubiquitous up here in Alaska; almost every house has a giant, lumbering rhubarb plant (or two, or three) loitering outside like sentinels. In the spring, our local paper ran an a story about the blushing stalks; that even though many houses have rhubarb plants, most are inherited when the house was bought. That rhubarb, nowadays, is on the out! It's tart, it's banal, and it's just not that tasty.

To me, that's blasphemous. I adore rhubarb. I love how hardy and stubborn it is; how it'll grow anywhere and be the first plant the shine it's smiling face, welcoming in spring. I love it's giant leaves and remembering my Grandma Nancy showing me how to wear one as a hat when I was a little girl. I love it's sour and pungent aroma, and how it's flavor it makes my lips pucker with delight. I love that it can be savory or sweet and how it's wonderful in pretty much everything from muffins to stewed, on top of ice cream. It's versatile and resilient. Just like Alaskans.

I am lucky enough to have a unique Russian variety, whose leaves are shaped slightly different than the common variety. This makes me feel especially domestic, in a homesteady type of way. It's silly and frivolous, but it makes me happy in a small and odd way. 

Spiced Rhubarb Bread - Produce On Parade - This lightly scented rhubarb bread is a wonderful alternative to rhubarb pie or crisp. It’s absolutely divine for breakfast with a cup of coffee, as a midday treat, or topped with vegan vanilla ice cream for a scrummy dessert. However you have it, this sweet and tart dessert bread is incredibly easy and sure to please even rhubarb snubbers.  Made with olive oil and banana, it’s a little healthier than other recipes as well.

Spiced Rhubarb Bread

Kathleen Henry @ Produce On Parade

Published 07/03/2017

This lightly scented rhubarb bread is a wonderful alternative to rhubarb pie or crisp. It’s absolutely divine for breakfast with a cup of coffee, as a midday treat, or topped with vegan vanilla ice cream for a scrummy dessert. However you have it, this sweet and tart dessert bread is incredibly easy and sure to please even rhubarb snubbers. Made with olive oil and banana, it’s a little healthier than other recipes as well.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup unsweetened, plain soymilk
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 ¼ cup brown sugar, divided
  • ⅔ cup olive oil
  • 1 medium very ripe banana
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp chai spice or pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 cups rhubarb, chopped small
  • 1 tbsp vegan butter
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F and coat two 9x5 inch loaf pans with a nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. In a liquid measuring cup, whisk together the soymilk, lemon juice, and vanilla extract; let sit for 5 minutes.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 1 cup of brown sugar, olive oil, and the banana until very smooth. Whisk in the soymilk mixture.
  4. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking soda, and chai spice. Stir in the rhubarb until coated. Slowly stir the flour mixture into the wet mixture until just combined. Divide batter between both the loaf pans. (Can be made into 16 muffins, reduce baking time to about 25 minutes)
  5. Melt the butter in a small bowl in the microwave, about 10 seconds. Stir in the remaining ¼ cup brown sugar and cinnamon. Drizzle/scoop the mixture evenly on the top of each loaf.
  6. Bake for about 40 minutes, until slightly browned on top and springs back when gently poked. Allow to cool completely in the pan on a wire cooling rack before serving.

Yield: 2 loaves / 16 servings

Spiced Rhubarb Bread - Produce On Parade - This lightly scented rhubarb bread is a wonderful alternative to rhubarb pie or crisp. It’s absolutely divine for breakfast with a cup of coffee, as a midday treat, or topped with vegan vanilla ice cream for a scrummy dessert. However you have it, this sweet and tart dessert bread is incredibly easy and sure to please even rhubarb snubbers.  Made with olive oil and banana, it’s a little healthier than other recipes as well.
Spiced Rhubarb Bread - Produce On Parade - This lightly scented rhubarb bread is a wonderful alternative to rhubarb pie or crisp. It’s absolutely divine for breakfast with a cup of coffee, as a midday treat, or topped with vegan vanilla ice cream for a scrummy dessert. However you have it, this sweet and tart dessert bread is incredibly easy and sure to please even rhubarb snubbers.  Made with olive oil and banana, it’s a little healthier than other recipes as well.

Anouk loves rhubarb almost as much as Todd and I :)

Produce On Parade

Veggie Kale Soup w/ ‘Sausage’

The cinnamon and smoked paprika really give this hearty veggie soup a delicious, deep, and satisfying flavor. Cannellini beans and vegan sausage lend protein to help keep you full, while kale and an assortment of fresh vegetables make this a nutrient-dense meal. It’s a perfect weekday dinner and terrific, clean-eating comfort food.

Veggie Kale Soup w/ 'Sausage' - Produce On Parade - The cinnamon and smoked paprika really give this hearty veggie soup a delicious, deep, and satisfying flavor. Cannellini beans and vegan sausage lend protein to help keep you full, while kale and an assortment of fresh vegetables make this a nutrient-dense meal. It’s a perfect weekday dinner and terrific, clean-eating comfort food.

It's been raining nonstop up here in our little nook of Alaska. I absolutely love it. The drizzle, the dumping, the fog and mist, the hugging darkness; everything. I've always loved the rain though. Our newly implemented lawn is loving it too and we just got gutters on the house last week, so huzzah, just in the knick of time. I wish I could say it helped me sleep a little better; listening to the pitter patter of fat raindrops as they fall on the roof above me. Along with the sun setting earlier too, about 11:40 pm (which I know... seems really late, but it's not 2 am so I'll take it), sleep should be coming easier but it still often eludes me.  

Speaking of 2 am... Oliver is starting to sleep in his crib better, at least until waking at 2 to 5 am, which lets me sleep in ANY POSITION I WANT TO!! Nursing mommas (especially any co-sleepers) know exactly what I am talking about. It's pretty much the most amazing thing I've ever felt; stretching out in bed however I like. Normally I'm wedged laying on one side, almost falling off the bed because Oliver keeps sliding into my body divot in the Tempurpedic mattress, thus I keep scooching backwards closer to the edge. One bleary peeper is permanently cracked to ensure the covers haven't covered Oliver's face or that he hasn't rolled onto his tummy or that he is still breathing, let's be real (the checking breathing thing is no joke). 

It's important to keep this sleep-deprived body filled with loads of yummy veggies and our CSA is fantastic, I am so glad we are able to get such wonderful produce. I confess, however, it can be a bit of struggle to finish a full share between just myself and that veggie ambivalent love of mine. I vacillate between making a super healthy dish (think roasted radishes) mostly for myself and one that I know Todd will love too, like this soup! Or a spinach quesadilla, etc. This is hands down my favorite kale soup ever and believe me, I've made many renditions. It's great comfort food and perfect, cozy, rainy-weather eats. Not to mention a great way to use that scrummy CSA kale. I hope you love it as much as we do!

Veggie Kale Soup w/ 'Sausage' - Produce On Parade - The cinnamon and smoked paprika really give this hearty veggie soup a delicious, deep, and satisfying flavor. Cannellini beans and vegan sausage lend protein to help keep you full, while kale and an assortment of fresh vegetables make this a nutrient-dense meal. It’s a perfect weekday dinner and terrific, clean-eating comfort food.

Veggie Kale Soup w/ ‘Sausage’

Kathleen Henry @ Produce On Parade

Published 07/03/2017

The cinnamon and smoked paprika really give this hearty veggie soup a delicious, deep, and satisfying flavor. Cannellini beans and vegan sausage lend protein to help keep you full, while kale and an assortment of fresh vegetables make this a nutrient-dense meal. It’s a perfect weekday dinner and terrific, clean-eating comfort food.

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp vegan butter
  • ½ tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 4 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 medium red potatoes (about 215 g), diced
  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • 1 large celery stalk, diced
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 15 oz can of diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 15 oz can cannellini beans, drained
  • 1 Field Roast Italian sausage link, diced
  • 1 Field Roast Mexican Chipotle sausage link, diced (or another Italian link for no spiciness)
  • 4 sprigs of fresh thyme leaves (or ½ tsp dried thyme)
  • 1 large bunch of kale (about 10 oz), destemmed and chopped

Instructions

  1. In a large soup pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Stir in the cinnamon and paprika. Add the onions and garlic; saute about 5 minutes, until fragrant.
  2. Add the potatoes, carrot, and celery as you chop them. Saute for about 5 minutes after they are all in the pot, adding vegetable broth as needed to keep the pan from getting too dry. Pour in all the broth, tomatoes, and beans. Increase heat to high, bringing to a boil then reduce to a simmer.
  3. Stir in the sausage and thyme. Simmer about 10 minutes, until the carrots and potatoes are tender. Stir in the kale and simmer about 2 minutes until wilted.
  4. Remove from heat and add salt and pepper to taste; serve hot.

Yield: 6

Veggie Kale Soup w/ 'Sausage' - Produce On Parade - The cinnamon and smoked paprika really give this hearty veggie soup a delicious, deep, and satisfying flavor. Cannellini beans and vegan sausage lend protein to help keep you full, while kale and an assortment of fresh vegetables make this a nutrient-dense meal. It’s a perfect weekday dinner and terrific, clean-eating comfort food.
Veggie Kale Soup w/ 'Sausage' - Produce On Parade - The cinnamon and smoked paprika really give this hearty veggie soup a delicious, deep, and satisfying flavor. Cannellini beans and vegan sausage lend protein to help keep you full, while kale and an assortment of fresh vegetables make this a nutrient-dense meal. It’s a perfect weekday dinner and terrific, clean-eating comfort food.

Arugula Pesto Pasta

If you have boatloads of arugula, this is a terrific way to ensure it doesn’t go to waste. Arugula pesto has a little bite to it and packed with bold flavor. It whips up in the time it takes to boil the pasta, so it’s a terrific weeknight meal and a wonderful way to get in some extra greens!

Arugula Pesto Pasta - Produce On Parade - If you have boatloads of arugula, this is a terrific way to ensure it doesn’t go to waste. Arugula pesto has a little bite to it and packed with bold flavor. It whips up in the time it takes to boil the pasta, so it’s a terrific weeknight meal and a wonderful way to get in some extra greens!

I am so thrilled to be a part of a local, organic CSA that's only eight miles from my house! We used to get those Full Circle boxes. It's an organic CSA that's packaged up here in Alaska but includes produce from about five northwestern states; you can also get some far-reaching produce like avocados from Mexico. However, their quality seemed to be going downhill and I really wanted the produce to be actually local. Where I live, in the Matanuska Valley in Alaska, thrives a rich agricultural community and I knew I could find a great CSA out here. That's when I found Sun Circle Farms (not an ad or sponsor, just excited)! I even have a friend who works there, and it feels great supporting a small, hometown farm. 

Included in the first box were Japanese turnips, a ton of spring salad mix, rhubarb, bok choy, chives, and a ton of arugula. Using the spring salad mix for salads (Todd and I both eating one a day for a week, go greens!), I had to think of something else to do with the arugula other than using it in a salad. That's when I thought of this pesto! You can seriously use pretty much any veggie that is green for pesto. I even have a recipe on the blog broccoli pesto. Yup. 

Unfortunately, Todd hates pesto. I know right!? Seriously, who is this man!? I have never in my life heard anyone who claims to be anything other than beyond ecstatic about the stuff, myself included. Oh well, more pesto for me! #pestoisthebesto

Also, If you participate in a CSA, you're probably getting pretty similar produce as I am. Check out my social media to see what I've been making with mine for some great ideas! Sometimes it's hard to use up all that fresh produce before the next provisions roll around!

Arugula Pesto Pasta - Produce On Parade - If you have boatloads of arugula, this is a terrific way to ensure it doesn’t go to waste. Arugula pesto has a little bite to it and packed with bold flavor. It whips up in the time it takes to boil the pasta, so it’s a terrific weeknight meal and a wonderful way to get in some extra greens!

Arugula Pesto Pasta

Kathleen Henry @ Produce On Parade

Published 06/21/2017

If you have boatloads of arugula, this is a terrific way to ensure it doesn’t go to waste. Arugula pesto has a little bite to it and packed with bold flavor. It whips up in the time it takes to boil the pasta, so it’s a terrific weeknight meal and a wonderful way to get in some extra greens!

Ingredients

  • 1 lb dry penne pasta
  • 4 whole garlic cloves, peeled
  • Heaping ¼ cup walnuts
  • 8 oz fresh arugula (about 4 packed cups)
  • Small handful of fresh basil (about ¼ packed cup) (optional)
  • 3 tbsp miso paste
  • ⅓ cup vegan mozzarella
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • ¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Dash of freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil for the pasta, cook according to package until al dente; drain and set aside.
  2. Process the garlic in a food processor for about ten seconds; add the walnuts and process until finely chopped. Add the arugula and in batches, as much as the bowl can hold, and process until smooth. Process in the miso paste, mozzarella, nutritional yeast, and pepper. With the processor running drizzle in the olive oil and process until smooth. Taste and add additional pepper and salt as needed.
  3. Stir the pesto into the cooked pasta. There will be about ½ cup of pesto leftover. It’s great to add to the leftovers when reheated or save to coat boiled potatoes, use in stuffed mushrooms, or for vegan pesto scrambled tofu. Yum!

Yield: 6-8 servings

Arugula Pesto Pasta - Produce On Parade - If you have boatloads of arugula, this is a terrific way to ensure it doesn’t go to waste. Arugula pesto has a little bite to it and packed with bold flavor. It whips up in the time it takes to boil the pasta, so it’s a terrific weeknight meal and a wonderful way to get in some extra greens!

I just couldn't resist throwing up a photo of Oliver eating his first solid foods meal. Well, if rice cereal is considered 'solid' ;) He is in full-swing teething mode; two toppers and two bottom-dwellers should be popping out soon!

Where does the time go!? I feel like just yesterday we were leaving the hospital like, "Um, so are you sure we just take him? Are you coming with us? I don't think we're responsible enough for a human life! Are you sure we just walk out of here with this new human???" Somehow though, it also feels like he's always been a part of our lives. It's so strange. 

produce on parade