Meatless Mondays: Link me, Baby!

15 Jul

link me 1

And no, I’m not talking sausage. I don’t know about you, but when the temp goes up I’m not really into warm hearty meals (we can revisit this conversation come October). I’m much happier munching on lighter fare and simplicity is the name of the game for me.  Summer foods are so delishy: I become freakishly obsessed with cherries, basil, avocado, watermelon, peaches, zucchini, and skinny margaritas this time of year.

Yep, I said margaritas. They’re a summer food too.

There is simply too much goodness floating around out there right now to only share one recipe, so you can nurse that nasty case of the Mondays while looking at these gorgeous blogs. During your lunch hour, of course.

The Cocktail: Skinny Jalapeno Margarita 

I’ve gotten quite a few emails and texts requesting more information on the skinny jalapeno margs I mentioned last week, which is totally understandable because they’re pretty amaze and they totally scream summer. So here you go. If you’re not the drinking type or aren’t in the mood for a headache,  just skip the tequila (duhhh) and add club soda for a perfy summer mocktail. Warning: these guys have a kick – don’t say I didn’t warn you!

jalepeno marg

 The Main: Basil Avocado Alfredo

I love this recipe because basil is extra sweet this time of year, and (let’s just be real for a minute here) I’ve never met an avocado I didn’t like. My vegetarian brother gave me Alicia Silverstone’s vegan cookbook “The Kind Diet” for my birthday a couple of years ago and it’s a winner. I have quite the cookbook collection yet it’s one of my very favorites, which should speak volumes (no pun intended) coming from a non-vegan. I super heart this recipe – it’s quick n’ easy and your meatiest of friends will still be impressed. I make this over spaghetti squash pasta instead of regular noodles.

kind diet

The Side Dish: Tomato Watermelon Salad with Feta and Toasted Almonds

Nothing says summer like watermelon. I actually contemplated just featuring watermelon recipes for meatless Monday today but thought we should celebrate diversity instead. That said, I couldn’t skip this one – it’s one of my go-to’s for parties and I promise that you’ll be the Belle of the Barbecue if you show up with this salad in hand.

The Desert, Option 1: Almost Vegan Zucchini Bread

I made this almost-vegan zucchini bread over the weekend and it rocked. I say almost vegan because I skipped the applesauce (a common replacement for oil in lightened up baked goods) and used Greek yogurt ’cause that’s what was in my fridge. I used a little more than the amount of applesauce that it called for. I know that is totally un-exact but you can tell if you’ve used enough by how moist the batter is. The bread batter isn’t super gooey anyway, but if it seems really dry go with your gut and add a little more. I made a handful of additional changes as well:

1. I added walnuts and dark chocolate chips. Duh.

2.I subbed half the all purpose and all of the whole wheat flour with oat flour  (just throw oatmeal in the food processor ’till it’s ground fine). My baking substitutions have a way of going oh-so-badly and I worried the oat flour might dry out the bread, but to my absolute delight  it was super moist.

3. I used melted virgin coconut oil in place of the unspecified “oil” the recipe called for.

If my substitutions freak you out or you want the vegan recipe, just follow the OG recipe. I won’t be offended in the least, promise.

And…ummm….so… if you’re really feeling decadent….I made some homemade cashew butter in the food processor and “frosted” a piece before my 11 mile run on Sunday. It was freaking amazing. Just keep in mind that while good fat is in fact good, it’s smart not to overdo it so I skipped the avocados and olive oil for the day.

The Desert, Option 2 (or hey, have both):Grilled Peaches With Rosemary & Balsamic Vinager

Grilled Peaches rank among my favorite deserts. They’re amazeballs with burrata cheese and prosciutto on a special occasion, but this simple recipe has all of the flavor and none of the saturated fat.

Grilled Peaches w/ Balsamic & Rosemary

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