When Alicia of Jaybird Blog approached me to see if I'd be interested in collaborating on an "Anti-Cooking" series I immediately wanted to do it - I love the idea of cutting down on cooking time in the summer (any excuse to not turn on my oven!) and it's such a good opportunity to force me to think outside the box when it comes to meal ideas (and hopefully be healthy in the process!)
And thus was born the Anti-Cooking series! Check out our blogs every Monday in the month of the July - Jaybird and I have teamed up together to bring you fresh recipes that don't involve cooking! We're just two birds on a quest to bring you good, fresh food :)
Anti-Cooking Series Day One: Avocados Two Ways
I love avocados. I remember the first time I had them was at my aunt's house. She just drizzled olive oil and sea salt over a mix with tomatoes and I was sold. For such a simple process, they're so tasty and filling and satisfying. That was the beginning of a love story for me.
There's a restaurant in town called "The Green Door" (if you're ever in Ottawa it's a must visit). It's a vegetarian's dream. Even if you're not vegetarian, you'll want to convert after eating there - they just make it seem so easy to love vegetables. This first avocado recipe comes from a dish they serve at the Green Door. Every time we've eaten there, Mike and I can't walk away without saying, "WHAT do they DO to those avocados?!" After a little investigative research (read: googling), it wasn't hard to discover their secret ingredient: Umeboshi Vinegar. It's a Japanese plum vinegar and you can get it in health food stores, and sometimes the international section of the grocery store. I've only experimented with this one salad but apparently it's a miracle ingredient in all kinds of dishes. But the point is - it makes this salad.
Ingredients: 2 ripe avocados 1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced 1 large clove garlic crushed 1 tbsp lemon juice 2 tbsp olive oil 1 tbsp umeboshi vinegar
Directions: 1. Place the onion and garlic in a bowl. 2. Pour lemon juice and umeboshi vinegar over the onion and garlic. Let marinate for 10 minutes (or until the onion has wilted). 3. Peel and slice the avocados. 4. Just before serving, add the olive oil to the marinated onion mixture. 5. Pour over avocados. Mix gently.
And that's it! Such an easy dish!
Avocado Chocolate Pudding
So obviously avocados are delicious but I had no idea just how versatile - like who knew you could use them in dessert? This recipe was so quick and easy... and I'm going to be honest, I was surprised how tasty! The texture was just like pudding and I think it would be great as a dip for fruit or frozen onto strawberries.
6 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/4 cup raw honey
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Puree avocados, cocoa powder, honey, and vanilla in a food processor until smooth. Sprinkle pudding with salt before serving.
And that concludes day one of our Anti-Cooking Series! I hope you check back next Monday to see what's not-cooking on Jaybird Blog!
*graphic in logo taken from Creative Commons
**original avocado salad recipe here
***original pudding recipe here