Easy Spring Pea Pesto Avocado Toasts (Vegan, Nut Free & Oil Free)

Spring Pea Pesto Nut Free Oil Free Avocado Toasts Caras Kitchen

Easing into spring with this colorful and quick pea pesto, how great is that vibrant green? Last week, I bought some peas thinking I would make some kind of risotto but had a rush of inspiration to make a pesto for avocado toast this morning. Just in time for #ToastTuesday. This is bright, slightly sweet and lemon-y which pairs so well with avocado. mah fav.

Early tomorrow I am off to California for the Natural Products Expo which is the largest B2B convention on the west coast in the natural products sphere. It’s the food blogger equivalent of Disneyland. Think of it as the mecca center for all things healthy food, skin care, sustainable product alternatives, and supplements. It’s damn cool and so much fun. This year will be my fourth year attending and I am really looking forward to connecting with other bloggers and like-minded individuals/companies. If you are going to be there and you are reading this please reach out, I’d love to say hi.

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Truffle Oil Mushroom Bruschetta with Fermented Garlic, Arugula & Hummus (Vegan)

Truffle Mushroom Toast with Arugala Black Garlic chickpeas caraskitchen.net

Single lady dinners coming atchu strong today! And I mean nothing about your relationship status. I just mean for those nights when you are only cooking for yourself. For me thats most nights…, I am a bit of a homebody often choosing to hang in then go out with friends or family and since I am an LDR this girl is solo ALOT. Part of it stems from the desire to control what goes in my food, part of it is about saving money (I am a supporter of the saying “money looks best in the bank”), and part of it is because I might afterall be an introvert. Whatever it may be, I am often cooking for one.

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One Bowl Almond Butter Banana Bread (Gluten Free and Vegan)

Gluten Free Vegan Banana Bread Caras Kitchen 2

When there are two banans turning browner by the minute on your counter, it only makes since to either freeze them for smoothies or whip up banana bread. I chose the latter. One bowl magic inspired by my girl minimalist baker, cause lets face it, doing dishes can suck and gluten/free vegan so as many people as possible can enjoy this delicious baked good. All about inclusivity here on the blog, none of that you can’t sit with us bs.

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Cauliflower Fried Rice with Fresh Herbs (GF, Optional Vegan)

Cauliflower Fried Rice with Fresh Herbs caraskitchen.com

It seemed fitting to share this recipe now since today marks 1 month since officially being done at Superette Cafe. Before deciding to sell the cafe I was in the process of creating Take Home Meal plans and this was one of the recipes. It’s perfect for meal prep/planning because it actually tastes better the next day and keeps well in the fridge. Lets face it -it’s perfect for anyone (myself included) who wants a lazy/fancy dinner after a long day so double this recipe and eat well all week long. Its super easy and tastes gooood.

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Savor Dining- Comtemplative Gastronomy Pop Up Dinner Recap

vegan coconut cake with almond, cocoa and edible flowers.

Something unique is happening in a mid-century style apartment complex tucked away in Scottsdales trendy Old Town neighborhood: A mindfulness based dining experience with ingredient driven cuisine called Savor Dining. This is not your typical pop-up and it couldn’t be more distinct from the club scene only a couple miles away blasting obnoxious music with too much bass (no offense if you like that part of town, its just not for this girl). Background tunes were by the like of Martin Denny and Bela Bartok, and yet somehow the event did not feel uptight or bougy rather it was evident that every detail was thought out and executed with care.

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San Juan, Puerto Rico (Vegan) Food & Travel Diary

On the south east side of the Carribean between the North Atlantic Ocean and the Carribean Sea lies an island that is 100 miles long and 35 miles across. When you land in Puerto Rico and walk out of the terminal the last place you might think you are is in the United States, but in 1898 after the Spanish-American war we appropriated Puerto Rico under the terms of the Treaty of Paris. Now Puerto Ricans are natural born citizens of the United States. On the island they take US dollars and more people here speak perfect english than in Los Angeles (at least that was our experience). As a US Citizen, this is a fantastic place to visit. There are no customs lines to go through at the airport and a passport is not needed to travel to this colorful, richly cultured and majestic place.

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Summer Pasta with Lemon-Thyme Mushrooms and Arugula and an Update

summer pasta with lemon-thyme mushrooms and arugula3

its been exactly 6 months since my last blog post. A part of me wants to have this dramatic reaction and make it mean something that i stopped blogging on a regular basis. like i slacked off, got lazy. The other part of me wants to be compassionate, understanding and realize that sometimes life happens. you quit your job, move states, go through a tough breakup, and open a cafe. sometimes that’s what gets in the way of wordpress. i realize now how much blogging was a creative outlet for me when i used to spend my weekdays making the lives of attorneys easier. its no surprise that on my time off i cooked, photographed and blogged. now that i do what i love for work i don’t necessairly need an outlet hence the blog falling to the wayside. i get to create recipes and cook all day for work. hello dream. sometimes i get a rush of nostalgia for my previous life but can shake it rather quickly when i realize that having a fancy sounding job and making a lot of money is the boobie prize…, i wasn’t fullfilled. my life is about sharing healthy, sustainable, delicious food with my community. its about creativity, love and self expression. i do miss la, though. i don’t feel nearly at home in phx. i feel as though i have been sent on location for a film shoot and once the project is complete ill be back in the city. at least thats the plan. i can’t stay away for too long so i make short trips back as often as possible and this last one something pretty magical happened.

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Savory Breakfast Bowl (Gluten Free and Vegan)

Savory Breakfast Bowl

It’s 2016 and sort of hard to believe that another year has passed by. Can you? Maybe you’re just as shocked as I am. Maybe not? I always find the holidays and year end to be a time of reflection filled with notaslgia but I am at a turning point in my life. 2015 will be remembered as the year I distingushed what I am committed to going forward as I continue to shed the skin of my former self. I am becoming a grown lady. It will be the year that I realized “someday” does not exists and I only have right now to chase my dreams. There were many accomplishments and triumphs but the biggest one was finally quitting my corporate job to take a leap of faith into entrepreneurship. I am opening up a cafe and I am scared as hell but nothing great comes from comfort zones and lets just shout from the roof tops because I officially stepped outside of mine! The future is uncertain but it is exciting and I can not wait to see what 2016 has in store.

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Vegan Baked Ziti Pizza

Baked Ziti Pizza #vegan 4

I am clearly not on a low carb diet anymore, that was soo 2005. And screw diets anyways, they don’t work. That being said this is truly a hearty indulgent dinner but so much fun and oh so good.  On my way home from Chicago after Thanksgiving I was watching Diners, Driver In’s and Dives on the plane and one restauranter offered a pizza with pasta on top. My Italian heart went through the roof and immediately decided I needed to make a vegan version for the blog. So Voila! I give to you Vegan Baked Ziti Pizza. Traditionally a baked ziti is pasta that is slightly under cooked and then finished off in the over to al dente with loads of cheese and meat. This is similar such that the pasta is baked but while on top of an already cheesey pizza. The result is rather delectable!

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Persimmon and Basil Creme Galette

Persimmon and Basil Creme Galette #vegan 9

This past month I’ve found myself in aggressive moods propelled by moments of angst over the impending changes at work and in my life (more on that another day). I can’t help but think the current state of our world is also a player in this game of nearly getting the best of me on a regular basis. The barrage of headlines about war and terror and red verse blue cast a shadow on my otherwise sunny disposition. How does one deal with it all? It makes me feel like I am treading water in uneasy seas.

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