Food and Cooking, Photography

Foto Friday No. 7

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This might be the last “Foto Friday” since I need to keep trucking along if I want to get any closer to my finish line of accomplishments for this project. I think I’ve learned a lot about food photography, forced myself to be more thoughtful in taking pictures and setting up a shot, and I definitely have much greater respect for the amount of work it is!!

Today’s photos are of  kale salad with carrot-sesame dressing. I found this recipe for sesame carrot noodles from the blog “Clean Wellness” and whipped up a batch of just the dressing last week. I was planning to actually follow the whole recipe, but ended up tossing the dressing with a big bunch of kale, and it was delish. Like, I-ate-it-for-every-lunch-all-week-delicious. Granted–I have an unusual capacity for eating the same thing over and over without getting sick of it, but I’m already dreaming of a way to modify the recipe into a carrot sesame soup so I can justify (essentially) just eating the dressing for a meal.

Anyways–the point is–this dressing was amazing. You should definitely consider giving it a try.

I’ve also been on a bit of a coconut kick lately (helloooo, coconut butter!) so I thought, what could be better than adding some coconut into the dressing? I gave it a try today, and here you have it: my own modified, carrot-sesame dressing for a kale salad.

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Kale Salad with Carrot-Sesame Dressing

Ingredients:

1 bunch kale (washed, thinly sliced, and massaged)

2-3 carrots (washed and/or peeled and sliced)

scant 1/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut

2 tbsp. sesame seeds (or tahini, which I probably what I would have used if I wasn’t out)

2 1/2 tbsp. soy sauce

1 tbsp. fresh ginger (tip: keep ginger root in the freezer, and just cut off as needed for recipes)

1/4 c. plus 1 tbsp. white wine vinegar

2 tbsp. water

1 1/2 tbsp. sesame oil

1/2 tsp. chili pepper flakes

1 tbsp. maple syrup

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Steps

1. Put all ingredients except for kale into a blender, and blend until smooth.

2. Toss dressing with kale.

3. Enjoy. : ) It’s that simple!

The dressing will make about 1 1/2 cups. Depending on how much dressing you like and how large your bunch of kale is, you might have leftover dressing. Not that anyone’s complaining about that. : )

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Food and Cooking, Photography

Foto Friday No. 6

Experimenting with low key food photos here. It was an impromptu project inspired by how beautiful the roasted golden beets looked as I chopped them.

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Work has gotten significantly more manageable in the past week, as the project to which I’ve devoted countless hours over the past year finally launched last Sunday. So I’m planning to be a bit more faithful to this blog now…

But without further ado, a veggie-packed wheat berry salad. This salad would make a great side dish with anything grilled (summer cookouts, anyone?) or as a lighter meal option with some crunchy  veggies on the side. I mainly followed this recipe from the Kitchn, with a few minor changes:

1. Subbed wheat berries for the barley.

2. Used kale instead of chard. I didn’t cook the kale, just mixed it in with the wheat berries while they were still hot. I find that if you shred kale thin enough and mix it with an acidic dressing (like the lemon juice in this salad) you can often get away without massaging or cooking it.

3. Added all the lemon juice straight to the mixed up veggies and wheat berries, and only added 1 tbsp. of olive oil (also directly to the salad).

4. I soaked a handful of dried cranberries in white wine vinegar, then added that whole mix to the salad. The extra acidity helps brighten the whole salad, and the sweetness from the cranberries is spot on with the beets and wheat berries.

5. This isn’t entirely relevant, but I used a French feta cheese, which tasted (to me) a lot less salty than the Greek kind I normally buy. So I salted very generously.

Overall, this salad is super delicious. It tasted great at room temp, and I’m sure it will make tasty cold lunches this week, too. You could easily omit the feta (or use a vegan cheese substitute) for a vegan salad option, or use brown rice or another gluten-free alternative to make it gluten-free.

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