Strawberry Crowns

My favorite time of year, summer, when fresh produce is abundant.  Each weekend I get to store something wonderful for the future months.  This week my husband and I froze and dehydrated about forty pounds of fresh strawberries.  We've already started on the cherries, but I expect to be spending the weekend preparing more cherries for drying and freezing.  Then I'll be working on tomatoes and then peaches.  it makes for some busy weekends, but it's so worth it not to have to go to the grocery store as much in the winter.

The fresh organic produce is starting to show up at the farmer's market.  We picked up some fresh organic cucumbers, zucchini, some golden beets, and lots of fresh greens Saturday.  We spent the day Sunday listening to the Blues Festival broadcasted from Portland with the windows open working on a little kitchen organization project.  I have more things to store now that I've started teaching plant based cooking and doing cooking demos.  I need to get more organized in the kitchen.  Very soon, there will be an abundance of vegetables to clean, process, and/or give away.  We are so blessed.

I picked some nice oregano from our garden and pureed it and froze it for use in the winter.  That's the first time I've done this.  I got the idea from one of my FB friends.  What a great idea!  I think I'll do this with basil and rosemary too.  I just cleaned and removed the stems, added a little filtered water and pureed the oregano.  Then added a touch of avocado oil in the bottom of the ice cube tray and froze.  Now I have little herb pellets anytime I want them.

I did take some time to make a nice Sunday meal though.  I made a tofu piccata with super firm tofu.  I love this ingredient, it's so easy to marinate and saute or grill.  It holds together well and really has a hearty texture.  The white wine and lemon combined with the capers made for a very nice summery meal.  I steamed some fresh corn and zucchini and sauteed some baby portabellos in toasted sesame oil.

Tofu Piccata

4 - 6 ounces linguine pasta, I used a gluten free quinoa pasta
10 ounces super firm tofu
sea salt and pepper
3 TB flour (A gluten free flour can be used, brown rice flour, oat flour, etc.)
2 TB vegan margarine, I use Organic Earth Balance
¼ cup white wine
juice of 1 lemon (about 2 tablespoons)
2 TB capers
4 TB chopped Italian parsley

  1. Slice tofu into 1/8" cutlets, salt and pepper each side, dredge in the flour.
  2. Cook linguine according to directions.
  3. Meanwhile, heat a pan to medium-high heat and add 1 tablespoon vegan margarine.  Add the tofu slices and cook for about 2 minutes on each side or until golden.  Remove from pan.
  4. Deglaze the pan with the white wine.  Squeeze the lemon juice and add the capers, stiffing to remove any cooked-on bits from the pan.  Remove from the heat and add half the parsley and the remaining 1 tablespoon of vegan margarine, stirring until melted.
  5. Top the linguine with the tofu and drizzle the sauce over.  Sprinkle the remaining parsley over and around the plate.


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