Herby Cauliflower Steaks with Crispy Shallots

Cauliflower Steaks with herbs and shallots

I've mentioned a few times on the blog and Instagram that I've been working on a few home decorating projects. I was totally  planning on sharing some progress pics today, as some of you have been asking. But instead here we are. There is a reason for this, and it's simple: most of my projects right now are only about 80% done. The living room for example, is almost there, but I still need to sand three shelves, find a secure way to drill into some brick, and even when that's complete, add the finishing touches that will give the room some warmth. 

Cauliflower Steaks with herbs and shallots

There is no need to gloss over anything-- house projects are not always easy and you usually run into a few road blocks! As I type, Oliver is in the attic above me sealing our attic to make the whole home more energy efficient and that job is no simple task. 

My dad came over for dinner a few weeks ago and asked if I was still cooking, or if these projects have consumed my time. The honest answer is that I am definitely cooking less, but that I could never give it up completely. I need my daily dose of stove time to stay sane. One of my favorites right now: Cauliflower steaks brushed with oil, garlic, and herbs, seasoned with salt and pepper, and topped with fried shallots.  I'm a big cauliflower fan to begin with, and these steaks are one delicious way to maximize the crispy edge effect. 

Also, fried shallots. Always a yes.

herb Cauliflower Steaks
Cauliflower Steaks with herbs and shallots

Herby Cauliflower Steaks with Crispy Shallots

Paleo, Primal, Gluten-Free, Grain-Free    |       |    Print This Recipe

Slices of cauliflower are brushed with oil and seasoned with garlic and herbs.

Serves: 2   |    Total Time:



Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh sage leaves
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast (or, if you prefer, parmesan)
  • Salt & Pepper
  • For crispy shallots:
  • 1 shallot
  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 450°F. Remove leaves and stem from cauliflower head. Using a large knife, cut the head of cauliflower into even slices, about 1/2 to 1 inch thick. Place on baking sheet. (Note: at the edges, your slices may not hold together as there is no inner stem in this part. I just put the smaller piece on the baking sheet and cook them with the large pieces).
  2. Mince garlic and herbs, and place in small bow. Add oil, and stir. Use a brush to spread mixture over cauliflower steaks. Sprinkle each piece with pepper to taste (I’m not big on pepper— I know crazy- so I take it easy here).
  3. Place baking pan in oven and bake until cauliflower is tender and the edges begin to brown, about 20 minutes.
  4. While the cauliflower cooks, free the shallots: peel the outer paper from the shallots and slice off the rooty end and discard. Use a shard knife to cut the shallot into thin slices. In a skillet, heat avocado oil. Once oil sizzles, add shallot slices and cook for several minutes, until they turn golden to medium brown. Use a slotted spoon to remove them from the oil and set on a dish. Discard excess oil.
  5. Remove cauliflower from oven, and season with salt and nutritional yeast (or shred on a bit of parmesan if you prefer). Top with fried shallots and serve hot.

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Secret Garden Relaxation Tea

Relaxation Tea

“If you look the right way, you can see that the whole world is a garden.” ― Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden

It started with a french press. Then, my roommate and I purchased a tiny little espresso machine at Target. It was just barely small enough for our micro-kitchen, but we made it work. We'd whisk up some milk for a bit of froth, and add some flavored syrup to our joe. 

When summer came, and we no longer wanted steamy drinks, we made our own cold brew. I'd stir cocoa powder and cinnamon into my grounds, and we'd sit by the pool sipping away. That cold brew was so smooth, we could easily drink a whole liter in one sitting. It took about 3 months to take me from coffee hater to coffee lover, and then I was hooked.

Relaxation Tea

At some point I realized just how much caffeine I was drinking, and I decided I probably needed to stop--I was running more, and needed more sleep as well as more water. I gave up coffee entirely, went "cold turkey". 

Talk about a struggle! I'll never live down the one day that my dad scored tickets to see Ira Glass. In the car, I told him how I was giving up coffee and felt great about it. An hour later, listening to Ira Glass (whom I adore, and am constantly inspired by,) I fell asleep. Right there, in my chair. I missed most of the show, but man did I sleep well that night. 

Since I've recovered from my caffeine withdrawal -- I drink mostly tea (spicy chai lattes!), but I do enjoy a good cup of coffee once or twice a week. Instead of drink bottomless mugs of cold brew, I drink teas like this one: Secret Garden Relaxation Tea. With chamomile, lavender, lemon balm, and spearmint it's beckons visions of a garden. A secret garden, where you can let it all go and just breath. 

Relaxation Tea

Secret Garden Relaxation Tea

Paleo, Gluten-Free, Grain-Free    |       |    Print Friendly and PDF

Yield: 1 cup dried tea    |    Total Time:



Ingredients:

  • 6 tablespoons chamomile
  • 4 tablespoons lavender
  • 2 tablespoons licorice
  • 4 tablespoons lemon balm
  • 2 tablespoons spearmint

Directions:

  1. Place all ingredients in a jar and toss to combine.
  2. To make tea/tisane, put 1 teaspoon of herb blend into a tea strainer for every 1 cup of water. Fit tea strainer into tea pot and pour boiling water over herbs. Allow to seep for 5 minutes. Serve with honey if desired.

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Chocolate Mint Tea Blend

Chocolate Mint Tea Blend

I've never figured out the whole meditation thing. I know, I know, it would probably do me a lot of good. But my patience is fleeting, my focus is like a pin ball and my energy boils over like an unattended pot on the stove. Which, some of you may take as further evidence of my need for meditation, but trust me on this: all of those things make it very had to get started. 

Everywhere I've ever looked, meditation was described as simply not thinking or clearing your mind, or for beginners like me, focusing on something simple, like your breaths. It's a beautiful thought, it really is, but do you know how long I last simply not thinking

Chocolate Mint Tea Blend

If your guess was you don't, then you nailed it. 

But then I was out at dinner, and someone described meditation in a totally new way: it's focusing your energy on visualizing the best expression of your compassion.

I'm just going to let that sink in for a minute there. 

Chocolate Mint Tea Blend

Ok, did that resonate with you at all? Guys, this makes me want to meditate! I also now have this voice following me around, one that just pipes in every once and a while. Was that the best expressions of compassion you've got? 

Anyways, I've always found I can more successfully focus my energy into one thing if I have a cup of tea in hand. Trying not to think about anything is also easier with a cup of tea in hand, especially one that is soothing. You know how crazy I am about chocolate, so you can imagine that this tea is right up my alley. ❤︎

Chocolate Mint Tea Blend

Chocolate Mint Tea

Paleo, Gluten-Free, Grain-Free    |       |    Print Friendly and PDF

Yields: 1 cup finished tea blend; 48 cups brewed tea   |    Total Active Time:



Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup cacao nibs
  • 2 tablespoons desiccated coconut
  • 1 teaspoon whole cloves
  • 1/4 cup spearmint
  • 1/4 cup peppermint

Directions:

  1. Using a clean coffee grinder (make sure there’s no leftover coffee grounds in it) or a mortar and pestle, grind the cacao nibs just slightly— until they’re broken up. Don’t not grind them all the way into a powder. Then, place ground cacao nibs, coconut and cloves in a small sauce pan. Place sauce pan on the stove top over medium-low heat. Gently toast the spices/coconut, stirring occasionally until ingredients become fragrant. Remove from heat.
  2. Once cooled, combine the cacao nibs, coconut, and cloves with the spearmint and peppermint leaves in a 1-cup jar. Place lid on jar, and shake until everything is combines and well distributed.
  3. To make a cup of tea: Heat 1 cup of water to a boil. Put 1 teaspoon of tea blend into a tea strainer, and place over mug. Pour water through tea, and allow to seep for 5 minutes. Remove tea strainer, sweet tea to taste, and enjoy. (Scale this to make a whole pot of tea using the ratio 1 teaspoon tea blend to 1 cup hot water)

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