Veggie Eggs Benedict over Quinoa Patties

Eggs benedict are one of those treats that I only have once in a blue moon, but sometimes there’s no other acceptable option for brunch. Love love love a good veggie Benny. And a bad one can totally ruin an otherwise fabulous morning. Those of us who are on a gluten free diet might think that means the end of Benny joy, but not so. Nice golden quinoa patties solve the muffin problem perfectly.

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Salmon Cakes

After banning meat, poultry & fish from my diet over 25 years ago (WOW, I must be getting old!?!), I’m still a bit squeamish about many fishies. I started introducing a smidge of fish back in my diet a few years ago for a variety of reasons, but am incredibly picky about freshness, flavor (as in not much fishiness), and sustainability. Check out the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch for guidelines of good fish choices and the big no-no’s. Anyway, these salmon cakes are tasty treat that even we picky folk can love.

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Light, Lemony Mayonnaise

This mayo is made with healthy raw apple cider vinegar (so is Body Ecology Diet approved) and less olive oil than many recipes. It’s a great base for aiolis with herbs, spices and other fun flavorings. Pick a flavorful, high-quality olive oil for the best taste – I have a specialty olive oil (fabulous small-scale, organic Poggio la Noce from Italy) that I use for things like this instead of the regular (still organic, extra-virgin) olive oil I use for sautéing.

2 egg yolks (the fresher the better, and of course organic free-range)
2 tablespoons raw apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup extra-virgin, super tasty olive oil

Put first 4 ingredients in a blender and blend, drizzling olive oil in slowly. Leave blender on for several seconds after all the olive oil is in. Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

Hubbard Squash Soup

This deep into winter, we’re starting to run out of the standard (in our house) local butternut squashes so have started braving some of the more exotic and storage-proof varieties. We got a hilarious 12 pound hubbard squash from our local food co-op (Idaho’s Bounty) a few weeks ago. That baby wasn’t gonna win any beauty contests (and I’m so sorry I forgot to take a picture of it so you could share in the giggles), but it turned out to be a tasty bugger! After a slightly ridiculous wrestling match with it and the butcher knife (again, wish there was a video for you), I got it in half and into the oven. I don’t have any hints for you on an easy way into these guys, but just consider it an efficient use of time–entertainment and exercise for the day while prepping dinner.

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