Maple Tamari Roasted Tempeh Brunch Bowl

This post was created in partnership with Amano Foods

Hello friends! This week has been more like summer than spring, but I have to say I am enjoying the excuse to start wearing shorts and sipping on iced almond milk lattes! The sudden change in weather has definitely caused an upswing in the amount of people who need their gelato fix, so work has been busier than ever these past few days. Honestly though, I prefer when it is busy and there are just crowds of happy people looking for a sweet + cold treat. 

I don't think I spoke about it much in this space, but during the school year in Montreal I started going to the gym and began a (simple yet totally awesome) weight training routine. I'd seen a few people around the internet demonstrating their weight lifting routines and it really inspired me to try it out. The program that I was doing was hard, sweaty, effective, and really fun! I hardly ever had to force myself to get up off the couch and work out, I loved it so much. A few months and a season later here in Toronto, and things feel different. I am still craving the active routine that I was doing in Montreal, but the vibe of the YMCA here just isn't the same. Maybe it is because I got so used to the space I was in, but when I tried it out in Toronto it just didn't click in the same way. Which is totally fine! Lately, I've been running outside and doing a few yoga classes here and there. It is what my body is craving, and to be honest it feels a million times better to be running outside along beautiful shaded streets (or by the lake!) than it does to be stuck on a treadmill in the gym. It has been a good lesson in flexibility and really listening to what I want, instead of what I think I am supposed to be doing. 

So. This recipe. I AM SO STOKED TO BE SHARING IT WITH YOU! I have been using Amano Foods' products for a few years now. I love every one of their products that I have tried, and ALWAYS have a container of their miso in my fridge. About a month ago I posted this recipe, and the Amano team was kind enough to reach out to me about a possible collaboration. I was so excited! I am a big supporter of local small businesses, and Amano is just that. It is a family business that has expanded since its initial creation, but remains within that same family to this day. The tamari I used for this recipe is excellent. It has the familiar salty/umami taste, but with complex undertones and a short, legible ingredient list. I love this company, they really embody my own philosophy about food.

This brunch bowl is the perfect quick fix if you want something kind of fancy, but don't feel like going out. It is simple to put together, and just so delicious. I can see it becoming a staple around here, especially for those lazy Sunday mornings when you don't even want to put on pants. Also, big shout out to my Dad for providing the space, prop help, and recipe testing for this post (and also for being an awesome Dad). Love you!

If you make one of my recipes, tag @spiceandsprout in your photo! Also, follow me on snapchat (mayadria) for sun filled adventures <3

Maple Tamari Roasted Tempeh Brunch Bowl

Serves Two

*This post is sponsored by Amano Foods. All opinions are my own and I think that their products and company are totally awesome! 

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Ingredients

Maple Tamari Roasted Tempeh

Sweet Potato Fries

  • 1 small sweet potato 
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika 
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne 
  • salt and pepper to taste

To serve

  • a handful of arugula per bowl
  • drizzle of olive oil
  • squeeze of lemon juice
  • chives and hemp seeds to garnish (optional)

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Notes

Start marinating the tempeh at least one hour before cooking (or for up to 6 hours in the fridge). Slice the tempeh into thin strips. In a small mixing bowl or flat bottomed dish, mix together the maple syrup, tamari, and sesame oil. Fully coat the tempeh strips in the mixture and then allow them to marinate in the fridge for at least one hour. 

Preheat the oven to 375 and line two baking sheets with parchment paper, set aside. Chop the sweet potato into thin fry like pieces and then toss with olive oil, smoked paprika, cayenne, salt, and pepper. Arrange the sweet potato fries on the baking sheet so that they are not touching. Put the tray in the oven and bake for 20 - 25 minutes, until crispy brown. As the sweet potatoes begin to bake, lay out the marinated tempeh strips on the second prepared baking sheet. Place the tempeh in the oven once the sweet potatoes have been baking for about 10 minutes. Bake the tempeh and sweet potato fries for an additional 10 - 15 minutes, or until the tempeh is golden brown and the fries are crispy. You should rotate and flip both the tempeh and the fries halfway through baking. 

To serve, place handfuls of arugula in each bowl. Distribute the fries and tempeh between the bowls and garnish with fresh chives and hemp seeds. Drizzle some olive oil and lemon juice over each bowl and serve warm! 

Roasted Broccoli + Sauerkraut Quesadillas

I was recently in a yoga class where the teacher spoke about our inhales and exhales as a kind of radiating energy. She instructed us to inhale and feel as if we were bringing everything into ourselves - into our heart's centre. When you exhale, she continued, imagine that your exhale is radiating outwards past the the people around you, out of the studio, reaching out to the ends of the city, country, and world. That exhale can stretch out to your friends and family, push the boundaries of what you know and extend far from your body. Sitting in the midst of that stillness, I felt an intense and tangible force emanating from the people gathered there. It was silent, but an active and buzzing silence that made me sure every person in the room was fully engaged. It is a rare thing to find yourself in a space where it feels like everyone is paying attention. Each mind was focussed and alert, but in an individual and quite personal way. I don't often find myself receptive to these kinds of situations, but this moment felt true to me, and left a lasting impact on the way I engaged with my own body and breath at that moment. 

To be honest, I have never really been into astrology and energy practices in a serious way, it just isn’t my thing. Lately though, I’ve been thinking a lot about the transfer of energy between people. It can be a simple thing, like the way you outstretch your arm to reach someone or the sudden moment of connection as you meet eyes. Or, it can simply be your breath, extending the radius of your person far past your physical being. There are so many conversations and spoken practices about energy that have never reached me in a true way, but really feeling that breath in my body, passing over the stillness of the room as everyone collectively exhaled, THAT was something I could feel deep within myself and knew to be my own truth. 

These quesadillas are another simple gesture. Getting back into the routine of working full time and spending my days serving other people food can make me less engaged with my own eating habits. I wanted to make something that was easy, filling, healthy, but also comforting. I had been planning a sort of gluten free savoury crepe situation (still coming soon I hope) but it was turning out to be more complicated than I had time for. Then, I saw these beautiful sourdough naans at one of my favourite grocery stores and it all sort of came together. These quesadillas are crispy, fresh, gooey with vegan cheese, and all around a crowd pleaser. Trust me, you are going to love them once you give them a try. You can even see how excited my brother was about them that when I asked him to hand model for me (thanks Sasa!) he couldn't resist just taking a bite! Let me know if you try out a recipe, and have a great week friends :) 

Roasted Broccoli + Sauerkraut Quesadillas

Makes 8 triangular pieces

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Ingredients

Miso Cashew Cheese

  • 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked overnight
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 4 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbsp miso paste
  • 1 tsp tapioca starch
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 tsp salt 

Quesadillas

  • 1 medium sized head of broccoli, cut into florets
  • 1 bell pepper, julienned
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 4 pieces of naan (tortillas work too)
  • 1/2 cup sauerkraut (or to taste)
  • salt and pepper to taste

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Notes

Preheat the oven to 400 and line a baking tray with parchment paper, set aside. 

Combine all of the ingredients for the cashew cheese sauce in a high powered blender and blend until smooth (about 2 minutes for me, but it depends on the blender). Pour sauce into a small pot and place over medium heat. Whisk the mixture continuously. After about a minute, the sauce will start to form clumps and become very lumpy, don't panic! This is good. Continue whisking until the clumpy mixture forms a smooth, thick paste. The cheese will start to come away from the sides of the pot and form a mass in the middle, when this happens it is finished. Remove from heat and set aside. 

Toss the broccoli florets with sesame oil, salt, and pepper and transfer to the prepared baking sheet. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes, or until crispy.

To assemble the quesadillas, heat a cast iron pan over medium heat. Take one piece of naan and spread about 2 tbsp of cashew cheese on one side. Layer the roasted broccoli, sliced bell pepper, and sauerkraut and then drizzle with more cheese sauce. Place the other piece of naan over top like you are making a giant sandwich. Place the quesadilla onto the cast iron pan and press it down with a pot lid. Cook on each side for 2 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from heat and slice into four pieces. Serve hot! These will keep in the fridge for a couple of days, but they are best when fresh. 

Spiralized Beet Noodles w/ Arugula Almond Pesto

How many cookies are too many cookies to eat at once? I came home from work today and my brother had just pulled a batch of oatmeal chocolate chip cookies out of the oven (THESE cookies actually). I am pretty sure I gobbled down four cookies before promptly hopping on my bike and heading over to the park to meet my friend. We walked around the Trinity Bellwoods Farmers Market for a while, I had a bourbon cider popsicle (!!!!) and then we settled down in a patch of sunshine in the grass. Suffice to say, Toronto is treating me well :)

I feel like I have so much to share, but at the same time nothing to put into words. It is the simple things that are bringing me so much joy lately: enjoying a rainy afternoon at work, biking to various markets across the city, making dinner as a family, sipping beers at the picnic table in the backyard, feeling the crisp spring air breeze gently against my bare ankles as I walk down the street. I am so stoked for patio sangria and even more friends to come back to the city! I know this may seem like an obvious/universal sentiment, but one of my favourite things about summer is the long stretches of daylight hours. I can spend all day at work and then get off and still have a whole evening of sunshine and outdoor strolls to enjoy. 

Without a better transition, I will now tell you a bit about this recipe. It is REALLY easy and REALLY yummy. Okay, that's all, bye. But actually, it is really tasty and literally takes 20 minutes to put together. I've been wanting a spiralizer for so long, and the promise of farmers market veggies finally convinced me to get one. I love it! When my Amazon box arrived the only vegetable in my fridge worthy of spiralizing was a beet, so this recipe was born. It is perfect for a spring evening when you're not feeling something heavy but still want a substantial meal. The earthy flavour of the beets pairs so well with the fresh, garlicky pesto. I am super excited to share this one with you, it is one of my favourites yet. 

If you make one of my recipes, tag @spiceandsprout in your photo! Also, follow me on snapchat (mayadria) for sun filled adventures <3 

Spiralized Beet Noodles w/ Arugula Almond Pesto

Serves two as a main, and four as an appetizer

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Ingredients

Arugula Almond Pesto

  • 4 cups packed arugula 
  • 1 cup packed basil
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 cup almonds 
  • 1 tsp salt 

Beet Noodles

  • 4 medium sized beets, peeled
  • Optional: slivered almonds and nutritional yeast to serve

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Notes

To make the arugula almond pesto add all of the ingredients to a food processor and pulse until combined. I found that pulsing until the almonds were chopped and then blending on high worked the best and yielded the smoothest results. Set pesto aside. 

To make the beet noodles spiralize your beets and then steam them for 5 minutes. The steaming is optional, but I found that it made them more noodley and took away some of the intense raw beet flavour. 

Place the steamed beet noodles on a plate and top with pesto, slivered almonds, and nutritional yeast. The beet noodles are best when fresh, but they store reasonably well in the fridge for a couple of days. The pesto can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one week. 

Minty Spring Smoothie w/ Creamy Cashew Butter

I am writing to you from the kitchen in my mum's house in Toronto! We made it. The last few days have been so lovely and grounding. We packed up our apartment in a whirlwind of boxes, cake, and spring celebrations and drove the 550km from Montreal to Toronto (or rather, my mum drove) with good music and excitement in the air. I've always had a soft spot for that drive, having travelled the route so often over my four years of school. There is something so humble about the landscape, such beauty in unassuming places. Each farmhouse and field is slightly different, each one suspending the acres of land in a different way. Even though the highway passes so many of these farms, every time we saw a cow or a flock of sheep we would point with excited fingers, giggling as we drove by. I've talked about my love of mountains and need for new adventures, but taking the trip back home always reminds me of how much this place means to me. I feel a sense of home in the truest way - I firmly believe that home can exist in many different places, and that home is really what you bring to a place, but having said that I never feel as strongly planted in the earth as I do when come back to this city (Toronto). Its familiarity and friendly faces contain an aspect of home that cannot ever be uprooted. I am excited to find home in different places across the country, even across the world, but it feels good to know that this place will always be here, standing strong. 

As the weather warms, I've been really into different smoothie combinations. I whipped this one up the other day and couldn't believe how well the mint paired with the cashew butter and fruit. I've always been a fan of mint in fruit salad, but I hadn't tried it in a smoothie. Let me tell you, it works amazingly! This smoothie has the bright freshness of spring days, while still retaining that creamy comfort that the chilly winds leave me craving. What are your favourite spring combinations? I am excited to test out some more recipes that incorporate both the fresh and the cozy :)

Minty Spring Smoothie w/ Creamy Cashew Butter

Serves two

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup frozen raspberries
  • 1/2 cup frozen mango
  • 1 tbsp cashew butter
  • 2 sprigs mint
  • 1 - 1 1/2 cups cashew milk
  • 1/2 - 1 tbsp maple syrup (depending on desired sweetness)
  • 1 tsp olive oil

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Notes

Combine all ingredients in a high powered blender and blend until smooth. Serve immediately! 

Chocolate Olive Oil Cake w/ Tahini Blood Orange Coconut Cream Frosting // Blog Birthday!

It has officially been one year since I pressed publish on my first blog post! Usually time passes so quickly, and I was tempted to write "it feels like yesterday" but I don't think that's really true. This year has felt long. Not in a bad way, but I feel like so much has changed since this time last year. Being in University, the year is always divided up the same: four months of school, winter break, four months of school, summer break, four months of school etc. That hasn't changed, but something about the fact that this was my last semester as a full time student marks a shift in how I consider going forward. This time last year I packed up those little baby thumb cakes in a container and hiked (maybe an over statement) up the mountain with Sebastian. We ate them while looking out over the city, and it was lovely. This year we ate cake, surrounded by boxes and suitcases, trying to finish every bit of food in the fridge, scrambling to pack up in time. It was good. It is good. And it really does feel like a whole year has gone by. I think it's a bit funny that my first post was mini cakes, and this one is a freaking three layer cake! I guess next year it's going to have to fill an entire room (imagine a cake room... wow)! 

Tomorrow my mom is driving to Montreal to pick us up. We're going to be spending the summer in Toronto working, and I am super excited to connect with some of you folks! I had this whole thing planned out in my head that I was going to write. I kept thinking it over and re-working it when I couldn't sleep. It was probably a lot more eloquent than this is going to be, but I'll give it a try. I am so so grateful to every person who stops by this space. I know that that is easy to say, and it is hard to communicate tone of voice/ emotions very well here, but it really truly makes my heart soar every time one of you leaves a comment, sends me a message, or lets me know that you've made a recipe. It is the best feeling ever, and I want to thank you so much for being here with me and hanging out in this little space of mine. It still amazes me that people show up here and read my words and make my foods, so thank you. I also wanted to give a huge shoutout to Jessie from the blog Faring Well. She answered all of my questions when I first started blogging and was so kind and generous with her responses. She made me feel welcome and excited about this world of blogging, and I still look to her as an inspiration! 

Well, here it is. One year later and I am still making cake. This cake truly is a celebration cake. It is dense, chocolatey, moist, satisfying, creamy, and bright with natural flavours! My favourite part is the beautiful colour of the blood oranges on top, and the amazing taste of chocolate, tahini, and orange coming together. I actually started testing this cake almost a year ago, but somehow every time I made it I never got the pictures quite right. Once it was completely falling over, the next time the light had already faded, the next time the frosting didn't work, I think you get the idea. Suffice to say I am very excited about finally sharing it with you, and super stoked for you folks to try it out! Have a great week babes <3 

Chocolate Olive Oil Cake w/ Tahini Blood Orange Coconut Cream Frosting

Makes a 6" three layer cake - about 10 - 12 slices

Cake recipe loosely adapted from Minimalist Baker's Recipe: Vegan Chocolate Cake :) 

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Ingredients

Chocolate Olive Oil Cake

  • 1 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 1/2 cups white spelt flour + 2 tbsp arrowroot 
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup unsweetened applesauce 
  • 2 cups plant milk + 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar 
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 cup olive oil
  • 3/4 cup maple syrup
  • 100g chopped dark chocolate, melted (either in microwave or double boiler)

Tahini Blood Orange Coconut Cream Frosting

  • 2 cans coconut cream, refrigerated overnight (or preferably 2 days)
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • juice of 1 blood orange
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • orange zest and slices to decorate 

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Notes

Preheat the oven to 350 and grease three round 6” cake pans. Dust with cocoa powder and set aside. 

In a medium sized bowl combine the cashew milk and apple cider vinegar, set aside. In a large mixing bowl whisk together all of the dry ingredients (cocoa powder, flour, arrowroot, salt, baking soda, baking powder). Add the applesauce, vanilla, olive oil, and maple syrup to the bowl with the cashew/apple cider mixture and whisk to combine. Add the wet to the dry, and stir to combine. Stir in the melted dark chocolate and mix until there are no clumps and the batter is smooth. Fill the cake pans until they are 2/3 full, and bake in the oven for 35 - 40 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely before frosting. 

To make the frosting open the cans of coconut cream and scoop out the solid white cream that has risen to the top (you can discard the liquid or save it for something else). Place the coconut cream, tahini, orange juice, and maple syrup in a large bowl. Using handheld electric beaters, beat the ingredients together until they are smooth and thick, making sure there are no clumps. 

Assemble the cake! Place the first layer on a cake stand or plate and spread a third of the frosting on the top. Place the second layer on top of the frosted first layer and use half of the remaining frosting. Finally, place the last layer on the top and spread the remaining frosting over it. You can smooth it out by dipping a butter knife into warm water and running it (flat side) over the top of the cake. Decorate with orange slices. Cool in the fridge for 10 - 20 minutes to let the frosting firm up and then serve! 

Vegan Poutine Bowl w/ Miso Gravy + Green Onions

I am about to embark on a homemade fermented coconut yogurt adventure!* I've been wanting to try it for a while, and now that I am finished all of my classes (WOOO) I have the time to think about new and exciting food things. The city is so incredibly bright. I walked downtown today to hand in my last essay of the semester and the city was bustling with excitement. People are everywhere and it makes me so happy! The sky was the most intense blue and it was warm enough that halfway through my walk I stripped down to a t-shirt and strolled along the sidewalk just completely loving life. I am so stoked to spend every second out under that warmth, possibly with beer in hand and feet dangling off the edge of a balcony overlooking this beautiful city :)

I've been listening to this new podcast called Only Human and I am totally obsessed. It is all about bodies and humans and different interesting medical/personal stories. In the last year or so, I have become really interested in science, and specifically in the human body. For most of my life, I thought of myself as an 'English stream' person. I thought science was cool, but I never gave it as much academic attention as the humanities classes that I took. I was a reader, writer, artist, and overall more liberal arts inclined person. That is, until a year ago. I just had this kind of epiphany, although maybe that's not quite the right word because I think it had been coming on for a while and I just didn't realize. Bodies are fucking amazing (sorry Grandma). Being a person who has a body, I realized that I wanted to know everything about it - at least as much as I could take in at a reasonable rate. I started obsessively watching surgeries on Youtube, reading medical memoirs, studying different anatomical charts, and figuring out the best nutritional path for my body. I feel like I have crazy amounts to learn and that makes me really excited. I also have a much better idea of the path I want to take in my life, but I think I'll leave that for another post in the future, when I have more words and articulation to share with all of you. In the meantime, this podcast is keeping me entertained and engaged with this new branch of my education. I hope some of you check it out and find it as completely awesome as I do! 

I was going to start my post off with this disclaimer, but I will give it now: Poutine lovers, please don't hate me! I know that "vegan poutine" probably sends a shudder straight through your entire body. Poutine without cheese? Yeah riiiight Maya, go the heck home. Okay, so this is not your typical poutine. Maybe it isn't even poutine, but in my opinion it is so much more fun to experiment and change things up than stick to traditions. Plus, this poutine is freaking delicious! I've been making miso gravy since I figured out that it was a thing (probably a year ago) and decided it was about time to share my recipe with you. It is thick, creamy, salty, umami, pourable, and cozy. I just love the combination of the smoked paprika fries with the umami flavour in the gravy and the fresh crunch of green onions on the top. This is a very Montreal in the springtime themed recipe, and I am loving every bite of it! 

*You can follow along on snapchat (username: mayadria) and Instagram :):) 

Vegan Poutine Bowl w/ Miso Gravy + Green Onions

Serves two

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Ingredients

French Fries

  • 2 large russet potatoes
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 10 - 15 sprigs of thyme, leaves only
  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil
  • salt (apprx. 1 tsp) and pepper to taste

Miso Gravy

  • 1 cup + 2 tbsp vegetable broth (divided)
  • 2 tbsp rye flour (or whole wheat)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp miso (I like this one)
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbsp arrowroot powder
  • 2 tsp soy sauce 
  • one clove garlic, minced 

To Serve

  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • nutritional yeast flakes 
  • a handful of arugula per bowl

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Notes

Preheat the oven to 400 and line a large baking tray with parchment paper. Set aside.

Slice the potatoes into long fry shaped strips. Transfer to a large mixing bowl and toss with paprika, thyme, sunflower oil, salt and pepper. Lay fries on the prepared baking tray. For best result, don't allow the fries to touch each other (my baking tray is super small so this was unavoidable, but they still turned out fairly crunchy and didn't stick). Bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes flipping halfway, or until crispy and browned. 

While the fries are baking, make the gravy. In a small bowl, combine 2 tbsp of vegetable broth and 2 tbsp of miso, whisk to combine until it forms a clumpy paste and set aside. Combine the olive oil and minced garlic in a medium sized sauce pan over medium heat. Once the garlic starts to sizzle, wait about a minute and then add in the rye flour and arrowroot, whisk to combine. Add in the miso/vegetable broth paste while still whisking. Pour in the remaining cup of vegetable broth, soy sauce, and nutritional yeast. Whisk until smooth. Turn the heat up to high and bring the mixture to a boil and then immediately reduce to a simmer, whisking constantly. Cook for another 2-3 minutes, until the gravy is thick and coats the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and pour into a heatproof container. 

To serve, layer the bottom of each bowl with a handful of arugula. Top with fries, gravy, green onions, nutritional yeast flakes, and cracked black pepper. Serve immediately!