Brazilian Love Green Smoothie (Vegan)

Brazilian Love Green Smoothie by My Little Jar of Spices
Ugh, green smoothies. Like what’s new, right? So how about some Brazilian love, exotic fruit and samba grooves to welcome Spring and reboot your green smoothie routine? I just spent a week in Brazil visiting friends and working long-distance, and I had forgotten just how amazing the options of available fresh fruit juices and smoothies was there! Papaya and mango are like currency in this country, and forget about the insane amount of fruit you can squeeze into your happy hour Caipirinhas, from acerola to pineapple, passion fruit and cashew fruit. And man did I drink the life out of all the coconuts while I was there. I used to buy a fresh green coconut every day from a street vendor by my house who would crack it open with an actual machete and sip on it on my way to classes. Ah heaven. And just in general, I realized going back how much I had underestimated Brazil’s level of development when I lived there. I suppose I needed to go live in Peru to actually appreciate the level of comfort and the modernity of services available in Sao Paulo. I almost cried when I jumped into a taxi with a GPS or opened a restaurant menu with an actual salad section. It was really nice to go back for a few days. Now I’m in Lima for a week before going back to Cajamarca, which is cool because I never really got to discover Lima. I have been to Lima a few times but I always passed by for a couple of days or less when travelling to somewhere else and never had time to discover it though I know it’s an amazing city.

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Recipe Round-Up: 25 Most Beautiful Salad Recipes

25 Beautiful Salad Recipes Round-Up

My roommate from Sao Paulo, Lea, and I shared a similar love for bright, beautiful, colorful salads. Whenever we’d have potluck dinners or invite people over at our house, you could be sure we were on the salad making crew. We’d let our imaginations run wild and put anything that sparked our tastebuds and eyesight to make them look visually stunning and oh-so-tasty: arugula, cherry tomatoes, mango chunks, toasted almonds, figs, parmesan shavings, thinly sliced radishes and beets, bell pepper strips, sundried tomatoes, sautéed courgettes… And then as we would serve our plates, Lea would go “oh wow, the colors in this salad are amaaaazing” or plainly say “Just beautiful” with a sigh. I miss my salad buddy. Continue reading

Banana Flambée Panna Cotta (Dairy-free, Paleo, Vegan option)

Banana Flambée Panna Cotta

Oh no I didn’t. Did I put a banana flambée in a Panna Cotta dessert AND make it dairy-free too? Why yes I did. Thank me later, try it first. I know in English they’re called Banana Fosters but I just feel so posh saying “Banana Flambée” and that’s the way I’ll keep saying it in this post because I’m French so I’m allowed to use fancy snobbish culinary words. Plus I just can’t picture myself serving this dessert saying “Aaaand for dessert, Bananas Foster!”. Yes, I have to picture myself serving my desserts at a White House Fundraiser to decide on the recipe title. Continue reading

Matbucha: Morrocan Roasted Pepper and Tomato Salad

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When I was little, there were two things that I loved more than anything compared to most other children and that I could probably eat without ever getting tired of: olives and roasted peppers (can you tell I grew up in a Mediterranean family?). I also liked to eat spoonfuls of plain butter, so yes, if you were wondering, I was probably not like most children in the food department. For one, I was never full, but let’s not get into that. If you get my parents started on this topic, they’ll tell you that I would eat just about anything at the age of 2, including foie gras, snails and other odd delicacies that us French people like to indulge in. Indeed, not a picky eater at all, just give me some foie gras and champagne and I will be on my way now. Continue reading

Cookie Dough Mug Muffin, gluten-free, vegan, sugar free

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See the Cookie Dough Mug Muffin version 2.0 here.

My very first blog post was for a breakfast teacup muffin recipe that could be baked in under two minutes in the microwave for instant gratification or a very quick on-the-go breakfast, a concept which people really seemed to like, sort of to my surprise as it didn’t involve any sophisticated cooking techniques and I thought I would have to put in more effort to wow readers. But then I remembered just how blown away I was when I discovered muffins could be made in a microwave: just combine ingredients in a mug, pop in the microwave for 1-2 minutes, watch it rise in child-like astonishment with your eyes glued to the microwave door (very important part of the process) and chow down. Now, whenever I feel like a quick treat or when we have people over for dinner and everyone’s munching on delicious Italian bread rolls and I’m all left out because there’s no gluten-free version for me, I just make a 5-minute salty muffin and I can join the bread feasting party with the rest of the cool kids. Freddy also loves the concept when, after a nice and fulfilling meal I lazily turn to him and ask “want a muffin for dessert?”, and he knows it means within the next five minutes. Continue reading

Triple Nut Butter Bars (gluten-free, grain-free, vegan)

Triple Nut Butter Bars 4

This week has been a slow week, cooking-wise. I missed the farmer’s market on Sunday which ordinarily is a sacred tradition not to be foregone under any circumstances. I haven’t shopped for groceries and have been making most of my meals out of last week’s tomatoes, a couple of zucchinis and a box of eggs. Shameful, I know, but these nut butter bars – which also came together with what I found in the pantry and the fridge – are here to save the day and bring a little glory to this sad gastronomical downfall.  Continue reading

Zucchini Noodles with Grilled Sesame Tofu and Sundried Tomato Pesto (gluten-free, vegan)

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This menu idea came to mind when I was walking in the street the other day on my way back from the bank after having spent an hour waiting in line, somewhere between Avenida Paulista and the MASP Museum. I guess Brazilian bank bureaucracy gets my brain waves on a roll like that. I was in search of a good vegan menu idea and had been wanting to make zucchini noodles for a while. Especially since I bought a brand new gadget the other day: a julienne peeler.  Continue reading