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Quinoa,Nectarines and Pistachio Salad + Vegan Chocolate Peanut Butter Pillows

Posted Jul 28 2012 11:18pm

Good Evening and Happy Saturday!
I hope everyone is having a great weekend. We kicked off the weekend by having friends over for dinner on Friday and then spending today doing all of our favorite things.  The kids are off to camp tomorrow and we were able to spend some quality time together as a family.  We headed to the PSU Farmer's Market this morning and then tooled around downtown for a bit before heading home to pick up our rackets to play a little tennis.  After playing around for two hours we got cleaned up and took the kids to their restaurant of choice: Boke Bowl!


I promised some recipes and actually have a couple winners from our dinner party last night.  




The first one is a Quinoa, Nectarines and Pistachio Salad that is simply delicious!

I found saw this recipe at Whole Foods but it was originally made with whole-wheat couscous.  I made a few adjustments to make the salad gluten-free and added arugula instead of watercress.  
Quinoa, Nectarines and Pistachio Salad 1 cup quinoa, cooked according to package directions.1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard 1/4 teaspoon sea salt 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 2 organic nectarines, diced 1 1/2 cups arugula 1/2 cup pistachios, chopped 1/4 cup thinly sliced shallot Prepare quinoa according to package directions.  Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together vinegar, mustard, salt and pepper. Whisk in olive oil in a thin steady stream until dressing thickens. Add quinoa, nectarines, arugula, pistachios and shallots to bowl and toss to combine. Serve warm or chilled.



along with Chips + Dip

Guacamole, Salsa and Edamame Hummus


I served a simple salad of Tomato, Cucumber, Red Onion, Artichokes Heart, Avocado over a bed of Heirloom Lettuces.

The main course was Tuscan Bean Burgers + Hamburgers but surprisingly don't seem to have any pictures : (  I will share the recipe for the Tuscan Bean Burgers tomorrow because they were absolutely delish!  I am way into my my own veggies burgers right now and have got a couple great recipes for you.

Burger Toppings




Now you know that a party would not be a party with a little dessert.....


Zoe and I found a recipe for Chocolate Peanut Butter Pillows on the Post Punk Kitchen website and knew we had to make them.  I tweaked the recipe just a bit.  My daughter loved making these!


Peanut Butter Chocolate Pillowsmakes 2 dozen cookies
Chocolate dough:1/2 cup coconut oil, melted3/4 cup evaporated cane sugar1/4 cup pure maple syrup3 tablespoons non-dairy milk1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract1 1/2 cups whole-wheat pastry flour1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder4 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder1/2 teaspoon baking soda1/4 teaspoon saltFilling:3/4 cup natural salted peanut butter, crunchy or creamy style2/3 cup confectioner’s sugar2 to 3 tablespoons non-dairy milk1/4 teaspoon vanilla extractIn a large mixing bowl combine oil, sugar, maple syrup, non-dairy milk and vanilla extract and mix until smooth. Sift in flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Mix to form a moist dough.Make the filling. In another mixing bowl beat together peanut butter, confectioner’s sugar, 2 tablespoons of ono-dairy milk and vanilla extract to form a moist but firm dough. If peanut butter dough is too dry (as different natural peanut butters have different moisture content), stir in remaining tablespoon of non-dairy milk. If dough is too wet knead in a little extra powdered sugar.Preheat oven to 350°F. Line bakings sheet with parchment paper.Shape the cookies. Create the centers of the cookies by rolling the peanut butter dough into 24 balls. Scoop a generous tablespoon of chocolate dough, flatten into a disc and place a peanut butter ball in the center. Fold the sides of the chocolate dough up and around the peanut butter center and roll the chocolate ball into an smooth ball between your palms. Place on a sheet of waxed paper and repeat with remaining doughs. If desired gently flatten cookies a little, but this is not necessary.Place dough balls on lined baking sheets about 2 inches apart and bake for 10 minutes. Remove sheet from oven and let cookies for 5 minutes before moving to a wire rack to complete cooling. Store cookies in tightly covered container. If desired warm cookies in a microwave for 10 to 12 seconds before serving.



These little Pillows are to diet for!  I have been on a bit of a chocolate and peanut butter tear lately and can't seem to get enough of that combo.
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