Garden Pasta

This is an on-the-fly post and a quick snapshot before devoured as I was at my sister’s house visiting her and her newborn and had brought lunch ingredients.

The night before I quickly made a garlic scape pesto which was highly improvised with just garlic scapes, sunflower seeds, nutritional yeast, olive oil, and some salt. I had it with some sourdough bread and it was super spicy!

This dish has:

Spaghetti noodles: found in bulk at WinCo

Peas: picked from my garden

Garlic scape pesto: from the garden + bulk ingredients

Mint: garden

To make pasta:

Boil water and salt and cook spaghetti, adding in peas (shelled peas or snap peas with shell) in the last minute.

Reserve a couple cups of pasta water.


Add in 3/4 cup of pesto into pasta water and stir to combine.

Put pasta back into pot, pan, or bowl then top with the pesto sauce.

Top this off with about 1/4 cup or fresh mint leaves.


Peace and love,



Cabbage + Veggie Stir Fry

I’m not a huge stir-fry fan, but this recipe from PopSugar caught my eye. I gave it a try, with variations of course, and really loved it!

It’s vibrant, beautiful, tasty, and healthy. It’s a great way to use up any lingering vegetables in the house as well.

I used Quorn “chicken” cutlets as a substitute for tofu because I cannot find package-free tofu near me, and I’m also not the biggest fan of tofu anyway. It can be delicious, but it requires more energy from me than I am willing to give most weeknights, or heck, even weekends.

The vegetables consisted of 1/2 head of cabbage, 3 carrots, 1 bell pepper, and 1 bunch of broccoli rabe. Veggies should be sliced long and thin, especially the cabbage so that it resembles noodles.

For seasonings you’ll want:

  • 1/2 – 1 cup vegetable stock (homemade or store bought)
  • 1 Tablespoon Bragg Liquid Aminos (commonly found in bulk sections)
  • 1/2 Tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 Tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 Tablespoon each of minced garlic + ginger

Mix all the liquids together and set aside.

**I was already roasting veggies for another dish and added the Quorn cutlets to the roasting pan until they were thoroughly heated, then cubed them before adding them to this dish.

Heat 1 Tablespoon oil of choice in large, heavy pan set to high heat.

Toss garlic and ginger in oil until fragrant, add in cutlets if using, then carrots, broccoli, and bell pepper.

Cook until veggies start to soften a bit, about 10 minutes, then add in cabbage, and continue to fry.

Add in the liquid seasonings and coat everything in the mixture, stirring constantly.

You’ll see your veggies start to shrink and brown a bit, taking on the flavorings of the sauces.

Add 1/4 cup chopped walnuts and mix together.

Cook until veggies are softer, but still have a crispiness to them.

Add salt and pepper as needed and enjoy!

I let my dish continue to cook after this photo because the veggies were still quite raw at this point.

Peace and love,


Food Waste: cherry tomatoes + 2 recipes

Another school snack saved from the dumpster.

This picture is my idealistic view on how tomatoes should come. Freshly washed, ready for eating, sweet from the sun that turned them their true colors. Unfortunately, the next picture shows the true view on how they came to my classroom: plastic shells. Fortunately, the plastic is #2 which can be recycled here.

I dig fresh heirloom tomatoes raw, but these were…not tasty. They tasted like something was forced in the process of getting them to the market. My students ate more than I expected them to, but they were so pretty, I knew I couldn’t just sacrifice these to the compost goddesses. These would need special treatment by way of oils, spices, salt, and plenty of heat.

The first thing I did with a couple pints was oven roast them.

I cut the tomatoes in half, then added some sugar, a bit of salt, and a couple Tablespoons of olive oil.

They laid out face-up on the baking sheet, and they roasted for nearly an hour at 350F.

They melted and poured their juices out and became way more flavorful in the process.

Be sure to scrape any of the tastiness from the baking sheet to store with the tomatoes in a glass jar. I’ll store these in the fridge to add to dishes throughout the week.

In the above picture, you can see I still had plenty of tomatoes to work with.

Next up was tomato sauce to go with the spaghetti I had bought in my own bag at WinCo!

It all started with a bunch of nice cloves of garlic. Mince them!

Prepare tomatoes by cutting them in half. This will make quick work of the tomato sauce.

Heat up some olive oil, then add in all the delicious minced garlic and let it permeate throughout the house. Mmm!

Add in the halved tomatoes and turn the heat up to get it all started.

Turn the heat to medium, and when the tomatoes have let out some of their juices, add in herb(s) of choice. Obviously basil is a good choice, but so is oregano, or what I’m using which is marjoram because I have a giant bush of marjoram out front that is always begging me to use in every Italian dish.

Sprinkle in some sea salt while this simmers away.

It starts to break down and get thicker. This is after about 10 minutes. Stir every few minutes, but it doesn’t need close watching.

Here it is after 30 minutes, and I could have stopped it here and had a wonderful tomato sauce, but I let it go even further because I felt like the tomatoes needed extra caramelizing since they were mostly flavorless to begin with.

And it’s done now! It’s thick, and smells amazing. I didn’t bother with blending it at all, but did pick out the little sticks of marjoram that were left.

Cook up something delicious for a base! Of course, I cooked spaghetti, added in some white beans, fresh parsley, red pepper flakes, and more salt. Out of this world good, and truly not too long of a dinner especially considering it is fresh tomato sauce!

Peace and love,