Chocolate-Avocado Blender Pudding (VEGAN)

By Libbie Summers
Assisted by David Dempsey
Recipe from Bon Appetit and adjusted for ease and sprinkle
Cuisine Apron Dress in White Linen available at Libbie Summers Yum Yum Smile Shop 

I’m off to cook for sailors again…and there’s always one vegan. Finding desserts that speak to my non-vegan senses and are easy and delicious are sometimes difficult, until today. THIS ONE IS INCREDIBLE! Make it right now! Kiss me later.

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Chocolate-Avocado Blender Pudding (VEGAN)
serves 6

What you need:
Pudding:
2 large avocados, pits removed
1 vanilla bean, split lenghtwise
3/4 cup high quality cocoa powder
1/4 to 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1/4 cup agave nectar
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange or nectarine juice (I used nectarine)
1/2 teaspoon flake sea salt

Topping Optional (non-vegan):
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon confectioners sugar
Hey Sailor Sprinkles

What to do: 
1. Make Pudding: Scoop the flesh from the avocados and add to a blender with 3/4 cup HOT water (not boiling), seeds scraped from the inside of the vanilla bean (save the leftover bean to add to a jar of sugar for vanilla sugar!), cocoa powder, 1/4 cup maple syrup, agave, juice and salt. Blend until creamy smooth. Taste and add remaining 1/4 cup maple syrup if you feel you need more sweetness. Divide among 6 small dishes and refrigerate for a minimum of two hours if you can wait (uncovered).

2. Make Topping: In a medium mixing bowl add the whipping cream and whip for 30 seconds. Add confectioners sugar and continue to whip until soft peaks form.

To Serve: For Vegan eaters, top each bowl of pudding with a beautiful light dusting of cocoa powder. For non-vegans, add a dollop of whipped cream and Hey Sailor sprinkles.

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Gingham Trimmed Linen Napkins available from Libbie Summers Yum Yum Smile Shop
Blue Bowls available from Keith Krieger

Vegan Spinach Soup

By Libbie Summers
Assisted by David Dempsey
Chamber Apron in Green Linen from Libbie Summers Yum Yum Smile Shop

You know you’ve made a great soup when the guests get up from the table and help themselves to another helping. This happened two weeks ago when I made this for a group of health conscious, discerning and voracious professional sailors. It could have been my finest vegan moment to date. 

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Spinach Soup with Basil Cream and Torn Lemon Croutons (VEGAN)
(serves 4)

What you need: For Lemon Croutons
1 baguette, torn into large pieces
1/4 cup olive oil
Zest from 1 lemon

For Basil Cream
1/2 cup basil leaves, packed (plus more for garnish)
1 cup plain coconut milk yogurt
Juice from 1 lemon
Flake sea salt

For Soup
1 onion, roughly chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
3 cups vegetable stock
1 cup parsley leaves, roughly chopped
10 ounces baby spinach leaves
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 cup plain coconut milk yogurt
1/4 cup vanilla coconut milk yogurt (can substitute 1 tablespoon honey for a vegetarian version)
Flake sea salt
Coarsely ground black pepper

What To Do:
1. Make Lemon Croutons: Preheat oven to 375º F. On a baking sheet, add bread, olive oil and lemon zest. Toss to coat. Bake just until golden brown (about 5-10 minutes). Set aside to cool.

2. Start Soup: In a large sauce pan over high heat, add onion, garlic and stock. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat and simmer just until onions are tender and translucent (about 10 minutes).

3. Make Basil Cream: While onions are cooking, make the Basil Cream. In a blender, add yogurt, basil leaves and lemon juice. Puree until smooth. Season with salt. Pour into a bowl and set aside.

4. Finish Soup: Once the onions have cooked through, add the parsley, spinach and cayenne pepper. Stir and cook just until spinach has wilted. Stir in yogurt. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Add soup to a blender and puree until smooth (or use and immersion blender).

To Serve: Divide soup between bowls and add an ample swirl of Basil Cream over the top. Garnish with basil leaves and serve with Lemon Croutons.

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THE BEST Fried Oyster Sandwich

By Libbie Summers
Assisted by David Dempsey
Shopkeep Apron in Indigo Denim from Yum Yum Smile Shop

Fresh local oysters fried to the perfect crispness, stuffed inside a sweet slit-top brioche bun and slathered in a magical spicy remoulade sauce. BOOM! Heaven on a lunch plate. 
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The Best Fried Oyster Sandwich with Cool Smoke Remoulade
(makes 4 sandwiches)

What you need: 
For Oysters
1 pint shucked oysters (about 36 small oysters)
2 cups buttermilk
1 cup self-rising flour
1/2 cup plain bread crumbs
1/2 cup cornmeal
2 tablespoons Cool Smoke Everything Rub (can substitute Old Bay Seasoning or your favorite rub)
Canola oil for frying
Flake Sea Salt
4 split-top brioche buns (toasting optional)
4 lemon wedges for garnish
1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley for garnish
For Cool Smoke Remoulade
1 1/2 cups Duke’s Mayonnaise
1/4 cup stone ground mustard
1 tablespoon drained capers
1 tablespoon pickle juice
1 teaspoon horseradish
1 teaspoon hot sauce (your fave)
1 tablespoon Cool Smoke Everything Rub (can substitute Old Bay Seasoning or your favorite rub)
1 minced garlic

What to do: 
1. Soak Oysters: In a medium bowl add buttermilk and drained oysters. Set aside.
2. Make Dry Coating: In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, bread crumbs, corn meal and 2 tablespoons Cool Smoke Everything Rub. Set aside.
3. Make Cool Smoke Remoulade: In a medium bowl, stir together all remoulade ingredients and refrigerate until ready to use.
4. Fry Oysters: Pour 3-4 inches of oil into a deep heavy-bottomed pot and heat to 350°F. Remove oysters one at a time from buttermilk and shake off, then dredge in the flour mixture and shake off any excess. Working in batches, carefully add the oysters to the hot oil and fry until golden brown and crisp (about 2 minutes), drain on paper towels and sprinkle immediately with flake sea salt. Continue with the rest of the oysters.
5. Make Sandwiches: Slather the inside of the rolls with Cool Smoke Remoulade. Stuff hot oysters into the roll and top with another spoonful of sauce. Squeeze lemon over each sandwich and garnish with chopped parsley. BOOM! Serve immediately.

*Watch the IGTV making this sandwich!
*Make sure to check out my friend Ashley Strickland Freeman’s new book The Duke’s Mayonnaise Cookbook -75 Recipes Celebrating the Perfect Condiment 
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Kiss Me Frosting

By Libbie Summers
Assisted by David Dempsey
Chamber Apron in Light Pink and Chambray Striped Linen from Libbie Summers Yum Yum Smile Shop

 

STOP! If you save no other recipe…save this one. Kiss Me Frosting is my go to, never fail, everyone loves it, “what the hell is in that frosting” frosting! This time of year when love is in the air Kiss me Frosting tastes even sweeter on the tongue. I love this cinnamon candy colored frosting on everything from my Hot and Heavy Baby Cakes , chocolate cookies, graham crackers, cupcakes, biscuits and my husband’s lips (I had to). BOOM!
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Kiss Me Frosting
(cinnamon candy buttercream)
yields about 3 1⁄2 cups

What you need:
1 cup (2 sticks ) butter, at room temperature 4 1⁄2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
1⁄4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla paste (can sub vanilla extract)
2 tablespoons evaporated milk
1/2 heaping cup cinnamon candy/Red Hots (basically a 6 ounce box), pulsed in a food processor to a fine sugar

What to do:
In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until fluffy. Reduce speed to low and gradually add the confectioners’ sugar. Increase the speed to medium and add the salt, vanilla paste, and evaporated milk. Beat for 2 minutes. If the frosting is too thin at this point you can add more of the confectioners’ sugar and mix for 30 seconds, or just until combined. If the frosting is too thick, add a bit more evaporated milk, 1 tablespoon at a time, and mix for 30 seconds, or just until combined. Add the crushed cinnamon candies and stir until combined (BONUS!! They will also color the frosting pink). Frosting can be made ahead and stored in the refrigerator for up to one week.

 

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Greens and Orzo Stir Fry

By Libbie Summers
Photography by Chia Chong
Assisted by David Dempsey

Quite possibly the quickest (15 minutes…seriously) weeknight or any night meal that’s packed with nutrients, flavor and the most beautiful color. The bonus is it uses up any leftover pasta. BOOM! 
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Greens and Orzo Stir Fry
serves 4

What you need: 
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 cups shredded purple cabbage
1 large bunch greens, cleaned, dried and roughly chopped (great with any hearty greens –mustard, dinosaur kale, turnip, collard etc…)
8 ounces orzo, cooked al dente
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
1 teaspoon chili oil
Sea Salt

What to do:
1. Place a wok over high heat and heat to very hot. Add canola oil and bring to a shimmer. Stir in cabbage and cook stirring for 2 minutes. Add in turnip greens and cook stirring until just starting to wilt. Stir in orzo, sesame oil and chili oil. Cook stirring for 3 minutes. Liberally salt. Serve immediately.

Variation: Stir in 2 cups of shredded chicken or poached salmon at the end if you like, or place a piece of grilled salmon on top. DELIGHTFUL!

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