Sun Gold Tomato Salad with Fava Beans & Buratta

This is an amazingly easy and delicious composed salad that I made during my trip to Sonoma County last week. Of course I can take much less of the credit than my parents for actually growing many of the ingredients, and quite frankly if the tomatoes are not outstanding don’t even bother. Oh but if they are…this is the perfect showcase!

Sun Gold Tomato & Fava Bean Salad with Buratta


3 cups perfectly ripe Sun Gold Tomatoes or other cherry tomatoes, cut in half
2 cups fava beans, shelled, blanched and skins removed*
2 large rounds (about 8 oz each) of buratta cheese, cut in half
1/4 medium red onion, very thinly sliced
A good handful fresh mint and basil, finely chopped
Good quality olive oil and balsamic vinegar, even a fig or cherry balsamic is nice
1 medium lemon
Salt and freshly cracked pepper to taste
Serves about 4


Arrange the buratta cut-side up on a large platter. Scatter the cut tomatoes and the fava beans over the top. Drizzle with balsamic and olive oil and then using a microplane or fine grater; zest the lemon right over the top. Squeeze the lemon juice evenly over the salad and season well with salt and pepper. Top with the herbs and serve immediately!

*If you cannot find fava beans you can use fresh or frozen english peas, though not quite the same.

Gluten-Free Almond Orange Scones

LOVE LOVE this new recipe for Gluten-free Almond Orange Scones! So easy and perfect for a lazy weekend morning, it literally takes about 6 minutes to prepare the dough and under 15 minutes to bake. They also freeze perfectly also so you can eat throughout the week as well. A great and festive exchange is to use hazelnut flour instead of the almond four and viola, you have a whole new recipe. Some fresh fruit or berries make a great addition as well.

It was inspired from Elana’s Pantry…a must visit site for all things gluten-free and non-processed.

SUPER fast Gluten-free Orange Almond Scones.

Photo provided by Ben Thacker


Gluten-Free Almond Orange Scones


2-1/2 cups almond flour
1/3 cup sliced or slivered almonds
1/2 teaspoon himalayan salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 cup dried fruit such as cranberries, raisins, cherries etc
2 large pasture raised eggs
2 Tablespoons virgin coconut oil, melted
1/4 cup honey, maple syrup or agave
1+ Tablespoon orange or lemon zest
1 teaspoon vanilla

Makes 8-10 servings


Thai Mango Cucumber Salad

This is one of my favorite salads and perfect for mango season here in South Florida. I made it as a demo for the Annual Mango Festival at the Fairchild Tropical Gardens last month and it was a hit. It is the perfect blend of sweet, tangy, salty and spicy…just how Thai food should be!

Thai Mango Cucumber Salad with Mint & Toasted Cashews


1 large tomato or 1 cup cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
2 large cucumbers, seeded and sliced into 1/4 inch slices (peeled if not organic)
1 medium semi-ripe mango, peeled and sliced into 1/4 inch slices
1/3 cup thinly sliced red onion
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
2-3 Tablespoons coconut sugar*
2-3 Tablespoons fish sauce or low-sodium soy sauce or low-sodium Tamari
2-4 fresh Thai or serrano chilies, thinly sliced
3 medium garlic cloves, smashed**
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/3 cup chopped fresh mint
1/2 cup chopped cashews or peanuts

Serves 4


Zucchini Pasta with Sun Dried Tomato Cashew Sauce

One of my favorite go-to “pasta” recipes. It is raw, plant-based, full of nutrients and yummy! I think we are all trying to be a bit more carb conscious. Though I am an avid carb lover, I try to pick and choose, white flour pasta is not usually in the list anymore (every once in a while though!). You can make this recipe as is or use the zucchini method for pretty much any sauce, works especially well with a warm sauce as it will wilt the “pasta” just enough. If you are trying to sell it to fussy kids; peel off the dark green part of the zucchini, they will never know what hit em!

The sauce itself is divine just on a spoon!


Zucchini Pasta with Tomato Basil Sauce


4 large zucchini, ends trimmed
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
a few pinches of dried oregano
2-3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

1 ½ cups sun dried tomatoes (not packed in oil)
1/2 cup raw cashews
4 medium pitted dates
(Place all 3 in a jar together and soak at least 4 hours or overnight
3 medium cloves garlic
1 ½ cup tomatoes, quartered
A good handful basil leaves
1 Tablespoon lemon juice or balsamic vinegar
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt

Makes about 4 servings


Raw Chocolate Coconut Truffles

Would anyone say no to a Raw Chocolate Coconut Truffle? I didn’t think so! These tasty treats are always a big hit. They are vegan, gluten free and packed with iron, fiber and amazingness. I teach them in classes, make versions of them for parties and keep them in my freezer at all times for a late night treat that satisfies the sweet tooth in a truly healthy way. Once you learn the “formula” you can play around and get creative, so many fun additions to make them unique. They are also wonderful because they travel well, can be left unrefrigerated and give you lots of nutrient rich energy. Another fave recipe using the same technique are these Raw Carrot Cake Truffles, check ’em out!


Raw Chocolate Coconut Truffles


1 cup mixed nuts or seeds of your choice:
(pecans, walnuts, cashews, sunflower seeds, pistachios, almonds, pumpkin seeds)
1+ cup of desiccated coconut, divided
1/4 cup raw cacao powder, or more if desired
2 Tablespoons chia or ground flax seed (optional)
1 ½ cup pitted dates
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-4 Tablespoons filtered water as needed
A pinch of salt

Makes about 2 dozen medium balls

Place the nuts, half of the coconut, cacao powder, chia or flax in a food processor and blend until finely chopped. Add the dates and vanilla and and pulse until well blended. Add the water 1 tablespoon at a time if the mixture is not coming together into a sticky dough and pulse until it will roll into a ball easily.

With your hands roll the mixture into small balls. Roll the balls in remaining coconut and place the balls on a plate and refrigerate until hard. Store for up to a week in the refrigerator or a month in the freezer.


Tips & Notes~

Roll the balls in some finely chopped up nuts or some more cocoa powder.

Add some wheatgrass or spirulina powder or high quality protein powder to pack in the nutrients.

You can also add some finely chopped dried cherries or cranberries to add a sweet tang.

Keep this nut free and make with only pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds.