Dips, Sauces and Spreads
Starter Soups and Salads
Oven Roasted Tomatoes
These tomatoes are absolutely delicious! The flavours are full bodied, caramelized and crazy sweet! You can eat them as a side dish on their own or serve with a nice piece of baguette or even use them to top pastas and sandwiches. I like to make a big batch when tomatoes are in season and freeze in resealable bags. You can just pop a few out as you need in the winter!
Arugula, Fig and Green Apple Salad
This is a great salad to impress guests for a special occasion dinner! The sweetness of the fresh figs pairs so beautifully with the tart apples and slight bitterness from the arugula. Make it when fresh figs are in season!
Curried Chickpea and Potato Pockets
This is like an Indian calzone! Curried potatoes and chickpeas are wrapped in a pizza dough and baked. A really a yummy treat for a snack or lunch! Make a big batch and freeze in resealable freezer bags. Just take them out as you need and enjoy! This recipe will make 8 pockets.
Raw Beet and Fennel Slaw with Asian Vinaigrette
In addition to being really crunchy and delicious, this salad is a colourful addition to any buffet table! The Asian vinaigrette adds a bit of a surprise factor to these crunchy fresh veggies!
Babaghanouj (Lebanese Eggplant Dip)
An absolutely great classic Lebanese dip! For the authentic experience, serve with warm pita bread! It is also great with pita chips, crackers or fresh veggies. You will notice my trick here is to roast the garlic within the flesh of the eggplant. Since roasted garlic has a smoother flavour than raw, it is better in this dip. The eggplant serves as a great device to prevent the garlic from burning, while allowing itself to be infused with the delicious roasted garlic flavor!
Thai Sweet Potato – Coconut Spread
This dip has really special flavor combinations! It can be served with crackers, or as a sandwich spread or even as a dip for fresh veggies.
Cucumber Sesame Salad
This is a really nice refreshing picnic basket salad! For this salad I used a spiral veggie slicer to get the cucumbers so thin. If you do not have one, you can use a mandolin or just a very sharp knife and slice as thinly as possible. This salad can keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
Carrot, Lentil and Ginger Soup
Roasting the carrots and onions brings out their natural sweetness and really enhances the flavour of the soup. I also snuck some lentils into the soup to add more protein and make it heartier!
Fresh Mango and Cilantro Salsa
This is a great and refreshing salsa to serve over tacos or enchiladas. It is also great as a dip with tortilla chips to be served as an appetizer when you have company over.2. This salsa can be made up to 2 days in advance – store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Roasted Red Pepper and Cumin Hummus
The sweetness of the roasted peppers combines beautifully with the cumin for a new take on the classic loved hummus! For this recipe, you can use store bought, jarred roasted peppers or make your own.
Vegan BBQ Ribs
Yuba, or dried beancurd sheets is used here as a great alternative to ribs. It has a great layered texture and with this sticky barbecue style marinade you will be able to hold them in your hands and chomp away!
Roasted Garlic and White Bean Hummus
This is a change from the traditional chickpea hummus. I find white beans smoother tasting than chickpeas, therefore they pair beautifully with roasted garlic. Serve with pita chips or raw vegetables for dipping.
Creamy Leek and Celery Root Soup
This is a great alternative to the classic leek and potato soup. Celery root is much healthier than potatoes and it has such a soft and creamy flavour. It is a bit of a weird looking vegetable, but don’t be scared of it – it’s delicious!
Spiced Red Lentil and Herb Dip
This is a great dip to serve with pita or even tortilla chips. It’s really healthy, high in fibre and protein and very low in fat!
Black Bean and Mango Salsa
This is a great salsa to serve over tacos or enchiladas or even as a dip with tortilla chips. The black beans make it a bit more substantial than the average salsa as they are full of protein and fibre! The mango and cilantro add a really fresh nice flavour. This recipe will give you about 3 cups of salsa. This salsa can be made up to 2 days in advance – store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Roasted Carrot and Dill Soup
I love roasting carrots to bring out their natural flavours and sweetness! In this soup, you won’t believe just how well the fresh dill pairs with the carrots!
Chopped Tofu Spread
This recipe is great for an afternoon snack on crackers, or to top a big salad for lunch. I like to make lots of it since you can store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
Colourful Spring Salad
This salad is a great side salad for a barbecue because of the vibrant colours and fresh crunch it offers. It can also be nice to pack for a lunchtime healthy meal.
Faux Lox – Vegan Smoked Salmon
This has the texture and taste of actual smoked salmon. I was even able to fool a few fish eaters into believing it was the real thing! Serve it on a bagel with cream cheese (vegan cream cheese works well), sliced red onion and a few sprigs of fresh dill.
Beer Battered Onion Rings
Boy do I love onion rings! I always order them in restaurants when I can, but nothing beats freshly fried beer battered onion rings! You can serve them on the side of a veggie burger for a fun meal, or as an appetizer for a dinner party or game day with a spicy mayo dipping sauce.