Two Summery Treats!

This week brings two offerings, the first from Sandra Miller and the second from Erica Lloyd.

Cooking with the Seasons

by Sandra Miller

As many of you know, I love Orion Magazine. It is a nature lover’s and reader’s choice for how folks like me want to see the world in the now and the future. Earlier this month, my email revealed it to be a foodie lover’s treasure as well, with a link to a beautiful article in Emergence Magazine.

“Seasons of the Monastic Table” includes four seasons’ worth of plans for meals shared with friends, or of course for you with leftovers, each accompanied by an inspiring photo. It seems, at first glance, rather ambitious, but each recipe is pretty straightforward, and many are just plain simple, such as zucchini summer rolls, and mint pesto. If you are aiming for a truly vegan diet there are a couple of substitutions you will have to make. Many recipes calling for honey offer a substitute, but some don’t, and in all cases I recommend agave syrup (I like the organic blue agave from Costco, but Whole Foods carries a nice variety at a higher price).

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There are a few calls for cheese. Some recipes let you know that nutritional yeast is their vegan choice, and I’ll remind you that for recipes with parmesan and such (my favorite vegan version is Daiya brand), and for soft cheeses there are also store-bought options available at the TPSS Coop, Mom’s, Yes!, and even in “regular” grocery stores. And a reminder that Katie sent out a recipe for a great homemade soft cheese made from sunflower seeds.

Enjoy the rich possibilities of vegan, healthy, and scrumptious food that stretches your palate—and maybe your palette!

Mint Pesto

from “Seasons of the Monastic Table”


  • 1 oz (25 grams) pine nuts, or other nuts or seeds to your liking
  • 1-2 garlic cloves
  • A generous bunch of fresh basil
  • A generous bunch of fresh mint
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
  • Sea salt
  • Black pepper
  • A dash of lemon
  • A generous amount of olive oil


  • Toast the pine nuts (or other nuts or seeds).
  • Combine pine nuts, garlic, basil, mint, nutritional yeast, sea salt, black pepper, and a little lemon juice and bring them together with a mortar and pestle, adding a little olive oil at a time until smooth and runny.

You can also use a blender or a food processor.

Corn and Cherry Tomato Salad

by Erica Lloyd

This recipe adapted from the New York Times is a perfect July dish that I love when the ingredients are so abundant at the farmer’s market (or in the garden)! It’s very quick and easy, and no oven/stove needed when it’s so dang hot outside!


  • 3 ears of fresh corn on the cob
  • 1 pint of cherry tomatoes
  • 1/4-1/2 cup packed basil leaves
  • 1 lime
  • Salt and pepper


  • Microwave the ears of corn for 3-4 minutes. Cut off the stalk end, then peel leaves down towards the silk end. (This is the best technique for cleaning fresh corn easily!) Cut all the corn off the cobs and put in a large bowl.
  • Halve the cherry tomatoes and toss them in the bowl with the corn.
  • Roll up the basil leaves and slice into thin ribbons. Toss in the bowl.
  • Squeeze in lime juice to taste—I usually use about half a lime but it depends on how juicy your lime is.
  • Mix everything together and add salt and pepper to taste.

Serve as is as a side dish, or mix in some cooked farro (and more lime juice) to make a bowl that’s filling enough for a meal!

Keep the Recipes (and Shopping Tips) Coming!

We’d love to keep featuring a vegan recipe or shopping tip each week. If you have an old favorite, or have tried something new recently, please write it up and send it to John or Katie. Desserts, salads, sandwiches, entrees . . . anything that tastes good!

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