Category Archives: cashews

Parsnip Apple Soup

Today is very cold! The temperature dropped 10 degrees from last weekend to this weekend! We’ve even had snow! This kind of quick change in weather and temperature is hard to get used to. Even dressed for the cold, I found myself walking around outside with a tense and hunched up body, daydreaming about beaches in Hawaii!


I mean, look at it! The trees and bushes are still green (under that snow)! It’s not right! I’m not ready! Brrrr!

Well, when it comes to food and cold weather, what do you think of?

I think of soup!

For lunch today, I had a delicious Tomato Fennel Soup at Tractor Everyday Healthy Foods ( Warmed me right up, it did! Later, when I got home and saw that I had parsnips and leeks in my CSA box, I immediately decided to make my own soup.


I’d just read the latest post on Dishing Up the Dirt and there was a Parsnip and Apple Soup featured so I decided to use that recipe as my guide. I think you’re going to like it!

Parsnip Apple Soup

(adapted from Dishing Up the Dirt, Parsnip and Apple Soup,


scant tbsp. butter (vegan or the real thing)

1 tsp vegetable oil

1 leek, chopped finely

3 parsnips, peeled and chopped in small pieces

1 large apple, peeled, cored and chopped in small pieces

3/4 tsp coriander

salt and pepper

2 cups chicken flavoured vegetable stock

1/4 cup cashew cream

Melt and heat the butter and the oil together over medium heat in a medium to large sized pot. Add the leek, parsnips and apple and combine, increasing the heat a little bit. Add in the coriander and salt and pepper (I used several grindings of fresh black pepper and about 1/4 tsp salt). Stir together and cook, stirring occasionally for about 5 to 10 minutes until the vegetables are soft and releasing their juices. If you like, you can add a splash of water to keep the vegetables from sticking. Pour in the stock, cover and simmer over medium to low heat for 20 minutes. Using an immersion blender, puree the soup to your desired consistency. (In our household, “Tom” prefers a bit of texture in his soups, so I left a few bits of vegetables in the soup. I think the soup would be quite lovely if you thoroughly puree it too). Stir in the cashew cream, warm through and serve. Yum!





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Vegan Cream Cheese

I am so proud of myself! I made vegan cream cheese today and it’s delicious!


You know, sometimes I lack confidence in the kitchen. I enjoy cooking and creating delicious and creative vegan dishes and meals, but, most of the time, I follow a recipe. I get a bit anxious about launching off on my own without a recipe to anchor my creativity. Oh yes, there are several dishes I can make off by heart or have invented (humous, various salads and salad dressings, chili, bowls …), but most cooking days find me consulting a recipe. Now, this cream cheese recipe … I based it on Kaylie Johnson’s Dairy Free Paleo Cream Cheese Recipe on the blog Paleo Gluten Free Eats. I followed her recipe, but I wasn’t pleased with the flavour. So, you know what I did? I added a bit of this, a bit of that until I was satisfied. While I was adjusting, I realized that I was feeling confident and sure, that I have enough experience to just go for it. Although I used someone else’s recipe to start, I made this recipe my own. I can truly call it my own because I used what I know, what I like, and made something that worked for me. Yay me! So here it is:

1 cup cashews, soaked

1 1/2 tbsps water

1/8 cup + freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 tbsp coconut oil

1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar

1/8 tsp salt

1/16 tsp finely minced garlic

Put all ingredients in a blender and blend until very, very smooth. If you are using a high powered blender like a Vitamix, you shouldn’t have to blend for too long to get everything blended and the right consistency. If you have an ordinary blender, like I do, you will have to blend for at least 5 minutes, probably more, scraping down the sides as you go. I was able to keep the blender going while using a spatula to push the mixture from the sides into the middle. This way, the blender didn’t get stuck and I got everything really well blended together.


This cream cheese is a savoury type, due to the salt and garlic, so use it in that way – on crackers, on bagels, on toast, with tomatoes … whatever your cream cheese thing is! I haven’t tried it yet, but I’m sure you could use this cream cheese in things like a layered mexican dip or in a salad dressing. Try it and let me know what you think and how you used it. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to have a snack!




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