Healthy Tangerine Julius Smoothie {vegan}

You could call it a tangerine almond smoothie, or a tangerine creamsicle drink–both names suggest the flavors going on here. But if you’ve ever tasted the creamy citrus-y vanilla-y trademark orange Julius, your mouth is already watering. This healthy tangerine julius smoothie is a healthful riff on the famous orange beverage.

Healthy Tangerine Julius Smoothie | Letty's Kitchen

Frothy and refreshing, this smoothie gets its start with fresh-squeezed tangerine juice, vanilla almond milk, dates, and a banana. Fresh ginger and turmeric add zing, color, and myriad health benefits.

Tangerines are on January’s The Vintage Mixer seasonal produce list, and the juicy, honey-sweet orange cuties got me thinking smoothies. A test batch was yummy, but it didn’t have much orange color—and then I remembered an orange spice that had recently come under my radar–turmeric. Continue Reading…

Mexican Black-eyed Pea Salad with Red Pepper

 Eating black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day is a tradition worth keeping. I mean we don’t want to miss out on all the good luck coming to us the whole year long, do we? Bring on the fortune with this zesty, politely-spiced Mexican black-eyed pea salad.

Mexican Black-eyed Pea Salad | Letty's Kitchen

¡Feliz Año Nuevo! Since we’re in Baja Mexico, this year I decided to turn tradition into a salad–with south of the border flavors. Tender little beans with their black-eyed wink, tossed with crunchy diced red pepper and cucumber, and minced fresh green jalapeño pepper and cilantro, all coated in tangy lime vinaigrette, all easy and quick–here comes luck, wealth, and health! Continue Reading…

Spicy Greens and Lentil Tacos with Guacamole Sauce

Mexican food made with simple, flavorful ingredients—spicy greens and lentil tacos with guacamole sauce. One bite, una mordida, and you’ll be dancing the cha cha cha!

Spicy Greens and Lentil Tacos with Guacamole Sauce | Letty's Kitchen

Leafy greens inspire a whole lot of meals in this kitchen. I’m always amazed at how what looks like a huge pile of greens wilts into a spicy, tangy, sweetly bitter tumble. Right now we’re hanging out in Baja Mexico, and garden-fresh wilted greens tucked into griddle-warm corn tortillas are looking muy bien. Continue Reading…

Black and Red Lentil Beer Soup

This black and red lentil beer soup is quick to make, high-in-protein, plant-based, and tasty as all get out—an easy home-cooked meal for this busy time of year. This recipe first appeared on Pressure Cooking Today, where I’m a contributor.

Black and Red Lentil Beer Soup | Letty's Kitchen

I’ve been making this hearty vegetarian soup, with variations here and there, since I was old enough to drink beer. (Not that that would have stopped me from pouring beer in my soup.) Around that same time I bought my first pressure cooker, so I’m pretty sure I’ve always used a pressure cooker for lentil beer soup.

At the top of a tattered yellowed page in one of my old recipe journals, I scribbled Lentil Wunderbar Soup. In those days I didn’t think to note where a recipe came from—so if you have a clue, please write. What I do know is wunderbar in German means wonderful, marvelous. Continue Reading…

A Baker’s Dozen Healthy Holiday Cookies

It seems like sweets galore show up everywhere one goes this time of year. I say to myself that I’m going to stay away from food with a lot of sugar, but then I spy a plate of homemade cookies and my resolve flies right out the window. Does that happen to you? Thought so. Let’s put a screen on that window. Here’s a baker’s dozen roundup of healthy holiday cookies–treats with a healthier twist!

Healthy Holiday Cookies Roundup

“Healthier twist” is my very flexible description. It means if maple syrup or coconut sugar or honey is in the recipe, that’s healthier. Then again, if there’s a little cane sugar involved—well the cookie is probably gluten-free or vegan. We all have friends and family who would appreciate some tempting healthy holiday cookies that just happen to be one of those. Continue Reading…