Kim Watkinson, The Ninja Baker, shares her adapted recipe for Vegan Carrot Waffles – perfect for a breakfast for dinner Weekday Supper – along with her review of The Love and Lemons Cookbook: An Apple-to-Zucchini Celebration of Impromptu Cooking. Want to win your own copy? Make sure to scroll down to the bottom to enter the lucky draw!
Acts of love, petite or grand, brighten any day. And a kiss of lemon can make an ordinary dish beautiful. Vegan and vegetarian hearts will go pitter-patter flipping through the pages of The Love & Lemons Cookbook. The creators of the cookbook are popular Love & Lemons blogger, Jeanine Donofrio, and her husband, Jack Mathews.
The Love & Lemons blog was inspired by the couple’s first trip to Italy, a land where pasta and romance take top billing. This year the couple channeled their love for foreign flavors into the birth of The Love and Lemons Cookbook: An Apple-to-Zucchini Celebration of Impromptu Cooking. Passion for the cuisine of other countries is evident throughout. Spices, sauces and vegetables from all over the world appear in this picture-rich cookbook.
The recipes are also amenable to the tastes of meat-lovers. Switch out tofu for a slightly pre-cooked meatball. Or quickly cover a pork chop with Jeanine’s Carrot-Ginger sauce (or any one of the other sauce recipes in the cookbook.) The Love & Lemons philosophy reminds me of casting Hollywood films. Find the stars (like carrots.) Surround the star with interesting characters (spices and sauces.) Adjust the budget of time and money as needed.
Jeanine’s sleight-of-hand talent for transforming last night’s leftovers into tonight’s spectacular supper is obvious. She encourages Kitchen Sink Salads, Scrambled Eggs and soups made special with a few spices. Jeanine is also generous in her sharing of short cuts to fabulous food. Her recipes are flexible and take into account individual tastes.
So that impromptu culinary choreography in the kitchen is flawless, a list of recommended pantry items is given at the beginning of the cookbook. Japanese miso paste, tamari (soy sauce with less wheat content), soba noodles and sriracha are but a few of the suggested Love & Lemon staples. Although an American of European descent, Japanese food and language were all I knew until age five. Tokyo was my hometown until age 18. (I still read, write and speak Japanese, returning to my home country as time and budget permit.) So, it was love at first sight when I opened The Love & Lemon Cookbook and titles like Creamy Miso Brussels Sprout Fettuccine and Asparagus Edamame Salad with Tarragon winked and beckoned me to dance. (Next to Italy, my home country of Japan takes top billing in Jeanine’s heart.)
The Japanese cuisine influenced recipes in The Love & Lemons Cookbook are stellar. However, my penchant for sweet drove me to Jeanine’s desserts. I dove first into the Love & Lemons Cardamom Apple Crumble, followed by the Vegan Carrot Waffles. I topped the waffles with Coconut Cream. Japanese matcha green tea was added to one batch of Love & Lemons inspired Coconut Cream…And it was divine!
Both recipes required spelt flour. Turns out the ancient wheat adds a wholesome, subtle nutty taste. For those conscious about sugar, not a grain or mention of the white stuff did I see in the cookbook. The Apple Cardamom Oat Crumble contains a bit of brown sugar. But, that’s it. As for the Vegan Carrot Waffles, Jeanine prescribed two tablespoons of maple syrup. My sweet tooth dictated three. Again, the recipes are flexible and are amenable to adaptation. Japanese yuzu citrus juice is bitterer than its cousin, the lemon. I found it to be a fantastic contrast to the sweet Fuji apples I chose for the crisp. Click on the links above for the original Love & Lemon recipes.
I’d be so happy to hear about your forays into your kitchen filled with Love & Lemons. I know you are going to love this book as much as I do.
- 2 cups spelt flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 generous cup grated carrots
- ¾ cup organic dried cherries
- 2 cups almond milk
- ¼ cup melted coconut oil
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup
- Pinch of sea salt
- 2 (14-ounce) cans thick coconut cream
- ½ cup sifted powdered sugar
- 2½ tablespoons Japanese green tea matcha powder or cocoa
- Preheat your waffle maker per manufacturer’s instructions.
- Whisk together the spelt flour, baking powder, flaxseed, cinnamon and salt in a large bowl.
- In a separate bowl, combine the carrots, cherries, almond milk, coconut oil, vanilla and maple syrup.
- Add the mixture to the spelt flour bowl. Stir until incorporated.
- Pour manufacturer recommended amount of batter into the hot waffle iron. Bake for 4 to 5 minutes.
- Repeat until all the waffles are cooked.
- Serve with Japanese Green Tea Matcha Coconut Cream or Green Tea Matcha Ice Cream.
- Refrigerate the coconut cream overnight upside down. Drain the coconut water and place the thick cream into a bowl.
- Whip up the coconut cream until fluffy. (About 3 minutes.)
- Whisk the powdered sugar and matcha together.
- Beat into the coconut cream.
For the coconut cream, substitute cocoa powder for the matcha if you prefer chocolate cream. Or simply sprinkle matcha or cocoa powder over the coconut cream. Plain coconut cream is perfectly delicious, too!
Editor’s note: The author of this review purchased her own copy of The Love and Lemons Cookbook: An Apple-to-Zucchini Celebration of Impromptu Cooking. No compensation was received from the publisher. Links to the cookbook are affiliate links.
We do send enormous thanks to the publisher, Avery, who is sponsoring one copy of this wonderful cookbook for a giveaway, open to US residents only. Please leave a comment on the post – Which country’s cuisine inspires you to cook more at home? to enter. The rafflecopter has several options for earning more chances to win! The more you do, the better your chances. No purchase necessary. The winner will be will be notified by email. If the winner does not respond in 48 hours, an alternate winner will be selected.
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