July 19, 2015

I was wandering in Carroll Gardens after a marathon of a meeting last week, when I stopped in Avlee for a quick lunch. Their Stafele salad was so simple and tasty that decided to recreate it at home. I’m not always a fan of fruit in salad (I blame the warm tangerines that we ate on salads during holidays growing up, sorry family!!), but the grapes add a nice sweetness to the savory gouda and crunch of the walnuts. In theory you could try this fruit-cheese-nuts combo a million different ways and really impress your friends… In fact, I did just that last week!

It’s so hot that I can’t imagine turning on the oven, so it might be salad every meal until September.

Bba

Ingredients

– 4 cups Baby Kale
– 1 cup Red Seedless Grapes, halved
– 1/8 Cup Toasted Walnuts
– 3 ounces Aged Gouda, chopped up
– 3 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
– 1-2 Tbsp Fresh Lemon Juice
– 1 Tsp Dijon Mustard
– Salt & Pepper

Directions

In a bowl, whisk together lemon juice, olive oil and mustard until combined. Drizzle dressing over baby kale in a bowl, tossing until the leaves are well coated. Season with salt & pepper. Add in grapes, cheese and nuts and combine with kale. Plate and seaons again with salt & pepper to taste.


December 4, 2014

A few weeks ago we got a surprise package in the mail from our friend Tim with a copy of Hiking the Road to Ruins by David Steinberg enclosed. Chris and I have been spending more and more time exploring on our weekends, so we were very excited to receive this unexpected guide to the kinds of weirdo places we love (Thanks Tim!) Since I had a venue walk through in Westchester on Sunday, we decided to take advantage of the trip and make it a half work/half adventure day. After my meeting, we ate in Scarsdale at the Candlelight Inn – hello best egg salad sandwich ever – before heading up a windy road to Tackamack County Park to explore the long-abandoned army trails. We got a little nervous as we got further and further up and realized “oh.. there’s actual snow here…” and glanced sheepishly at our beat up Converse and thin flannel. We’re not quite hikers yet, folks, still a ways to go…

Steinberg’s book has a very detailed written explanation of how to get to the tunnels, plus a tiny hand written map to help you get where you’re going. We had read an account of the area being a hotbed of evil/Satantic occurrences, so I definitely used this opportunity to misquote Blair Witch Project, one of my favorite “hiking” activities. The walk was fairly straight forward, as we wound up through the park, through a residential area, through a pine grove and finally hit a low wall that was the ceiling of the tunnels.

The army tunnels are the remains of what once was Camp Bluefields, a National Guard rifle range which closed in 1912. After the grounds were used by the YWCA and the ROTC, the area was eventually abandoned after World War II, where it’s sat and deteriorated ever since. With miles of available cement walls, layers of graffiti cover every available inch, as well as some of the trees surrounding, almost like a Tacheles in the woods.

Bored Vegetarian Abandoned Army Tunnels-1
Bored Vegetarian Abandoned Army Tunnels-2
Bored Vegetarian Abandoned Army Tunnels-3
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Bored Vegetarian Abandoned Army Tunnels-10
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Bored Vegetarian Abandoned Army Tunnels-12
Bored Vegetarian Abandoned Army Tunnels-13

We didn’t bring headlamps along, so didn’t venture too far into the tunnels, but you can walk the stretch of the area without much daylight, if you dare. We’d like to go back in another season to explore the other side and bring more lighting to explore, but overall it was a cool place to explore and capture in photos. On to the next one…


August 25, 2014

Chris and I have been spendingmore weekends exploring the Hudson Valley over the last year. Highway 9 shoots up through Manhattan and winds along the river until slowly everything loud and crowded blurs and disappears behind us and all we see is lush green mountains. A few weeks ago we climbed Mt. Beacon in our best city slicker hiking gear (aka $10 shoes from Rainbow and skinny jeans) and took in the miles long views from the top. Last weekend we spent drove up to New Paltz and explored Lake Minnewaska. The city has its benefits but I’m sure wouldn’t mind trading it in to see this every day…

Hudson Valley Views Bethany Pickard Vegetarian Blog
Hudson Valley Bridge Bethany Pickard Vegetarian Blog
Hudson Valley Views Lake Minnewaska Bethany Pickard Vegetarian Blog
Hudson Valley Views Lake Minnewaska Mountain Bethany Pickard Vegetarian Blog

July 16, 2014
Grilled Peach Salad the Bored Vegetarian

Ingredients

– 1 Ripe Yellow Peach
– 1 Small Ball of Burrata Cheese
– Fresh Bibb Lettuce
– 1 Ear of Sweet Corn, husk removed
– 1 Handful of Fresh Basil
– 1/8 of Fresh Baguette, sliced thin
– 1/4 cup Roasted Cashews (unsalted)
– 1-2 Tbsp Balsamic Reduction
– Extra Virgin Olive Oil
– Salt & Pepper to Taste

Directions

Brush corn with canola oil and grill on a stovetop or charcoal grill on each side until slightly charred. Allow to cool and then slice off kernels into a bowl. Cut peach in half and remove pit of peach. Cut into large wedges (they don’t have to be perfect). Brush the sides of the peach with canola oil and grill on all sides until tender. Remove from heat and set aside. Brush sliced baguette with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Toast in the oven until lightly browned and crunchy. To assemble salad, layer lettuce leaves and drizzle with olive oil. Add pieces of basil and chard corn. Tear Burrata and place around leaves. Layer with grilled peaches and add cashews and “croutons”. Drizzle with more olive oil and the balsamic reduction. Season to taste with salt and pepper.


June 9, 2014

There comes a time in every girl’s life that she must witness one of her dearest friends, with whom she once frequently ate Trader Joe’s black bean soup paired with Vino Verde before late night dance sessions at Great Scott in Allston, MA, get married on an island in the Puget Sound. That time is less than three weeks away!

To celebrate my friend Laura’s upcoming nuptials, I joined a group of awesome ladies in the woods of Massachusetts in one of the oddest, most delightful of places, The RoundHouse . Though I took many photographs, there was no real way to capture the hidden treasures that we found in every inch of the house: A closet full of costumes; themed sleeping cubbies with dream journals; a hidden tunnel; locked doors with mysteries behind them; a kitchen cabinet full of different cheese graters. The curiosities were endless and kept us up late into the night, learning how to ride the unicycle and play the xylophone. It was three days of making a raucous for no reason and celebrating Laura’s last big hoorah before married life.

But outside of the uninhibited goofiness, it was the view, from high above the Connecticut River that really did it for me. Away from the constant grind of this city I live in, I found peace and quiet and it was wonderful.

The Bored Vegetarian Round House Views
The Bored Vegetarian Picnic Tables
The Bored Vegetarian Round House
The Bored Vegetarian Plants
The Bored Vegetarian Catwalk
The Bored Vegetarian Hole
The Bored Vegetarian Raccoon
The Bored Vegetarian Pantry
The Bored Vegetarian Stained Glass
The Bored Vegetarian Library
The Bored Vegetarian Donkey
The Bored Vegetarian Green View
The Bored Vegetarian Girls Walking

May 16, 2014

In February I bought an old Subaru to commute to a job I didn’t keep, but so far I’ve kept the car (and found a job I want to keep!) Though I never expected or wanted to own a car in New York, the bonus is the ability to getting to explore new places without renting a car or planning too far ahead.

Last weekend, Chris and I headed to City Island, a 1.5 mile island in the Bronx. The island has a decidedly New England coastal town feel minus the public beaches and Boston accents. The two-laned road there reminded me of taking the road out to Cape Cod in the summertime, as if everyone within 200 miles had decided that this was the weekend to go.

We drove down the main drag to see what restaurant options there were (hint: not veg) and ended up at Johnny’s Reef Restaurant at the other end. Policemen were strategically placed along the way to direct traffic for the various seafood shacks lining the street.

Johnny’s is set up similar to a food court, with food stations with various seafood options lining the wall and plenty of tables in the middle and on their giant patio overlooking the Long Island Sound. Chris was eager for some seafood so I resigned myself to a lunch of french fries and a soda, because I am the picture of healthy living.

After that we explored some weird antique stores, some abandoned ships and a graveyard overlooking the water. All in a productive Sunday!

City Island Roof The Bored Vegetarian
City Island Food The Bored Vegetarian
City Island Napkins The Bored Vegetarian
Johnny's Reef Restaurant The Bored Vegetarian
Lady Rage The Bored Vegetarian
Broken Boat The Bored Vegetarian
City Island Hidden House The Bored Vegetarian
City Island Trees
City Island Games

April 30, 2014

The Bored Vegetarian turns 4 years old on May 2nd. When I started the blog in 2010, I was working from home for a mobile tech company and needed a project to keep me a bit more creatively engaged. The Bored Vegetarian provided the perfect avenue for combining my love for food, photos and words (not to mention over-sharing on the internet) and get a bit better at all three. Looking at some of my first posts, it’s clear that practice does indeed make perfect, or at least much much better.

This weekend I did something I haven’t done in far too many months: made brunch. The swiss chard and leeks were flavorful and the cream added a rich fattiness to the dish, perfect for dipping bread.

Swiss Chard and Leek Baked Eggs The Bored Vegetarian

Ingredients

– 1 bunch Swiss Chard
– 3 Leeks
– 3 cloves Garlic, minced
– 3/4 cup Heavy Cream
– 2-3 Eggs
– 1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese
– Extra Virgin Olive Oil
– Salt & Pepper to taste
– Fresh baguette (optional)

Directions

Rinse swiss chard and remove large stems. Chop greens into 2 inch pieces. In a large pot, heat 1/2 inch of water over medium heat and add greens. Cover and stir until the leaves wilt and are tender. Remove from heat and drain remaining water. Slice off the root end of each leek and discard. Thinly chop each leek from the white until the light green part. In a large saute pan, saute chopped leeks in olive oil over low/medium heat. Once tender, add in chopped garlic and saute until fragrant. Add in wilted swiss chard and combine until mixed well. Add in cream and continue to stir over medium heat until it starts to thicken. Salt and pepper to taste. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. In a baking pan (I used a low ceramic dish), spread the chard and leek mixture. Make deep wells for the eggs. Carefully crack each egg into a well. Bake in the upper third of your oven for 15-30 minutes (check on them to see how they’re coming along), or until the white are the eggs are firm and the yolks still runny. Once they are close to being done, sprinkle with cheese before putting back in the oven to finish. Serve hot with bread.


April 16, 2014

This post feels a bit like an awkward first date. My inclination is to comment on the weather (which sucks) and how the seasons are finally changing (slowly), but in truth there have been heavier things weighing on me the last couple of months. It’s amazing to see how unhappiness in one area of your life can completely wipe away the joy you find in the others, but am happy that I’ve made the decision to choose to pursue joy, even if it means things are a bit up in the air at the moment. Spring is the season of rebirth & growth after all.

Roasted Asparagus Soup by The Bored Vegetarian

Ingredients

– 2 lbs Asparagus, trimmed and chopped into 2 inch pieces
– 4 cloves roasted garlic (learn to roast it here!)
– 1/2 Onion, chopped
– 1 1/2 cups Vegetable Broth
– 2 cups Milk
– Juice from 1 Lemon
– Salt & Pepper
– Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spread asparagus on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Toss to coat and season with salt and pepper. Roast in oven until tender, about 25 minutes. While the asparagus is roasting, saute the chopped onion in a saute pan with a bit of olive oil and salt until tender. Combine the roasted asparagus and sauteed onion in a large sauce pan. Top with vegetable broth and using a hand blender, blend the broth with the asparagus and onion until it begins to liquify (you can also use a blender). Add the milk and continue to blend, seasoning with salt and pepper as you go. Finish with fresh lemon juice. Over low heat, bring the soup to a simmer for an additional 10-15 mins or so. Remove from heat and strain soup with a mesh cone strainer. Garnish with a bit of creme fraiche and toasted pinenuts and serve hot.


March 9, 2014

Dead Horse Bay is a small body of water within the Brooklyn Marine Park. The area once was home to Barren Island, which was a trash and dead animal dump for Brooklyn, Manhattan and the Bronx. In the 1920’s the island and its trash was buried to create Floyd Bennett Field, New York’s first municipal airport. In the 1950’s, the landfill cap burst, exposing the area to a century’s worth of garbage. You can still find old bottles, shoes and other pieces of the lives of the people who once lived there…

Dead Horse Bay Reeds The Bored Vegetarian
Dead Horse Bay The Bored Vegetarian
Dead Horse Bay Tree The Bored Vegetarian
Dead Horse Bay Beach The Bored Vegetarian
Dead Horse Bay Shoe The Bored Vegetarian
Dead Horse Bay Organized Bored Vegetarian
Dead Horse Bay Bunny the Bored Vegetarian
Dead Horse Bay Pot The Bored Vegetarian
Dead Horse Bay Landfill The Bored Vegetarian
Dead Horse Bay Bottles
Dead Horse Bay Heart The Bored Vegetarian
Dead Horse Bay Iron
Dead Horse Bay Knife & Spoon the Bored Vegetarian
Dead Horse Bay Rust The Bored Vegetarian
Dead Horse Bay Water
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February 16, 2014
Red Beet Gnocchi with Sage Brown Butter Sauce and Walnuts The Bored Vegetarian

Vegan January has come and gone and though I have one more vegan post to make, I thought this beet gnocchi was a bit more fitting for the Valentine’s Day holiday (although a couple of days late!) I’m still perfecting my gnocchi-making technique, but I love the gorgeous color and hint of earthiness the beets bring to this recipe. You’ll likely have a bit of leftover beet puree with this, so I encourage you to make a Chocolate Beet Cake with the remainder.

Ingredients

(adapted from Food & Wine)
2 pounds medium-sized Beets, scrubbed, tops and bottoms cut off
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Sea Salt
Fresh Pepper
1 cup Ricotta
1 large Egg, beaten lightly
pinch of Nutmeg
3/4 cup Romano Cheese, shredded
3 cups Flour, plus extra
1/2 cup Walnuts, chopped and toasted
1 1/2 cups Unsalted Butter
1/2 cup fresh Sage, chopped
2 cloves Garlic, minced
Fresh Lemon juice
Fresh Sage leaves (optional)

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a baking pan drizzle beets with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Add 1/4 cup of water to the pan and cover tightly with aluminum foil. Roast in the oven for about 1 hour or until beets are soft. Remove and allow to cool. Once you’re able to handle them, use your hands to peel away the skins. Use a vegetable peeler if needed. Cut beets into cubes and puree in a food processor. In a standing mixer (which I don’t own – I used my Cuisinart with a plastic paddle and pulsed to control the speed), combine 1 1/2 cups of the beet puree with ricotta, romano, egg, nutmeg and 1 Tablespoon of salt on low/medium speed. Scrape the sides of the bowl and slowly sprinkle in the flour with the mixer on low/medium speed until it just comes together. On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough until smooth and a little sticky. Don’t over-knead – you want the dough to feel light. Cover the dough and let it sit at room temp for about a half hour.

While the dough is sitting, melt the butter over low/medium heat. Bring melted butter to a golden brown color and remove from heat. Strain through cheese cloth to remove the solids. Set aside. In a saute pan, fry the whole sage leaves in a bit of olive oil until they crisp up. Remove and allow to cool on a paper towel. Bring salted water to a boil in a large pot. Prepare an ice bath and keep nearby. Divide the dough into 8-10 pieces and roll each one into 1/2 inch thick ropes. Cut each rope into 1/2 inch pieces. Boil in batches, letting the gnocchi simmer about 1 minute past when they float. Remove with a slotted spoon and put into ice bath to chill while you cook the remaining.

Once you’ve finished with the gnocchi, saute the garlic in a bit of olive oil over low heat until fragrant. Add the brown butter and chopped fresh sage and stir for a minute or so. Stir in fresh lemon juice. Add gnocchi and combine until the gnocchi turns a rich red. Season well with salt and pepper. Toss in walnuts. Serve hot garnished with crispy sage leaves.