Category Archives: Vegetarian

Amy's+Kitchen, Organic+Prepared+Foods, Healthy+Frozen+Foods, Non+GMO, Amy's+Organics

Amy’s — a Natural Foods Staple for 30 Years!

Amy’s is a California Original!

When we visited Northern Califoria this year, we were excited to tour Amy’s Kitchen in Petaluma. We were surprised and impressed with their hands-on approach. I expected floor to ceiling stainless steel machinery doing all the work, but what we saw was hundreds of dedicated workers hand making and packaging Amy’s products. 

More than 30 years ago, Rachel and Andy were expecting a baby, and there wasn’t anything in the store to satisfy the need for healthy, convenient, ready-made meals. With Rachel on bed rest, they realized that there were likely many others in the same boat. Once their baby was born, they started making their first recipe, Pot Pie, to sell locally. Their daughter Amy and Amy’s Kitchen were born in the same year!

They launched their company, thinking that they would just make those delicious Pot Pies, but requests for more variety started coming in. They started adding other products, from Pizza to Canned Soups. They heard about people with allergies, food sensitivities, and special diets, so Vegetarian, Vegan, and Gluten-Free offerings were created. Since Organic is also non-GMO, Amy’s is also committed to GMO-free ingredients.

Amy's+Kitchen, Organic+Prepared+Foods, Healthy+Frozen+Foods, Non+GMO, Amy's+Organics

Amy’s has always been passionate and committed to organically grown produce, even in the beginning when there was no Organic Certification. They work closely with their farmers to make sure they have the best ingredients possible.

And now, thirty years later, Amy’s is a household name. You can read more of Amy’s story by clicking  here.

When I had busy and active kids at home, we almost always had Amy’s Burritos in the refrigerator for a quick snack before gymnastics or soccer. The cheese enchiladas were also a favorite, and it’s fun to see my grandchildren enjoying the same products!

Amy's+kitchen, amys+kitchen

Amy’s has a desire to change the face of fast food, and in 2015 they opened Amy’s Drive Through in Rohnart Park. It’s a sustainability model, with solar panels and a living roof.

Amy's+Kitchen, Organic+Prepared+Foods, Healthy+Frozen+Foods, Non+GMO, Amy's+Organics

They have delicious burgers, fries, shakes, pizza, burritos, and much more. I hope they bring their Drive Thru to Southern California!

Amy's+Kitchen, Organic+Prepared+Foods, Healthy+Frozen+Foods, Non+GMO, Amy's+Organics
yummmmm… Chili Fries!

I love visiting the producers of our amazing products! Thanks, Amy’s for hosting us!

Love,

Lassen’s

Amy's+Kitchen, Organic+Prepared+Foods, Healthy+Frozen+Foods, Non+GMO, Amy's+Organics

Amy's+Kitchen, Organic+Prepared+Foods, Healthy+Frozen+Foods, Non+GMO, Amy's+Organics

 

danish+cucumber+salad, danish+cucumber+salad+recipe, cucumber+salad+recipe, cucumber+salad, easy+recipes, healthy+cucumber+recipes

Danish Cucumber Salad

Salad, Side Dish, Appetizer, Sandwich Topping — You Will Love this Simple and Easy Recipe!

danish+cucumber+salad, danish+cucumber+salad+recipe, cucumber+salad+recipe, cucumber+salad, easy+recipes, healthy+cucumber+recipes

If you have enjoyed a Danish Smörgåsbord (or Swedish, for that matter) you have probably noticed a multitude of small serving dishes with little pickles of all kinds, red cabbage (rødkål, see Oda’s recipe here), peas and carrots, cucumbers, pickled beets, and other items. These can be enjoyed as toppings for open-faced sandwiches (smørrebrød), or as a small side dish. The Danes use them as  Americans use cranberry sauce at Thanksgiving. These tasty sides are not reserved for holidays, but are everyday kind of dishes. They add such a pop of color and taste to many meals, and I love them!

The Lassen family loves to have dinners together, and when we make the assignment list,  Cucumber Salad is nearly always included.  This is one of my favorite Danish recipes, and also one of the simplest. It adds a great flair and pop of flavor to basic meals and fancy ones alike. Oda, our founder, taught me how to make this salad, and when she and Hilmar downsized their living space, I inherited her Bosch Mixer with the slicing and grating attachments. I used it to slice the cucumbers for this post!

danish+cucumber+salad, danish+cucumber+salad+recipe, cucumber+salad+recipe, cucumber+salad, easy+recipes, healthy+cucumber+recipes

Oda’s Danish Cucumber Salad

Serves 4

You’ll Need:

  • 1 organic English Cucumber, or 4 Persian Cucumbers (please see *note for special instructions if only regular cucumbers are available)
  • Salt
  • 1/4 cup unbleached sugar — you could also use agave syrup, or any other sweetener if desired
  • 3 TBSP apple cider vinegar
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

danish+cucumber+salad, danish+cucumber+salad+recipe, cucumber+salad+recipe, cucumber+salad, easy+recipes, healthy+cucumber+recipes

Instructions:

  • Wash and dry the cucumbers. English and Persian cucumbers do not need to be peeled.
  • *Regular cucumbers have thicker skins. When that’s all that’s available, I partially peel the cucumbers so that a little bit of skin remains. This adds great color and a bit more crunch. If the regular cucumbers have tough seeds, I cut them in half lengthwise and use a spoon to scoop out the seeds.
  • Slice the cucumbers very thinly. If you do not have a food processor or other tool, you can use the side of a box grater — there’s a handy slicer there.
  • Place the slices in a strainer over a bowl, and then sprinkle generously with salt.
  • Stir the cucumbers so that the salt is blended in.
  • Mix the sugar and vinegar in a small bowl, and stir to dissolve.
  • Let sit for about 15 minutes. You’ll see lots of juice under the strainer

danish+cucumber+salad, danish+cucumber+salad+recipe, cucumber+salad+recipe, cucumber+salad, easy+recipes, healthy+cucumber+recipes

  • With clean hands, squeeze as much moisture as possible out of the cucumbers.
  • Drain and wipe the bowl, then return the cucumbers
  • Pour the sugar and vinegar over the cucumbers, and stir to coat. 
  • Let the salad sit for another 10 minutes or so, mixing occassionally. 
  • Add pepper and salt to taste
  • Serve! We like to provide small dishes on the side of each plate for this salad, since there is a lot of juice.

danish+cucumber+salad, danish+cucumber+salad+recipe, cucumber+salad+recipe, cucumber+salad, easy+recipes, healthy+cucumber+recipes

This salad will last several days in the refrigerator. 

Enjoy this taste of Denmark, straight from the Lassen home!

danish+cucumber+salad, danish+cucumber+salad+recipe, cucumber+salad+recipe, cucumber+salad, easy+recipes, healthy+cucumber+recipes

Love,

Lassen’s

Grain-Free Banana Coconut Cookies

If you avoid grains but still get a hankering for cookies, then get ready for your life to change. With no added sugar they’re pretty guiltless, too!
We took some liberties with adding peanut butter and chocolate to these cookies, but the banana and coconut base cookie can be used with whatever you dream up. Share whatever delicious varieties you come up with by tagging #lassens on social media and commenting on this post!

Enjoy 🙂

Print Recipe
Grain-Free Banana Coconut Cookies
Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine Breakfast, Dessert
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings
Cookies
Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine Breakfast, Dessert
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings
Cookies
Instructions
Toppings
  1. After cooling for about 5 minutes, apply a dollop of peanut butter to the top of each cookie. Place in the freezer. While the cookies are cooling, melt the chocolate.
  2. Dip the bottom of each cookie in chocolate and place on a piece of parchment paper. If desired, drizzle any leftover chocolate over the top of the cookies. Once the chocolate has solidified these cookies are ready to eat! The cookies last in a sealed container for a few days... if they make it that long.
Share this Recipe

Build a Salad Worth Eating!

Build a Salad Worth Eating!

Written by Denae

There are a lot of ways to make a kickin’ salad. Leftovers can be a salad go-to if you want to make sure they don’t go to waste. I’ve used baked chicken, fajita veggies, and fruit on it’s last leg to make sure I’m not throwing away food. Don’t be scared of a few bruises, my husband always says, “The uglier the fruit, the more delicious it’ll taste.”

Below I’m whipped up a lovely infographic to help you whip up a legit salad. A filling dinner doesn’t always have to take a long time to prepare.  

Love, 
Lassens

Follow us on:  Twitter — Instagram — Facebook — Pinterest 

Vegetarian Greek Pitas with Tzatziki Sauce

Vegetarian Greek Pitas with Tzatziki Sauce

Written by Denae


Print Recipe
Vegetarian Greek Pitas with Tzatziki Sauce
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20-25 minutes
Servings
people
Ingredients
Vegetables
Tzatziki Sauce
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20-25 minutes
Servings
people
Ingredients
Vegetables
Tzatziki Sauce
Instructions
  1. Preheat over to 400 degrees. Chop up your vegetables in to bite size pieces.
  2. In a large bowl combine the vegetables. Drizzle with olive oil, add all the spices, and mix together.
  3. Spread the vegetables on a baking sheet and bake for about 20 minutes, or until vegetables can be easily pierced with a fork.
  4. While the vegetables are roasting, make the Tzatziki Sauce. Combine Greek yogurt, finely chopped cucumber, lemon juice, dill, minced garlic, and salt to taste.
  5. Serve the vegetables over a warmed pita bread and drizzle with Tzatziki Sauce.
Recipe Notes

dsc_0521edit

Share this Recipe
pasta+puttanesca, kalamata+olive+pasta, easy+pasta+recipe, vegetarian+pasta+sauce, easy+pasta+sauce

Another Quick Dish–this one can be Vegetarian!

Kalamata Olive Pasta…Otherwise Known as Pasta Puttanesca

lassensloves.com, Lassen's, Lassens, Pasta+Puttanesca,Kalamata+Olives, Caprese+Salad
 
I always have the ingredients for this easy Italian Pasta dish on hand for those busy days when I just don’t want to cook, but I want to eat!  This dinner takes only about 30 minutes, including the salad shown!

Kalamata Olive Pasta (Pasta Puttanesca)

(This recipe is adapted from one found on the Epicurious website)  Serves 6

 

 

lassensloves.com, Lassen's, Lassens, Pasta+Puttanesca,Kalamata+Olives, Caprese+Salad
 

You will need:

  • 1 pound whole wheat spaghetti
  • 5 cloves organic garlic, minced or forced through a garlic press
  • 1 TBSP Wild Caught Anchovy Paste
  • 1/2 tsp hot red-pepper flakes, or to taste
  • 1/3 cup organic extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 28-oz can of Muir Glen organic diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup drained pitted Kalamata olives
  • 2 TBSP drained organic capers
  • salt/pepper to taste
  • 3/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh organic basil

Begin:

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil
Puree the tomatoes in a blender (I used my small food processor because my blender was broken!  Boo! But it worked alright)

 

lassensloves.com, Lassen's, Lassens, Pasta+Puttanesca,Kalamata+Olives, Caprese+Salad

 

Mince or press the garlic
Coarsely chop the olives
When the water boils, add the pasta and cook until al dente
 
Heat the oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat
Add the garlic, anchovy paste, and red pepper flakes, and stir occasionally until fragrant.  This only takes about 2 minutes.
 
lassensloves.com, Lassen's, Lassens, Pasta+Puttanesca,Kalamata+Olives, Caprese+Salad

Add the tomato puree to the garlic oil 

lassensloves.com, Lassen's, Lassens, Pasta+Puttanesca,Kalamata+Olives, Caprese+Salad

Stir and then add the Kalamata olives and capers, then bring to a gentle simmer and add salt and pepper to taste 

lassensloves.com, Lassen's, Lassens, Pasta+Puttanesca, Kalamata+Olives, Caprese+Salad

Meanwhile, chop the basil, and check the pasta to see if it is done.  When it is al dente, drain.  You can toss the pasta into the sauce if you would like.  Or serve the pasta and sauce separately.   

Make the salad–this takes only about 5 minutes!

Easy Caprese Salad

 

This is one of my favs!

You Will Need:

  • Mozzarella Fresca (Fresh Mozzarella), drained.  I like the little balls–they are about 1/2″ rounds
  • Organic cherry or grape tomatoes, cut in half
  • Organic Basil, coarsely chopped
  • Organic Balsamic Vinegar
  • Organic extra-virgin olive oil
  • Fresh-ground salt and pepper, to taste
Just toss everything together!  I do about half the amount of Mozzarella Fresca to the amount of tomatoes (2 cups of tomatoes, 1 cup of Mozzarella Fresca), then add the basil, vinegar, oil, salt and pepper to taste

Now Serve!

Stir the basil into the pasta sauce, and pass shredded parmesan cheese, if you’d like.  Everything is ready!
 
We like to have some Lassen’s Baked Rosemary Bread with balsamic vinegar and olive oil on the side.

 

lassensloves.com, Lassen's, Lassens, Pasta+Puttanesca, Kalamata+Olives, Caprese+Salad
 

Seriously!  It’s dinner in about a half hour!

This is a perfect meal for a busy summer day when you don’t want to heat up the kitchen!  
 
Happy pasta-ing!
 
Love,
 
Lassen’s
vegan+zucchini+lasagne, vegan+lasagne, zucchini+recipes, healthy+lasagne

Vegan Zucchini Lasagna

A True Labor of Love

…and there’s so much love!

Vegan+Zucchini+Lasagne 

Most of the good things in life are at least a little labor intensive.
Building a house, painting a mural, planting a garden…
but the outcome is always oh, so nice and oh, so worth it.
As Stephanie, our Lassen’s Ventura Sample Captain confessed, such was the case with this recipe for Vegan Zucchini Lasagna. It’s just a lot of chopping and dicing, which can all be done ahead of time and stored in the fridge until you’re ready to bake. Paleo, Vegan and Gluten-Free! Oh yeah, and the taste is fantastic!

You’ll Need:

Vegan+Zucchini+Lasagne
  • 2 cups walnuts
  • 1 eggplant
  • 2 red bell peppers
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 Tb oregano
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup fresh chopped basil
  • 8 zucchini squashes (cut into thin strips)
  • 3 tsp thyme
  • 1 bunch black kale
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 lemons (juiced – save peels for zesting)
  • 1 jar of marinara sauce (25 oz)
  • 4Tb extra virgin olive oil
Vegan+Zucchini+Lasagne

 

 
Cucina Antica Garlic Marinara is now sale this month (May, 2013)!
 
Instructions:
Preheat Oven to 450
Dice eggplant, red onions, bell peppers and garlic. Place in a saucepan on medium heat with zest from lemon, olive oil, thyme and oregano. Stir constantly for 10 minutes or until eggplant is tender. Add kale and lemon juice and simmer for another 2 minutes. 
Set Kale mix aside in a bowl.
 
On medium heat simmer zucchini strips for 8 minutes – flip regularly. Place 1 layer of zucchini strips on the bottom of a 9×13 baking dish. With a spoon, evenly spread half of the kale mixture over the zucchini strips, covering it completely. Pour 1 cup marinara sauce evenly over the top of the kale mixture.Top with another layer of zucchini strips followed by the kale mixture and then one more zucchini layer. Pour the rest of the marinara evenly over the final zucchini layer. Sprinkle the top with Nutritional yeast and walnuts.
Bake for 30 minutes.
 
Vegan+Zucchini+Lasagne
 
love,
 
Lassen’s
forks+over+knives, documentary+review, vegan+diet, healthy+eating, earth+friendly+eating, earth+friendly+diet

Documentary Review–Forks Over Knives

Look at all of those gorgeous fruits and vegetables!

organic+produce
Just in time for Spring and lots of gorgeous produce, I watched the documentary, “Forks Over Knives.”
 

 

This was a compelling and convincing argument for changing our diet–especially the highly processed animal-based diet of the average American–to a whole-food, plant-based diet.  
organic+produce

 

Of course the documentary begins with all of the scary statistics about the American diet–the change in the last 60 years that has brought a health crisis with Type 2 Diabetes, heart disease, cancers, and obesity.  This doesn’t even begin to mention the billions of dollars spent on drugs, drugs, and more drugs.

When this film was made, the healthcare cost in America was $2.2 trillion, and yet Americans are sicker than ever, and the rate of chronic diseases is ever increasing.

So, the question is posed, “What is the solution?”  “Not another pill.”

 

The film centered on the life-long research and experience of Dr. Colin Campbell and Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn.  They both have spent their professional lives making connections between food and health. 

“Let Food Be Thy Medicine”  (Hippocrates)

 
 

Several other doctors were involved in the film, as well as patients whose lives had been changed.  One of those who changed their diets completely was Lee Fulkerson.  The film followed his journey as he learned of this movement.  He went to see Dr. Matthew Lederman and Dr. Alona Pulde, a husband/wife team. 

 

 

Yikes!

Lee was shocked to see how unhealthy his bloodwork numbers were, especially since he had considered himself generally healthy.  He had an alarmingly high risk factor number for heart disease.
 
 

 

Lee took this very seriously and changed his diet completely to eat only whole-food, plant-based foods.

organic+produce

 

Lee was taken step-by step, from shopping to preparing to eating a whole-food plant-based diet.  Within a few months, his health was vastly improved, and not just by the numbers, but by how he felt.  The documentary also followed several others who have changed their lives and found incredible health benefits.  There was even one woman who was told that she should just go home and prepare to die because of her heart disease.  Instead, she met Dr. Esselstyn and changed the way she ate.  The film was made twenty years after that diagnosis, and she looks younger than she did when she was told to go home and get ready for her demise.

If you’d like to read more, and watch the trailer or the entire film, go to their official website.  They also have recipes and more help to make the switch.

organic+produce

 

I know we feel better when we eat more fruits and vegetables, and cut back on the animal products.  In the coming weeks we will feature recipes and tips to eat better, as well as featured produce.  We have some really beautiful produce at Lassen’s, and you’ll be pleasantly surprised as how affordable it is!

Love,

Lassen’s