lunch at the slow food cafe: apple gouda bacon sandwiches, beet salad & parsnip cupcakes

it’s no secret how much i love the slow food movement. i’m obviously a fan of food, but i’m an even bigger fan of food that’s grown & sold ethically, in a sustainable way that supports & respects the people who grow it. slow food embodies all these values for a price that’s right… about $6 can get you a wonderful sandwich & a thoughtful side, while an additional dollar will get you dessert. if you read on, you’ll not only get to read about some yummy sandwiches & salads, but you’ll also get the recipe to the glorious desserts they made us yesterday!

yesterday’s sandwich options were an open-faced lemon chickpea salad sandwich with feta & spinach or you could get an apple, gouda & bacon jam sandwich (yes, that’s bacon jam, not bacon, jam as a friend asked me).  don got the former while katie & i got the latter. we loved the sandwich, but we were suspicious that they ran out of gouda. regardless, it was still delicious.

on the side, i had the beet, orange & fennel salad (right) while katie had a turnip, leek  & squash salad on a bed of spinach. as usual everything was great.  what an inspiration to use winter vegetables more often. i may have to make a trip to the winter’s farmer’s market this weekend! mmm i’m having visions of pretty beet salads topped with goat cheese fritters.

although everything was good, my favorite part of the  meal was dessert: parsnip cupcakes with spiced cream cheese frosting. i love how they always incorporate vegetables into dessert. a lot of times, desserts are vegan, but you don’t even miss the dairy. although this dessert was not vegan, i still felt semi-healthy eating it since it involved a vegetable. lucky for you (& me), the slow food gods graced us with the recipe to these divine little cupcakes!
parsnip cake

ingredients:
-1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
-1 cup sugar
-1 tbsp ground ginger
-2 tsp baking powder
-1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
-3/4 tsp  plus 1/8 tsp salt
-3 large eggs
-1/2 cup canola or veg oil
-1/2 cup whole milk (i’ll be using skim if i try this recipe)
-1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract, divided
-2 cups (packed) parsnips (about 3 large), peeled & shredded
-1/2 cup walnuts, toasted & chopped

directions:
1) preheat oven to 350 degrees & butter/flour a 13x9x2-inch baking pan.
2) combine dry ingredients — flour, sugar, ground ginger, baking powder, cinnamon, 3/4 tsp salt, nutmeg, allspice & cloves (just noticed the latter three are not listed in the ingredient list…i would probably add a 1/4 tsp at a time of each, to taste) — in large bowl.
3) whisk together wet ingredients — eggs, oil , milk & 1 tsp. vanilla — in medium bowl to combine.
4) pour wet mixture over dry mixture & stir until just combined.
5) stir in parsnips & walnuts.
6) transfer batter to prepared pan & bake until tester inserted into center comes out clean (about 25 minutes). cool cake completely in pan on rack.

the directions did not include the frosting, but i would probably make a sweetened cream cheese frosting & sprinkle pumpkin spice over it.

coming up: this weekend, be on the lookout for the following recipes at sundays, too: a delicious greens & beans recipe with a middle-eastern twist, pulled pork quesadillas & a spicy smoked mozzarella pasta casserole with spinach & roasted red peppers.

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About Christina

Milwaukee-based bon vivant. Lover of food, yoga, design, good words & loving kindness.
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One Response to lunch at the slow food cafe: apple gouda bacon sandwiches, beet salad & parsnip cupcakes

  1. Anna says:

    i want the lemon chickpea thing. when can i visit.

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