Monday, December 11, 2006

Christmas Limas

Happy Holidays! Shmoo's final lunchbox before winter vacation features some very merry Christmas Limas with Chestnuts and Brussels Sprouts. Christmas Lima Beans pair beautifully with the traditional mix of sweet chestnuts and Brussels Sprouts. The Brussels sprouts are finely shredded and almost disappear into the dish -- a nice way to get sneaky with those sprouts if your family doesn't take to them whole.

Below the Christmas Limas is a bit of wholewheat roll and a Peppermint Candy Tart (I veganized the recipe by substituting 3 tablespoons soft silken tofu for the egg, and Earth Balance and soymilk for the butter and milk).

Speaking of peppermints, I trimmed some radishes to look like peppermints and packed them with a bit of Vegenaise mixed with lemon and dill for dipping. Finally, sliced starfruit and fresh pomegranate seeds look very festive together.

The sweet lima beans were a big hit -- a great dish to bring to a holiday dinner or potluck. The tarts tasted like sugar cookies topped with peppermint frosting -- yum! The pomegranate seeds stained the starfruit a bit in the lunchbox, but what a lovely combination it made, all the same. 4 ho-ho-hos!


craftydabbler said...

When I first looked at the lunch box I saw the radishes and thought they were candy, then I started reading and got to the part about the Peppermint Candy Tart. I thought, she doesn't usually put two desserts in his lunch. Of course I kept reading. I think I will have to do that to some radishes, it is very clever.

DDawnC said...

This main dish sounds wonderful- I love brussels! I have a couple Qs about ingredients, though:
1.) Would the chestnuts I see packed in jars with some kind of liquid work for this dish, if I drain them? I've never used them before.
2.) I've never noticed "Christmas Lima Beans" at the grocery store. Do you get them someplace special, or do I just need to look a little harder?
Happy Holidays, Schmoo Family!

Jennifershmoo said...

>>1.) Would the chestnuts I see packed in jars with some kind of liquid work for this dish, if I drain them? I've never used them before.

I've never used them either. I love love LOVE vacuum sealed packages of chestnuts (I get mine from Trader Joe's), and that's what I use. Are the jarred kind the same? Anyone?

2.) I've never noticed "Christmas Lima Beans" at the grocery store. Do you get them someplace special, or do I just need to look a little harder?

I picked mine up at my local Seventh Day Adventist health food store. You can see a picture and order them online here:

Table4Five said...

I can't get over the fact that Shmoo eats radishes! I can't get anyone in my family to even touch them!

Caty said...

What do you and shmoo think of starfruit? I've had it a couple of times and hated it. Have I just been unlucky or did you just use it for its prettiness?

Happy holidays.

Koby said...

The starfruit and pomegranate look so lovely together! I would've never thought to put the two together.

Caty-- I personally enjoy starfruit, but I have a feeling it's probably not for everyone. It's not quite as sweet as some other fruits, a bit tangy.

Eleni Binge said...

nice! I love the radishes...I thought they were candy too and was going to try and find the recipe.
I just received your cookbook(s), and can't wait to start using mine. I'm sending one copy to my brother and another to my cousin, for xmas, both of whom have young (non veg) kids. Not sure if the kids will see it as a gift to them, since it isn't a train set, but maybe in the long run...
thanks again.


Brooke said...

I love your festive little light string around the lunch box! And napkin too! Too cute.

Jennifershmoo said...

>>I can't get over the fact that Shmoo eats radishes!

At this point I think he'd eat cardboard if I packed it with Vegenaise for dipping.

>>What do you and shmoo think of starfruit?

I think they're worth getting at times just for the look of them, mixed with other fruit. Shmoo didn't like the first one we tried -- it was very tart. This one was sweeter, and shmoo liked it very much.

Desert Dogs California said...

What a clever idea for the radishes!

Merry Christmas :)

funwithyourfood said...

aw I had radishes today but mine didn't look that cute


mary jane said...

You are the best. Such a happy place! Yum!

phoeberae said...

Love Love Love the book. Amazing to have it all the way over here in Australia. So excited to get in and get my hands dirty to make some whole nutritious vegan food for my one year old. I hope by the time she's at school she'll be excited like your little schmoo is by her lunch boxes.

lucy said...

That is such a beautiful lunch - LOVE the starfruit and pomegranate mix... my kids are most impressed again. Were enjoying the book very much - it travelled across the pond very swiftly :)

Our Vegan Christmas Page

Ikingut said...

Your dishes always look so artistic, I love wot u made with the radishes... oh, I just remembered that monster-shaped apples you made, looked wonderful as well xD

Looking forward to trying out this recipe, brown sugar and brussel sprouts sounds really different taste...

In my blog you'll see the vegan babka I baked, it turned out really great and delicious, thanks for sharing the recipe ;D

Gustavo C.

Zachary said...

Brussel Sprouts w/ margarine and brown sugar was the *only* way my mother ever got me to eat those things when I was little. It's still one of my favorite ways to make them! Try it, it's good.

Matt and Bobbie said...

I love the idea of shredding the Brussels sprouts to "hide" them. Even I can sometimes be picky about some veggies--and I'm 22! The radishes are so cute--they really do look like peppermints! I have to try that.

VeraLee said...

Brussels Sprouts:

Cut them in half vertically, toss in just the BARE MINIMUM of olive oil (otherwise they will be a yucky mess) and roast them in a large pan-- large enough that they don't touch each other--- at about 425 degrees until they just begin to turn slightly brown on the edges (close to an hour or so). Sprinkle a little salt. Prepare to taste something totally unlike any brussels sprouts your mouth has ever known. They become sweet. And heavening.

Beth Miriam said...

veralee, I agree with you 100%, I love to roast brussel sprouts. Then I roll them up into a sprouted grain tortilla with other vegetables and some hummus and pepperocini--yum!!

Unknown said...

I have a very good idea that I'll be receiving the cookbook for the holidays (yeah!) and you may say something about this there but...

In "converting" traditional recipes does silken tofu usually work in place of egg? Might that even work for cookies?

Myra Kornfeld, who wrote vulumptious vegan, my favorite cookbook- just came out with The Healthy Hedonist and she mentions at one point in that second book that coconut butter generally works in place of butter.

I could really use more hints like that.

Thanks a lot!

Alyse said...

Do you know of any other egg substitutes that would work in this recipe?

Jennifershmoo said...

>>In "converting" traditional recipes does silken tofu usually work in place of egg? Might that even work for cookies?

Yes, I find a few tablespoons of silken tofu work very well as an egg replacer in cookies and such. A tablespoon of ground flaxseeds whirred up with some water make a good egg substitute as well. Check out this page on vegan baking at the Post Punk Kitchen for more egg sub tips:

Matt and Bobbie said...

Andrea Baker-
yes, coconut oil is a good substitute for butter. It is solid and room temp and although it is technically a saturated fat, our bodies process it as unsaturated fat. The book Everyday Vegan by Jeanie Rose-Atchinson utilizes coconut oil in several recipes including a vegan butter recipe.

About the Myra Kornfeld's Healthy Hedonist--is this a cookbook, health book or both?

Crystal said...

Love the radishes - they are so cute!


urban vegan said...

I'd give it 5 hohos.

High Power Rocketry said...


Bruja said...

Being here...

DDawnC said...

Well, the jarred chestnuts are fine, but nothing to rave about. They are quite soft- softer than I expected, but interesting with the sprouts. Also, they aren't packed in any liquid- my mistake.

I went to the Richland Health Food store, saw the bin for Christmas Lima Beans... but it was empty! lol But I'll keep an eye out for them next time- thanks for the location tip.

S. said...

Beauuutiful blog.

Unknown said...

Hi Roxy-

Sorry it has taken me a bit to respond. And thank you Jennifer for the Post Punk Kitchen link!

The Healthy Hedonist is a cookbook for the "flexitarian" diet- people who (mostly) identify as vegetarians but eat a limited bit of organic eggs/dairy and a bit of fish/poultry. I admire that sort of diet- it seems very reasonable- but am a long-time steadfast vegan myself. The cookbook is more than worth its cover price for the butternut squash soup recipe alone (which is vegan) and so tasty that my son calls it "pudding."


Melissa Crowe said...

I refused to eat brussels sprouts my entire life until I found this method of preparation in a veg magazine: I cut the brussels sprouts in half and roast them along with cauliflower in a little coconut oil and sea salt. This is amazingly yummy, and organic coconut oil is part of a vegan detox diet on which I thrived for about a month recently, losing around ten pounds without trying (which is just a side benefit, of course)--surprisingly good for you.

Just got laptop lunchboxes for my entire family for Christmas--thanks for the inspiration!


shadow said...

Had the produce guy at a market in FL (while i was vacationing down there a few yrs ago) tell me there are two types of starfruit commonly seen in US produce sections. One is tart, one is sweet. When asked how to tell the difference, he said rule of thumb is to look at the skin between one of the point termini and the core termini, if it's flat, most likely the fruit is tart; if it bows outward, its most likely "sweet" and the more the outward bow, the sweeter the fruit. So far, (knock on wood) that simple trick has proven about 95% accurate for the carombolas that show up, up here in WV.

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