Find your inner (GREEN) Goddess

This is for all my fellow warrior women who have made it this far during the pandemic. Whether you’re a mother, a daughter, a caregiver, granddaughter, an essential worker, sister, wife, partner….you name it….you’re all Goddesses to me. So this one’s for you! 🙏🏻🌱🙏🏽

This bright, flavorful dressing can be used in so many ways. Dress your favorite salad, top your roasted vegetables, use on a baked potato, pasta salad, as a dip for crudités. Possibilities are endless. (You may even be tempted to just eat with a spoon!)


1 Cup of milk of your choice (oat has the most neutral flavor – my current fave is especially the plain, unsweetened extra creamy!)

1 packed cup washed combo of cilantro, basil and dill

4 T rice vinegar

2 T lemon juice

4 cloves of roasted garlic (I simply wrap the cloves in tinfoil and bake at 400 for 30 minutes and then squeeze the garlic out!) note: hot date? Garlic totally optional 😜

1/5 of a block of firm tofu

1/2 C soaked cashews (soaked for at least 3 hours)

Salt and pepper to taste

Purée all ingredients and adjust seasoning to taste! Stores up to one week in fridge.

Allergy notes:

the cashews can be substituted with a little extra tofu or half a ripe avocado

Roll into Spring 💐

As a Pure Barre and Pilates teacher I’ve always loved doing roll ups (teasers). I mean, who doesn’t love a great core workout?!

But these raw zucchini and cashew cream roll ups will appeal to all and they are super easy to make! They make a great snack, side dish or appetizer. Trust me, your friends will be wowed if you show up with a tray of these (once you are vaccinated of course!).

I originally had these at what was Andy’s Pure Food in Rye, NY. Years ago it was acquired by a local nutritionist Moshira Soliman and turned into the infinitely better Pureganic Cafe – but they no longer offer these zucchini dream bites. (But trust me- the rest of her food is amazing and all vegan and gluten free. She also offers incredible juice cleanses and food plans and lots of great takeout! In other words- run don’t walk!) So I decided to recreate them myself and they turned out perfectly!

I borrowed the cashew cream sauce from The Blossom Cookbook (another one of my favorite vegan restaurants – I’m partial to Blossom on Columbus I added my own little touches and made it a little thicker so that the cream would hold up when the zucchini noodles were rolled.

I kept these roll ups simple, filling with the cashew cream and sweet pea shoots, but the possibilities are endless: matchstick carrots, jicama, radishes, avocado slices. If you don’t want to use cashew cream or have a nut allergy, there are many great soft vegan cheese spreads that would also be delicious fillers. Brands to look for: Miyoko, Treeline, Kite Hill.

The Cashew Cream

Please note the cashews must be soaked for a minimum of 3 hours (or up to overnight)

1 Cup raw, unsalted cashews

1-2 T nutritional yeast flakes

1-2 T rice vinegar or lemon juice

Water to desired consistency

Salt and pepper to taste

Place the cashews in a bowl and completely cover with water, soak at lest 3 hours or up to 12.

Drain cashews and add to blender or food processor. Add nutritional yeast flakes, rice vinegar and slowly add water as you combine. You want the cream to stay thick enough to hold up when spread on the zucchini noodles. Add salt and pepper to taste. Place in bowl and refrigerate to get firm.

The Rolls

1 to 2 large green zucchinis

Pea shoots

To make the zucchini noodles all you need is a knife and a vegetable peeler, no fancy equipment!

Cut the zucchini lengthwise and lay flat. Start at the top of the zucchini with the vegetable peeler and slice down until you have a long, thin “noodle.”

Lay the noodles flat and spoon the cashew cream across. Add the sprouts (if they’re long I halve or cut them in 1/3s. You want them to slightly hang over but also be easy to eat!). Roll! These are ready to eat right away but do benefit from being refrigerated.

Enjoy. Great appetizer for the spring holidays! And never forget you can always play around making noodles with other vegetables and adding different fillings. Stay safe, wear a mask and if you’re eligible and can, get the vaccine! XO Hollis

Tempeh Quinoa Veggie Burgers

A little over 12 years ago I took a cooking class at the Institute of Culinary Education called Tofu on the Table with chef Richard Ruben. Not all of the recipes were vegan but they all involved tofu of some kind. It was a memorable day…I learned some great recipes, ate some great food….had a day away from my two very tiny children….and also found out I was pregnant with my third! (After cutting myself, stumbling and ultimately fainting during the class Richard said, Hollis, I think you’re pregnant! I was like no way! I have a 2 year old and an 11 month old at home! Hahahaha…I was pregnant. To be clear it was planned but I didn’t expect it to take one try!!!) But the absolute favorite recipe I took away was the vegetable tempeh quinoa burgers. I am not in general a tempeh fan, but ground up in these burgers they make a wonderful consistency. They’re topped with a sensational miso tahini dressing that once you make, you will end up using in so many other dishes. People have asked for the recipe for years but I cook from the heart and never measure. Finally decided it’s time to share so today I measured every step! Enjoy!



1 package tempeh (your choice any kind works)

One of my faves…

1 cup cooked quinoa

1/2 yellow zucchini

1/2 green zucchini

1 small onion

1/4 C chopped cilantro (note, for cilantro haters, basil or parsley can be swapped out!)

1-1/4 C garbanzo bean flour


1/2 C rice vinegar

1/3 C mellow white miso

This is my go to miso for everything miso!

1/4 C tahini

2 lemons, juiced

1/2-1 t crushed garlic

1-1/2 C warm water

pepper and cayenne to taste



For the burgers, in a food processor with the grating attachment, add the vegetables and the tempeh and grate. Place this mixture into a large mixing bowling and add the cooked quinoa and cilantro. Mix everything together and then add the flour to thoroughly combine and bind the “dough.” (Easiest to do with your hands!) Spray a tinfoil lined baking sheet with the oil of your choice and press balls of the dough down until they make very thin, round burgers.


Bake at 400 for 15 minutes or until done, flipping halfway through. These burgers also come out great on the grill BUT also on sprayed tinfoil as they will stick to your grill and be a nightmare to clean!

For the dressing combine everything in blender adding more or less water to taste!


I like to serve these burgers warm on a bed of baby spinach or arugula with a ramekin of dressing on the side to drizzle and dip. Of course they can be served on the bread or bun of your choice or just alone! Top with sliced onion, tomato or avocado. Perfect summer dinner! (Pictured with truffle sea salt seasoned corn on the cob and an Asian slaw)




Guilt Free Spicy Thai “pasta”-yum!

I don’t eat pasta. Don’t hate. I just don’t think it’s all that and I don’t think it’s worth the calories. Quite frankly one serving of pasta for 200 calories doesn’t even fill me up. Give me a 150 calorie dense baked potato any day over pasta (shhh don’t tell my trainer!).

But my zucchini pasta? Bring it on! After spending way too much money buying pre-spiralized packages of yellow and green zucchini at my local vegetable market, I finally invested in my own spiraling machine. I was skeptical, but it works like a charm and has several other blade options for slicing. There are many options on the market, I opted for  this mid priced one and as I said it’s fabulous. And also very easy to clean. #bonusIMG_1064

My kids all love these noodles, sautéed and topped with parmesan or sauce.  (I buy Go Veggie vegan parmesan for myself and my vegan son). But recently I had a craving for some spicy thai curry and thought up this “noodle” recipe. It came out tasting exactly like I imagined and was full of flavor and free of guilt!

The “sauce”

I combined firm tofu, red curry paste, chopped cilantro, crushed chili flakes and coconut milk in my food processor. Instead of using traditional coconut milk for cooking which is laden with calories and fat I use my regular drinking coconut milk-same flavor! Califia Farms has a half almond-half toasted coconut milk that I adore. It’s unsweetened and has no additives. (Their milk is the only brand we drink-the almond milk has 2 ingredients-almonds and water-as it should be.) Blend and salt to taste. Place aside.IMG_1065

Saute the zucchini noodles separately and place in a bowl. Then sauté the veggies you want to top it with-I used mixed greens, edamame, brussel sprouts, broccoli and red cabbage . IMG_1068

Place the sautéed veggies on top of your noodles, add your spicy sauce, some extra chopped cilantro and voila! Dinner (lunch?) is served. IMG_1069


Extra protein? A little baked tofu goes a long way.IMG_1070

p.s. Your “noodles” can be a variety of veggies! Carrots, beets, celery root, daikon. Experiment!


Tofu is a four letter word: NOT

This scary plant based protein made easy!

Trust me. I know. I’ve been there. I went vegetarian at age 8 and didn’t start eating tofu well into my 20s. It sounds scary. It carries a stigma. And when you open a container of tofu…well it can be mushy and flavorless (and it’s white? What food is that white?!). But I promise, the two recipes I am going to share are absolutely delicious. All 3 of my children love and there are very few foods they all agree on.

You know Bethenny Frankel? Skinny Bitch? I mean…girl…? Before the Real Housewives and all of that, she was the chef at this great midtown lunch place called Blanche’s Organic where I would go pretty much every day. She made the most amazing lemon baked tofu that opened my eyes and my taste buds right up.  This tofu was firm! It had flavor! My two favorite ways to prepare tofu now replicate the firmness of that tofu. So I can hate on her margaritas and her millions, but yeah, she made some damn good tofu. Thanks Bethenny!

My marinated baked tofu cubes are now made weekly and sit in the fridge perfect as a snack for some quick easy protein or easy to add to a plate of veggies for a fast, healthy meal. (Yes I am here to show you that having no time is not a valid excuse any more…#sorrynotsorry!)

I use Nasoya Lite Extra Firm tofu. It has only 45 calories per serving and 8 grams of protein. But any brand of firm or extra firm tofu works.

(stir fry or steam some veggies, add handful of tofu and perhaps some quinoa-voila!)

Lemon Baked Tofu

2 lemons, juiced

1/4 C rice vinegar

1/2 t crushed garlic

black pepper

Tamari Ginger Tofu

1/2 C Tamari soy sauce (I use San-J organic gluten free tamari)

1/2 C rice vinegar

1/2 t crushed garlic

1/2 t crushed ginger

Both recipes are prepared the same way-see? Easy peasy!

Open one or two packages of extra firm or firm tofu, drain.  Blot the tofu with paper towels (or be green! use a dish towel!) until the excess water is absorbed. Cube into bite size pieces. In a bowl combine all the ingredients and add the cubed tofu, carefully using a spatula to make sure all the cubes get into the liquid (tofu breaks pretty easily). Let the tofu marinate 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. The longer the better but 20 minutes is sufficient to get the flavor. On a tray covered in tinfoil and sprayed with non stick olive oil, arrange the tofu in a single layer. Bake at 400 degrees for 45 minutes to an hour.

Recently I have been making the tofu in my Breville Smartoven convection toaster because it cooks food in less time. Seriously, this toaster has changed my life. It roasts veggies in literally half the time as my regular oven. The tofu can easily be done in 40 minutes (and must be baked at a lower temp of 380). It has a pizza setting for fresh or frozen (my kids eat a lot of pizza, hey it’s better than hot dogs!). If you’re looking for a new kitchen appliance I cannot say enough. I haven’t turned my oven on in a long time.  See it here!


Baby it’s cold outside winter chili!

My favorite winter recipe…

I know my carnivore friends tell me they know they are low on iron when they suddenly crave a burger or a steak. After 37 years of being meat free, my body craves my homemade chili! Packed full of antioxidants and protein, iron and fiber….it’s delicious and  healthy. I don’t stick to the exact same recipe every time, which is a great way to use up extra veggies before they go bad.  I usually make this at least once a month-and yesterday was one of those days. While my kids had heart shaped pancakes for breakfast today, I had a small mug of chili! When it’s 0 degrees outside, anything goes!

I used to stick with staples of carrots and some greens, but recently I’ve become obsessed with parsnips-peeled, sliced and roasted. They add such a nice warm winter flavor and pair nicely when you add white Cannellini beans to the chili! And I always add roasted and cubed Kabocha squash. If you’ve never had Kabocha (also known as Japanese pumpkin), trust me on this. Not only is it a super food packing tons of Vitamins A and C, but it has HALF the carbs of a butternut squash (and 20 fewer calories) with a much richer flavor and denser flesh. It makes a terrific replacement when making “butternut squash” soup and it is very sweet and can literally be eaten just roasted. I even eat the skin (hey, more fiber!). And…some people say it’s an aphrodisiac! Happy Valentine’s Day! Check it out here!


Muir Glen fire roasted crushed tomatoes

Knudsen organic low sodium veggie juice

celery sliced

1 large onion diced

Kabocha squash, roasted and cubed

3 cans of Eden organic beans: kidney, black, cannellini, pinto…you choose! (Yesterday I did kidney, cannellini and black beans.)


chili seasoning





parsnips, peeled and sliced


baby spinach


Other veggies I have used:

Food is very personal so of course use what you love! In the past I have used zucchini, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower. Most people use red peppers, I’m just not a pepper fan, but if you are they are absolutely perfect in this recipe. And for a nice texture, shredded carrots are perfect.

Prior to starting, halve Kabocha squash and remove the seeds. Roast at 375 for about 45 minutes, until tender (if you overcook it, the skin will automatically fall off. No biggie, just use the squash!). Also peel and slice the parsnips. Same cooking temp, less time. Start checking at 25 minutes. Place the cooked veggies to the side.

In a large pot (I love my Le Creuset) add 1-2 T olive oil, the chopped celery and diced onions. Saute 5-7 minutes until onions are translucent. Add the crushed tomatoes and beans (I do not drain them). Add chili, cayenne and cumin to taste. Add a dash of cinnamon (again trust me on this!). Stir well and add the whole bottle of veggie juice. Using the veggie juice as the base adds so many more vitamins to this chili! (I keep an extra bottle on hand to water the chili down throughout the week as it tends to thicken up)

Add the squash and parsnip and stir well. Add baby spinach and kale…It cooks down so I usually add the whole bag of baby spinach and maybe half of the kale or a small bunch.

Bring to a boil, then simmer for 40 minutes. add salt to taste and add chopped cilantro before serving.

This can be served with rice, quinoa or on it’s own. It really doesn’t need a side dish as it is packed with vegetables. Want to spice it up? Shredded Daiya cheese on top and Vegan Gourmet sour cream are both delicious additions! (I try to eat a whole food plant based diet with limited processed foods but sometimes you’ve got to splurge.)