This weekend we finally picked up the much-anticipated external flash (the Nikon SB-600) for our D90 (thanks to Neil’s brother Alex). It was long past due. The stress of taking food pictures when you have a dark kitchen and it gets dark at before 5 was increasingly frustrating. We had tried different techniques and placement, but ended up always trying to cram everything into the weekends to get the right light leaving blogging feeling very prescribed.
Now it feels like the sky is the limit and with some more practice, we’ll have better consistency no matter what time of day it is. I took hundreds of photos this weekend, and no matter what time it is, I can get photos that with just a few tweaks are ready for upload, saving me hours at a time.
My first subject was this amazing Vegan Creamy Broccoli Salad that I whipped up for a trip to see family in St. Louis on Saturday. Faced with a two-hour car ride, I wanted a veggie side dish to that didn’t have mayo or dairy. I’d never considered using tofu to replace the mayo, and I’m so glad I did because it tastes so much better! While I still feel like a complete newb with tofu, Neil’s brother Alex has never cooked with it, so it was fun to share the recipe, some tips, and hopefully a new ingredient for him to try out.
4 cups of noodles, cooked (your choice on the type, we used spirals)
1 12.3 ounce box silken extra firm tofu, drained
2 tablespoons. olive oil
2 tablespoons. stone ground mustard
2 tablespoons. fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon. sugar, plus more to taste
¼ teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
4-5 cups chopped fresh broccoli florets
1 celery stalk, chopped
¼ cup finely chopped red onion
2-4 clementines or tangerines (or 2 oranges), peeled and sectioned
1 cup raw cashews
1. In a food processor or blender, blend tofu with olive oil until smooth. Add the mustard, lemon juice, sugar and salt, processing for 30 seconds to 1 minute longer, until creamy and well combined. Set aside.
2. In a large bowl, toss together the broccoli florets, chopped celery, red onion, clementines and raw cashews until well mixed. Toss the salad with the tofu dressing and refrigerate for 30 minutes before serving.
This is the perfect dish for any number of events where you a) don’t have a lot of time to prepare and b) want a dish that can work with a fair number of special diets, especially if change up the noodles to something other than whole-wheat.
Do you have a last-minute go-to potluck recipe? One you use specifically during the holidays?