Thursday, March 29, 2012

Hoppy Easter, and Happy Passover! A holiday-filled new menu for delivery Tuesday, 4/3

Happy Thursday, one and all!

This coming week, we have a lot of ground to cover. Easter and Passover are usually pretty close together, but they fall on the exact same week this year! Palm Sunday falls on April Fool's Day this weekend, and Easter is the following week! Passover begins at sunset on Friday evening and continues for one week.

In honor of both these holidays, among the most important in their respective calendars, I've got a whole host of celebratory dishes! Don't miss the bakery section, where there are some extra-special items waiting for you.

Thanks so much, and I look forward to cooking for you soon!

Much love,
Chef Mary



Roasted Beet Soup! Fresh and springy and such an amazing shade of fuchsia. $8


Mock Chopped Liver! Okay, it sounds crazy, but this is actually a traditional (and super delicious) dish! Made with walnuts and mushrooms, and served with crunchy veggies to dip. $12

Sweet Potato Kugel! At once savory and sweet, and entirely delicious! Served with apple-walnut charoset. $11

Millet-veggie cakes. The classic returns! Warm them up and enjoy with fresh lemon-parsley-walnut pesto, served on the side. $11

Bunny Bento! This rendition will feature bunny-shaped brown rice onigiri (rice balls) filled with a carrot and almond filling, accompanied by colorful, seasonal fruits and veggies. $11


Chocolate Easter Eggs with a deliciously vegan cashew filling that will remind you of smooth, creamy cheesecake. Yum! $8

Chocolate Filled Chocolate Bunnies! Easter isn't complete without some chocolate rabbits. Penelope B. Bunny helped me choose the chocolate molds! $8

Hot Cross Buns! Hot Cross Buns! The classic little yeasted roll for Palm Sunday and Easter. $10 half dozen, $18 dozen


As always, the vast majority of my ingredients are organic and/or local. I use vegan ingredients, free of soy, peanut, wheat, and gluten. I DO use nuts and seeds. Please let me know if you have any food allergies or sensitivities!

It helps me and the Earth if you return containers and ice packs after you are finished with them.

Thank you so much! I look forward to seeing you all soon!


P.S. For the ingredient-sensitive among you, the mock chopped liver, the kugel, the bento, and all the bakery items are free of garlic. Everything this week happens to be fairly low on the heat spectrum. There are cashews in the soup, the chocolate eggs, and the hot cross buns. There are almonds and sesame in the bento, and walnuts in the kugel, the charoset, the pesto for the millet cakes, and the mock chopped liver. Please do double-check with me about any sensitivities, though!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Spring has sprung! Crafty new menu for Tuesday, 3/27

Spring has sprung! And oh my, is it ever warm!

I was walking around outside and I saw so many flowers blooming on trees, in bushes, and in gardens. I couldn't believe how many flowers were already in full bloom in March - and not just crocuses and daffodils, but hyacinth, forsythia, and I could swear I saw a dogwood in bloom too!

I don't know what it means for the growing season ahead of us, and I don't know what changes are in store for us longer term. But I do highly recommend getting outside, walking around in your neighborhood, and seeing what's blooming near you!

Here's a delicious new menu for the springy turn the weather has taken! Enjoy!

Please place orders by Sunday night for delivery on Tuesday, March 27.

Thanks so much!

Much love,
Chef Mary



Southwestern Black Bean Soup! Yum! $7


Hedgehog Potatoes with a generous side of Spanish Romesco Sauce! No hedgehogs are harmed in the making of this dish; the potatoes are just cut and roasted in such a way that they resemble hedgehogs. Romesco sauce is made from tomatoes, roasted red peppers, smoky paprika, almonds, and homemade gluten free herbed breadcrumbs. $11

Curried Cauliflower with pepitas and raisins, over brown basmati rice. So yummy! Contains a touch of raw local honey. $11

Roasted Beet and Sunchoke Salad, with Cilantro, red onion, and red quinoa. $12

Thai Forbidden Black Rice Salad with colorful peppers, cashews, and a light sesame vinaigrette over greens $11


Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins $10 half dozen $18 dozen

Vanilla Tapioca Pudding! Made with almond milk and a swirl of cashew creme, and topped with a dusting of nutmeg. A good sized portion $8


Whenever possible, ingredients are organic and/or local. If you have a question about a dish or an ingredient, please ask!

All dishes are vegan, so they are naturally free of common allergens fish, shellfish, dairy, and egg. I specify any dish that contains honey. I do not use soy, peanuts, wheat, or other gluten containing grains. I DO use tree nuts and seeds, and naturally gluten free whole grains. If you have any kind of allergy or sensitivity, please let me know!

It helps me and Mother Earth if you return the containers when you are finished with them.

Thank you so much!

Much love,
Chef Mary

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Events and Special Requests!

Did you know that in addition to delivering awesome food from my menu on Tuesdays, I also take special requests? I do!

If you need help with an event, or if you would like a special treat for yourself or a loved one, email me and we can set something up! In the Rather Crafty kitchen, everything is gluten free, vegan, and super awesome. As you know, I am super careful about food allergies and special diets, but most of my clients have no special dietary requirements at all and just love delicious food!

I am always happy to deliver; but I can also come to your home and cook and bake for you, with you, or even with your kids! I can do any level of vegetarian cooking and even work with gluten in your home, so there's a lot more flexibility that way.

I also work for a larger company that does personal chef and catering work. At Cuisine en Locale, everything is 100% local and amazing! I work on the vegevore end of things, but we have some amazing omnivorous chefs on our team too! I know some of you out there in Crafty Land love my cooking but don't necessarily follow a vegan lifestyle all the time. We have plenty of options for you too! My work with CeL is not gluten free though, so it's not for the most sensitive of bellies.

At CeL we cater amazing parties, large and small. We also deliver prepared food shares. Kind of like a farm share, but with the food already cooked and ready to enjoy! The omnivores deliver their shares on Tuesdays, and we vegevores deliver ours on Thursdays.

You can email me with any questions or requests at

You can check out the CeL blog at . Sometimes you'll find weekly menus there, so you can get an idea of our style.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Happy St. Paddy's Day, everyone!

Today we celebrate all things green! But before you go out and drink a beer with food coloring in it, and then regret it in the morning, here's a healthy alternative! (Or if you are out enjoying a pint this evening, this will be a great refresher in the morning!)

I love to drink green smoothies! They're the best way to start the day with energy and clarity. I admit, some days I fall off the wagon and have a different breakfast like gluten free oatmeal topped with fruit and nuts, but I really do feel my best when I start with a smoothie!

Some smoothies you get at stores or those smoothie shops are made from sugar, dairy, and maybe a little fruit to pretend it's healthy. They let you down with an unpleasant sugar crash. No fun! Others might be made with healthy ingredients but they've been pasteurized and bottled and then sat on a shelf for weeks or longer. The fruits and veggies lose a lot of vitamins and enzymes that way. You're best off either making your own or going to a proper juice bar for a real one!

Now, this is more a method than a recipe, because you can customize it to your own tastebuds, but there are a few starter formulas at the bottom.

Here's what you will need:

A blender. You don't need a VitaMix to make a good smoothie, though it does help! You can make a perfectly lovely smoothie in a blender from a department store.


Some fresh or freshly frozen fruit: banana, apple, pear, berries, citrus, cucumber, papaya, pineapple, whatever you like! Peel if appropriate, and chop into bite sized pieces.
Some washed and dried raw green, leafy veggies: spinach is nice and mild, so it's a great first green in a smoothie. I also love kale, collards, sprouts, romaine, celery, or chard. Cut into bite sized pieces so they don't get stuck in the blender.
Some filtered water or freshly made almond or cashew milk.
Optional: Hemp seeds, chia seeds, brazil nuts, cashews, fresh ginger, spirulina powder, probiotic powder, rice or hemp protein powder.

Are you ready?

If you're using chia, soak it in the filtered water at least 10 minutes ahead of time to hydrate it. If you're using brazil nuts or cashews, it helps to soak them overnight then rinse and drain, but you don't have to.

If you're using nuts or seeds, put them in the blender and give them a little advance chopping with a tiny bit of water. Put the fruit in the blender with a little water. If you're using fresh ginger, chop or grate and add it now. Blend until it's not too chunky. Add a couple handfuls of greens. Add more water if necessary, and blend away! If you're using powders, add them now and give it one last blend, and ENJOY!

Great combinations:

1 - 2 bananas
1 orange
2 - 3 cups of spinach
If you're feeling decadent, some cashews and a tiny splash of vanilla make it taste a lot like an orange Creamsicle! Freeze the banana first or add a handful of ice while blending to make it ice-creamier.

1 apple
a knob of ginger
1 cup cranberries
4 stalks of celery

1 ripe pear
1 cup blueberries or blackberries
2 or 3 cups kale

Make up your own combinations!

You'll need a fruit with some pectin or starchiness to it, to get the smoothest texture. Bananas are the classic choice but papaya, pear, and some berries have so much body and/or pectin they work great too! If you are feeling decadent, an avocado is a fantastically rich and creamy addition. You'll also want to have something with vitamin C in it in order to best absorb the iron present in most of the greens. Fortunately, most of the greens and most fruits are already rich in vitamin C! Don't use dairy milk. It inhibits your absorption of the iron.

Enjoy you healthy green drinks!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Happy end of the week, everyone!

Oh my goodness, the calendar is chock full of important dates! Yesterday was the Ides of March. You may remember that this is the day on which Julius Caesar was assassinated. In Shakespeare's play, a seer warned Caesar to "Beware the Ides of March." But what on Earth is an ides? It's just a day in the ancient Roman calendar close to the middle of the month. Some months it falls on the 15th, and others it's the 13th. In the case of the Ides of March, it was a festival dedicated to the god Mars, on the 15th day of the month named for him. Now you know!

The day before, I almost missed a really important holiday: Pi Day! How could I miss Pi Day? The date 3/14 bears a close resemblance to the first three digits of pi, 3.14 In honor of Pi Day, this menu will feature both Tamale Pie and the amazing gluten free, vegan Pecan Pie that bowled everyone over last time!

Finally, the first day of spring is upon us! In spring, everything seems to wake up. The first few springy ingredients are becoming available. We can begin to turn to more salads and lighter, refreshing foods. Though we never really had a whole lot of winter, I think many of us are still ready for spring!

I hope you all enjoy this beautiful menu as much as I plan to!

Please order by midnight, Sunday night for delivery on Tuesday, 3/20. (It's okay to order later than that, of course, but sometimes the more popular items start to sell out!)

Thank you so much!

Much love,
Chef Mary


Chunky Buckwheat Vegetable Soup. Yum! $8


Colcannon: One last St. Patrick's Day dish that we couldn't fit into last week's menu! Mashed potatoes are even more delicious when mixed with fresh greens and scallions. Served with roasted butternut squash and topped with toasty squash seeds! $11

Tamale Pie! Delicious red bean chili, with corn bread baked on top. $11

A brand new take on our favorite Carrot Nori Rolls, with a Caesar salad flare! A departure from the usual amazing carrot ginger wraps, and different from previous Caesar wraps too. They'll be bite sized and easy to eat like the usual carrot rolls, but with a more Caesary flavor profile and a side of my famous raw vegan cashew Caesar dressing for dipping. They are going to be AMAZING and I can hardly wait! $11

Kabocha Pumpkin Lasagna with creamy Roasted Red Pepper Sauce and Greens du Jour. Made with gluten free brown rice pasta, of course! $12


Everyone's favorite: Banana Buckwheat Chocolate Chip Muffins $10 half dozen, $18 dozen

Pecan Pie! Yum! With a dollop of Cashew Creme on the side. $8


As always, everything is delicious, vegan, made from real ingredients, and good for you. I do not use soy, peanut, wheat, or any gluten ingredients. I do use certified organic and/or local nuts, seeds, whole grains, fruits, and veggies. If you are allergic or sensitive to anything, please let me know!

I always appreciate it when you bring back the reusable containers and jars. It helps reduce our consumption of plastic and glass (and it helps keep prices reasonable!)

Have a beautiful day!


Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Happy Pi Day!!!!!

Happy Pi Day everyone!

It's 3/14 today, which looks a lot like 3.14, the first three digits of the number pi! I'm sure you remember beautifully irrational pi from geometry class!

In my focus on St. Patrick's Day, I completely forgot that it was Pi Day this week too!

So here is a picture of the awesome pecan pie from last time.

You know you want some! And that picture was taken before I even popped it in the oven!

Maybe I'll consider making it again soon. Maybe I'll even share!



Chef Mary

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Happy St. Patrick's Day! A fantastic new menu for delivery Tuesday 3/13

Hello hello!

Did you realize that Saint Patrick's Day is coming up very soon? Our next delivery is on Tuesday, March 13 which is the closest Tuesday to St. Paddy's Day without going right past and missing it. So this is the week for cabbage and potatoes and soda bread! Don't miss out!

Erin Go Bragh!

Much love,
Chef Mary



Leek and Potato Soup! $8


Gluten free beer braised cabbage with caraway. Served with my famous parsley potatoes and appley beans! $12

Farmer's Market Veggie Pot Pie! Everyone loves pot pie! This might be the last week of chilly pot pie weather, so don't miss it! $11

Cheezy Spinach Dip with crunchy veggies on the side. How does the dip get so creamy? Cashews and veggies, of course! $10

Boston Baked Beans! Our official state bean, served with Veg du Jour and a Pumpkin & Pepita Corn Muffin. $11


Irish Soda Bread $8 for a nice personal sized loaf

Corn muffins with Pumpkin and Pepitas! $10 half dozen, $18 dozen


Please place orders by midnight, Sunday night for delivery on Tuesday, March 13. And don't forget to let me know if you have any allergies or sensitivities! As always, everything is vegan, and free of gluten, soy, and peanut.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Lots of Love, and Beware the Ides of March!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Happy March! A springlike new menu for delivery Tuesday, 3/6

Happy March, everyone!

They say that March comes in like a lion, and goes out like a lamb. Today's weather supports that old saying! It's a chilly, grey, damp kind of day as I write this.

That lion inspired this week's menu! This week, we will celebrate flavors with assertive personalities to chase away the chill! As a bonus, Earnest's birthday is coming up soon, so I thought I'd throw in a few of his favorites for good measure.

Please order by Sunday night for delivery on Tuesday afternoon, March 6.

Thank you, and enjoy!

Much love,
Chef Mary



Curried winter squash soup. Just the thing for a blustery day! $8


Poutine! This Canadian comfort food gets a delicious vegan update. Roasted potato and sweet potato wedges, served with an herbed mushroom gravy and cashew mozzarella. The gravy and "cheese" will be packed in separate containers of course, so you can heat them up and enjoy them without a hint of sogginess! $11

Burritos! Handmade gluten free flour tortillas, stuffed with sweet potatoes, herbed rice, and vegan refried beans. Served with a side of locally made Alex's Ugly Sauce. (Note: the Ugly Sauce contains honey. Read all about it here! $11

Quinoa Salad with Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette, with winter kohlrabi and other farmer's market treasures. Served with Earnest's favorite Maple Cayenne Walnuts. Yum! $12

Dirty Rice: Brown basmati rice mixed with lots of colorful veggies, spices, and homemade rice-oat crumbles. Stuffed into a roasted acorn squash half. $12


The best Apple Crisp you've ever had! The topping is made with sliced almonds and certified gluten free oats. The apples are local and delicious. Served with Maple Cinnamon Cashew Creme on the side. $8

Mexican Hot Chocolate Muffins! Chocolate chips, cinnamon, and the lightest kiss of spicy chilis make these muffins irresistible! $10 half dozen, $18 dozen


Whenever possible, ingredients are organic and/or local. If you have a question about a dish or an ingredient, please ask!

All dishes are made from scratch and are vegan, so they are naturally free of common allergens fish, shellfish, dairy, and egg. I specify any dish that contains honey. I do not use soy, peanuts, wheat, or other gluten containing grains. I DO use tree nuts and seeds, and naturally gluten free whole grains. I am extremely careful about cross-contamination of potentially allergenic ingredients! If you have any kind of allergy or sensitivity, please let me know!

It helps me and Mother Earth if you return the containers when you are finished with them.

Thank you so much!

Much love,
Chef Mary