Avocado toast is a food that I just can’t quit.
I know a lot of folks are feeling kind of “over it” lately. It’s achieved Kardashian-level celebrity status, right up there with kimchi, smoothie bowls and those Starbucks Pink Drinks. But to me, avocado toast isn’t just the latest trend. To me, avocado toast is pure comfort food. It’s the food that I eat when I’m stressed and rushed and struggling to find the time to prepare a “real meal”. And it’s the food that I eat when I just don’t feel like eating. Like this past week, when my heart felt heavy and my house seemed unbearably empty. Avocado toast was the only thing that actually tasted really good to me.
Today’s version includes one of my favorite curious little fruits: kumquats. They are in season right now, so keep your eyes peeled for these sweet-sour gems that look just like miniature oranges.
And speaking of peels, you can eat them. Yup. Not need to peel kumquats (thank goodness because that would be a laborious task!). In fact, the peel is actually the sweeter part of the fruit. It’s the center that packs a pucker-inducing punch!
Last year, I made a Spicy Kumquat and Whipped Ricotta Crostini. And a couple of weeks ago, I spotted these gorgeous Kumquat Honeycomb Tartines from Alanna at The Bojon Gourmet. So it’s been on my mind to create a new version of kumquats on toast.
To that end, I asked my Mom for a few kumquats for a recipe and, of course, she brought me an ENTIRE CASE. Not that I was particularly surprised by this. Because my Mom always goes above and beyond the call of duty (it’s one of her most endearing qualities). But a case of kumquats is A LOT to try and get through. So I’ve been making plenty of dishes with kumquats this week (I might just have to share another one soon!), as well as making pickles, marmalades and chutneys.
These quick-pickled kumquats are exactly as they are named: pickled kumquats that can be made very quickly. I start by slicing each kumquat into 3-4 slices. No need to discard the seeds, but I do remove and discard the tiny woody stem that is sometimes found on the end. Then I boil them briefly to soften the peel and take away some of the bitterness. Finally, I combine the kumquat slices with a easy rice vinegar brine and pop them in the refrigerator to chill. Within an hour, they are ready to consume!
If quick-pickles are known as “quickles”, then are quick kumquat pickles known as “kuickles”?
Because I have so many kumquats, I made myself a couple jars of these quick-pickled kumquats. But you can certainly scale the recipe down, if you prefer. The quick-pickled kumquats should last for a week, maybe more, in your refrigerator.
This Quick-Pickled Kumquat Avocado Toast is just one in which you can enjoy your “kuickles”. Try them on sandwiches, with grilled chicken or fish, or add them to a cheese platter. Or simply eat them straight out of the jar!
Sweet potatoes are my jam. Mashed, grilled and even for breakfast, I’ll take them anyway I can get them. They are a welcome addition to any meal. And as I’ve transitioned into more of a plant-focused diet this past year, sweet potatoes have become an even more integral part of my kitchen.
So it only made sense that I would combine sweet potatoes with two of my other favorite ingredients: crispy baked chickpeas (seriously, these things are like crack) and the seasons first asparagus spears.
Oh asparagus. Nothing screams Spring like asparagus. And right now, I am definitely screaming for Spring. Because we just came off of one of the coldest weekends we’ve had all Winter. And it’s freaking MARCH you guys! I definitely thought we were out of the woods (I even folded and put away my snow pants!), but apparently we’re not. Jack Frost has extended his stay a little while longer.
So I’m mixing hearty, belly filling baked sweet potatoes with tender greens. And smothering them with a creamy vegan dressing and some spicy roasted chickpeas. The seasons are colliding – inside my kitchen and out. I think that’s what March is all about.
The sweet potatoes can take up to an hour to bake, depending on their size. But it’s a completely hands off process. So while this might not be the quickest dinner to prepare, I’d still dare to categorize it as “easy”. I also think this would be delicious with some roasted broccolini in lieu of the asparagus, if you happen to have that on hand.
I’m sharing the recipe for these Stuffed Sweet Potatoes with Chickpeas, Asparagus and Arugula as part of our monthly round-up organized by Becky from Vintage Mixer. March can be a tricky month if you’re like me and live somewhere where you’re still stuck in a mix of seasons. So I hope you can find some cooking inspiration from Becky’s March Produce Guide, as well as from the recipes that some of my blogging friends have created (links below!) that highlight this month’s fruits and vegetables. And be sure to let us know ways in which you’re using March produce by using the hashtag #eatseasonal on social media!
Recipe inspired by How Sweet It Is
March Eat Seasonal Recipes
Creamy Vegan Kiwi Lime Avocado Pie by Letty’s Kitchen
Chana Aloo Gobi Masala: Chickpea, Potato, and Cauliflower Curry by Food for My Family
Spicy Lemon-Ginger Tonic Tea by Suitcase Foodist
Broccoli Rabe and Chicken Pizza with Basil Cream Sauce by Vintage Mixer
Hot Chili Blistered Asparagus with Sriracha Aioli by Kitchen Confidante
Glazed Meyer Lemon Bundt Cake with Candied Lemons by Simple Bites
Frozen Chocolate-Dipped Kiwi with Sea Salt by Project Domestication
Tempura Cauliflower with Spiced Yogurt Dipping Sauce by Completely Delicious
Easy Lemon Thyme Roasted Artichokes by Flavor the Moments
Healthy Shamrock Shake by Joy Food Sunshine
Curry Roasted Cauliflower by Healthy Seasonal Recipes
Roasted Cauliflower Pasta with Lemon Chimichurri by She Likes Food
Thai Curry Cauliflower Soup by Mountain Mama Cooks