Skirt Steak Fajitas + The Best Marinade Ever

I love skirt steak.  It's a great and inexpensive cut of meat from the plate section, behind the cow's front legs.  Lots of flavor but not the most tender cut.  Marinating a skirt steak before cooking it will add even more flavor and help tenderize it.  

Serves 4 with leftovers.  Serves 8 if you're serving other sides or starters.  

Skirt Steak Fajitas + Cumin Soy Lime Marinade

for the marinade:

juice of 1 lime

1/4 cup soy sauce

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon worcestershire sauce

2 cloves garlic, grated

1 1/2 tablespoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon chile powder

for the fajitas:

2 lbs skirt steak

grapeseed oil, as needed

3 bell peppers, red, green, orange or yellow, stemmed, seeded, sliced

1 large yellow onion, sliced

12-16 tortillas, corn or flour

s + p

Stir together lime juicem soy, olive oil, worcestershire sauce, garlic, cumin and chile powder.  Cut each skirt steak to into 2 or 3 pieces so they will fit on grill, skillet or grill pan, if needed.  Place marinade in bowl or large zip lock bag, add steak, coat in marinade.  Let marinate in the fridge for 1 hour.  

When done, remove steak from marinade, discard marinade and blot steak with towel.  Heat a grill, skillet or grill pan over medium high heat.  Oil grates with grapeseed oil to lubricate if necessary to prevent sticking.  Once hot, place steak on grill.  Let once grill marks form, (about 30 seconds) give it a quarter turn.  Cook about 1 minute, flip, do the same, cooking to desired level of doneness.  Set steak aside to rest before slicing.  

While steak is resting, cook the onions and peppers.  If cooking on the stove, add a splash of oil to the skillet or grill pan still over medium high heat.  If cooking on a grill, place oiled skillet or grill basket directly on the grill rack and heat.  Once hot, add onions and peppers, cook, stirring frequently to avoid burning.  Cook until onions are soft.  

Throw tortillas in the hot pan or on the grill for 15 seconds, it will warm them and improve the flavor.  

Serve with sour cream, salsa, lettuce, fresh herbs, rice and beans, hot sauce, whatever you like.  

 

Salad + Plums + Honey Cumin Vinaigrette

I don't eat enough salad.  I try, but I just don't.  So, I've been trying to make ones at home full of things I like to eat to entice myself to eat more greens.  

This, seasonal late summer/early fall salad, is one of them.  Fresh, sweet stone fruit and roasted carrots.  The honey cumin vinaigrette ties everything together.  

Serves 2.

Salad with Plums + Honey Cumin Vinaigrette

For the salad:

3 carrots, peeled, chopped

splash olive oil

s + p

1 plum, pitted, sliced

1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced

3 - 4 cups baby greens mix

For the vinaigrette:

1/2 teaspoon whole cumin seeds

1 teaspoon honey

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

squeeze lemon juice, to taste

s + p

Heat oven to 400 degrees.  Toss chopped carrots in olive oil, season with salt and pepper.  Spread out on pan and roast in oven about 20 minutes, tossing once if desired.  Set aside.

Make vinaigrette by first toasting cumin seeds.  Place in a pan over medium high heat, shaking pan frequently, until fragrant.  Grind toasted seeds in a spice or coffee grinder to a fine powder. 

In a small bowl, whisk ground cumin seeds, honey and vinegar together.  Whisk in oil.  Season with lemon juice and salt until balanced and doesn't taste overpoweringly of olive oil.  

Toss greens, carrots, plums and red onion slices with vinaigrette.  Serve immediately.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

Green Beans with Olives + Almonds

I have a go to method for making green bean sides:  blanche, shock, dry and saute in olive oil with garlic and red pepper flakes.  Season with s + p.  It's simple and goes with a lot of main courses.  

I decided to shake things up a bit and try something new.  This follows the same method but with new, more unusual ingredients.  Enjoy!

Castelvetrano olives are sicilian olives with a beautiful green color, mildly brined, buttery flavor.  I have had a hard time finding them pitted, so you'll probably have to remove the pits yourself.  The flesh on these likes to hold onto the pit so you're best bet is to just slice it off on each side.  

Serves 2-3.

Green Beans with Olives + Almonds

3/4 lb green beans, trimmed

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 1/2 teaspoons sherry vinegar

10 castelvetrano olives, pits removed

2 tablespoons sliced almonds

s + p

Boil a pot of water, add a pinch of salt to season.  Add green beans, blanch about 60 to 90 seconds, until crisp tender.  Transfer green beans to ice bath to shock.  Once cold, dry green beans.  

Heat a 10" pan over medium heat.  Once hot, add olive oil, when oil is hot, add beans.  Cook until hot, stirring and moving beans around pan.  Remove from heat and toss with sherry vinegar.  Set aside. Salt lightly and pepper.  

Return pan to medium heat, adding a small amount of oil if needed.  Add almonds and olives, cook, stirring until warm, about 2 minutes.  Toss with green beans.  

 

 

Plum + Flax Fruit Roll ups

Once i've made a batch, I carry these and roasted nuts with me everywhere as an emergency snack.  

It's best if your plums are ripe.  The riper the fruit, the sweeter the fruit roll up will be.  Ginger is optional, it adds a little zip and spiciness.   (if you're curious, the lighter colored pieces in the photo were not cooked first and the darker ones were, following the posted instructions.  Just a little recipe test.)

Makes 1 18 x 13 inch half sheet pan.  

Plum + Flax Fruit Rollups

1 teaspoon whole flax seeds

6 ripe plums. pits removed, coarsely chopped

1 teaspoon grated ginger (optional)

Preheat oven to 175 degrees.    Prepare a 18" x 13" sheet pan with a silpat or parchment paper.  If using the parchment paper, cut it so it fits the base of the pan without over hang.  

Grind flax seeds in spice or coffee grinder.  Set aside. 

Place chopped plums in pot, over medium-low heat.  Cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes or until plums begin to break down and become soft.  Transfer to a blender with ground flax seeds and ginger.  Blend until very smooth. 

Pour puree onto prepared pan.  Smear it out to the edge of the parchment or silpat with a flat sided spatula to even thickness.  (The evenness is important so it all cooks right so take your time with this part.)  

Transfer to oven and bake 4 to 5 hours until dry to the touch and not mushy.  Remove from oven.  Rotate pan occasionally.  Let cool and set.  If you used parchment paper, cut into strips.  If a silpat was used, carefully peel whole fruit leather off silpat and place on a piece of parchment paper or waxed paper.  Cut into strips.  

Store in airtight container.   

 

 

Jerk Chicken Burgers + Simple Crunchy Slaw

It's the end of summer and you might as well spend it grilling these spicy little chicken burgers. I'm pretty excited about these.  Spicy and complex.  We served these with a super simple slaw and lime buttered corn.  These should probably be grilled but they can also be cooked in a pan or grill pan.  

Scotch bonnets are hot, hot peppers with a fruity, almost sweet notes that range in colors from green to yellow to orange to bright red.  They can be swapped out for habaneros if needed.  As with all chile peppers, wear gloves when working with these and wash your tools and cutting board when done.  We keep a box of disposable gloves on top of the fridge for chile pepper chopping.  And don't touch your eyes or nose if you've been touching the peppers.  

Makes 4.

Jerk Chicken Burgers 

1 lb ground chicken thighs

1 scotch bonnet pepper, seeded, minced

1/2 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves

2 scallions, white + light green parts, minced

s + white pepper

10 allspice berries, ground

2 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

zest of 1 lime

1 1/2 teaspoon brown sugar

1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

1 1/2 teaspoon vinegar (white, red wine or apple)

Fold all ingredients together to evenly combine.  Be careful not to over mix, it can alter the texture of the ground meat.  Let mixture marinate in fridge 30 minutes (longer is ok too, up to 8 hours)  

Form 4 patties and grill until done, flipping once.  For proper grill marks, heat part of the grill to high heat, once hot, place burger on grates.  Cook a few minutes until grill marks are present and turn 1/4 way.  Cook about 2 more minutes more, flip, cook and then 1/4 turn.  

Serve with a simple slaw: Whisk 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar with 1 teaspoon mayo until there are no lumps.  Toss with 1 1/2 cup shredded savoy cabbage, 1 1/2 cup shredded iceberg lettuce, 1 shredded carrot and 1 tablespoon caraway seeds.  Salt and pepper, to taste.  Use immediately.

 

 

 

AM Breakfast Smoothie

Another quick breakfast.  The flax and almond meal make this smoothie a bit more substantial.  I use whatever fruit looks good and ripe.  The more ripe the fruit, the naturally sweeter the smoothie.  Peaches, nectarines, plums, blueberries, strawberries, melons, raspberries and bananas are all great for this. I like to mix it up.  The pictured smoothie has peaches and raspberries.  

A note on the flax seeds.  I store mine whole and always grind freshly to order in a clean coffee grinder.  This extends their shelf life and grinding makes them digestible.  

Feel free to adjust this one as you see fit.  Use any type of yogurt and milk.  Easily made dairy free.  And any sweetener you prefer:  sugar, honey, maple syrup, agave, brown rice syrup... do you have a sweetener you like?  I'm still hooked on agave.  

Makes 1 smoothie.

AM Breakfast Shake

1/2 teaspoon whole flax seeds

2 teaspoons almond meal

1/2 cup plain yogurt  (any kind)

1/2 cup chopped fruit (peeled, pitted as necessary) 

sweetener, to taste

splash of milk, to taste (any type of milk)

Grind the flax seeds to a powder.  Blend with almond meal, yogurt and fruit.  Adjust sweetness and consistency as needed with the sweetener and milk of your choice.  

 

 

Vegetable Chili

We make this about once a month.  It's flavorful, satisfying and healthy.  Cam likes it over brown rice with a pile of kale sautéed with garlic and lemon juice.  I'll eat it over anything.  

I posted a veggie chili a couple years ago but after making it so many times the recipe has been tweaked a bit.  Here's the newer, improved version.  

Serves 6.

Vegetable Chili

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 yellow onion, small dice

2 small carrots, peeled, small dice

kernels from 1 ear of fresh corn

3 cloves garlic, minced

28 oz tin crushed tomatoes

20 oz water

2 tablespoons cumin

2 tablespoons chile powder

1 1/2 tablespoons dried oregano

1 1/2 tablespoons paprika

3/4 cup chopped green beans

1 zucchini, small dice

1 yellow squash, small dice

1 red bell pepper, seeded, stemmed, small dice

14 oz tin black beans, rinsed, drained

14 oz tin kidney beans, rinsed drained

lime juice, to taste

s + p

In a pot, heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add onions and carrots, cooking until onions are soft and clear.  Add corn and garlic, cook, stirring so garlic doesn't burn, 3 minutes.  Add tomatoes, water and spices.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until carrots are tender, about 15 minutes.  Add green beans, zucchini, yellow squash, bell pepper, black beans and kidney beans.  cook until green beans are crisp tender, about 5 minutes.  Season with lime juice, salt and pepper.  

 

Breakfast in a Hurry: Ham, Egg + Cheese Frittata

hameggbreakfast.jpg

I decided I needed a very quick but very satisfying breakfast for busy weekday mornings.  I have a few others up my sleeve I'll be posting in the next few weeks.  This was one of them.  I make a pan of these Sunday night, cut it into squares and then monday morning eat a square on a piece of seedy, sprouted whole grain bread.  It's delicious and the protein holds me over til lunch.  

I call these egg squares, but it's a frittata with ham, leeks and cheese.  

4-6 servings.

Ham + Cheese Egg Squares

1 leek, white + light green parts, halved, thinly sliced

4 oz sliced ham, chopped

2 oz sharp cheddar cheese, grated

5 cage free eggs

s + p

Heat oven to 350 degrees and grease an 8 x 8" pan.  Set it aside.  

In a small saute pan, heat a oil over medium heat.  Add leeks.  Cook until soft.  Remove from heat and toss with chopped ham.  Spread ham and leek mix over the bottom of the prepared pan.  Sprinkle evenly with grated cheese.  

Crack eggs into a bowl, season with salt and pepper.  Whisk until yolks and whites are well combined.  Pour over cheese, ham and leeks.  Arrange ingredients under the eggs, maybe pressing of stirring if needed.  Place in oven and bake 20 minutes, eggs should be just set.   

Remove from oven.  Cut into squares.  I like to cut out a bread sized square, put in on a piece of multigrain toast.  And eat it. 

Watermelon Salad!

What are your favorite things about summer?  For me it's going to the beach, being in the sun, fruit picking and the glorious bounty that is the green market.  I always look for watermelon.  It's such a summery fruit.  

Watermelon salad's seem to be everywhere on restaurant menus and it's no surprise to me.  They're crunchy, simple and refreshing.  Hydrating too, right?  (ha!)  I can eat a crazy amount of watermelon.  

Use whatever herbs you like.  I suggest mint, chervil, parsley, chives and thyme.  

serves 2.

Watermelon Salad + Lemon Vinaigrette

for the vinaigrette

1 1/2 - 2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/8 teaspoon dijon mustard

s + p

for the salad

1 head bibb lettuce leaves, washed, dried, chopped

about 2 tablespoons fresh chopped herbs

2 cups chopped seedless watermelon

2 oz fresh goat cheese, chopped

2 teaspoons pumpkin seeds

2 teaspoons shelled pistachios

In a small bowl, whisk lemon juice, olive oil and dijon together until emulsified.  Season with salt and pepper until well balanced, adding more lemon juice if necessary. 

Toss lettuce and herbs with vinaigrette.  Pile dressed leaves onto 2 plates.  Top each with watermelon, goat cheese, pumpkin seeds and pistachios.  Serve immediately.   

 

 

Green Tea Meringue Parfait

The secret ingredient in this is matcha, a powdered green tea.  Matcha is powerful stuff and a little goes a long way.  This in an crisp, airy dessert with whipped cream, raspberries and a drizzle of honey.  

Serves 6.

Green Tea Meringue Parfaits

for the meringues

2 egg whites, at room temperature

pinch salt

1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

1/2 cup white sugar

1 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch

1 tablespoon lemon juice

3/4 teaspoon matcha powder

for the whipped cream

8oz heavy cream

1 tablespoon sugar

for the topping

8oz fresh respberries

honey

Heat oven to 225 degrees.

In a mixing bowl, with an electric mixer, whip egg whites, salt and cream of tartar until they begin to become foamy, about 1 minute.  Keep beating an add sugar 1 tablespoon at a time.  Beat until thick and glossy.  Beat in cornstarch, vanilla, lemon juice and matcha.  Beat until stiff meringue has formed.  It will hold its shape on an inverted whisk/beater.  

Spoon  dollops of meringue onto a slipat or parchment paper lined baking sheet.  They dollops require minimal spacing.  They expand only a centimeter or so when baking, usually from slight deflation from moving the pan around.  Size according to serving glasses. 

Bake 40 minutes.  Turn pan.  Bake 40 minutes more.  Remove from oven and cool.   

In a small bowl, whisk heavy cream and sugar.  Don't over whip.  

In serving cups, later meringues with whipped cream, raspberries and a drizzle of honey.  

Fish + Chips, Part 2: The Fish Fry

Fried food overload!  Sometimes you just have to, yes?  Just make sure it comes with malt vinegar, chips and mayo.  Here's part II to the previous Fish + Chips post.  

This is a fried fish with a lime beer batter.  I recommend a lighter mexican pilsner.  Goes great with lime.  Buy a six pack and serve it with the fish and chips.  

Beer Battered Lime Fish + Chips

48 oz canola oil

s + p

10 oz cod filets, skin removed, cut into chunks

1 cup flour

6 oz mexican lager style beer, like pacifico, tecate, corona

juice + zest of 1/2 lime

1/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

Heat canola oil in a deep pot to 380 degrees.  

Season cod pieces with salt and pepper.  In a bowl, combine flour, beer, lime juice, zest, baking powder and salt.  Dip cod pieces into beer batter and carefully slip into hot oil.   Use a spatula or long handled kitchen spoon to submerge the pieces during frying.  Cook until golden brown and crispy.  Transfer to towels to drain.  Serve immediately with these chips and this harissa mayo.

Fish + Chips, Part 1: French Fries + Harissa Mayo

Fried potato slices.  Golden and crisp on the outside with a warm, fluffy interior.  There are several important things to be mindful of when making fries.  First, they need to be rinsed well.  This removes some of the starch.  This makes for a less soggy, more crispy fry.    Blanching potatoes first, in the oil at a lower temperature, gives them a chance to cook a bit.  They can then be thrown back into hotter oil and will crisp up perfectly.  Be sure to season them while they're still hot.  

2-3 servings.

French Fries

3 idaho potatoes

about 48 oz canola oil

lots of old bay seasoning

s + p

Peel potatoes and slice into batons of desired thickness.   Place slices in a bowl of cold water as you go, soak for 20 minutes.  Rinse potato slices very well, until water runs clear.  Dry completely.  

In a large pot, heat canola oil to 300 degrees.  Add potato slices and cook about 2 minutes.  Potatoes should not change color.  Remove from oil, transfer to towel to drain.  

Raise oil temperature to 390 degrees.  Add blanched potatoes back to the hot oil.  Work in batches if needed.  Fry until golden brown.  Remove from oil, transfer to towel to drain.  Season with old bay seasoning, salt and pepper.   Serve with harissa mayo.  Recipe below.  

Harissa Mayo

1 egg yolk

1 teaspoon vinegar (white, white wine, champagne...)

1/2 teaspoon water

1 teaspoon dijon mustard

pinch salt

8 oz canola oil

2 teaspoons to 2 tablespoons harissa

Place egg yolk, vinegar, water, dijon and salt in a bowl.  Whisk to combine.  Add oil in a slow, steady stream, whisking slowly.  Whisk faster once half the oil is added and a thin mayonaise has formed.  

Stir in harissa.  Not all harissa is created equally so you might only need 2 teaspoons or you may need more.  (We added 2 tablespoons.)  

Serve with fries. 

Ginger Peach Margarita

A tasty margarita might be just the thing you need to cool off during these hot summer days.  For an extra kick of ginger, throw in a small slice and muddle it with the peach.  

Serves 1. 

Ginger Peach Margarita

3 peach slices

1.5 oz blanco tequila

.5 oz triple sec

1 oz fresh lime juice

.5 oz ginger simple syrup

lime wedge + thin ginger slice for garnish

Muddle the peaches in a glass.  Pour in tequila, triple sec, lime juice and simple syrup.  Add ice, shake and tumble into a salted glass.  Garnish with lime wedge and ginger slice.  

 

Ginger Simple Syrup

Ginger syrup, it's so simple to make.  (ha! Sorry.)  It's great way to punch up your lemonade, ice tea or cocktails this summer.  You'll find it in a margarita in an upcoming post.  Store it in the fridge.

Ginger Simple Syrup

8 oz water

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup chopped, peeled fresh ginger

In a small sauce pot, combine water, sugar and ginger.  Bring to a boil.  Remove from heat and let steep for 30 minutes.  Strain.  

Street Corn

Elote, elote, elote!  It's summer and there's plenty of delicious corn just waiting to be grilled and slathered with toppings, right?  My favorite street fair snack.  

Cotija cheese is a salty, dry, firm, cow's milk cheese made in Mexico.  It can be found at most grocery stores, usually around the cheese counter.  It will most likely be sold in rounds or blocks that are easily grated.  Think of it as a Mexican parmesan cheese. 

If cooking on a grill, corn can be dipped in water and grilled in it's husks.  Cool, remove husks and silks.  Return to the hot grill for a few minutes then dress with toppings.  

Make as many servings as you need.

Street Fair Corn

fresh corn, on the cob, in its husk, stemmed trimmed

mayo or Chipotle Aoli

grated cotija cheese, about 1 oz per cob

ancho chile powder

lime wedges, for serving

Bring a pot of water to a boil.  Add corn cobs, husks on, and blanche 10 minutes.  Shock in an ice bath until cool.  Remove husks.  Dry.  Place in hot pan, directly over flame (gas range) or grill to blacken slightly.  

Lightly brush with mayo or chipotle aoli.  Roll in grated cotija cheese.  Season with a dusting of ancho chile powder and serve with lime wedges.  

White Chocolate Brownies + Blueberries

These were almost raspberry brownies but we made a split decision at the market.  I think any kind of berry would be great in these.  

White Chocolate Berry Brownies

1 stick unsalted butter

8oz white chocolate (I like chips)

2/3 cup sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 eggs

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup ap flour

3/4 cup fresh blueberries

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Line an eight inch square pan with foil or parchment paper and grease.  Set aside.

Place a metal bowl over a pot of simmering water.  Add butter and melt.  Add chocolate chips, and melt.  Remove from heat.  Mix in sugar and vanilla.  Beat in eggs.  Mix in salt and flour.  When well combined, fold in berries.  

Pour into prepared pan and bake until center of brownies are set and test clean, about 30 minutes.  

 

 

Summer Clam Chowder

A soup for summer!  Just like a manhattan style clam chowder but a little sunnier.  

Summer Clam Chowder

3 - 4 strips bacon, chopped

1 tablespoon grape seed oil

1 shallot, minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

splash dry white wine

1 quart vegetable stock

1 14oz tin diced tomatoes

1 cup chopped clams in their juices

1 tablespoon thyme

1 teaspoon celery seeds

1/4 teaspoon red chile flakes

2 bay leaves

1 potato, peeled, medium dice

kernels from 2 ears of corn

1 1/4 cup (4.5oz) green beans, chopped small

s + p

In a large pot, over medium heat, cook bacon until crisp.  Transfer to a paper towel to drain.  Wipe out pot.  Add grape seed oil.  When oil is hot add shallots, cook until clear.  Add garlic and cook 30 seconds, stirring, not letting garlic burn or become too brown.  Carefully deglaze pot with a splash of white wine.  Add stock, tomatoes, clams, thyme, celery seeds, chile flakes, bay leaves, potato and corn kernels.  Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer.  Simmer 20 minutes, until potato and corn are soft.  Add green beans.  Cook 5 minutes, or until green beans are soft.  

Season with salt and pepper.  

 

Strawberry Yogurt Popsicles

Fruity, frozen and delightful.  I love a cold treat in the summer.  

The more ripe your strawberries are the less sugar you're going to need.   Things taste less sweet once frozen so take that into consideration.  

Also, the yogurt you choose will alter the taste of your popsicles.  I used fat free vanilla yogurt and did not add any sugar, because the yogurt is sweet I wanted to keep these in the snack territory instead of dessert.   If you use plain yogurt, you will want more sugar.  Full fat yogurt will result in a creamier, less icy popsicle but does have more fat.  

Makes about 10 popsicles, depending on mold sizes. 

Strawberry Yogurt Popsicles

1 lb fresh strawberries, hulled

1 cup fat free vanilla yogurt

1 tablespoon sugar, optional

Blend strawberries, yogurt and sugar, if using.  Blend to your preferred consistency:  chunky, smooth... whatever.  Pour into popsicle molds, insert sticks and freeze until completely frozen, about 4 hours.  

 

Natural Chemical free Household Cleaner

Our new favorite cleaning product.  It's chemical free and easy to make.  I especially like this one for the kitchen as it's food safe and edible.   It does smell mildly of vinegar before it dries, if that bothers you add a few drops of lavender or a eucalyptus oil.  

Orange Vinegar Household Cleaner

1 cup water

1 cup white vinegar

peels of 2 oranges

Place water, vinegar and orange peels in a jar.  Let it sit for 1 week.  Remove orange peels and funnel into a squirt bottle.  

To use:  spray surface and wipe with a dry or damp towel.  Let dry.

Ginger Peach Mini Pies + Coconut Crust

minipie03.jpg

What's better than pie?  Lots of things, but pie is pretty great.  Even better when it's served as a miniature/individually sized portion that you can eat all by yourself.  Just make a little dent in the middle, ad ice cream and it's perfect.  

Coconut oil pie crust is great if you're vegan.  It's tender and has a mild taste of coconut.  

Recipe makes 4 mini pies but portion will also make 1 normal sized pie.  

Makes 4 mini pies.

Ginger Peach Mini Pies + Coconut Crust

for the crust

 2 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour

2 tablespoons light brown sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup coconut oil, cold and solid

ice cold water

for the filling

2 lb ripe apricots, pitted, sliced

1 tablespoon grated ginger  

3 tablespoons flour

2 pinches salt

12 scrapes of whole nutmeg

4 tablespoons light brown sugar

In a bowl, whisk flour, brown sugar and salt to evenly combine.  Add cold coconut oil with a pastry cutter.  Use your hands if necessary.  Combine just enough so pea sized pieces of coconut oil remain and the rest looks like sand.  Add cold water tablespoon at a time until dough feels very hydrated and sticks together as a ball.  Cut dough into 8 pieces or 2 pieces.  Flatten each piece into a disc.  Wrap securely in plastic and let rest in fridge 20 minutes.  

While dough is resting in the fridge, heat oven to 375 degrees.  Grease pie tins and set aside.  Toss apricot slices, ginger, flour, salt, nutmeg and light brown sugar.  Set aside.  

Roll out 4 discs for bottom crusts:  place a dough disc between two sheets of parchment paper and roll with rolling pin to 1/8 inch thick.  Carefully peel back top sheet, invert over tin and peel away remaining piece of paper.  Gently press into tin.  Fill each tin with apricot mixture.  

Roll out remaining 4 pieces of dough for top crusts between two sheets of parchment paper to 1/8 inch thick.  Carefully peel back top sheet and use a pastry decortaing tip or straw to poke out holes.  Invert polka dotted dough sheet over filled tin with paper side up.  Carefully, peel back paper, seal and trim edges.  

If you're not vegan you can use a pastry brush to apply an egg wash of 1 egg yolk whisked with 1 tablespoon of milk.  To keep things vegan, use soy milk. 

Place in oven and bake 30 minutes.  Crust should be golden brown and pies fragrant.  

Cool and serve.