Saturday Sun 01.13.2024

Created by Laura Wright
A head-on shot shows a frond from a wild phragmites plant with a bit of snow dusted on top. More phragmites is seen in the background.

Welcome to the weekend. It’s a slow one over here as my partner hasn’t been feeling 100%. Some more snow is on the way today for us and a lot of folks in eastern Canada/midwestern US. I hope that everyone is staying safe and warm. I’m trying this no-knead seeded oat bread (with maple syrup instead of honey) this weekend and am hoping to get back on my meal prep habit a bit.

My version of meal prep is a bit more loose, favouring meal components over finished dishes. I’ll make a pot of farro or quinoa and some beans, maybe a simple lentil salad, chop some greens, roast up whole sweet potatoes or butternut squash, marinate tofu pieces, a batch of energy bites etc. Just having stuff that I can grab and assemble is so helpful. I recently received some Souper Cubes (as part of a PR gift), so I’m excited to add them to the prep rotation. I will report back on how they’re working for me!

Wishing you a restful weekend with the people/pets that you love. Be well and take care ♥️

5 Things I’m Reading:

  1. I Was Addicted to My Smartphone, So I Switched to a Flip Phone for a Month
  2. The Stanley Cup Craze Has Gotten Out of Hand — What It Says About Waste, Consumption, and Status
  3. 20 Years Searching for Workouts Taught Me These 10 Things
  4. Thus Have We Heard
  5. 99 Ways To Creatively Recharge

5 Things I’m Enjoying:

  1. This conversation between Björk and Robin Wall-Kimmerer, author of Braiding Sweetgrass.
  2. I’ve been drinking Sleepytime tea for years and absolutely love Celestial Seasoning’s Sleepytime bear-focused Instagram account 😊
  3. Excited for True Detective: Night Country (Jodie Foster!!)
  4. Loving Monalogue for cottagecore content
  5. I enjoy baking bread at home whenever I can, but my partner brought home a loaf of multigrain porridge bread from Dear Grain Breads in Hamilton recently that was so lovely. New fave!

5 Questions:

  1. What is your favourite brand of tahini?
    It’s Soom by a mile! I order it through Natura Market here in Canada. For a long time I thought I disliked tahini and I just wasn’t understanding something about its prevalence in vegan recipes. Nope! Just needed a really good quality one to win me over.
  2. Is an air fryer really any different from an oven with convection?
    In principle, no it is not. They both use a fan to circulate hot air. The air fryer does heat up faster and it tends to cook foods faster because of the smaller cooking chamber. Also, in the warmer months I favour it over my oven (which has convection) because it doesn’t make the kitchen as hot. I have to say: the crispy texture of tofu in the air fryer is unbeatable. I would not want to go without mine because of this reason alone. Let me know if you want this simple staple recipe published here!
  3. Tips for making the best beans and making them easier for digestion?
    I highly recommend my brothy beans recipe! These are my personal favourite–they just have so much flavour and the texture is sublime. Perfect for this time of year! The most tried and true tips for making them easier to digest: soak your beans overnight for 12 hours (this is a necessary step in the recipe I mention above), sprout them if you can, add a piece of kombu or wakame seaweed when cooking–helps to break down the phytic acid, which can make them harder for some folks to digest (this also imparts a bit of umami flavour).
  4. Any way to help homemade nut milk to not separate in coffee?
    Sunflower lecithin liquid can be helpful. You’ll need about 1 tablespoon per litre of milk. It’s a natural emulsifier that binds the fats in the nuts with the water that you use to make the milk.
  5. My partner wants to embark on a vegan journey and I’m the main cook in our house. I feel very intimidated despite following you for years and cooking your recipes usually a few times a month. Any words of inspiration?
    When people ask me my advice on starting a vegan journey, I do not encourage them to go all in and change their entire life right away. I recommend starting slow–like one vegan meal per week for a bit, and then “graduating” to one vegan meal a day and so on. Even swapping in a vegan version of your favourite snack! Starting slow with minimal pressure on yourself is the best way to develop positive associations, to stay consistent, and to make a new habit less intimidating in the process. I can admit that my recipes tend to be more complicated than most. I recommend finding a few sites that specialize in simpler and more streamlined vegan options to add to the arsenal. Does your partner have certain omnivorous meals that they love? Start by trying to “veganize” that meal once a week. The same strategy applies to any go-to meals that you make more often–are there a couple swaps that you can make to veganize? Breakfast and lunch are usually pretty simple meals to take in a vegan direction right off the bat I find. Maybe just try getting those handled for a month or so and then start working on the dinner aspect? There’s lots of directions to approach from!
13/01/2024

28 comments

  • Lyndsay

    Thank you Laura for another gentle post with a not too overwhelming selection of inspiration!! And I can’t believe the first question was about your fave tahini because I was literally googling best tahini brands Canada earlier today!!! For a cookie recipe.

    Love your kind and encouraging advice on starting to transition to veganism!

    And I’m very excited (but scared :p) for True Detective, too!

  • Debbie

    Would love a recipe for crispy tofu in the air fryer and which brand of air fryer do you recommend? I’ve been looking for a ceramic one, but am not having much luck. Thank you!

    • Laura Wright

      I’ve used both the Instant Pot vortex (nonstick coating) and the Our Place Wonder Oven (stainless interior with air fry function). Both are great! The Instant Pot one seems a bit more powerful, but I appreciate the multiple functions and compact size of the Wonder Oven!
      -L

  • Liz

    Thank you for answering my question about moving to a more vegan focused diet! I think this is great advice and shared it with my partner <3

  • Deborah

    LOL…when I saw the mention of Stanley Cup…I thought it was referring to hockey :)

    • Shari

      Me too had no idea this collection craze was a thing!

      • Laura Wright

        Deborah and Shari,
        Ahahaha I love this. A craze for the actual Stanley Cup trophy definitely makes more sense than the water tumblers though ;)
        -L

  • Susan

    Thank you so much for including that conversation between Bjork and Robin. Really got a lot out of it. be well, stay warm :)

  • Monica

    My mother grew up in the Middle East and I remember the delight with which she ate tahini and halva here in Ontario…she was transported to her youth and roots through the taste. I couldn’t stand tahini as a kid but now, I’m obsessed! It’s a funny connection I have to her now she’s gone. I haven’t tried Soom yet but I do swear by Al Kanater and use it in absolutely everything!

    • Laura Wright

      Hi Monica!
      They sell Al Kanater tahini at one of my go-to grocery spots. I’ll pick it up next time! Thank you so much :)
      -L

  • Dawn

    Hands down this my fav blog and my first stop for meal planning every week. Next time you’re in Toronto, check out Parallel tahini. I live in Buffalo and always, always bring a few tubs home with me. It’s even better than Soom, which I use when I run out of parallel. Their restaurant is also *chef’s kiss*. Thank you, Laura, for bringing so much joy to our home through great food!

    • Laura Wright

      Hi Dawn!
      I love Parallel! Such a lovely restaurant and the smoky chipotle tahini is amazing :)
      -L

  • Claudia

    Hi Laura, I savor your Saturday Sun newsletter and oh so look forward to finding it in my inbox on the weekend. You’re my weekend reading material beating out the Sunday NYTs. I’m going to incorporate Awe Walks with my daughter’s mini golden doodle by not wearing my airpods and being totally present to my wooded surroundings. xoxo

    • Laura Wright

      I love this, Claudia! Enjoy :)
      -L

  • Julie

    Hi Laura. I love your website for recipes and Saturday mornings with Saturday Sun. I made the fennel apple salad for Christmas and your pesto orzo salad to take to a NYE dinner and received so many compliments. Everyone really enjoyed. So delicious. Thank you for sharing.

    • Laura Wright

      Hi Julie,
      I’m so glad that the recipes are working for you and that you’re enjoying the newsletter!
      -L

  • Kristin

    Hey laura! I’ve been following you for years and have been making your delicious recipes. Recently I also started a newsletter and in my very first one I linked to a recipe from your blog that I use all the time. It’s a Miso Tahini dressing and I put it on everything. Thanks for the great links to so many interesting things. I have a new resolution: reading newsletters instead of scrolling. So much more meaningful connection and the scrolling has become such a time waster. So look at that! Your newsletter came at the perfect time. Thanks!
    -Kristin

    • Laura Wright

      Kristin,
      I am personally trying to read more newsletters and spend less time on Instagram too. Hope it goes well for both of us :)
      -L

  • Ashley

    Hi Laura,

    I always love reading through your Saturday Sun posts every week. There’s such great, light-hearted content in every edition. Thanks for another great one! Hope you enjoy your weekend :)

    • Laura Wright

      Thanks so much, Ashley! Hope you had a nice weekend :)
      -L

  • Laura Lambrecht

    Yes please to the tofu air fryer recipe! I agree that I use my air fryer most in the warm months when I don’t want the house to get any hotter.
    Also thanks for the interesting article about the consumption of those Stanley cups. When I saw the images of throngs of people at Target I was shocked. It’s like they are robots, not thinking of what they are doing, just buying, buying, buying. Anyhow, that was a great article. Thanks for the wonderful newsletters. I always read them in their entirety because they are so thoughtful and helpful.

    • Laura Wright

      Hi Laura!
      It’s my pleasure to share this newsletter every week. I’ll get going on the air fryer tofu ;)
      -L

  • Amy

    I just made the switch to a light phone although I’ve still been carrying my old phone as I am afraid to not have a smart phone in certain situations as the article mentions. Although it needs WiFi to be used. Maybe in February I’ll test removing it officially! I always debate getting an air fryer. I hate having too many kitchen appliances especially as my interest in cooking has declined since the pandemic. But I eat a lot of tofu and hate how hot our kitchen gets in the summer using any oven appliances. Any thoughts on the air fryers that are a multi function unit such as toaster? It would be lovely to have something that did both! Also would love your tofu recipe if we ever get one! Definitely agree that I love to wake up on Saturday and see the Saturday sun in my inbox. Happy weekend everyone! ❤️

    • Laura Wright

      Hi Amy,
      I have the Our Place Wonder Oven which is a toaster/mini oven/air fryer combo and it’s great! Nice and compact and works well in every function.
      -L

  • Stephanie Block

    Good morning! I absolutely love waking up Saturday morning knowing Saturday Sun will be waiting for me to read and reread. Thank you for your offerings. I would love your tofu marinade recipe, if you have time to share. With gratitude

    • Laura Wright

      Hi Stephanie,
      It’s my pleasure! Have a good one :)
      -L

  • Lisa

    Hi Laura,
    I’d love to see your air fryer recipe for tofu. I recently acquired an air fryer and am figuring out the best ways to use it.
    Thanks!

    • Laura Wright

      Hi Lisa,
      I’ll get working on that tofu recipe then :) Once you start using your air fryer, it’s hard to stop haha.
      -L