Thursday, 31 January 2013

Battered Tofu with Dill Mayonnaise

I can't really claim this recipe as such because I used a packet batter mix but it was so easy and so delicious! I used Vitarium Gluten Free Batter Mix which also happens to be vegan! All you do is add water and it tasted amazing. These were great hot and cold. Great for a snack, for a main or on sandwiches.

Battered Tofu with Dill Mayonnaise


1 packet of Vitarium Gluten Free Batter Mix
1 Tbls lemon pepper
1 400g block of firm tofu
Oil for frying (amount will vary depending on whether you want to shallow or deep fry)

Dill Mayonnaise

1/2 cup vegan mayonnaise (I used Praise 99% fat free)
1/4 cup chopped dill
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp lemon pepper

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl.


In a large frying pan (or deep fryer) heat the oil till boiling then turn down to medium-high.
Make up batter according to the packet instructions (basically just add water to the consistency you want)
Stir in lemon pepper and mix well.
Press the tofu on a board of the sink to release any excess water.
Slice tofu into sticks (around 2 inches thick) and add a few at a time to the batter mixture.
Place batter coated sticks in frying pan (try not to let them touch as they will stick together) and fry until golden on one side then flip and do the other side.
When done place on paper towel to soak up excess oil.
You may need to do a couple of batches.
Serve with dill mayonnaise.

Friday, 25 January 2013

Coco Chocolate

Coco Chocolate is a Sydney based chocolatier that has a lot of dark chocolate vegan options. The chocolate is sooo creamy. They even have vegan boxed chocolates and come in the nicest packaging. They sell online too.

I was given their Gold, Frankincense and Myrrh chocolate for Xmas one year and it was divine...although only available at Xmas :(

This the Organic Handmade Dark Chocolate With Orange & Geranium Oil & Orange & Lemon Rind, Organic Handmade Dark Chocolate With Cranberry & Spice and a Dark Chocolate Strawberry Fondant Heart.

Double Chocolate Lamingtons

For Australia Day I made chocolate lamingtons. Lamingtons traditionally are an Australian cake (although there is an on going war with New Zealand about who really owns it) that is a square vanilla sponge soaked in a chocolate icing and then covered in desiccated coconut. This chocolate version is delicious! I adapted this recipe from Dan Lepard's on the SMH website.

Double Chocolate Lamingtons


300g castor sugar
50g cocoa
75ml non dairy milk (I used rice milk)
50g vegan butter (I used Nuttalex)
50g vegan dark chocolate (I used Green & Black 70%)
50ml sunflower oil
4 egg replacers (as per packet instructions)
100ml vegan natural yoghurt (I used Tofutti soy sour cream)
3 tsp vanilla extract
175g plain GF flour
3 tsp baking powder

For the coating (makes 750ml)

15g cocoa
50ml cold non dairy milk (I used rice milk)
175ml boiling water
200g vegan dark chocolate, finely chopped
450g icing sugar
1 250g bag coconut


Line the base of a deep, 20cm square cake tin with non-stick paper and heat the oven to 170C (150C fan-forced). Put the sugar and cocoa in a bowl and beat in the milk. Melt the butter and chocolate in a saucepan, and add to the sugar mix along with the oil. Beat in the eggs until smooth, stir in the yoghurt and vanilla, and mix in the flour and baking powder. Pour into the tin, cover with a slightly domed sheet of foil and bake for an hour. Lift off the foil for the last 15 minutes. Remove, cool in the tin and, while warm, cover with cling film.

For the coating, mix the cocoa and milk until smooth, whisk in the boiling water, then stir in the chocolate until melted. Whisk in the icing sugar until dissolved and pour into a deep, wide jug. Cut the cake into nine, dunk each piece in the coating and fish out with two forks. Roll in coconut and leave to set.

Lima Bean Ragout with Tomato and Thyme

I adapted this recipe from one I found on the Mayo Clinic website. It's a very healthy dish which is light and filling. I used dried Lima beans(or Butter beans) and soaked them over night, then rinsed and boiled for 1 hour.

Lima Bean Ragout with Tomato & Thyme


500g dried Lima beans, soaked, rinsed and cooked
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tomato, peeled and seeded, then diced
1 yellow onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 bay leaves
3 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup vegetable stock or broth
1 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf (Italian) parsley


Once you've cooked your Lima beans transfer with a slotted spoon to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. Drain and set aside.

In a saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over medium heat. Add the tomato, onion, garlic, bay leaf, thyme and salt. Saute until the vegetables soften, about 5 minutes.

Add the stock and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to low, add the cooked Lima beans and simmer, uncovered, until heated through, 2 to 3 minutes. Discard the bay leaf and transfer to a serving bowl. Drizzle with the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and sprinkle with the chopped parsley.

Monday, 21 January 2013

Lemon, Garlic and Chilli Pasta with Ricotta

I adapted this recipe from one on the Heart Foundation website. It was sooo yummy, I had to restrain myself from eating it all in one go. It should, in theory, feed 4.

Lemon, Garlic and Chilli Pasta with Ricotta 


400g spaghetti or tagliatelle
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 garlic cloves, crushed
½ teaspoon dried red chilli flakes, or half a fresh chilli finley chopped, seeds removed (I used sambal olak cause I didn't have chilli flakes)
1 lemon, rind finely grated, juiced
¼ cup finely chopped chives
150g vegan ricotta (I used Tofutti)


Cook pasta in a large saucepan of boiling water, following packet directions until al dente.
Drain, reserving 1/3 cup of the cooking liquid.
Heat the oil in same pan over low heat, add garlic and chilli and cook, stirring, for 1 minute until aromatic.
Increase heat to high, add the reserved pasta cooking water, lemon rind and juice, chives and spaghetti. Toss over low heat until warmed though.
Pile into serving bowls, crumble over the ricotta, season with freshly ground black pepper and serve.

Waldorf Salad

After watching reruns of Fawlty Towers (Sorry, we're all out of Waldorfs) with my husband I decided I wanted to try a Waldorf Salad which is surprisingly easy, summery and filling. Apparently the original recipe from the Waldorf-Astoria.

Waldorf Salad


1/2 bunch celery (washed and sliced)
2 Granny Smith apples (washed and sliced into chunks)
250g walnuts (crushed or whole)
1 cup green  grapes (sliced in half)
2 Tbls vegan mayo
2 tsp lemon juice
salt & pepper to taste


Whisk mayo, lemon juice and salt & pepper in a small bowl and stir well through other ingredients.
If you want to be really fancy you can grill your walnuts first.

Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Spinach & Cheese Filo Pastry Parcels

I adapted this recipe up from the SBS wesbite, recipe by David Tsirekas. The filling was delicious! Maybe it was the gluten free flour but I found the pastry very hard, not like filo at all. Next time I might use store bought vegan gluten free pastry or use a different recipe. (Served here with pickled cabbage)
Note: Pastry should be made the day before.

Spinach & Cheese Filo Pastry Parcels
Makes 4 large


Pastry;300g (2 cups) plain gluten free flour, sifted, plus extra, to dust
3½ tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp salt
165ml water

Cheese and spinach filling;25g vegan butter (I used Nuttalex)
1 tbsp gluten free plain flour
125ml (½ cup) warm rice/soy milk
250g vegan fetta (I used Vegusto No-Moo Piquant)
250g vegan ricotta, crumbled (I used Tofutti)
4 silverbeet leaves, stalks removed (I used frozen)
2 tsp olive oil
½ bunch spring onions, finely chopped
2 tbsp dill, chopped
¼ cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped


Day before;
Combine flour and 1 tsp salt in a bowl.
Stir in 165ml water until mixture comes together; add more water if necessary.
Turn out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead until mixture forms a stiff dough.
Add 2 tbsp oil, 1 tbsp at a time, kneading between each addition for a further 5 minutes or until dough is smooth and elastic.
Coat with 2 tsp oil and place in a bowl.
Cover with a tea towel and stand in a warm, draught-free place for 2 hours.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and divide into 6 rounds.
Flatten each round to 1cm-thick and brush with remaining 1 tbsp oil.
Place 3 rounds on top of each other, cover, and refrigerate for 1 hour or overnight until cold.

Day of baking;
Preheat oven to 200°C.
To make filling, melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat.
Add flour and cook, stirring, for 1 minute or until starting to change colour.
Slowly add milk and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes or until slightly thickened.
Add fetta and ricotta and stir to combine.
Blanch silverbeet leaves in a pan of boiling water for 45 seconds or until wilted, then drain and refresh in iced water.
Drain, squeeze to remove excess water, and chop.
Heat oil in a frying pan over medium heat.
Add spring onions, dill and parsley and cook for 2 minutes or until onion is softened.
Add to cheese mixture with silverbeet and stir to combine.
Season with salt and pepper. Allow to cool completely.

Working with one stack of dough at a time, using a rolling pin, roll out on a large floured rectangular table to as thin as you can.
Then, place your hands under the dough, palms facing down, and gently stretch the dough using the back of your hands until it reaches 60cm x 1.2m. Cut dough into 3 x 40cm x 60cm pieces and brush each piece with extra oil.
Leaving a 4cm border, place one-sixth of the filling along the short edge in three portions.

This will help prevent the coil from bursting.
Fold pastry border over filling and roll up into a log.
Roll pastry into a coil and trim the end.
Repeat with remaining filo and filling.
Place each coil side-by-side on a greased oven tray with cut-ends touching.
Brush over top of pastry with some olive oil.
Bake for 30 minutes or until golden.

Baked Quinoa Chilli with Corn Bread

I adapted this recipe from  a recipe Vegan Chili Pone on Gormandize with A-Dizzle & K-Bobo's blog. So delicious, so easy and very light. This can easily be eaten in the warmer months. You could bulk it up with beans and vege mince for the winter months. I reheated this for 3 days and it was still delicious!

Baked Quinoa Chilli with Corn Bread
Serves 4-6



2 tbsp oil
1 large onion, peeled and diced
4 garlic cloves, crushed
1 chilli, fresh and chopped, seeds removed
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp sweet paprika
1/2 tsp smoky paprika
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 cup quinoa
6 tomatoes, chopped
2 tbsp chopped fresh oregano
1 cup vegetable stock
1 tbsp tamari soy sauce
3 tbsp tomato paste


1 cup rice milk
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 tsp Agar Agar powder
2 tsp corn flour
1 cup flour
1 cup polenta
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup baking powder
1/3 cup oil
1/3 cup water


Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.
Heat the oil in a large saucepan and sauté the onion until soft. Add the garlic and chilli, and sauté a further 2 minutes.
Add the dry spices and cook for another 30 seconds then add the bulghur and stir to coat with the spice mix.
Add the tomatoes, oregano, stock, soy sauce and tomato paste. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook, covered, for 20 minutes.
To make the cornbread: combine the soy milk, apple cider vinegar and ground flaxseeds. Whisk together and set aside for about 5 minutes to curdle and thicken.
In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients and stir well. Make a small well in the middle of the dry ingredients and add the soy milk. oil and water. Mix well until it forms a smooth batter.
Once the Chili is cooked, remove from heat and transfer to a medium sized casserole dish.
Spoon the cornbread batter over the top of the Chili. It doesn't have to be too neat, as the cornbread will expand and rise to create an even covering as it cooks.
Bake, uncovered, in the oven for 30 minutes, or until the cornbread is crisp and golden. Serve.

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

A Vegan Christmas 2012

I had three Christmas days this year and it was quite exhausting. I cooked everything for one of the days but only nutloaves and gravy for the others. All gluten free as well of course!

Some of the beautiful vegan salads my friend's Mum made (sorry no recipes for these)...



Fruit Mince Pies

Date Balls

Spinach, Chickpea and Chaat Masala Potato Salad

This recipe comes from Simon Bryant's Vegies book and was featured in a SMH article. I had to change the spices because I couldn't find Chaat Masala and I added mango. This salad was delicious and good for a few days afterwards.

Spinach, Chickpea and Chaat Masala Potato Salad
Serves 4


1 cup canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed
500g potatoes
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
4 tablspoons extra virgin olive oil
2 small onions diced
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 1/2 tablespoons chaat masala (**or see substitute below)
5 large handfuls baby spinach
1 good sized bunch coriander, stems and leaves roughly chopped
1 long green chili, scliced, seeds and all
1 bunch spring onions, green parts cut in 2.5 cm lengths
Salt flakes
Juice 1 lemon


Bring chickpeas to boil in a small amount of water then remove from heat, keeping the water.
 Place potatoes in a saucepan of lightly salted cold water and add turmeric.
Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook potatoes until tender.
Drain well and cut into 2.5cm chunks, transfer to a large bowl. Cover to keep warm
Meanwhile preheat medium size saucepan over medium heat and add half the olive oil.
Gently saute onion and garlic until onion is transluscent and soft.
Add chickpeas and chaat masala, then turn up heat and cook for five to six minutes or until chickpeas are slightly coloured, stirring as you got to prevent burning. If they start to stick, add a little water chickpea water.
Add chickpea mix (including any chaat masala left in the pan) to the potato.
Add spinach, coriander, chilli, spring onion, salt, lemon juice and remaining olive oil and toss together. Check seasoning and serve.

** I used the following spices instead of chaat masala

3 tbsps cumin seeds
1 tbsp coriander seeds
1 &1/2 tsps fennel seeds
3 tbsps powdered black salt 

1 and a 1/2 tsps freshly ground black pepper 

1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1 and a 1/2 tsps ginger powder
1 tsp dried, powdered mint (I just used dried mint leaves)
1 and a 1/2 tsps ajwain/ carom seeds

Christmas Vegetables

This recipe comes courtesy of Jamie Oliver.

Herby roast potatoes, honeyed parsnips and orange carrots

Christmas Vegetables
serves: 6-8
1.5kg King Edward potatoes, peeled and halved
½ bulb of garlic, separated into cloves and crushed with the back of a knife
A small bunch of fresh rosemary, separated into sprigs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 tablespoons good-quality olive oil
50g dairy free butter (I used Nuttalex)
2kg parsnips, peeled
2 tablespoons agave syrup or honey equivelant
A small bunch of fresh thyme, leaves picked
1kg Chantenay carrots or, if you can't find any, use normal carrots cut at an angle into 2 inch pieces
zest of 1 orange


Preheat your oven to 220°C/425°F/gas 7. Parboil your potatoes for 10 minutes.
Drain in a colander and toss around to scruff up the outside of the spuds.
Toss with the garlic cloves, half of the rosemary, salt and pepper to taste, 4 tablespoons of the olive oil, and 30g of the butter in a large bowl.
Arrange in one layer in a roasting tin and roast for 45 minutes until golden.
For the parsnips, cut them in half lengthways, parboil for 10 minutes and drain.
Toss with the honey, thyme, salt and pepper to taste, 10g of the butter and 2 tablespoons of the oil.
 Lay the parsnips flat in a roasting tin in one layer, and roast for about 40 minutes until golden.
Put your carrots in a pan, cover with cold water and add a pinch of salt.
Boil for about 15 minutes or until cooked.
Meanwhile, finely chop the remaining rosemary and the orange zest together to mix.
Drain the cooked carrots and toss with the remaining butter. Season to taste and sprinkle with the orange zest and rosemary before serving.

Quinoa Tabouli

This is adapted from a couple of tabouli recipes and subsituted cracked wheat for quinoa.

Quinoa Tabouli


1 cup quinoa (cooked)
2 large tomatoes, finely chopped
Juice from one lemon
1 bunch chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
1/2 cup chopped fresh mint leaves
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup olive oil


Mix all ingredients throughly in a large bowl and serve.

NB: The picture has cucumber but it tastes nicer without it.

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Date Balls

This recipe comes courtesy of my mother in law, Becky. I'm not sure I make them right just yet but they still taste pretty good to me! My husband seems to think the secret is less butter and more rice crispies. This recipe makes about 50 balls.

Date Balls


113g of dairy free butter (I used Nuttalex)
1 cup (225g) caster sugar
450g chopped dates
2 cups rice crispies (I bought gluten free ones)
1 cup (225g) chopped pecans
Confectioners/powdered sugar for rolling (apparently our closest equivalent is icing sugar mixture but I used pure icing sugar which is apparently hard to find in the US)


In a medium saucepan boil sugar, butter and dates for 8mins.
Dates should melt into mixture.
Take off heat and stir through rice crispies and pecans.
Shape them into small balls and roll in confectioners sugar.
Place in cases and refridgerate to keep shape.
Serve at room temperature.

Cucumber Sandwiches

These were so good and so simple for a high tea or picnic. This amount will use one loaf of bread and will probably feed four people.

Cucumber Sandwiches


1 loaf of fresh bread, sliced
2 tubs Tofutti cream cheese
1/2 bunch chives
1 spring onion, (bulb only)
Salt and pepper (to taste)
2 cucumbers (peeled or not), sliced finely


I used a food processer with a slicing attachment to slice my cucumbers.
Then using the food processor with a blade whisked up the cream cheese, chives and spring onions and salt and pepper.
Spread a small amount of mixture onto both sides of the bread and place one layer of cumber.
Hold sandwich tight and cut off the crusts with a bread knife, then cute sandwich into three fingers.
You can make double layer sandwiches if you like.

Rubyfruit, Leura NSW

On our mini honeymoon in the Blue Mountains my husband (husband he he he) and I frequented Rubyfruit Bakery because besides generally being awesome it is the only 100% vegan place I knew of up there. I was so surprised at their range of food. I always thought they just did cakes but they had a full cafe menu and a lot of gluten free choice. They also had vegan products to sell.
Love this place so much! The ladies very kindly gave us from mini cheesecakes to take with us on our travels. Oh how I wish they would open a cafe in Sydney!

Gluten Free Choc-Raspberry Bliss Cake

Green Goddess Smoothie

Gluten Free Frittata with Rainbow Salad
and spicy chutney (which you can buy in store) 

Chocolate Milkshake

Tofu Scramble 

Chai Latte & Iced Chocolate 

Mini Baked Cheesecakes