Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Vegan Fried Eggs

This recipe is from the ever innovative Mouthwatering Vegan, (aka Miriam Sorrell). I didn't feel like it tasted that much like fried eggs in terms of the egg white but the yoke part was pretty good and I imagine it making a delicious egg salad! I would have like my yoke to be runnier but I can try again later! Delicious with vegan Hollandaise sauce (pictured)!


Vegan Fried Eggs

Ingredients

Yolk

2 heaped Tbsp dried instant mashed potatoes
7 Tbsp  (105 mL) hot water
1 tsp nutritional yeast
¼ tsp turmeric
¼ tsp kala namak salt, otherwise known as black salt
¾ tsp Orgram egg replacer (or Ener-G in the US)
1 tsp vegan margarine
1 tsp sunflower or canola oil (not olive oil, as that would alter the taste)

Egg White

1 x 349g(12.3 oz) pack of firm silken tofu - you may wish to get the packet of tofu and place in the freezer for half an hour prior to opening it and cutting it up – makes for a firmer cut.
Oil for frying


Method

Make up your mashed potato mix with the water, add margarine and the other ingredients including the oil, and mash using a fork until consistency resembles hard-boiled egg yolk,  but it should be thick in consistency.
Then spoon out half of the mixture into a separate bowl, and set aside.
Using a round cutter (as big as will fit in the tofu), cut through the centre of the tofu block, so you should be left with a cylinder around 2” thick – this will yield around 4 egg whites.
Cut this into 4 equal slices with a very sharp knife.
Next, with a smaller round cutter, press out the centre of the ‘egg white’, which will leave space for your ‘yolk’.
Now heat up some oil in a non-stick pan.
Meanwhile, take 1 teaspoon of the egg yolk (make sure it has cooled down), roll it in your palms, then flatten it slightly.
Then, using the smaller cutter, cut out the ‘yolk’ circle, which will fit inside the centre of the ‘egg white’ perfectly. But don’t place it in there yet at this stage.
Gently place your egg white in the hot oil, one at a time, in and shallow fry it until golden around the edges on both sides.
Now flip it, and place your egg yolk in the middle to fit the puzzle so to speak, and press down a little with a teaspoon.
Meanwhile add some hot water to the mix in your 2nd ‘egg yolk’ bowl, and stir all the time until you reach a smooth egg yolk consistency.
Using a small teaspoon, pour a tiny amount of this in the centre of the egg yolk, but don’t agitate it. Then spoon some of the oil it is frying in over the top of the yolk, to seal the top, and sprinkle on some salt and pepper.
Gently bring it out from the pan onto your toast, or your plate, and enjoy alone, or with your favourite sauce.

Saturday, 26 December 2015

Christmas Dinner - 2015

With just the 2 of us home for Christmas this year there was no point making a bunch of food. However, I still like to eat and at 31 weeks pregnant so does baby, plus I love leftovers!! ;)

Here's what I made for Christmas Day dinner;



Epic Nut Roast


Christmas Roast Vegetables




Mushroom Gravy


Vegan KFC Coleslaw


Potato & Squash Mash



Gluten Free Fruit Mince Tarts



Poppy Seed Log (Beigli - a Hungarian Xmas favorite)




Gluten Free Fruit Mince Pies

A must for any Commonwealth Christmas! Original recipe by Jamie Oliver. I found I had to stretch the pastry very thin to make the 12 pies so next time i think I would use 1.5 of the recipe. Had more than enough fruit mix though. They were delicious!


Gluten Free Fruit Mince Pies

Ingredients

Pastry;
75 g rice flour
40 g tapioca , or gluten-free flour
40 g chickpea flour
70 g vegan butter , chilled, cubed
4 tbsp vegan sugar
1 vanilla pod , split, seeds scraped
1 lemon , or orange, the grated zest of

Filling;
1 banana , mashed
70 ml fresh orange juice
1 good pinch of grated nutmeg
1 good pinch of allspice
1 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tbsp golden syrup
170 g raisins
80 g dried apricots
80 g dried sour cherries
80 g dried cranberries
80 g dried blueberries
2 tbsp brandy , (optional)


Method

To make the fruit filling, pop all the ingredients into a bowl, mix well, and leave covered in the fridge overnight for the flavours to develop.
To make the pastry, mix all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl, then use your fingers to rub in the butter to form breadcrumbs.
Mix in the vanilla seeds and lemon zest.
Add 2 tablespoons cold water to the mix, then quickly and gently work it into a dough.
Wrap in clingfilm and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Remove the pastry from the fridge.
Place a large sheet of greaseproof paper in front of you, put the chilled dough on top, place another sheet on top and thinly roll out the pastry (this will stop you needing any more flour).
Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4, grease your pie tin well and take the fruit out of the fridge.
Cut out 12 pastry circles, big enough for your tin and 12 star lids (if you don’t have a star cutter, just make round lids).
Place a round in each of the pie moulds, before filling with the fruit and topping with a lid.


Brush with a little milk to help them colour.
Bake for 15–20 minutes, until golden.


Allow to cool before taking out of the tins. Once completely cooled, dust with icing sugar.




Epic Nut Roast

Adapted to vegan/gluten free from a Jamie Oliver recipe. It was a little spicy, I liked it by my husband didn't due to the fruit.


Epic Nut Roast

Ingredients 

100 g quinoa
150 g onion squash
1 onion
2 cloves of garlic
2 sticks of celery
olive oil
200 g tinned or vac-packed chestnuts (can be substituted with hazelnuts or pecans)
2 sprigs of fresh rosemary
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 pinch of sweet smoked paprika
1 teaspoon dried oregano
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
2 large field mushrooms
40 g vegan butter, plus extra for greasing
1 lemon
60 g fresh GF breadcrumbs
80 g dried cranberries
100 g dried apricots
100 g mixed nuts, such as walnuts, cashews, hazelnuts and brazil nuts
4x vegan egg replacer

For the salsa rossa picante:
2 fresh red chillies
1 stick cinnamon
2 cloves of garlic
1 small onion
½ bunch of fresh thyme
2 x 400 g tins of plum tomatoes
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
40 g vegan Cheddar cheese

Method

Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF/gas 4. Grease a 1-litre loaf tin with a little butter, then line with greaseproof paper.

Cook the quinoa according to the packet instructions, then set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, halve the squash, scoop out the seeds, then chop the flesh into rough 1cm chunks (you don’t need to peel the skin).
Peel and roughly chop the onion.
Peel and finely slice the garlic, then trim and roughly chop the celery.
Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat, then add the chopped vegetables and crumble in the chestnuts.
Pick in the rosemary leaves, discarding the stalks, then toss well.
Add the cayenne, paprika and oregano.
Season, stir well, then reduce the heat to medium-low.
Cook for around 15 minutes, or until softened slightly.
Meanwhile, roughly chop the mushrooms, then add to the pan for the final 5 minutes of cooking.
Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the butter and grate in the zest from half the lemon.
Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, then stir in the cooled quinoa, breadcrumbs, dried fruit and nuts (feel free to bash up some of the larger nuts if you prefer a less chunky consistency).
Crack in the eggs, then stir well to combine.
Pop the mixture into the prepared loaf tin, then place in the hot oven for 45 to 50 minutes, or until cooked through and set.
When there’s about 30 minutes to go, make the salsa rossa.
Place a roasting tray on the stove over a medium-low heat. (I didn't have a roasting tray suitable for the stove top so I use a pan and then transferred it to a roasting pan for the oven.)
Prick the chillies and add to the tray with a lug of olive oil and the cinnamon stick.
Peel and finely slice the garlic, peel and slice the onion into 8 wedges, then add them to the tray.
Pick in most of the thyme leaves (save a few sprigs to one side), pour in the plum tomatoes and 1 tin’s worth of water, then stir well, breaking up the tomatoes with the back of a spoon.
Season with salt and stir in the balsamic vinegar, then bring to the boil.
Reduce the heat and simmer for around 20 minutes, or until thickened and reduced.


Once the salsa is ready, take 1 chilli out of the tray, then carefully halve, deseed and roughly chop it before returning it to the tray.
Loosen the salsa with a splash of water, if needed, then pick out the extra chilli and cinnamon stick and put to one side.
Remove the nut roast from the oven, then carefully turn it out, peeling away the greaseproof paper.



Pop the nut roast into the tray and grate over the cheese.


Place the cinnamon stick, chilli and reserved thyme sprigs on top, then return it to the oven for 10 to 15 minutes, or until bubbling and golden.
Serve with mashed potato and seasonal greens.



Saturday, 19 December 2015

Potato Mushroom Masala

This recipe comes from Veg Recipes of India



Potato Mushroom Masala

Ingredients

200 grams white button mushrooms, sliced
2 medium potatoes, chopped in small cubes
2 medium sized tomatoes, quartered
1 medium sized onion, halved or quartered
18 cashews
1 tbsp chopped coriander/cilantro leaves
2 cups water for blanching
2 tbsp oil
½ tsp caraway seeds or ½ tsp cumin seeds
6 cloves
2 green cardamoms
1 cinnamon stick
1 single mace strand
1 tsp ginger-garlic paste or ½ inch ginger, grated
5 garlic cloves, crushed to a paste in a mortar-pestle
1.25 cups water
¼ tsp turmeric powder
½ tsp red chili powder
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp dry fenugreek leaves, crushed
salt as required


Method 

Put tomatoes, onion and cashews in a heat proof bowl and pour over the 2 cups of hot water.
Cover and blanch these ingredients for about 25 to 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, rinse or wipe dry the mushrooms. slice or chop them. rinse, peel and chop the potatoes in small cubes. keep aside.
After cashews are blanched, drain and chop the tomatoes roughly.
Add the tomatoes along with their juices, blanched onions, cashews in a grinder or blender jar with 1 tbsp chopped coriander leaves.
Without adding any water, grind to a smooth fine paste. Keep aside.
Heat 2 tbsp oil in a pan. add the whole spices and saute till the spices crackle and become fragrant.
Then add the sliced or chopped mushrooms, stir very well and begin to saute.
Continue to saute on a medium flame till all the water from mushrooms dries up.
Then with the spoon, bring the mushrooms towards one side of the pan and add ginger-garlic paste.
Stir in the same place, and saute the ginger-garlic paste till the raw aroma of ginger and garlic goes away.
Now add the potato cubes. stir and saute for 2 minutes.
Then add turmeric powder, red chili powder and coriander powder and mix the spice powders with the rest of the ingredients.
Add the ground paste. stir and mix well.
Saute for 5 to 6 minutes on a low to medium flame or till you see some oil releasing from the sides and add salt as per taste.
Add 1.25 cups water, depending on the gravy consistency you want, you can add less or more water and stir very well.
Cover and simmer the gravy on a low to medium flame till the potatoes are cooked through which takes about 12 to 15 minutes. d
Do check at intervals and if the gravy becomes too thick, then add some water.
Add 1 tsp of dry fenugreek leaves and stir.
If you do not have dry fenugreek leaves, then skip it or as a substitute you can also add a light pinch of fenugreek seeds powder.
Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and with your favorite Indian bread, rice and poppadoms.

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Homemade Xmas Gifts - 2015

Just a quick look at the homemade gifts I sent to family and friends this year;



Here's some more inspiration from my Pinterest page...


Becky's Christmas Jelly

This easy but delicious recipe comes courtesy of my mother-in-law. It is great on vegan cheese & crackers, vegan faux meats and on toast :)


Becky's Christmas Jelly

Ingredients

7 cups vegan sugar
3 cups cranberry juice
1/4 tsp ground clove
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1 cup port
2x 3oz packets of fruit pectin


Method

Combine sugar, juice & spices in a large pot.
Bring to boil.
Stir to dissolve all sugar.
Boil for 1 min.
Add in port and pectin.
Skim with a spoon if needed.
Pour into sterilized jam jars.

Thursday, 3 December 2015

Wild Rice Salad with Cranberries & Walnuts

This recipe is from Veggie Primer and the dressing is from Forks Over Knives. I ended up using half wild rice and half black rice. I dried the cranberries myself in my dehydrator because I couldn't find any pre-made that didn't contain sugar :(


Wild Rice Salad with Cranberries & Walnuts

Ingredients

4 cups cooked wild brown rice mix (2 cups uncooked)
½ medium red onion
2 stalks of celery
2 packed cups fresh baby kale (I used baby spinach)
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup dried cranberries
Magical Applesauce Vinaigrette (recipe below)

Method

If you do not have cooked rice on hand, cook rice in advance, fluff with fork and allow to cool.
Prepare Magical Applesauce Vinaigrette.
Place onion in a food processor fitted with the S blade and pulse until onion is finely chopped.
Scrape onion into a bowl and repeat the process with the celery and baby kale, separately.
Add walnuts and cranberries to chopped vegetables and stir until well combined.
Scape cooled rice into chopped vegetables with a fork (to help separate the grains) and stir until well combine. You may find it helpful to scrape and stir ⅓ of the rice at a time.
Add vinaigrette and diced apples to the salad, stir and serve or refrigerate for 1-2 days for later use.


Magical Applesauce Vinaigrette

Ingredients

1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
2 tsp mild miso
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
4 Tbls apple cider vinegar
2 Tbls balsamic vinegar
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 Tbls pure maple syrup
1/2 rounded teaspoon sea salt (or more)
Freshly ground black pepper


Method

Place the applesauce, miso, cumin, cinnamon, apple cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar, mustard, maple syrup, and salt and pepper in an immersion blender with a deep cup, and blend until very smooth. I just whisked it by hand and it came out fine.

Vegan Items - December 2015

Here's some vegan items that I've newly discovered, probably some old but I don't get out much so...
Everything I post is vegan and gluten free - I also never buy products that contain unsustainable palm oil.

To start us of in the Holiday spirit here is Sjaak's Vegan Snowman which are snowman shaped chocolates filled with crunchy peanut butter filling. SO delicious I ate them all before I could get any photos...sorry! I got these at the Natural Candy Store. Great range on their online store of vegan Christmas candy!


I found these Daiya vegan mac n' cheeses in Harmon's Grocery and I think they are pretty good for a 10 minute packet mix! This picture is slightly false representation because I've actually not tried the Alfredo one yet. I bought it but so far have only tried the Cheddar (pictured on the right) and the Cheddar with vegetables.


Daiya again with some Jalapeno Havarti Style vegan cheese that I found at Good Earth Natural Foods. I really liked this and it was exceptionally good on Mary's Gone Crackers Garlic and Onion Thins.


I am super addicted to these Coconut Bliss Salted Caramel in Chocolate ice-creams I found at Good Earth Natural Foods, I have only seen the one flavor (the other is Almond) but they are so decadent. I hate that there are only 3 in the pack but anyway Remind me of a less intense Magnum Ego.



I bought these Dandies Pumpkin Marshmallows because it was the only flavor the Natural Candy Store had in stock but I have to say I really enjoyed them, they turned my cocoa into pumpkin spice cocoa - delicious!!


I bought this Eli's Big Dream Bar, by Sjaak's (similar to Snickers) Natural Candy Store to try and it was so amazing, I was sad I had bought only one. I can't wait to try the other flavors. After discovering GoMax bars use unsustainable palm oil I thought my chocolate bar days were over but my faith has been restored!


The lovely people at Naked Nutrition sent me these samples of their vegan protein powder and I really liked them, I would love to try the peanut butter one! Here's my post on the smoothies I made with them.


I am so in love with Organicville's BBQ Sauce - totally organic and vegan. I had tried Annie's and didn't not like it but this is my BBQ sauce for life! So good! Just found it in my local supermarket.


I recently discovered Enjoy Life's Soft Baked Cookies - O.M.G! So amazing! I contacted them and confirmed that they use vegan sugar in their products. I've only had the Snickerdoodle (which was like a mini donut) and the Double Chocolate but I could love to try the others. In fact they have a large selection of  soft and hard cookies that I never new about! Just found them at my local supermarket.


I found this Amy's Indian Vegetable Korma at my local supermarket and although it wasn't marked "vegan" I checked the ingredients three times and couldn't find anything suspicious. It was ok, kind of an average microwave meal but good for last minute lunch or dinner emergencies!


I discovered these Dr. Praeger's California Veggie Burgers at Good Earth Natural Foods and I have long loved the kale burgers. These were pretty good  but had a more floury taste than the kale burgers and keep together better.



My BFF got me onto Earth Science Tea Tree & Lavender Natural Deodorant and I love it - have not had a stinky moment since I started using it! Most of their products are vegan, a couple contain beeswax.





Monday, 30 November 2015

Candy Cane Chocolate Fudge

This recipe comes from Woman In Real Life, it was amazinly delicious, I made it for Xmas gifts but I really wanted to eat the whole thing myself! ;)


Candy Cane Chocolate Fudge

Ingredients

6 Tbls vegan butter (I used Earth Balance)
3 1/2 cups vegan icing/confectioners/powdered sugar
1/2 cup sifted cocoa powder
1/2 tsp peppermint flavor (I used 1/8-1/4 tsp peppermint essential oil - food grade)
1/4 cup soy milk (I used flax milk)
2 vegan candy canes (I used TruJoy brand)


Method

Line a loaf pan with parchment paper.
Place candy canes in a ziplock bag, squeeze out the air before sealing.
Crush the canes using a mallet or rolling pin.
Put butter, sugar, cocoa, peppermint and soy milk in a double broiler over simmering water and stir until smooth. I used a whisk towards the end to get rid of the bumps.
Add more milk if needed.
Once mixture is smooth quickly pour into prepared tin.
Sprinkle with the crushed candy canes and press in gently.
Chill in fridge over night.
Cut into slices or squares.


Sunday, 29 November 2015

Spinach, Ricotta & Sweet Potato Lasagne



Spinach, Ricotta & Sweet Potato Lasagne

Ingredients

1 sweet potato
1 garlic clove,crushed
1 large onion, chopped
3 Tbls vegan butter or vegetable oil
300g young spinach or thawed frozen spinach
400g tub vegan ricotta (I used Tofutti)
3 tbsp vegan Parmesan
2 cups marinara sauce (I just used seasoned crushed tomatoes that I had frozen)
1/2 cup vegan grated cheese (optional)
Béchamel Sauce
Salt & Pepper to season
Lasagne slats, softened in some warm water


Method

Heat the oven to 375°F/190°C.
Cook sweet potato wrapped in paper towel in microwave for 5-10 minutes, or until soft through.
Let cool.
Cook the onion in butter with the crushed garlic on a medium heat until softened.
Chop the spinach finely.
Add the spinach to the onion and cook until wilted.
Mix the ricotta with the Parmesan, then stir the onion and spinach into the ricotta mix and season with salt and pepper.
Once sweet potatoes are cool enough to touch remove skin, mash and stir through in the ricotta mixture.

Start with a ladle of the marinara sauce on the bottom of the baking dish/tin.
Add one layer of lasagne slats.
Spoon one layer of the ricotta mix onto the pasta and smooth down.
Add a ladle of marinara sauce.

Repeat these steps until the last lasagne slats have been used.
Add any left over filling to the top.
Spoon the Béchamel sauce to the top layer and sprinkle with vegan cheese if using.


Bake in the oven for 40 mins.
If you want it to look presentable then let cool down before cutting and serving (and reheating).
If you don't care about the presentation then dig in!




Friday, 27 November 2015

Vegan Pavlova

Pavlova is a traditional Australian (or New Zealand depending on who you ask - there is a long running feud over who really invented it) involving meringue, whipped cream and fresh fruit. It is served as a dessert for any occasion but usually served on Australia Day or Christmas Day. This is my vegan version :)

I ended up using pomegranate seeds instead of passion fruit because I couldn't find any this time of year. Apparently you can get them on Amazon so I shall be doing that next year!

I had a bit of a fail with the meringue - it tasted amazing and came out exactly as you'd expect but it stuck to the baking paper so I ended up having to pull it apart and serve it crushed on the bottom layer instead of one large piece but everyone LOVED it so it was still a big hit! Kind of a combination of pavlova and Eton Mess!


Vegan Pavlova

Ingredients

Liquid from 2x 16 ounce can of chickpeas
1 1/2 cup of vegan powered/icing sugar
1/2 tsp of cream of tartar
3 tsp of pure vanilla extract
Vegan whipped cream (I used Soyatoo but you can do it yourself with coconut cream).
Fresh fruit (traditionally strawberries, blueberries, kiwi fruit and passion fruit)


Method

Preheat oven to 100C/200F.
In a large mixing bowl add the cream of tarter to the brine and mix with a whisk attachment on a high speed until combined. Turn off the mixer and add the sugar and vanilla and mix on a high speed for ten to fifteen minutes or until the meringue forms stiff peaks.
Seriously this takes a while so don't get discouraged if after 5 mins your mix still looks like clear yellow goo, it will happen - it just takes patience!
Spoon onto baking paper on a cookie sheet.


Bake for 2-2 1/2 hours. It's ready once top and bottom are hard.
Wait till cooled completely before continuing.
Transfer the pavlova to a serving plate or keep in baking dish.
Top with the whipped cream and fresh fruit.