Monday, 30 March 2015

Easy Rocky Road

The best part about this is that you can use whatever ingredients you have in your house.

Easy Rocky Road


1 cup vegan mini marshmallows
1/2 cup nuts of choice (I used walnuts)
1/4 cup raisins
10oz vegan choc (I used half dark half milk)


Using a double broiler melt half of the chocolate.
Once melted transfer to a brownie/casserole dish lined with baking paper.
Sprinkle marshmallows, nuts and raisins to the melted chocolate.
Melt the remaining chocolate and pour over the top of the other ingredients.
Refrigerate for at least one hour.
Slice into small bit size pieces.

Monday, 23 March 2015

Vegan Meringue!!

Whoever decided to use chickpea water (now known as "aquafaba")is a genius but it makes sense because of the protein. I'm waiting for the new craze of just chickpea water in a can to start - someone will make a lot of money! Great for just meringue cookies like this or for Pavlova and Eton Mess!
Note: this doesn't work with fresh chickpea water, I tried and failed with water that had had chickpeas soaking for two days.

Vegan Meringue


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


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 or pipe onto baking paper on a cookie sheet, you can do small meringues or one large sheet for pavlova.
Bake for 2-2 1/2 hours. It's ready once top and bottom are hard.
Wait till cooled completely before removing from baking paper..

Sunday, 22 March 2015

We Made A Tee-pee!

So not on a vegan note but on a family note...we made a teepee! Technically it's for the kids but it looks so comfortable I think I might sneak in there when they're not home ;)
This was a fairly easy project for around $60 - we got plain duck cloth on sale.

You need;

5.5 yards x 3 yards
5-6x Wood planks - 9' tall
Sewing machine/fabric scissors
Optional Extras; tarp, paint, pillows, blankets


We started with one 1 piece of 11 x 2 yard piece of plain duck cloth and cut it in half down the middle.

Next I sewed the two 5.5 yard pieces together and lay out flat. mark down the middle of the piece. Using one of the planks of wood, drill a hole about 9" down on all planks. Lay wood down in the middle line of the material with the hole on the long edge. Start marking around to make a semi-circle on one side of the material.

Fold the material in half on the fold line and cut around the circle with fabric scissors.

Next either hem or using a seam stitch sew the round raw edges to prevent fraying. The sides should have selvage so should not need hemming.

Next lay the material out flat and in the center of the flat edge mark two button holes on each side. This will be for the rope to feed through and attach to the wooden plank.

Attach all your planks together in a teepee shape and feed the rope through and tie to hold in place.
Next wrap the material - round edge along the ground - around the planks and mark three button holes.

Sew all the marked button holes.
The top two are for feeding through the plank as an anchor, the bottom 6 holes are to hold the teepee together at the front.

Technically now your teepee is ready! 

We painted circle patterns on the material but tracing cups and plates and then using some old house paints samples we had left over from when we made a birdhouse. We had paint on our hands so we put hand prints on as well.


We covered the floor with tarp, then got some outdoor cushions and blankets from a thrift store.

Sunday, 15 March 2015

Easy Pasta & Potato Bake

This is an easy recipe and a crowd pleaser using what you have in your home.

Easy Pasta & Potato Bake
Serves 4-6


400g uncooked pasta, I used brown rice rigati (shells, macaroni, spiral or penne)
400g potatoes
120g vegan cheddar
120g vegan mozarella
1 cup vegan Bechamel sauce (white sauce)
1 tsp salt.


Cook the pasta as per packet instructions.
Boil potatoes till soft inside but not falling apart (peel first if you like).
These two steps can be done the night before and left in the refrigerator.
Preheat oven to 400F and prepare a large oven proof casserole dish with a drizzle of oil or vegan butter.
Prepare the white sauce, adding the extra tsp salt for taste.
Slice the cooked potato into rounds.
Place a layer of cooked pasta at the bottom of the dish.
Add a layer of potato rounds.
Pour over some white sauce and sprinkle a layer of both cheeses.
Repeat the layering steps until you are out of ingredients - saving a little bit of white sauce and cheese for the top.
Top with a bit of white sauce and a layer of cheeses.
Bake in the oven, covered for 20-30 minutes, until cheeses look like they are melting.
Uncover and bake for a further 10 minutes to get the top melted and slightly browned.
Serve as a main or side.

Pistachio & White Chocolate Muffins with Caramel Drizzle

Pistachio & White Chocolate Muffins with Caramel Drizzle
Makes 12


2 cups gluten free flour or baking mix
3 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 vegan sugar
1 egg replacer, as per packet instructions
1 cup non-dairy milk (I used cashew)
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup pistachios, crushed
1/2 - 1 cup vegan white chocolate chips


Preheat oven to 400F and grease muffin try or line with muffin papers. (I recommend using muffin papers, especially if you are using gluten free flour which tends to be crumbly and stick to the trays.)
In a medium bowl mix the flour, baking power, salt and sugar.
Make a well in the centre of the dry mix.
In a separate small bowl prepare your egg replacer then whisk in your milk, vanilla extract and vegetable oil.
Pour mixture into the well of dry ingredients.
Whisk well by hand.
Add in the pistachios and white chocolate chips.
Pour evenly into your muffin tray and bake for 20mins.
Once out of the oven allow to cool before removing from tray and then drizzle with caramel sauce.

Vanilla Caramel Drizzle


1 cup vegan icing/powdered sugar
2 Tbls non-dairy milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 Tbls vanilla sugar (if you have some, otherwise ordinary vegan sugar)


Add all ingredients to a small saucepan and whisk to combine well.
Heat on medium-high until mixture starts to bubble boil and then turn heat down to low-medium.
Continue to whisk until mixture has the consistency of caramel. Take of stove immediately.**
Using a spoon drizzle over muffins and allow to cool hard.

**Note, the first time I did this I left it too long and the mixture crystallized but if you just add a bit more milk and repeat the steps you can save it.

Sunday, 8 March 2015

Homemade Ketchup

Another amazing recipe from DIY Natural. I've been wanting to make my own ketchup (tomato sauce for my Aussie friends!) for ages since it goes super fast in our house and I'm sick of high fructose corn syrup being in everything. I like this ketchup because it tastes more like the organic farmers market type sauces. Family loved it.

Homemade Ketchup
(Makes about 1½ cups)


6-7 ounce can organic tomato paste
½ cup distilled white vinegar
¼ cup pure maple syrup
¼ cup filtered water
1 teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon onion powder
⅛ teaspoon garlic powder


Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium high heat.
Begin whisking to blend ingredients until smooth.
Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, stirring frequently and scraping around sides of the saucepan with a spatula.
Simmer until desired thickness is achieved (could take about 20-25 minutes or more).
Remove from heat and allow to cool.
Transfer to a jar, cap tightly, and refrigerate.
In the fridge this ketchup will last at least a month.
You can preserve this recipe using the hot water bath method just boil for 15-20 minutes.

Friday, 6 March 2015

Vegan Alfredo Sauce

This is simple and delicious...definitely a family pleaser! Original recipe from Freak Food Gourmet.

Vegan Alfredo Sauce


1/4 cup vegan margarine
1 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk
1 Package vegan mozzarella shreds (I used Daiya)
1-2 cloves garlic


In a medium saucepan heat the margarine and garlic on a medium heat.
Stir in the almond milk and set heat on medium-high.
Once milk has heated up stir in the mozzarella shreds.
Stir until cheese has melted in. I like to use a whisk once the cheese has melted.
Continue to still until thicken - this should happen shortly after bubbles start appearing.

Turn heat down to low and add pepper to taste.
Serve with your favourite pasta!

Thursday, 5 March 2015

BBQ Shredded "Pork"

Perfect for vegan pork buns, salads or sandwiches! Recipe from Alien's Day Out.

BBQ Shredded "Pork"


1 540g can young green jackfruit in brine
1Tbs olive oil
1 tsp sesame oil
1 medium onion, sliced long
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 carrot, chopped
1 Tbs sugar or rice syrup
1 1/2 Tbs soy sauce
1 1/2 Tbs hoisin
1/2 Tbs minced ginger
1 tsp Chinese 5-spice powder*
salt and pepper to taste


Rinse the jackfruit thoroughly to get rid of the brine, Cut out the tough core.
Use your fingers to shred any larger chunks of jackfruit.
In a large pan or pot, heat up the olive oil over medium-high heat and then add the onions, garlic, and ginger. Sautee for a a few minutes, until onions are starting to get clear.
Add the jackfruit pieces and carrots and continue to saute for another few minutes.
Add the remaining ingredients and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to make sure it doesn't burn on the bottom.
Continue until all the sauces and flavors have been absorbed into the jackfruit and the veggies are fully cooked.

Taste and season with more salt and pepper, to taste.

Turn off the heat and let it rest in the pot for a bit so the flavors can settle in more, before serving.

*Chinese Five Spice;
Blend the following ground spices:
1 1/2 tbsp star anise
2 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
1 1/2 tsp cassia or cinnamon
1/2 tsp Szechwan pepper
1/2 tsp cloves
optional: 1/2 teaspoon white pepper and/or 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger.
Both will give added bite and depth of flavor

Monday, 2 March 2015

Tofu Korma

This is my husband's recipe that he adapted from something he saw on Youtube. You can also add vegetables such as cooked chucks of potato, cooked sliced carrots or peas to this dish.

Tofu Korma


Curry Base Ingredients**
3 onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tsp ginger, grated
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (none if you don't like it spicy)
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp curry powder
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp ground cardamon
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup tinned tomatoes
1 1/2 Tbls olive oil

Korma Ingredients
1 block of firm tofu (or a cup of vegan chicken strips)
1 1/2 cup of base
1/2 cup coconut cream
1/4 cup coconut or almond milk
2 tsp sugar
1 Tbls raisins


Cover onions, garlic & ginger with water in a medium pan, bring to boil and simmer, covered for 20 mins.
Add rest of base ingredients and let simmer, covered for another 10 minutes.
Cool and blend with hand blender or food processor.
While base ingredients are simmering, pan fry the tofu (or vegan chicken) so that they are brown on both sides until browned.
Pour base over the tofu and let simmer for a minute.
Pour in the coconut cream and milk and mix well.
Add raisins and sugar and simmer for 10 minutes, covered.
Serve with basmati rice and papadums!

**Note - this recipe makes more base than you need for the korma but it can be frozen.