Monday, 9 April 2012

Cookbook recipies

Over the past few weeks I have made a few things from my 2 newest cookbooks, the first is The Healthy Voyagers Global Vegan Kitchen, I made the No toad in the hole which was brilliant but I ate it before taking a photo, the second was Ethiopian Chickpea Stew from Everyday happy herbivore, this is simple but lovely:

I have also made Chickpeas romesco from VCON:

And Lentil & bacon pot o' stew from Hearty vegan meals for monster appetites (seen here with Cassava crisps & half a Goodlife wedge):

Easter food

For Easter this year instead of buying a meatless main I made my own using seitan:

And of course it wouldn't be Easter without lots and lots of chocolate, this is what I got:

My favourite? The dark bunny of course

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Product Reviews

Over the last 2 months I have been using 2 Clif bars as my post swim protein snack (bought as packs of 12), the first is Black Cherry Almond - this is really good, not too sweet with a good chocolate taste which makes it perfect as a morning snack. The second is Banana nut bread which out of the 2 is my favourite, its sweet bananary with nice chunks of dark chocolate in - I will definitely be buying this again!

The last product that I am reviewing is Teese Mozzarella, I bought this from and to be honest wish that I hadn't. It melts really well, but in my opinion is tasteless. It was £4.45 for 280 grams and  I can honestly say I won't be buying this again:

French Onion Soup

I have 54 Vegan cookbooks and try to use them, but inevitably end up reading through them wishing I was eating the food in them, but without having to put in the effort needed to cook. This year however I have decided to try and cook as much as possible from my cookbooks. So far I have been using Hearty Vegan meals for monster appetites (Mushroom soup, Chikin noodle soup, Lentil & bacon pot o'stew, Hearty breakfast bowl, Ham-ish Saucisses), Big Vegan (Sweet potato & edamame shepherds pie) and Vegan brunch (Italian feast sausages). This week I decided to try making French onion soup from Vegan comfort food by Alicia C. Simpson, I have never had French onion soup before but I really enjoyed this, it was sweet, oniony and deep, topped with baguette and melted Teese Mozzarella:

Sunday, 11 March 2012

Product reviews/vegan finds

So I ordered some groceries from Iherb in the states and managed to get some fantastic stuff - Marshmallow treats (gorgeous), Non dairy cheese crackers (likewise gorgeous), 2 types of fake chikin stock, soup, oatmeal and an omega three bar. Delivery was excellent and reasonable as well!

I also bought some Rice & Rice products from DietaryNeedsDirect. They are all lovely, the bar was OK but the pudding pots were really good (but very sweet). I would definitely recommend them to anyone who wants a break from Soya:

I took a self indulgent trip shopping in Liverpool and managed to find ColaCao & dark chocolate hazelnut spread from Lunya (a Catalonian Deli), liquid smoke from Delifonseca, black salt from Mattas, vegan custard creams from Tesco and a dark chocolate bunny (£2.19 from Home Bargains):

Food from March

Just a few of the culinary delights from the last 2 weeks:

Blueberry Maple Overnight Oats:

Hearty Breakfast Bowl (inspired by Hearty Vegan Meals for Monster Appetites):
This was really good, fried potatoes, scrambled tofu, home made fakon bits & salsa

Vegan Chikin Fu-Yung:

Hearty chikin noodle soup (from Hearty Vegan Meals for Monster Appetites):
Another excellent recipe from this book, will definitely be making this again.

Amy's Indian Vegetable Korma:
This was really great - its best cooked in the microwave though.

The Marks and Spencers Vegan option:
The only Vegan sandwich that I could find in M&S, it was quite good but not very filling.

Lasagne rolls with tofu ricotta (from Vegan Family Meals):
This was OK but had a unusual taste and took hours to make, I wont be making it again.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Sunday morning blues and some more product reviews

With pancake day coming up I thought I would sharpen my pancake making skills, so for breakfast Sunday morning I made pancakes from the Happy Herbivore cookbook, with blueberries and Provamel blueberry yogurt. They were delicious:

I have tried a couple of new products over the last week or two and all have been wonderful, the first was Fry's pepper steak style pie, it was lovely and had great pastry (although the pepper was quite hot!):

The second was Hippo Hyfryd white cacao coconut bar. Its coconut white chocolate truffle, wrapped in dark chocolate. After my first bite I thought "this isn't that great", but with each bite it got better and better and when I finished it I was craving more - its the closest thing to a vegan "Bounty" that I have tried so far and I will definitely be buying them again:

The third/fourth were the new Hazelnut/Almond milks from Alpro, I wasn't a big fan of the Almond (never have been a big fan of almond milks) but it is just as good (if not better) than its rivals and far cheaper, the Hazelnut however has become one of my favourite "milks" and will be making regular appearances in my kitchen. They both come in UHT and fresh versions, I tried UHT and they were both £1.59:

 Finally (and I have saved the best for last) Kara Chocolate Coconut Milk, this is just excellent beyond words. In my opinion - the nicest vegan chocolate milk there is:

Thursday, 16 February 2012

Vegan Quiche

Quiche is one of things that I was never really bothered about when I was  an omnivore, but since becoming Vegan I started missing it. One day I Googled "Vegan Quiche" and to my surprise found that it was quite easy to make one, so here is my recipe for Vegan quiche (originally inspired by and adapted from Fat Free Vegan's quiche):

Quiche (Single Serving)

The Filling:

110 Grams blended silken tofu (blend to a thick creamy consistency first, then weigh 110 grams)
5 Grams Nutrition yeast
5 Grams Corn flour
Splash of liquid Aminos (if you have any)
Good pinch Onion powder/granules (about 1/8 Tsp)
Good pinch Garlic powder/granules (about 1/8 Tsp)
Approx ¼ Tsp Turmeric
Salt and Pepper

Use a crust of your choice (I sometimes use a Tortilla as a quick and healthy alternative to pastry, or you can use pasty).

Choose whatever you want as a filling, depending on what filling you are using you will need approximately 160-180 grams of it.

A good example is:
30 Grams Soya Cheddar style cheese
30 Grams Soya Ham
50-60 Grams diced onion
50-60 Grams mushrooms

Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 4
Dice the mushrooms and onion, place in a parcel made of kitchen foil with a few tablespoons water poured in, then seal the parcel and cook in the oven for 10-15 minutes (you can also place the mushrooms, onions and water into a bowl covered with foil and cook that way).
This will precook the onions and mushrooms and reduces them in size, while they are cooking mix all the filling ingredients together, grate the cheese and cut the ham into thin slices.
Remove the parcel from the oven, drain the water off using a sieve and let the veg cool for a few minutes.
Mix the veg into the filling mixture followed by the cheese and ham.
Line a dish* with your crust and then spoon the filling in, using the back of a spoon to spread it evenly (you might want to make it slightly more shallow in the middle as this is the bit that will cook last).
Cook on gas mark 4 for about 1 hour or until it is golden yellow on top and cooked through – it should be firm but not too firm.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 10 minutes before eating.
It can also be cooled completely and kept in the fridge to eat later (it sometimes tasted better cooled), but if you have used a tortilla crust it will quickly become soggy.
*The dish I use is a rectangular dish and is 15cm X 11cm X5cm – but this is only about ¾ full when made with this recipe-you could make the filling before deciding what dish to make it with so you get a better idea of the size of dish needed.

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Product Reviews

I've tried a few new Vegan products this month, some good, some not so good:

Vantastic foods hazelnut & nougat spread:
Trying this straight from the jar I thought it tasted like blu-tack, but spread on hot toast or a warm cinnamon raisin bagel this spread is absolutely divine:

Sweet & Sara Smores:
I was really looking forward to trying this, but found it boring. I have a bit of a sweet tooth and for me, this just didn't deliver:

This is a small company based in the midlands who make chocolate eggs, hearts, truffles, bunnies etc. I bought 2 of their products (Dark chocolate vegan snickers type bar and a dark chocolate vegan creme egg)  from Lakeside Ethical Treats. Both were really good, the bar tasted more like a snickers than any other bar I have tried and the 'creme' in the egg was lovely. The only criticism is that the chocolate is grainy, I believe they use Plamil chocolate which is usually fantastic, so I think it might be that CWH have not tempered it after melting it. If they could remedy this, these would become some of my favourite products:

Labooko Soy white & dark:
This chocolate was lovely, it had a bit of a strange taste (possibly from using soya in it) but overall I really enjoyed them (especially the white - reminded me of a Caramac):

January's food

My blog is mostly about Vegan food, so here are a few of the delights that I have had this month:

Chocolate banana overnight oats:

Chocolate cherry overnight oats:

Porridge with Prewett's  breakfast oats:

Fake bacon & soya cheese quiche:

Salad, cous cous & white bean tempeh patties (from VWAV):

Corn pasta in a yoghurt mustard dressing, home made seitan and salad:

Home made seitan, mashed potatoes, kale, Brussels sprouts & gibletless gravy (from a Tofurky feast):


Sunday, 1 January 2012

New Year 2012

Well its 2012 and the  best way to start is with home made pea soup and a facon barm with Ketchup:

I have spent a wonderful day drinking with my family and planning some meals for 2012, followed by a delicious dinner of mashed potato, Tofurky, gibletless gravy, carrots, swede and sprouts:

Everyone out there have a wonderful new year and fingers crossed 2012 will be full of good vegan food and good times!