Tag: Recipe

Vegan Lentil Lasagna

For as long as I can remember Lasagna has been my favourite dish. I love a good vegetable lasagna packed full of whatever the season has to offer, but lentils provide this beaut more of a meaty texture. This dish is packed full of flavour, and a tofu topping means you don’t need to faff about with a bechamel and worry about lumpy sauce = win! 


Vegan Lasagna with lentils and kale
Serves 4-6

1/2 tbsp coconut oil
1 large onion
2 garlic cloves
200g puy lentils (soaked overnight if possible)
400g tin chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp oregano
1/2 tbsp thyme
1 tspn ground cinnamon
2 tbsp tomato puree
400ml vegetable stock
80g kale
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
Salt and pepper
6 – 8 lasagne sheets (depending on the size of your dish)

For the topping:
1 block of firm tofu (drained)
3 tbsp pine nuts (keep an extra few to sprinkle on top)
80g spinach (washed and dried)
Salt and pepper
A few cherry tomatoes
A few basil leaves

  • In a large saucepan, melt the coconut oil on a medium heat.
  • Chop the onion and garlic and add to the pan and cook for five minutes.
  • Rinse the lentils and add to the pan, along with the chopped tomatoes, oregano, thyme, cinnamon and tomato puree. Cook for five minutes.
  • Gradually add the vegetable stock, along with the kale, maple syrup and apple cider vinegar. Cook for about 25 minutes until the lentils are cooks. Season with plenty of pepper and a little salt.
  • Meanwhile in food processor, add the drained block of tofu, the pine nuts and spinach and blend until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.
  • In a large oven-proof dish add half of the lentil and kale filling and spread evenly. Lay the lasagne sheets covering the filling.
  • Spoon half the tofu mixture and spread evenly across the pasta sheet. 
  • Spread the remaining lentil mix over and top with more pasta sheets and the rest of the tofu mixture.
  • Top with sliced cherry tomatoes, pine nuts and a few basil leaves.
  • Bake in a pre-heated oven at 180C for thirty minutes.
  • Serve with some tasty salad leaves.

Enjoy!

Veronica x

 

Vegan pancakes with lemon and sugar

I love pancakes, and I LOVE LOVE LOVE pancake day. These vegan pancakes are so easy to make and you definitely don’t need any eggs to make them! Just make sure you’ve got your favourite plantbased milk and flour in the cupboard and you’re all set to get flipping!

When I was growing up we pretty much saved our pancake eating to once a year. If you follow me on Instagram you’ll see that pancakes are more of a weekly thing in my house now, I tend to mix the toppings up a bit depending what I’ve got in the house. But sometimes you can’t beat a traditional crepe style, doused in lemon and sugar. If you’re looking for more of an american style thick pancake recipe then this, this or this might be up your street. I’ve got your pancake needs covered this year don’t you worry!

Pancakes with lemon and sugar
Makes 6

200g plain flour
400ml plantbased milk (I used oat milk)
A pinch of salt
1 tspn vanilla extract (optional)
25g vegan margarine
2 lemons
2 tbsp caster sugar

  • In a large mixing bowl, add the flour and milk and whisk using a balloon whisk until you’ve got a smooth batter.
  • Add the salt and vanilla extract and stir through. Leave to sit for thirty minutes but only if you’ve got time.
  • Meanwhile, heat your frying pan on a medium heat and melt a little (not all) of the margarine.
  • When the pan is hot, ladle the batter into the pan and cook for a few minutes, flip the pancake to cook the other side. Add a little extra margarine before each pancake.
  • Serve with plenty of lemon juice and caster sugar. 

Or you could even melt some dark chocolate, and serve with coconut yoghurt. Or cook some apples and sprinkle with cinnamon. The list is pretty much endless when it comes to pancakes!

Enjoy

Veronica x

Banana and Chocolate Bread [vegan]

Pretty much everyday I get hungry around 11am, depending on what I’ve had for breakfast. I always need some kind of mid-morning snack that’s going to keep me going until lunchtime and this banana and chocolate bread has currently won me over in the snackosphere.

I’ve not been shy on the chocolate chunks, if something is going to have chocolate in the title then I’m going to want to get a massive hit of chocolateyness, and this doesn’t disappoint. I even took a little jar of nut butter into work and smothered it on a slice – I was winning in life at that point. Later in the day I definitely wasn’t. It turned out I’d not put the lid back on that blommin’ jar properly and got home to discover I was half a jar down and one tote bag was totally ruined. I would definitely put this catastrophe into a middle class problem type meme.

Banana and Chocolate Bread

3 ripe bananas
1tbsp maple syrup
1 flax egg (1 tbsp flax seed, 3 tbsp water mixed together)
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tspn vanilla extract
100ml plant based milk
200g spelt flour
50g self-raising flour
1 tspn baking powder
1/2 tspn bicarbonate of soda
125g dark chocolate 

  • Pre-heat the oven to 180C, grease and line an 2lb loaf tin (mediumish size).
  • In a glass, mix together the flax seed and water and set aside for a few minutes.
  • Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, mash up the bananas. Add all the wet ingredients – maple syrup, vegetable oil, vanilla extract, plant milk and the flax seed egg. Stir together.
  • Add the flours, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and stir until all mixed together.
  • Chop the chocolate – I like mine quite chunky so don’t over chop, stir into the mixture.
  • Pour the mixture into the loaf tin, and pop in the oven for 45 – 50 minutes until a skewer comes out clean when you insert it.
  • Remove from the tin and leave to cool on a wire rack. I like to cut a slice and eat it whilst it is still warm, after all that’s when the chocolate is at its best!

If there is one thing we’ve learnt from this….screw those lids on people!

Veronica x

Roasted Beetroot and Garlic Houmous

A super speedy recipe to liven up your houmous. You can’t beet some roasted beetroot AND garlic, and this makes a really sweet flavour combination. Forget your pickled beetroot THIS is where you can truly appreciate the awesomeness of beetroot. 

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Roasted Beetroot and Garlic Houmous
240g (1 tin) chickpeas
2 tbsp tahini
2 beetroots
3 cloves garlic
1/2 juice of lemon
Handful of fresh coriander
Salt and pepper
Olive oil
2 tbsp water

  • Peel the beetroot and chop into small chunks. In a baking tray, roast the beetroot and garlic cloves in the oven for 35 minutes with a drizzle of olive oil.
  • Meanwhile, blend the chickpeas in a food processor along with the tahini. Add the lemon juice. 
  • Once the beetroot is cooked, add it to the chickpea mix. Peel the skin of the garlic cloves and pop in the mixture, and drain any excess olive oil into the processor too.
  • Blend until smooth, this may take awhile depending on the power of your blender.
  • Add the coriander and season with salt and pepper.

Enjoy

Veronica x

Raspberry Cheesecake [vegan and gluten free]

What’s going on with this heat? Last week we were moaning that it felt like winter, now we’re in the midst of a bloomin’ heatwave! I’m definitely NOT complaining. I love the heat. I love having all the doors and windows open. Love the amazing sunsets. And love actually wearing my summery clothes. When the weather reaches these dizzy heights I cling onto my childhood memories, when I’m sure summer holidays were definitely sunnier than they appear to be these days. Perhaps I have a rose tinted view of those idealistic days, when the only care was what time the ice cream van was rocking up, or which tree we’d be climbing. But, summer memories definitely involve summer berries that’s for sure. And what better way to enjoy the raspberries you’ll be a picking than in this super tasty Raspberry Cheesecake. 

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Raspberry Cheesecake
For the base:
150g medjool dates
100g almonds
60g oats
50g coconut oil (melted)

For the filling:
1 block firm tofu
225g raspberries
50g coconut oil
1 tbsp rice/fruit/agave syrup

  • In a food processor, blend the dates, almonds and oats until thoroughly chopped. Melt the coconut oil in a saucepan on a low heat and blend with the nut mixture, it should combine slightly.  
  • Add to your tin (I used mini tart tins), press down firmly using your hands and pop in the fridge for a couple of hours to set.
  • Drain the tofu, and blend in the processor until smooth. Add the raspberries, and blend until smooth and creamy.
  • Melt the coconut oil and add along with the syrup and blend once more until combined.
  • Spread evenly over the base and leave in the fridge for another few hours until firm.
  • Top with fresh fruit.

Get picking those raspberries 🙂

Veronica x

Green Smoothie Bowl

I’m right in the peak of training for the London Marathon. In fact, I don’t have too many more big runs before the BIG run itself. Eek! I’ve been pushing myself harder this year, I know I can reach the distance but I want to improve my time and get round in 4 hours and 30 minutes, and that means knocking off at least 30 seconds every mile if not more. It doesn’t sound a lot and it is doable, but have I got it in me to do it over 26.2 miles? I hope so.

I have been working on my post running nutrition, which I don’t think I’ve taken too seriously before and I’m feeling the effects. One thing I struggle with after a long run is fatigue. Not only do I feel physically exhausted but I am emotionally exhausted too. It is best to give me a wide birth because I probably will snap your head off! So, this protein packed seasonal smoothie bowl is the perfect post run or exercise smoothie to chow down on that will help your muscles to recover and also help with the crash of fatigue.

Smoothie bowl

green smoothie

Green Smoothie Bowl
(Makes 2 small bowls)

1 Pear
1 Apple
3 Stalks of kale
2 tspn Hemp protein powder
450 ml Almond milk
3 tspn Chia seeds
Handful of Almonds
4 tspn Hemp seeds
Handful of Pumpkin seeds

  • Slice the apple, pear and de-stalk the kale.
  • Add to your blender with the hemp powder and almond milk.
  • Blitz until smooth and creamy.
  • Pour into a bowl and top with the almonds, hemp seeds, chia seeds and pumpkin seeds (or toppings of your choice).

Veronica x

Gingerbread Granola Bars

It’s nearly Christmas!!!! Woohoo! I’m mainly excited about the time off work – not having a routine, going for dog walks and watching loads of films. I know my motto most Christmasses has been to eat, drink and be merry, but that does nothing for my tummy and I end up in agony and feeling pretty unmerry. I’m running the London marathon again next year so I’ll be starting my training over the festive period, which will mean I won’t just be feasting in front of the telly. 

Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve started a 5k to Couch training programme at my work, in the hope of raising a bit of money to go towards my fundraising target and to help get people moving. After all, anyone can run you just need to start and it’s always a bit more fun in a group! I think it will definitely get a bit more popular in the new year, but there is no reason to put it off until then especially when you’re loafing around the house over Christmas. These tasty gingerbread granola bars are perfect to fuel your runs, and I’ll be eating them at work to fuel my 5k to couch sessions.

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Gingerbread Granola Bars

100g Rolled oats
20g Pumpkin seeds
20g Sunflower seeds
50g Almonds
2 tsp Ground ginger
1 tsp Ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp Ground cloves
1/4 tsp Ground nutmeg
150g Almond butter
1 tbsp Ground flax seeds
3tbsp Water
2 tbsp Coconut oil
2 tbsp Maple syrup

  • Whilst the ground flax seeds and water together in a cup and set aside.
  • Roughly chop the almonds and mix together with the rest of the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
  • Gently heat the almond butter, maple syrup and coconut oil together in a saucepan on a low heat until well combined.
  • Remover from the heat and stir in the flax seed mixture.
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix together well.
  • Spoon the mixture out onto a lined baking tray and press down firmly.
  • Bake for 20 mins in a pre-heated oven at 180C.
  • Remove from the oven, cut into bars whilst still warm and leave in the tray to cool.  

Enjoy a fabulous Christmas!

Veronica x

Vegetable Crisps

This past week I’ve been grumpy. Pretty darn grumpy. I’ve been sugar detoxing. I cut it out. All of it out. I’m talking refined sugar AND natural sugar. It’s been tough, but I have made it through the other side.

I don’t know if you’re new around these parts, or if you remember me writing this post about when I was told I had Candida and then gave up sugar for months. Well, I’ve been suffering pretty badly with my tummy troubles again and after we spoke at the Vegan Futures festival a couple of weekends ago people were really interested in the sugar-free aspect of what we had to say. I knew it was time to take a step back, look at how sugar had crept back into my diet again and take control of what I was feeding my body.

Vegetable crisps

The diet I’m currently following is pretty strict, I’m talking no caffeine, no wheat, no potatoes, no fruit and no alcohol. Although, I did let three margaritas pass my lips the other Friday (but we’ll just pretend that didn’t happen)! Planning interesting meals and snacks can be tricky especially when there is just no time! I’ve come to realise when I reach for a snack (which is often) I’ve got into a habit of heading straight for something sweet, whether that’s a banana, jam on toast, or a couple of biscuits.

I’ve been snacking A LOT on almonds and seeds but after a while they become pretty boring. So, I thought I’d make my own crisps because I LOVE crisps.

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Vegetable Crisps

1 tbsp coconut oil
6 stalks of kale or cavolo nero
Half a parsnip
Half a carrot
Half a beetroot
2 garlic cloves
Half a lemon
Salt and pepper

  • De-stalk the kale or cavolo nero and cut into pieces. Peel the carrot, parsnip and beetroot and then, using the peeler, slice the vegetables thinly.
  • Meanwhile heat the oven to 160C and melt the coconut oil in a baking tray.
  • Place the vegetables onto the baking tray and coat in the oil, add the cloves of garlic and drizzle with the lemon juice.
  • Bake for 20 minutes until crispy.
  • Once out of the oven season with salt and pepper. I added a little more lemon juice afterwards too.
  • Leave to cool before you eat them. 

This is a great alternative to grabbing a packet of crisps or going for that sweet snack, and they’re so easy to make. You don’t need a fancy gadget to get super thinly sliced pieces just use your vegetable peeler. You can always make a double batch if you want to make enough for two or three people (or just more for you)!

Happy snacking!

Veronica x

Spiced Apple Porridge with Grilled Pears

I don’t know about you but as soon as it’s cold enough to need to wear a coat outside I can’t be doing with a cold breakfast in the morning! I need something to warm me up before I’m even going to think about stepping out the front door.

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This porridge is the perfect, warming autumn breakfast. It brings together the bounty of autumn fruit with delicious spices for an awesome breakfast treat! I would definitely say it’s a weekend breakfast… my weekday porridge consists of throw oats and milk in a pan with some frozen berries and leave it to cook whilst I dry my hair. But maybe it’s just me who’s always rushing in the morning…

vegan-porridge

Spiced Apple Porridge with Grilled Pears

For the grilled pears:
2 pears
Coconut sugar
Pinch of ground cinnamon
Pinch of ground cloves
Pinch of ground nutmeg

For the porridge:
80g porridge oats
300ml your favourite non dairy milk
approx. 50ml water
1 apple
1/2tsp cinnamon
Pinch of ground cloves
Pinch of ground nutmeg

For topping:
1 tbsp hazelnuts
1 tbsp pumpkin seeds

  • Pre-heat the grill on a medium-high setting. Wash the pears, slice in half lengthways and scoop out the core. Place on a baking tray and sprinkle with the sugar and spices. Grill the pears for around 20-25 minutes whilst you prepare the porridge.
  • Place a saucepan on a low-medium heat and add the oats, spices and milk.
  • Wash the apple and grate it before adding it to the saucepan straight away before it browns. Stir the porridge well whilst it cooks to ensure you get a nice creamy porridge.
  • Whilst the porridge cooks, heat a frying pan on a high heat and add the hazelnuts. Shake occasionally to prevent burning until the skins start to peel away. Transfer onto some kitchen towel and leave to cool slightly before rubbing in the towel to remove the skins. Meanwhile toast the pumpkin seeds in the frying pan, shaking the pan until they start to pop then transfer into a bowl to cool.
  • When the porridge starts to thicken you may need to add some water, up to 50ml to get your preferred consistency. (I always find how much liquid you require can vary quite dramatically depending on what oats you use). After 15-20 minutes you should have perfect creamy porridge ready to serve.
  • Chop the toasted hazelnuts and sprinkle over along with the pumpkin seeds. Finally top with the grilled pears.

Get yourself ready for a crisp autumn morning with this warming spiced porridge.  

Enjoy!

A x

Roasted Beetroot & Raw Green Salad

This week is all about beetroot – you may have seen this tasty looking Chocolate Beetroot Cake Amy made last year…

Chocolate Beetroot Cake

Well the recipe has made it into the final of PETA’s Great Vegan Bake-Off with this delicious cake and we are alongside some tasty looking creations, so we need your vote, because winning would be amazing! Voting is open until the 18th September, so please click through and place your vote (for us incase that wasn’t clear!)

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Thanks!! 🙂

So back down to business, the thing with beetroot is it’s underrated. I’m ashamed to admit that it wasn’t that long ago until I didn’t realise the only way to eat it wasn’t out of a jar full of vinegar ready sliced or out of those plastic trays. We didn’t buy fresh beetroot, why bother when it’s already been cooked for you?! How wrong I was!

I have grown my own and now we get bundles delivered in our veg box. It can be delicious just simply grated in a salad like this, or indeed made into a cake. But, in my humble opinion roasting this vegetable brings out the sweetness and takes out the more earthy taste that can put some people off it – not me though I love this vegetable no matter what way it is cooked, plus the leaves make a great addition to this super tasty salad.

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Roasted beetroot and raw green salad with garlic tahini dressing

(Serves 2)

A handful of kale
A handful of beetroot leaves
A handful of spinach
Olive oil
2 medium sized beetroots
Garlic clove
Thyme
1/2  tin of chick peas
A handful of pumpkin and sunflower seeds

For the dressing
3 tbsp tahini
1 clove of garlic (crushed)
Juice of 1/2 lemon
75ml water
Salt & pepper

1. Preheat the oven to 180C , in a roasting pan drizzle some olive oil and heat for 5 minutes. Slices the beetroot into chunks then add to the roasting pan along with the garlic clove, chick peas and sprinkle some dried thyme over the top, roast for 50 minutes.
2. In a bowl mix together the tahini, lemon juice, garlic and water.  Stir until the dressing is mixed together and smooth, then season with salt and pepper.
3. Wash and dry the kale, spinach and beetroot leaves then drizzle with olive oil then massage into the leaves – this ensures the kale isn’t as tough to eat.
4. In a pan toast the pumpkin and sunflower seeds for a few minutes.
5. Once the beetroot is cooked, mix together with the leaves then drizzle with the tahini dressing. Sprinkle the seeds over the top.

Ok, yes it is a little more work than opening a jar of beetroot but give a little time and a little effort and this nutrient filled vegetable can be something truly scrumptious.

Veronica x