Monday, 30 September 2013

Black Rice and Butternut Squash Savoury Fritters

I am pretty pleased with myself, missing only four days of blogging for Vegan Mofo 2013 two days of which have been the weekend.  Will you forgive me if I told you it was because I had my own vegan/vegetarian food stall at a Food & Craft Market yesterday?!

Anyway, I've enjoyed participating in Vegan Mofo 2013.  As a vegetarian, its not been that hard for me to cook vegan meals at home.  It has been harder to eat out though, there are not that many places in Wales, United Kingdom that offer imaginative vegetarian or vegan dishes, hence the reason all my post have been about home cooking.   
Well for my last post for Vegan Mofo, I thought I'd share a dish I made some time last week.  Its Black Rice and Butternut Squash Savoury Fritters.  

Friday, 27 September 2013

Curried Parsnip Samosa Pies

I mentioned a little while ago that I was venturing into vegan and vegetarian pie territory.  Well, here is another pie that I make now and again and it proves to be quite popular with ever one who has a bite.  You don't see this variation :  sweet root parsnip spiced up  on food stalls much at the moment, but I know you will soon!  Leave me a comment and I will tell you why?

If you want to see what the inside of this pie looks like, then please follow this link and you will be able to feast your beady eyes on the spicy filling.  

My family are not that keen on parsnips, because of its sweetness.  In fact its not a vegetable that my mother cooked much when I was a child.  The same is so of my sister in laws as my nephews and nieces do not  eat it either, but when I presented some to them, well they all agreed that it was utterly delicious.  In fact, my mother and sister in laws thought that the parsnip pie was made from sweet potatoes - the white variety (not red).  I can see why.      
 I served these with chaat masala new potatoes, chickpeas (and pepper namely for colour).

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Vegan Southern Indian Black Pepper Curry

About a week or so ago, I featured a Vegan 'Beef' Soy Chunks and Green Papaya Curry on my blog.  I thought I'd continue cooking with the soy chunks imitating meat today.  So here is a Black Pepper  Soya Chunk Curry.   

Now and again in a curry style dish, I do like to alternate the fiery heat of red chilli powder for warmth of black pepper.   One of my favourite black pepper dishes, must be this Malaysian Black Pepper Tofu curry from Rasa Malysia.  Oh the memories of eating that dish is really making my mouth water.  I might just have to pick up some tofu in the next few days.

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Vegan Beetroot Chocolate Cake with Beetroot Dust and Beetroot 'Buttercream' Icing

I've combined chocolate and beetroot in sweet dishes including cakes plenty of times - beetroot browniesbeetroot waffles; and beetroot swirl muffins , but I was most surprised to note that I had not posted a larger version of a cake, especially as I must have made this particular Beetroot Chocolate Cake at least four times last year.  

So I thought well, why not make it again ...and so I have. 

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Beetroot, Red Onion and Puy Lentil Bourguignon

When my nose begins to have that wet cat nose feeling,  my culinary thoughts begin to turn to making a Bourguignonne of chestnuts, mushrooms and roasted garlic.  It is perhaps my most popular of autumnal and wintry dishes.  

In fact I even made it last year - twice for a Christmas party served with pan-fried Sun dried Tomato and Rosemary Polenta that were shaped like Christmas Pine Trees.  But that was not the Bourguingnonne that I would be making.  Instead, I thought I'd try a recipe for Beet Bourguignon that I had seen on the Internet last year and logged it my head.  Beetroot is not my thing, but my man loves the stuff, so it was with him in mind that I kept the dish in mind, plus the fact that I do like trying out new dishes and flavour combinations.  

A few of my favourite vegan things

I thought with it being Vegan Mofo 2013, I would take the opportunity to share some of my favourite things.  Its not a long list, just some vegan food blogs and some of my go to vegan recipes.

First up is one of my favourite vegan food blogs.  Maple Spice - it is written by the very talented Debbie.  
I discovered Maple Spice in 2009 and immediately won over by not just Debbies writing, but her recipes and the creativity she injects into each and every one of her dishes  Its one of the places I go to for inspiration; or if I just want to just drool over Debbies fantastic edible creations.  I don't want to repeat what I wrote then,  so please just follow my blog link.

Now onto two vegan recipes that I totally enjoy making and eating.  
I've never ever eaten bacon in my life, so its kind of strange that I enjoy eating No Meat Athletes Facon Bacon, especially in a vegan BLT.  For my variation, please follow this link.  
The same is true of chorizo sausages.  I've never had them ever, but I do like the idea of spicy sausages having eaten spicy South Asian shish kebabs made by my mother from scratch when I was a child.  So  you can imagine how delighted I was when I discovered these oh so awesome Vegan Chorizo Sausages from Viva Vegan by Terry Hope Romero.   Terry Hope Romero  was kind enough to grant me permission to share her recipe on my blog.  See here for the recipe with some of slight variations.

Monday, 23 September 2013

Vegan Food Swap U.K (September 2013)

After enjoying partaking in my first vegan food swap last month, I decided to participate again.  I mean who wouldn't mind receiving a package containing edible goodies.  Well certainly not me.  

This month my package came from the Lovely Claire who blogs over at Great Vegan Expectations.  In the package, Claire included a little hand-written card.  She wrote 'I tried to include a variety of fun and convenient snacks, as well as cooking ingredients as I can telly from your blog you like inventing wholesome dishes.  I hope you enjoy it!'  I do Claire.  Thank you. 

Sunday, 22 September 2013

Jamaican Butternut Squash Stew

You will have to forgive me for what will be a short post, I am a little distracted at the moment with things that are taking a little bit more priority than blogging at the moment, but before I go, I thought I'd share this Jamaican Butternuts Squash Stew that I made for our supper this evening.

Oh my it was really flavourful.  I really liked the gravy and the heat imparted from the scotch bonnet.  If the thought of Scotch Bonnet frightens you, then please feel free to exchange it for a milder red chilli. The stew was served with some plain white rice. 

Friday, 20 September 2013

Papaya Salsa

I've made my popular Black Turtle Bean and Red Pepper Chilli so that we could have enchiladas for supper in the the next few days. To accompany the enchiladas I sometimes make my own tomato salsa or even one with the added crunch of celery.  However, as I still had half a papaya in the fridge left over from the  'Mauritian Beef' Soy Chunk and Papaya Curry early in the week, I thought I'd try my hand at making a papaya fruit salsa.  

I knew it would work, as I've tried both pineapple salsa and mango salsa in the past, but I did not know how much I would like it.  So what was the verdict?!

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Calypso Pineapple Bean Pot

This colourful Calypso Pineapple Bean Pot was like my day today, quite disappointing.  

I made this recipe based on a  Haitian stew because it intrigued me; as well as the fact that I had some pineapple left over from the Pineapple and Black Bean Stew, but I am sorry to say it just didn't push the right buttons for me.
Although it has sweetness from the fresh pineapple, zing from lime juice and a little warmth from the cayenne pepper, I felt it lacked depth. 
 It wasn't wasted though, most of it was eaten with plain white rice.

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Whole Hazelnut and Molasses Oat Bars

I know these whole hazelnut and molasses oat bars look chocolatey, but the oats here have been stained by the black strap molasses.  

What I like about the look of these Oat bars is that they just shout out autumn to me - my favourite season.  

Monday, 16 September 2013

Vegan 'Beef' Soy Chunks and Green Papaya Curry

The past few days I have been feeling rather ravenous in my appetite.  I want to snarl, bite and spit. No just kidding, but I have been wishing to sink my teeth (recently checked by the dentist)  into something of more substance , something with a bit more texture.  

Soy chunks don't often appear on my homely menu, soy mince maybe for Shepherdess Pie or Tamale Pie, but not so much soy chunks.  This was the time to try it in an attempt to substitute it for the real thing - beef.

Sunday, 15 September 2013

Friday, 13 September 2013

Beetroot Brazil Nut Roast

The  last curly kale polenta wedges were consumed yesterday morning for breakfast. So in the next few days a slice or two of this Beetroot Brazil Nut Roast will grace our plates.  

Its been a long while since I've made nut roast, well when I think of it - it was last year around Christmas time, still that is a while ago.  With the season changing, well it makes sense for a vegetarian who wants more texture and bite on the plate.

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Black Beans and Pineapple Stew

This is a really easy dish.  Its not the kind of dish I often make, a bit of sweet and sour, but after my culinary venture a few months back, I have been left with a load of dried beans, of which there are plenty of black turtle beans. 

At the weekend I also picked up a couple of pineapples for the bargain price of 2 for £1.  I knew what I was going to make with one of them - Upside Down Pineapple Cake, but not so sure about the other - perhaps a fruit salad.  But in reality it went towards this stew that we ate only last night. 

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Sea Salt and Balsamic Vinegar Kale Crisps

I love it when I find bunches of kale, the rustling leafy green still in tact clinging tight to its hard core stalk.  I love it because for me its an invitation to make some kale crisps

I've mentioned before that Kale chips are expensive to purchase and yet like most things, so cheap to make at home.  In the past I've made my simple crispy curly kale chips, even cavolo nero strips of chips but this time I wanted to enhance the flavours a little more, but not too much - I do love my spices, but this time I wanted to go for sharp and zingy, so here are my Sea Salt and Balsamic Vinegar Curly Kale Crisps. 

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Vegan Butter Bean Curry

Well if you liked my Red Kidney Bean Curry, then I already know you are going to love my Vegan Butter Bean Curry. 

Butter Beans are also known as lima beans.  These butter beans were dried, so I soaked them overnight and cooked them the following day until tender.  I don't like using tinned butter beans, not because I am a snob as I'm quite content with tinned chickpeas.  Its just that I have often found that once decanted, drained and rinsed - the tinned butter beans are mushed in the brine and horrid to look at, let alone eat - Yuk!  So if you do decided to make this, all this is way of saying, please please do not substitute this recipe with tinned, soaking your butter beans here is really worth the effort.

Monday, 9 September 2013

Chestnut Mushroom and Barley Broth

The weather has certainly turned and the extra layering of clothing has begun.  I have swapped my light summery cardigan now for a thick jacket; or on rainy days that rain-coat.  Not quite ready for the woolly hat, scarves and gloves...but I know it won't be too long. 

This weather for me also signals the start of soups, stews and hearty broths to warm the belly when its bitterly cold, wet and miserable outside.   

Sunday, 8 September 2013

Polenta Kale Wedges with Chilli Cumin Carrots

There are a number of vegetables that I truly miss growing, courgettes, tomatoes, Swiss chard and curly kale.  Oh how I came to like curly kale. 

Well yesterday I got ever so excited when I saw a bundle of curly kale, I snatched a bunch.   You can of course find them at supermarkets, but its already torn and shredded.  I want it whole, the whole leaf so that I can make some kale chips,.  Kale chips are super pricey in the health shops and yet like most things, so cheap to make at home, providing of course you can get the ingredients.  And this weekend I was fortunate to do so.  The crispy kale chips will appear on my blog in the next few days, but today I want to share these Polenta Kale Wedges.

Saturday, 7 September 2013

The Best Vegan Elvis Bagel

I have posted this recipe on my before.  The reason I am posting it again, is that I made it today for a snack and thought it would be a good opportunity to showcase it to new readers coming via Vegan Mofo.

Its not really a recipe, just a easy snack you can put together in moments providing you have all the ingredients to hand which are bagels, bananas, peanut butter (crunchy or smooth - you choose) and strawberry jam or jell if you want to be more authentic.  
The bagels lightly are toasted.  Then the bottom half of the bagel is spread generously with peanut butter, the top half generously with good strawberry jam.  Before both halves are pressed together, the middle is packed in a domino fashion with sliced banana for height and visual impact.  This is one high octane of a Bagel.  I think Elvis Presley would approve, don't you?!

Friday, 6 September 2013

Fresh Strawberry and Blackberry on Raw Cinnamon Almond Crust

I was conversing with a blogger friend some time last week and we both agreed that it was the first time that we had seen both locally grown strawberries and blackberries side by side.

It has been a strange summer, not that I am moaning it has been a fabulous change from the dreary persistent rain that has overshadowed me since I moved back to Wales.  So its been nice to see the sun still shining, though the early mornings and evenings are beginning to get a bit nippy on the cheeks.

Thursday, 5 September 2013

Vegan Red Kidney Bean Curry

I do enjoy eating chickpeas in whatever cooked form, whether they be roasted, as a dip such as hummus or in a curry.  Next to chickpeas, I think butter beans would be top on my legume list, kidney beans would come thereafter.  I tend to cook with kidneys beans in chilli pots, veggie burgers, soups, bean salads and more recently these Sunny Caribbean Vegetable Patty Pies.

I have to admit, its been a long while since I've made this Red Kidney Bean curry.  To be honest I cannot remember the last time, maybe when I was a student. 

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Cauliflower Steaks with Harissa Oil

Like many vegetarians and vegans exploring blogospheres virtual library of cookbooks, I was introduced to the idea of 'cauliflower steaks' about 6 - 8 years ago.  Upon discovering it, I tried it at some point  and was a convert to appreciating that off white brain like vegetable: cauliflower.  I have to say its become one of my  preferred ways of eating cauliflower, somehow roasting it in the oven changes not only the texture, but the flavour into something actually quite delicious.  I know for some of you to call a piece of cauliflower a steak, may seem quite absurd, but  they are actually quite chunky and dare I say 'meaty', so for those of you a little apprehensive about this, please don't mock them until you've tried them, please.    

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

No Bake Carrot Cake Granola Bites

There is no shortage of vegan friendly granola balls aka energy bites on blogosphere.  Granola balls are all common in that they are made with traditional rolled oats, but held together with different nut butters such as peanut, hazelnut, almond and dried fruit such as apricots, cherries, raisins, sultanas and so on.  I decided to base mine on this one, only because I had many of the ingredients to hand, as well as the carrots that I mentioned early in the week that had to be used up.

Monday, 2 September 2013

Carrot and Raisin Cake Muesli

Want to try something different for breakfast, then why not try a bowl of this home-made Carrot and Raisin 'Cake' Muesli to kick-start your day.
This Carrot and Raisin 'Cake' Muesli recipe came about last week when I found myself with an excess of carrots that had to be used or thrown in the compost bin, well being a thrifty home cook - of course they were in a number of homely dishes, such as this Vegan Carrot, Potato and Peas Curry. 

Sunday, 1 September 2013

Vegan Carrot, Potato and Peas Curry

September the 1st marks the start of Vegan Month of Food also fondly referred to as Vegan MoFo in blogosphere.

This is my first year of participating in Vegan MoFo, and I have decided to kick-start with a relatively simple and thrifty Anglo-Indian curry  that I have veganized by replacing the ghee or butter with vegetable oil.