Recipe: Cranberry & Orange Florentines (Vegan) + Book Review

Cranberry & Orange Florentines | Vegan

One of the (many) great things about veganism’s recent surge in popularity is the huge range of new vegan cookbooks arriving on the shelves.  If you follow this blog you won’t have been allowed to miss the news of my book Vegan in 15 being published in January, (sorry!), and today I’m sharing with you a new book from fellow blogger Sharon from Bit of the Good Stuff.

Sharon’s book Bit of the Good Stuff is subtitled “over 100 plant-powered recipes for all the family to enjoy”, and it does exactly what it promises – Continue reading “Recipe: Cranberry & Orange Florentines (Vegan) + Book Review”

Recipe: Exotic Mushroom & Cashew Sweet Chilli Noodles

Exotic Mushrooms & Sweet Chilli Noodles

20 Min Meals | Vegetarian & VeganThese noodles are incredibly quick and easy to make, and taste fantastic too. Just the sort of dinner we’ve been eating a lot of since baby #2 arrived six weeks ago. I’m quickly re-learning the art of one-handed cooking, and eating a meal whilst it is still hot with both a knife and fork seems a dim and distant memory!

Variety packs of fresh ‘exotic’ or ‘speciality’ mushrooms are now sold in most supermarkets, or you can use a mixture of shiitake, oyster, enoki and any other exotic varieties you can get hold of. They aren’t the cheapest mushrooms around, but the combination of textures and flavours are worth it.

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Recipe: Blackberry & Apple Pancakes (Vegan)

Blackberry & Apple Pancakes (Vegan)

Shrove Tuesday is fast approaching, so here’s a stack of sweet and fluffy pancakes which make a lovely treat for breakfast or brunch, (though they are so quick and easy to make there’s no need to save them just for special occasions!).  The magic of these is the apple purée (or shop-bought apple sauce as I use for convenience) which makes a great egg replacer in all sorts of vegan recipes, as well as providing an apple-y sweetness to go with the blackberries here.

I know, blackberries aren’t in season any more, but as so many supermarkets are now selling frozen blackberries at very reasonable prices, (or you might have a freezer still stocked up from blackberry foraging in the autumn), thankfully we can enjoy these at any time of year.

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Recipe: Wholewheat Tagliatelle with Rocket & Hazelnut Pesto

Tagliatelle with Rocket & Hazelnut Pesto | Vegan & Vegetarian

20 Min Meals | Vegetarian & VeganThis simple pasta dish is a winner – bright, fresh, lemony pesto with a hazelnut crunch.  Pasta with pesto can be a little dry and cloying, but this one is thinned with water for a more sauce-y consistency, (rather than gallons of olive oil, which would taste amazing but take its toll on your arteries!).

Peppery rocket is available all year round in supermarkets, but you could substitute in any seasonal green leaves or fresh herbs – watercress, spinach, kale, basil or parsley or a combination of any of those would work really well too.   Continue reading “Recipe: Wholewheat Tagliatelle with Rocket & Hazelnut Pesto”

Recipe: Creamy Broccoli & Cannellini Soup

Creamy Broccoli & Cannellini Soup (vegan)

You may have noticed that I like my soups very bright and very green, (see Peapod & Little Gem Soup!), and if they are creamy and super-tasty too. that’s a bonus.

If you’re taking part in Veganuary and trying to make sure you get a protein boost at every mealtime, adding beans to your lunchtime soup before blending is such an easy way of doing this.  Not only do they bulk out the soup, (very cheaply), but once blended they add a creamy texture which makes your soup taste like it has a generous slug of double cream in it, when in fact it is vegan!

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Recipe: Speedy & Spicy Chilli Bean Burritos

Speedy & Spicy Chilli Bean Burritos | Vegan & Vegetarian

20 Min Meals | Vegetarian & VeganThese vegan beany burritos are lip-smackingly good, with a filling that is somehow creamy, fresh and spicy, all at the same time.  A perfect weeknight supper for those signed up for ‘Veganuary‘ this year, (or anyone else for that matter!).

If you’re one of those people who can’t eat a fajita without most of it ending up in your lap, the burrito is your friend. ‘Toasting’ the outer wrap until crisp in a dry frying pan acts like a glue to stick it all together and keeps the fillings neatly tucked inside.

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Recipe: Celeriac & Hazelnut Soup

Celeriac & Hazelnut Soup | Vegetarian & Vegan

Hello again! I hope you all had a restful and jolly Christmas break, and are still in holiday-mode until after the New Year festivities.  Party season is still in full swing, of course, and if you’re entertaining over the next few weeks and looking for a dinner party starter or light lunch that looks impressive, tastes incredible but is actually super-simple to put together, this Celeriac & Hazelnut Soup will be right up your street.

Celeriac is one of those brilliant root vegetables which magically transforms to a velvet-smooth soup when puréed.  You can pair it with all sorts of festive flavours – leftover chestnut purée, apple or pear, fresh herbs or watercress, mustard, and many more – but here I decided to experiment with sweet hazelnut milk and crunchy chopped hazelnuts as a garnish, and it worked really well.
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Recipe: The Ultimate Vegan Mince Pies (with Cream ‘Cheese’ Pastry)

Ultimate Vegan Mince Pies

I hadn’t planned to post so close to Christmas, but these mince pies were just too tasty not to share!  I’ve always loved homemade cream cheese pastry as the ‘ultimate’ pastry for mince pies, as it is rich, crumbly, sweet and totally delicious, and this year decided to have a go at making a vegan version.

It really isn’t rocket science, as good quality dairy-free cream cheese is now so readily-available in most supermarkets.  Substitute in a good dairy-free block margarine in place of butter and dairy-free milk as a glaze, and Bob’s your uncle.

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Recipe: Easy Beetroot & Hazelnut Mincemeat

Easy Beetroot & Hazelnut Mincemeat

You might think it is fairly late in the day to start making your own homemade mincemeat, but look carefully at the recipe details below…. cook time = 0 mins, prep time = 10 mins, (and even that is a generous estimate, I’m sure you could do it in 5 if you put your mind to it!).

This really is a cheat’s quick and easy way to make your own mincemeat, and couldn’t be easier.  The addition of beetroot and hazelnuts are my little twists to make sure people definitely know it is homemade, (there’s no point replicating the ingredients of shop-bought mincemeat exactly or you might as well just go and buy some!), but also because they add in turn a sweet earthiness, a bright festive pink colour, and a lovely sweet crunch.

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