Thursday, September 13, 2018

Vegan Mofo Day 13 No packing snacking!!! - Almond Mylk Pulp Crackers

Today's prompt for vegan mofo is snacks without packaging.

I shared on my facebook page a video of how quick & easy it is to make homemade almond mylk.
It's as simple as blending soaked almonds with water and straining the mixture! You can, of course, add any vanilla or sweeteners that you desire.
Even though this way of making almond mylk, most times, ends up less expensive than store bought versions, and without the additives that are so common in plant based mylks, the end result of making your own mylk is pulp!  
Now if you're like me, you don't want to just throw it away..... so the question remains, what to do with all the pulp! 

My daughter loves these crackers made from the almond mylk pulp!
They are easy to make and are a great snack or addition to a lunch plate.


               You'll need:
                      1 batch of almond mylk pulp (about 1.5 cups)
                      1/2 cup wholemeal flour
                      2 Tablespoons ground flax seeds
                      2 Tablespoons fresh rosemary - finely chopped
                         (you can substitute other herbs if you desire)

In a mixing bowl combine all the ingredients together. 
Depending on how dry your pulp is, you may need to add 
spoonfuls of water until the mixture is just combined. 
Line a baking tray with baking paper and spread the mixture over it. 
Top with another sheet of baking paper and use a rolling pin 
to roll out the mixture until approx. 1 cm thick. 
Using a pizza cutter score the mixture.
Bake in a preheated 200°C oven for 20-25 minutes until 
crackers are crisp, golden and cooked through. 
Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the tray. 
Break apart the pieces. 

Question of the day:

Do you make your own motherless mylk?
If so, which type do you make, and how do you use up the pulp?

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Vegan Mofo Day 12 Spicy without heat! - Mexican Baked Mushrooms

Today's mofo prompt is "Spicy without chilies".
Mexican food is often made with chilies and yet for those who don't like heat 
Mexican food also had a lot of flavour.

Here I show you how to enjoy some Mexican flavours without adding any chili..... 
and for those of you who do like heat you can always add some chili in!

This is a meal idea without exact quantities stated. The reason I do this is because I always like to encourage people to get experimental in their kitchen and enjoy the cooking process. It a wonderful way to realise that creative meals don't have to be time consuming or difficult to make. Whenever I make meals like this I make a comment to my husband "It's not that hard to make quick, easy yet enjoyable vegan meals! Why do some restaurants find it so difficult!"


                            You'll need:
                                   Large portobello mushrooms
                                   Cooked black beans
                                   Can or tub of diced tomatoes
                                   Mexican spice mix/taco mix or
                                       - paprika, cumin, coriander & oregano

                                   And a batch of my basic cheese sauce

Remove the stems from the mushrooms.
Place them in a microwave proof container with 1cm of water and heat for 2 mins. This helps to soften them and significantly reducing oven cooking time.

In a mixing bowl combine the black beans, tomatoes and spices.
Drain the water from the mushrooms and place them in an oven proof dish.
Fill the mushrooms generously with the black bean/tomato mixture and bake in a preheated 200°C oven for 15-20 minutes until mushrooms have cooked through and the black bean mixture is hot. 

Pour a freshly made batch of cheese sauce over the top of the mushrooms 
and serve with slices of fresh avocado.

I feel like this meal looks a little fancy and if I got served this 
at a restaurant I'd be more than happy! 

What do you reckon!!! Does it look fancy enough to be a restaurant meal?

Question of the day: 
What meals do you make at home that are a little bit fancy?

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Vegan Mofo Day 11 Dessert without sugar - Apple Donuts

Today's vegan mofo theme is "Dessert without added sugar"
In my opinion there's no better way to value the natural sweetness of fruit than by drastically reducing your sugar intake. And not just "sugar" but all forms of added sweeteners. 

You've probably all seen apple nacho's doing the rounds on various blogs and I've been making them for my daughter for many many years.....

BUT have you ever seen apple donuts???

Here's a bit of fun way to eat apples to give you inspiration for a tasty & healthy dessert without any sugar! 


Slice apple into 1cm thick pieces across the core. 
Cut the core out using an apple corer.
Spread with a variety of nut butters. 
Top with seeds and/or fresh or dried fruit. 

Delicious! :D

Question of the day:
What's your favourite fruit to eat?

I would have to say that probably raspberries and mango are my favourite fruits, but I sure do love a fresh crisp apple with nut butter too! 

Monday, September 10, 2018

Vegan Mofo Day 10 Baking without Flour - Breakfast Brownie

Today's vegan mofo prompt is "Baking without Gluten".
Whilst this recipe *may* contain gluten due to the oats, it is a flour free recipe which is something that is very relevant to me as I shared in my Introduction Post! For a guaranteed gluten free version you can substitute quinoa flakes in place of the oats.
I am quite enjoying my flour free life and with delicious breakfast treats like this, it's no wonder that I am not feeling deprived at all!
It would also make a great dessert for anyone who wants a little after dinner treat! 

Single Serve Black Bean Breakfast Brownie

                                  You'll need:
                                        1/2 cup cooked black beans
                                        1 Tablespoon ground flax seeds
                                        1/2 teaspoon cacao powder
                                        1/4 cup rolled oats
                                        1 small overripe banana
                                        1 teaspoon vanilla

Combine all the ingredients together in a mini food processor and pulse until lightly combined (best to keep some chunks for added satiety - Chew your food!). Add a splash of water if it's needed to combine the mixture into a thick batter. The water may or may not be needed depending on the size and ripeness of your banana and how well your beans are cooked.
Pour mixture into a silicone baking mould. I press my mixture into a quarter of a large square one. It doesn't spread as it cooks so this works well. Bake in a preheated 200°C oven for 20 minutes until cooked through and edges are crispy.

Delicious served with yogurt and berries.

Showing the pieces of banana and beans so you can see it's not pulsed thoroughly. 

*I find this sweet enough with just the banana, however if you'd like a sweeter version you can add 1 Tablespoon date paste to the batter.
*Multiply quantities if you want to make a multiple serves. 

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Vegan Mofo Day 9 Creamy without Nuts - Basic Cheese Sauce

Week 2 of Vegan Mofo already!

This week's theme is "Dietary and Lifestyle Restrictions".

Personally I don't consider 'vegan' to be a dietary restriction. In fact I have found it so freeing to be vegan and since going vegan I have definitely broadened my food intake by consuming a much bigger variety of foods than I ever previously tried. Sadly, lots of people do consider being vegan a restriction. Yet within the vegan community there are so many other restrictions as well. Not only are their people who are genuinely celiac, or have anaphylactic allergies there are also those who choose to abstain from various categories of food for other reasons.
Nuts in a popular one that is restricted by those choosing to avoid high fat foods or hoping to lose weight. 

Today's prompt is "Creamy without Nuts". Many creamy recipes and dishes require nuts, and copious amounts of them.
Today I bring you a nut free cheese sauce that is low fat and super easy to make. 


                           You'll need:
                               1/4 teaspoon each:
                                   paprika, turmeric, mustard powder, onion powder
                               1 Tablespoon each:
                                   cornflour, nutritional yeast
                               1 cup reduced fat soymilk

Combine all the dry ingredients in a microwavable glass jug with at least double the capacity. Whisk together and gradually add the milk making sure all the powders dissolve completely.
Microwave on high for 1 minute. It will begin to thicken and you will see a skin forming over the top. Whisk together the thick parts with the runny parts.
Return to the microwave for another minute. Whisk together again as the top is always more thick than the bottom. It will thicken further on standing. 

This is quite thick so it makes a great topping over recipes.

Serve it straight away if you want to be able to pour it or if you want to use it as a 'cheese slice' type substitute, you can allow it to cool more and it will go thicker and then you can gently spread it over your dish. 

If you want it much thinner, you can add another 1/2 cup soymilk or water.

This can also be made over a stove top by stirring constantly over low heat until thickened.

This makes enough sauce to serve 4 people a rather generous amount.....unless, like my family, they totally love it and then you might want to make a bit more ;-)
Shown here over baked mushrooms:

Saturday, September 8, 2018

Vegan Mofo Day 8 Epic Fail Turned Inspiration - Carrot bread rolls

Today's mofo prompt is to use our own flops from the past to improve! 
Well that could be a general life lesson really and not just applicable to cooking!!!!

I have always wanted to be able to bake bread well but never really known how and so I have been on a mission the last few years to work out how to make nice homemade bread that is 100% wholemeal and oil free, of course. I am noticing that more oil free options are slowly becoming available when it comes to bread and bread products in the stores, but sadly even when they are 'wholemeal' the % of wholemeal flour used is usually pitifully low. So I have experimented quite a bit the last few years and feel reasonably confident in my bread-making abilities now after many ~many~ flops!!!
And whilst I don't eat flour myself anymore, my family love it when they get fresh homemade bread. 

100% Wholemeal Carrot Bread Rolls
Makes 8 rolls

                              You'll need:
                                      600g wholemeal bakers flour

                                      2 teaspoons yeast
                                      1 teaspoon bread improver
                                      450ml warm water
                                      2 medium carrots


Shred the carrots using either a grater or food processor. In a large mixing bowl place all the ingredients together and mix until well combined. Once everyting is mixed in, transfer the dough to a lightly floured tray and knead for 10 mins til elastic. Return the dough to your mixing bowl and let dough rise for an hour in a warm place. I recommend heating your oven on low while you are kneading, and then turning it off and putting the dough in there.
Once risen, split into 8 portions and roll each portion into a bun shape.
Evenly space your rolls on a baking tray and bake at 180°C for about 25 mins until golden brown and cooked through. 

Super light and fluffy rolls with a bit of crunch from the carrot 
and no unnecessary ingredients!

Question of the day:
What kitchen flops have you had in the past? 
Is there anything you want to learn how to cook better?

Friday, September 7, 2018

Vegan Mofo Day 7 Colour - Italian Inspired Beans

Today's vegan mofo prompt is Colour!
I made this basic dish sometime ago and as I made it I mixed a variety of herbs wondering if they would work out well together...... I'm pleased to report that they did and I love this combo now. However I tricked myself by the 'colours' of this dish because I was thinking it would taste of Italian herbs..... but it didn't exactly have that traditional italian flavour..... it was just the colours that were Italian inspired to match their flag!!!

So it seemed appropriate to post this simple recipe for today's colour theme! 


(Makes 4 servings)
                   You'll need:
                           1 can butter beans*
                           1 can red kidney beans*
                           2 zucchinis
                           1 onion
                           1 garlic clove
                           1/2 cup tomato passata
                           1/2 teaspoon each: 
                           cumin, oregano, turmeric, dried onion flakes, paprika

Drain the butter beans and kidney beans and set them aside. 
Chop the onion into pieces and dry fry in a pan with the crushed garlic until beginning to brown. Stir in all the herbs and a few spoons of water and saute until fragant. Add the chopped zucchini and place a lid over the pan to allow to steam the zucchini for approx 5 mins until tender. Stir through the drained beans and passata and stir frequently until dish is completely warmed through.

Recommended to be served with a wholegrain and a side of leafy greens :-)

* Always choose salt free and BPA free varieties when you can.