Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Mushroom & lentil patties

Yummiest patties :-)

Chop an onion into little pieces, put into a bowl. Add a cup of chopped mushrooms & a tin of drained lentils.
Add about a tablespoon smokey bbq sauce & half cup freshly grated wholemeal breadcrumbs. Add a tablespoon of Orgran egg replacer.
Stir until well combined.
Shape into patties and lightly fry until golden brown.


Lentil & Spinach Stew

This is seriously the best meal I've had in soooooooooo long.
The flavours work fantastically together & its so comforting to eat!

(Serves 2)

You'll need:
1 pack of traffic light capsicums - use half of each capsicum
1 onion
1 zucchini
1 tin lentils (I use Woolworths brand no added salt ones)
1/4 head cauliflower
1 tin of tomatoes
100-150g fresh spinach (not silverbeet but actual spinach leaves)
Italian herbs
Cracked black pepper
2 tablespoons unhulled tahini
Sprinkling of nutritional yeast

Cut the onion and capsicums into small pieces.
Place in a warmed frying pan with 1/2 cup water & allow to soften. Do not allow pan to go completely dry - add more water if needed. The water also helps to make the capsicum and onion soft.
Add the chopped zucchini & cauliflower and cook for another 5 minutes.
Drain the tin of lentils and then add them to the pan. Stir until completely mixed in with the vegetables. Add the tomatoes and keep on the heat til mixture is completely warmed through - approx another 5 mins.
Turn the heat off & then put the spinach leave on the top of the mixture. Allow the residual heat to wilt the spinach leaves and then stir stew until well combined.
Serve into bowls & add a tablespoon of tahini on the top. Add a sprinkling of nutritional yeast also.

This is delicious with the tahini stirred into the stew as it thickens & makes it very creamy!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Quick breakfast bites

Do you like to sleep in & miss time for breakfast?
Do you not feel like eating first thing in the morning but know you should?

Never fear! Breakfast bites are here!!!!
My daughter loves these & has them anytime of the day. But I originally planned them as a treat for breakfast!

You'll need:
8 weetbix
3/4 cup coconut cream
1 cup mixed dried fruit
1/4 cup sunflower kernels
1 tablespoon cocoa

Place the weetbix into a plastic lunch bag & crush up with your fingers until no big pieces remain & the weetbix are very crumbly.
Pour the weetbix crumbs into a bowl & add the remaining ingredients.
Mix together til well combined. The mixture will hold together.

Wet hands & roll mixture into bite sized balls about a tablespoon of mixture in each.
Optional: You can roll these in coconut or crushed peanuts for a taste variation.
Place in the fridge to cool.

How's that for quick & easy breakfast!

Friday, September 2, 2011

Cannellini bean mash

Need added beans to a meal to complete it but don't want to eat them plain?
Can't be bothered peeling potatoes?

Here is the answer..... and a very tasty & easy one at that!

You'll need:
1 tin cannellini beans
2 tablespoons lemon juice (i use bottle stuff, otherwise i would recommend using bout half a lemon)
1 teaspoon dried garlic flakes

Drain the beans & place them in a microwave proof bowl.
Microwave on high for 1 and a half minutes.
Add lemon juice and garlic flakes.
Mash til well combined.


You can sprinkle some green herbs over the top for presentation if desired.

This picture shows the mash served with my sweet potato patties.

Bean Lasagne

Chop a medium eggplant into slices & place on the bottom of a lightly sprayed oven dish.
In a bowl, combine 1 drained tin red kidney beans, 1/2 cup tomato cooking sauce and 1 tablespoon Italian herb mix.  Mash until beans are broken down & all ingredients are well combined.
Place a layer of the bean mix on top of the eggplant. Then place strips of zucchini or chopped sweet potato or other veggies of choice. Repeats layers until dish is full. Make sure the top layer is the bean mix.
Bake in a hot oven for 30 minutes or until veggies are soft & top is lightly browned.
Perfect partners: a salad or side of wedges.

Maybe this shouldn't be called a lasagne since it has no pasta in it!
Perhaps its better names veggie & bean stack! But whatever its called, I don't mind because it is absolutely DIVINE tasting! And its gluten free for those who need it!

Sweet Potato Patties

You'll need:
1 medium sweet potato
1/4 cup chopped pistachios (walnuts also work great in this recipe if you'd rather)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon tahini
1 chopped shallot
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1/2 cup corn flake crumbs (or more if needed)

Peel and slice the sweet potato. Bring to the boil in a large pot and cook until tender.
Drain & transfer to a bowl & mash well.
Add the chopped nuts, soy sauce, tahini, shallot & dried thyme. Mix well (best done whilst potato is still warm so the tahini melts and stirs more evenly).
Add the corn flake crumbs & stir gently until the mixture becomes slightly thicker & will hold together. You may need more crumbs depending on how moist the sweet potato is.
Press into a burger press or alternatively press into patties with wet hands.
Place on a lined oven tray & bake at 180C for 25 mins until lightly browned.

These are delicious served with my cannellini bean mash or bean salad.

I love my tupperware burger press and recommend it highly. Its so easy to use and the burgers come out perfectly shaped & even every time without sticking to the sides.

Cereal Bars

Great way to use up any leftover cereal.

You'll need:
2 cups cereal
2 tablespoons brown rice syrup
2 tablespoons nuttelex
1/4 cup brown sugar
approx 2 teaspoons water

Melt the nuttelex & brown rice syrup in a pot. Add the brown sugar & stir until melted - do not overcook.
Pour cereal into a bowl & add the melted sugar mixture. Add the water only if needed to keep the mixture moist.
Put into a muesli bar maker - or alternatively press into a lined baking tray. Put into fridge until set - at least 1/2 hour.
Press out of muesli bar maker - or cut the mixture into bars from the baking tray.

Delicious with soy yogurt & passionfruit.

The muesli bar set shown in the picture is a tupperware product click here to see the details.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Dessert Spring Rolls

A great treat to throw into children's lunch boxes :-)

And very easy to make! They will enjoy helping you assemble these!

You'll need:
rice paper rolls
dried apples

Use as much or as little of these ingredients as you desire. Blend in a food processor til smooth but with a few bite size pieces left.

Place about 2 tablespoons mixture onto a moistened rice paper roll.
Do not overfill or they are very hard to roll!!
Place assembled rolls onto a sheet of baking paper.
Place in a hot oven & bake for 20 mins or until lightly golden brown.
Allow to cool before eating.

Goes well with almond cream! :-)   (blend almonds & apple juice til creamy mixture is made)

Curried Cabbage

I'm a big fan of red cabbage.
Here's another delicious way to use up any leftovers that you might have!

Saute in a pan 1/2 red cabbage chopped into fine pieces and 2 sliced leeks.
Add a tablespoon dried basil.
Cook until wilted. Add a drop of water here and there as needed so it doesn't burn or stick to the bottom of the pan.
Add one tin drained lentils & 1/4 cup peanuts. Stir well to combine.
 Once all the ingredients are warm through, add to the fry-pan 2 tablespoons lemon juice, 2 tablespoons soy sauce & 1 teaspoon curry powder. Stir until well combined.

Place mixture into bowls & top with fresh or dried parsley.
This can be eaten as is, but is also really nice the next day once cooled on a bed of lettuce leaves.
It has such deep and delicious flavours!
Enjoy :-)


I decided that I wanted to make a healthy version of nutella! When I told my daughter this she asked what nutella was!!!! I was secretly very proud that I have lasted 7 years without my daughter finding out about nutella!!!! lol
Well now she's addicted - but I'm more than happy to put this on her school lunches!!!

I like the way this doesn't become completely 'smooth' - it reminds me a bit of crunchy peanut butter! And of course, it tastes divine!!!

You'll need:
1 cup roasted soybeans (if you want you can use cooked ones that haven't been roasted, they just won't taste as nutty)
1 tablespoon hazelnut spread
1 tablespoon cocoa powder
2 tablespoons warm water (more or less depending on consistency desired)

In a food processor combine the soybeans and cocoa powder. Process until the soybeans are quite broken down. (This will take some time - also if you have a mini food processor, it seems to work better for smaller amounts of food - it won't all fly off to the edges then!)
Add the hazelnut spread & continue to process until desired smoothness is reached!
(You can choose to add a touch of sweetner if your taste prefers a sweeter sweet - try agave nectar.)
Put into a container & store in the fridge.

Really great as a filling for ginger logs :-)

Tempeh Rolls

This recipe is really tasty.
I'm not the biggest fan of tempeh but I quite like it in these rolls.
You can experiment with various fillings to get different tastes.

Lightly fry til golden:
1 chopped onion
1 grated carrot
1 teaspoon minced garlic
150g grated tempeh
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon sage

Add to the pan:
1/2 cup tomato paste
You may need to use a little bit of water to thin it to mix it throughout the tempeh mixture.

Cut the puff pastry sheet in half & spread half of the mixture onto each side.
Roll the sides over & wet the pastry lightly with water (I just use my hands to do this - I just find the water helps the sides stick down better).
Bake in a 200C oven for about 20 mins until golden brown.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Salad ideas

So I've decided to start eating more salads at lunchtime!
The problem arose when I realised that I always feel like they never fill me up!

How many people think of salad as just vegetables???
Or how many people think of salads as something as bad as ceasar salad???

Well I have come up with a few never fail hints for how to make the perfect salad that will keep you full til dinner time!

--> always add at least half a cup of beans/legumes. Feel free to experiment here! I like to cook my own in the slow cooker if i have time
--> add 15-30grams of nuts
--> to add sweetness to your salad try adding currants or raisins
--> onions seem to really over-power the taste of the rest of the salad & leave us with onion breathe! Try using 1 or 2 spring onions instead! They add a lovely onion flavour without overpowering the whole salad.
--> as much as I love garlic, I never used more than 1 clove per salad or again it becomes overpowering
--> use freshly juiced fruit as dressing - I suggest orange, pineapple (pineapple with chili is a great combination)

Have fun munching on your salad :-)

Just a suggestion....

Ice-cream..... mmmmmmmmmmm
But my favourite way to have it is to mix in some peanut butter - crunchy of course - with chocolate ice-cream!

I know this doesn't look too appetising - and its not the world's greatest recipe to have on a blog - but none the less I love it soooo much that I just had to share it!!!!!

Okara burgers

Another recipe created to use up okara after making soymilk!

These burgers are really tasty & very nutritious!
The vegetables can be changed to suit any leftovers you might have hanging around.

You'll need:
1 cup okara
egg replacer to the value of 2 eggs
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon mustard
1/2 grated zucchini
1/2 tin corn, drained
3 tablespoons sunflower kernels
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons wholemeal flour

Prepare the egg replacer first. Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl til well combined. Add the egg replacer and stir.
The mixture is quite sticky but this helps the burgers stay moist & not fall apart.
Press the mixture into pattie shapes, even by hand (wet hands with water so mixture does not stick) or alternatively use a burger press.
Place patties onto a baking tray that has been lined with baking paper & bake in a moderately hot oven for 20 minutes turning once during cooking.

Okara muffins

After making my own soymilk on the weekend I was left with quite a lot of okara (the mushy leftover soybeans!) and i was debating what to do with it.
Okara is very nutrient dense so I decided to have some fun & make sure that it got used up!

Chocolate Okara Muffins
1 cup okara
1/4 cup vegetable oil (your choice which one)
1/2 cup soymilk
3/4 cup applesauce
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 cups plain flour
1/4 cup cocoa
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder

Stir the wet ingredients into a large bowl with the okara. In a separate bowl combine the dry ingredients.
Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients - be careful not to overmix as this can make the muffins too dense.
Lightly spray a muffin tin. (makes 10-12 muffins depending on how much of a muffin top you want!!!!)
Pour the mixture into the prepared tin.
If desired, sprinkle with coconut shreds for decoration.
Bake for 20 minutes in a moderate oven.

Nut/Seed "Milo"

I simply missed having a glass of milo too much! Yes, a cadbury hot chocolate is nice - but its not the same! I need some ~crunch~. So I was on a quest to enjoy my crunchy chocolately goodness without any badness in it!!!
This is the best I could do - and might I add, I think its better than milo!

3/4 cup mixed seeds (I use whatever I have on hand - try linseeds, pepitas, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds)
1 cup mixed nuts (your choice - try cashews, almonds, macadamias, pecans, walnuts)
1/2 cup cocoa powder

Optional: 1/4 cup sugar (I use raw sugar) Depends how sweet you like it. I find it really tasty even without any sugar at all

Mix the seeds & nuts in a small bowl.
Grind them in a coffee grinder, in small batches.
Once ground put into a jar & add the cocoa & sugar & shake until well combined.

Put a heaped tablespoon into a glass with soymillk, rice milk or nut milk! Stir well so that the nuts don't sink to the bottom.
Warm or cold!

Store in a glass jar with an air-tight seal. Will keep for several months.

Tofu nuggets

These are totally delicious :-)
Take a little bit of time & preparation but well worth it.

Mix in a small bowl:  (I like to use ramekins!)
1/2 cup soymilk or other non-dairy milk
2 Tablespoons mustard
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast.

Mix in another small bowl:
2 teaspoons of dried herbs of your choice (I like the italian mix ones
3/4 cup wholemeal breadcrumbs
Pepper to taste

Cut a block of hard tofu into cubes.
Using a fork pick up each piece tofu cube and dip it first into the milk mixture, then into the breadcrumb mixture. 
Place crumbed cubes onto a baking sheet.
Bake in 180C oven for 25-30 mins until golden brown.

Raw almond & date balls

These are so easy to make that they can be quickly whizzed up at any time!
They often are a nice afternoon treat for us!

In a food processor combine 1 cup pitted fresh dates with 1 cup almonds & 1 tablespoon agave nectar.
Process until nearly smooth.
Roll into balls with wet hands.
Place on a plate & let set in the fridge for 20 mins before eating.
(It is not necessary to place them in the fridge but they are better after being cooled)

Leftover Stew!!!

Let's face it! There comes a time when we look into the fridge and think "there's nothing here". I made this stew one day upon facing exactly that dilemma! Now I love looking in the fridge and piecing a stew together - this one was particularly good & it can be varied with different veggies as needed (to use up all the leftovers!). So long as you have some risoni & some creamed corn, then you're set!
I loved this stew so much that I make it regularly now!
Its quite involved but its easy & makes for a delicious meal without needing anything flash!

Bring a pot of water to the boil. Add 1 cup risoni & return to the boil, then simmer for 10-12 minutes until soft.
While the risoni is cooking. Chop pieces of cabbage (about 1 cup) & lightly saute in a tablespoon vegetable oil until cooked but still slightly crisp.
Place 2 cups of edamame in a pot of boiling water & simmer for 5 minutes.

You will find that everything is ready at once if you time it right!!! :-)

Simple drain the risoni and return to the pot.
Add the tin of creamed corn and the cabbage.
Drain the edamame and remove the peas from the pod - add the peas to your risoni.
Stir to combine.
Add some flavouring!
My favourites are pictured here & I always have them readily available.
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon chili
2 tablespoons of tahini

Once all ingredients are added - return to heat & warm thoroughly. Stir continuously.
Spoon into pasta bowls. And serve with cracked black pepper.

Eggplant Lasagne

Ok, the real truth is that I'm just too plain lazy somedays to make a real lasagne! But this works perfectly and is really quick for the days when I just don't have the time in the kitchen that I'd like.

You'll need:
1 large eggplant
2 lasagne sheets (or more depending on the size of the dish you use)
1 jar pasta sauce
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1 tablespoon corn flour
1/2 cup soymilk

Slice the eggplant and layer it on the bottom of a roasting dish. (I just happen to have a roasting dish that is the same size as a large lasagne sheet.)
Spread a generous amount of pasta sauce over the eggplant.
Top with a lasagne sheet.
Repeat with 2 layers, or as many as your dish will hold.
In a little bowl combine the nutritional yeast, corn flour & soymilk. Whisk until well combined. (You can precook this bit if you want to thicken it more. This can be done in the microwave to save time.)

Pour the milk mixture on the top of your lasagne.
Cover the lasagne with foil & bake in a hot oven for 20 mins.
Remove foil and bake for another 10 minutes or until lasagne sheets are soft.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Easy Lentil Pie

This is so much easier to make than traditional 'shepherds pie'.
The potatoes cook in the time that the lentils take to prepare, so its much quicker than having to cook each part separately.

You'll need:
For the filling:
1 tin lentils
1/2 cup frozen carrot, peas & corn mix
1 onion, chopped
1 tin crushed tomatoes
1 tablespoon bbq sauce
For the topping:
4 potatoes
garlic flakes
italian herbs

1) Chop the potatoes and put them into a pot with enough water to just cover them. Bring to the boil and then cook for about 12 mins until potatoes are tender.
2) While the potatoes are cooking, drain the lentils & place them in a bowl with the chopped onion, carrot peas & corn mixture. Stir til well mixed. Add the tin of tomatoes & the bbq sauce. Combine well.
3) Use a ceramic baking bowl & place lentil mixture into bottom of bowl - press down.
4) Once the potatoes are ready - drain & transfer to a mixing bowl (i always use the lentil bowl to save on washing up!). Add garlic flakes to taste. Mash until smooth - you can add a drop of soymilk if you desire for better consistency.
5) Place mashed potatoes over the lentil mixture in the oven bowl.
Sprinkly with italian herb mix & place in moderate oven for 25-30 minutes until golden brown on top.

Lentil mixture placed into oven bowl.