Thursday, 1 May 2014

Vegan Baking Guide

Noticed this vegan baking guide on One Green Planet. It will definitely come in handy for veganising some old favourite baked goods!

On another note, I've sorely negelected this blog for some time now! I have a bit more time on my hands this year, so look forward to posting more recipes and photos soon.

Thursday, 23 January 2014

A Beautiful Recipe for Slow Cooked Broccoli

Following the recipe to a tee, I served the broccoli with spaghetti and Vegusto piquant cheese. It was an incredibly simple, but absolutely beautiful meal.

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Lentil Bolognese

This recipe will make enough bolognese to feed an army! Around 12 generous serves; however it does freeze very well. Serve with Vegusto No-Moo Piquant cheese.

Olive oil
2 onions, finely diced
3 cloves garlic
1 stick of celery, grated
2 carrots, grated
375g dried red lentils
2 tins chopped tomato
1L veggie stock
1-2 Tbsp tomato paste
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried thyme
3 bay leaves
Rind of 1 lemon
Dash worcestershire sauce (about a teaspoon)
A good dash of red wine
Salt and pepper to taste

Fry onions and garlic in the olive oil for a few minutes. Add celery and carrots and fry until soft, around 15 minutes. Add lentils and tinned tomato and stir through. Add the rest of the ingredients, and bring to the boil. Lower heat, cover and simmer for around 45-50 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes or so, until the lentils have cooked. Add water or more stock to the mix as the lentils are cooking if it gets too thick. Remove bay leaves and lemon rind to serve.

Friday, 23 December 2011

Cumquat Marmalade Tea Cake

In my garden I had an ever fruiting cumquat tree. Upon deciding to move, I thought I should finally get around to making cumquat marmalade while I had the chance. I moved last weekend, so this recipe came from 1/2 a jar of marmalade I had left and couldn't bare to throw out, and the odds and ends of my pantry. The cake turned out to be delicious! Perfect with tea. Cumquat marmalade and mandarin juice can easily be swapped for any citrus fruit, but if you can get your hands on cumquat marmalade I highly recommend it.

Cumquat Marmalade from Stephanie Alexander's The Cooks Companion.

3 cups wholemeal flour (plain would be fine too, but the coarser texture of the wholemeal worked really well)
2 Tbsp cornflour
1/2 cup caster sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
Zest of 1 lemon
2 cups mandarin juice
2/3 cups vegetable oil 
2/3 cup maple syrup
1 Tbsp vanilla
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

for the glaze
1/2 cup cumquat marmalade
1 Tbsp vanilla
1 tsp water

Line two round 9" cake tins, and preheat the oven to 180 degrees.

In a large bowl combine the flours, sugar, baking powder and soda, salt and lemon zest. In a separate bowl whisk together the juice, oil, maple syrup and vanilla. Add the wet mixture to the dry and whisk thoroughly.

Pour half the batter into one of the lined cake tins. This will be the cake at the bottom of your layer cake. To the remaining mixture, stir through the apple cider vinegar. Quickly pour the batter into the second cake tin, and bake both cakes for around 30 minutes.

When the cakes have been removed from the oven, cool slightly. Glaze the cakes while they are still warm, but not too hot.

To make the glaze, heat the marmalade, vanilla and water in a saucepan until the marmalade just starts to bubble. Place the bottom cake layer on a plate, and pierce a few times with a toothpick or a small knife. Pour a bit less than half the glaze on the bottom layer cake. Place the second cake on top of the first, and pour the remaining glaze over the top.

Monday, 12 December 2011

Blueberry & Maple Nut Toasted Muesli

3 cups oats
1/2 cup macadamia nuts
1/2 cup hazelnuts
1/2 cup pecans
1/2 cup almonds
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/3 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup soy milk
1 Tbsp non dairy butter
1 tsp vanilla
4 pitted dates
1/2 cup dried apple, roughly chopped
1/2 cup dried blueberry
2 dates, pitted and roughly chopped

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Roughly chop the nuts. On two lined baking trays evenly spread the oats and the nuts, and sprinkle with cinnamon and nutmeg.
In a saucepan over a high heat combine the maple syrup, sugar, oil, milk, butter, vanilla and 4 dates. When the mixture starts to bubble, and the liquids combine, turn the heat down. Heat, stirring constantly, incorporating the dates into the syrup. When the syrup is smooth, pour over each tray, and toss the oats until they are all coated in the mixture.
Place in the oven and bake, tossing the oats every ten minutes so that the muesli cooks evenly. Remove from the oven after about half an hour, when the oats are golden in colour. Allow to cool on the baking trays.
When the oats have cooled, stir through the apple, blueberry and remaining dates. Store in an airtight container.

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Chocolate Hazelnut Cupcakes

I can't seem to stick to a recipe at all. These are my take on Hazelnut cupcakes, loosely based on the recipe from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World. Makes 12 cupcakes.

1 cup plain flour
1 cup hazelnut meal
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
60g dark chocolate, grated or finely chopped
2/3 cup soy or almond milk (hazelnut would be better, but it's $10/L damn it)
2 Tbsp flax meal
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup hazelnut oil (or any vegetable oil)
1/3 cup maple syrup
1 Tbsp vanilla extract 

for the icing
1/2 cup hazelnuts
1 cup icing sugar
1/3 cup cocoa powder 
40g dark chocolate
2 Tbsp soy or almond milk

In a medium sized bowl mix together the milk with the flax meal and the apple cider vinegar, and leave aside.
In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, hazelnut meal baking powder and soda, salt, brown sugar and grated chocolate.
To the milk mixture add the oil, maple syrup and vanilla, and mix well.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly.
Fill lined cupcake tins 3/4 way full, and bake for 20-25 minutes at 180 degrees.

To make the icing, sift together the icing sugar and cocoa powder. Roast the hazelnuts for around 10 minutes (I popped them into the oven with the cupcakes for the last 10 minutes of baking). Let them cool and using a tea towel, rub to remove the skins. Alternatively, a much easier option is to buy roasted hazelnuts! But raw was what I had. Roughly chop the hazelnuts and add to the icing sugar. Heat the milk in the microwave until it is warm enough to melt the chocolate (10-20 seconds, depending on how good your microwave is), and add the chocolate. Stir until the chocolate melts. Add to the icing sugar mix and stir until combined. Ice the cooled cupcakes.

Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Banana, Date & Pecan Muffins

Grinding the oats and pecans into a flour came from a recipe for banana muffins on VganJar. Just pulse the pecans and oats together in the food processor a couple of times until you have a coarse meal, being careful not to overdo it because you'll end up with a paste. This recipe is based on Isobelle's at VganJar.

1/2 cup pecans, ground into a flour
1/2 cup oats, ground into a flour
1 cup wholemeal flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp of salt
3/4 cup soy milk
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup maple syrup 
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
really ripe bananas
5 dates, pitted and roughly chopped
1/2 cup pecans, roughly chopped

Add the apple cider vinegar to the soy milk, and leave aside to thicken.

In a large bowl mix together the flours, the baking powder and soda, and the salt.

In another bowl, mash the bananas really well with the maple syrup, vegetable oil and vanilla extract.

Add the soy milk to the flours, mix well, and then add the banana mix. When it is all incorporated, mix through the dates and the pecans. 

Spoon into a muffin tin. For 12 regular sized muffins, bake for about 20 minutes (or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean), and for 6 jumbo muffins bake for around 30 minutes.

They're really good straight from the oven, or warmed, with a dairy free butter, and I could imagine they'd keep pretty well too (mine were all eaten within a day!).

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Almond & Lentil Quinoa Salad

1 tomato, finely diced
1/2 Spanish onion, finely diced
2 Tbsp. parsley leaves, roughly chopped
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
Juice and rind of one lemon
3/4 cup almonds
1 can lentils, rinsed and drained, or 400g cooked lentils
3/4 cup uncooked quinoa
Salt and pepper to taste

In a saucepan, cook quinoa according to the directions on the packet.
While the quinoa is cooking, place almonds in an oven preheated to 180 degrees, and roast for around 10 minutes, until they are just starting to brown.
Let the almonds and quinoa cool.
When the quinoa has cooled, in a large bowl combine the remaining olive oil, lemon juice and rind, parsley, salt and pepper.
Mix in the onion, tomato, quinoa, lentils and almond until well combined. Serve chilled. You can eat it at room temperature, but it tastes that much better chilled.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Earl Grey Tea Cupcakes with Lavender Frosting

These cupcakes are pretty temperamental, but after a couple of not so successful attempts and a bit of tweaking this recipe works a treat. If you're going to make these I'd recommend sticking to the recipe to avoid ending up with a sticky, doughy mess! If you can't come across any lavender for the frosting, or lavender's just not your thing, they also taste good with a simple lemon icing. Makes 12 cupcakes.

1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup caster sugar
1/2 cup non-dairy butter, melted
1 tsp. baking soda
pinch of salt
1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
rind of one lemon
1/2 cup boiling water
5 earl grey tea bags
1 3/4 cups plain flour
1/2 cup almond (or any non-dairy) milk
2 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Line the cupcake tin, and lightly grease.

Place 4 of the tea bags in the boiling water, and leave to the side to infuse.

Mix together the sugars, salt and melted butter until well combined, and the sugar starts to dissolve a little. Mix in the baking soda, vanilla extract and lemon rind. Remove the tea bags from the water, squeezing out as much liquid as you can. Add the tea to the mixture, as well as the tea leaves from the remaining tea bag (just tear it open and add to the mix). When the liquid is well combined, slowly add one cup of flour and mix well. When adding the remaining 3/4 cup flour, alternate with the almond milk, a little bit at a time, until both the milk and flour have been incorporated, without over mixing. Then add the vinegar, stirring after each tablespoon is added.

It is quite a thin batter, but it will sort itself out in the oven! Fill the cupcake liners so that they're 3/4 full, and bake for 20-25 minutes, until a toothpick or a knife poked in the middle comes out clean.

Allow to cool before Icing.

Lavender Frosting

1 Tbsp. non-dairy butter
1 cup icing sugar
3 Tbsp. almond milk
5 or 6 sprigs of fresh lavender or 2 tsp. dried lavender
A couple of drops purple food colouring (without it, the lavender makes the icing a go funny brown colour!)

To dry the fresh lavender, spread the flowers over a paper towel in a microwave over, and heat for 1 minute on the highest setting. If the lavender is not yet dry, microwave again in 30 second increments until it is brittle. When it is done, rub between your palms to break up the buds.

Heat the almond milk in a small glass in the microwave. When it is hot, but not boiling, add 2 tsp. dried lavender, and allow to infuse for 5-10 minutes. Strain with a tea strainer, and discard the lavender.

Cream the butter and the icing sugar. Add the lavender infused almond milk, one teaspoon at a time. You will not need to add all of the milk, as it will taste very floral. So continue adding the milk to taste; 1-2 tablespoons for a nice subtle lavender flavour, or 2-3 for a more intense flavour. You may need to add a little more icing sugar if the mixture gets too runny. Finally, add a couple of drops of purple food colouring, and when it has all been well combined, ice the cooled cupcakes.

Lemon Icing

1 cup icing sugar
3-4 tsp. lemon juice

Add the lemon juice to the icing sugar, one teaspoon at a time. It will be quite a thin mixture, so that when icing the cakes it will drip down the sides a little. However if it is too watery, add a bit more icing sugar. Ice the cupcakes, and leave (in the fridge if you would like) for for the icing to set.