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Archive for the ‘Dips’ Category

I know, it’s been a while…But this was worth the wait, I promise! This recipe is founded on a dish my Mum used to make, which was a family staple in the house – Sausage Pasta Bake. She would use English Pork Sausages and crumble them into a Tomato sauce, baked with Macaroni and covered with melted Cheese. It was absolutely delicious and I’ve dreamt of it many times since I’ve become Vegan…and now I’ve finally attempted to make my own version & it came out really well! I’ve spent the last few months in LA (Vegan capital of the world!), and have therefore been taking advantage of the abundance of faux meat & dairy products. The Soy Chorizo I used in this recipe is one of my favourite finds, but you could easily use any other Vegan Sausage and just crumble it – the only difference is that this one adds a nice spice to the dish. This bake can be whipped up in about 30 minutes flat, but comes out tasting & looking like you’ve spent a good couple of hours slaving away in the kitchen

 

Ingredients:

1 large clove of Garlic, minced

1/2 small Red Onion, diced

1 cup Mushrooms, chopped

1/2 medium Red Pepper, diced

splash of Red Wine

1 cup crumbled Soy Chorizo, or other Veg Sausage/Mince (I use Trader Joes)

handful of chopped Black Olives

tin of Fire Roasted Tomatoes (optional: with green Chillies)

dash of dried Basil & Oregano

bag of Fusilli or Macaroni Pasta (I use Brown Rice Pasta)

1 cup of grated Vegan Cheddar Cheese of choice (I used Daiya)

 

Method:

– Boil a pot of water for the Pasta, and cook until al dente and rinse. Preheat oven to 430F.

– Heat Oil in a medium sized saucepan and sauté Onions until browned. Add Mushrooms, Garlic and Red Peppers and continue to sauté, adding a dash of Red Wine. Add minced Chorizo, Olives and Herbs and cook a few minutes more. Then add the tinned Tomatoes, with a little water if needed, and allow to simmer for a few minutes.

– Add bolognaise sauce to cooked Pasta, mix in a handful of the grated Cheese, then pour into a square baking dish. Sprinkle the top with the remaining Cheese to cover the whole dish, and place in the oven for about 10-15 mins. or until Cheese has melted.

*Serve with a Spinach Salad and dig in…


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Raw foodism is very popular these days, and it’s not surprising: how can eating uncooked, unprocessed foods not be good for you?! Food eaten in its natural state becomes much more easily available to your body in terms of nutrients, and can be digested alot faster than cooked foods – hence, instant energy! But sometimes Raw food recipes can seem a bit daunting, with all the soaking, sprouting & special equipment needed…These crackers, however, are pretty simple – no fancy processor needed (a simple blender should do the trick), no soaking or sprouting, and they can even be made in your oven if you don’t own a dehydrator! Please note, though, that for the crackers to still be considered Raw they need to be cooked in 46°C (115°F) or less – my oven only goes as low as 80°C, but I still did a batch in there anyway and they turned out delicious (took about 3 1/2 hrs), and tasted almost exactly the same as the batch I put in my dehydrator. The Hummus recipe is not Raw, it’s just something I made to go with the crackers – I’m still unsure as to whether I would make it again, but I have included the recipe at the end just in case you want to give it a try. This recipe comes from You Won’t Believe It’s Vegan!: 200 Recipes for Simple and Delicious Animal-Free Cuisine, and I’m so glad I decided to page through this book again because I’ve realised there is a whole chapter on Raw Food recipes! I plan to try the Apple Pie recipe very soon…

Ingredients: (makes 2 trays)

1/2 cup Ground Flaxseeds

1/2 cup Buckwheat Groats or chopped Almonds

1/2 cup raw Pumpkin Seeds

1/2 cup raw Sunflower Seeds

1/2 cup grated Carrot

1 cup finely chopped Sundried Tomatoes

1/4 cup raw Sesame Seeds (I used Black)

3/4 tsp. dried Thyme

3/4 tsp. dried Basil

3/4 tsp. Garlic powder

3/4 tsp. Onion powder

1/4 cup Nutritional Yeast (optional)

1 1/2 cups Water

1/2 tsp. Sea Salt

 

Method:

Combine all the cracker ingredients in a bowl, cover with water and allow to absorb for 15 minutes or so.

– Put mixture into a processor or blender and run until mostly smooth with some texture.

– Spread mixture thinly onto a Teflex deydrator sheet (or a lined baking tray), and score crackers into 2 inch squares. Place in deydrator for 8 hrs (or oven at lowest temperature for about 3 -5 hrs). Flip over and continue to deydrate for an additional 4 hrs or until crackers are crunchy.

* PS: These are seriously tasty by the way! They were brought along as snacks in the cinema, as well as for lunch with some veggies and dip…Very addictive!

 

Beetroot Hummus

Ingredients:

1/2 Onion, diced

1 Tblsp. Cumin, ground

2 medium cooked Beetroots, chopped

1 tin of Chickpeas, drained

1 Tblsp. Tahini

2-3 Tblsp. plain Soy Yoghurt

2 cloves of Garlic, minced

2 Tblsp. Lemon Juice

3-4 Tblsp. Olive Oil

Water, as needed

 

Method:

Heat a little Oil in a frying pan and cook Onion for 2 -3 mins. until soft. Add Cumin and cook for a further 1 minute, until fragrant.

In a processor, or blender, process Beetroot, Onion, Chickpeas, Tahini, Yoghurt, Lemon Juice and Garlic until smooth. With the motor running add Oil in a steady stream. Process until combined, adding Water if needed.

(from Vegie Food (Chunky Food))

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Store-bought Pesto almost always contains Parmesan Cheese, so I resort to making my own – luckily, it’s extremely easy to make! You do, however, need a small food processor as a blender doesn’t work very well (unless you have a really snazzy one…), and a good quality Olive Oil helps too. For this pasta dish I mixed my Pesto with some Silken Tofu for a Cream Cheese-y affect, but you can also just keep as is. It’s so tasty you won’t miss the Parmesan, I promise! Add whatever vegetables you like to this, but I think Olives, Sun-dried Tomatoes & Artichokes make a great addition to any Italian meal…This is simple, delicious & easy to make, and if you already have the Pesto pre-made you can whip this up in less than 10 minutes.

Ingredients:

3-4 generous Tblsp.  Creamy Pesto (recipe to follow)

1 pkt. fusilli Brown Rice Pasta (or any other pasta you prefer)

1/2 Red Onion, sliced

1 clove Garlic, minced

2 Portobello Mushrooms, chopped

1/2 Zucchini, julienned into long, thin strips and halved

1/2 Red Bellpepper, thinly sliced

a few re-hydrated Sun-dried Tomatoes, sliced

handful of Kalamata Olives, halved

3 Tblsp. chopped Artichokes, from jar in Olive Oil

1 Tblsp. Parsley

 

Method:

– Boil the Pasta according to packet instructions until Al dente. Drain, rinse and drizzle with a little bit of Olive Oil to prevent sticking.

– In a large Frying Pan, sauté Onions in Olive Oil until beginning to brown. Add Garlic & Mushrooms until Mushrooms begin to release moisture. Add Zucchini & Peppers and sauté until beginning to soften. Add Olives, Sun-dried Tomatoes & Artichokes and mix well.

– Add drained Pasta to the pan and stir a few times until everything is combined, and Pasta is heated through. Mix in Pesto, stirring a few more times and then take off heat.

– Fold in Parsley and serve.

Basil-Parsley Pesto: (adapted from Nonna’s Italian Kitchen: Delicious Homestyle Vegan Cuisine (Healthy World Cuisine)

1 1/2 cups fresh Basil leaves

1/2 cup fresh Italian Parsley leaves

2 cloves Garlic

1 Tblsp. Pine Nuts, toasted

1 Tblsp. slivered Almonds/raw Almonds/Pumpkin Seeds

1/2 tsp Salt

squeeze Lemon Juice (1/4 Tblsp)

4 Tblsp. Olive Oil (1/4 cup)

* 1/2 asceptic box of Firm Silken Tofu

 

Place everything in a food processor, and let it run until a paste forms. Refrigerate if not using.

* For Creamy Pesto: Add Tofu once the Pesto is finished, and process again until smooth. Keep in the fridge to firm up until using

 

 

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Here is a basic Hummus recipe that always hits the spot! I used Great Northern beans because I find they are softer and therefore give a creamier result, but I then added some Chickpeas to bulk it up. If you can’t find those around your area, this works just as well with only one can of Chickpeas…The spiced oil isn’t necessary but adds a nice zing, and makes your Hummus look more authentic. Enjoy with some raw veggie crudites, or some toasted Pita – good on Sandwiches too, instead of Mayo!

Ingredients:

1 can Great Northern Beans, drained and rinsed

1/2 cup Chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1 -2 cloves Garlic, minced (depending on size)

2 Tblsp. Olive Oil

3 Tblsp. Lemon Juice, fresh

1 Tblsp. Tahini (Sesame Paste)

1 tsp. Sea Salt

1 Tblsp. fresh Parsley, chopped

1/2 tsp. ground Cumin

1/2 tsp. Paprika

2 Tblsp. Water (if needed – depending on desired thickness)

 

Method:

– Add all ingredients (except water) into Food Processor/Blender and pulse until combined and smooth. If too thick, add water slowly while machine still running.

– Pour into bowl and refrigerate until needed. Before serving, drizzle with Spiced Oil.

Spiced Oil:

1 -2 Tblsp. Olive Oil

1/4 tsp. Paprika

1/4 tsp. Cumin

dash of Cayenne

Method:

Heat Oil in Pan and mix in spices until combined. Remove and drizzle over Hummus.

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