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Spinach and coriander stuffed mushrooms

I know stuffed mushrooms are a bit of a veggie cliche, but they can taste so good, so I’m unapologetic about this recipe!
Here the mushrooms are stuffed with spinach, coriander and a few cashew nuts and finished with a ramson, or garlic, oil.
They’re simplicity itself to put together, and so delicious.
We ate them with flatbread, and a butterbean and dill dip.

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Spinach and coriander stuffed mushrooms

makes 10


10 small flat mushrooms, about 6 cm in diameter, cleaned
75 g fresh spinach
30 g fresh coriander
2 tbsp cashew nuts
3 tbsp good oil, plus a little extra to oil the tray
1 tsp dried ramsons, or 1/2 clove of fresh garlic finely chopped
black pepper
a large pinch of salt


Preheat the oven to 200 degrees c. Lightly oil an oven tray.
Remove the stalks from the mushrooms and then arrange them on the tray, gill side up. Wash the spinach and then keeping it wet, transfer to a vented container and microwave for a minute or two until wilted (or you can do this on the hob in a saucepan). Cool the spinach a little and then squeeze out the excess liquid. You can do this through a sieve, or as I do by wrapping it in kitchen roll and squeezing.
On a board chop together the spinach, coriander and mushroom stalks until well combined, then add the cashew nuts.
Mix together the oil, ramsons, salt and pepper.
Divide the spinach mixture between the mushrooms, and then spoon the flavoured oil over the top, about a tsp for each mushroom.
Bake for 10 – 15 minutes until the mushrooms are cooked through.

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Spinach and coriander stuffed mushrooms ready for the oven


By E.

0

Potatoes roasted with carob and spices

This is another one of those dishes that is very brown and not so pretty, but has fairly unusual, and of course delicious flavours!
It’s not a looker, I’ll certainly admit that… but the potatoes, soft in the middle and crunchy, spicy and savoury on the outside, are really really good.
We ate them as part of a vaguely Mexican meal, and they went beautifully with tomato salsa, avocado and corn tortillas.
Plus, this recipe is another fun thing to do with carob powder!

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Potatoes roasted with carob and spices

serves 2


4 smallish potatoes
1/2 tsp coriander seed
1/2 tsp cumin seed
1/2 tsp carob powder
2 tbsp cashew nuts
1/2 tsp tomato powder, or 1 tsp tomato puree
1 tsp dried ramsons or 1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp oil


Preheat the oven to 200 degrees c.
Prick the potatoes with a fork and cook them in the microwave or a pan of water for around 5 minutes until almost cooked through.
Slice into wedges.
While the potatoes are cooking, toast the coriander seed and cumin seed in a dry pan until fragrant – just a minute or two.
Grind the coriander and cumin, carob powder, cashew nuts, tomato powder, ramsons and salt together in an electric grinder or pestle and mortar. If you’re using tomato puree don’t add it to the spice mix, it goes in at the next stage.
Mix the potatoes with the oil (and tomato puree if using), and then sprinkle over the spice mix.
Turn the potatoes over carefully to coat.
Roast for around 25 minutes until they’re lovely and crunchy on the outside.


By A. and E.

5

Creamy curried Jackfruit

Jackfruit is a really interesting ingredient! I’ve never used it fresh (it’s prohibitively expensive round here if you can get it at all…), but the tinned young green jackfruit in brine has a mild flavour and a great texture.
There are lots of recipes around using it for vegan pulled ‘pork’, which is really delicious, but this time I really fancied trying a rich, creamy curry in the style of a korma or pasanda.
The sauce is gorgeous, mildly spiced and very rich! So I’ll be getting 4 servings out of this, although it would be very easy to eat it in 2…
I’ll be having it for work lunches with a rice salad full of lots of veggies, lime and coriander. It’s definitely worth experimenting with jackfruit if you haven’t already, the texture is great and it picks up flavours beautifully. A while ago I made a simple stew with jackfruit, mushrooms and carrots which was lovely, and one I think I should revisit!
Just make sure not to buy the ripe jackfruit in syrup, that would not be good in a savoury recipe…

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Creamy curried jackfruit

makes 4 servings


1 large tin of young green jackfruit in brine, drained (280 g when drained), cut into small wedges
8 cherry tomatoes, chopped (or 2 regular sized tomatoes) including juice and pulp
2 tsp oil
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground cassia
1/2 tsp ground coriander seed
1/4 tsp ground fennel seed
1 bay leaf, ground (or put it in whole and remember to remove it before serving)
4 cardamom pods, seeds only, crushed
1 tsp grated fresh turmeric, or 1/4 tsp powder
2 tbsp grated fresh ginger
1/4 tsp asafoetida
1 tbsp dried methi (fenugreek) leaves
4 tbsp ground almonds
1 tbsp tomato paste
200 ml coconut milk
2 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped (or use frozen, as I did this time. It’s not as nice as fresh but it’s pretty good)


Heat the oil in a high sided frying pan (with a lid) or saucepan on a medium low heat. Add the cumin, cassia, coriander, fennel, bay and cardamom. Cook, stirring all the time for 1 minute.
Add the tomatoes, turmeric, ginger, asafoetida and methi and cook for a further 3 – 5 minutes, stirring often, until the tomatoes have started to break down.
Next add the tomato paste, almonds and jackfruit and give everything a good stir. Mix in the coconut milk and simmer gently, covered, for around 15 minutes.
As the jackfruit heats through it will soften, and with a little pressure from a wooden spoon, some parts of the fruit will separate into strands. Sprinkle the coriander over the top.


By E.

5

Crystal rolls with dipping sauce

The rice paper wrappers have been lurking in my cupboard for a while, and I’ve been slightly hesitant over using them, now that I have, I really shouldn’t have been worried! You soak each individual wrapper just before you use it in warm water for 2 seconds, then they are surprisingly robust to both roll up and eat.

  

The filling was going to be my lunch salad for today, but this has transformed the lunch into something so much more sophisticated… And pretty!

Makes 4

Ingredients:

For the rolls

4 Vietnamese rice paper wrappers

A handful of baby spinach, the smaller the leaves the better

1 tomato

Half a red pepper

50g edamame beans (shelled)

Half an avocado

For the dipping sauce

1 tsp finely chopped ginger

Half teaspoon finely chopped coriander

2 teaspoon tamari

Juice of half a lemon

Quarter teaspoon apple cider vinegar

The pulp from the tomato
Start by assembling the dipping sauce so the flavours have time to meld add all the ingredients for the sauce together, adding the pulp from the tomato to it. Leave to stand.

Slice the avocado, tomato and red pepper lengthwise.

Dip a wrapper in warm water for 2 seconds until softening, place on a flat surface and add small quantities of each filling, I found about 6 beans, one or two pieces of tomato, one piece of avocado, 2 or 3 spinach leaves and one piece of red pepper about right for my wraps.

  
Roll up the wrap like you would a burrito!

Serve with the dipping sauce.
By A

2

Gluten free, vegan, almond biscuits

Ahh biscuits.. It’s cold, icy, and miserable outside but I don’t mind at all as I’ve got these yummy scrummy biscuits for dipping in hot tea!

 

ready to be dunked

 
They are really simple to make and bake very quickly, really, from the point of sitting and thinking to oneself ‘boo, I have no biscuits’ in a mere 15 minutes you can have biscuits!

Makes 12.

Ingredients:

80g cornflour

60g ground almonds

10g tapioca flour

Quarter teaspoon xanthan gum (not essential, but does make the biscuit a little more robust)

Pinch salt

50 g coconut oil

60g golden syrup or agave syrup

25g dark chocolate to decorate

Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees centigrade

Start by mixing together the cornflour, almonds, tapioca flour, xanthan gum and salt.

Weigh the coconut oil and golden syrup into a bowl and microwave on short blasts till the coconut oil has melted, the two will remain seperate, don’t worry!

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix together to form a soft dough.

Roll out to about 5mm thick and either using a cutter or a knife, cut into 12 biscuits.

Place on a lined baking sheet and put in the oven for between 6 and 7 minutes, or until the biscuits are turning golden.

  

Take the biscuits out of the oven and transfer to a cooling rack.

Melt the chocolate in short blasts in the microwave, the using a spoon artfully dribble chocolate over the top of the biscuits. 

By A

6

Celeriac and horseradish coleslaw

Just a quick one today! There’s still fresh horseradish root left from our Christmas pie recipe, so I made this coleslaw the other day to go with our work lunches.
It’s punchy, crunchy and tasty!

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Celeriac and horseradish coleslaw

makes 6 servings


for the vegetables
250 g celeriac
190 g red cabbage
1 celery stick
1 carrot
5 cm fresh horseradish root
for the dressing
4 tbsp of a neutral flavoured oil, I used vegetable oil
3 tbsp soya flour
120 ml soya milk
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tbsp cider vinegar
1/2 tsp celery seed
1/8 tsp sugar
a pinch of salt


Shred the cabbage and celery thinly, and grate the celeriac, carrot and horseradish. I used a food processor which made it ever so quick, but you could do it with a sharp knife and a box grater too.
Whisk together the dressing ingredients, or whizz them up in an immersion blender attachment. The dressing should thicken and be smooth.
Combine the vegetables with the dressing and refrigerate, covered for at least an hour to let the flavours come together. The coleslaw keeps well for up to 3 days in the refrigerator, and the cabbage softens nicely as it sits.


By E.

6

Veg filled pancake wrap

Okay, it’s a rubbish title, but a tasty, quick, colourful and healthy food!

I’m calling it a pancake wrap, as it really is part way between the two, it’s made out of a batter, but is a bit more substantial than a pancake!

The pancake wrap holds together well, and the filling is full of the tastes of summer! Sweet carrot, peppery rocket, bright tomatoes,crunchy celery, creamy avocado.. the tangy dressing really lifts the wrap and pulls the flavours together.

  

 
I’m using a mix of flours for the wrap but a pre-mixed gluten free plain flour should work in the same way.

The side I’m serving it with is our crispy potatoes to make a really filling meal.

Serves 2.

Ingredients:

For the pancake wrap

50g potato flour

40g brown rice flour

10g tapioca flour

100ml water

1tsp oil (I used sunflower)

Half a teaspoon dried tarragon (not essential but very tasty)

Pinch of salt

For the veg

1 carrot scrubbed and cut into strips with a vegetable peeler

Large handful of Rocket

1 celery stick chopped

1 tomato sliced

Half an avocado sliced

About 2 tablespoons fresh coriander leaves

For the dressing

1tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Juice of half a lime

1 teaspoon cider vinegar

Pinch of salt

Heat a frying pan.

Mix together all the dry ingredients for the pancake wrap, so the flours are incorporated with each other, then whisk in the wet ingredients. Pour half of the mix into the hot pan and swirl round quickly to cover as much of the pan as possible, cook till the top looks dry then flip and cook for another couple of minutes.

Whisk together all the ingredients for the dressing.

Plate up by piling the veg onto the pancake wrap, then drizzle over the dressing and roll up for eating!

  

By A

0

Savoury sandwich filling

This may seem slightly silly, however there is a very popular sandwich filling in the North of England (and possibly elsewhere too!) called cheese savoury. It’s just finely chopped veg and grated cheap cheese swaddled in mayonnaise, it’s crunchy, filling and colourful, and should be very easy to veganise.

ready to be thickly slathered on bread..

As I want the mayo to bind the veg and have a presence of its own I’m using a silken tofu and oil mixture which does give a tasty and thick end result.

The cheese component, I’m being lazy and just using a bit of nutritional yeast but a mix of blitzed up cashews and nutritional yeast would provide a bit more flavour.
For the Mayo

100g silken tofu

100ml sunflower oil

2 tsp mustard

2 tsp lemon juice

For the filling

1 medium carrot

2 sticks of celery

1 spring onion

Half a red pepper

2 tbsp nutritional yeast

Salt and pepper to taste
To make the mayonnaise, use a stick blender to mix together the tofu, mustard and lemon juice, when combined slowly add the oil mixing all the time, keep an eye on the thickness as depending on the tofu you may need more or less oil.

Grate the carrot and finely chop the rest of the veg.

Mix about half of the mayonnaise through the veg with the nutritional yeast, then add salt and pepper  to taste, it’s simple but yummy!

By A

0

Tofu noodles with beans and vegetables

Here’s another recipe using paper tofu, quite different from Alex’s cannelloni, but just as satisfying to eat!
Here I’ve cut the tofu into noodles, and used it in a salad. It worked ever so well! The noodles don’t need cooking, and have a very pleasing, slightly chewy texture.
The accompanying beans and vegetables were a bit of a mish mash of things I had in the fridge and cupboard… And although very tasty, this is all about the tofu noodles!
They’ll take lots of different flavours, and I’m really looking forward to getting my hands on another pack of paper tofu for more experimenting.

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tofu noodles with beans and vegetables

serves 2


1 sheet of paper tofu, (about 25 x 20 cm)
1 400 g tin of borlotti beans, drained and rinsed (240 g drained weight)

100 g mushrooms, sliced
1 tsp oil
100 g flower sprouts, washed
75 g brined cactus slices (nopales)
2 tbsp chipotle in adobo
1 1/2 tbsp cider vinegar
4 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
1 watermelon radish, sliced and each slice quartered (or 4 regular radishes)


Heat the oil in a saucepan on a medium heat and saute the mushrooms until cooked through. Remove to a bowl.
Put the flower sprouts in the saucepan and add boiling water to cover. Simmer for around 6 minutes, until tender. Drain.
Turn the heat off, and put the mushrooms back in the pan along with the flower sprouts, beans, cactus, chipotle, cider vinegar and coriander. Slice the paper tofu into 2 pieces 12.5 x 20 cm each, roll each one up and slice thinly into noodles. Add them to the pan, and toss everything together. Serve garnished with the slices of watermelon radish.


 

By E.

1

Sweet potato, leek and bean mash with herby flower sprouts and courgettes

Just a quick simple meal this one, and full of nutrients. The mash combines chick peas and butter beans with sweet potato and leeks to make a beautiful pale orange mash, and it’s tasty too!

Combined with flower sprouts and courgettes sauteed with thyme and rosemary, it’s going to make a great work lunch tomorrow. But would be lovely as a main meal too!

The chickpeas and butterbeans make a really good combination, but you could easily substitute other beans

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Sweet potato, leek and bean mash with herby flower sprouts and courgettes

makes 4 servings


 

for the mash

1 sweet potato, peeled and diced

1 leek, halved lengthwise and sliced

1 400 g tin of butterbeans, drained (240g when drained)

1 400 g tin of chickpeas, drained (240 g when drained)

2 tbsp tahini

juice of half a lemon

salt

for the flower sprouts and courgettes

200 g flower sprouts, washed, and halved if large

4 small courgettes, sliced

2 sprigs of fresh thyme

1 tsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped

1 – 2 tbsp olive oil


 

Bring a saucepan of salted water to the boil and add the sweet potato. Simmer for around 5 minutes, until starting to soften. Add the chickpeas and butterbeans, bring back to a simmer and cook for a further 3 minutes.

While the sweet potato is cooking, microwave the leeks (covered and vented) with a splash of water for 2 minutes, stir, then a further minute. The leeks should be soft.

When the sweet potato and beans are done, drain and then add to the leeks (keeping any cooking liquid in the leeks), along with the tahini, lemon juice and salt. Mash roughly.

For the vegetables, heat the oil in a saucepan and then add the flower sprouts, courgettes and herbs. Saute for around 10 minutes until the courgettes are browning and the flower sprouts are just tender. I used the same pan I’d cooked the sweet potato in, but to speed it up you could use a separate one and cook them at the same time.

 

By E.