I posted my recipe for vegan whipped cream a while ago. I thought it was about time to post some more of my recipes for dairy alternatives. This cream serves a different purpose to the whipped kind; rather than for decorating cakes and pastries, these are more of a spoonable consistency and are great for cooking, as well as a garnish or accompaniment to sweet and savoury dishes. The best part is they're really quick and easy to make, and you don't need a high-speed blender - I just use a regular stick blender.Read More
Before we get to the yummy food, I'd just like to mention that I have finally put up my About Page. I should have done it a long time ago, but I really struggle with writing about myself. My Google Analytics tell me that little Magic Jelly Story book on my sidebar gets clicked a lot, so it was pretty remiss of me to leave that page empty for so long! Now, on to dessert... Whenever I buy a new vegan cookbook I go straight to the index to check out the cheesecake recipes. I am always so disappointed if the recipe starts with "2 tubs Tofutti cream cheese" - I just really prefer making things from scratch. It's so much more satisfying, usually tastes better, & you know exactly what the ingredients are.Read More
I've been experimenting with creating a vegan whipped cream recipe. My aim was to make non-dairy cream without a strong soy, almond or coconut flavour, that tastes mild & creamy so that it enhances rather than competes with the dishes it accompanies. Also, I wanted to make sure that once it's whipped, it's stable & doesn't deflate (I haven't used gums or stabilisers), & also has the right weight & mouthfeel. Most importantly, I wanted it to have the freshness of dairy cream - light, sweet, fluffy, melting & clean on the palate - not greasy like the non-dairy whips that contain hydrogenated oils. Although this cream is wonderfully rich & very close to dairy cream in taste & texture, it is not at all heavy or cloying.
My whipped cream recipe is based on that versatile little nut, the cashew, but unlike most cashew cream recipes, this one is not raw. By cooking the cashew mixture, it thickens & emulsifies, becoming sweeter & milder in flavour. A real bonus for people like me, who don't happen to own a high-power blender, is that for this recipe you only need a regular stick blender & food processor to achieve beautifully smooth cream (& a hand mixer for whipping). This recipe is also soy & gluten free (depending on the brand of margarine you use).Read More
Okay, it's not very traditional, but since I was leaving out the eggs & tuna anyway, I thought I'd play around with the classic Nicoise Salad & make it more of a hearty, substantial winter salad. I don't eat as many salads in cold weather as I do in summer, which is silly, because I love salad. Sorry this isn't a proper recipe with quantities, but I was winging it. I'm sure it would be easy to reproduce, & it's well worth it, because it is delicious. Don't expect to be hungry for at least a week afterwards - this is one big salad, most definitely a meal in itself.
There are quite a few different components, but none of them are difficult or terribly time-consuming. The good thing is, you can make extra couscous, dressing, macadamia crust, etc. & have it again the next day!Read More
I've been making a cauliflower (sometimes broccoli), almond & chili pasta sauce for years. I used to load it with parmesan cheese & cream, but here I've veganised it & turned it into a lasagne. The crumbed topping is my very favourite cheese alternative for gratins & other bakes, stuffed vegetables, & even pizza. It gives the salty, savoury yumminess that cheese provides, with the added bonus of some texture & crunch. I think it's much more delicious than gloopy ol' cheese! You can alter the flavours for different recipes, adding lemon zest, cayenne pepper, basil instead of parsley - whatever you like.
This recipe is simple enough, but a little time consuming (as lasagne can be), so it's more of a special occasion dish. The lasagne is served on a puddle of garlicky tomato sauce, & although it's an extra step that you might not want to bother with, it's really worth it, because the creamy lasagne is complimented so well by the tangy, fresh tomatoes. You can whip the marinara sauce up quickly while the lasagne is in the oven. Recipe below...Read More
Don't you just love stuffed things? Stuffed breads, dumplings, vegetables, etc? I think it's the element of surprise, like unwrapping a present. In the last couple of weeks I've made pierogies for the very first time, stuffed with mushrooms & Boursin-style cream "cheese" (recipe for the cheese is here - this truly is the best vegan cream cheese I've ever tasted), a glazed seitan roast with lemon, basil & cashew stuffing (so good thinly sliced on sandwiches), & I also attempted a veganised Paneer Kulcha, which might not be the most authentic version, but they are delicious, so I thought I'd share my recipe. Mine turned out a little thinner than they're supposed to be, but I didn't mind that actually. The bread is light, flaky & tender & the tofu "cheese" is flavoured with cumin, fresh coriander (cilantro), chilli & onion. Yum! Recipe below.Read More
Two blog posts in one day - woo! I had already written this recipe out for friends, so I thought I'd share it as it's really delicious (even if I say so myself) - I hope you enjoy it!
This is by no means a traditional Laksa recipe, it's my own version using commercially prepared curry & laksa paste & whatever vegetables I happen to have handy. I like to make Laksa when I'm feeling a little under the weather or if I haven't been eating properly, as it's loaded with lovely fresh vegetables. It's very spicy & warming (fantastic if you have a cold because it really helps clear your head & chest) yet because it's also really zingy & zesty, I find it's just as nice in the hot weather too. It's very filling, most definitely a meal in itself.Read More
There are a number of vegan cheeses on the market, but they're rather expensive, & some of them contain ingredients I don't particularly like (such as hydrogenated oils & soy protein isolate). Then there are the tantalising sounding brands that aren't available in Australia, such as Daiya, Vegusto & Dr. Cow (I wish I could try them!). Anyway, I do like to make things from scratch & enjoy a challenge, so I set about making my own vegan cheese recipe that slices, grates, melts, & of course, tastes good too.
I've got the melting bit covered, as you can see from my photos below, & it's a little stretchy & oozy (perfect for toast & pizzas). However, it is a rather soft cheese - at room temperature, rather like a camembert - but you can slice it if it's well-chilled, & you can grate it if you pop it in the freezer for a couple of hours first (I keep a ziplock bag of it pre-grated in the freezer), & it spreads really well on sandwiches & crackers. It also blends easily into sauces (I made a cheese & pesto pasta sauce that was delicious!) & works great as a base for dips. I've yet to try it in mac & cheese, but I'm guessing that would be an oozy, gooey cheesefest, & you can also make cheese balls (mandatory holiday fare!), rolled in chopped nuts, herbs or spices. Although not as robust in texture as dairy cheese or some of the commercial vegan cheeses, it's still pretty versatile.Read More