Sweet, Sticky, Sesame Tofu & Veg Fried Rice

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I love, love, love the versatility of tofu and who doesn’t love a night in with a Chinese?

When I’m making friend rice, I often change the ingredients depending on what I’ve got in the fridge freezer so feel free to add and remove vegetables to your taste.

Serves 2

Ingredients

Sweet, Sticky, Sesame, Tofu

200g of firm Tofu, drained and pressed

2 tbsps of cornflour

1 tsp of pepper

1/4 tsp of salt

1 clove of garlic, chopped or crushed

1/2 tsp of ginger paste

1 tbsp of sesame seeds

1 tbsp of sesame oil (leave out or use an alternative if you have an allergy)

3 tbsp of maple syrup

4 tbsps of soy sauce

1 tbsp of rice wine vinegar

2 tbsps of ketchup

1/2 a tsp of chilli flakes (or a whole tsp if you’re me)

1 tbsp of olive oil

Method

Slice the tofu in to bite sized pieces.

Mix the corn flour, salt and pepper in a bowl.

Dip the tofu pieces in the cornflour mix to coat it.

Heat a olive oil in a pan and fry the tofu pieces, turning them over until they start to become crip and golden.

In a bowl, mix the sesame oil, maple syrup, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, ketchup, chilli flakes, garlic and ginger paste and mix in to a marinade.

Add the fried tofu pieces to the marinade and let sit for around 30 minutes to soak in the flavour.

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Pour in to a pan and fry in the marinade until sizzling. 

Ingredients

Veg Fried Rice

1 clove of garlic, chopped

1/2 cup of basmati rice

3/4 cup of water

1/2 tsp of salt

1 tbsp of soya sauce

1 carrot, peeled and julienned

3 spring onions, sliced

1 yellow pepper, sliced in to thin strips

1 large broccoli tree, but in to small bite size florettes

3 large mushrooms, sliced

Handful of kale leaves, destemmed and chopped (you could substitute for cabbage)

Method

Heat water in a pan adding the salt and rice. Bring to the boil, then turn heat down, put he lid on the pan and simmer for 15 minutes.

Check the rice has soaked in the water and is cooked and leave to cool.

Add all the vegetables and garlic to a wok with oil and fry whilst stirring on a low heat for around 10 minutes until the vegetables are all cooked.

 

Stir in the rice and mix.

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Stir whilst still on low heat for another 2 minutes.

Serve with sesame seeds

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‘Sausage’, Bean & Leek Hotpot

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As the weather gets colder, you really crave nice hearty meals in the evenings and hotpot’s are just perfect.

You can literally put anything in, I’ve gone for sausage, bean and leek here but hotpots are great for using up veg from your fridge, your freezer or tins from your cupboard so I’ve thrown some peas in as well.

Serves 4

Ingredients

1 small onion, chopped

1 clove of garlic, chopped

1 leek, sliced

4 Vegan sausages, sliced in to 1cm thick pieces (I used Linda McCartney)

1/2 a tin of chopped tomatoes

1/2 a tin of kidney beans

1/2 a tin of butter beans

1/2 a tin of borlotti beans

1/2 a cup of peas

2 tbsp of vegan gravy granules

1 cup of Water

1 tsp of thyme

1 tbsp of vegan Worcestershire sauce (I used Henderson’s relish)

Salt

Pepper

1 green chilli, chopped (optional)

1 tbsp of olive oil

4 baking potatoes

1 tbsp of dairy free dubber

1 tbsp of plain flour

Method

Heat the oven to 200°C

Peel the potatoes and lice in to discs about 3 mm thick.

Place in a microwaveable dish with 2 tbsps of water. Put the lid on the dish and cook for 6 minutes.

In the meantime, in a saucepan fry the onion and garlic in the olive oil for around 2 minutes until the onion starts to become transparent.

Add the water and bring to the boil.

Add the gravy granules and stir until they disolve.

Add the sausage pieces, tomatoes, kidney, butter, borlotti beans (and peas if you want to add them like I did this time), worcestershire sauce, thyme and salt and pepper to taste. (Add the chilli here too if you’re a chilli fiend like me)

The gravy should be a nice consistency but add a little more water here if you need to. 

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Turn the heat down, put the lid on the pan and simmer for 10 minutes.

Remove the potatoes from the microwave and drain.

Put them back in the microwaveable bowl, add the dairy free butter and plain flour, season with a little salt and pepper, put the lid on the bowl and shake to coat them.

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Pour the sausage, bean and leek mix in to a large oven proof dish. (I would generally use one large dish but the big strong man in my house is a wimp when it comes to chilli so I’ve used 2 smaller dishes here instead)

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Layer the potato discs on top, overlapping slightly.

Place in the oven for 45 minutes.

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Serve 

Jackfruit ‘Tuna’ & Potato Cutlets.

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A lot of people use jackfruit as a substitute for pulled pork but I’m a big fan of using it instead of tuna.

This is basically my mum’s recipe for tuna and potatoes cutlets, which I use to love before I saw the light so I’ve tailored it and made it fish friendly! 

The nori, vinegar and lemon juice mixed in really give the cutlets a very similar fishy taste to the original recipe.

Quick and easy to make.

Makes 4

Ingredients

1/2 a tin of green jackfruit (in water of brine, not syrup), drained

2 large potatoes

1 sheet of nori, torn in to small pieces

1 small onion, chopped

1 clove of garlic, chopped

1 tsp of dried corriander 

1 green chilli, chopped

1 tbsp of vinegar

1 tbsp of lemon juice

2 tbsps of dairy free milk

4 tbsps of olive oil

2 tbsps of water

1/2 a cup of breadcrumbs

Method

Heat the oven to 200°C

Peel and quarter the potatoes and boil for around 15 minutes until soft.

Mash the potatoes adding the milk.

Shred the jackfruit until it  is in flakes.

Add the jackfruit, onion, garlic, nori, corriander, green chilli, vinegar and lemon juice to the mashed potato and mix.

Add salt and pepper to taste.

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Let cool for around 5/10 minutes or until the mix is not too hot to touch.

With your hands, divide the mixture and make in to 4 cutlets.

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Place in the fridge to cool, this helps the potato becomes firmer.

Brush the cutlets with olive oil and dip in the bread crumbs.

Place in the oven for 15 minutes, turn over and leave for another 15 minutes. Both sides will turn golden.

Serve

 

Broccoli,Mushroom, Tomato & ‘Feta’ Tofu Quiche

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I find tofu one of the best things to use as an egg replacer and this recipe is bound to turn any anyone who’s undecided on tofu in to a total convert.

Serves 4

Ingredients

For the crust

200g of plain flour

100g of dairy free butter

2 tbsps of cold water

Pinch of salt

For the filing

1 clove of garlic, chopped

1 small onion, chopped

1 large white mushroom, chopped

1 tomato, chopped

1 broccoli tree, cut in to smaller trees

1/2 a cup of dairy free milk

800g of firm tofu, drained

1/2 a block of ‘feta’ style vegan cheese (I used Sainsbury’s own)

1 tbsp of dried parsley

2 tsps of dijon mustard

1/2 a teaspoon of ground nutmeg

Salt

Pepper

1tbsp of olive oil

Method

Heat the oven to 200°C

Put the flour, dairy free butter, water and salt in to a food processor. Mix until the dough gathers together.

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Remove the dough from the food processor and wrap in cling film. 

Place the dough in the fridge for an hour.

Remove the dough from the fridge and cling film.

Sprinkle a little flour on your worktop and using a rolling pin, roll out the dough in to a circle a couple of inches bigger than your pie dish.

Place the rolled out crust in to your pie dish, pressing the edges with your fingers.

Cut off any excess pastry.

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Place your crust in to the over for 15 minutes.

In the mean time.

Combine the tofu, dairy free milk, ‘feta’, dijon mustard and parsley in a blender and whizz.

Ad salt and pepper to taste and give another short whizz.

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In a pan, fry the garlic and onion in olive oil for around 2 minutes until the onion starts to turn transparent.

Add the broccoli, mushroom and tomato and fry gentle whilst stirring for another 2 minutes.

Remove from heat.

Pour the tofu mix in with the vegetables and stir.

Remove the Crust from the oven.

Pour in the filling and smooth with a spatula.

Place in the oven for 40 minutes.

Remove from the oven stand for 5 minutes.

Serve either hot or cold.

Crab Apple Infused Vodka

I’ve been at it again, foraging that is.

Back in early August, my best friend stumbled across a row of trees in our local park growing what looked like ‘little green apples’ on them whilst walking his dog. He sent me a picture asking me what they were and to my delight, I identified them as crab apples.

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At the beginning of October we were out together on another dog walk and he took me back to the spot where the crab apple trees were and by then the fruit had turned from green to ripe Autumnal yellows and reds, luckily I had a spare poo bag on me (you have to be resourceful sometimes) and we picked a bag full. 

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Small and much more tart than normal eating apples, lots of people use them to make crab apple jelly but no, not me, I decided to infuse some vodka which will be ready just in time for Bonfire Night!

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Ingredients

20 crab apples

70cl vodka

100g of caster sugar

1tsp of ground nutmeg

1tsp of ground cinnamon

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Method

Wash the crab apples and put them in a 2 litre picking jar.

Pour the vodka over the apples.

Add the caster sugar, nutmeg and cinnamon.

Put the lid on the jar.

Leave to infuse for 1 month minimum, the longer you leave the apples infusing, the stronger the flavour will be.

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Strain in to a jug and pour in to a bottle. ( I bought an amazing glass skull bottle from Tiger for mine)

Serve with tonic water.

 

Cheesy Vegan ‘Chicken’ & Leek Stuffed Pumpkin

I love this time of year when the air is crisp and nature is full of rich shades of autumn leaves and conker.

It also means ’tis season for pumpkin everything! 

I’m a big fan of squash of all varieties but being a scream princess, there is a special place in my heart for the regular pumpkin, mainly because they remind me of my favourite holiday, Halloween!

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Serves 2

Ingredients

1 small pumpkin, cut in half and gutted

1 tbsp of olive oil

1 tbsp of dairy free butter

1 tbsp of plain flour

2 cups of dairy free milk, I used cashew

1 clove of garlic, chopped

1 small onion, chopped

150g of vegan soya pieces – you could use any chicken style alternative

1/2 a cup of peas

1 leek, sliced in to rings

100g of grated vegan cheddar style cheese (I used Tesco)

1 tsp of dried sage

1 tsp of vegan bouillon

Salt

Pepper

Method

Preheat the oven to 200°C

Coat the flesh sides of the pumpkin halves with olive oil.

Place face down on a baking tray, cover in foil and place in the preheated oven for 40 minutes

Melt the butter in a saucepan.

Add the flour and stir to make a roux.

Remove from heat and stir in some of the dairy free milk until the roux melts and there are no lumps.

Place back on heat and gradually add the rest of the milk while stirring until you have a nice thick white sauce.

Stir in the cheese until it melts.

In another pan, gently fry the garlic and onion for a couple of minutes until the onion starts to appear transparent.

Add the soya pieces and cook whilst stirring for a further minute or so.

Stir in the cheese sauce.

Add the leek, peas, bouillon, sage and salt and pepper to taste.

Place the lid on the pan and simmer for 30 minutes.

Remove the pumpkin halves from the oven and place hollow side up on plates forming pumpkin bowls.

Spoon the filling in to the pumpkin bowls.

Serve  

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Fajitas

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I love Mexican food and am a big fan of DIY fajitas, sitting at the table and assembling them as you eat.

I’m not a massive fan of salsa though so instead of cooking my fajita filling dry, I add tomatoes and leave out the salsa when it comes to assembly.

This recipe is so quick and easy!

Serves 4

Ingredients

1 300g bag of chicken style pieces (I used Tesco own)

1 pack of flour tortilla wraps

1 green pepper, sliced (other colour peppers also work but green are my favourite)

1 tin of chopped tomatoes

1 onion, chopped

2 tsps of chilli powder (or more if you’re a rock star)

1 tsp of paprika

1 tsp of cumin powder

1 tsp of cayenne pepper

1 tsp of garlic powder

1 tsp of salt

1 tbsp of olive oil

Juice of 1/2 a lemon

Method

In a pan, fry the onion in olive oil gently for around 2 minutes.

Add the chicken style pieces and the tomatoes and stir.

Stir in the spices and lemon juice and add the pepper and stir for around 15 minutes until the juice from the tomatoes has reduced.

Serve with optional chopped lettuce, vegan sour cream, guacamole, jalapenos, grated vegan cheese and of course tortillas which are best warmed.

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