‘The discovery of a new dish, does more for the happiness of the human race than the discovery of a new star’ (1775-1826: Anthem Brillat-Savarin)
This recipe is from Yotam Ottolenghi. He is a big fan of savoury cakes that can be eaten at any temperature and still taste good. This makes a great addition to the lunch box or a side to a salad. He notes that wrapped well, that this cake will taste even better the next day and Mr B agrees as he had it for breakfast for a few days running.
I served this as part of an 11-dish dinner party as an intermediate course with a mustard watermelon salad. It is a mix between a brioche and frittata. It has layers of flavor with the onion, rosemary, basil, pecorino and has a whole cauliflower on the middle as a secret surprise.
1 small cauliflower, outer leaves removed
2 tsp. rock salt
1 medium red onion
5 tbsp. olive oil
½. Tsp fresh rosemary
1 tbsp. white sesame seeds
1 tsp. Nigella seeds (can use black sesame seeds or cumin)
7 eggs, free range and organic
½ cup basil leaves, chopped
1.5 cups grated pecorino
1 cup all-purpose baking flour
1.5 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. turmeric
1 tsp. ground black pepper
Preheat an oven to 400f
To prepare the cake, place the cauliflower florets and a tsp. salt into a saucepan of water and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until tender
Drain and set aside in a colander to dry
Cut 4 rounds from the onion and set aside
Chop the rest of the onion and fry with oil and the rosemary until soft, c.10 minutes
Remove from the heat and set aside to cool down
Meanwhile line the base of a 9-inch spring form pan with parchment paper
Brush the sides with a little oil and toss the sesame and onion sides on the sides so they stick, set aside
Transfer the onion mixture to a bowl, add the eggs, basil and whisk
Add the cheese, flour, baking powder, turmeric, pepper and remaining salt
Whisk until smooth
Add the cauliflower and mix gently as you don’t want to break the florets any further
Pour the mixture into the pan, spreading evenly. Arrange the onion rings on top
Bake in the middle of the oven until golden brown, c. 45 minutes or until you can insert a knife and it comes out clean
Let it cool for 30 minutes before slicing and serving
I adapted this recipe from Season by Nik Sharma, using Quorn to make it vegetarian.
Kebabs have a long and interesting history, and mostly trace their origin to the influence of Mughlai cuisine. This cuisine is strongly influenced by the cuisine of Central Asia, the region where the early Turko-Mongol Mughal Emperors originally hailed from in the 16th century. The deep spices and meat where seen as luxurious foods and used for royal dinners and celebrations. In our family, meat was also seen like that as my grandma was vegetarian and so it wasn’t an every day occurrence.
This is an easy recipe, it’s just a mix and fry. You can bake them too, but they tend to dry out a little due to their being little fat in the mixture.
1lb vegetarian mince
1 cup finely diced onion
1 egg, lightly beaten
½ cup chickpea flour
2 chilis, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 inch ginger, grated
1 tbsp. fresh lime
1 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. coriander powder
1tsp dried mint
½ tsp. ground cinnamon
½ tsp. dried sage
½ tsp. sea salt
Oil for frying
In a large bowl, mix the mince, onion, egg, chickpea flour, chilies, garlic, ginger, lime juice, cayenne, coriander, mint, cinnamon, sage and salt
Divide into 10 portions
Heat 2 tbsp. oil and fry the kebabs in batches, adding more oil as needed until golden brown, 3-5 minutes each side
Let’s break the myth that you need meat to build muscle. The gorilla can lift up to 10 times its body weight!
I made this dish on the request of my meat and potatoes concierge. As I would leave the building early in the morning I would go by the front desk and drop off a plant based treat, vegan cheesecake, vegan meatballs, vegan samosa, vegan chocolate truffles and after a few months I finally got a request for a cauliflower steak. This was a man who said that he had to eat meat with every meal.
You must learn a new way to think, before you can master a new way to live.
I love the humble cauliflower, the texture is meaty enough to satisfy and it takes well to assertive flavours. This is a basic version, but you could add a pesto, salsa or chimichurri. I served this with some Baba Ganoush underneath for a texture and flavour contrast.
Mr B was a little upset that I was cooking for another man, so I made him some vegan truffles and he forgot all about it…
½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
½ tsp. garlic powder
½ tsp. smoked paprika
¼ cup oil
Preheat the oven
Remove the outer green leaves from the head of cauliflower
Use a large knife and cut the cauliflower half lengthwise and into half again
In a bowl mix the oil and spices
Brush the cauliflower with the mixture on both sides
Bake covered with foil until steamed and starting to soften
Uncover and let brown for the remaining time
If you have a BBQ, sear for grill marks and a little char
This is a recipe from the kitchen of Verge in Philadelphia and is a super sexy dish. It has umami from the glaze with the mix of maple and tamari combining well and added depth from the gochujang
Because you are only using the inside of the eggplant it is a super light dish, silky and smooth, spicy and sweet
I love these flavors!
Adding in Kimchi Vegan Mayo also adds to the flavour and gives you a health kick too! Apart from the positive effects on weight, cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar, kimchi benefits that have been reported in scientific literature include; increased antioxidant status, protection from asthma, anti-aging, anti-cancer and protection from atherosclerosis. A good source if you want to read up on the benefits Kimchi is universityhealthnews.com and it gives you the links to the studies too
Kimchi is Grandma Food, passed down from generation to generation and if you have followed my blog for a while, you will know my rule, of whatever granny says, goes!
4 Japanese Eggplants (or one large Italian eggplant), peeled and chopped into 1 by 4 inch pieces (salt and leave to drain to take some of the moisture out)
1 tbsp. Gochujang
2 tsp. tamari
2 tsp. rice wine vinegar
1 tsp. maple syrup/agave
2 tbsp. sesame oil
½ cup vegan kimchi, drained, chopped
1 cup vegan mayo
4-6 corn/masa tortilla
4 chopped spring onions
Preheat the oven
Make the glaze by mixing the gochujang, tamari, vinegar and maple syrup
In another bowl toss the eggplants in the sesame oil
Heat a large sauce pan over high heat and cook the eggplant for 5 minutes until browned
Toss the crispy eggplant in the glaze and bake until the glaze is soaked up
Meanwhile fold the kimchi into the vegan mayo
Warm the tortilla for c. 2 minutes
Assemble the tacos by spreading some of the kimchi mayo down the centre of each tortilla, top with a large spoon full of the roasted eggplant, dress with the spring onions and lettuce
I believe food can unite people from all walks of life, all cultures, all religions. Food brings compassion and harmony to the table and creates a deeper understanding of each other
Although I grew up in my Grandmothers Indian Kitchen, Tikka Masala was not on the menu. This is because this is one of the infamous dishes where the origins or the recipe are fiercely debated all around the world. My favorite story is one that originates from 1960’s Scotland, when a customer asked for some sauce for his Chicken Tikka and the chef inventively added some Heinz Tomato Soup and Yogurt and thus the masala was born. You’ll be interested to know that the Glaswegians tried to get the European union to recognize this in the origin of the masala and have it designated as so, but alas lost they campaign in 2009. I find this story so heartening in a world of devision, to see the Scottish so proud of their Indian hybrid dish that they would try and preserve it as part of Scottish culinary culture
This version of Tikka Masala is made with Tempeh. I had no idea what could be done with Tempeh until this wonderful book, Vegan Richa’s Indian Kitchen. Tempeh is a traditional soya product, originally from Indonesia and unlike tofu it has it’s own unique taste. In the west people like to cut it up and add it to salads as if it was chicken or cook it in large pieces and substitute it for steak. I personally think it works really well as a substitute for paneer (Indian cheese) and the double flavoring process here, allows it to take on a depth of flavor not usually associated with the product.
I made gluten free chia roti to go with this, but will save that for the next blog. In the meantime basmati rice is a great substitute.
Mr. B. loves Tikka and Tikka Masala, so this was an attempt to bring him a healthy version of one of his favorite dishes that was also dairy free and vegan, so we could eat it together. Suffice to say he gave it five nods.
8 oz. Tempeh, cut into ½ inch pieces
3 tsp. oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tsp. garam masala
½ tsp. paprika
1 tsp. ground coriander
½ tsp. turmeric
4 medium tomatoes, chopped or one can
1 inch ginger, chopped
6 cloves garlic, chopped
1 green chilli (optional)
½ tsp. brown/coconut sugar
¾ tsp. salt
½ cup non-dairy yogurt
¼ cup non-dairy milk
1 tsp. cider vinegar
2 tbsp. cilantro, chopped
1 cup water
¼ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. garam masala
¼ tsp. garlic powder
¼ tsp. smoked paprika
Combine the steamed tempeh ingredients in a pan with the tempeh, cook over a medium heat until most of the water is absorbed. Let the tempeh sit for a few minutes. For best results, marinate the tempeh for a few hours in the mixture before cooking. The reason to do this is before tempeh can be a little bitter when used raw and this takes the bitterness away, in addition to imparting more flavour
Add the steamed tempeh and 1 tsp. oil to a frying pan over a medium heat, cook until the edges are starting to go golden, set aside
Heat the remaining oil over a medium heat, add the onion and cook until golden, stirring occasionally, c. 7 minutes. Add the garam masala, paprika, ground coriander, turmeric and mix well. Cook for a few minutes to temper the spices
At the same time, combine the tomatoes, chilli, ginger and garlic in a blender until smooth
Add the puree to a frying pan and cook until thickens, 10-20 minutes
Add the tempeh, sugar, salt, yogurt and non-dairy milk and mix well. Stir in the vinegar and bring to the boil, reduce to a simmer and cook until you reach the desired thickness
Don’t forget to taste and adjust to your own palate, adding chilli and salt as desired
My lovely father in law has a beautiful little garden, which he likes to tend to every day. He grows beans, eggplants and chard among other things and loves to give me a parcel of veggies whenever I go over. It’s a bit like getting a farmers market delivery every month and I immediately get to work thinking about what new recipe I can make that will do his produce justice.
This is a play on spanakopita, but it much simpler than that and uses chard instead of spinach! I served it with a side salad and we had it as a main, but you could easily serve it as an appetizer.
Mr. B has started a nodding rating system to indicate how much he likes a dish (bobble head to come) and this one gets 4/5, missing one star purely as it is a savoury rather than sweet dish!
1 head of chard
1 large onion, chopped
150g sheep cheese feta
1 pack of filo pastry
1 cup coconut oil
1 tbsp. sesame seeds
Salt and pepper
Put a pan of salted water on to boil
Preheat the oven to 350f
Heat 1tbsp. coconut oil and cook the onion gently for 10 minutes till translucent
In the mean time wash the chard and strip the leaves away from the stalks
Chop the stalks into small pieces and add them to the onions, add salt and pepper and cook for another 5 minutes
Add the chard leaves to the hot water and cook for 1 minute, drain and cool immediately under cold running water. Drain and squeeze as much excess water out as you can. Roughly chop the leaves.
In a bowl crumble the cheese together with the onions, chard stalks and chopped leaves. Set aside to cool.
Remove the filo from the packet and lay it out
Take out one layer and brush with coconut oil, add a second layer on top and repeat
Place two heaped tablespoons in the middle of the sheet and fold inwards to create a square parcel. Brush with coconut oil, flip and brush the back
Sprinkle the top with sesame seeds and bake for c. 30 minutes or until golden brown
Once out of the oven, let cool for a few minutes and serve whole or cut into half on the diagonal to create two triangle halves
Serving suggestion – accompany with a side salad of rocket, extra virgin olive oil, a squeeze of lemon and a dusting of lemon zest (the acid in this salad will help cut through the richness of the feta)
My dreams are normally full of food. If you know me well and see me staring off into the distance, you’ll know its because I am thinking about my next meal, the meal I just had or a recipe I am working on. It is therefore natural for me to combine food and art.
Beetroots have such amazing colors, my favourite is the deep ruby red because of the colour but also the antioxidant qualities you get with it.
This recipe is my healthy vegan version of beef tartar using those beautiful red beets to create a hearty, beet tartare. The dish has a lovely crunch and salinity from the capers and a smooth heat from the mustard.
I loved playing with this dish, as when you have finished you have a pink paint and a white cream cheese base to play with. It lets your inner artist (and child out) and what could be more fun than that!
This is a Tasha. Kitchen original, feel free to copy, creativity should be shared!
2 small beets
1 tsp. capers
1½ tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. mustard
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
¼ tsp. sea salt
3 tbsp. vegan cream cheese (see prior recipe)
Chives, chopped (for garnish)
Preheat an oven to 350c
Bake the beetroots in salt for 40 mins or until slightly tender
Remove from the oven and let cool
Once cooled chop into roughly 1cm x 1cm pieces
Whisk together the mustard, vinegar, oil, and salt.
Transfer beets to a small bowl and mix with the dressing
Smear plate with the vegan cream cheese and place the beetroot on top using a cookie cutter or ramekin