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Tuesday 27 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: I pea'd on the floor!!!

:-( They fell out ma over-stuffed fridge!!!

I wish I'd taken a pic of last night's tea. I had mum & dad round and made us a chilli with cornbread muffins. Ah well. Tonight's was kind of mish-mash, cuz I didn't really know what I fancied.

Pasta with mushroom sauce, roasted sprouts and butternut squash and some Taifun smoked tofu with herbs and sunflower seeds (I <3 that stuff!!).

Maybe tomorrow i'll be more inspired!


Sunday 25 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: Sunday foodz and an ouch!

I am clumsy bint today. I caught my stupid fake nail in a drawer when I was tidying up and bent the fucker back. I think some of my real nail has come away from the nailbed, i just don't know how far down because stupid fakey is still attached. But there was blood. And pain. And a LOT of swearing.

Anyway, at least I had dinner to make feel better. I made another stew but this time I was inspired by the Barefoot Contessa's beef bourginon. So it's just onions, button mushrooms, soy chunks, stock, red wine and thyme. I also added peas cuz I <3 them.

With lots of mashed potato. YUM YUM YUM. So good.

For lunch I really wasn't all that hungry but I did have both an avocado and some tortillas in the fridge that were past their best. So I chopped up the tortillas and baked them and made some guac. And then I chomped them while watching last night's Strictly Come Dancing on the iPlayer (my stupid sky signal went out again last night). Jo is gone, at last!! hurrah. She was sweet but effin rubbish!

Did you remember to put your clocks back?? I didn't so when I was lying in bed this morn waiting for the church bells to start going off it took a minute to realise that it was actually almost 9am not 10am!! doh.

oh and Jojo - I edited my last post for you to add the soup recipe.


Saturday 24 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: Cauliflower Cheeze....


I have this block of strong cheddar sheeze and it's open so I need to use it up. I don't like the texture of it so sandwiches are out and the damn stuff doesn't melt, so it's no good for regular cauli-cheeze. So when I saw Rachel Allen make cauliflower and cheddar soup I thought I'd rip her off!

I made some changes, obviously, but more than just veganising it. She started with a bechamel sauce, added cheese and then boiled the cauliflower in stock and blended it all together.

For mine, I roasted a cauliflower, onion and some garlic first, the put it in cold stock, brought it to the boil and cooked it 5 minutes. Then added a little soymilk, some instant potato granules and my sheeze and blended it.

It was not bad. The taste of the sheeze was pretty strong but it was good. Although I doubt it'll be making a regular appearance Chez Alien! However, if you're a faux cheese lover and you want the recipe, let me know and I'll post it.

I made some breadsticks to go with it. They were awesome.

And brekkie this morning was pancakes and berry syrup, as I didn't have any maple syrup. I made common old pancakes but I added in some cocoa, next time I'd add more, but it was still good. For the syrup, I chucked some frozen fruit, the juice of an orange, a tiny bit of sugar and a dash of cinnamon in a pan and boiled it up, then pushed it through a seive. It was pretty tart, but I liked that with the chocolatey pancakes.

OK, I'm off, it's time for Strictly Come Dancing!!


For Jojo - the soup recipe

1 head of cauliflower
1 small onion
1-2 fat cloves of garlic
2 cups of veggie stock
1/2 cup soymilk
1/2 cup cheddar sheese
1/4 cup instant potato (optional to thicken the soup)
salt & pepper
Cut the cauliflower into florets, cut the onion into wedges and roast both in a little bit of olive oil (i use a spray bottle) along with the garlic still in their skins, for about 20 minutes at 180C, until the edges are lightly browned.

Tip the veggies into a pot and add the (cold) stock and a pinch of salt & pepper. Bring to the boil, cover and then simmer for 5 minutes.
Add the sheese, potato granules (it might go a bit lumpy but that's ok) and soymilk and pour into a blender. Blend until completely smooth then check seasoning. Pour back into pan and heat gently if needed.

Friday 23 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: Friday night takeaway

Instead of the old grease-laden takeaway tonight, I thought I'd make my own chinese meal but with a few cheats.

Starting with a tin of granose mock duck. Which looks so gross out the tin, but drain it and bake for 15 minutes and it looks scarily like crispy duck.....

With some shop-bought hoisin (check the label for honey!!), cucumber and spring onions.

And I couldn't find the pancakes so I used iceberg leaves instead. I kind of prefer them anyway, gives nice crunch.

I had another go at making singapore noodles. I cheated and used straight to wok rice noodles (couldn't be arsed to wait 20 minutes for soaking the dried ones!). I stir fried some strips of tofu, red pepper, spring onion, carrot and a clove of garlic. Then threw in the noodles, some curry powder, extra turmeric and 5 spice (not authentic but I love it) and some ground ginger. I left out the chilli because my reflux has been playing up a bit today. Then just sploshed on some soy sauce and they were ready to go. And they were good too!!

Hurrah it's the weekend. Have a great one everybody!


Thursday 22 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: I cooked. And baked!

I didn't blog yesterday because I didn't have much inspiration. I had leftovers for lunch and dinner and I wasn't sure anyone would a post on the genius of mushy peas - aside from me!

Today though I had a productive day. Cuz aside from watching half the first season of This Life*, I bought a few bits in the supermarket and HURRAH, brussels are available again! I had some roasted with butternut squash and red pepper, with some baked tofu and brown rice that I cooked with some stock and spices and threw some sweetcorn into as well. Yum.

And I made some muffins. I used my basic recipe as a start and added spices, a banana and walnuts to come up with this recipe. They are cooling as we speak and I'm looking forward to having one with a nice cold glass of soymilk.

*I forget how awesome This Life was. Seriously, thursday nights are still not the same and it's been off the air about 12 years! haha.
Oh and Charlotte Hatherley's latest album, New Worlds, came out this week. It is amazing, go buy it!!!


Tuesday 20 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: Ya mama says you ugly!

My poor dinner today and yesterday! They were tasty but goddammit they were UGLEEEE! Like today's lentil soup.....

And yesterday's pasta bake. Pasta bake has potential to be pretty but somehow all the pix I got made it look fugly.

Luckily for them they tasted good and hurrah for leftovers.


Monday 19 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: Brighton up your day!

haha Brighton Pier - I stole your 'genius' catchphrase!

Can't believe it's Monday already - where are the weeks going??

Yesterday, my friend and I headed down to Brighton for another PPK meet up. We went to the George, which is a veggie pub and has plenty of vegan options on the menu. I went for the chicken style burger with vegan cheese & bacon. Normally I am not a lover of fake meats (especially bacon) or cheese but this burger was really really good. And the cheese tasted scarily real.

We asked what brand they used and they said it was redwoods. Now we just have to work out which variety!

Here's my burger, with fries.

Close up of the burger!

We walked around and went to a few shops and then got cake from the Infinity Cafe to take down and eat on the beach. I got a slice of the banana chocolate chip cake and have to admit, I was disappointed. It was really dense and seemed a bit undercooked. And they were really stingy with the frosting. A bit more would have made it much better.

It was a really fun day and I love Brighton all over again.


Saturday 17 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: Weekend Foodz

Well Friday & Saturday's anyway. I forgot to take a pic of the dinner I made my friend and I last night. But I did get one of the leftovers that I had for lunch today. Tofu, bean and pepper enchiladas with spicy rice and guacamole.

I put one of my home-grown chillis in the enchiladas. These suckas are hot, I didn't even use half of it!!

And dessert was strawberry mousse. Basically a punnet of strawberries, whizzed up and seived and then blended with a package of firm silken tofu, vanilla extract and agave nectar. Not bad.

And then today's dinner - Mac N Cheeze. I made a noochy sauce and added some peas and sweetcorn added. Then I put some breadcrumbs and some strong cheddar sheese on top and grilled it for 5 minutes. It was pretty good and satisfied the craving.

I'm now off to channel surf. I finished season 4 of Gilmore Girls (in 2 days, I'm that sad) and now have nothing to watch. Rory & Dean, Lorelai & Luke - OMG - I need season 5!!! (PS: I know I'm like 5 years behind, but do not give me spoilers please - I don't want to know!!!)


Friday 16 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: Baking Fail!

I am sad, I had to throw away cake!! I put in too much baking soda! Boo. I was on auto-pilot and thought I was making muffins, not cake. Dang.

Ah well, I’m not giving up on this recipe, it has potential.


Thursday 15 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: Stew & Beans I Guess

I dunno where that phrase came from but every time we had stew or casserole growing up, my Dad would, without fail at some point, say "Stew & beans I guess!"

Those stews were a little different though, because of the meat/ick factor. So today I was totally in the mood for a hearty, delicious casserole and I decided to put it in the oven on a low heat and leave until I got back from my body combat* class. I used TVP chunks, potatoes, carrots, green beans, onion, some stock, tomato puree and some dried herbs.

When I got back from the gym it'd had about 2 hours in a really low (about 125C) oven. I put it on a low heat on the hob, added som cooked butterbeans and peas and left it 5 minutes to heat through. It was ssoooo good.

I've never cooked with TVP chunks before. I bought them to make the Cholent recipe in Veganomicon that's been calling me for ages (still haven't got round to that yet, but I will!). They go a bit chewy but not unpleasant at all, and I dunno what you guys thinks, but I think they look scarily like beef chunks!!

And of course - THE best thing about stews..... loads of thin gravy and soaking bread in it at the end till it goes mushy. Awesome.

*Body Combat is AWESOME, not as fun as Jam but really really good nonetheless. And good for getting out some agression too. Feckin hard though, I sweated a lot!! I know you wanted to know that! hahaha.

Oh and go buy Shakira's new album, it is awesome.

Wednesday 14 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: Roasted veggie soup

I've just got back from another awesome Body Jam class and I'm a bit gross but thought I'd blog before I hit the shower. Seriously guys, I think I'm hooked. I might not be so happy tomorrow night when I get back from my first Body Combat class - eek!!

Tonight's dinner was soup and it was really really awesome. I had this idea to roast some tomatoes first but as I was chopping them I thought why not roast up some other veggies too. So I did.

I roasted up some tomatoes, onion, aubergine and courgette and a couple of cloves of garlic in just a tiny bit of olive oil. 200C for 25 minutes and they were perfect.

In the meantime I cooked 1/4 cup of brown rice in about 2 cups of water, with a veggie stock cube, a tbsp of tomato puree and some dried herbs & paprika. Oh and a bit of fresh chilli. It needed a bit more water than that as I was cooking it.

Then I sqeezed the garlic cloves out of their papers and put them in a jug with the other veggies and blended them and some hot water with my stick blender. This went into the rice along some more water until I got it the consistency I liked. Then just salt & pepper till it tasted right, et voila!

It made 3 portions that looked a little small but the brown rice makes it really filling!

I'm off to shower my stanky self!


Tuesday 13 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: Munchkin(pumpkin)Land

I was in the supermarket the other day and saw these munchkin pumpkins. They were too cute to ignore (and only £1 each), so I bought one. I bought this one cuz it was pretty, but they did have regular orange ones too.

I decided to bake it then stuff it. So that's what I did, 200C for about 35 minutes and it was soft. I carefully cut off the top and scooped out the flesh, discarding the seeds. I mixed the pumpkin flesh with a mixture of sauteed veg, brown rice, crumbled steamed tempeh and asian inspired flavours like soy sauce, lime juice, chilli and fresh coriander leaves. The stuffing made enough for 2 portions, so the rest is still in the fridge.

It was nice but nothing special so I didn't bother with the recipe here, you could probably do better, and so could I if I tried again.

It was pretty though.


Monday 12 October 2009

Vegan Mofo: 3 cheers for......

..... Alphabetti spaghetti!!

Just a daft little post from me today with a pic of today's lunch. I love spaghetti on toast and I hate hate HATE baked beans. So this is for all the baked bean haters out there! And yay for alphabetti spaghetti - bringing out the 8 year old in spag-lovers everywhere!!

MOFO! (It took me longer to find the F than it did to scarf this!)


Sunday 11 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: Wedding Foodz

Yesterday my best friend got married. It was a beautiful day, the bride looked amazing, the venue was absolutely stunning, the weather was great, the ceremony was gorgeous and the food was ace!!

I was a bridesmaid and if your're a facebook friend, look out for the pix later today!

My dinner - the starter. This was a tomato terrine, I think. It was lovely and spicey and it had avocado on the top. Hell yeah. So pretty isn't it!!

After that was a blackcurrant & cassis sorbet

The main was an artichoke with spinach and mushrooms and sun-dried tomatoes. It was sooo good.

Pudding was a raspberry vegan panacotta. This was SO goood! I'm gonna have to try and recreate it!

Here's a pic of the cake. OK it wasn't vegan so I couldn't have any but it was so pretty. With white chocolate shavings all around it.

For me and two wheat intolerant guests, I made some cupcakes. Chocolate spelt cupcakes with orange frosting.

The night before the wedding, after the rehearsal, we went for dinner and I had bruschetta to start which was amazing.

I didn't fancy veganizing any of the pastas/pizza items on the menu so I asked them to do me a salad. They came up with this and it was great, roasted aubergine, courgette, peppers, sun-dried tomatoes and a balsamic dressing over salad leaves. It really was good!

Bonus pic, the bride and us 3 bridesmaids. Hair & make up done yesterday morning but still in the PJs that the bride bought us for the morning of the wedding!


Thursday 8 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: Soup & lazy breadsticks

I really couldn't think of anything I wanted for dinner tonight so after staring into the fridge I found leftover mushrooms, soy cream and sweetcorn. So I made soup.

And twisty breadsticks. It was yummy.

I don't have a recipe for the soup, I just chucked stuff in the pot, but I do have one for the breadsticks. They're lazy breadsticks - the best kind! This makes 4 breadsticks.

1 cup of plain flour
1 sachet of fast action yeast
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp olive oil
1/2 tsp agave nectar
1/2 cup warm water

Mix together dry ingredients and then mix together wet and pour into the dry. Mix until combined and knead until combined (about 30 seconds, told you they were lazy!). Add more flour if too wet or more water if too dry.

Divide into 4 and roll into sausages then twist. Put on a baking tray and spray with a little oil

Bake at 200C/400F for 15 minutes or until just starting to brown and they sound hollow when you tap the bottom.

I'm off to watch gilmore girls and resist the urge to make another microwave mug cake!!


Wednesday 7 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: The dumbass, the crap photots and the cake

The dumbass would be me! I had a tonne of photos on my camera of today's dinner and the cake that this post is about but when I put the memory card back in to take another pic, I somehow managed to delete everything else off my camera!!! DUMBASS. Oh well, the gist is this....

I got back from body jam* tonight and felt saucy and cuz dinner was quite low calorie I went with it. I decided to make my own version up of the differeent microwave mug cake recipes that's going round t'internet and this is what I came up with. I tried mixing sugar and cocoa and sprinkling it on top then adding hot water in the hope of seeing some nice sauce appear on my cake, but was disappointed.

That is until I got to the bottom of the mug and found there was a bit of sauce - squee! However, it was that discovery that lead to me taking out the memory card and... oh you know the rest! boo.

So here are a couple of hella shite pics of my microwave choccy cake, I had some soya cream on it too, that's what the white gunk is!

Sorry! But to make up for my stupidity, here is the recipe. I won't lie and tell you "this is the greatest cake you'll ever eat like OMG!" But for a cure to a chocolate craving that takes less than 10 minutes to prepare, cook and wash up, it's pretty good.

1/4 cup (4 tbsp) of flour (I used white spelt)
1 tsp of cocoa powder
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp baking soda
pinch salt
1/4 tsp coffee granules (optional)
3 tbsp of non-dairy milk
1/8 tsp cider or white wine vinegar
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp rapeseed (canola) oil
1 tbsp agave nectar or maple syrup

Optional extra:
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp cocoa powder
1.5 tbsp hot water

Stir together your dry stuff in the mug of your choice. Chuck in the wet stuff and mix till combined. Mix together sugar and cocoa powder and sprinkle over the top. Then pour the hot water over the top.

Put on a microwave safe plate (just in case there's spillage), then microwave for 1 minute. Leave it to cool a bit before scoffing or you'll burn your tongue - piggy truffler!!

*Does anyone else do body jam?? I've been a few times now and I LOVE it. It's so much fun, you honestly don't feel like you're exercising until the music stops and you realise you're an un-coordinated sweaty mess! If your gym does Les Mills BTS classes, I recommend you go shake your booty at this one!


Tuesday 6 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: And you just had some kind of mushroom and your mind is moving slow!

OK so I think Jefferson Airplane may have been high when they wrote White Rabbit, and my post is about baby bella mushrooms, not magic ones!! But gimme a break, I don’t know any other songs about mushrooms.

Today was a day like many others where I have no clue what to make for dinner. But luckily I looked into the far depths of my fridge and found me some mushrooms!! So I decided on a stroganoff of sorts. I had some soy yoghurt left and some herbs but no soy sauce, damn. No recipe because it was one of those wonderous things where I just chucked stuff in and hoped for the best. I used mushrooms (duh), an onion, some paprika, thyme, rosemary, garlic powder, sweetcorn, tofu, braggs and some veggie stock. Then added some soya yoghurt at the end and some fresh parsley. Yum yum.

Did you guys see aliens take over my blog yesterday!! Well not exactly but some a-hole hacked it and posted a bunch of crap about Frankfurt!! What’s that about! Sorry if you subscribe by email and got an email full of spam from me!!

One pill makes you largerrrrrr and one pill makes you smallllllll! Gonna be singing that all night!


Sunday 4 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: This bread is bananas. B.A.N.A.N.A.S!

One thing I've noticed from reading some old posts is that I make stuff and then forget to go back and perfect the recipe if I don't get it right. So I'm revisiting some recipes during MoFo and starting with some banana bread that wasn't so perfect the first time round.

I used pecans instead of hazelnuts this time. I left some of the bananas chunky again but pureed some too, I also kicked the spices up a notch. It was WAY better this time, so here's the recipe.

Dry Ingredients:
1 cup (150g) white spelt flour
1 cup/(130g) wholegrain spelt flour
1tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1.5 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/2 cup, packed (120g) dark brown sugar
1/2 cup (60g) pecans, chopped. Measure before chopping!
Wet Ingredients:
3 ripe/overripe bananas
1/2 cup (125ml) soya yoghurt
1/2 cup (125ml) unsweetened non-dairy milk
1/4 cup (60ml) rapeseed (canola) oil
1.5 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp agave nectar

Preheat oven to 180C/350F.

Chop pecans and mix together with the other dry ingredients.

Chop the bananas and throw half in with dry ingredients and get them coated in flour. Mash the other half and mix the rest of the wet ingredients in with it.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix until just combined.

Spray a loaf tin with rapeseed oil and pour the mixture into the tin. Smoothe out and bake for 35 minutes. Then turn the heat down to about 160 and bake for another 25 mins or until a skewer comes out just clean.

Unfortunately my photography skills suck so this is the best cut pic I could get.

Here it is with some pure soya on while it was still warm. (It's also good with a bit of jam on!)


Saturday 3 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: argy bhaji!

I was bored the other day so I watched Market Kitchen (I have to pretty dang bored to watch that!!) and this dude was making onion bhajis. I had already planned a curry for dinner so thought I'd give them a go, but deep frying them is not good for my diet.

So I decided to make my own up as I went along and to bake them instead and they worked too!! They are really easy to make as well.

Here's the recipe if you want to have a go yourself (good news for gluten free folks, they use chickpea flour!!)

1-2 tbsp olive oil (plus extra for baking)
1 nice large onion, finely sliced (you need about 2 cups of onion)
1/4 cup (4 tbsp) chickpea (gram) flour
2 tsp rice flour (I used brown rice flour)
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 tsp garam masala or curry powder
1/4 cup (4 tbsp) water

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F.

Heat the oil over a medium heat and add the onions and a pinch of salt (don't go nuts or it'll overpower the flavour of the bhajis). Cook them for a good 10-15 minutes until they are cooked through and are starting to get golden, just don't burn them.

Transfer the onions to a bowl and dump the other ingredients in. Mix everything well.

Spray a cookie sheet with oil or line with greaseproof paper. Divide the mixure into 4 and spoon it onto the baking sheet. Flatten a little the spray the tops with a teeny bit of oil.

Bake for 10 minutes, then spray a little more oil over them and bake another 5-10 minutes until cooked and starting to get golden.

I served mine with curry and basmati rice. YUM YUM.


Friday 2 October 2009

Vegan MoFo: Easy Tiger!!

I know I wrote a post about this when I first started this blog, but goddamit I love tiger bread.

Just look at this magnificent beast! There is no week crap enough, no day full of idiots phoning me, no ailment that can't be soothed somewhat by some freshly baked tiger bread. Well maybe not exactly but in my head today, that's how it goes.

Tiger Tim (take that Henman, I stole your nickname!!) - he is happy with just a bit of pure soya....

But he really shines with a big dollop of chocoreale or spekuloos spread.

But he is not a fussy beast, no. He is just as happy with a generous coating of hummus.

I brought the small loaf - wasn't that restrained of me! And it was still warm, oh happy day. I'm off now to see what I can dig out of my cupboard to put on more tiger bread.