Recipes

Chestnut Soup with Puy Lentils and Sage Butter Croutons

This is a lovely soup that’s rich and velvety and would make a lovely starter for Christmas lunch. The crispy croutons made with sage butter, and the earthy flavours of the puy lentils make the perfect topping. Chestnuts are a low GL food containing complex carbohydrate, fibre, excellent amounts of vitamin C, healthy fats and minerals, so give this a go I’m sure you’ll love it!

 

Ingredients:

400g chestnuts (vacu-packed, tinned or roasted)

1 stick celery finely chopped

1 carrot, diced

3 echalion shallots, finely chopped

1 clove garlic chopped

1 small sprig fresh thyme

Tablespoon olive oil

6 leaves of fresh sage roughly torn

1 bay leaf

Approx 1.5 litre vegetable stock (according to how thick you like soup)

Salt and pepper to taste

 

For the topping:

Slices of wholemeal seeded bread, cut into cubes

Tablespoon organic butter or olive oil if vegan

Few sage leaves to taste

Tablespoon per serving cooked puy lentils

 

 

  1. Saute the carrot, shallots and celery in olive oil until softened. Add the garlic, thyme and sage until aroma is released then add the stock

  2. Put the chestnuts into the pot and simmer for approximately 15 minutes

  3. Allow to cool slightly before blending until really smooth

  4. Fry the cubed bread in butter until golden, adding the sage leaves at the last minute

  5. Serve the soup into bowls and top with warm puy lentils and sage butter croutons

 

 

 

 

Rocket Cashew Pesto Dip

This flavourful pesto dip uses Nutritional Yeast to create that cheesy flavour without the use of parmesan. Nutritional Yeast is a condiment full of essential B vitamins including B12. B12 is a vitamin mostly obtained from animal foods. While following a plant based diet it is important to obtain sufficient B12 from fortified foods or a B12 supplement. Nutritional yeast provides an excellent B12 source while giving many dishes that hearty, cheesy flavour.  

 

Ingredients:

200g unsalted raw cashews

2 - 3 tbsp (about 10g) nutritional yeast

1 garlic clove

100g - 200g rocket (100g for a dip up to 200g for a pesto)

1 clove garlic chopped

1 small sprig fresh thyme

6 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp lemon juice

salt & pepper

 

  1. Put the rocket, lemon juice and olive oil in a blender and blitz until you have a chucky sauce. Transfer this to a bowl.

  2. Put the cashews, nutritional yeast and garlic in a blender/food processorand blitz until ingredients are mixed. It's OK to have some chucky cashew pieces left in the mix.

  3. Stir the rocket and cashew mixture together and season with salt & pepper. This is now ready to use.

  4. If you want to make this into a spread, add more oil and blitz to a smooth paste. 

  5. Feel free to add more rocket, garlic or even some chilli flakes for a spicier, stronger flavour.

  6. Spread on some crackers, dip with some vegetable cruditees or mix in with some brown rice pasta or courgette spaghetti

 

 

 

 

Apple crumble - dairy, gluten and guilt free!

 

Who doesn’t like a generous portion of apple crumble fresh from the oven with a serving of warm custard? It is one of our all-time favourite desserts! Thankfully apple crumble does not need to be loaded with sugar or white flour. In this healthy dairy and wheat free version a combination of buckwheat flour, oats and almond flour is used to make the crumble top. Buckwheat, despite its deceptive name, is entirely wheat and gluten free. It is also high in minerals such as iron, zinc and magnesium, as well as lots of fibre and protein. This makes the crumble much more filling, leaving you both satisfied and nourished after eating this almost guilt free dessert. Instead of butter, coconut oil is used. Raw virgin Coconut oil, which is now available at most major super markets, has numerous health benefits. From anti bacterial and anti fungal properties to helping to keep your heart, brain and thyroid healthy and even encouraging weight loss.

Only a little maple syrup is added to sweeten this crumble keeping the sugar content at an all time low. What's not to like!

 

To make the topping:

80g almond flour

90g porridge oats

100g buckwheat flour

3 heaped tbsp of unmelted raw virgin coconut oil

2 tbsp maple syrup

salt to taste (at least 1/4 tsp)

 

To make the filling:

6-8 sweet apples cut into small cubes or slices 

(feel free to use pears and berries too!) 

cinnamon to taste

Optional: add a little apple or pineapple juice to soften the apples

while baking and a little stevia to sweeten the apples if they are too tart.

 

 

1. Put all the topping ingredients in a bowl.

2. With your fingers mix and rub the hard coconut oil into the flour mixture until you get a fine crumble. 

3. Grease a 20cm round oven proof dish with coconut oil.

4. Mix the apples with the cinnamon and transfer to the dish.

5. Spread the crumble evenly over the top and bake at 180 degrees Celsius for 20 - 30 minutes or until golden brown. 

 

For an extra tasty but still healthy touch, serve with piping hot dairy & sugar free, custard made from 2 tbsp unsweetened custard powder, 1 pint of almond or coconut milk and stevia to taste. Mix, bring to the boil while staring continuously with a whisk, and pour over your crumble once it has thickened! 

Moroccan Curry
Serves 4

Indian Samosa Rolls

 

If you like Indian flavours, you probably like indian samosas too, those tasty deep fried triangles filled with spicy potatoes and peas.  Unfortunately not all samosas are vegan. Ghee is often used to make the potato mixture or the pastry. Moreover, deep fried food is not particularly healthy! Vegucate has come up with a super tasty yet super healthy version of the original samosa.  Entirely vegan, free from gluten and rolled in some greens! 

 

For the filling:
2-3 medium large potatoes, peeled & cubed
1 cup of frozen peas
half a thumb of fresh ginger root, peeled and finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 medium white onion, finely chopped

 

Spices:
1 - 2 green chillies finely chopped (use only 1 if you don't like it too spicy) 
1 heaped tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp of coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
2 tsp garam massals powder
Optional: 1/2 tsp chilli flakes
More salt and oil to taste

 

For the rolls:
Several good looking savoy cabbage or spring green leaves


1. Peel and cut the potatoes into cubes and boil in salted water until soft. (Mash them a little once they are done).
2. While the potatoes are boiling, boil your peas for a few minutes until done. 
3. In a separate frying pan, fry the chopped onion, garlic, ginger, chilli and cumin seeds in some oil on medium heat until the onion has properly softened (several minutes).

4. Add all the remaining spices, the boiled peas and the mashed potato then turn off the heat.

5. Add more (or less) spices and salt to your liking but it should taste perfectly fine already. If the mixture appears too dry, just add a little more oil . Now your samosa mixture is done.

 

6. Remove the hard stems/veins from the cabbage or spring greens.

7. Steam the leaves until soft. Shake off any excess liquid and transfer

to a plate. 
8. Now put a dollop of the samosa mixture on a piece of leaf.

9. Roll up tightly until you have a sausage shape.

 

Your samosa roll is now ready to eat. 

Chok-a-block full of vegetables, this colourful sweet tasting curry is a real favourite with kids. Rich in vitamin A, C and lots of healing spices this is guaranteed to keep your body warm and your immunity high throughout winter. Serve with some freshly boiled quinoa or a portion of brown rice.

 

Ingredients:

1 onion, finely chopped

1 green & 1 red pepper, de-seeded and finely diced

2 medium carrots, finely chopped

1 medium aubergine cut into small cubes

1 peeled sweet potato, cut into small cubes

1 courgette, diced or cubed

200 g of fresh spinach leaves

1 can of chickpeas, drained

2 tbsps of raisins

1 large handful of blanched almonds (add more if you wish)

Juice of 2 - 3 oranges

3 - 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped

6 tbsp olive oil

2 tsp turmeric powder

2 tsp ground cinnamon

2 tbsp curry powder 

1 heaped tsp cayenne pepper (less if this is too spicy for you)

1 tsp of himalayan crystal salt salt & freshly ground black pepper to taste

 

 

  1. In a large deep sauce pan heat the olive oil and add all the ingredients and spices apart from the chickpeas, almonds, orange juice and spinach

  2. On medium heat, fry for approximately 3 minutes.

  3. Add the orange juice and simmer for approximately 15 minutes until all vegetables are softened

  4. Add the almonds, chickpeas and spinach and simme for another 5 minutes

  5. Serve immeditely! 

Recipe adapted from this website

 

 

 

 

Chok-a-block full of vegetables, this colourful sweet tasting curry is a real favourite with kids. Rich in vitamin A, C and lots of healing spices this is guaranteed to keep your body warm and your immunity high throughout winter. Serve with some freshly boiled quinoa or a portion of brown rice.

 

Ingredients:

1 onion, finely chopped

1 green & 1 red pepper, de-seeded and finely diced

2 medium carrots, finely chopped

1 medium aubergine cut into small cubes

1 peeled sweet potato, cut into small cubes

1 courgette, diced or cubed

200 g of fresh spinach leaves

1 can of chickpeas, drained

2 tbsps of raisins

1 large handful of blanched almonds (add more if you wish)

Juice of 2 - 3 oranges

3 - 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped

6 tbsp olive oil

2 tsp turmeric powder

2 tsp ground cinnamon

2 tbsp curry powder 

1 heaped tsp cayenne pepper (less if this is too spicy for you)

1 tsp of himalayan crystal salt salt & freshly ground black pepper to taste

 

 

  1. In a large deep sauce pan heat the olive oil and add all the ingredients and spices apart from the chickpeas, almonds, orange juice and spinach

  2. On medium heat, fry for approximately 3 minutes.

  3. Add the orange juice and simmer for approximately 15 minutes until all vegetables are softened

  4. Add the almonds, chickpeas and spinach and simme for another 5 minutes

  5. Serve immeditely! 

Recipe adapted from this website

 

 

 

 

Millet Porridge with Nuts

 

You may associate millet with the little seeds you often find in or on bread, or mixed in with birdfeed. But millet is a super nutritcious grain, which can be turned into a delicious bowl of morning porridge. It is high in fibre, protein and heart healthy nutrients such as magnesium and phosphorous. Millet tends to be more filling than oats or other stire bought breakfast cereals and helps to balance blood sugar levels. So for those who have a long morning ahead, millet may be your preferred grain of choice to keep you going till lunch.

To reduce the cooking time of millet (it takes longer than oats) and to ensure a super creamy porridge consistency without the use of ceam, before cooking it grind your dry millet grain in a food processor or nutgrinder until you have a fine powder. This doesn't take long. You can grind a big batch in advance ready to use on any given morning.

 

How to make super creamy porridge? (enough for at least 2 very hungry people)

 

 

1. Lightly toast the ground millet in 1 tbsp of coconut oil for about 2 minutes.

2. Depending on how thick or thin you like your porridge, now mix approx

1.5 cups of almond milk and 1.5 cup of water.

3. Bring to the boil and cook for approximately 8-10 minutes.

4. Add more water or milk if necessary as it thickens.

 

 

Add a finely diced banana per person and 1/2 tsp of mixed spice to the porridge just when it is almost ready. Then transfer to a bowl and add some seeds and nuts on top. Pecans, crushed Brazil nuts or almonds work well. Oh, and a naughty drizzle of maple syrup for some extra sweetness if needed. Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

© 2015 Louisa Richards