Japanese Style broth with baked tofu

Japanese Style broth with baked tofu and courgette noodles

tofu

This recipe uses one of my favourite gadgets – the spiralizer (you can also buy a smaller hand held version).  It turns fruit and vegetables into great shapes that will hopefully encourage the whole family to eat more veg and eat less pasta, bread, rice and potatoes.

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If you haven’t got one a sharp knife or a vegetable peeler will work just as well.

 

 

 

This recipe is really tasty and anyone watching their weight or eating as part of the 5:2 fast diet will enjoy the tastes and textures without the excessive calories.

Japanese Style broth with courgette ‘noodles’ – serves 2, 210 calories per serving

1 ltr of boiling water

1 tsp chopped fresh ginger or ginger paste or ½ tsp ground ginger

1 chilli, 2 cloves of garlic chopped

1 tbls miso paste (suitable for vegetarians and vegans)

IMG_13831 tsp each of soy sauce, agave and lemon juice

large pinch of black pepper

1 carrot (100g)  – finely sliced

150g of each – leek (or onion), red pepper, both finely sliced

50g mushrooms or broccoli florets, 2 spring onions – finely sliced

140g courgette turned into ‘noodles’ with a spirialiser

handful of fresh parsley or coriander chopped

tofu

pressed tofu

Baked tofu: ½ block extra-firm tofu (drained and pressed), small drizzle of  olive oil,  3 tsp light soy sauce, 1 – 1½ tsp gochugaru or sriracha sauce

 

 

 

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140g courgette turned into ‘noodles’ with a spirialiser

 

 

 

 

  • Preheat oven to 220C/ gas 7/425F.
  • Cut the tofu into slices. Place it in a mixing bowl and add the olive oil, chilli sauce/paste and soy sauce. You may need to add a splash of water if it’s too thick. Gently mix to combine. Spread evenly on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes.  After 10 minutes, remove your baking sheet from the oven and flip each piece of tofu. Drizzle any remaining marinade over the tofu and bake for another 10-12 minutes.
  • IMG_9330In a large pan add ginger, chilli, soy sauce, lemon juice, agave, black pepper, garlic and miso paste to the boiling water. Continue to boil for a minute.  Turn down the heat and add the carrots and leek and cook for 2 minutes, add the pepper and mushrooms or broccoli .
broth

prepared by my cooking guest

  • Cook for 3 minutes then add the ‘noodles’ until the vegetables are cooked.
  • Check the seasoning and adjust.

This is now a popular dish for my vegan cooking guests to make

Serve in two large bowls, top with the baked tofu and scatter over the chopped herbs and sliced spring onions

broth

 

Additions

Small handful of unsalted cashew nuts  (28g)- 160 calories

1 tbls sesame seeds – 52 calories

 

Tex Mex vegan salad

Sweet potato Tex-Mex salad – serves 2

This is a really great tasting and colourful salad.  You can make various substitutions for instance use butternut squash instead of sweet potato,  any tinned beans like butterbean or cannellini. Use fresh chills instead of dried, add some sun dried tomatoes, pomegranate seeds, chopped red or yellow peppers or some toasted pine nuts.

vegan salad

Tex Mex vegan salad

200g sweet potato washed and cut in to chunks,

2 tsp olive oil,

large pinch of chilli flakes, salt & pepper,

½ can black beans,  drained,

½ tin red kidney beans, drained

½ can (or 100g frozen) sweetcorn, drained,

1 avocado, chopped,

120g fresh tomatoes and ¼ cucumber chopped into chunks,

1 small red onion or 2 spring onions, thinly sliced,

large handful of fresh coriander and mint leaves and stalks, chopped,

juice of ½ (1 tbls) lime

Heat oven 200C/180C fan/gas 6.

sweet potato

On a baking tray mix the oil, chilli flakes, salt & pepper and sweet potatoes.  Bake for 30 minutes until tender, and the edges are crispy. sweet potato

Combine all the remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Taste and season.

Add the cooked sweet potato and serve

vegan salad

It’s that simple, but oh so tasty

 

Overnight oats

Overnight oats, serves two,  202 calories per serving

overnight oatsThis really is a great way to enjoy fibre rich oats.  When they are soaked overnight they become soft and creamy, and with the addition of some fresh fruit they are also naturally sweet.  So there is no need to add extra sugar, agave or maple syrup.  The oats are low GI and will give you a slow release of energy until lunchtime.  The fruit and the oats will also give you a big burst of fibre; also great for keeping you fuller for longer and for improving your digestive health.  The chia seeds (pronounced chee- ah) not only make the dish firmer but add extra protein and calcium

And there is no reason why this dish has to be limited to just breakfast.  It makes a great dessert or afternoon treat.  The variations below will keep it interesting.

Go on pimp up your oats!!

Serves two,  202 calories per serving

IMG_184860g porridge oats

160 ml of non dairy milk (coconut, soya, oat, almond milk etc)

1 apple – grated

large pinch cinnamon

1 tbls sunflower/pumpkin seeds

1 tsp chia seeds

Put all the ingredients in a bowl and stir, then place in the fridge overnight or at least for 2 hours

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In the morning stir all the ingredients again and add more milk or water if its too thick and serve in a bowl

 

The ingredients can be increased to make more than one serving and can be kept in the fridge for up to three days

 

 

A transportable alternative is using an almost empty peanut butter jar.  Instead of frustrating yourself trying to get out the last bit of peanut butter why not use it as a container for your oats, especially if you are taking it to work

Fill your jar with oats, milk, fruit etc.  Stick on the lid and place in the fridge.  before you leave for work add some more ,ilk or yoghurt (if its too thick) and you’re good to go

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Additions to the basic recipe

1 tbls sultanas – 44 calories

7 (10g) cashew nuts chopped- 60 calories

1 tsp (5g) flaked almonds- 30 calories

2  (10g) apricots, chopped- 18 calories

2 (6g) brazil nuts chopped- 40 calories

1 tsp pumpkin seeds – 28 calories

1 pear, grated – 60 calories

1 tsp (15g) wholenut peanut butter – 96 calories

I’ve made these oats on numerous occasions, but the largest amount was for this years Taste of Rushcliffe food festival when I made over 200 portions. It proved to be a real winner with the visitors

Vegan lasagne

Vegan lasagne (no oil) – Serves 2

This recipe came about because one of my regular vegan cooking clients needs to be virtually fat free because of a health condition.  So making a tasty and nutritious lasagne  was a bit of a challenge, especially as the usual white sauce uses vegan marg/oil with flour and vegan cheese. Hmmmm!

But fear not I think I’ve cracked it!

vegan lasagne

How good does that look

 

And my cooking guest loved it

vegan lasagne

 

It makes the ideal meat free Monday recipe and the quantities can easily be doubled.

The tomato sauce

One small onion (75g), finely chopped

1 garlic glove or 1 teaspoon garlic puree

splash of water

1 medium sized carrot (75g) finely chopped

approx 75g of red lentils, thoroughly rinsed under cold water and checked for grit etc or 75g quorn or 37g of each

½ tsp vegetable Marigold vegetable bouillon powder or I stock cube or 1 tsp Marmite

¼ tsp of chilli flakes (more if you like heat) or 1 tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp dried mixed herbs

½ tin of chopped tomatoes , a big squirt of tomato puree – about 1 tsp

The ‘cheese’ sauce

1 medium (200g) sweet potato, ½ onion, ½ clove garlic, 1 tbsp/15g plain flour and ½ tsp vegetable powder,  ½ tsp mustard

up to 200ml unsweetened non dairy milk, 2 tbls of nutritional yeast (or 40g grated non dairy cheese if you don’t need to be virtually fat free)

Pasta – 3 sheets of dried wholemeal egg free lasagne

A foil takeaway container

vegan lasagne

before my vegan cheese version goes in the oven

before my vegan cheese version goes in the oven

To make the tomato sauce

Fry the chopped onion in water (or olive oil).  When softened, add the garlic. Fry a little, then add all the remaining ingredients and stir well.

  • carrot
  • red lentils
  • bouillon powder or marmite
  • chilli flakes or paprika
  • dried herbs
  • chopped tomatoes.
  • Plus ½ tin of water.

The mixture will be thin and wet, but it will thicken as the lentils cook. Bring to the boil, then leave to simmer for about 25 – 30 minutes, until the lentils and carrots are soft. Stirring every so often.

The sauce should still be quite wet when cooked.  Check the seasoning and add salt and black pepper if necessary.  Take off the heat and leave to cool

To make the ‘cheese’ sauce

Cook the sweet potato in the microwave for 4-5 minutes until soft.  In a pan cook the chopped onion in a splash of water (or oil). Peel the cooked sweet potato (Keep the skin and rip into pieces before adding to the tomato sauce) add to the onion along with the garlic and mustard.  Cook for a few minutes then add the flour and keep cooking, add the vegetable powder then slowly add the milk, and stir to make a thick sauce. Cook for about 2-3 minutes on a low heat.  Taste and season with lots of black pepper and some salt if necessary.  Add most of the nutritional yeast (or grated cheese, if using).  Leave about ¼ to scatter over the top.

Assembling.

Pre heat the oven to 180C

In a dish add a sheet or two of dried wholemeal pasta, then add a ½ of tomato sauce mixture.  Repeat the pasta/sauce layer, top with some more pasta and add the cheese sauce.

 made with vegan cheese

made with vegan cheese

Sprinkle the remaining nutritional yeast/cheese over the top and pop into the oven for 25 – 30 minutes until the top is bubbling and golden

serve with a large mixed salad or some steamed veggies

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Remember this serves two, so If you only want to eat one portion,  the other portion (once its gone cold) can be kept (covered) in the fridge for up to 3 days or frozen; then defrosted and thoroughly re-heated in the microwave or oven until the centre is piping hot

And if like Pete you’d like to learn how to make thesis nutritious and tasty recipes why not come to one of my cooking classes; either a group class or a private one to one

private Vegan cooking class

 

vegan classes gen

Quick vegan chilli

Quick vegan chilli – Serves 2

This is a really quick and versatile recipe, don’t worry if you haven’t got all the ingredients or you decide to swap some.  It isn’t essential to have the cinnamon, chocolate or dried herbs.  You can substitute the sweet potatoes for butternut squash, change the red kidney beans and use borlotti or black beans instead.  Add some courgettes, spinach or kale. And swap tomato puree (with additional stock or water) if you haven’t got half a tin of tomatoes

Today my one to one private cooking guest has made this recipe.  So all the images are from that session

kitchen

Quick vegan chilli

1 tsp vegetable oil

½ onion, chopped

1 carrot, grated

100g sweet potato – chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

¼  each of green and red pepper, chopped

1 stalk celery, chopped

1 tsp chilli powder or  ¼ tsp chilli flakes

1 tsp smoked paprika

pinch of cinnamon

50g  mushrooms, wiped and chopped

½  (400g) tin peeled plum tomatoes, chopped

½  (400g) tin kidney beans, drained but keep the liquid

80g sweetcorn

½ tsp ground cumin

½ tsp dried oregano/marjoram

½ square dark chocolate

lemon juice

handful of fresh coriander or parsley leaves

 

  • Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Cook onions, carrots and sweet potatoes until tender. If the veggies start to stick add some water

chilli

  • Stir in peppers, celery, garlic, chilli and paprika. Cook until vegetables are tender, about 6 minutes.
  • Stir in mushrooms, and cook 4 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, kidney beans and sweetcorn. Add the cumin, oregano, cinnamon and dark chocolate. Bring to the boil, and reduce heat to medium. Cover, and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

chilli 1

  • If it thickens too much add some of the kidney bean water. Taste and add a splash of lemon juice and salt & pepper (if necessary) and scatter over chopped fresh herbs
  • serve with wholegrain rice, a tortilla wrap or a toasted pitta bread

dirty pots

 

And now I just have the washing up to do!

 

 

 

Butternut squash and Chickpea tagine

Butternut squash and Chickpea tagine – serves 4,  approx 350 calories per serving

This is a great meat free Monday recipe – a campaign to encourage people to go meat free at least one day a week.  It is also very versatile and is great with either butternut squash or pumpkin.

moroccan tagine

600 ml (1 pint) boiling water

1 vegetable stock cube, crumbled, or 2 tsp vegetable bouillon powder or paste

1 tsp vegetable oil

1 tsp tomato puree

½ tsp turmeric, ground coriander and cumin

½ tsp of chilli flakes

200g  leeks or onions , washed and thinly sliced

225g sweet potatoes, cut into 1 cm (½ in) cubes

600g of butternut squash or pumpkin, peeled, seeded and cut into 1 cm (½ in) cubes

 

1 red or green pepper, deseeded and chopped

100g ready-to-eat dried apricots, chopped

1 x 400g can chickpeas, drained (keep the liquid)

Salt and pepper

To garnish

30g  pine nuts, 

Chopped parsley and mint or fresh coriander and mint

Optional: pomegranate seeds and hummus

 

 

pumpkins squash

Make the stock in a jug or saucepan with the boiling water and the stock cube, powder or paste.

 

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In a large pan add the oil and fry the butternut squash (or pumpkin), leeks and sweet potatoes for 10 minutes.  Before adding the turmeric, ground coriander, chilli and cumin, cook for 5 minutes.

moroccan tagine

 

Add the tomato puree and red pepper cook for 5 more minutes. Stir to stop it sticking and burning. Add some of the chickpea water if it does stick

 

Add the stock stir in the apricots and chickpeas and simmer for 10 minutes or until all the vegetables are tender.

moroccan tagine

Meanwhile, toast the pine nuts in a dry non-stick frying pan over a moderate heat, stirring constantly, until just beginning to brown.

pinenuts

Taste the casserole and adjust the seasoning, if necessary.  Ladle it into deep bowls. Sprinkle with the chopped pine nuts and parsley/mint or fresh coriander/mint and serve.

You can also add some brightly coloured pomegranate seeds and a couple of dollops of hummus. And if you’re very hungry add some wholegrain couscous, quinoa or rice

moroccan tagine

 

 

This is one of my cooking guests proudly showing her finished tagine dish

Mac and no cheese

Mac and no cheese – serves 2

This is a great meat free Monday recipe.  You can use any pasta shape and preferably wholemeal for added fibre.  And it makes two generous filling portions

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150g (1 cup) Macaroni

1 (200g) sweet potato (wash but don’t peel), ½ carrot, ½ onion- all chopped

2 cloves garlic

½ tsp turmeric and smoked paprika

large pinch salt , pepper and chilli flakes

300ml (1 ¼ cups) water

100g (¾ cup) soaked cashew nuts

10g  (¼ cup) nutritional yeast

3 tbls vegan spread or olive oil

1 tbls lemon juice

1 tsp Dijon mustard

 

ingredients

ingredients

Put the macaroni on to boil, cook as per packet instructions

chopped veg

chopped veg

 

Chop the veg place in saucepan, add water, garlic cloves, salt, turmeric, chilli, paprika, pepper and cook until soft (15 minutes.)

 

 

 

 

nutritional yeast

nutritional yeast

In a blender add the cashew nuts, lemon juice, vegan spread/oil/, mustard and nutritional yeast.  Add the cooked veg and the stock.  Blend. Do this in separate batches if you have a small blender and mix it all together in the pan.  If the sauce is too thick use some of the reserved cooked pasta water

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If the blender cup becomes difficult to open (due to the heat of the ingredients) wear a pair of clean washing up gloves to get a better grip

 

 

 

 

Drain the cooked pasta (keep the water), add it back to the pan and tip in the sauce

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Mix will.  If the mix is still too thick add some more of the reserved pasta water. Taste and adjust seasoning.

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Serve in a bowl topped half a sliced avocado and a large mixed salad

 

Optional additional step.  Before topping with avocado, mix a handful of breadcrumbs, ½ tsp garlic salt, 2 tsp olive oil, 5g nutritional yeast and 2 tsp mixed herbs together and scatter over the top of the dish.

Bake in a hot oven (170oC fan/190oC/gas 5) for 10 minutes until brown and crispy.

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Then serve with the avocado and a large salad

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Cheers to vegan beer

Cheers to vegan beer!

For more healthy eating advice please visit my website http://www.nutrition-coach.co.uk/

With the rise in popularity of cask ales and craft beers, I’ve noticed over the last year or so a number of establishments have started serving unfined vegan beer and lager. Breweries that saw the potential for this un-tapped (sorry!) market include Magpie, Angel Microbrewery, Brewdog and Castle Rock. Many of them also serve tasty vegan food too

crafty crow outside

angel

Angel

 

Magpie, a Nottingham based brewery is sold in two local pubs; Crafty Crow opposite Nottingham castle and Doctor’s orders on Mansfield Road, Carrington. I visited the crafty crow on two occasions, the first time they didn’t have any vegan beers on tap. The second time was more successful and I had the choice of one draft beer and a couple of craft beers and a few lager’s.

crafty crow label

I opted for the draft cherry raven, a rather tasty dark cherry stout. It looked so appetising and didn’t disappoint; not too sweet or fruity. The pub also has a food menu, but with only one choice of starter and main, I’d probably go elsewhere to eat.

crafty crowe

One of my volunteers (Paul Clarke) visited their other hostelry; Doctor’s orders, an incredibly small intimate place but they were able to offer a Magpie ale. Unfortunately the pumps were not clearly labelled and the staff didn’t know that another beer from the Framework brewery was also vegan. Being so small they don’t serve any vegan food options other than snacks.

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You can also read my review in today’s Nottingham Post and online

Nottingham Post

In the name of research I continued to drink my way around Nottingham and happened upon the Barley Twist on Canal Street, a Castle Rock establishment. The staff were very well informed and the beers clearly labelled

barley twist board

I opted for a light beer called ‘fallen odyssey’ and my drinking companion ordered another vegan beer the session IPA.

barley twist beer

Both were delicious and easy to drink. Another good Castle Rock pub that deserves a special mention is the Horse and Plough at Bingham, they always have at least one vegan beer on draft and unlike most of the other pubs serves great vegan food, it even has a separate vegan menu and again the staff are knowledgeable and helpful

 

Good food brings me on to The Angel on Stoney Street in Hockley. Not only are all its beers vegan and brewed on the premises, but their vegan food is also well worth a visit. I’ve tried their amazing jackfruit pulled burger and ‘steak’ and squash pie, with the best chips ever. Their beers are pretty good too ranging from a light easy to drink session beer to dark stouts and everything inbetween.

 

The last place on my mini vegan beer tour was Brewdog on Broad Street. It specialises in craft beers that tend to be a bit stronger, but their Punk IPA (on draft) at 5.6% ABV wasn’t too bad as long as I stuck to just a half. They also do a fair amount of vegan food to soak up the alcohol

 

I’ll just squeeze in three more Castle Rock pubs (visited by another volunteer, Kate) that deserve a mention; the Yarn bar, in the Theatre Royal, the Fox and Grapes in Sneinton market and the Beer Headz, in the old ticket office at the station. Staff at both pubs were very well informed and enthusiastic about their beers, but unfortunately the beers were not labelled as vegan

 

Fox and Grapes

Fox and Grapes

Beer Headz

Beer Headz

I am really excited by the prospect of more pubs embracing vegan beers, my waistline on the other hand might not be as excited!

Spicy parsnip and coconut curry

Spicy parsnip and coconut curry

Serves 2

This is a great recipe for using up parsnips and even if they are not your favourite veg I’m sure you will absolutely love this dish

The dish was inspired by a Nigel Slater recipe in the Observer food monthly

1 onion – chopped

1 tsp vegetable or coconut oil

450g parsnips, washed and chopped into chunky batons

1 red chilli or ½ tsp dried chilli flakes

8 fresh/dried curry leave or 2-3 tsp of curry powder/paste

½ tsp mustard seeds and ground turmeric (or fresh turmeric grated)

1 tsp each of ground coriander and cumin

½ tin of chopped tomatoes

2 handfuls of fresh spinach

½ tin of coconut milk

salt and pepper

handful of coriander or mint leaves

parsnip veg

Chop all the veg in to appropriate sizes. In a large pan add the oil and chopped onions. Cook on a medium heat until the onions are golden brown. Grind down the mustard seeds in a pestle and mortar or blender.  Add the finely chopped chilli, curry leaves/powder and spices to the pan, cook for a few minutes until they are fragrant

Add the chunky chopped parsnips and cook for 3-5 minutes. Use a large spoon to move the veggies to stop them burning. Add the tinned tomatoes, then 5 minutes later add the coconut milk and a little salt and pepper.

parsnip veg

Turn up the heat until it bubbles then reduce to a simmer for 20 minutes until the parsnips are soft, add the spinach and cover with the hot sauce until the leaves wilt

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Pour in to two bowls, scatter with the coriander and serve with flatbreads or wholegrain rice

parsnip vegIf you would like to learn how to make this dish and other tasty vegan dishes, then why not some to my vegan cooking classes

vegan cookery classes

 

Chickpea scramble

Chickpea scramble

This makes a great alternative to tofu scramble, and like tofu has a hefty amount of protein it is also high in fibre.  The nutritional yeast adds  B12 and the linseeds add essential fatty acids
As well as all that great nutrition the dish is incredibly tasty and flavoursome, so why not make it today
Serves two
Chickpea flour batter:
  • 50g of chickpea flour (also known as gram or besan flour)
  • 100 ml cold water
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast (with added B12)
  • 1 tbsp ground flax seed (linseeds)
  • ½ tsp kala namak (black salt) – for an eggy flavour and smell
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp ground turmeric or freshly grated
  • large pinch of smoked paprika and black pepper

chickpea flour

Veggies:
  • 1 tsp oil or a few squirts of oil spray
  • 1 clove of garlic ½ tsp garlic salt
  • ½ chopped onion
  • ½ red, green or yellow pepper – chopped
  • handful of fresh spinach leaves
  • large pinch dried chilli flakes or ½ fresh chilli chopped
  • small handful of chopped coriander leaves
  • black pepper
  1. Make the batter by mixing all the ingredients in a bowl. Set aside until neededchickpea scramble
  2. Heat ½ tsp oil in a frying pan, over a medium heat. Add onion and garlic (salt) and cook until soft; about 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add veggies and chilli and cook for another 2 mins.29365503_10155428600326903_775324558516289536_n
  4. Then add the spinach, cook until the leaves are wilted.
  5. Pour the chickpea flour batter over the veggies. Cook for a few minutes until the edges start to set. Drizzle ½ tsp oil or a few sprays of oil on the edges.chickpea scramble
  6. Scramble up the mixture  with a fork and continue cooking. The mixture will form clumps, scrape the bottom of the pan and let it cook for another few minutes before mixing again.  Continue to cook until the edges start to dry out, probably a total 4 to 5 minutes.chickpea scramble
  7. Turn off the heat and let the doughy mixture sit for 1-2 minutes.chickpea scramble
  8. Then break into smaller chunks and serve on wholemeal bread, sour dough toast or crumpets.  Or make it part of a more substantial brunch
  9. Sprinkle generously with black pepper and scatter over the coriander leaves

chickpea scramble