Monday, 10 October 2011

Canadian Maple Cookies!

My Boyfriend has been hiding Mr. Maple cookies from me, this is clearly not acceptable and as such I have decided to eat lots of them tonight!

The Cookies were brought over from our friend in Canada. She left some for us when we arrived at her house last year when we went to Vancouver Island to stay with her, she said they were her favorite cookies and looked vegan, which they do! also she made some vegan muffins and a Vegan Curry... What a welcome!

May Kaidee, Thai Cooking

A good friend of mine and fellow Art Blogger Claire, is currently travelling around Asia, and while in Thailand found a Vegan resturant and sent me a link.

Im really excited as they do a cooking school too! I'm not the best at cooking Asia's food, and get lost trying to make Tofu taste like anything but sponge, and I always find it is easier to learn by doing or being taught in person, so would love to give this ago in April when I am in Thailand.

As well of course sampling the food at one of her many resturants in the city!

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Quick and Easy Enchiladas

Every time I’m presented with an extensive choice at a vegan restaurant, I will always pick Enchiladas!
Two of my favourite examples of this are; when I went to the Chicago Diner (the first time) the plate included re-fried beans and a fan of avocado on top. The Second was on a trip to the town of Glastonbury, where a very cold and weary camper ordered hot Enchilada which was topped with sour cream and a few sliced olives, from Cafe Galatea; I would really recommend this place for a great evening meal!

I used to think it was too much effort to make at home, especially if it is just for me, but I’ve stripped it down to bare essentials for an extremely tasty dinner!

• Vegetables such as peppers and onions (potato and courgettes would work well too)
• TVP-Soya mince
• Taco seasoning
• Vegan Cheese
• Tinned Tomato
• Red onion

First cook up the vegetables until softened, then rehydrate some soya mince by adding hot water until it has expanded and cook this with some taco seasoning or your favourite blend of chilli spices. To make the tomato sauce; in a pan reduce till it is fairly thick.
Holding open the wrap and spoon in the Vegetables, Chill Mince, and add some Vegan Cheese - I use Redwoods Cheezly and a little of the sauce. Roll up one end, tuck both sides in and wrap the rest. Pop this into an oven dish, and spread over the Tomato sauce and scatter some raw onions, bake this until the edges are golden brown and crunchy.
Let them cool a bit before eating! A deliciously crunchy, soft centred treat!
Once on your plate, top with Vegan Sour cream, Avocado or Vegan Mayo and served with some Rice, Re-fried Beans or a crisps salad. a Brownie?

When I first read in PPK’s Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar the Recipe for Deluxe Cocoa Brownies I marked this page for things to bake. When collecting the ingredients I was so intrigued to see the ingredient is TOFU! I love waiting till someone has their first bite before I tell them there is Tofu in the Brownies.

This is a brilliant recipe and makes a lovely moist, rich, crumbly brownie.

I usually serve this straight up, without any topping, but occasionally throwing in some chunks of chocolate, I’ve been eyeing up the Chocolate Chip Cream Cheese Brownies for next time.

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Vegan Books

I bought myself one of these handy little devises about 3-4 years ago at the Bristol Vegan Fayre (now the Eco Veggie Fayre) and apart from a few Euro trips it hasn’t had much use, the Vegetarian guide to Europe and a phrase book usually serve me well there.
Now, if anyone knows where about in my house this book is, I would really love to know!
Wish me luck on my book hunt!
Looking forward to the effects it will have in Asia.
Has anyone got this book too?

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Cakes and B-Awake (Basingstoke AWareness and Knowledge Exchange)

I am actively involved in the running of a local Documentary film group in Basingstoke, one a month we spread the knowledge of socially aware issues.
A few of our previous Films include; No impact man, a film about a New Yorker who along with his wife and young child. Trying to reduce their impact on the planet for one year. They buy local, go Vegetarian and once the Toilet roll runs out don’t buy anymore. Don't use electricity or fuel dependant transport. The experiment helps them lose weigh without a gym membership and spend more time than ever as a family.

Other films include; The Cove, Age of Stupid, Death in Gaza, Inside Job and Dirty Oil.

One of the co-founders makes Vegan Gluten Free cakes as to not exclude anyone in the audience.
The cakes are thickly iced and decorated with symbols relevant to the film we’re showing.

Radio active Cake?

Bombs-not Fish

Monday, 3 October 2011

Countdown Store Cupboard Clearout

With 10 days till Travels I’m using up some of the store cupboard staples that only I eat, Pasta fits this category as my Mr is Wheat Free. So to conclude my ‘R’ problem I went for a simple tomato pasta with tender Runner Beans, quite an usual combination, but I love chunky vegetables to munch on when eating pasta. I spinkled a little Cheezely on top too!

Sunday, 2 October 2011


No my keyboard isn’t stuck.

My garden is full of home grown veg and herbs beginning with the letter R (does this sound like Sesame Street to anyone) Rhubarb, Rosemary and Runner Beans.

So although I’m not taking part in Vegan MoFo Officially (as I’m leaving to go backpacking for 10 months during the MoFo) I’m taking this opportunity to blog lots before I go!

So what should I make?

Last time I used the runner beans in an Appetite for Reduction “Bowl” style meal with lettuce, steamed kale and Avocado-a very green bowl pg 266-267.

Runner Beans taste great steamed or boiled and served straight up with a little salt pepper, chilli or soy sauce-they are so tender, usually eaten within 20 minutes of picking!
Maybe to stick with the R theme I should make a Runner Bean Risotto.

Alternatively I have seen a recipe for Rosemary Focaccia in Veganomicon pg 220-221.

As for the Rhubarb, I’m a traditionalist and usually stick to a warm oatie Crumble with custard or ice cream! If anyone can think of a non Crumble use for Rhubarb I'm listening.

The light is fading here, so I best get picking!

Saturday, 1 October 2011

This time last year I was making Vegan Dinosaur cake at work, because my friend Gemma was leaving. Ironically this year I had my last day at work yesterday, as im off Backpacking for 10 months soon, I got lots of lovely presents (including bourbon biscuits) and flowers from my friends at work, also got a wind up Tri-Sarah-tops toy!

In conclusion Dinosaurs are amazing!

Dinosaur Cakes-original post can be found here

My cake had more of a dragon look to it Gemma’s cake looked a lot more realistic-a bit scary in fact (fake blood included)!

This was my first ever try at making a cake that didn’t look like a cake, and I would gladly do it again, although I would buy pre coloured icing in the future, to save a lot of time!

My questions to you is; has anyone out there ever made an animal cake?

Saturday, 10 September 2011

A Farewell with Victoria Sponge with Raspberry.

My partner and I were invited over a friend’s house for dinner, as we are due to leave for our 10 months of travelling in about 6 weeks and one of the couple is off to New Zealand for the Rugby soon.

They cooked a lovely spinach and lentil curry with rice (and of course mango chutney) so I decided to take pudding over.

As most people (myself included) don’t usually have a Vegan Dessert lying around, and was in need of a bit of baking creativity!

As my Mr is wheat intolerant, as is one of the friends who’s house it was I tried my hand at a wheat free Victoria Sponge – I found a vegan recipe on the website of the flour producer “dove farm organic” I made according to instructions, and it uses quite simple and everyday ingredients; Sugar, Oil, Vanilla Extract, Half a mashed Ripe Banana, wheat free flour and water (mostly store cupboard essentials).

The end result was a surprisingly moist cake with a hint of banana, which I clever counteracted with a fresh raspberry sauce sandwich between the layers.

I bought 2 punnets of raspberries, and simply washed the berries (leaving some moisture to them) and added to a saucepan and very gently heated, I added two tablespoons of icing sugar to sweeten and thicken, though this does depend on the sharpness of the raspberries, please taste...lots.

When it reached a loose jam consistency, I sieved it to remove a majority of the pips (the ones left where really unnoticed when eating it) and when it cooled I spread it over the base of the cake. Placed the other half on top and sprinkled icing sugar and adorned a few fresh raspberries clustered in the centre.

Everyone enjoyed the cake - even us wheat lovers!

I think I have inspired some wheat free bakers to be too!

Sunday, 29 May 2011

Bristol Vegan Fayre

I was hoping for the annual Vegan Fayre to have a few of my favourite stalls, and I wasn’t disappointed, first stop was vegan fish and chips, (mushy peas optionally) with a cuppa brew!

Something Fishy Vegan Fish and chips with a touch of seaweed;

This was followed by a few hours of sampling and browsing what’s new in the world of Veganism in the UK! Which included vegan peach gummies and moo free chocolate!

Bamboo Clothing:

Buddha Fields cafe, pancakes and Chai tea, yum!

I had a chat with some of the Sea Shepherds and the Royal Society for Protection of Birds, as well as a few other animal charities.

The atmosphere was chilled, as was the weather but it brightened up and the acoustic entertainment was a real treat, including music and poetry.

Family friendly and full of a diverse variety of food including veggie kofta’s, falafel, raw food, fresh juices, Indian bites and drinks, burgers, salads and stews.

For a sweeter tooth a choice of Booja Booja ice cream from a classic VW, or Rice Cream or Churros with chocolate sauce!

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Healthy times

After a Trip to Ms Cupcake in London on Saturday before the Roller Derby Bout, I bought the long drooled over Appetite for Reduction by Isa, the amazing co-author of Vegan Cupcakes Take over the world, Veganomicon, Vegan with a Vengeance and Cookies Invade your Cookie Jar.
Since then I have been trying a new method to cooking, namely making a few days worth of something healthy for lunch and dinners.
I started on Sunday night with making a chickpea, spinach and tomato curry, finished off with some coconut milk. And preparing my lunch on Monday, I used the forgotten bag of Quinoa (Isa Raved about eating it lots) and it’s much better for you than couscous. So cook the Quinoa and when it’s cold add to a bowl of grated carrot, chopped tomato, cucumber, radish, coriander, pepper and spring onion.

I hope this doesn’t sound like a Craig David song but;
I made enough salad for lunch on Monday,
Taco’s with chilli soya mince, refried beans and salad for dinner on Monday,
Tuesday lunch leftover taco mix salad,
Tuesday Evening night Curry with Quinoa salad. Pudding of stewed rhubarb with vegan custard.
Wednesday lunch Quinoa salad with humous, lettuce and two tasty gherkins
Wednesday dinner, Thursday lunch, Thursday dinner, Friday lunch, Friday dinner to go!

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Ms Cupcake and Roller Derby

Last weekend, I was heading to london to see a Roller Derby Bout hosted by the London Roller Girls. On our way we stopped at the newly opened (5weeks) for a few sweet treats. The lovely shop in Brixton, is very easy to find from the station and the staff were lovely.

Got there in time for a freshly made Vegan Doughnut, I urge any visitors to get one..or two!

The Strawberry Cheesecake cupcake was my first choice, and I tried a few samples too of the Crunchy Bar Cake and Ferrero Rocher Gluten Free.

The Gluten Free options are just as good!

Ms Cupcake herself attended the Roller Derby Bout.

I had a great time at Roller Derby and cant wait to go to the next one, the girls are amazing Skaters!

Seasonal Splender

I have again been enjoying the treats the Winchester Hampshire Farmers Market has to offer, it was briming with new delights this week, I think due to the early sunshine we've been having. Its Asparagus season and also there are a lot of seedlings on offer.
At The Tomato Stall there was a new arrival of Orange plum tomotoes which like the red plums taste good enough to eat like sweets.

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Post Workout Food

Tonight I went out skating to train for Roller derby.
When I got in I decided to make something refreshing and satisfying, I craved a banana milkshake but didn’t want to load up on ice cream, and so came my post workout smoothie.
If the families bough too much fruit, believing I can eat 3 bananas a day, I slice and freeze them for such blending occasions
I haven’t yet made my own cashew milk, so I used shop bought oat milk. I know oats are very satisfying, good for slow release energy.

Frozen sliced banana
Frozen slices strawberry/blueberries
Oat milk

Put the fruit and milk, leave sitting to chill it, and then blend to a smooth texture, thin enough to drink.


If like me you love Avocados then I’ve got a few tips. I’ll be giving you the lowdown on where (in my local area – North Hants, South England) is best if you need some guacamole!

It seems you either find yourself with rock solid Avo’s that after two weeks are still not ripe, but when you cut into them are brown, not a good mix. Or you have the over ripe ones with a multitude of finger tip sizes bruises on them.

Morrison’s offers pot luck; sometimes turns up a ripe one and if it’s the cheapest own brand your laughing, but mostly they have rock solid (I not patient enough to not eat an Avocado if I see it in my kitchen) and very little choice.
Tesco offer some overprices apparently especially ripe ones, but I often find them to only be average, again a bit of potluck.
My local Sainsbury’s and Co-op, my favourite supermarket, especially for their *Vegan Labelling, are no so local, and I can’t justify driving 7 miles, when I have shops on my door step.


My Best advice is…[drum roll please]

Marks and Spenser’s, you may know that Marks’s is a notoriously expensive shop and only for getting “bits” not doing a weekly shop. But I recently discovered they do a great range of Avocado, which is evenly priced with Tesco and Morrison’s, and sometimes has special offers too!
They do a few varieties, which include the soya crème de la soya crème, Baby Avocado’s which aren’t all stone, like some you can buy and are lovely and in a pack of 4, and usually don’t all ripen at the same time! They are the perfect size to eat a whole one without it being excessive, meaning no half avocado in the Fridge turning brown!

Happy Shopping my little salad (or Mexican food) lovers!

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Vegan Easter Cake

Chocolate gluten-freedom vegan cake with Strawberry icing and sprinkles!

Follow a basic gluten free chocolate cupcake recipe, line any kind of tin, loaf or round with baking paper on the bottom and grease, bake for 25 minutes and when cool decorate.

Enjoy this lovely cruelty free Easter treat!

No little baby chicks, chickens or eggs were harmed in the making of this cake.

Friday, 11 March 2011