Hey everyone! I’m sorry that there wasn’t a post last week but I was swanning around Sicily and Malta indulging in all kinds of Mediterranean deliciousness. It turns out there is no limit to the amount aubergine pasta I can eat! Anyway, we’ve returned to […]
I am loving the warm weather that the UK has been blessed with recently. Seriously, I won’t hear a word of this ‘it’s too hot’ nonsense. It is glorious!
But whilst I love the warm weather it is playing havoc with my fruit bowl. Honestly, I can’t turn my back on it for five minutes without its contents becoming overripe and threatening to turn to mush right before my eyes. As a result I’ve had plenty of chances to play around with my favourite banana bread recipe (which also happens to be vegan). These are such a great breakfast treat, they’re moist, light, fluffy and flavourful. They’re also better the next day, so you can bake in the evening when it’s cooler and enjoy them for breakfast the next day!
makes about 12
3 medium, very ripe bananas
50g light soft brown sugar
65ml vegetable oil
135g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/4 tsp of ground cinnamon
100g of muesli
demerara sugar to finish
Pre-heat your oven to 180°c and grease and line a muffin tin with wrappers.
Mash the bananas really well, so they’re quite smooth and beat them with the sugar and oil. Sift together the flour, raising agents and cinnamon and then briefly fold them into the mashed banana mixture, so that they are just combined. Stir in the muesli and then spoon the batter into the muffin wrappers. Sprinkle the tops with a little demerara sugar to add a little crunch. Bake the muffins for 20-25 minutes, until they are risen and fluffy and a cake tester comes out clean when you insert it into them. If you can resist eating them while they’re still warm then these are even nicer the next day, banana bread always is!
Every year Mr C convinces me to cook Burns Night supper for him, playing on his Scottish heritage. I’m always very happy to do so on the proviso that we have a veggie-friendly haggis. With only two of us, cooking a haggis each would seem pretty extravagant.
Whilst we were living in the states I came up with this recipe (or roughly this one anyway) for a vegetarian haggis so that we could carry on the tradition. It’s worth noting that I’ve never tried real haggis so I’ve based the flavours of this recipe on the veggie versions that I’ve eaten in the past. The vegemite and miso work wonders at adding some savoury, umami notes and using white pepper as well as black really helps with the seasoning.
50g pearl barley
50g red lentils
1 tbsp oil
1 medium onion
1 medium carrot
1 heaped tsp shiro miso
100g kidney beans (canned)
2 tsp vegemite
1 tsp dried thyme
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tbsp dark brown sugar
pinch of seasalt and plenty of black and white pepper to season
Bring a pan of water to boil and add the barley, cook for 15 minutes. Add the lentils and cook for 10 minutes more, until the pulses feel tender. Turn off the heat, drain away any excess liquid, add the oats and leave them to absorb the last of the moisture.
Whilst you’re waiting for the pulses to cook finely chop the onion, carrot and mushrooms and fry them in the oil until the onion is golden and the vegetables are tender, add the miso and cook for a moment or too longer. Once they’re cooked pop the veggies into the bowl of a food processor and add the kidney beans, vegemite, sugar, thyme, nutmeg and seasoning. Whizz it up to combine everything but don’t make it too smooth. Add the pulses and briefly blitz it again.
Take a longish length of clingfilm and pile the mixture onto it. Wrap it up and roll it into a fat sausage shape, twisting the ends tightly. Wrap the haggis in foil and fold over the ends to seal it. Now you can either leave the haggis to chill until you’re ready to cook it or place it in a steamer over a pan of boiling water. Steam the haggis for 45 minutes, then unwrap and serve with neeps, tatties and whisky sauce.
I’m totally converted to vegan banana bread, I always get better results from it than from my more traditional recipe and I’m really not sure that I can tell the difference as far as the flavour is concerned. That’s especially true of this recipe, which […]
Before I lived in the States I only ever really thought of tacos as the hard, crunchy shells you buy from the supermarket and fill with chilli and cheese. I was utterly oblivious to the world of deliciousness which ‘proper’ tacos provide, there are so many possibilities. I think even when we travelled in Mexico I missed out by virtue of being a vegetarian.
Mr Colonial Cravings still lets out a wistful sigh upon recalling one particularly good taco al pastor purchased from a food truck in Austin TX (henceforth known as ‘the best taco ever’).
I’ll be the first to admit that these ones aren’t particularly conventional but that doesn’t make them any less tasty, and anyway, why should the meat eaters have all the fun!
serves 3-4 (depending on greed)
1/4 red onion
200g red cabbage
1 medium carrot
small bunch of fresh coriander
1 large ripe avocado
salt and pepper to taste
200g extra firm tofu (pressed for at least 20 mins and patted dry)
2 tbsp cornflour
pinch each of salt, pepper, cumin and cayenne
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp chipotle powder
oil for frying
flour tortillas (if you’re making this for vegans make sure these aren’t made with lard)
Slice the onion, as thinly as you can, and macerate it in the lime juice. Set this aside until later. Grate the carrot and shred the cabbage. Roughly chop the coriander and toss it together with the carrot and cabbage. Add the onion and lime juice. Blend the avocado flesh with the salt and pepper until it is really smooth and creamy and then use this as the dressing for the coleslaw.
Mix together the cornflour and spices in a shallow dish. Slice the tofu into bite sized cubes and toss it in the spiced cornflour blend. Heat a tablespoon or so of oil in a large frying pan and carefully place the dusted tofu into it. Let the tofu sit for a few moments to become crispy and golden before turning it. Keep turning the tofu until it is nice and golden on all sides.
Warm the tortillas, either in a dry pan or just by microwaving them, and then pile them up with the coleslaw and top them with the spicy, crispy tofu.