A Cornish girl's food adventures

Tag: vegan

Sweet potato & miso soup

Sweet potato & miso soup

I eat gallons of soup during the winter months. Seriously, I get through vats of the stuff. It’s so quick and easy, especially creamy blended soups, you can have yourself a warming veg packed meal ready within 30 minutes or so from start to finish. […]

Vegan haggis

Vegan haggis

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 […]

Chocolate and peanut butter banana bread (vegan)

Chocolate and peanut butter banana bread (vegan)

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 really does have it all going on! Rich dark chocolate, sweet fruity bananas and creamy peanut butter – pure heaven in banana bread form!

Ingredients
3 medium, very ripe bananas
50g light soft brown sugar
65ml vegetable oil
50g peanut butter (smooth or crunchy is fine but try to use one that’s palm oil free)
135g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
pinch of ground cinnamon
75g dairy-free dark chocolate chips (or just chop up some chocolate)

Pre-heat your oven to 180°c and grease and line a loaf tin.
Mash the bananas really well and beat them with the sugar and oil. Mix in the peanut butter. Sift together the flour, raising agents and cinnamon and then briefly fold them into the wet ingredients, so that they are just combined. Fold in the chocolate and then transfer the batter to the prepared tin. Level off the top and bake the banana bread for 35-40 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean when you insert it into the loaf.

Turn the cake out onto a wire rack and leave it to cool. To enjoy the banana bread at its best, wrap it tightly in cling film and leave it until the next day. Banana bread is always better the next day!

Pumpkin chocolate cake (vegan)

Pumpkin chocolate cake (vegan)

When we lived in America people would get very excited about the fact that on 1st November all of the Halloween candy in the shops would be super-cheap. I’m not sure that you could make candy corn cheap enough for me to eat it! We […]

Crispy tofu tacos – with avocado coleslaw

Crispy tofu tacos – with avocado coleslaw

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 […]

Maple tofu bao buns

Maple tofu bao buns

I love these sweet, soft, fluffy pillows of dough but it’s not always easy to find non-meat versions. The last time we were in NYC we did a food crawl (what we do when there are just too many great places to eat and not enough meals to do it in!) We basically graze our way around the city. Anyway, one of our many stops was at Baohaus for a couple of delicious Chinese steamed buns filled with tofu. The only other place I’ve been able to indulge in them was at Continental in Philadelphia, where they were filled with spicy, plump buffalo shrimp – amazing!
Once you get used to the idea of steaming these rather than baking them they’re actually very easy, just like making any other basic white bread. You want really firm tofu for this so it’s worth pressing it to get as much moisture as possible out of it. You also need to marinate it for at least 30 minutes to give it plenty of flavour.

Ingredients
makes 4 big buns or 6 snack sized ones
dough
5g yeast
150ml (ish) warm water
225g strong white bread flour
25g sugar
filling
200g extra firm tofu (cut into steaks and pressed for 15 minutes)
1 tbsp dark maple syrup
1 tbsp dark soy sauce
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 tsp chili sauce (I use sriracha)
1 clove garlic
1 inch fresh ginger
fresh coriander and chili (optional) to serve

Add the yeast to the water and set it aside for a minute or two. Whisk together the flour and sugar in a large mixing bowl and then mix in the water to form a soft dough. If it’s a little dry add a touch more water, a little sticky add a tiny bit more flour. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead it for about 10 minutes until it becomes soft, smooth and stretchy.
Clean the mixing bowl and lightly oil it before placing the dough back into it and covering with cling film. Pop the bowl in a warm place and leave the dough for about an hour to double in size.
Meanwhile you can start the marinade for the tofu. Grate the garlic and ginger and combine it with everything else in a baking dish. Cut the tofu into triangles and toss them in the marinade. Leave for 30 minutes to soak up all the flavours.
When the dough has risen, knock it back a little and then divide it into 4 or 6 pieces (depending on how big you want your buns). Shape the pieces into balls and then roll them out on a lightly floured surface into an oval shape. Cut squares of grease-proof paper and fold each in half diagonally to make a triangle. Place these onto the dough and then fold each oval in half over it to create your buns. Put them on a board or tray covered with grease-proof paper and then loosely cover them with oiled cling film and leave them somewhere warm to rise again for 30 minutes.
Pre-heat your oven to 180°c and bake the tofu for 25-30 minutes, turning occasionally, until the pieces are sticky and a little crisp around the edges.
Cut up the grease-proof under the buns so that each one sits on an individual piece. Set a steamer over a pan of boiling water (a steel one works fine, you don’t have to have a bamboo one) and steam the buns in batches for about 8 minutes, until the dough is cooked through and the buns are puffy.
Fill the buns with a couple of wedges of the tofu and add a generous garnish of fresh coriander and a little fresh red chili.

Vegan banana, coconut and poppyseed cake

Vegan banana, coconut and poppyseed cake

I can’t get over how well this turned out. I’m always a little bit apprehensive when I make up a vegan cake recipe, it’s a little bit out of my comfort zone but I do enjoy the challenge. This (in my opinion) is actually better […]

Tahini, honey and cocoa cake

Tahini, honey and cocoa cake

This is a not-too-sweet cake with a generous ‘meaty’ crumb. Perfect with a cup of espresso or Turkish coffee. It’s wonderfully dense and the tahini gives it a lovely slightly sticky texture, it sort of coats your mouth, a little like peanut butter does. During […]

Aubergine, barley & miso stew

Aubergine, barley & miso stew

Aubergine, barley and miso stew

The weather here is definitely getting better but it doesn’t quite feel like we’re in full spring mode yet. There are still some evenings when a hearty, warming bowl of stew sounds very appealing.
This is a comforting wholesome dish of meltingly soft aubergine, chewy barley and tangy sweet roasted tomatoes in a rich savoury miso gravy. I love aubergine when it’s been cooked long and slow, the silky texture it takes on is just glorious. They’re also generally quite an inexpensive ingredient.
I think even the most devoted of meat eaters could get on board with the wonderful umami flavours of this hot-pot. This is a really simple but tasty dish that requires only minimal supervision, which is always a good thing.

Aubergine, barley and miso stew

Ingredients
serves 4
1 large aubergine (firm & heavy for its size)
1 red onion
150g cherry tomatoes
1 clove garlic
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp chili flakes (optional)
big pinch black pepper
1 tin tomatoes
2 tbsp white miso
250ml boiling water
100g pearl barley

Aubergine, barley and miso stew

Pre-heat your oven to 200°c. Halve the cherry tomatoes and cut the onion and aubergine into chunky pieces. Toss them with the oil and seasonings in a roasting tin with the unpeeled garlic. Roast the vegetables for 1 hour, tossing them halfway through cooking, so that they are just starting to brown and char a little.
Roughly chop the tinned tomatoes and add them (and any juice) to the roasted veg. Peel and crush the garlic. Transfer it all to a large casserole dish and mix in the barley. Dissolve the miso with the hot water and pour this into the dish. Cover it and return it to the oven for a further 45 minutes, until the barley is tender but still a little chewy and the sauce has thickened. Let the dish stand for 5 minutes before garnishing it with chopped parsley and serving.

Aubergine, barley and miso stew