Friday, 27 February 2009

Free chocolate...

...over at Katie, the chocolate covered vegan's new blog click here for the new blog and here for the giveaway post. Katie is giving away a whole case of jocalat! I hope I win, I haven't seen it available here and would love to try it... oh and if you make one of her recipes your name will go into the draw three times! So here I give you my version of Katie's Choco-licious Chocolate Pudding recipe here. The only alterations I made were to add orange extract and some orange zest instead of the almond extract... I also added more cocoa powder and agar powder cause I mis-read teaspoon for tablespoon... in my defense I'm not 100% at the moment!! Nonetheless, the pudding was scrummy! Here are some pics..

I've been eating the veganomicon ceasar salad again yummmmmmmmmmmm, the recipe for the tofu crust as promised ages ago is....
in a third cup, mix;1 stock cube
2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp mustard powder
top up with polenta

coat the tofu, the moisture in it is enough to hold it on then grill until crispy and yummy! I've tried this with both pre frozen and fresh tofu, I think the frozen version works best, the one in the picture is the fresh.

Another thing we've been eating a lot of lately is fake tuna salad. Mike can't get enough of this! It's basically the combination of several recipes I'd seen altered to our taste. The ingredients are kind of rough but I'll give you the idea..
2 stalks of celery
4 pickles
2 tins of chickpeas (450gram)
2 tbs vegan mayo
2-4 tbs apple cider vinegar
1 sheet of nori, toasted and crumbled or chopped
about 2 tbs of dulse chopped up
salt to taste

Chop the celery and pickles finely and blend with 1-2 tbs apple cider vinegar, when smooth add 1 tin of the chickpeas and the vegan mayo and blend until smooth, add the nori and dulse and blend some more. Roughly mash the other chickpeas and combine both mixtures, add salt and more vinegar if it needs it.. try not to eat it all at once!

Monday, 23 February 2009

Lots of baking!

Wow it's been a long time since I got round to posting, I'm a bad blogger! I'm going to have to blame uni work and general tiredness! Here's lots of pics and a bonus pic of my beautiful hamster at the end to make up for it!

It was my mum and dad's birthday yesterday, they're both the same age, born on the same day, very odd coincidence.. We had tea at their house so I helped with the veg and my mum did their main meal, I also brought all the deserts. They request carrot cake, the apple spice caramel cupcakes from vcon and something chocolatey... I tried to make a carrot cake but for some reason it didn't work and wasn't cooked right so I decided to make the carrot cupcakes from VCTOW I did a lemony cream 'cheese' frosting to go on top... that's right, I had a full family of omnis eating vegan cheese!! I also decorated the carrot cupcakes with some marzipan carrots, my grandad loved them! For the something chocolatey I made the chewy chocolate raspberry cookies from vcon but I used ginger preserves and made them chocolate ginger cookies, my brother ate two before we even sat down to eat!

The spread at my house before I took it all round

Carrot cake cupcakes with lemony cream 'cheese' frosting and marzipan carrots!

this one looks like it has a smiley face!!

Caramel apple spice cupcakes
My mum didn't like the nuts on these last time so I roasted some cashews and brought them in a bag for people to put on if they wanted to

Chocolate ginger cookies

Bonus hamster pic!

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Vegetable Love

When I saw Susan V's vegetable love competition on her Fat Free Vegan blog I just had to enter. The competition details are here. My first attempt was a quinoa dish with little beetroot hearts but the shop I was going to buy some heart cookie cutters from decided to close for a week and my cardboard heart shape didn't work so well, it didn't look too pretty, and in all honesty didn't taste as great as I'd hoped it would either! So I scrapped that idea and started wracking my brains, what else could I do, I really wanted to do a dessert but I was not feeling too inspired.
This morning I remembered some sweet potatoes in the fridge, I have only ever had sweet potatoes in their savoury form, roast, crisps, mashed, in curry etc.. I've never tried, or really wanted to try sweet potatoes in their truly sweet incarnation. As I was pondering the sweet potatoes I decided that actually the texture might be quite good in a cookie.. hmm... cue a quick experiment before uni, this was my last chance to enter as by the time I got home there would be no light to take a picture! I quickly cooked my sweet potato in the microwave, I used a really small one as I only made one big cookie, in hindsight these cookies would work better smaller as the edges were the yummiest!

Sweet potato and almond cookies

1 heaped tablespoon of sweet potato puree
3 tablespoos of soy milk (almond milk would be great here)
1 teaspoon of almond extract
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 tablespoon of beet juice (I added this for colour and as you can see that didn't work so well, 1 T of soy milk could be substituted)
1 tablespoon of maple syrup

1/3 cup wholemeal flour
1/3 cup ground almonds
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup dried fruit sweetened cranberries

Preheat the oven to 177c or 350f. First mash the insides of a small sweet potato, I got a heaped tablespoon from mine, I slowly mixed in the soy milk a tablespoon at a time, then added the rest of the wet ingredients. In a separate bowl I sieved the flour and added the other dry ingredients. After incorporating the dry ingredients, add the wet and mix, I poured this onto a a cookie sheet (shaped into a heart later so don't worry, the dough is supposed to be runny!) as one giant cookie but as I said I think it would be better as smaller cookies, it didn't spread much. I baked mine for 12 minutes but smaller cookies will probably cook quicker so check them after 7.

Whilst the cookie was cooking I made some red marzipan hearts just cause I was going a little love heart crazy and hey, it's an almond cookie, and marzipan is always good! After the cookie was done I let it cool and cut it into a heart shape, after devouring the leftover edges and realising it was in fact not only edible but pretty yummy I felt quite proud of myself! I'm not sure if it was the almonds or the sweet potato but the texture of the cookie was the best oil/marg free cookie I've had yet, it was slightly crisp round the edge but still lovely and chewy, the cranberries added just the right amount of tang to a cookie which might have been slightly sickly without.

I have to show you another photo, whilst I was getting myself ready for uni my boyfriend found the marzipan hearts and made a little message for me... not strictly great for this post as it was made out of soyatoo and I'm not sure we could call that low fat!! but here it is, what a sweetheart <3

And finally here is the aftermath of the morning love heart themed baking special!

Happy Valentines!

Friday, 6 February 2009

Todays work out

Considering I called this blog vegan food and fitness so far there has been far more food than fitness! So I thought I would post todays work out, I did strength work today.

Dumbell squats each weight I did 5 reps (weight is always in kg)
16 - 17 - 20 - 20 - 20

Clean and press, 5 each arm
8.5 - 10 - 10 - 10 - 10

To the pull-up bar
1 chin-up (my first in AGES, well since we moved the bar to a higher spot)
failed pull-up
negative chin-up
negative pull-up
negative chin-up
assisted chin-up x 10
assisted pull-up x 10

50 dumbell swings each arm at 10kg weight

surprisingly this workout took me almost 2 hours!!

I had a nine bar (one of my own with no honey) as my post workout snack some quick sugar and protein from the nuts and seeds. Lunch was veganomicon caesar salad with the herby savoury crusted tofu.. recipe to come think I got it this time!

Thursday, 5 February 2009

Some shopping

I've seen posts on other blogs where people post their weekly shop, I liked that idea so I'm going to show you some shopping I just bought. This is not my weekly shop (nowhere near enough vegetables) just a midweek top up!

I went to the mini chinese market, my local wholefoods/vegan shop, green grocers and the mini supermarket, basically the shops walking distance from my house.

Chinese market goodies
2 packets of tofu, firm
1 packet of silken tofu
mock duck
red curry paste (for Mike to try)
and mysterious dried gluten stuff.. more on that later!

Grain wholefoods goodies

Soyatoo squirty cream
Frys strips
Engevita nooch
maple pecan protein ball (a little treat for Mike)

Mini supermarket

Wholemeal bread

Green grocers
Raspberries (a bargainous 69p each!!)
Red grapes

Now then, this wheat gluten... does anyone have any ideas what to cook with it?! I know I have to rehydrate it and flavour it somehow... It looks kinda spongey wierd hehe, the ingredients are just gluten and water...

Wednesday, 4 February 2009

Veganomicon Caesar Salad

with herb crusted tofu.. no recipe for the tofu yet as it wasn't quite perfect.. this salad is sooo good!

Time for truffles?

Chocolate Almond Truffle Balls (high protein)
This makes quite a lot but my boyfriend LOVES these and is half way through the plateful (see background.. he's already eaten quite a few though hehe) even though I only made them on Monday! He also doesn't like them very chocolatey so if you're a chocolate fiend like me I would up the cocoa to 1/2 a cup

3 cups of chopped dates
2 cups of boiling water
1/3 cup pea protein
1/3 cup cocoa powder
6 and a half cups of ground almonds (1 and a 1/2 is for dusting)

blend the dates and water in a blender, I use a smoothie maker which is not great, that's why I use boiling water it helps the dates along!

When the dates are smooth add in the pea protein and blend until combined

In a bowl mix around 3 cups of ground almonds with the cocoa powder, mix well then pour on the date mix. Mix in thoroughly and slowly add the further almonds (2 cups).. the mixture should now be hard to stir and well combined.

Pour 1 cup of ground almonds into a bowl and drop spoonfuls of the chocolate almond mix into the dry almonds, roll into a ball shape and completely cover with almonds.

I'm back!

Well, uni work took over the past week or so, I had 5000 words and a presentation due in last Friday and it all ended up a bit last minute! But I've been baking lots to make up for not doing so whilst working!

First up, Chai Brownies, inspired by le.petit.haricot on the PPK boards, I didn't follow her recipe as I'd been wanting to make some brownies using silken tofu and prunes as I like the texture these ingredients give in brownies by themselves so why not combine them! I topped one tray with the peanut butter cream cheese topping from Joni's blog, I used almond butter though, I think if I were to make it again I would add a little sugar as it was a bit too savory for my tastes. On with the pics and the recipe!

1 cup of strongly brewed chai tea
1/2 cup of dried prunes
1 Flax egg
1 packet of silken tofu
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup cocoa
1/2 cup WW flour
1 cup Spelt
1 and 1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt

First off mix the prunes and the tea in a blender, when smooth add in the tofu, flax egg and vanilla extract and mix until completely smooth.

In a large bowl sift together all the dry ingredients, stir in the wet ingredients and don't over mix!

Bake in a 9x9 pan at 175c or 350f until a toothpick comes out clean, about 20-30 mins, I used a 9x9 pan and a loaf tin but the brownies were a bit thin so I would up the time a little and use a 9x9.

Well, blogger has decided to stop letting me upload pictures, I'll be back soon with a recipe and pics of high protein almost raw truffle balls and pics of vcon caeser salad with herb crusted tofu (sooo yummy!)