Chinese Lemon Seitan
1.35 kg cooked seitan (about four fillet sized pieces)
2 tbsp soy sauce
1.5 tsp salt
250 ml vegetable oil
5 tbsp cornflour
1/2 tsp baking powder
5 tbsp caster sugar
250ml vegetable stock
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 lemon, sliced
Southern Fried Chickenless Nuggets
¾ to 1 cup cold vegetable stock
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 tbsp corn flour
2 tsp salt
1 tsp fresh ground black pepper
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp chilli powder
Mix the dry seitan ingredients in a large bowl then add the oil, soy sauce, and ½ cup of the veg stock. Mix well adding more stock as needed (this will vary from batch to batch) until you have a stretchy, moist lump of seitan dough. Knead for a minute then cut/rip into pieces half the size of how big you want the final product to be.
Boil a large pan of water/veg stock with a tbsp of soy sauce then turn down to a very gentle simmer (the surface of the water should barely be moving). Drop the seitan pieces into the water and partially cover. Leave to cook for 45 minutes then turn off the heat and leave for another 15 minutes.
Mix the coating ingredients in another large bowl.
Drain the seitan and leave to cool in a sieve until you are able to handle it without burning yourself (don’t allow to cool completely though) then toss them in the coating mixture. Give a good mix to ensure every piece is fully coated and leave to stand for 10 minutes.
Heat a deep pan of oil until a piece of bread dropped in turns brown in 10-15 seconds then fry the seitan, in batches, until golden brown and crispy. Drain on a wire rack.
I don’t know about you but I find I am at my most creative in the kitchen when my purse is empty and all I have to work with is what I have in the house (the longer I have to go without buying fresh ingredients the more creative I get). For this reason I always have dried beans and lentils in the cupboard along with plenty of dried herbs and spices, and a bottle of lemon juice in the fridge. One thing I’ve recently started doing is freezing vegetable waste (peelings and the like) in a bag to use to make vegetable stock which in turn is frozen until I need it. (Thank you Thug Kitchen for that idea!) Today has been one of those days where I haven’t been able to go grocery shopping since before christmas and I really really want some snacks. I had a bar of dairy-free 70% dark chocolate that had bloomed past being edible as is so that was melted down and mixed with some vegan puffed rice to make crispy cakes, then I whipped up some oatmeal cookies using the porridge oats and whole wheat flour I had sitting at the back of the cupboard. Finally, I made this simple and lower-fat version of houmous which uses vegetable broth to replace most of the oil.
Simple Lower-Fat Houmous
It’s less than two weeks until christmas, the ground is frosty and the air is crisp. I’m trying to keep my Christmas binge to Christmas Eve, Day, and Boxing day this year so I’ve been looking at coming up with warming, filling, yummy meals that feels luxurious but are still low in fat. If you want to reduce the fat in this recipe further then skip the dumplings. This serves 4 with the dumplings or 3 without them.
Veggie Barley Stew with Cheezy-Herby Dumplings
2 medium onions, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
2 large carrots, sliced
2 large parsnips, sliced
1 medium leek, sliced
1/2 whole swede, diced
175g Pearl Barley, rinsed
1 ltr vegetable stock
1 tbsp shoyu
1 tsp miso
1 tsp dried Thyme
1 tsp dried Parsley
1 tsp vegetable/olive oil
100g Self-raising Flour
50g vegetable suet, grated
50g vegan cheese, grated
2 tsp rosemary, finely chopped
1 tsp dried thyme, lightly ground
2 tsp fresh parsley, chopped
2 tsp fresh chives, chopped
This recipe came about because I had some vegetables that needed to be used up and I had quite a few parsnips. I had made parsnip soup before but this has got to be the tastiest version I’ve ever had!
5 parsnips, peeled and diced
1 small carrot, peeled and diced
1 small onion, peeled and diced
1 medium leek, roughly sliced into rounds
1 small to medium potato, peeled and diced
1 large clove garlic, roughly chopped
1.5 ltrs vegetable stock
1 tbsp olive/rapeseed oil
2 tsp dried mixed herbs
Sea Salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste
This is a recipe for a delicious cheesy flavour dip made from potatoes. Yes, you did read that correctly POTATOES! I found a recipe for potato based cheesy dip by accident and have now developed my own version. I wish I had bookmarked the page but unfortunately I didn’t however full credit for the initial idea goes to that person!
Potato Based Cheesy Dip
500g Potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
1/4 cup olive/rapeseed oil
1-2 cups nutritional yeast (adjust to taste)
1 tsp mustard powder (or 1/2 tsp english mustard)
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper (or more for a bit more kick)
1 cube vegetable stock
This is probably the easiest pasta sauce I have ever had but stills packs a flavourful punch.
1 medium bell pepper (any colour), roughly chopped
1 medium carrot, roughly chopped
1 medium onion, roughly chopped
1 stick celery, roughly chopped
3 fresh tomatoes, roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic
1 tin tomatoes
1 vegetable stock cube
1 large courgette, sliced into rounds and quartered
1 tsp dried mixed herbs
1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1/2 tsp olive oil
Salt & Fresh black pepper to taste
Pea & Asparagus Soup
1 bunch asparagus (or two bunches of asparagus ends) minus the white part, sliced
hand full of frozen peas
1 small potato, diced
1 pint mushroom or vegetable stock
1 small onion, diced
1/2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp chives, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste.
Heat the oil in a pan then add the onion. Cook until translucent.
Add the asparagus, potato and stock to the pan and bring to the boil before turning down to a simmer. Alow to simmer until the potatoes are cooked through then add the peas and chives.
Use a blender to blitz the soup until smooth, add more water if too thick, then add salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot with warm crusty rolls.
Vegan Mushroom Pie
Short Crust Pastry:
225g plain flour
100g vegan margarine
2 1/2 tbsp cold water
Put the salt and flour in a food processor and, while on low-speed, add the margarine. Once all the margarine has been put into the machine, slowly add the water then increase the speed of the food processor to full. Stop when the dough has begun to form a ball.
Remove the dough from the machine and knead lightly for 30 seconds to form a smooth ball. Cover and refrigerate while you prepare the filling.
500g mushrooms, sliced or quartered
1 medium onion, diced
1 tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 bay leaf
1 tsp dried mixed herbs (or fresh herb of choice)
100ml plant milk of choice
1 tbsp plain flour
250ml vegetable stock
Heat the oil in a pan and add the onion. Cook until onions are translucent. Add the garlic and cook for a further minute or two before putting the mushrooms in the pan along with the bay leaf and mixed herbs (if you are adding anything else to the filling, chicken style pieces and such, do so now).
Stir often until the mushrooms start to release their water. Sprinkle in the flour and mix thoroughly then add the vegetable stock while continuing to stir.
Keep stirring until the sauce starts to thicken and add the milk. Continue to cook for 5 minutes.
Turn off the heat and allow the filling to cool completely. Remove the bay leaf.
Preheat your oven to Gas 5 and lightly grease your pie dish.
Take the pastry out of the fridge and unwrap on a lightly floured surface. Cut the pastry in half and roll out one piece to cover the bottom of your pie dish. Pour the cooled filling into the centre of the pastry. Roll out the other piece of pastry to form the lid of your pie. Press the edge of the pastry to seal, a fork comes in handy for this, and trip the excess pastry. Poke a couple of holes in the top and brush with a little milk. Put into the oven to cook for 20-30 minutes, until the crust is crispy and golden.