Jamie Oliver’s Vegan Keralan Curry

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I’ve really noticed in the last couple of years more mainstream celebrity chefs are including plant-based meals in their cookery books and TV shows, which is fantastic.  This delicious Keralan curry is one of Jamie Oliver’s 15 Minute Meals – it’s deliciously fragrant with a great fruity twist from the addition of the pineapple and a wonderful variety of textures. This dish really takes me back to a wonderful few weeks spent in Southern India sampling the amazing light and fragrant curries – A great part of the world to visit if you’re vegan!

I didn’t actually make the minty yoghurt this time but you could easily make it with unsweetened soya yoghurt to make the entire meal dairy-free.

The link to the recipe is below: 

http://www.jamieoliver.com/recipes/vegetables-recipes/keralan-veggie-curry-with-poppadoms-rice-minty-yoghurt

Lentil and bean chilli

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This is a really simple meal and relies mainly on store-cupboard ingredients so it’s a great option for mid-week when you meant to get to the shops but didn’t quite get there!

(Serves 4)

  • 1 onion – chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic – finely chopped
  • Drizzle of vegetable oil
  • 1 red pepper – chopped
  • Half a mug of red lentils
  • Tin of organic kidney beans
  • Tin of organic baked beans
  • Tin of organic chopped tomatoes
  • 1 dessertspoonful of tomato puree 
  • 1 dessertspoonful of Marmite
  • 1/2 teaspoon of hot chilli powder
  • 2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon 
  • 2 squares of dark chocolate
  • Cracked black pepper to season
  1. Drizzle some oil into a large pan
  2. Add the garlic and onion and fry for a few minutes to soften
  3. Add the kidney beans, baked beans, lentils, red pepper, tomatoes, marmite, chilli powder, cinnamon, chocolate, black pepper and a couple of mugs of water
  4. Stir all the ingredients together, bring to the boil and then turn the heat down and simmer for 15 minutes

Serve with rice and vegan sour cream or yoghurt

Mushroom and pepper Stroganoff

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Despite it still (officially) being British summertime the weather here has been decidedly wet and windy today.  This vegan Stroganoff is perfect comfort food for rainy days but also holds its own at dinner parties if you’re entertaining.  You can make it ahead of time (meaning more quality time with your guests) – just warm through on the night and don’t add the soya cream or fresh parsley until you’re ready to serve.

(Serves 4)

  • 1 punnet of organic closed cup mushrooms – sliced
  • 1 punnet organic chestnut mushrooms – sliced
  • 1 organic red pepper – sliced
  • 1 organic green pepper – sliced
  • 2 cloves of garlic – chopped
  • 1 organic white onion – chopped
  • Sunflower oil
  • 2 tablespoons of paprika
  • 1 tablespoon of mixed spice
  • 1 tablespoon of vegan Worcestershire sauce (I use one by Biona)
  • 1 dessertspoon of Marmite
  • 1/4 cup brandy
  • Cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 cup soya cream (I use an Alpro one)
  • Bunch of fresh parsley – chopped
  1. Add the sunflower oil to a large pan and warm
  2. Add the paprika and mixed spice and allow to dissolve in the warmed oil (be careful not to burn)
  3. Add the garlic and onion to the pan and cook for a few minutes to allow the onion to soften
  4. Add the mushrooms, peppers, Worcestershire sauce, Marmite, brandy and a generous sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper
  5. Stir and cook for approximately 10 – 15 minutes
  6. Stir the soya cream and fresh parsley through just before serving

I served it here with long grain rice but it’s equally delicious with tagliatelle

Spinach and rocket salad with oven-roasted tomatoes, avocado, capers, red onion and pan-fried gnocchi

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We eat so many salads in the summer and despite what some people think they really, really don’t have to be boring!  To be honest we rarely eat the same salad twice as it normally depends on what is in the fridge at the time…

I usually pop gnocchi in boiling water for a couple of minutes but this time I pan-fried it for a slightly different taste and texture.

(Serves 2)

  • 2 large handfuls of organic rocket
  • 2 large handfuls of organic spinach
  • Punnet of slow-roasted tomatoes (see previous recipe)
  • 1 bag of gnocchi
  • 1 ripe organic avocado – peeled, stoned and sliced
  • 1/2 red onion – finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons of capers
  • Handful of toasted almond flakes and pumpkin seeds
  • Generous drizzle of olive oil
  • Tablespoon of vegan pesto (I often make my own but Zest do a great one)
  1. Pan-fry the gnocchi in a little olive oil allowing to lightly brown on the outside
  2. Assemble the rocket, spinach, tomatoes, gnocchi, avocado, onion, capers, almond flakes and pumpkin seeds in a bowl
  3. Mix the olive oil with the pesto and drizzle over the salad
  4. Toss and serve

If taking this on a picnic then just take the pesto and olive oil separately and drizzle over at the last minute to avoid the salad leaves going soggy

 

Quick and easy pasta with a spicy tomato sauce

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This is a great mid-week option as the whole thing only takes about 15 minutes to make plus, if you have any leftovers it makes a tasty pasta-salad lunch for the following day.

(Serves 2)

  • 2 cloves of garlic – finely chopped
  • 1 red onion – chopped 
  • 1-2 red chillies – finely chopped (with or without seeds, depending on how spicy you want the sauce to be)
  • Olive oil
  • Tin of tomatoes 
  • Fresh basil
  • Sea salt and black pepper to season
  • Wholewheat pasta (approx 75g per person)

 

  1. Lightly salt the water  and boil.  Add the pasta to cook (follow the instructions on the pack as cooking times will vary slightly)
  2. Add a splash of olive oil to the another pan and add the garlic and onion.  Cook for a few minutes until the garlic and onion is softened 
  3. Add the chillies and tinned tomatoes to the garlic and onions
  4. Cook for approximately 5 minutes
  5. Drain the pasta and add to the tomato sauce
  6. Add the fresh basil, stir, season to taste and serve

Zucchini, broad bean and pea soup

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This is my favourite summer soup and I make it really regularly during the warmer months.   Very simple to make with delicious fresh flavours.

(Serves 4)

  • 1-2 zucchini/courgettes – diced
  • 1 onion – chopped
  • 1/2 cup frozen broad beans
  • 1/2 a cup frozen peas
  • Handful of fresh parsley
  • Handful of fresh lemon thyme
  • About 1 pint of organic vegetable stock (I use Kallo stock cubes, which are also gluten-free as well as being vegan)
  • Splash of olive oil
  • Juice from one lemon
  • Sea salt and pepper to season
  1. Pour the olive oil into a large saucepan
  2. Add the chopped onion and gently fry for a couple of minutes, to soften
  3. Add the diced zucchini to the pan and gently fry for a few minutes
  4. Add the vegetable stock, peas, broad beans and fresh herbs and cook for a further 3-4 minutes
  5. Remove from the heat and blend (I just use a hand-held blender as I find it easier in a small kitchen plus there’s less washing up!)
  6. Return the soup for he heat, squeeze in the juice of one lemon and season to taste
  7. Serve with fresh, crusty bread

Thai green coconut soup with zucchini noodles, peas, broad beans and pan-fried tofu

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I absolutely love Thai food!  This soup is really really easy to make and I love the colours of the vegetables – really vibrant and fresh.   I always crave this kind of food in the Spring when the weather isn’t quite warm enough for salads but when you want something a little lighter than the carbs and stodgy foods of winter.

(Serves 2)

  • 1-2 zucchini (courgette)
  • Organic extra-virgin coconut oil
  • Half a pack of organic firm tofu (I tend to use either ‘Cauldron’ or ‘Dragonfly’, both available in the UK but there are lots of other brands)
  • Soy sauce, ideally low-sodium
  • 1 inch chopped fresh ginger
  • 1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
  • Large dessert-spoon of Green Thai curry paste (check that it’s vegan – lots of them contain fish)
  • 1 can coconut milk – I used the low-fat version but you can use full-fat if you prefer a creamier taste and texture
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup frozen broad beans
  • Handful of fresh coriander (optional)

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  1. Using a spiralizer; make noodles from the zucchini
  2. Remove any excess water and then slice the tofu into fairly thin slices
  3. Pop a spoonful of the coconut oil into a wok or non-stick pan – warm it through until it melts
  4. Add the ginger and garlic
  5. Place the slices of tofu into the pan, drizzle some soy sauce over them and cook for a few minutes each side until browned before removing from the wok

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  1. Add some more coconut oil to the wok and warm through until it melts
  2. Add the Green Thai curry paste and then stir-fry the zucchini noodles for a couple of minutes
  3. Add the coconut milk and warm through with the peas and broad beans just long enough to ensure all the ingredients are hot (but not too long or the noodles will lose their delicious fresh crispiness)
  4. Serve in a bowl with the tofu and a handful of fresh coriander

Enjoy!!

Mushroom, chestnut and truffle oil soup

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There’s nothing like a big bowl of steaming hot, hearty soup to brighten up a cold winter’s day in the UK and this one definitely hits the spot.   Thanks to our friend Nick who first made it for a group of us one cold November night in the Cotswolds a couple of years ago.

(Serves 4)

  • 1 large onion – chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic – chopped
  • A splash of olive oil
  • Punnet of organic chestnut mushrooms, sliced
  • Handful of chestnuts (you can use fresh but I tend to use the ready-prepared ones by Merchant Gourmet)
  • Organic vegetable stock (I use Kallo organic stock cubes)
  • A tiny drizzle of truffle oil (I use the white truffle oil from Truffle Hunter – it’s expensive but it lasts forever as you only need the tiniest amount)
  • Sea salt and pepper to season
  1. Pour the olive oil into a large pan
  2. Add the garlic and onion and gently fry for a few minutes to soften
  3. Add the mushrooms and fry for a few more minutes
  4. Add the vegetable stock, truffle oil and salt and pepper to taste
  5. Heat the mixture through for a couple more minutes and then remove from the heat and blend (I generally use a hand-held blender)
  6. Return the soup to the heat to warm through
  7. Serve with crusty bread

Enjoy.  (Ideally by a roaring log fire with good friends and a bottle of red wine!)

 

Roast butternut squash and sage risotto with toasted pine nuts

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This is one of my favourite Autumn meals.  It’s just somehow really comforting and the colour never fails to cheer me up even on the wettest and darkest of British days.

(Serves 4)

  • 1 large organic butternut squash
  • Generous splash of olive oil
  • 1 large onion – chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic – chopped
  • 1 large mugful of Arborio rice
  • 1 – 2 litres of organic vegetable stock (I use Kallo organic stock cubes)
  • Handful of toasted pine nuts
  • Handful of fresh sage
  • Sea salt and pepper to season
  1. First of all you need to peel the butternut squash.  My friend Sarah B gave me a great tip, which was to immerse the squash in boiling water for a couple of minutes first, making the peeling process a whole lot easier
  2. Chop and de-seed the squash and pop on a baking tray (with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of sea salt) in the oven for about 45 minutes at 180°C.
  3. Once your butternut squash has almost finished roasting pour the olive oil into a large pan and add the garlic and chopped onion for a few minutes to soften
  4. Whilst the garlic and onion is softening add a second pan to the hob and put your vegetable stock on to simmer.  Ideally you want to keep this simmering the whole time so you can add the hot stock to the risotto – Thanks to Sarah P for this particular tip!
  5. Add the Arborio rice to the garlic and onions and stir through on a high heat for a couple of minutes until the edge of the rice grains start to go translucent
  6. Drop the heat under the rice, garlic and onions and begin to slowly add the stock, all the while stirring and “massaging” the rice with a wooden spoon to release all the starch, which will add to the delicious creaminess of the risotto later
  7. After about 15 – 20 minutes you can add the roasted butternut squash and half of the fresh sage
  8. Continue the process of stirring and adding stock until the rice is cooked (don’t overcook it though – you still want it to retain a bit of a ‘bite’)
  9. Season to taste
  10. Serve the risotto with toasted pine nuts, the remainder of the sage and a rocket salad

Enjoy!