Dinosaur Kale Mac and Cheese

Because dinosaurs are cool.

Chili and Lime Black Bean Burger

The perfect vegan burger!

Beer Battered Halloumi

Nom, nom, nom.

Ginger and Chili Tofu

Crispy delicious tofu that's easy to make... say what?

Chocolate Cake Balls

Cakes, but not as you know them.

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Almond and Coconut Biscotti

This month is going to be awesome, I'm going on lots of adventures (which will hopefully all involve amazing veggie food) and the first is coming up this week. Vegan Emma and I are going glamping/staying in what has been named by my co-workers as the Creepy Death Cabin. Despite its terrifying name it looks amazing, it's a little cabin in Wiltshire with a wood burner, a pizza oven, a boat and a lake. We're planning on both having an evening of cooking a vegan meal for each other then playing with the pizza oven (posts to follow hopefully). I decided that this cabin seems like the kind of place I should take up tea drinking and you can't have tea without biscuits, so I decided to whip up some vegan biscotti to take. It's a very simple recipe, but it does take a bit of cooking time. It's totally worth it though, I can't wait to sit by the lake and dunk them in my green tea. 

For around 30 you'll need:

150g plain white flour
200g brown flour
100g desiccated coconut
50g ground almonds
1 tbsp baking powder
280g smooth apple sauce 
4 tbsp vegetable oil
200g light brown unrefined sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
150g blanched almonds halved  
  1. Start by pre heating the oven to 200 degrees and lining two baking trays with greaseproof paper.
  2. Mix the flours, coconut, ground almonds and baking powder in a bowl and set aside. 
  3. Whisk together the apple sauce, vegetable oil, sugar and vanilla essence in a separate bowl until smooth and then add to the dry mixture.
  4. Add the halved almonds then mix together with your hands until well combined, a spoon wont do here!
  5. Once combined split the dough in to two balls and roll them in to logs (I didn't measure the size, guesstimation is needed here, they will rise!) and place them on to a greaseproof paper lined baking tray. 
  6. Pop in to the oven for 25 minutes until golden brown, then transfer them on to a cooling rack for 15 minutes. 
  7. Once cooled slightly chop the logs up in to biscotti sized pieces and place your biscottis on to another greaseproof paper lined tray.
  8. Pop them back in to the oven for 10 minutes, then flip the over and give them another 10 minutes on the other side. They should be golden brown all over.
  9. Leave on a cooling rack until completely cool, then make yourself a cup of tea or coffee and enjoy!

Monday, 23 July 2012

Cosmo blog awards, 2012

So.... It seems I've been shortlisted for best food blogger in Cosmo's blog awards 2012. I cannot express how ridiculously happy this makes me! I would love, love, love it if all of you lovely people who read my blog could vote for me and get your mum, brother, sister, best friend, dog, fish... etc to vote for me too. I wanted to find a picture of me looking ridiculously happy for this post but instead thought I'd share this majestic picture of my wonderful kitchen assistant Mike and I in our Cath Kidston aprons. If Mike in his apron doesn't make you want to vote for me I don't know what will. You can vote here :).

Saturday, 21 July 2012

Teapots, Olney

It was Mummy Hefs Birthday yesterday, so I wanted to take her somewhere special (she's the best Mum ever!) and after much deliberation I decided that I wanted to take her for afternoon tea. The only problem is that I live in Milton Keynes, so there's not really many options. Then I remembered that years ago I had faced the very same dilemma with my friend and we'd ended up in this absolutely beautiful tearoom called Teapots in Olney. I checked out their website and saw they were offering a special afternoon tea, I was automatically sold and called up to book a table straight away. The lady on the other end of the phone was absolutely delightful and asked if we had any dietary requirements and they were more than happy to offer a vegetarian afternoon tea. I've also seen that there's a gluten free and dairy free option as well which is amazing!

The tearoom is beyond cute inside, it literally looks like somebody's living room from times gone by. It's decorated with vintage cameras, tea pots, tea cups, phones, pictures and a variety of other lovely vintage things. The staff are all very welcoming and the atmosphere is very calming and serene, perfect for enjoying a big old pot of tea and some home made cakes. 

The selection of vegetarian finger sandwiches was fantastic! My favourites were the brie and cranberry and the cream cheese and cucumber, but no matter how amazing the sandwiches were I couldn't take my eyes off of the cakes. The cake stand was filled with temptation... scones, victoria sponges, chocolate, cake, meringue and chocolate filled biscuits. I managed to eat it all (well apart from half a biscuit) and man was it good!

The whole afternoon tea experience was already fantastic, but then they brought out tiny eton messes to top it all off. It was the perfect end to the perfect afternoon tea, especially as eton mess is my mum's favourite desert.

It really is an absolutely wonderful place and I am now tempted to try and persuade Mr Hef that Olney would be the perfect place for us to live so that I can visit there all the time. Even if afternoon tea isn't your thing, there were lots of vegetarian options on the menu including pancakes and omelets. They also do vintage tea parties! I hope Mummy Hef had a lovely Birthday, here she is enjoying her cup of tea :)

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Emotional Brilliance Cupcakes

Lush is having a massive and VERY exciting launch on Saturday (seriously it feels like Christmas) and tomorrow we're having a special V.I.P night in our store to unveil the new range. It's called Emotional Brilliance and is an absolutely AMAZING vegan, animal friendly range of colour cosmetics. So I wanted to make some cupcakes for the launch based on the fantastic colours, then I saw this post on our staff room and had the idea of turning the polkadot cake in to Emotional Brilliance cupcakes. I can't really give you a recipe for this one as my lovely assistant Mike and I were making it up as we were going along. But we made them by baking small batches of colourful (I'd use gel colours) cupcake mix in a cake pop tray. Then popping a bit of plain cake mix in the bottom of a cake case, placing the colourful cake ball on top and covering with more plain cake mix. If you want to make them, I'd just say to experiment and play, it's the best way in the kitchen! If you're near a Lush shop on 21st July pop in to check out the new range, you won't be disappointed!! 

P.s I've just noticed that there's a tiny piece of cake missing in the picture above, this is because I couldn't wait to eat a bit before I put the icing on and thought I could cover it up. Obviously I was wrong :)

P.p.s That's Mike wearing a flowery apron, not me ;)

Facon Tegg Hefmuffin

Vegan fish and chips wasn't the only thing I tried at Lushfest, I also tried veggie bacon for the first time (well, not according to my Mum, but the first time I can remember). Before actually trying it I had already decided that veggie bacon was something from my nightmares. It looks super weird and I don't actually like the smell of bacon or the thought of ever eating it so had just disregarded it until now. 

There was a cute little tea and toast van selling tea and toast funnily enough, but they were also selling gourmet veggie bacon rolls. I wasn't too interested until the girl with me brought one, after seeing the bun filled with onions, mozzarella, sun-dried tomatoes and topped of with veggie bacon, I got those dreaded food envies! So the next day I brought one and experienced the delights of veggie bacon, it didn't have much of a bacon flavour, probably due to all of the other delicious flavours going on so I decided that I would give it a try at home. Luckily this week Vegan Emma turned up at my door with Redwoods veggie bacon, tofu and english muffins in tow (we're clearly on the same wave length). We were going to make tofu scramble, but then Emma told me she's seen some kind of tofu egg bacon muffin on Vegan Zombie and we knew we had to try and re-create it! This one tasted really bacony to me, (not so much to my mum who eats the real thing) I felt like I was cheating on my vegetarian self a bit, but it was really yummy and the tofu egg was the best! It's super easy to make and perfect for lazy Sunday mornings.

To make 2:

200g drained tofu (I also find it's better if it's been frozen and defrosted) cut in to a circular shape (the same size as the muffin)
2tsp turmeric
2tsp paprika
a very large pinch of salt and pepper
50g plain flour
A large glug of olive oil
4 rashers of redwoods bacon rashers
2 English muffins
Vegan marge

  1. Put the turmeric, paprika, salt and pepper on to a plate then pop the tofu on top, flip it over and make sure its well coated all over, then do the same with the flour and make sure it's well coated. 
  2. Pour your olive oil in to a frying pan and turn up to a high heat, then place your tofu egg into the pan. 
  3. Fry on each side until golden brown then turn the heat right down. 
  4. Cook your bacon rashers in a separate pan to your liking (we used a griddle pan for a few minutes for a bit of crunch).
  5. Then toast your muffin, butter (I mean vegan marge) it up, place your tofu egg on then your bacon and complete your Bacon Tegg Hefmuffin with it's little muffin hat. 
  6. We served ours up with garlicy spinach and mushrooms (I love Emma enough to accept them on my plate when she's around) and loads of tomato ketchup. YUM. 

Monday, 9 July 2012

Something Fishy

Sorry I haven't blogged in over two weeks, I've been off having super fun times and not had much time to do anything else. I spent a week in rural france stuffing myself with vegetarian delights (which isn't all that easy!) and last week I was off at Lushfest, which is not only a fantastic festival showcasing a brilliant company (who I happen to work for) but it was also 100% vegetarian. Meaning I could fatty on down on a whole load of meat free food (which I did, of course!) I scoped the food situation before I went and nearly did a little wee when I saw that Something Fishy were going to be there. If anything is going to make a little excited wee come out it's going to be VEGAN FISH AND CHIPS. I've seen them around but never had vegan fish and chips from their van before so I knew this was my chance.

It was seriously good, I never really liked fish but I do miss battered food and this satisfied a long old craving. The 'fish' was delicious, super batery and crunchy and the chips were fantastic too. Not only did it taste amazing, but they give all their proceeds to grass root organisations and animal sanctuaries, really putting the guilt free in to guilt free good! The only thing that could have made it better were mushy peas, but I was too excited to even spot those on the menu! If they're ever at a location near you, try it, you won't be disappointed.

N.B After I posted this, vegan Emma reminded me that not only have I eaten vegan fish and chips before I've also blogged about it! I have the worst memory!

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