I have made a version of this treat in every restaurant I have worked in since the beginning of my food journey. I have seen many recipes including seeds and coconut etc, but I like to keep it simple. Like everything it is best to make with as few ingredients as possible.
Make the Date Jam first. Simply put 300g of pitted Dates in a pot and cover with Water (about half an inch over the top of the dates). Bring to the boil and simmer for about 20mins until soft. Mix together with a wooden spoon until you get a smooth jam. It may be necessary to add more water. Melt 250 g of Margarine and rub it in to 500g of Oats. Add a drop of milk and test how the mix holds together by squeezing some in you hand. You will have to adjust the amount of soya milk.
Spread half of the Oat mix onto a shallow baking tray. Put in a fairly hot oven until it gets some colour (about 10 mins)
Spread the Date Jam on the Oat base and the sprinkle the rest of he Oats on top. With wet hands, pat it down until smooth. Bake until a nice golden colour.a
My first taste of Falafel was in Camden Market in the 1980s. I didn't know anything a bout Middle Eastern food, nor had I ever tasted chick peas or tahini. Ever since the mighty chick pea has been a staple in my diet. Sometimes its falafel, other times Onion or Carrot Bhaji, Houmous or the countless other things you can make. Since the new rise in popularity of vegan food, falafel has become more prevalent than ever as the 'vegan option' on the average restaurant menu, since it is relatively easy and inexpensive to make. I have noticed that it is rarely made in the authentic fashion where the chick peas are soaked and ground raw, rather than from a can already cooked. Here is the difference between a good falafel and a mushy falafel. Traditionally there may be some cooked fava beans as well, but here I am using raw soaked chick peas. If you have any left over from the recipe, allow them to soak for a further day or two. All you need to do is put them in a jar, rinse with water and the drain them. Repeat this process by rinsing everyday, put the jar in a cool place, you will soon have bean sprouts.
Chick Peas (soaked for 6 to 8 hours) 300g
Garlic 1 clove
Ground Cumin 2 tsp
Ground Coriander 2 tsp
Fresh Coriander 2 tbls
Gram Flour 2 tbls
season with salt and white pepper
half the water from tin of Chick Peas
Tin of Chick Peas
Garlic 3 cloves
Lemon Juice (half a lemon)
salt and white pepper to season
Self Raising Flour 300g
Coconut Yoghurt 2 tbls
Coconut Yoghurt 250g
Fresh Coriander chopped fine 1 tbls
Fresh Mint chopped fine 1 tbls
Cucumber 2inch piece diced
Courgettes half and sliced 1 yellow, 1 green
Tin Chick Peas
Fresh Mint and Coriander leaves torn
Zest and Juice of 1 Lime
Roughly blend half of the soaked chick peas with the spices and put aside. Blend the rest of the chick peas and other ingredients to a paste. Mix all together with a spoon. Use a falafel shaper or a spoon to shape falafels. Shallow fry in sunflower oil until golden.
Blend all ingredients to a paste taste and season.
Chop herbs and dice cucumber into Yoghurt.
Mix ingredients into a dough. Let to rest on fridge for an hour or so. Pull off 100g piece and roll into a ball. Flatten out with hand and cook on a dry hot pan. No oil, just shake off the loose flour and put it straight on the pan.
Making an amazing Pizza at home is always going to be tricky for one reason, Pizza should ideally be cooked at 400 C. With most domestic ovens the temperature tops out at about 220 C, but when you open the door to put the Pizza in this drops dramatically. A pizza stone ,or a block of granite can be used in your oven and this works well but I prefer this easy method as it is fun to do. I like make my own Vegan Mozzarella, and Pesto. Its simple and quick as long as you soak the Cashews first. The Mozzarella can be frozen for further use.
500g Strong White Flour
350 ml Lukewarm Water
7g sachet Yeast
Mix yeast into water and add to the flour and salt. Make a dough and kneed for about 5 mins. Cover the dough with a damp tea cloth and leave for an hour until it doubles in size.
While the dough is proving you can make the vegan Mozzarella.
200g Cashews covered in water and soaked overnight.
100ml Soya or Coconut Yoghurt
2 tblsp Tapioca Flour
2 tblsp Agar Agar in 300ml of water
Large bowl of Water with Ice Cubes
Blend the soaked Cashews. Add Yoghurt and mix in Tapioca Flour.
Put Agar Agar and 300ml water in a saucepan. Cover and bring to the boil. Simmer for 3mins.
Add Cashew mixture to the Agar Agar and stir in on a medium heat. Use a spatula to stir and stop from sticking to the end of the saucepan. The mixture will thicken and become stringy. Eventually it will wrap around the spatula, this means it is ready. Use a spoon or ice cream scoop to make balls of Mozzarella and put them in the ice water. The cheese will be ready for use in 20 mins.
Now is a good time to make the Pesto.
Vegan Basil Pesto
2 Bunches of Fresh Basil
2 tblsp Pine Nuts
2 Cloves Garlic
Juice 1 Lemon
2 tblsp Nutritional Yeast
4/5 tblsp Olive Oil
Cut the dough into required amount of pizza bases (3 to 4). Shape into balls and leave to sit while you prepare sauce and topping.
1 jar of Sundried Tomatoes in oil.
Blend the entire contents of the jar. No need to season this as it is salty already. Drain the oil if you prefer and add a fresh tomato to the blender.
Put the Pizza together
Put a dry frying pan on the high heat. Use your fingers to shape the dough the shape of the pan. Put the dough on the hot pan. It should bubble up and cook in 3 minutes.Flip it over. While it is cooking spread a large spoon of Tomato Sauce on base. Take a ball of Mozzarella, tear it into pieces and put on the Pizza. You can grate some Smoked Vegan Cheese for extra Flavour.
Place under a hot grill. When the Cheese is melted, remove from the grill and finish with a drizzle of Pesto and some Basil leaves, and sprinkle of Pine Nuts.
This is a subtle tasting pate that I often make around Christmas time. It is essentially a raw food dish as there is no cooking except the roasting of the nuts.
Hazel Nut Pate
200g Hazel Nuts
Roast the Hazel Nuts on a dry pan. Put them in a blender a blend to a dusty powder.
Remove nuts from the blender, put them in a bowl. Add all other ingredients to the blender and blend briefly (not too fine). Add this mix to the Hazels and mix by hand. Season with salt and pepper. Shape into a log, roll in Black Poppy Seeds, or Sesame seeds, and put in the fridge for an hour. It will then be ready to slice and serve with Toast and the rest of the dips.
This pate has a subtle taste but is lovely on Toast
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Everybody needs to have a ready supply of dip recipes ready for dinner parties or lunchtime get togethers. Here are a few recipes that are easy to make. All you need is a blender and a good local supermarket.
The Dips are best served with Corn Chips, Fried Bread, or Crudites.
I find this combination of dips works well with a simple salad.
Garlic and Herb Mayo
Tin of Chick Peas
A neutral tasting oil such as sunflower or Olive Oil pomace.
Fresh Herbs (Dill or Coriander)
Open tin of Chick Peas and pour half of the water in to a jug.
Add 200l Oil
1 Clove Garlic
1 tsp Mustard
Tlbsp Cider Vinegar
Blend all ingredients together into an emulsion. If you prefer it thicker, add more oil. Chop 1 tblsp Herbs by hand and mix in to Mayo.
Beetroot and Cream Cheese
1 precooked Beet Root
80g Vegan Cream Cheese
Blend Ingredients to give a creamy pink coloured dip
Red Pepper Hummus
1 Tin Chick Peas
2 Cloves Garlic
1 tblsp Tahini
Juice of half a Lemon
Roasted Red Pepper
Roast a red pepper by burning it in a gas hob. If you do not have a gas hob you can roast it using a blow torch, or else brush with oil and oven roast. When the skin is black put the pepper in a plastic bag or in a bowl and cover. Leave to cool down, the moisture evaporating will lift the skin. Cut down the middle, drain liquid from cooking and remove seeds.
Drain Chick Peas and put in a blender with the rest of the ingredients. Season with salt and pepper to taste. This way of roasting the Pepper gives it a smokey taste.
2 Cloves Garlic
Roast the Aubergine over a gas flame turning frequently until it is soft to touch and the skin is charcoaled.
Cut down the middle and remove the flesh.
Put in a blender with a tblsp of Tahini and Garlic. Blend and season to taste.
You can up the Garlic content in this dip and add a pinch of Cumin if you like.
Cashew Nut Pate
200g Cashew Nuts
Roast the Cashew Nuts on a dry pan. Put them in a blender a blend to a dusty powder.
Remove nuts from the blender, put them in a bowl. Add all other ingredients to the blender and blend briefly (not too fine). Add this mix to the cashews and mix by hand. Season with salt and pepper. Shape into a log, roll in Black Poppy Seeds, or Sesame seeds, and put in the fridge for an hour. It will then be ready to slice and serve with Toast and the rest of the dips.
This pate has a subtle taste but is lovely on Toast or Fried Bread with the rest of these dips.
A ripe Avocado
Use a fork to crush the Avocados, or else use a blender for a smoother finish. Squeeze a whole lime of juice into the mix. Finely Chop Spring Onion a nd mix through. Season to taste. The Lime juice will also stop the Avocado from oxidising ad turning brown.
Chop the Tomatoes into the smallest pieces you can by hand. Dice the Cucmber. Chop the Coriander. Mix in a bowl and Add the Juice of half a Lime and half a Lemon. Season to taste.
If you make this salad an hour or two before serving you will notice juise at the end of the bpwl which has seeped from the Tomatoes and Cucumber, spoon this over the salad and check seasoning before serving.
Despite the name, this dish is not related to the traditional Chinese tofu. It is from Myanmar, formally the colony called Burma. Made from gram flour and water this is a simple dish providing protein but little taste. In my version I have added sun dried tomatoes, and olives, you can also add fresh herbs if you like. Burmese tofu is fun to experiment with as it will carry many different flavours. You can infuse it with a spicy curry paste or even sweeten it.
Gram (Chickpea) Flour 300g
Sun dried Tomatoes 50-70g
Green Olives 50-70g
Blend the tomatoes and olives together into a paste. Put the flour in a pot a stir in some of the water. Make a paste as this gets rid of any lumps that might be there. Stir in the rest of the water and put on the heat. When it starts to boil continue stirring for a few minutes more. Add the turmeric, salt and tomato/olive paste. Stir a little more. Pour into a flat bowl and leave to cool. When it is cool, put in the fridge and it will set in a half hour or so.
Cut into slices and shallow fry. You will have to turn it to make it crispy on both sides. It will start to colour. Finish with a sprinkle of salt and serve with garlic mayo and a leafy green salad.
Sunflower Oil 300ml
Soya Milk 100ml
Put Oil and Soya Milk in a container and pulse with a hand blender. It will emulsify quickly, do not over blend as it will split. Hand chop the garlic and coriander then put in the mayo with a half teaspoon of mustard and pulse again. Season with salt and pepper and finally, with a fork stir in the juice of half a lemon.
Happily there are food products out there that are coincidentally suitable for vegans. Some of the plainer biscuits on the market fall into this category such as Ginger Nut and some Digestives. A traditional cheesecake will use digestive biscuits in the base but for this recipe I prefer Ginger Nuts. The base for this cake may also be made with ground almonds insead of biscuits if you are on a raw vegan diet.
Cashews 200g (Covered just to the top in boiling water and soaked for 2 hrs)
Tin of Coconut Milk (chilled)
Agar agar flakes
Lemons and Limes
Ginger Nut Biscuits
Crush half a pack of Ginger Nut Biscuits with a rolling pin or in a blender. Add 150g of finely chopped dates and use 2 table spoons of Margarine to bind together. Press the mixture into a lined 9inch spring form tin and put in the freezer.
For the filling, blend the soaked Cashew until they are a smooth paste. Open the chilled Coconut Milk, the cream will have risen to the top. Scoop off the cream and blend into the Cashews.
Put the rest of the milk into a saucepan with 1 tablespoon of Agar Agar and bring to the boil. When boiling, simmer fr 3 mins and then add to the cashew mixture.
Add the Juice and Zest of 2 Lemons and 2 Limes into the filling and mix well.
Pour the filling onto the base and put in the fridge for 4 hrs or the freezer for 45 mins checking until it is set.
To decorate top with Lemon and Lime zest. You can take a couple of spoons of jam and add some boiling water to loosen it up as a sauce for the cheesecake.
You can't beat the combination of Oats and Raisins. These are my wife's favourite cookies so we have a constant supply in my house. Like all the recipes here, the ingredients are readily available in most shops. You won't need a food processor either. Get the wooden spoon out and get mixing. To store keep in an airtight container. They will last a long time if stored correctly. When you get used to making these cookies it becomes a very quick process.
Self Raising white flour 450g (Gluten Free will work fine)
Vegan Margarine 300g
Coconut sugar 250g
Oat Flour (ground Oats) 150g
Chocolate 70-85% 60g
Sugars and Margarine are beaten together until soft.
Add Oats, Raisins mix at slow speed. Add flour and mix in half way, then add chocolate pieces.
Mix at slow speed until coming away from the side of the bowl.
Cut into approx 24 pieces of 50g in weight.
Bake at 150C for ten minutes. Keep an eye for colour at the edges of the cookie, then will take one or two minutes more.
Leave to cool for ten minutes on the baking tray, then transfer to a wire rack.
When we decided to make all our Gluten Free Bakery products suitable for Vegans it was an exciting time. All the recipes we perfected using eggs and dairy had to be revised. As a test, we did not tell our customers of the change to see if they noticed any difference. They didn't notice at all. These can be made using gluten free flours and work just as well. Its nice to make both of these Tartlets at the same time as they are a great contrast to each other. Some people like Lemon, some love Chocolate, these will please both.
Vegan Margarine 480
Creamed Coconut 125g
Caster Sugar 500g
Soya or Coconut Milk 1ltr
Plain Flour 500g
Self Raising Flour 500g
Oven Temp 130 C.
Plain Flour 500g
Vegan Margarine 400g
Mix both ingredients until they come together as a dough. Wrap in grease proof paper and put in the fridge until needed.
Grate the rind and extract the juice of 6 Lemons
Place Juice and Rind of Lemon in a saucepan with 300g of Caster Sugar and bring to the boil.
Simmer for 3 minutes to make a sugar syrup.
Add in 125g of Creamed Coconut with 80g of Margarine and stir until dissolved (about 5 mins). Make sure
it does not stick to the end of the pot. Put the Lemon Curd into a jug to cool. When it is cool put in the
fridge until cold.
In a bowl take 200ml of Milk (Coconut, Soya, or any plant milk). Add a table spoon of cider vinegar and
allow the milk to curdle.
Place Margarine and Sugar in a mixer. Beat until Fluffy.
Add Self Raising Flour.
Add Milk and whisk it in. Put aside as much sponge as you want for Chocolate Tarts.
For Chocolate Sponge add 50g of Melted Chocolate to the mix and stir in.
Cover 200g of Dates with water. Bring to the boil and simmer for 10 mins with a cover on the pot. Mix
the dates and water with a wooden spoon until it turns into a 'jammy' mixture. Put aside to cool.
Bring 200ml of Soya Milk almost to the boil. Pour over 200g of Chocolate and mix with a spoon until you get a shiny smooth Ganache. Leave aside to cool.
For Lemon Tarts, have the wet and dry Sponge ingredients ready to go but do not mix until you need to fill the tart cases.
When the Tart cases are blind baked, then you mix the sponge and place a spoon full on each tart remembering that it will double in height and you have to leave enough space for Lemon Curd.
Put in the oven and bake for approx 10 minutes. It may take less time as it is a shallow layer. Look to see the top of the sponge getting dry to know when it is baked.
Remove from the oven, allow to cool for 5 minutes and spoon on some Lemon Curd allowing it to spread to the edges and fill evenly. The place in the fridge and serve cold.
For the Chocolate Tarts, Add 80g of melted Chocolate to the sponge mix. Put a spoon full of Date Jam on the tart case and spread to the sides. Cover with a spoon of Chocolate Sponge and bake for 5 to 10 mins. Allow the sponge to get cold, the spoon on the Ganache and spread it evenly. Serve cold.