I love a fudgy brownie. It’s brownie, not chocolate cake. I even like it slightly undercooked to up the fudge-factor. The great thing about a vegan recipe is that there’s zero risk of food poisoning from uncooked eggs!
If you’re the type who loves (or used to love) meat for its rich flavour and texture, this is for you. That’s the thing: usually, when people switch over to plant-based foods, the foods they miss the most have strong flavours and textures. So the challenge is to reintroduce those elements to your plant-based cooking.
If there’s one legume I could eat every single day, it’s chickpeas. They’re incredibly versatile: sprout them to eat in a salad; grind them into a flour to make savoury pancakes, cook them to make hummus, or soak them to make falafel. Amazing little things, and true superfoods (they’re high in protein, fibre, iron and other minerals).
I had a couple of butternut squash that I’d bought pre-lockdown and almost forgot about them: a couple of months later and they were still sitting there, waiting to be turned into something tasty. I can’t believe how long those things last! Talk about pandemic survival foods, squash is where it’s at.
No more overpriced store-bought gluten-free flour blends for me! This blend is super easy to make at home if you can get hold of the ingredients. I got mine from Atlas Trading Co. in Cape Town, but do a little online research to see where you can get the ingredients in your area.
One of the most exciting DIY foodie discoveries I’ve made in the last year. I can’t believe it took me this long to try it out. It’s tasty. Creamy. Great with coffee. Quick and easy. Cheap. Zero waste.
If there was ever an excuse to make oat milk, this is it. These cookies are pretty amazing: I’ve had four or five since I made them yesterday. #noselfcontrol
I’m so into soups right now. Butternut soup, mixed veg soup, lentil soup, tomato soup… They’re easy, pretty quick, and they warm your soul.
I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve mentioned nooch or miso only to be met with blank stares. While they’re by no means staples, and I can definitely live without them, here are some magical foodie discoveries that make plant-based cooking so much more interesting and flavourful (I’ll assume that you already have the staples: whole grains, vegetables, legumes, fruit, nuts/seeds): Nutritional yeastAka nooch. Of course, the first …
A lot of people think that plant-based eating is expensive. Makes sense, with companies (big and small) doing their very best to market their products to a fast-growing target audience. So you’ll see all kinds of vegan products advertised, from vegan cheeses and burgers to imported superfoods and nutritional supplements. What’s less visible, though, is the simple whole foods that …
When it comes to crackers and other carriers for avo or hummus, there are options in the supermarkets, but they’re often either not vegan-friendly, or very processed, or very expensive. So in that context, these seed crackers are a blessing: they’re really (really!) easy to make, very nutritious (high protein, good fats—but go easy on them), and easily adaptable to use different seeds and spices.
Smoothies have become a regular feature in my daily meals when the weather’s warmer, I like making one in the late morning (I’m a coffee-no-breakfast kind of person). I always keep frozen banana chunks in my freezer, and often other fruit, too. When pineapples are in season, I’ll buy a couple, chop one up and freeze it for smoothies. The rest are all easily available pantry items that keep for months.
I had some beautifully ripe avocados on hand, some Swiss chard sitting in the fridge from a week ago (but still fresh because I had the foresight to de-stem, clean and pack them into airtight bags!) and some limes. Obviously, the answer was creamy avocado spinach pasta!
One of the most common questions I get asked is on the topic of gas and bloating, especially from people who’ve changed their diet overnight, from eating more processed and animal-based foods, to eating more high-fibre vegetables and legumes. So my first questions would be: What’s changed in your diet recently? Are you eating foods that you didn’t eat before? …
This cake has been a feature at pretty much every one of my birthdays: it’s a recipe that my mom got from Mrs Lillie, my godmother’s grandmother who used to live on a farm near Groblersdal. I’ve always loved this cake: my mom makes a vegan version for me pretty much every year (except now I like making it too!).
Heading towards a plant-based diet? Maybe the idea of cutting out familiar foods is overwhelming, especially if you’re used to eating meat, dairy or eggs daily and the thought of eating only plants (eep!) is a scary one. I get it: ‘cutting out’ foods can feel a bit like you’re depriving yourself—that your new diet is some kind of punishment, …
I grew up eating black lentils all the time, but I only really discovered red lentils as an adult. And I love them. They’re beautiful, nutritious, easy to cook, and cheap. While most legumes (especially beans) are best soaked overnight before cooking, these guys don’t need any of that forethought that organised people have. Especially split red lentils (same thing, but each bean is in two halves): their cooking time is way shorter than whole red lentils. It’s a wonderful thing for busy (or lazy) people.
Yoghurt wasn’t something I missed that much when I stopped eating dairy: I had enjoyed it, but it definitely wasn’t a daily feature. As a result, I never made much of an effort to recreate the yoghurt experience—that is until recently, when I found vegan yoghurt in the supermarket and realised I could make my own using the store-bought one as a starter. Before then, to make strictly-vegan yoghurt, I’d have had to find a probiotic supplement—and honestly, since I don’t use probiotics, they’re expensive, and I don’t desperately need yoghurt in my life, I couldn’t be bothered.