Vegetable Patè

Is lunch boring? Try this vegetable patè. It’s so delicious and easy to make. It can keep in the fridge for a week, but the batch that I made disappeared within a few days! It’s just the thing when you’re rushed for time and want to eat something healthy. A great alternative to traditional liver patè.

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I have been wanting to make this vegetable patè for ages. I was thinking of putting some lentils in it but then decided to make it veggies only. It’s just vegetables that everyone has in their fridge. You can also try a combination of other vegetables. It’s also got spices, herbs and nuts. I added the chopped nuts at the end which gives it a nice crunch. Fussy children might just enjoy this as sandwiches in their lunch box.

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I love this sunflower seed butter that I have incorporated into the patè. I got the recipe from Sean Sherman who is the author of “The Sioux Chef’s Indigenous Kitchen” which features authentic Native American cooking. The honey in the nut butter gives it a lovely depth of flavour. You can get the original recipe from http://www.cbsnews.com.

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This is great served as a simple starter at a party. Serve with crispbreads, baguettes and fresh cruditès. This recipe makes about 3 cups of patè.

 

PREP: 30 minutes COOK TIME: 30-40 minutes

Ingredients

2 medium potatoes, cubed

1 sweet potato, cubed

3 carrots, sliced

2 onions, chopped roughly

1 whole head of garlic

!/2 cup fresh coriander, chopped

11/2 tsp nutritional yeast

11/2 tsp cumin powder

1 tsp fennel seeds, powdered

3 tsp olive oil

½ cup sunny butter (recipe below)

3 tbsp walnuts, chopped

3 tbsp cashew nuts, chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

Sunny Butter

1 cup unsalted toasted sunflower seeds

½ tsp coarse salt

½ cup honey

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 180 C.

Place the sunflower seeds in a food processor and grind. Add the salt and honey and process until a ball forms. Set aside.

Cut the ends of the garlic bulb, exposing the cloves but still leaving the bulb of garlic whole.

Place the vegetables, onions, garlic and coriander in an ovenproof dish and drizzle the olive oil over it. Mix well, cover and bake for about 30 minutes until the vegetables and garlic are tender.

Cool and remove the skin from the garlic cloves. Add all the other ingredients except the sunny butter and the nuts. Puree in the same food processor that you used to make the sunny butter. Add the sunny butter and the walnuts and cashew nuts and mix well. Enjoy.

Korean Barbecue Tofu

This tasty Korean recipe is flavoured with soy sauce, mustard and spices. The resulting dish makes them quite irresistible. Served with rice/rice noodles, they are perfect for a light and refreshing meal.

Tofu is a plant based protein and has about 22 grams of protein per half cup serving. This nutrient powerhouse is rich in calcium, iron, B vitamins, fibre, potassium and magnesium. This vegan dish is a great way to add tofu to your meal rotation.

I left the tofu marinating overnight in the fridge. It just takes a few minutes to make the marinade and it’s ready to be fried whenever you want it. Super easy and delicious.

I used Basmati rice, but you could use any type of white rice. This recipe is from the book Tofu Cookery by Louise Hagler.

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PREP: 10 minutes COOK TIME: 20 minutes SERVES: 4

Ingredients

400 gms firm tofu, cut into ¼ inch slices

½ cup dark soy sauce

6 tbsp sugar

2 tsp dry mustard

½ tsp garlic powder

2 tsp onion powder

Cooked rice

Vegetable oil

Instructions

Mix the soy sauce, sugar, mustard, garlic and onion powder in a bowl. Marinate the tofu slices overnight in the refrigerator.

Heat a frying pan and fry the tofu slices in a little oil on both sides until they are browned. Serve the tofu on a bed of rice or rice noodles. Garnish with chopped green onions. You can also garnish with sliced mushrooms and snow peas. 

Spicy Roasted Cauliflower Steaks

This recipe has become one of our family favourites – even if you don’t like cauliflower, you will love this dish. It’s really easy to make and tastes incredible. And it’s vegan!

To cut the steaks, wash the cauliflower and cut off the stems as much as possible. Cut off the florets at the end. Cut the vegetable into one inch pieces. You will have about two steaks from each cauliflower. Look for ones that are firm and have the florets firmly packed together.

All the gaps in between the florets and the stems have to be filled with the spice paste. You also need to turn the steak and rub the paste into the florets and the stems. The important thing is to use as little water as possible while grinding the paste. I also pan fried them gently for a few minutes in a frying pan at the end.

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It goes really well with hummus or vegan mayonnaise. Or you can just have it with some Greek yogurt.

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PREP: 30 minutes COOK TIME: 40 minutes SERVES: 2

Ingredients

1 large cauliflower, washed well

Vegetable oil

4 tbsp almonds, blanched and sliced

4 tbsp raisins

Cauliflower leaves, roasted

Spice paste

1 onion, chopped

1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste

2 tbsp coriander seeds

1 tsp cumin seeds

1 tsp fennel seeds

2 pieces cinnamon

4 cloves

2 cardamoms

1 tsp black peppercorn

5-6 red chillis

1 tsp turmeric powder

½ cup coconut, grated

Vegetable oil

Salt to taste

Cut off the stems of the cauliflower and cut them into one inch steaks leaving the ends. You can use these to make many things like soup, cauliflower rice, curry, etc.

For the spice paste, heat about a teaspoon of oil in a small pan and add the cinnamon, cloves and cardamom. Add the red chillis and pepper after a few seconds and then add the cumin, fennel and coriander seeds. Add the onions and sautè for a few minutes. Add the turmeric powder and coconut. Remove from heat and cool. Grind into a paste using as little water as possible. Add the ginger-garlic paste to the mixture and mix well. Stuff this paste into the gaps between the florets and the stems and also on the head of the florets, turning the steaks once. Grease a baking sheet with a little oil and place the cauliflower steaks on it. Drizzle a little oil on the top and around the steaks. Bake for about 20 minutes on each side, until the steaks are tender.

Heat a frying pan and gently place the cauliflower steak on it with a little oil and fry until they are browned on each side.

Roast the cauliflower leaves in the oven with a little oil.

To serve, place the steaks on a serving plate and garnish with the almonds, raisins and roasted cauliflower leaves. Serve with rice/flatbreads and/or hummus, vegan mayonnaise or Greek yogurt.

Nutty Protein Energy Balls

These energy balls provide protein, carbs and good fats. It’s just the thing for a quick snack in the morning or anytime of the day, perfect to pack for a long flight and ideal after a workout. They are fun to eat and so easy to make.

If I need an excuse to eat chocolate, then these protein balls are it! The sweet and salty flavour is sure to be a crowd pleaser.

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TOTAL TIME: 30 minutes

Ingredients

2/3 cup almonds, powdered

15 dates

2 tbsp coconut nectar

1 tbsp coconut oil

½ cup peanut butter

1 tbsp cocoa powder

3 tbsp dark chocolate, chopped finely

1 cup rolled oats

1 tbsp chia seeds

1/4 cup coconut chips

1/8 tsp sea salt

Blitz the dates in the food processor to a paste. In a large bowl, place the dates, coconut nectar, coconut oil and peanut butter together and mix well. Add the almond meal, cocoa, chocolate, oats, chia seeds and salt. Mix together until all the ingredients are evenly combined. Form into 12 balls with clean hands and place in a sealed container. It can be stored in the refrigerator for one week or freezer for 1 month.

Banana Stem Fritters

In India, the entire banana tree is used – the leaves are used to wrap food and to eat from, food is cooked in banana leaves, the flowers and stem are used in cooking. In the recent Masterchef Australia, Gary used banana flower in one of the Masterclasses.

Cutting the banana stem is a fine art in itself, but the effort is really worth it. Only the core of the banana stem is used and it has a mild sweet flavour. It is full of fibre and is highly beneficial for treating ulcers and acidity. The raw juice is combined with buttermilk, salt and lime and is a natural diuretic. It is rich in potassium and vitamin B6.

These fritters are the only way I can get my daughters to eat banana stems. They are extremely delicious. This recipe makes around 20 fritters.

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PREP: 30 minutes COOK TIME: 30 minutes

Ingredients

11/2 cups banana stem, chopped

½ tsp turmeric powder

1 large onion, chopped

2 green chillis, chopped finely

1 tbsp ginger, chopped finely

2 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped finely

1 cup roasted chana gram

2 pieces of cinnamon

3 cloves

2 cardamoms

Salt to taste

Vegetable oil for frying

Instructions

Place the banana stem with turmeric and a little salt in a large pan and add ¼ cup of water. Cook on medium heat until they become tender and the water is completely evaporated. The stems cook fast and the mixture should be completely dry. Set aside to cool. Dry grind in a blender to a coarse paste (do not make it into a smooth paste).

Powder the roasted gram dal in a blender and set aside.

Roast the cinnamon, cloves and cardamom in a small pan and powder it.

Add the chopped onions, green chillis, ginger and coriander to the stem paste. Add the powdered spices, enough salt and half of the gram powder and mix well. The mixture should be firm enough to be shaped into small fritters. If it is too wet, add more of the powdered gram dal. Shape into small fritters and deep fry.

Coffee Marinated Tofu with Caramelized Onions and Hummus

Coffee as a spice rub has been around for some time now and I wanted to try it out.

I used it on tofu with amazing results. I baked it after leaving on the marinade overnight and it tasted so good. The coffee flavour was subtle and smoky and it paired beautifully with the hummus and caramelized onions.

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I also grilled the tofu for about ten minutes after it was baked. You can use garlic powder but I prefer to use fresh garlic. I used the remaining marinade to deglaze the pan while caramelizing the onions and they smelt and tasted of coffee and spices.

This recipe is vegan and gluten free. The perfect plant based protein dish to serve with a dip. And really delicious.

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PREP: 10 minutes (not including marinating time)

COOK TIME: 1 hour

Ingredients

For the marinade

  • 400 gms tofu, cut into strips
  • 2 tbsp coffee granules
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tbsp vinegar
  • 2 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp coriander powder
  • 3 tbsp brown sugar/jaggery
  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp pepper powder
  • Salt to taste

For the hummus

  • 1 cup chickpeas, boiled
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 3 tbsp tahini
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • Salt to taste
  • Olive oil
  • Black olives
  • Fresh coriander, chopped

For the caramelized onions

  • 3 large onions, sliced thinly
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 180 C.

For the marinade, mash the garlic by putting it through a garlic press. Crush the coffee granules in a pestle and mortar. Combine all the ingredients together and mix well. Arrange the tofu on a tray and pour the marinade over it, turning the tofu slices several times. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Arrange the tofu slices on a baking tray and drizzle a little oil over them, turning the slices to make sure that the oil is distributed evenly. Bake for 15 minutes on each side. Grill for another 10 minutes on each side so that the colour darkens.

Mix all the ingredients for the hummus except the olives and fresh coriander in a blender and blitz with a little water until the mixture is smooth and creamy.

Spoon the hummus into a bowl and drizzle some olive oil on top. Arrange the olives at the side and sprinkle the fresh coriander on top.

To make the caramelized onions, heat a few tablespoons of olive oil and add the onions with a pinch of salt. Saute the onions, stirring every few minutes, until they change colour and become golden in colour. Deglaze the pan with the rest of the marinade and when the onions are sticky, remove from heat.

Arrange the tofu slices, top with caramelized onions and sprinkle some toasted sesame seeds on top. Serve with the hummus.