Thursday, 28 June 2012

Baked Eggless Frittata for the perfect brunch- can be vegan or lacto-vegetarian

Shown here with cheese, but can easily be vegan (add vegan cheese, tahini or nutritional yeast)

Have you ever cooked something yummy then struggled to think of what it actually might be? This was one such occasion for me- but after some deliberation I decided that "frittata"is the closest name I could find for what this is: despite the fact that it is neither fried nor made with egg it does perform the same function in a meal as a conventional frittata would. If you liked my pudla (gram flour pancakes) or vegan and vegetarian eggless quiches, then you will love this. 
  • It's basically the pudla/ quiche recipe (with batter the consistency of double cream) of gram flour plus soya milk and salt, turmeric, black pepper and herbs. It is totally free from added oil or fat as it is baked not fried. 
  •  I used diced new potatoes, sweetcorn, broccoli and green beans but any combo of these plus tomato, fresh coriander (cilantro), olives, peas, broad beans, bell peppers, chillis or sundried tomatoes would be equally good. To make it vegan, simply leave out the cubes of cheese and replace them if you like with vegan cheese, nutritional yeast or drizzle with tahini when it comes out of the oven. 
  • Simply steam the prepared vegetables, lay them on the base of a damp silicone mould or lightly-oiled baking dish and pour on the batter with your chosen seasonings. You can add cheese at this point if you are not vegan. (I made this dish as a quick and easy supper for the kids, so I made it very cheesy!) Make sure there are plenty of veggies and the batter just binds everything together.
  • Put in an oven preheated to 200C and bake for about 15 minutes, or until set. Cut into wedges and serve, either alone or with salad/ cooked tomatoes.

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Prune and Cashew Cupcakes- vegan, no sugar

Top with cashew cream and chopped prunes immediately before serving

I have to admit that lately I've been getting home from work exhausted and ravenous and reaching for the biscuit tin. This has taken its toll both on my waistline and my health in general, what to speak of often not being vegan... so, fed up with feeling sluggish and achey, I decided to bake something healthy and snack-able. After a quick rummage through the cupboard I came up with these little cakes. They involve my old favourite, prunes, and a delicious topping of cashew cream. They contain agave nectar and a little maple syrup rather than cane sugar, which is an anti-nutrient and throws me all out of balance if I have more than a very small amount. You will need a good blender or food processor for the cashew cream. This recipe makes 12-18 cupcakes, depending on the exact size of your moulds.

400g self-raising flour
4 tsps baking powder
about 200g (I forgot to measure- sorry!) finely-chopped semidried prunes- reserve a few for decorating the cakes
400ml soya milk (or almond, oat or rice milk)
200ml light agave nectar
150ml coconut oil (liquefied)
200g cashew nuts
a drizzle of maple syrup
  • Mix together the flour, baking powder and chopped prunes in a large mixing bowl.
  • Whisk together the agave nectar, oil and soya milk and beat into the dry mixture.
  • Spoon into cupcake moulds (lined with paper cases of you like).
  • Bake for about 15 mins in an oven preheated to 180C, or until a skewer inserted into a cake comes out clean.
  • While the cakes are baking, make the cashew cream: grind cashew nuts to a very fine powder in your food processor, then dribble in enough water for a thick, clotted cream-like consistency and a drizzle of maple syrup to sweeten. 
  • When the cakes are out of the oven and completely cooled, top with a dollop of cashew cream and a couple of chopped prunes. It's best to top them as needed to avoid then topping making the cakes go soggy; just keep the cashew cream in the fridge meanwhile.
By the way, this is going to "I Love Baking 6" event at Radhika's blog, Tickling Palates. Check it out for some more delicious egg-free treats from fellow bloggers!

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Fava Bean Hummus- vegan

Fava bean hummus
Fava beans are large dried broad beans from the Middle East, and taste very similar to fresh English broad beans. They make an excellent hummus which goes really well with crudites and/ or baked orange sweet potatoes (which offset the beans' slight earthiness beautifully). 
For my basic hummus recipe, look here. Just swap the chickpeas for fava beans and add a smidgin of sweet smoked paprika for a delicious twist on regular hummus!