Peach, Quinoa and Greens Salad (No Oil, No Refined Sugar, Gluten Free)


Summer peaches are the best at the moment. They add an aromatic sweetness to salads which is so good with the pepperiness of rocket and crunch of almonds.
Serves: 4




Ingredients:
3 cups of mixed greens including rocket
2 peaches, cut into segments
1 cup cooked quionoa
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup toasted almonds
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses




Method:
1. Put vinegar and molasses in a jar and shake to combine.
2. Toss all ingredients together.
3. Ready to serve.

Mexican-Style Vegetables (No Oil, No Refined Sugar, Gluten Free)

This is a quick way to cook up some vegetables and give them a delicious Mexican flavour to it.
Ingredients:

1 zucchini, chopped
1 capsicum, sliced
10 mushrooms, quartered
1/2 cup fresh coriander, chopped
1 red onion, sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon paprika
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon soy sauce (use tamari for gluten free)
Method:

  1. Sautéed onion in a non-stick pan until it starts to caramelise. Add a small amount of water if it starts to stick.
  2. Add all remaining ingredients (except coriander) and continue to sauté until vegetables have softened.
  3. Toss coriander through and serve with rice.

Serves: 4

Steamed silken tofu with caramalised onion and mushrooms (No Oil, No Refined Sugar, Gluten Free)

I’ve been missing my Dad of late and trying to recreate some of the dishes that he cooks, although it’s never quite as good as how he does it. I enjoy the delicate texture of the silken tofu with the salty and umami flavours of topping. Some people serve the tofu cold with the topping hot, but I prefer steaming it first.
Ingredients

1 silken tofu
1/4 onion, sliced
1 slice ginger
1 teaspoon fermented blackbeans
2 white button mushrooms, roughly grated
2 dried shitake mushroom, soaked then sliced (reserve soaking liquid)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
Chopped spring onion or corriander
Method

  1. Place silken tofu in a bowl and drain it as much as you can then place into a steamer. This is the serving bowl as the silken tofu is delicate and cannot be moved around too much or it will break. Steam for 10-15 minutes.
  2. As the tofu is steaming, in a non-stick pan, sautee the onion, ginger, black beans and mushrooms. Add some of the mushroom liquid as the onion starts to brown to prevent it from sticking to the pan.
  3. As the onion and mushrooms start to caramalise, add 1/2 tablespoon of the soy sauce.
  4. Remove the tofu bowl from the steamer carefully as it will be hot. Drain as much of the liquid as you can.
  5. Place onion and mushroom topping on the tofu, pour remaining 1/2 tablespoon soy sauce over topping. Garnish with chopped spring onion or corriander. Ready to serve.

Five Spice Tofu (No Oil, Gluten Free)

I love having friends who love to cook. Apart from admiring their delicious looking Instagram accounts, it has given me an appreciation at the accents of Asian inspired meals I create. This week, I was inspired to explore the use of 5-spice. It has a strong aroma, marked by the inclusion of ground star anise, and is used in Chinese and Taiwanese cooking. Traditionally, it has been used mostly to season meats. In the next few weeks, I will be inspired to create plant based meals that uses this spice mix creatively, starting with this 5-spice tofu. The marinated tofu brings a warm and comforting aroma, finished with a sticky and garlicky sauce. It’s a great addition in any buddha bowl.
Ingredients:

Marinate
1 block firm tofu, well drained
1/2 teaspoon ground 5-spice
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup soy sauce

Sauce
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon brown sugar
Method:

  1. Cut tofu into large pieces and arrange in a container where they can all lie flat.
  2. Mix 5-spice, water and soy sauce and pour over tofu. Marinate for several hours. During this time, flip the tofu on its other side so both sides are marinated.
  3. Place tofu in a hot pan, then turn the heat down. If you use a ceramic pan, there is no need to use any oil.
  4. Brown tofu on all sides then remove from pan.
  5. Pour remaining marinate into the pan with the garlic and sugar and slowly reduce until it has a stickier consistency.
  6. Return tofu to the pan and coat with the sauce.
  7. Serve with sprinkles of sesame seeds.

Apricot Orange Bliss Balls (No Oil, No Refined Sugar, Gluten Free)

I am loving these bliss balls that makes a great snack and is a good lunch box addition. However, it’s versatile enough that with an added splash of bourbon, it gives it that added depth of flavor that makes it a great after dinner sweetie for grown ups.

Ingredients:

1 cup dried apricots
1 cup ground almonds
1/4 cups oats (or walnuts for gluten free option)
1/4 dates soaked in hot water for 10 minutes and drained
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Zest of one orange
Pinch of salt
2 tablespoons desiccated coconut plus extra to roll the bliss balls in
1 teaspoon bourbon (optional)

Method:

  1. Place all ingredients in a food processor and blend until a doughy consistency.
  2. Scoop dough into 1 heaped teaspoon sized portions and roll into a ball with hands.
  3. Roll ball in desiccate coconut.
  4. Place in fridge for an hour to hold its shape.

Chocolate Orange Mousse (Gluten Free)


This is the easiest chocolate mousse I have ever made, and a much healthier version than most other standard chocolate mousse. I love the hint of orange flavour that sings the holiday season to me. It’s an easy dessert to bring to a dinner party for my plant-based friends who don’t want to miss out on dessert. It also works great in small lunch box containers. It stores well in the freezer too, if you you want to portion it for later.

Ingredients:

100G dairy free dark chocolate
300g silken tofu
Grated rind of 1 orange

Method:

  1. Place chocolate in a heat proof bowl and place bowl above a simmering pot of hot water. Stir through and allow chocolate to melt.
  2. When chocolate has melted, remove from heat.
  3. Blend melted chocolate, tofu and orange rind until smooth.
  4. Portion mousse into 4 single serve containers and leave in fridge for at least an hour. Garnish with orange rind.

Coconut Mango Chia Pudding (No Oil, No Refined Sugar, Gluten Free)

I have just discovered chia. The look of it used to make me shudder until I tried this chia pudding. It’s amazing! This is coconut mango version that reminds of sipping pina coladas by the beach. Chia puddings are best started overnight and assembled the next day. Once assembled, they can be left in the fridge for a few hours until they are ready to serve. These can also assembled in small containers for a picnic or lunch treat.

Ingredients

1 cup coconut milk
3-4 soaked dates
2 tablespoons chia seed
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup mangoes

Method

  1. Put the vanilla essence, cinnamon, soaked dates and coconut milk through a processor to pulp the dates.
  2. Add chia seeds and leave overnight.
  3. Spoon chia seeds into glasses and layer with mangoes. Finish with a sprinkle of cinnamon.

Lentil Soup (No Oil, No Refined Sugar, Gluten Free)


My friend’s Italian mama occasionally makes this soup and sends it to me through my friend via take out containers. I have never met her, but imagine her making this heart warming and nutritious broth with a lot of love in her kitchen. This is my whole food plant based no oil version of Italian mama’s soup. Happy Vegan Day everyone!

Ingredients

1 cup lentils (soaked overnight and drained)
6 cups stock
1 onion chopped
2 cloves garlic chopped
1-2 carrots chopped or grated
1 stalk celery chopped or grated
1 teaspoon oregano
1 handful fresh parsley or dill chopped
Salt and pepper (optional)

Method

  1. Sautee onion in pot with 2 tablespoons of water until onion is soft.
  2. Add garlic and sautee for another minute.
  3. Add remaining ingredients except for oregano and parsley.
  4. Bring to boil then reduce heat to a simmer for 45 minutes.
  5. Add herbs and seasoning, simmer for another 30 minutes. You can simmer for longer.

Orange Chilli Tofu (No Oil, No Refined Sugar, Gluten Free)

Many of you know that buddha bowls are my favourite.  It’s a great way to add a wide diversity of nutrients in one meal, and the ability to choose your own toppings makes it a great party option to cater to individuals with different food intolerances.

Today’s buddha bowl topping is orange chilli tofu, inspired by a friend who introduced me to Korean chilli paste.

Ingredients:

1 block of firm tofu
1 onion, sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
1orange, juiced and zested
1 tablespoon Korean chilli paste (you can use another type of chilli if you like)
3 tablespoons tomato sauce
1 tablespoon maple syrup or sweetener of choice

Method:

  1. Wrap the tofu in clean towels and rest something heavy (e.g., chopping board, pot) on top of it for 15 minutes. This will drain the tofu of some of its water.
  2. In a bowl, mix the orange juice, chilli, tomato sauce and sweetener.
  3. Sautee onion in 2 tablespoons of water in a non-stick pan until it has softened.
  4. Add garlic and tofu and sautee for 10 minutes.
  5. Add the orange chilli mix you have prepared and cook the tofu some more until the sauce has reduced to a consistency you like.