Hash Brown Breakfast Fritters

If you have been following me for a while you know that in the past 9 months I have been on a serious mission to reduce my waste. Although I have been mainly focusing on reducing my plastic waste, food waste is another serious issue which we should definitely not forget about.
I personally feel immensely blessed to be able to afford delicious and nourishing food everyday and wasting food which has required energy and resources to be produced is simply not an option for me.
So I couldn’t be prouder to have collaborated with my favourite blender brand Vitamix in their campaign against food wastage. I have been using my Vitamix for over 5 years now and it has definitely become a permanent fixture in my kitchen which I simply couldn’t live without. I still remember the excitement of when I received it for my 30th birthday, finally my cooking life was complete! 🙂
Having a kitchen appliance like Vitamix is definitely extremely helpful when it comes to get creative with leftovers and food scraps which otherwise will be thrown away. For example I use any old vegetables that are lurking in the fridge to create delicious soups. I just chuck in all the veggies into my Vitamix, select the hot soup programme and without any efforts I have piping hot soups in 6 minutes.

Vitamix is also immensely useful if are you are trying to eat a healthier diet and incorporate more plant based food into your meals. I literally use it probably at least twice a day, from my smoothies in the morning, to my dressing, sauces and dips to create delicious raw desserts and also to grind my own flour for baking. The uses are literally endless and it really makes healthy eating so much easier and less time consuming.

For this recipe I have used the latest Vitamix Ascent which has literally blown my mind in terms of its performance and efficiency. This latest model is much more powerful than the one I have and the results are just outstanding in terms of creating super silky smoothies, sauces (you can even make vegan mayo!), dressing, ice-cream, soups and desserts. I have tested also for nut butters which are normally quite hard to recreate at home unless using a very strong food processor or blender. I seriously couldn’t have been more impressed by how much easier and much quicker is to make super smooth and creamy nut butters.

The new Ascent Series does the work of multiple kitchen appliances, making it easier than ever to power through a host of cookery techniques to ensure better, more consistent results and maximum, restaurant-quality flavour at home.

Like all full-size Vitamix machines, the Ascent Series blenders generate extraordinary results using a variety of techniques – from grinding spices for spice rubs and kneading dough to creating velvety purees, sauces and finished vegetarian soups from raw right in the container. The sheer power of the Vitamix blades ensures your precious ingredients are blended in the shortest time. And the friction of the blades heats soup and sauces in under seven minutes without a separate heating element.

If you want to find more about Vitamix Ascent range you can click here: https://www.vitamix.com/gb/en_gb/shop/smart-system-blenders

These fritters have been my latest brunch obsession, they are so delicious, packed with flavour and very easy to make. They are also a great way to use up leftover cooked veggies that you might have lurking in the fridge. For this recipe I have used leftover cooked potatoes and roasted peppers but other veggies like roasted courgette, carrots, butternut squash, sweet potatoes, peas, asparagus will work as well. Just chopped them into bite size pieces and fry them with some spring onion or normal onion for extra flavour and texture.
These fritters are also a great addition to any lunch boxes or perfect for a quick dinner. I like to keep some of them in airtight container in the fridge so I always have something ready to eat when I can’t be bothered to cook. I love serving with creamy avocado but they are also great with salad or baked beans.

Makes about 7-8 fritters depending on the size

Ingredients:

2 leftover boiled potatoes cut into small pieces (no need to peel them)
1 leftover roasted pepper – or just use a fresh one if you don’t have any – cut into small pieces
2 spring onions finely chopped
1/2 tablespoon of dried mixed herbs ( I have used herbs de provence)
1 block of silken tofu (about 300g)
50gr of chickpea flour
50ml of water
3 tablespoons of nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon of garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon of smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon of turmeric powder
1/2 teaspoon of pink Himalayan or sea salt
1/2 teaspoon of pepper
2 tablespoons of oil for frying

To serve:

I love keeping it quite simple as these fritters are already full of flavour and texture, so I normally go for some guacamole or for some fresh sweet chilli sauce

For the guacamole:

1 ripe avocado
The juice of 1/2 lemon
A generous handful of fresh coriander
Salt 7 & pepper to taste
Chopped spring onion and hemp seeds to garnish

For the sweet chilli sauce:

2 Roma tomatoes, quartered
110g coconut sugar
2 other red chillies
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1 Tablespoon lime juice

In a large frying pan add 1 tablespoon of oil on a high heat. Once the oil is hot add in the diced potatoes, spring onion, pepper and dried herbs. Cook the veggies for 10-15 minutes until they are slightly crispy.
In the meantime prepare the batter for the fritter. In your Vitamix add in the water, silken tofu (make sure to drain any excess water), chickpea flour, nutritional yeast and all the spices and seasoning. Select variable 1, start the machine and slowly increase to the highest speed. Blend for roughly 1 minute until you have a super smooth consistency. Add the cooked veggies to the blender, select variable 4 and pulse 4 to 5 times. Leave the batter to sit in the blender for 5 minutes to thicken up a bit more.

Add 1 tablespoon of oil to a large frying pan (even better in a non stick pan) and pour about 2 tablespoons of the batter for each fritter. Cover the pan with a lid (so the steam will help to cook the fritters through) and cook on one side for 5 minutes. Flip on the other side and repeat the process. Keep cooking the fritters until you have used all the batter.

To make the quacamole add all the ingredients into the Vitamix in the order listed above and select variable 4 and pulse 4-5 times, use the tamper to press down the ingredients.

To make the sweet chilli sauce simply place all sauce ingredients into the Vitamix container and secure lid. Select Variable 1. Turn machine on and slowly increase speed to Variable 10. Blend for 20 to 25 seconds. Pour the sauce into a bowl and set aside.

Serve while still warm with the guacamole or the sweet chilli sauce. If you have any leftovers they are also great in packed lunches or reheated in the oven.

 

This post is in collaboration with Vitamix.

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Creamy Butternut Squash Pasta

This recipe has been officially approved by my carnivore boyfriend so I can guarantee you that even the fussiest eater will like it! 🙂 It’s creamy, comforting and packed with flavour. It’s also a super easy way to sneak in some veggies in a pasta dish. The nutritional yeast adds a depth of flavour and a lovely cheesy note, so please don’t skip it! 😉

Ingredients:

About 1/2 a small butternut squash – peeled and chopped into pieces
1/2 white onion – finely chopped
2 garlic cloves – crushed
3 heaped tablespoons of nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon of white miso paste (optional but adds lots of flavour)
A small bunch of fresh thyme leaves
Olive oil for frying
Salt & pepper to taste

To serve: pasta of your choice – in this case I have used wholemeal pasta

Start by steaming the butternut squash for about 20 minutes until soft when pierced with a fork.

While the butternut is cooking heat up about a teaspoon of olive oil and add in the finely chopped onion. Fry on a medium heat for about 8 minutes until soft and slightly translucent. Add in the crushed garlic and keep cooking for another minute. Remove the pan from the heat and leave it onto side.

Place the butternut squash into a blender, add in the onion and garlic mixture plus all the other ingredients. Blend until everything is super smooth and silky. If your blender is struggling add in a tablespoon of unsweetened almond milk.

Cook the pasta according to the cooking instructions. Drain it and stir straight away the butternut squash sauce. Serve with some extra fresh thyme and nutritional yeast sprinkle on top.

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Cookie Dough Chocolate Chips Bites

These are possibly the easiest sweet snack ever! They take no time to make and they are perfect to be stored in he fridge for when a sweet craving strikes. I love the addition of the chocolate chips as they add a crunchy texture plus a gorgeous chocolately flavour.

Makes about 8-10 depending on the size

Ingredients:

100gr of ground almonds
50gr of coconut flour
3 tablespoons of nut butter of your choice ( i have used almond butter)
1 tablespoon of melted coconut oil
6 tablespoons of maple syrup
40gr of dark chocolate chips

Place all the ingredients (apart from the chocolate chips) into a bowl and mix everything together until you have a sticky dough wet pressed between your fingers. Add in the chocolate chips. Try to mix them in as well as you can. Scoop out about 1 tablespoon of the mixture and roll them between your hands into a ball kind of shape. Don’t worry if they are very round they will still be delicious!

Place them in the fridge to set for about 1 hour and enjoy! Store them in an airtight container in the fridge for a week or so.

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Chestnut Butternut Squash & Spinach Pasta

Pasta will always be my favourite comfort food! And this is definitely one of my favourite winter recipe. I love how the sauce is super creamy , packed with flavour and super filling. It might seem a bit of an odd combination but butternut squash and chestnuts actually work perfectly well together and thanks to their buttery consistency they create a super silky sauce without the addition of any cream or butter.
I love serving this pasta with some extra crumbled up chestnut and a generous sprinkle of nutritional yeast.

Serves 2

For the sauce:

1/2 small butternut squash peeled and chopped into bite size pieces
180 gr of cooked chestnut
a generous handful of fresh baby spinach
1 small white onion or 1/2 of a large one cut into quarters
2 cloves of garlic skin on
1 teaspoon of miso paste
2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast + extra for sprinkling
a dash of unsweetened almond milk
1/2 teaspoon of black pepper

Pasta of your choice: I went for brown rice tagliatelle

Place the chopped butternut squash, garlic cloves and the onion into a roasting tray. Drizzle a bit of olive oil, season with salt and pepper and roast in the oven for 25-30 minutes until the butternut squash is soft.
In a food processor add the cooked butternut squash and onion, squish out the garlic out of their skin and add them in as well. Add the cooked chestnuts, reserving few to use at the end to top the pasta, nutritional yeast, miso paste, black pepper and almond milk. Blitz everything until you have a creamy consistency. Add more almond milk for a runnier consistency.

Cook the pasta according to the cooking instructions, drain it and place it back into the pan. Add the baby spinach and a drizzle of olive oil (to prevent from sticking) Give it a good stir until the spinach have wilted. Add in the butternut squash sauce and mix it all together. Serve straight away with some crumbled up chestnuts, nutritional yeast and black pepper.
If you have any sauce leftover you can store it into an airtight container in the fridge for few days.

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Porcini Mushrooms Risotto

This is such a comforting bowl, perfect for chilli winter days. I made this for my carnivore boyfriend today in the attempt to showing that eating plants can be really delicious. Well, it was a success! He really loved it and I have to admit it was really delicious! The dried porcini mushrooms are super flavoursome and really “meaty” adding a lovely rich flavour to the dish.

Serves 2-3 people

Ingredients:

1 small white onion or 1/2 of a very large one – very finely chopped (I have blitzed it in my food processor to save some tears and because I am not very good at chopping)
2 cloves of garlic – crushed
About 150gr of chestnut mushrooms – sliced
1/2 cup of dried porcini – soaked in some warm water for at least 1 hour (don’t discard the water!)
About 1 litre of veggie stock
1 teaspoon of brown miso paste
1 cup of risotto rice (you can also use brown rice but risotto rice helps massively to have a creamy and gloppy consistency)
3-4 tablespoons of nutritional yeast ( or even more, in my books the more nutritional yeast, the better!) + extra for sprinkling
A glug of olive oil for frying
Salt & pepper to taste

Optional – I like to top it with some extra mushrooms panfried in Tamari, you don’t have to but if want to go the extra mile here is how:

About 5-6 chestnut mushrooms
A generous splash of Tamari or soy sauce

Place the finely diced onion in a pan with the glug of olive oil. Saute the onion on a medium heat until it starts to soften and becomes translucent. Add in the crushed garlic, cook for another minute and keep stirring to prevent from burning. Add in the chopped mushrooms and the rice. Drain and squeeze the dried porcini reserving the water. Roughly chopped the porcini and add them to the pan. Add in the miso paste. Pour in some veggie stock until the rice is covered and place the lid on. Cook on a medium heat for a total of 25-30 minutes (it also depends on what kind of rice you are using). The key with risotto is to keep stirring from time to time and keep adding the veggie stock and equally some of the porcini mushrooms soaking water. The rice will gradually absorbed the liquid and eventually one it’s cooked it will be quite gloppy (kind of like porridge). Once the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is cooked adjust with salt & pepper and add in the nutritional yeast. Switch off the heat and let the risotto rest for few minutes. Please feel free to stir in some vegan cheese if you fancy!

To make the Tamari mushrooms simply heat up a generous glug of olive oil in a frying pan then add the mushrooms into a pan with a splash of Tamari. Cook the mushrooms for about 10 minutes until soft.

Serve the risotto with the mushrooms on top, nutritional yeast and some fresh thyme leaves (optional)

 

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Ancient Grains Bircher Muesli With Caramelised Banana

This year I’ve teamed up with Provamel for their Pro campaign, which is all about encouraging people to make positive choices when it comes to food and drink, which means being Pro 100% plant-based, Pro organic and Pro ethically sourced products that respect our environment. You can become a Pro at breakfast in no time with their tasty range of plant-based drinks and alternatives to yogurt!

This is one of my favourite breakfasts to make in advance as you can make a large batch, store it in the fridge for a few days and have it whenever you are short of time in the morning. I normally would have used only oats but I have been loving experimenting with new grains as I find they add different textures and flavours to the bircher. If you want to keep it completely gluten free you can substitute the barley flakes with more gluten free oats – it will still be delicious! The caramelised banana is such a treat and it’s a great topping to make if you have 10 minutes to spare. Otherwise go ahead and top it with fresh or frozen berries or just normal sliced banana.

Serves 2

Ingredients:

1/4 cup of barley flakes
1/4 cup of buckwheat flakes
1/4 cup of quinoa puffs (or if you can’t find them you can also use quinoa flakes)
1/4 cups of rolled oats
1 tablespoon of chia seeds
1 teaspoon of flaxseeds
2 tablespoons of sultanas
1 tablespoons of pumpkin seeds
1 tablespoon of maple syrup
2 tablespoons of Provamel Natural Soya Alternative to Yogurt Free From Sugars
1 1/2 cups of Provamel Oat Original drink

For the caramelised banana:

1 ripe banana, cut into thick slices
1 tablespoon of coconut sugar
2 tablespoons of water

For the toppings:

A handful of fresh blueberries
2 tablespoons of granola

The night before, place all the ingredients for the bircher into a large bowl and give it a good mix. Cover the bowl with a plate or some cling film and place it in the fridge overnight. In the morning you should have a gloopy and creamy kind of mixture.

In the morning, make the caramelised banana. Place the coconut sugar and water into a pan and turn the heat to medium high until the liquid starts to bubble. Add in the sliced bananas and cook for 3-4 minutes until they are super soft and squishy and the liquid becomes a sticky syrup.

Serve the bircher muesli with the caramelised banana, then top with the granola and fresh blueberries.

Sponsored by Provamel.

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Protein Berry Cashew Yogurt

This recipe couldn’t be simpler and yet it’s so surprising delicious! If you are following a plant based diet you probably know already that cashews are so versatile. They can literally be used in so many different savoury and sweet recipes and this is definitely one of my favourite. This yogurt is ideal for breakfast or is also a great option if you want a light and nourishing dessert. I love using frozen blueberries but you can totally use any other berries of your choice. It’s definitely best to enjoy this yogurt straight away but if you have any leftovers you can store them in the fridge for 1 day or 2.

In this recipe I have used FitDelis  Perform Mixed Berry protein powder which works so well in any kind of fruity kind of smoothies or even with simple porridge or overnight oats.

Serves 2

Ingredients:

1 cup of raw and unsalted cashews soaked for at least 8 hours or overnight
1/2 cup of frozen berries of your choice – i have used blueberries
2 scoops of Fit Delis Berry protein powder
1/2 cup of almond milk
a dash of vanilla extract
Optional: if you find the yogurt not sweet enough you can also add 1-2 teaspoon of maple syrup or 1 frozen or fresh banana (frozen will result in a thicker consistency)

Toppings:
granola
Quinoa puffs
Fresh berries or fruit

Drain and rinse the cashews. Place them in a blender with all the other ingredients apart from the almond milk. Add only half to start with. Start blending and gradually add more almond milk until you have super creamy an thick consistency. You might not end using all the almond milk or you might need to add a bit extra. I like to keep my cashew milk as thick as possible. Once it’s all blended serve it into bowls with some granola, quinoa puffs and fresh berries. Other great toppings are a drizzle of peanut butter, coconut chips or chopped nuts. Enjoy straight away!

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Double Chocolate & Vanilla Cream Sandwich Cookies

These cookies are just chocolate heaven in a bite! They slightly remind of Oreos but so much better, if I might say so! The creamy cashew filling goes so well with the crunchy chocolate biscuit and the rich chocolate coating. I managed to find a vegan caramel chocolate which is just perfect for these cookies but any chocolate of your choice will work.
They are the perfect afternoon treat to go with a cuppa or if you are feeling romantic they can also be the perfect edible gift for your loved one.

Makes about 6-8 sandwich cookies

Ingredients:

1/2 cup of plain gluten free flour – I have used Dove’s farm
1/4 cup of ground almond
2 tablespoons of coconut sugar
2 tablespoons of One Earth Chocolate Dream Blend – if you can’t find it just sub it for raw cacao or cocoa powder
1 tablespoon of brown rice syrup or honey
2 tablespoons of coconut oil – melted
2 tablespoons of almond milk
A pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
A dash of vanilla extract

For the filling:
1/2 cup of raw cashews soaked overnight or for at least 3-4 hours
1 tablespoon of melted coconut oil
1 tablespoon of honey or rice malt syrup
A dash of vanilla extract
1 teaspoon of lemon juice
1/4 cup of almond milk – you might need to use a bit more depending on your blender.

For the chocolate coating:
80gr of caramel or vegan white chcocolate – I have used Loving Earth salted caramel but if you can’t find it any chocolate will work

About 1 tablespoon of cacao nibs finely chopped (optional but makes the cookies prettier and add a nice extra crunch)

Start by preheating the oven at 180 degrees Celsius. Lay a baking tray with some parchment paper.
In a bowl mix together the flour, ground almond, coconut sugar, One Earth Chocolate Dream, salt and baking powder. Pour in the coconut oil, almond milk, brown rice syrup and vanilla extract. Mix everything together, first with a spoon and the your hands until you have a solid dough.
Dust your working surface with some flour and with a rolling gently roll out the dough. The dough can be a bit fragile so I found it easier to do only a couple of cookies at the time. Cut out the cookies with a cookie cutter and place them on the tray. Repeat the process until you have used all the dough. Bake the cookies in the oven for 10-12 minutes. Be careful not to bake them for too long as they burn very easily.
While the cookies are baking make the cashew filling. Simply drain and rinse the cashews and place all the ingredients into a blender. Blend until completely smooth and creamy. If your blender is struggling add a little bit more almond milk. Pour the cashew cream into a bowl and place it in the fridge to chill. It will help to thicken it up.

Remove the cookies from the oven and let them cool down completely. Spread about 1/2 of teaspoon of the cream onto one cookies and cover with another.
On a double boiler melt the chocolate. Place the cookies on a cooling rack with the parchment paper underneath and the chocolate will drip everywhere. Cover half of the cookies with the melted chocolate and sprinkle with the cacao nibs (if using).
Let the chocolate solidify for at least 40-50 minutes. Enjoy!

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Popcorn & Quinoa Chocolate Clusters

This is one of the recipes which they turn out to be a complete surprise. I was planning something totally different and then I remember i had some popcorn in my cupboard so I spontaneously decided to add them on and the result is super crunchy and a bit chewy at the same time incredibly chocolately clusters! These are possibly the best movie snack or whenever you crave something sweet to munch on. They are ridiculously easy to make and they are store in the fridge for few weeks.

Ingredients:

80gr of good quality dark chocolate – I have used 2 bars of Goodio Pure Nacional
1/2 cup of quinoa puffs (if you can’t find them you can sub them for rice puffs)
1/2 cup of popcorns – I have used salty as I love the contrast between sweet and salty
12 dates pitted
2 tablespoons of goji berries (you can also use raisins)
2 tablespoons of maple syrup or honey
1/3 cup of walnuts (almonds will work as well)

Place the chocolate in a double boiler and let it melt gently on a low/ medium heat. Once melted add the maple syrup. While the chocolate is melting place the dates into a food processor and blitz until they become very small pieces. Roughly chop the walnuts.

Add the chopped dates and walnuts to the bowl with the melted chocolate. Also add in all the reaming ingredients, popcorn, quinoa puffs and goji berries. Give it a really good mis sp everything is coated in the chocolate.
Line a baking tray with some parchment paper and with a spatula spread the chocolate mixture until it’s evenly distributed. Place the tray in the freezer for 1/2 hour until the chocolate is solid. Break it down with your hands in generous size clusters. Enjoy! I store any leftovers in a jar in the fridge.

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Aquafaba Chocolate Cake

I have to admit that my experience with aquafaba (chickpea water) was definitely not without any hurdles. The first couple of times I tried to turn it into meringues it ended up in total disaster. But this super fluffy and moist chocolate cake is definitely a success! I have used my Vonshef Stand Mixer to whisk the chickpea water until it’s super fluffy, almost like egg white. This special ingredient makes the cake very light and delicate and it’s also perfect in other recipes like muffins or waffles. The creamy vanilla cashew frosting makes this cake perfect for special celebrations, birthdays or dinner parties. I like to decorate it with fresh berries but please feel free to run wild with your imagination!

Ingredients:

1 cup of white flour
1 cup of coconut sugar
3/4 cup of soy milk ( I find this is the one that works best in this recipe) + 2 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup of raw cacao powder
1/4 cup of melted coconut oil
6 tablespoons of chickpeas water ( a bit less than a can)
2 tablespoons of flaxseeds
1 teaspoon of baking powder
a pinch of sea salt

For the cashew frosting:

1 cup of raw cashews soaked for at least 8 hours or overnight
1/3 cup of almond milk – or more if needed
2 tablespoons of melted coconut oil
4 tablespoons of maple syrup
1 tablespoon of lemon juice

Decoration (optional)

Fresh berries

Place the chickpeas water into the Vonshef stand mixer and set the higher setting for whisking. Whisk the water for at least 10-15 minutes until to starts to become white and fluffy, similar to egg whites. Add the flaxseeds and let it sit for 5 minutes.

While the water is whisking away in a bowl mix together the soy milk with the apple cider vinegar. Let it sit for 10 minutes until it starts to curd and becomes like buttermilk. To the milk then add the coconut oil an whisk it all together.

In a separate bowl mix the flour, coconut sugar, cacao powder, baking soda and salt. Pour the chickpeas egg into the bowl with the flour, then add the milk mixture. Mix everything together.

Pour the cake batter into a cake tin (i have used a silicone one). If you are using a normal metal cake tin make sure to grease generously with oil. Bake the cake in the oven for 30-35 minutes at 180 degrees Celsius until slightly darker colour around the edges and a toothpick comes out clean. Let the cake cool down in the tin for about 10 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack for another 30-40 minutes.

This recipe is in collaboration with Vonshef.

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