Posts filed under ‘Vegan/Vegetarian’

Successful Vegetable Broth

Today I finally got around to making the Vege Broth I’ve been meaning to. It took me 35 minutes to chop the truck load of vegetables I had to use, but it was SO worth it.

I have a problem with chopping onions… And today I found a solution 😀

vege broth 002 Brilliant haha.

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After being hunched over the chopping board for ages I finally finished chopping everything up. Then I added 4 litres of water, salt, tamari sauce, tomato paste and dried rosemary (because I didn’t have the real thing).

I brought it to the boil and then lowered the heat and let it simmer for an hour and a half. Once it was ready to come out, I drained it in a sieve and then waited for it to cool. Once it had cooled I put a little bit into ice cube trays and the rest into freezer bags to freeze all of it.

It was so easy and fun to make, you can literally use everything but the kitchen sink in terms of vegetables. I did go out and buy some more veges because we didn’t have any carrots and a broth is simply not complete without carrots.

It tastes SO good!! I tried some and I was so amazed. It smelt fantastic as well.

I’m so pleased to have finally made it. I now have 4 litres of delicious vege broth to use in a ton of recipes.

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Nom nom nom 🙂

Goodnight!

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October 1, 2010 at 6:30 am Leave a comment

Daylight savings is finally here!

WOOHOOO! I am SO glad that it’s finally daylight savings 😀 I love a few extra hours of light in the evening, you can get so much done! I spent most of my day doing this:

gardening   pizza 003 gardening   pizza 004 My step dad and little brother have gone away to Hamilton today so Mum and I made a day of gardening and getting the garden sorted. I worked on that ugly patch of dirt with weeds and what-not (the photo was taken RIGHT at the beginning before I had time to make much of an impact) and around the back in the vegetable garden. I spent collectively about 2 hours gardening today and about 2 out and about shopping for things for the garden with mum.

We went to the garden centre and bought $10 worth of brightly coloured flowers for me to plant in the area pictured above as well and seedlings of veges to plant, potatoes to plant, compost and potato food. I also bought 2 new pairs of shorts because believe it or not I had NONE! I only had my P.E shorts which are way to small for me now.

I made fresh lemonade this morning so it would be there for us to drink this evening because I knew we’d be fairly parched after gardening. I was very pleased I did as well when we finally came inside at 6.20pm and I had the chance to scull back a cool drink. I absolutely love the flowers I planted, just check out the beautiful colours!!!

gardening   pizza 008 gardening   pizza 009 gardening   pizza 011 gardening   pizza 012
I pulled out all the weeds, got rid of the dead flower heads and pulled out some of the unruly plants that were taking over the space. It felt so good to see the garden looking nicer and cleaner with new, pretty flowers. I think I have a thing for gardening ^.^

I cooked the most delicious pizza for dinner, I used this recipe from vegweb.com. I was AMAZED at how it came out and it tasted sooo good! I cooked it for mum and I. I wasn’t vegan because I used cheese, but I didn’t mind.

gardening   pizza 019 gardening   pizza 030 It was so good and I would thoroughly recommend this recipe to anyone wanting something quick, easy and tasty.

Anyway, I’ve got a looong road trip tomorrow to Auckland and back in one day with mum to pick up my Granddad so I’d better get some rest. I plan to do some yoga in the morning to loosen up my joints (which will undoubtedly be very stiff) and prepare for a total of 8 hours in a car.

Ciao!

September 26, 2010 at 8:24 am Leave a comment

Vegan Tofu and Vegetable Stir-fry

stir-fried tofu and vegetables 007 stir-fried tofu and vegetables 008

Tonight I made the most delicious Tofu and Vegetable stir-fry, it totally made up for the chocolate cake earlier on today. I used pre-marinated tofu (the flavour which I forget) and I chopped and marinated the veges myself.

Tofu and Vegetable stir-fry

Ingredients: (choose the proportions according to how many servings you want)
Pre-marinated tofu, firm if possible
Carrots
Capsicum
Mushrooms
Spring Onions
Olive Oil
Lemon Juice
2 garlic cloves
Tuscan Seasoning (although I’m pretty sure any combination of herbs and seasoning will do the trick)

Method:

Remove the tofu from it’s packaging and drain the marinade off it through a sieve and into a small bowl. Put a pan onto a medium heat and add a little olive oil. Once the marinade has drained off, chop the tofu into slices and then into rectangles, put the pieces into the pan and cook until brown.

While the tofu is cooking, chop the vegetables however way you like and put them all into a medium sized bowl. Once all the veges are chopped, squeeze the juice of two lemons into the bowl along with a drizzle of olive oil, tuscan seasoning and two garlic cloves, crushed. Mix it all together (I used my hands) and let to sit.

Once the tofu is cooked, add the marinade into the pan and cook for a couple of minutes. Add the vegetables and cook for 10-15 minutes.

Serve with rice, couscous, quinoa or by itself.

This is SO TASTY it’s my favourite stir-fry to date ^.^

September 25, 2010 at 8:36 am Leave a comment

“Food must be made with love, you can taste it if it’s not”

thai pumpkin soup   chocolate blueberry cake 010thai pumpkin soup   chocolate blueberry cake 014

That right there my friends, is Vegan Chocolate-Blueberry cake from FatFree Vegan Kitchen. I was searching for a vegan recipe to make for lunch and during my search I stumbled upon this recipe. I had planned to make Vegan Pizza for lunch but I was so compelled to make this cake that I had PB + J toast instead for lunch and got straight onto the cake.

I was very interested to give this a go because I’ve never before made a cake that doesn’t use milk, eggs or butter. Also the fact that this cake is fat free (but has A LOT of maple syrup – do not be fooled people, that still counts as major calories) was hugely enticing to me. From the moment the cake went into the oven I was excited and it wasn’t long before the delicious aroma of baking began to fill my nostrils. It baked for half an hour and I was very eager to taste it, I let it cool for 15-20 minutes and then cut a slice and drizzled maple syrup over the top. It’s supposed to be served with blueberries but we only have frozen blueberries so I opted to have the syrup alone.

Unfortunately this cake didn’t taste as great as it looks or smells, but I guess since it has no butter it came out well. In future I wouldn’t use wholemeal flour because it created an odd texture. Plain white flour would most probably be better. I’m not sure that I’d make this cake again because there are so many other delicious vegan/vegetarian dessert options. I’d be more inclined to go for fruit salad or something similar. However, for one who loves chocolate and cake and is considering veganism, this wasn’t a bad substitute.

Recipe_for_Life_TPB__final_cover_version

The title of my blog is a quote that made quite an impact on me from this book that I’m reading right now. I was in the school library the other day browsing for a book to read and since I’m horrible at picking a book I chose this one for the fact it combines two of my favourite things:

1. Food

2. Italians

🙂 That sounds so silly, but I miss my Italian brother Tommaso soooo much, I picked this book with him in mind.

tommaso
Anyway, I’ve been SO inspired by this book it’s insane!! I have so many new ideas for food and I’m so keen to experiment with new flavours and the freshest of fresh foods. I love the heart and soul in the book, it perfectly encompasses my attitude towards cooking. Tonight I’m going to try stir fried vegetables with marinated tofu and couscous. I want to cook the vegetables in olive oil, lemon juice, herbs and spices. I want to keep it as simple yet delicious as possible.

If you’re looking for a good read and you love food, I highly recommend this book.

Anyway, the other night I cooked Pumpkin Thai Soup but I didn’t get any good photos of it so I won’t post it. I was missing a few ingredients so it lacked that little something-something. I might try it again with the proper ingredients.

Hope all is well and that everyone’s been enjoying their first day of the school holidays.

Ciao!

September 25, 2010 at 2:08 am Leave a comment

Homemade Larabars

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larabars 036

Tonight I made homemade Larabars using my own recipe, based off one I got off Oh She Glows.

larabar I used the basic proportions although I made a double mix (which ended up being 4 very small bars) and I just changed the ingredients to suit what I had. What I love about Larabars is that they are both raw AND vegan. Each Larabar in the store has a maximum of 3 ingredients, usually just things like Dates and nuts etc, it’s really great to know that what you’re eating isn’t processed crap. Unfortunately however they cost almost $5 per bar and therefore they’re not something I can afford to have on a regular basis. This in mind I jumped at the chance to have a go at making my own!

larabars 049

The ingredients I used were:

  • 1/2 cup of chopped dates (I chopped them myself)
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut
  • 2/3 cup peanuts
  • 2 teaspoons peanut oil

It was so simple, I added 1.5 teaspoons of oil to the coconut and dates in the food processor and then once I’d processed the nuts and added them to the dates and coconut I added a further 1/2 teaspoon.

I was a little disappointed at how little they were despite having made a double-mixture :/ oh well, they should be good for four school lunches. I’m trying to be more creative with my lunches to avoid processed things like spreads, muesli bars etc. I would like to keep it as raw and vegan as I can while I experiment with vegan food. Keep in mind that I am NOT a vegan, I’m still eating meat and dairy products, I just have an interest in veganism and am investigating the foods and how to do veganism properly because I am interested in slowly transitioning to veganism over time.

I haven’t tasted the bars yet, but I don’t think they’ll be very sweet, but that’s ok. Adding sugar and salt to foods that I deem unnecessary additives is something I profusely detest and therefore I shall not be adding any 🙂

Anyway, I had a shocking nights sleep last night which I blame on the coffee cupcakes :/ I had A LOT of the mixture and it was quite highly caffeinated.  I was wide awake staring at the roof until 3am to which I had a 6am wake up 😦

Tonight I will hopefully sleep better and wake up early to do some early morning Sun Salutations.

I’m off to bed with some “light” reading 😉 Goodnight!
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September 20, 2010 at 9:22 am Leave a comment

Tofu Burger Patties

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tofu patties 021

Tonight I made Vegan Tofu Burger Patties

tofu patties 004 tofu patties 005 I didn’t have any nutritional yeast so I left it out but I would definitely recommend you use at least cheese if you don’t have any because otherwise they come out quite bland. I also didn’t have any sunflower seeds (because I used them all making vegan oatmeal biscuits) so I used Chia seeds instead 🙂 I probably wouldn’t make these again as they fall apart quite easily and the tofu is quite bland. If I did though I would probably cook the onion and garlic in a fry pan first until it’s soft and THEN make the patties, and also I would make sure I had nutritional yeast to add or if I wasn’t making them Vegan, use cheese instead. They could definitely use the added flavour kick.

Next time I buy tofu I’m going to make vegan cream cheese instead. Speaking of which, my Red Velvet Cupcakes have been a hit!! I made 32 and now have six left haha, which leaves me with the dilemma of the fact that I’ve promised my friends I’ll give them some. I’m going to make a new batch tonight or tomorrow but without adding food colouring. Mum seriously detests adding food colouring and believes it bitters the taste, so just to keep her happy I’ll make them without in which case they’ll no longer be red velvet 😦

Today I ordered the book Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World from the Whitcoulls which should arrive in the next two weeks!! I’m really excited 😀

vegancupcakestakeovertheworld

When it arrives I will spend my entire holidays creating the delicious treats within the pages.. I’m content just thinking about it 🙂

Have a great night everyone!

September 18, 2010 at 6:20 am Leave a comment

Red Velvet Cupcakes

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This afternoon I made some tasty (almost vegan) red velvet cupcakes!! I have wanted to try this recipe for so so long and I finally decided to just go ahead and do it. I say “almost vegan” because I actually used a vegan recipe, but the icing has real cream cheese that’s not vegan 😦 So, apart from the icing the muffins are vegan! 😀 Are there any Vegan Kiwi readers out there who know of a good vegan Cream Cheese substitute? We don’t have fancy things like Tofu Cream Cheese substitute… It’s pretty lame the small range we have actually.

I went to the supermarket to buy the extra ingredients I needed and also buy some other ingredients (like rice milk, pumpkin, nuts, garlic and tofu) for other recipes I have planned. Tomorrow I’m going to try Pumpkin Scones again with actual pumpkin this time! Haha. I also want to bake more Vegan Oatmeal biscuits. They were a real hit with my family and totally delicious! Although they turned green after two days and I’m not entirely sure why… :/

Anyway, after spending 40 minutes at the supermarket for like, TEN things I finally got most of what I needed (but no cream cheese substitute unfortunately) and it all came to a total of $40 exactly. After the supermarket I popped around to my friends house briefly to pick up a Pilates/Yoga book she’s lending me. Until I can find the time to attend a yoga class I’ll just have to work from the book. Once I got home I charged my camera batteries up and set to work!

Recipe for Red Velvet Vegan Cupcakes
(based on recipe off Mac & Cheese)

Ingredients:

Cakes

2 cups soy milk
2 teaspoons cider vinegar
2.5 cups flour
2 cups sugar
4 tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tbsp apple sauce
Red food colouring
4 tsp vanilla essence

Frosting

1/2 cup margarine
1/2 Cream cheese (this was what killed the vegan buzz)
2 tsp vanilla essence
4 cups icing sugar

NOTE: don’t forget to buy cupcake liners at the supermarket!

red velvet cupcakes 002

Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 180C on fan-forced. Add the vinegar to the soy milk and set aside to curdle

red velvet cupcakes 008
2. Sift dry ingredients in a large bowl and mix

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3. Add olive oil, food colouring and vanilla extract to the soy milk and vinegar. Add food colouring as you wish until the mixture reaches a dark red colour

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4. Pour liquid ingredients into dry ingredients and mix (don’t worry if you have lumps, it’s fine like that)

5. Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full

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6. Bake at 180C for 20 minutes or until you can poke a skewer down the middle and it comes out clean. (I suggest putting your oven to fan-forced because this mixture made 32 cupcakes for me which meant I had two trays in at the same time and then another batch once those were finished)

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7. Remove the cupcakes when they’re finished and allow to cool for 10-20 minutes

 red velvet cupcakes 022

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8. Once they have cooled, start making the icing by creaming the margarine, cream cheese and vanilla essence with beaters. Slowly mix in the icing sugar (because otherwise it goes everywhere) and beat until the icing is smooth and fluffy.

red velvet cupcakes 047 red velvet cupcakes 049

9. Use a spatula to swirl the icing around the top of the cupcakes and put a raspberry lolly in the centre. Then best of all… Eat and enjoy!!! 😀

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I had so much fun making these and they were so almost entirely vegan!! Argh, stupid lack of dairy substitutes 😡
Anyway, now I have 30 cupcakes and I certainly do not intend to eat them all myself. Tomorrow I’m going on “cupcake run” of sorts to deliver cupcakes to my friends haha, in the pouring rain… Yes, a storm the size of Australia has hit little ole’ New Zealand.

Tonight I found baking so incredibly therapeutic… It’s been pouring with rain coupled with gail-force winds, the T.V signal was lost so all there was was me, my spatula, frosting the cupcakes and it was so nice.. Tomorrow I plan to spend the day in the kitchen making the scones as promised and biscuits if I get the time 🙂 Oh, hopefully I’ll fit in some yoga here and there haha. Who knew I’d become such a foodie? I’ve always hated cooking and baking because I’ve never been a natural. I’m a real klutz, I spill stuff, fog up my glasses, drop stuff, break stuff, forget stuff (usually vital ingredients like BAKING POWDER) and more… But I’ve been persisting and it would appear my persistence is beginning to pay off.

I hope you have as much fun with this recipe as I did, and seriously don’t be afraid to play around with the ingredients and make substitutions. It adds to the excitement!

Goodnight 🙂

September 17, 2010 at 9:28 am 2 comments

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Introducing…

Hey there, my name's Jenny. I have a huge passion for cooking/baking, writing, yoga and photography. I love nature and my favourite thing to do is spend an entire day outside, breathing in crisp, fresh air. Even better if I have a pen and paper with me. I started out running in March 2009 but sustained an injury in October 2009 which has unfortunately prevented me from running. I've been experimenting with other kinds of exercise to find another one that clicks. Follow me on my journey to maintaining good health + surviving high school and pursuing a career in Journalism. I Hope you enjoy reading my blog!

Questions? Comments? Email me at jennyeatliverun@hotmail.com

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