As much as I love using fresh herbs, I’ve never had any success growing my own, the grow-in-a-pot ones from the supermarket don’t seem to last long and the ones in the plastic packets – once opened – only last a couple of days before going soggy and, although I’ve tried freezing them, they defrost as a soggy mess and get thrown in the bin. Therefore, I usually prefer to save my money and create less waste by not ending up throwing soggy herbs in the compost bin after only using a tablespoon or so of them.
This vegan cabbage soup with harissa and ginger had everyone stumped when I put it on Facebook for a game of ‘Guess the Soup’. The most popular guess was ‘Butterscotch Angel Delight’ but I have no idea why, do you?
Back in 2010, I entered a competition to win the title of ‘UK’s Tastiest Meat-Free Dish‘ where the winner’s recipe would be included in the range of Linda McCartney products. Fellow food blogger Kate Ford – who blogs at The Veg Space – won with her mushroom and ale pie. I reckon Kate either bribed or slept with the judges because why the flipping flop would they choose a pie over my cheese-covered aubergine, eh? I mean, come on, look – it’s a masterpiece!
I had an urge to make some bread but me being me didn’t have an urge to get my hands dirty and sticky by doing all that kneading malarkey. I dragged out my bread machine from the cupboard, had a look for something interesting in the fridge with which to make some bread but unfortunately, the fridge was a bit bare and I wasn’t sure if pickled onion bread was a thing. However, there was a box of mushrooms that needed to be used up so, after briefly pondering if mushroom bread was a thing, and deciding it was, I decided to make some vegan mushroom bread in my bread machine.
I’ve hankered after an air fryer for a few years but part of me thought, ‘yeah, nice idea but would I ever use it?’ Well, I’ve had my Optimum HealthyFry Air Fryer for a few weeks now and so far in it I’ve made:
It’s taken me a while to start eating ‘normally’ again after Christmas. When I say ‘normally’, I mean actually eating something. I’ve been skipping breakfast (okay, so no change there then – I can’t stand the thought of eating first thing; it seems the height of gluttony to me to stuff your face the moment you wake up) and lunch and I’ve only been eating dinner because it seemed like something I should be doing and even then my dinners have consisted mostly of cardboard boxed frozen stuff heated up in the oven. Unsurprisingly, this diet of nothing has made me sluggish and unfocused and so I went hunting and foraging for vegetables in my local Tesco with which to make some soup and get some vitamins inside me.
As the self-proclaimed Queen of Tofu, when I heard about a new brand of tofu called Tofoo, I was obviously keen to give it a go. Tofoo is different than the usual block of Cauldron found in any supermarket, as it’s ready-pressed (yes, I said ready pressed – no more reams of kitchen roll!*) and ready-flavoured in smoked, Indian spiced and Oriental spiced varieties (the latter two coming in cubes). There’s also a naked one, ready for you to do whatever it is you like doing with tofu (if it’s something other than eating it, you probably need help. Just because it’s called ‘naked’ doesn’t mean you should get pervy with it).
I went to London VegFest the other week and for once, I actually came out looking forward to the next year’s event. On the previous years I’ve been, it’s been cramped, overcrowded and I hadn’t been able to get anywhere near the stalls, let alone try anything or buy anything. This year, although it was in the same space and I’m going to assume they weren’t turning stallholders or customers away, there was plenty of room to walk around and to see and sample everything, and sample things I certainly did.
Since discovering a few months ago when I made my courgette and broad bean soup with chilli and fennel, how wonderful chilli and fennel is as a combination, they’ve been added to most of my soups. Obviously (to me, anyway) chilli goes with everything and, although fennel isn’t to everyone’s taste, give it a go – just don’t add too much as it’s not a subtle flavour.
Carrots. Flipping carrots. I’m not a fan of carrots (except those ones in a tin – I know, I’m common as muck), so whenever I get carrots in my veg box delivery, they usually stay in the fridge until they go floppy, then they go in the compost bin. I did make some vegan carrot cupcakes a while back but, as I’m trying to cut down on junk food at the mo (not helped by being sent a hamper of Ten Acre crisps), I didn’t want to make them again just yet. Soup is always a great way to use up leftover vegetables but if I didn’t really like carrots much, would I like them in a soup? I decided to find out and I can now confirm that carrots make a perfectly acceptable soup. Especially when you add lentils and some spice. As always, I blitzed this soup to silky perfection with my Froothie blender. I know I’ve said it before but this blender really has transformed my soup into something special, and I’ve been making soup for years.