Gousto Recipe Box Review

Gousto recipe box

Gousto recipe boxes are different to the Riverford recipe boxes you might have seen me review here and here. They’re different because not only do you get to choose which recipes out of a changing choice of ten (not all vegetarian) you want to cook that week instead of having them chosen for you, but you can also choose whether to have two, three or four recipes a week, and whether you’d like them to serve two or four people.

Gousto asked me if I’d like to review a box and, well, you know me – I never say no to free food, so here’s my thoughts on what I received.

It took me a while to choose two out of the four vegetarian options; I almost went for a creamy mushroom pasta dish, but then I remembered that although the Meat Eater loves cream, mushrooms and pasta, he hates creamy mushroom pasta dishes, so that was off the menu. I can’t remember what the other dish I discounted was but I was happy with my choices of melty mushroom burger and the spinach and veggie mince lasagne.

My box of food turned up on schedule, with the products that needed to be in a fridge, wrapped up in a wool bag. I don’t know why, but these wool cool bags make me as squeamish as I would be if my food arrived inside an actual sheep and not just its coat.

Gousto recipe box

As is usual with recipe boxes, the food is accompanied by a recipe card, with a list of ingredients, step-by-step instructions and a photo of how it should turn out, if you don’t mess it up too much. All the ingredients are measured out for you and clearly labelled so you don’t get your basil mixed up with your spinach. One of the good things about having everything separate is then you can leave out what you or someone you’re cooking for dislikes – in my case, I left out the olives as the Meat Eater doesn’t like them.

Gousto recipe box melty mushroom burger

Ingredients for the melty mushroom burgers in the Gousto recipe box
Ingredients for the melty mushroom burgers

Gousto recipe box melty mushroom

We both enjoyed these melty mushroom burgers (portobello mushrooms, topped with mozzarella and served in a warmed ciabatta roll), accompanied with roasted potatoes and salsa for which the ingredients were also provided. The quantities provided were perfect for two people and this is a dish I’ll definitely be making again.

Gousto recipe box spinach and veggie mince lasagne

Ingredients for the spinach and veggie mince lasagne in the Gousto recipe box
Ingredients for the spinach and veggie mince lasagne

Gousto spinach and veggie mince lasagne

Gousto spinach and veggie mince lasagne

I thought the next dish – spinach and veggie mince lasagne – was a bit of an odd choice for a company that prides itself on fresh, organic produce. Veggie mince is usually regarded as a processed food so it’s not something I’d expect to be included but there’s nothing to complain about this tasty dish, and it’s definitely the first time I’ve had Henderson’s relish and baharat in a lasagne. In fact, it’s the first time ever I’ve had Henderson’s relish and baharat (a spice mixture used in Middle Eastern cuisine). Gousto didn’t provide the flour, butter or milk for this and I wasn’t sure why this was. Considering other chilled ingredients came in a cool bag, couldn’t the butter and milk be provided too? That’s just a slight quibble and, again, this made a perfect amount for two people and would even serve three or four if you served it with vegetables and garlic bread.

Gousto recipe box subscription service

Gousto recipe boxes work on a weekly subscription basis – you place your order three days before your preferred delivery date each week but you’re not committed to receiving a box each week, so if you want to skip a week for whatever reason or you want to cancel your subscription altogether, you can do this at any time. Gousto boxes cost:

  • 2 recipes for 2 people – £27.49 per week
  • 2 recipes for 4 people – £41.99 per week
  • 3 recipes for 2 people – £34.99 per week
  • 3 recipes for 4 people – £51.99 per week
  • 4 recipes for 2 people – £41.99 per week
  • 4 recipes for 4 people – £59.99 per week

but when you take into account their convenience and how much you’d spend on ingredients just to use a bit and have the rest languish in a cupboard (although I said I’ve never had Henderson’s relish before, I’m assuming you can’t just buy 1 tbsp of it) they’re not bad value, in my opinion.

For more information on Gousto’s recipe boxes, visit the Gousto website.

Gousto provided me with a recipe box to review. All opinions are my own.

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Vegan Omelette with Silken Tofu Recipe

Vegan omelette with silken tofu

Home alone means YAY I GET TO BE REALLY VEGAN and by ‘really vegan’ I mean I get to try things I haven’t made before like a vegan omelette made with silken tofu, such as this one I based on the one at the brilliant Post Punk Kitchen.

Vegan omelette batter made with silken tofu

Vegan omelette made with silken tofu

This vegan omelette was so good. It was quick and easy and although you’re not going to fool egg-eaters with it, this soft, tasty omelette was lovely stuffed with mushrooms, spring onions and spinach, and as the batter made enough for four omelettes and will keep well in the fridge or freezer, I had one cold the next day for lunch, used as a wrap with pesto, spinach, tomato and cucumber.

Vegan omelette wrap

Like a lot of vegan ‘eggy’ dishes, this silken tofu omelette contained black salt (or kala namak as it’s also known) to give it an eggy taste. Black salt is cheap on Amazon but you can leave it out if you’re not that bothered about an eggy flavour.

vegan-silken-tofu-omelette

Vegan Omelette with Silken Tofu Recipe
Cuisine: Vegan
Author: Cathy @ Planet Veggie
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 349g pack silken tofu
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp fine black salt
  • 1/2 cup chickpea flour
  • 1 tbsp potato starch
Instructions
  1. Prepare your chosen fillings before you start making the omelette and leave to one side
  2. Blend the garlic, tofu, nutritional yeast, olive oil, turmeric and black salt until smooth
  3. Add the chickpea flour and potato starch and blend until it’s all combined
  4. Heat a lightly oiled large frying pan and pour in 1/2 cup of the batter
  5. Use the back of a spoon to spread the batter out to make a thin circle
  6. Let it cook for about 3-5 minutes, until lightly browned on the bottom
  7. Flip the omelette over and cook for another minute or so
  8. Spread your prepared fillings evenly over half the omelette and fold over the other side
  9. Repeat with the rest of the batter

 




 

 

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Vegan Haggis Stuffed Pepper Recipe

vegan haggis stuffed pepper
Veganuary Day 19

I’ve been slacking off my breakfast Nutriblasts recently and the 19th of Veganuary was no exception. A side effect of slacking off breakfast means hunger kicks in mid-morning and today when the munchies kicked in, my healthy choices got pushed aside in favour of the vegan cake that’s on the kitchen worktop.

Even I don’t have cake for lunch though, which was a Warburtons Thin filled with spinach, cucumber, olives, tomatoes and sundried tomato paste.

Warburtons Thin vegan sandwich

Vegan Haggis Stuffed Pepper Recipe

For dinner, I made a vegan haggis stuffed red pepper. I’ve made these a couple of times before, although I can’t find any blog posts about them so the photos must have been bad – even for me.

vegan haggis stuffed pepper

I mixed the vegan haggis up with mushrooms and spinach but you can use whatever you fancy, e.g. leeks, tomatoes, onions, etc. I don’t add any spices or seasonings to Macsween’s haggis, as it’s tasty enough on its own.

I’ve seen on various vegan and vegetarian Facebook groups people saying they’ve bought Macsween vegetarian haggis in Sainsbury’s and Tesco. I haven’t seen it in either of those two supermarkets but I did find some before Christmas in Waitrose (it was by the cheese for some reason). My Facebook friend Cath tried making her own from this recipe in the Guardian but she said it was ‘horrible’, ‘impossible to eat’ and ‘cost me more in ingredients than if I’d just bought a Macsween veg haggis’.

Vegan Haggis Stuffed Pepper
Cuisine: Vegan
Author: Cathy @ Planet Veggie
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • Olive oil spray
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 250g [url href=”http://www.macsween.co.uk/products/delicious-every-day-vegetarian/” target=”_blank”]Macsween vegetarian haggis[/url], chopped
  • 50g mushrooms, chopped
  • 2 red peppers, destalked and deseeded
  • 2 large handfuls of spinach
Instructions
  1. Lightly spray the peppers with the olive oil spray and put in an ovenproof dish and bake for about 20 minutes at 180C
  2. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a frying pan and fry the mushrooms for about 2 minutes
  3. Add the vegetarian haggis and fry for another 3 minutes
  4. Add the spinach and stir until wilted
  5. Stuff the peppers with the haggis/mushroom/spinach mixture and return to the oven, covered, for 20 minutes, uncovering for the last 10

 

Veganuary Day 20

As I was off on a walk this morning and there are rarely toilets at the start of the walks I go on, I didn’t want to fill myself full of liquid, so I didn’t have any breakfast (yes, I know there are other things than smoothies/Nutriblasts to have for breakfast but I can’t face solid food first thing). As it turned out, there were toilets at the start of the walk so I could have had a Nutriblast before leaving the house but I’d brought two Tribe Bars with me and had one of those on my arrival (I’d cycled 4.5 miles and been in a car for 35 minutes by then, so I was up to eating something).

After the 6.5 mile walk round Shorne Wood Country Park, a friend and I went into the cafe for a drink and something to eat.  I studied the menu and wondered if the veggie sausages were vegan, before deciding I wasn’t hungry enough for a sausage sandwich anyway and diverting my attention to the flapjacky type things on the counter. As I picked up each one and studied the labels for dairy and eggs, I had an insight to how vegans must feel each time they go out to eat. I settled for an apple crumble slice type thing which stated clearly it was dairy-free and I couldn’t see eggs on the label (unlike on the other products they sold) and couldn’t think of anything else I should be looking out for and asked the girl at the counter if she had any soya milk. She didn’t, so I had to go without hot chocolate and have a fruit tea instead. What do hot chocolate drinking vegans do? Take a flask of vegan hot chocolate with them everywhere they go? I don’t drink tea or coffee. I drink hot chocolate. The cranberry and raspberry tea I had was very nice but I WANT HOT CHOCOLATE, DAMMIT.

Still, I never run out of hot chocolate at home (although since doing Veganuary, I’m buying about ten times the amount of soya milk I used to as the instant hot chocolate powder I usually use contains milk) and that’s what I had when I got in, along with the last of my vegan cake (Jacqui, if you’re reading this – thank you again for sending me the gorgeous vegan cake).

Fry’s Meat Free Crispy Prawns

I had planned to make a vegan aubergine and chickpea pasta dish for dinner but I was feeling lazy after the walk so I heated up the Fry’s Vegan Prawns I’d bought from Holland & Barrett a couple of weeks ago.

Frys crispy vegan prawns
Frys crispy vegan prawns

Part of me had wanted to try these meat free crispy prawns for ages, especially since Linda McCartney stopped making their fish-free prawns and scampi (sob) but, because 99% of the times I’d seen them mentioned on Facebook groups, people had said they’re more like chicken and nothing like prawns, the other part of me didn’t want to try them a) because they’re not cheap (they’re £3.99 in Holland & Barrett) and b) that’s a lot of money to pay just to be disappointed.

Now I’ve tried them I can tell you that no, they’re nothing like prawns and are definitely more chicken-like in texture but there is a slight prawn-like taste so, to put it succinctly – they’re like a prawny-tasting chicken. I’m not disappointed with them and if they were cheaper, I’d buy them. I certainly wouldn’t pay £3.99 for them but if you’ve got a money-off voucher for them like I did, they’re worth trying.

If you haven’t got a Holland & Barrett loyalty card, they’re worth getting. I thought I didn’t go into H&B very often but I keep getting discount vouchers sent to me, so I must spend more in there than I thought I did.

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Veganuary: Vegan Leek, Mushroom and Spinach Tart

Vegan leek, mushroom and spinach tart

Hallelujah – I cooked something that wasn’t stodge! This vegan leek, mushroom and spinach tart is something I’ve cooked before, at least a variation of, anyway. Usually when I make it, I cover it in cheese, like I’ve done previously on my leek, mushroom and goat’s cheese tart, mushroom, leek and mozzarella tart, and my courgette and tomato tart.

I’ve got to admit, I had a bit of a pang when I took both mine and The Meat Eater’s tarts out of the oven, and The Meat Eater’s was covered in bubbling, oozing Cheddar but the pang faded as soon as I started eating.

This vegan tart is a great way to use up any vegetables you have in the fridge – you can substitute the leeks, mushrooms and spinach for whatever you have to hand.

Vegan Leek, Mushroom and Spinach Tart
Recipe Type: Pastry
Cuisine: Vegan
Author: Cathy @ Planet Veggie
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • Two-thirds of a 375g pack of vegan ready-rolled puff pastry
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary
  • 2 leeks, sliced
  • 125g mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 large handfuls of spinach
  • salt and pepper
Instructions
  1. Heat the olive oil in a pan and fry the leeks for about 3 minutes
  2. Add the mushrooms, garlic and rosemary and fry for another 3 minutes
  3. Add the spinach and stir until wilted
  4. Season with salt and pepper
  5. Cut the pastry in half so you have two rectangles
  6. Score a 1cm border round each rectangle of pastry and top with the leek mixture, keeping within the border
  7. Bake in the oven at 180C for about 15 minutes

 

Veganuary Day 12 – Lunch

Warburtons Thin salad sandwich

Yesterday’s lunch was a Warburton’s Thin with spinach, cucumber, olives, tomatoes, hummus and vegan mayo. Do you like my new plate? I got it in Tesco for £3. It’s almost as nice as the penguin slippers I also bought (£6).

penguin slippers
Gratuitous pic of penguin slippers




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One Week Into Veganuary!

Vegan stir-fry with spring rolls and wontons

Veganuary banner

I’m a week into my first Veganuary, so how do I feel? Have I missed eggs and dairy? Have I lost any weight? The answers to these questions are:

  • no different;
  • no;
  • and no.

Was I expecting to feel any different or to miss eggs and dairy or to lose weight? The answers to these questions are:

  • maybe;
  • maybe; and
  • hell, yeah.

In relation to the ‘hell, yeah’, with regard to my weight – I wasn’t expecting a vegan diet to help me lose weight, especially when my diet over the last week has consisted of tacos, pizza, pie and mash, potato wedges, Oreos, Oat Flips, crisps and chocolate but, considering I haven’t had any alcohol this year yet and it’s Janathon, I thought I might have lost a pound or so but, alas, I started January weighing 10st 4¼ and that’s exactly what I weighed this morning.

I can honestly say I haven’t missed eggs or dairy (I don’t consume much of either anyway), but as I mentioned in yesterday’s post, I haven’t got any plans to eat out and that’s when I’ll struggle, especially if I’m out with a group I go walking with as it’s rare enough finding something vegetarian on the menu in the pubs we go to after – if I asked for something vegan, the owners would probably kick me out the door and bolt it behind me.

The only difference having a vegan diet has made to a normal week is checking labels for milk and eggs, and remembering not to buy any Quorn products (yes, I know there are a couple of vegan Quorn products in the UK now, but I haven’t found them yet). There’s been no hunger, disruption, inconvenience or side effects – all is good!

So, here’s what I ate on Veganuary Day 7:

Breakfast

Spinach, clementine, apple and coconut water Nutriblast
Spinach, clementine, apple and coconut water Nutriblast

Yep, my usual Nutriblast. I’ve taken to drinking my morning blasts in the front room, reading my Kindle, with my cat on my lap. Not a bad start to the day.

Lunch

Vegan salad sandwich in a Warburtons Thin
Salad sandwich in a Warburtons Thin

I couldn’t decide what to have for lunch. I didn’t fancy a Nutriblast and I was saving the tofu for a stir-fry, so I ended up having a salad sandwich containing spinach, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, red pepper, olives and home made hummus in a Warburtons Sandwich Thin (please forgive the nasty 70s-inspired photo).

Dinner

Vegan stir-fry with spring rolls and wontons
Vegan stir-fry with spring rolls and wontons

Despite saving the tofu for the stir-fry, I got caught up writing yesterday’s post, so The Meat Eater said he’d cook dinner but didn’t know what to do with the tofu, so that got left out. Still, this stir-fry with mushrooms, mange tout, baby sweetcorn, red peppers and beansprouts was seriously filling. The vegetables were fried in peanut oil for a few minutes, then two sachets of Blue Dragon Spicy Szechuan Tomato Stir-Fry Sauce was added. Accompanying the stir-fry were rice noodles – instead of the usual egg ones I buy – and Tesco Mini Vegetable Spring Rolls and Tesco Sweet & Sour Vegetable Wontons (and I wonder why I don’t lose weight).

Snacks

Vegan hot chocolate and Oreos
Vegan hot chocolate and Oreos

After falling over on the way to the gym, I went home and sulked and drank hot chocolate and ate Oreos (okay, so *this* is why I don’t lose any weight).

So, that’s week one of Veganuary done – if you’re also taking part, please leave me a comment and let me know how you’re getting on – I’d love to hear from you.

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Veganuary 2016 – Day 6

Veganuary banner

Veganuary Day 6 and I haven’t leapt face-first with my mouth open into the cheese counter at Tesco because of any overwhelming cheese-addiction withdrawal pangs – hurrah! Not that I was expecting to; although, seeing as I’ve used Violife vegan cheese three times already during Veganuary, you’d be forgiven for thinking I’ve got a bit of a thing about cheese.

Where I would find cheese tempting, however, is in restaurants but, as old Billy-no-mates me hasn’t got any nights out planned for January, temptation shouldn’t get in my way. I did, however, meet a friend at lunchtime yesterday in Wetherspoons and checked the menu beforehand, in case we were going to eat. Do you know what one of the first things on the Wetherspoons menu is? It’s halloumi. Yeah, halloumi. You know, halloumi – one of my most favourite food things ever. So, I thought I might get some chips (even though I read here yesterday that the chips in Wetherspoons are barely vegetarian as, even though some of the branches cook the chips separately to meat, the oil is all filtered together at the end of the day, so there’s always going to be a problem with cross-contamination) but the 955 calories put me off. I’m not a calorie-dodger on the whole but 955 CALORIES IN ONE PORTION OF CHIPS? Jeez.

Calories in a bowl of chips from Wetherspoons
Calories in chips from Wetherspoons

You can filter the menu on the Wetherspoons website to show only vegan menu items. There aren’t many, I can tell you. If you filter down the burger category, you’re offered the avocado topping and BBQ sauce – that’s just the avocado topping and BBQ sauce, not the burger. Woo.

Still, it wasn’t really relevant to my particular circumstances at the time, as I didn’t think we were going to eat but I just wanted to have a nose anyway, out of interest. What I did want was some hot chocolate and although when I filtered out hot drinks containing milk on the website, hot chocolate was left, I was sceptical and thought I’d be brave and ask when I got there.

It may not sound like a big deal to you, asking the bar staff if something’s vegan but, although I’ve been vegetarian for 24 years and have no problem asking if something is vegetarian, I’ve always felt shy/embarrassed about asking if something’s vegan. I don’t know exactly why this is – maybe it’s because I’m not a vegan and feel like I shouldn’t be asking if something’s vegan, or maybe I’m just too timid. Anyway, I was brave and asked the barman if the hot chocolate contained milk and he said yes, it did. Bah. Still, the pint of lime and soda I bought instead was a lot cheaper at just 80p.

Anyway, back to my food diary and, for breakfast, I had a – yes, you guessed it – a Nutriblast. This morning’s one was my usual spinach, clementine, apple, chia seeds and coconut water. You’re only getting a bog-standard photo today though, not a pretty one, sorry. I gave my inner David Bailey (or should that be Lebovitz?) the day off.

Spinach, clementine, apple and coconut water Nutriblast
Spinach, clementine, apple and coconut water Nutriblast

As mentioned above, lunch was two pints of lime and soda in Wetherspoons, then I came home and had hot chocolate and an Oat Flip. Oats are healthy, yeah?

Green & Black's hot chocolate and an Oat Flip
My healthy lunch

For dinner we had tacos. Tacos are my new favourite thing (after halloumi, obvs), ever since Old El Paso sent me their Stand ‘n’ Stuff Soft Taco Kit to review. On top of the tacos, I had some grated Violife and a couple of blobs of home-made vegan sour cream (for more information on the sour cream, see my first Veganuary post). I accompanied the tacos with home-made spicy potato wedges and steamed broccoli and green beans. I’ll share the recipes for the tacos and home-made wedges with you below.

Vegan tacos with home-made spicy wedges
Vegan tacos with home-made spicy wedges
Vegan Tacos
Recipe Type: Mexican
Cuisine: Vegan
Author: Cathy @ Planet Veggie
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 2
Please note this is a rough indication of the ingredients – I didn’t actually measure anything, so go by your own instincts.
Ingredients
  • 4 Old El Paso Soft Stand ‘n’ Stuff Taco Shells (heated as per packet instructions)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 150g vegan mince (I used Tesco’s own meat-free mince)
  • 2 tbsp Old El Paso Taco Seasoning
  • 50ml water
  • 2 baby onions, sliced
Instructions
  1. Heat the oil in a frying pan, add the baby onions and fry for a few minutes until soft.
  2. Add the vegan mince and fry for about three to four minutes.
  3. Add the taco seasoning and water and bring to the boil.
  4. Simmer for about five minutes.
  5. Share the mince between the heated taco shells and top with jalapenos, salsa, salad, cheese and sour cream.
Vegan Spicy Potato Wedges
Recipe Type: Mexican
Cuisine: Vegan
Author: Cathy @ Planet Veggie
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 2
Please note the quantities for the ingredients are approximate – I made this up as I went along and didn’t measure anything.
Ingredients
  • 4 medium potatoes, cut into wedges
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • a few drops of liquid smoke
Instructions
  1. Cook the potato wedges in boiling water for about 5 minutes, then drain and put in a roasting tray.
  2. Mix together the other ingredients and pour over the potato wedges, turning to coat thoroughly.
  3. Bake in the oven at 200C, turning occasionally for approximately 45 minutes.

 

It’s not too late to take part in Veganuary – for more information and to sign up, visit the Veganuary website.

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My First Veganuary – Day 5

Spinach, apple, carrot, clementine, chia seeds, coconut water Nutriblast

Veganuary banner

Veganuary Day 5 started off with a Nutriblast as usual (for my review of my Nutribullet, go here) and today’s Nutriblast was a combination of spinach, apple, carrot, clementine, chia seeds and coconut water. I haven’t had a carrot in a Nutriblast before but I had half of one left over from Monday’s stew, so I chucked it in. I’ve said before, it doesn’t seem to matter what I chuck in my Nutribullet, it always turns out fine, unlike when you juice without a recipe to guide you and it turns out like swamp water (she says, immediately before posting a photo of something resembling swamp water).

Spinach, apple, carrot, clementine, chia seeds, coconut water Nutriblast
Spinach, apple, carrot, clementine, chia seeds and coconut water Nutriblast

Lunch 

Lunch was another Nutriblast but, unlike my breakfast ones which I make into more of a juice, I like my lunchtime Nutriblasts to be more substantial and to contain more protein, so I filled up the tall Nutribullet cup with spinach, banana, kiwi fruit, passion fruit, dates, cashews, cacao and topped it up with soya milk and water. This filled me up to the verge of needing an afternoon nap.

Deconstructed Nutriblast
Deconstructed Nutriblast

Dinner

Despite my Facebook friend Pete declaring a pie isn’t a pie unless it’s made of lard (forgive him, he’s northern), dinner was a Linda McCartney Country Pie, mashed potato (mine mashed with soya milk and Vitalite) and baked beans.

Linda McCartney Country Pie, mash and beans
Linda McCartney Country Pie, mash and beans

For a snack, I had hot chocolate and an Oat Flip (see yesterday’s post for hot chocolate and Oat Flip info and photo).

There’s nothing I’ve missed yet (what’s to miss when you can still eat pie and mash, huh?) and I definitely haven’t been hungry – I haven’t been snacking as much as I did before taking part in Veganuary and although I was having a couple of Oreos a day before January, a packet remains unopened in the kitchen (that’s probably because I’ve discovered how nice Oat Flips are).

Come back tomorrow to read about my bravery in Wetherspoons.

 

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Recipe: Vegan Chickpea (Gram) Flour Pancake

Chickpea flour (gram flour) pancake

Chickpea flour (also known as gram flour) is so versatile. It can be used instead of eggs in omelettes, pancakes, quiches and loads of other things. My latest favourite way to use it is to make pancakes – they’re just as quick and easy to make as their eggy equivalents, but with the added bonus of it being vegan and therefore cruelty-free (and wheat- and gluten-free if you need to avoid those). What I mostly love about pancakes though is that they’re just a pancake-based pizza – choose your toppings just as you would a pizza and throw them on the top of the pancake at the end of cooking.

In the photo is a chickpea flour pancake I made the other day with spinach, mushrooms, olives, sundried tomatoes, garlic and pine nuts.

You should be able to find chickpea flour in your local supermarket (just bear in mind it might say gram flour on the packet) but if not, then any Indian/international store should have it.

Chickpea (Gram) Flour Pancake
Recipe Type: Pancake
Cuisine: Vegan
Author: Cathy @ Planet Veggie
Ingredients
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ cup chickpea (gram) flour
  • ¼ tsp baking powder
  • ½ cup + 2 tbsp water
  • salt and pepper
  • Your choice of toppings
Instructions
  1. Prepare your toppings (e.g. fry your mushrooms, spinach and garlic) and set aside.
  2. Whisk together the chickpea flour, baking powder and water, then season with salt and pepper. Whisk until no lumps remain.
  3. Heat the oil in a large frying pan and pour in the pancake batter.
  4. Cook for a couple of minutes until the pancake feels firm enough to flip over.
  5. Carefully flip the pancake over, scatter your toppings on top of the pancake and cook for another couple of minutes.

 

If you’re interested in cooking with chickpea flour, here are a couple of recipes from other food bloggers you might like:

Coconut Chickpea Chocolate Cake from Tin and Thyme
Quick Indian Pancakes with Spiced Potato Filling from The Veg Space

And for those of you who don’t need a vegan/gluten-free pancake, here’s a recipe for a more traditional pancake (i.e. one that’s made with eggs and dairy milk).




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Recipe: Smoothies Containing Blueberries

I generally don’t plan what goes into my smoothies – as I mentioned in my Nutribullet review the other day, it doesn’t seem to matter what combination of fruit you add, it always turns out delicious.

These two smoothies were no exception – I randomly chucked in whatever fruit I could find in the fridge and freezer and out of the Nutribullet came fresh, creamy smoothies. You can see what they were made with in the captions.

Spinach, clementine, raspberry, blueberry, chia seeds and Alpro coconut drink Nutriblast
Spinach, clementine, raspberry, blueberry, chia seeds and Alpro coconut drink
Spinach, blueberry, frozen summer fruit, Alpro coconut drink Nutriblast
Spinach, blueberry, frozen summer fruit, Alpro coconut drink
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Recipe: Smoky Marinated Tofu in Pitta Bread

Tofu marinated in sesame oil, sriracha, liquid smoke and nutritional yeast

I hadn’t had tofu for ages, so it was time to remedy that and raid the cupboard and fridge for condiments and drag the George Foreman out of the cupboard.

The result was cripsy, smoky, spicy tofu that I stuffed in a Food Doctor seeded pitta bread (only £1 for 6 in Tesco) with spinach, olives and mayo.

Recipe: Marinated Tofu in Pitta Bread
Cuisine: Vegan
Author: Cathy @ Planet Veggie
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 1
Ingredients
  • 1/2 block tofu, pressed and sliced in half
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbsp sriracha
  • A few drops liquid smoke
Instructions
  1. Mix up the sesame oil, nutritional yeast, sriracha and liquid smoke and coat the tofu in it, rubbing it in with your hands
  2. Leave to marinate for a few hours (or minutes, depending on how organised you are in planning ahead)
  3. Grill on a George Foreman grill for 10-15 minutes, until crispy
  4. Stuff in pitta bread with salad

 

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