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Tofu & Kale Lasagna

  • Jun. 12th, 2011 at 6:38 PM
We get an organic fruit and veg box every fortnight and have been doing our best to use all the bits within.  Sometimes you get left with a few odds at the bottom of the crisper.  This was that occasion, made good.

Recipe could easily be veganised by leaving out the pecorino and ensuring you use vegan pasta.

Tofu and Kale Lasagna

1 block tofu (500gm) - drained
1/2 bunch kale (you could use chard [silverbeet], spinach or any other leavy green really - I like kale!) - washed and sliced thinly
1 leek - chopped
a few garlic cloves - crushed/sliced
1/2 preserved lemon - skin washed and chopped
A few spoons Tofutti (vegan) sour cream (or sour cream or quark or water)
Lasagna sheets
1 Jar tomato passata
A handful of cashew - soaked in water for 30mins- a few hours)

Gently cook garlic and leeks in a small frying pan or sauce pan.

Meanwhile, crumble tofu into a large bowl, add washed and chopped preserved lemon rind, washed and chopped kale and a few spoons (desert) of your sour cream substitute.

Add the leek and garlic mix to the bowl and stir to combine.

Get our your lasagna dish, pour a layer of passata over the bottom, add a layer of pasta sheets, top with your tofu mix (I found this easiest to do by hand) smooth, top with sauce and repeat.

I added a top layer of pasta on this where I usually wouldn't then passata then grated pecorino (a sheeps milk parmesan type cheese) then roughly chopped soaked cashews. If you use this top layer of pasta I advise covering the dish for the majority of the cooking time then removing the cover to allow it to brown towards the end, this will ensure that the top layer of pasta cooks evenly (unlike mine where I reversed this covering process!)

Cook as per your pasta sheet instructions (generally 30-45mins for "instant" lasagna sheets).

Serve and enjoy!

 

Jerusalem Artichokes

  • Aug. 21st, 2010 at 4:54 PM
We've been happily getting all our fresh produce from our CERES food connect box.  This last box had three Jerusalem Artichokes in it, and while I've always been fascinated with them I've never actually used them.  But who can resist a tuber that's related to the sunflower!

Anyway, the following is currently in progress in the kitchen and smells amazing - I'll update with eat-ability later:

Artichoke and Mushroom Pie, serves 4-6

2 onions
a thick slice butter(EDIT: Nuttalex)
olive oil
2 stalks celery
400g Jerusalem artichokes (EDIT: + 1 large carrot as I had less JA's than this)
5 large field mushrooms (EDIT: Button mushrooms x 10)
4 tomatoes (EDIT: Tinned chopped tom's as out of season!)
4 tbsp dry Masala (EDIT: Masala has been packed, used dry sherry)
2 tbsp flour
600 ml stock
2 bay leaves, a few sprigs thyme (EDIT: Used some rosemary)
600g potatoes
butter for baking

1. Peel the onions; finely chop; cook over low heat in some butter and oil for approx 20mins - until soft.

2. Slice celery thinly; peel artichokes and cut into bite-sized pieces; stir into the onions.  (EDIT: Do artichokes last as they oxidize, or cut and place into a bowl of lemon water.)

3. Cut the mushrooms into chunks; add to pan until they have softened; chop the tomatoes; add to pan.

4. Add the marsala; cook briefly then add the flour; leave to sizzle for a bit so the flour cooks thoroughly, then add the stock. Stir to a rich thick stock (EDIT: I interpreted this as cook down to a rich thick stock, which it does really nicely). Season well. Add the herbs.

5. Meanwhile, peel the potatoes (EDIT: or be lazy and wash them and make a champ style mash), slice; boil until tender; drain, then place on top of the filling in a single layer; dot with butter; bake for 25-30 mins at 200C.

From Nigel Slater in the Observer 28 November 2004

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Aug. 9th, 2010

  • 4:48 PM
People who read my LJ, please excuse the double posting - but this community hasn't been used enough recently.

Today's mystery ingredient was pumpkin!

My kidsister brought over some random ingredients and demanded I cook her lunch Masterchef style. I really didn't have much in the fridge so my options were rather limited.

We made a pumpin quiche. I'd never made quiche before, so it was something of a challenge. But for a first attempt it turned out rather well.

Ingredients
Pumpkin (diced)
3 Eggs
1 sheet of frozen short crust pastry
4 spring onions (leeks would have also worked well)
2 cloves of garlic
butter
spoon of Philadelphia cream cheese (feta would have also worked well)
fresh chives, parsley, pepper and paprika

I lined the pie tin with shortcrust pastry and cooked the pastry first - with the baking paper and marbles trick. Nothing is worse than soggy pastry.
I cooked the pumpkin, then sauted the spring onion, garlic and pumpkin in butter til the pumpkin caramelised slightly. I also forgot to add in the baby spinach which was the other ingredient from Lee, but it tasted fine without it :) I mixed through the cream cheese (not very much).
I whipped up the eggs with fresh herbs, pepper and paprika. Then poured the pumpkin mix and the egg mix into the baked pie crust and put it in the oven for about 20mins until the egg was firm.

This made a really yummy pie. My sister is a rather fussy eater and turned up her nose during most of this process - but then went back for 2 more helpings of pie :)

Apple and Tequila Salad.

  • Nov. 11th, 2009 at 10:22 AM
So, its hot in Melbourne and its ages since we've had a theme, so I hereby announce salad week and ask everyone to post their favourite salad recipes!

We invented this salad last night in a one of those what do we have in the cupboard/garden/fruit bowl moments.

Apple and Tequila Salad

Diced Apple, don't peel it (I used a red delicious and a green apple, so nice colour contrast)
Diced Kiwifruit
Fresh chopped chives
Fresh chopped mint
Juice one orange
squeeze of lime juice
splash of tequila

Chop all the ingredients into a bowl. Squeeze the liquid over the bowl. Fridge for about 15minutes so it tastes crisp and not room temperature. This might not be a problem if unlike me you keep all your ingredients in the fridge to begin with, we were raiding the veg garden and fruit bowl. Don't flood the bowl with juice, think of it like salad dressing, you just want to coat stuff and you may have to tweak quantities to get the taste right. After serving the salad, I may have drank the remaining dressing out of the bowl :) Mmm... orange, lime and tequila shot!

Nommy Mushroom Risotto

  • Sep. 14th, 2009 at 1:17 PM
We made this last night and it was very yummy. You can use any kind of mushrooms, we used swiss, shitaki, oyster and enoki, but really as long as you have one strongly flavoured mushroom variety, its a win. The secret ingredient really is the balsamic vinegar.

Wild Mushroom Risotto

Ingredients
1 cup Arborio Rice
6 cups Stock
1 Onion (Diced)
Garlic
Fresh herbs (we used parsley and chives because that is what our garden had, but I think thyme would be best)
A mix of different mushroom types (or just one if so inclined, but variety is better
Pepper
Mushroom soy
Balsamic vinegar
Oil
Butter
Parmesan cheese
Dry white wine

In a heavy based saucepan fry up half the garlic and onion in some butter and olive oil. Cook the mushrooms, take note that some mushrooms take longer to cook that others, so add them accordingly as you don't want some of your shrooms to be over-cooked. Add a splash of white wine as liquid. Add herbs, salt and pepper to taste, rather than adding salt, we added a small splash of dark mushroom soy sauce.

Once the shrooms are cooked, remove them from the pan with a slotted spoon and store them in a bowl. Leave the mushroom cooking liquid in the pan. Add the rest of the onion, garlic, more oil and butter and cook them, once the onion is transparent, add the rice and stir for about two minutes until the rice is coated and changes colour. Then gradually add the stock, a bit at a time, as the rice soaks it up. This process takes about 20minutes and you should be stirring pretty regularly, regular stirring makes your rice fluffy, not soggy. Rice should be al-dente. Add half a cup of wine and let it absorb, add the parmasan cheese and stir through until it melts, add the rest of the mushrooms and herbs. Pepper to taste. Stir through another knob of butter so the risotto is all shiny and serve with a little more cheese and herbs for garnish. Drizzle a light swirl of balsamic vinegar over the dish.

Drink the rest of the wine while you eat your nommy risotto. You should never cook with wine you are not willing to drink.

Confessions of a Vegan Cake Eater

  • Aug. 12th, 2009 at 8:24 AM
Ok, ok so I may have been holding out on y'all, but but only this week, and only because, well this cake takes so little time, effort and stuff that once you've finished the first one you somehow find yourself back in the kitchen transforming it into muffins, or more cake or well - just chocolaty vegan goodness!

Super Easy Choc Vegan Cake (aka Chocolate Oil Cake)

Heat oven to 180C/350C

In a large bowl combine:

1 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups plain flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder/Bi Carb

Use a metal whisk or fork to stir these together.

In another bowl, or measuring jug combine:

1/2 cup oil (I've been using olive, but almost anything would work)
1 cup water (or coffee)
2 tsp vanilla essence (the real stuff yes please thanks)

Stir these together, poor onto dry ingredients and use your whisk to blend them all together. Then add:

2 tablespoons cider vinegar (although I'm sure you could use white/brown too)

Whisk a bit more - the cider wont totally blend into the mix, but you'll get this lovely satiny choc mix - yum!

Poor into a greased cake/muffin.loaf tin and bake about 40mins for cake - 25 for muffins.

Cake is cooked when a skewer/toothpick comes out clean.

My oven takes about 55 mins!

Eat and enjoy your cruelty free, super easy treat!

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Marco Polo: Italian meets Chinese Dessert

  • Jul. 3rd, 2009 at 8:56 PM
Coffee Mascarpone cake with lychees


Take one portion of coffee marscarpone cake (layers of sponge cake between coffee flavoured marscarpone cheese, sprinkled with cocoa on top) and a serve of lychees (opened from the can). Eat.


Noms!

Porridge with Apple and Maple Syrup

  • Apr. 30th, 2009 at 8:19 AM
It's officially cold - here in Australia anyway. So that means it's porridge and pie season.

So I give you quick, proper porridge.

Porridge with Apple and Maple Syrup

Serves 1 big fatty (double the quantities for 2 big fatties or more)

1 cup rolled oats
1/2 peeled grated apple
1 cup soy mile
1/4 cup water
slurp of maple syrup (or honey)

Mix oats, milk, water and apple in a small saucepan. Jump in shower/make coffee/check baby is still breathing - whatever. Let it sit for a couple of minutes if you can - if not it'll still be ok. Alternately if you are an organised fatty you can do this at night too.

Bring covered saucepan to boil, remove cover, turn heat down to a simmer and let it go for 5 minutes - stirring frequently (this is the secret to good porridge).

Pour into bowl, top with Maple Syrup and eat.

YUM.

Beetroot and Pumpkin Soup

  • Apr. 28th, 2008 at 8:50 PM
Otherwise known as what I had left in my fridge soup. So I looked in the fridge, I had a small wedge of pumpkin, a beetroot and few small potatos and a carrot, I looked dubious, that might make soup. I've made pumpkin soup before and I've make borscht before, but both use very different spicing, but what the heck I say, if it doesn't work I can order pizza :)

Catagory: soup

Ingredients
small wedge of pumpkin
1 large beetroot
1 carrot
smallish potato (i had five very small salad taters)
large onion
garlic
ginger
cumin
parprika
middle eastern spice mix
stock
butter
cream or sour cream

Obviously I was aiming to make a small pot of soup, that said I think I've still got dinner for the next 2 or 3 nights, either way, scale your ingredients accordingly, about equal amounts of beetroot and pumpkin and less carrot and potato.

Fry up your onion in butter, not oil, add garlic, ginger and spices, I was basically going for a vaguely middle eastern spice mix, but didn't add to much, you want the spice to be subtle, not overpowering the natural taste of the veg. Then I stirred through the rest of the roughly chopped veg until everything was coated in the butter, spice, onion mix.

Then I added enough stock to about the level of the vegs in my pot and brought to boil and continued to leave it bubbling for the next hour or so. I did add some extra stock when I thought it needed some, but really the amount of stock just determines how thick your soup is, I actually am not a fan of soup you can stand a spoon up in, which this would have been without extra stock.

Then blend the soup so its all smooth like, I like my barmix.

Serve the soup and swirl a dollop of cream or sour cream around for a nice pretty pattern, garnish with sprig of parsley.

This soup is a lovely luscious rich red colour, its nowhere as earthy tasting as borscht, rather it has a nice smooth flavour, combining the best elements of pumpkin and beetroot.

I really should post a photo, it looks so pretty.

Vegetarian Food Blog

  • Feb. 10th, 2009 at 11:49 AM
Hi everyone,
 I've been enjoying all of your recipes, and I thought I would share some of my own. I recently started a blog with recipes using fake meat in ways that it actually tastes good. The idea is to move beyond heating up a soy patty and eating it on a hamburger bun with ketchup. That's ok sometimes, but it definitely gets old.
I hope you enjoy!
www.violincyn.wordpress.com