Best-Ever Potato Salad (with Saffron Garlic Aioli)

This is an extra-ordinarily big call to make but believe me when I say this is one potato salad you won’t forget in a long time! I made both the non-vegan and vegan version for Christmas and can confirm that both are rather sensational.

Ingredients 

  • 1 medium sweet potato, washed well (+/- peeled, up to you!)
  • 4 Kippfler potatoes, washed well (+/- peeled, up to you!)
  • 1 leek, green portion removed and finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup garlic aioli (or vegan mayonnaise with 1 clove garlic)
  • Small pinch of saffron threads
  • 1/2 tbsp chopped fresh chives

Method

  1. Prick the Kippfler potatoes. Chop the sweet potato into chunks.
  2. Bring a saucepan of water to the boil and boil the Kippfler potatoes until soft. Remove and do the same with the sweet potato.
  3. Heat a frypan over medium heat. Add a small amount of olive oil and fry the leeks until soft.
  4. Allow the saffron threads to steep in 1 tbsp water until yellow in colour.
  5. Mix the aioli with the saffron mixture and chives until well combined, then toss through the leek and potatoes. Return to the fridge to chill until serving.
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Honey I Stuffed the Pumpkin

While we’re all getting into the full swing of our New Year resolutions, I thought I’d share a few of my recipes from the festive season – starting with this stuffed pumpkin.

I’ve seen many variations of this concept over the past few weeks, and mine is nothing fancy. But it was super easy and vegan / gluten friendly too!

Ingredients

  • 1 large butternut pumpkin, halved
  • 1 cup black rice
  • 200g vegan cheese (I used a vegan version of Persian fetta)
  • 1 tbsp each of sunflower seeds, cranberries, pepitas
  • 1/2 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 2 tbsp lemon infused olive oil

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200*C.
  2. Place the pumpkin halves cut side up on a baking tray. Remove the seeds and bake until soft enough to scoop out a portion of the flesh in the middle (about 30 minutes).
  3. Cook the rice as per the instructions (or you can cheat by using a supermarket microwave version). Mix the rice with the seeds and olive oil until well combined.
  4. Scoop out a small portion of the pumpkin flesh. Fill the hole with the rice mixture, then top with the vegan cheese and bake until the pumpkin is soft (another 15 minutes should do).
  5. Serve hot, or portions can be stored in an airtight container in the freezer for 1 month. Enjoy!

Nutty Carob Granola

Nutty, chocolately granola without the hidden sugar!

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup buckwheat groats
  • 1/4 cup oats
  • 1/2 cup quinoa flakes
  • 1/4 cup flaked almonds
  • handful each of hazelnuts, cashews, walnuts and flaked coconut
  • 2 tbsp carob
  • 2 tbsp cacao
  • 3 tbsp olive oil Nuttalex, melted

If you prefer your granola sweeter, add 1-2 tbsp maple syrup.

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180*C and line a baking tray with baking paper.
  2. Mix all of the ingredients together and spread onto the baking tray.
  3. Bake until crispy (~ 15-20 minutes), using a fork to turn the mixture every 5 minutes.

Roasted Cauli Salad with Tahini Turmeric Sauce

Another easy meal-prep option that’s vegan and gluten friendly, packed full of nutrition with a hint of spice!

Ingredients (serves 4) 

  • 1 small cauliflower
  • 1 large eggplant
  • 200g pumpkin
  • 4 large kale leaves, washed and de-veined, then finely chopped
  • 1/8 cup cranberries
  • 1/8 cup flaked almonds
  • 1/2 cup plain coconut yogurt (can use plain Greek instead)
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • 2 tsp turmeric

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180*C and line a tray with baking paper.
  2. Wash and chop the cauliflower, eggplant and pumpkin into similar sized pieces. Roast the cauliflower and eggplant on the same tray until slightly charred around the edges (about 40 minutes), and roast the pumpkin until soft and golden (about 30-40 minutes).
  3. Make the yogurt sauce by mixing the yogurt, tahini and turmeric until well combined.
  4. To assemble the salad, place the kale on the bottom, then top with the vegetables, then add the yogurt sauce, and sprinkle the almonds and cranberries on top.

Easy Lemon Beetroot Hummus

I’m of Lebanese heritage on Mum’s side, so hummus is in my blood. Some would say there is too much blood in my hummus stream even. But as much as I love the traditional recipes, I also love to experiment – and this tangy pretty-in-pink version is a great example of how to make better-than-store-bought hummus without the fuss!

Ingredients 

  • 1 x 400g can chickpeas (drained and rinsed)
  • 1 x 200g can beetroot (drained and rinsed)
  • 3 tbsp lemon infused olive oil (or you can use normal olive oil and add lemon zest to taste)
  • 2 tbsp unhulled tahini
  • pinch of sea salt to taste

Method 

  1. Place the chickpeas, beetroot and tahini in the food processor and blend until starting to combine.
  2. While processing, slowly add the olive oil until the mixture is smooth and creamy, and add the sea salt to taste. Refrigerate before serving to allow the mixture to firm, then serve with your favourite crackers or vegetable sticks.

Pumpkin Spiced Porridge

It’s only cold here for about 3 months of the year, which means there are 12 weeks of prime-pumpkin-porridge-tasting time to be enjoyed!

Ingredients (serves 2) 

  • 200g butternut pumpkin
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 cup quinoa flakes
  • pinch of pumpkin spice (I use 1 tsp cinnamon with 1 tsp cardamom, 1/4 tsp allspice, 1/4 tsp ground ginger and 1/4 tsp ground cloves)
  • coconut or Greek yogurt and flaked almonds to serve

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200*C. Skin and chop the pumpkin into small pieces and roast until soft and golden (approx 20-30 minutes).
  2. Place the pumpkin, spices and almond milk in a blender and process until smooth.
  3. Use the ‘pumpkin smoothie’ as a base to cook the quinoa flakes, on a saucepan over medium heat. Stir continuously (particularly the bottom so it doesn’t stick) until the flakes are soft and the mixture is thick and creamy. If you need to add more liquid, add more almond milk as you go.
  4. Top with yogurt and flaked almonds just before serving.

Tip: The most time-consuming part is roasting the pumpkin. So, roast a large pumpkin early in the week so that there’s plenty on hand to make porridge whenever you fancy!

Salted Caramel Protein Balls

Warning, these little mouthfuls of bliss are slightly addictive! Perfect for curbing those afternoon cravings with a healthy mixture of protein, carbs and good fats.

Ingredients (makes 8 large or 12 small) 

  • 1 small banana
  • 4 dates
  • 1 tbsp tahini
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 40g of Botanika Blends salted caramel pea protein (OR use vanilla pea / whey protein and add 1/2 tsp salted caramel essence, found in the baking isle of the supermarket)
  • 1 tbsp carob powder (can use cacao or cocoa instead but carob is naturally sweeter in flavour)
  • 3/4 cup granola of your choice

Method

  1. Process the banana, dates, tahini, oil, pea protein and carob powder in a food processor until smooth
  2. Stir in the granola until well combined, then roll into balls and set in the fridge.

Note you will find it much easier to roll the balls if your hands are wet. 

Vegan Mushroom and Cauliflower Soup

Soup-er easy, nourishing, heart-warming and vegan – it’s just like a big hug in a bowl!

Ingredients (serves 4) 

  • 250g mushroom cups
  • 1 small whole cauliflower
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 litre stock of your choice (vegetable if you’re vegan, chicken if you’re not)
  • 150g shimeji or enoki mushrooms
  • brown rice to serve

Method 

  1. Preheat the oven to 200*C. Chop the cauliflower and the mushroom cups into small pieces of roughly equal sizes. Leave the shimeji mushrooms whole. Spray the vegetables with olive oil, and roast on a lined baking tray until the mushrooms are squishy and the cauliflower is browning / crispy around the edges (approximately 15-20 minutes).
  2. Cook the brown rice as per directions on the packet.
  3. Place the roasted mushroom cup pieces, cauliflower, garlic and stock in the blender, and blend until smooth. Top with the brown rice and shimeji mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Healthy Vegan Chocolate Mousse

Plant-based, high protein, dairy-free, gluten-friendly and low refined sugar – what’s not to love about this variation on chocolate mousse?!

Ingredients (serves 2) 

Method

  1. Blend all the ingredients in a food processor until smooth.
  2. Refrigerate until set (approximately 1 hour). Top with cacao nibs. Enjoy!