Thursday 23 June 2011

Multi-Seeded Wholegrain Scones

Vegan Multi Seeded Wholegrain Scones

As much as I love my regular sweet scones, which we have for breakfast probably every other weekend, I just felt like trying a savoury scone. Opted for multigrain and seeded here and these turned out so well, gorgeous fresh from the oven or lightly toasted with lashings of vegan margarine, or with some peanut butter  :-) Also perfect with a bowl of soup. They are super hearty too, really quite filling and have great flavour. A great success, will definitely make these again!

Multi -Seeded Wholegrain Scones: makes 8

200g wholemeal flour
80g rye flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
80g cold vegetable fat (shortening)
100ml rice milk
100ml water
100g mixed seeds, I used a combo of pumpkin, flax, sesame and sunflower

Preheat the oven to 190C and line a baking sheet with baking paper. Mix all the dry ingredients except the seeds into a large bowl. Add the fat and cut it in with a pastry cutter until it is like fine crumb. Stir in the seeds. Mix the rice milk and water and pour over. Stir with a fork until a dough forms. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead a couple times then shape into a 1 1/2" high disc. Cut into 8 triangles, place on the baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes or until lightly golden.

Nutritional Information: per scone
Calories: 286
Fat: 16.4g
Sat Fat: 4.9g
Fibre: 6g
Protein: 7.2g
Carbs: 30.2g
Sugar: 0.7g
Calcium: 158.3mg (depending on brand of milk used, mine's fortified)

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Saturday 18 June 2011

Roasted Baby New Potato Salad with Shallots and Fresh Rosemary

Love this salad!! Yay for salad season!! Boo for not ironing my linen!! Anyway.... posting this I've realised I've not blogged my basic creamy potato salad yet. I'll post the recipe for that too here, no photo but essentially looks the same as the above but with spring onion :-) I love both versions, this one just a nice change from the norm, although I realise that roasting anything in the oven when it's salad weather might not be the best idea, this is worth it :-)

Roasted Baby New Potato Salad with Shallots and Fresh Rosemary:
Serves 4 as a side

500g baby new potatoes, srcubbed and dried
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/8 tsp salt
black pepper

100g vegan mayo, I use Plamil Organic
2 tsp white wine vinegar
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 large or 2 small shallots, about 20g finely chopped
1/4 tsp salt
black pepper
1 sprig fresh rosemary, leaves removed and finely chopped

Preheat the oven to 200C dice the potatoes and tip into a roasting tin. Toss in the oil and salt and pepper. Roast for about 30 - 40 minutes or until fork tender. Remove and stir often to prevent sticking and add more oil if they are sticking too much. Remove from the oven and set aside while you make the dressing.

For the dressing simply whisk everything together. Tip the warm potatoes into a large bowl and scrape over the dressing, toss well then refrigerate until cold.

My Basic Creamy Potato Salad:
500g new potatoes
100g vegan mayo
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 Tbsp white wine vinegar
2 spring onions, finely chopped - green parts too!
1/4 tsp salt
freshly ground black pepper

Scrub the potatoes then boil whole in salted water for about 20 minutes or until just fork tender. Drain and rinse under cold water then plunge into a bowl of ice water. Leave until they feel hand cool. Remove and pat dry. Dice the potatoes and place in a large bowl. If the skins are already falling off then I go ahead and peel them, if not, I leave them on.

For the dressing, simply whisk everything but the spring onion together. Scrape over the potatoes and fold in with a rubber spatula. Fold in the spring onions, then cover and chill in the fridge for at least a few hours. Once it is cool, check the seasoning and add more salt or pepper if needed.

I also realize that I said in my last post that I "wasn't some salad nut" - I'm starting to think that's not true....When my Mom and Aunt were here were through a little party together for my Mom's birthday, it wasn't until she got back to Canada but I wanted to celebrate it with her. The weather was nice so I thought I would make up almost every salad on the blog, plus I figured they would all be very omni-friendly ;-)

A guest digging in! (Click for more salad detail )

Well, it was a huge success, everyone loved it all - they all went back for seconds. In the picture there are:

Baby Spinach, Maple Candied Pecan and Strawberry Salad
Mediterranean Couscous with Almond Feta
Green Bean, Gnocchi and Mint
Soba Noodle, Black Sesame and Avocado 
German Potato Salad and
Italian Pasta  Salad (which is on my old blog)

As well as those we had vegan soda bread, vitalite, sourdough and a selection of wines. It was all beautiful, can't wait to make this spread again with the new salads - Cinnamon kissed Carrot and the Roasted Potato Salad :-)  Many thanks to my Auntie for taking a picture!!

Monday 13 June 2011

Cinnamon Kissed Carrot, Apple, Raisin and Pecan Salad with a Maple Lime Dressing

I promise this works! I've been rather oddly craving a carrot salad lately. Why I don't know, I'm not some salad nut and I'm not sure I've had many carrot salads before but there you go. I decided I wanted to go the sweet route here,  I usually don't go for sweet savoury things but it's damn good! Combining carrots with apple, raisins and pecans are pretty standard in a carrot salad but I wanted a different dressing, not something creamy as is traditional in carrot salads. I felt it needed something citrusy - the sharpness would help with all that sweetness and help stop the apple browning. I've always loved maple and lime together so that was that. Whipped up this dressing and OMG it is soooo good!! If the whole salad is sweetness overload for you I still recommend making that dressing for a regular leaf salad or something as it's seriously drinkable :-)

The addition of cinnamon was a whim of mine as it simply went with everything in this salad, only a tiny pinch is needed here, you don't want to overpower it all. The end result is like eating a fresh bowl of carrot cake batter - now that's a salad I can get into :-)

Cinnamon Kissed Carrot, Apple, Raisin and Pecan Salad with a Maple Lime Dressing:
Serves 2 as a main or 4 as a side:

175g carrot -about 2 medium-large
50-100g apple, peeled - about 1 large, any type, I used Fuji here
50g raisins
50g chopped pecans
1 Tbsp peanut oil
1 Tbsp fresh lime juice, sieve out the bits
1 Tbsp maple syrup
pinch salt
tiniest pinch of cinnamon

First make your dressing, add the oil to a small bowl then slowly pour in the lime juice, whisking well all the while until all emulsified and thick. Now whisk in the maple syrup, pinch of salt and the cinnamon. I measured the cinnamon by just using the very tip of a sharp knife - no more than that. Whisk together well.

For the salad, it's really easy and best to use a food processor here. I just fed the carrot and apple into it with my grater attatchment. Tip into a large bowl and add the raisins and pecans, toss well. Give the dressing another whisk then pour over the salad and toss well. Serve. Despite the apple in here this keeps well, my leftovers are still looking good - no browning! If you don't have a food processor just use a hand grater.

Nutritional Information: per 100g
Calories: 200
Fat: 12.7g
Sat Fat: 1.4g
Fibre: 3.5g
Protein: 2.0g
Carbs: 20.7g
Sugar: 15.8g

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Thursday 9 June 2011

Pizza with Almond Feta, Spinach, Black Olives, Pine Nuts and Spring Onion

Vegan Spinach and Almond Feta Pizza
Better than any greasy cheese pizza I've ever had ;-)

Vegan Spinach and Almond Feta Pizza
Lovely with a warmed dill olive oil drizzle

So, I think this is the 3rd dish I've made with that almond feta. I wasn't kidding when I said it was going to change my life!! One of my favourite pizza's back in the vegetarian days was always spinach and feta, so I knew it was just a matter of time before I had a go making one with the almond feta. This turned out delicious, and I will definitely be making it again! 

I have a few pizzas on here but most are with melty cheezly, which I love but it can be hard to find, however anyone can make this almond feta! Also, whenever I blog pizza I  always feel like I am just blogging the base as I always end up saying "but, just put on whatever you like". Of course you can here but these ingredients do work well together. Only thing was my base/crust could have cooked a little longer but the feta was browning a bit much. It's still cooked there, just not as golden brown as I would have liked. So next time I would either par bake the base after poking with a fork or par cook without the feta and add it a little later :-)

Just a reminder too that you need a day to make the almond feta first! 

Makes 1 large pizza for 2 very hungry people, or 4 not so hungry (or with a side):
225g extra strong white bread flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp sugar
1 tsp active dry yeast (not instant yeast)
150ml hand hot water
1 tsp olive oil (plus more for greasing)

Mix the flour and salt in a bowl and set aside. In a large bowl dissolve the sugar into the warm water then sprinkle on the yeast. Leave it for 10 minutes to get all foamy. Add the olive oil and whisk it up. Stir this into the flour with a wooden spoon until it comes together in a ball. Whilst adding some more flour to prevent sticking, knead on a floured surface for 10 minutes, it should be smooth and elastic. Cover and let rise in a warm place for about 1 hour. Punch down knead a couple times, cover and let rest 15 minutes. Now hand pat down or roll out into a circle, however thick you want the base. Keep in mind it will rise some more.

Pizza Sauce - I used Marks and Spencers Margherita Pizza Sauce here
25g toasted pine nuts
about 75 - 100g of the almond feta
baby spinach - enough to cover the pizza
25g sliced black olives
2 spring onions, chopped - green part too! :-)

Now simply spread on the sauce, I like to be quite generous with the sauce as you are not having melty cheese all over the place it helps with any dryness. Place the spinach leaves all over to cover the base then sprinkle on the olives, spring onion and pine nuts. Now crumble over the feta, again it won't melt so try and be fairly uniform here.

Place on a baking sheet  and bake in a 200C preheated oven until the crust puffs up and is golden brown and the feta is slightly golden. About 20 minutes but keep an eye on it :-)

Vegan Spinach and Almond Feta Pizza

Herb Drizzle Oil: (optional)
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 tsp chopped fresh herb - I used dill, goes lovely with this but oregano would be my other choice

Gently heat the olive oil in a small fry pan and add the herb, do not let it boil, just gently heat it up till warmed and fragrant. When the pizza is out of the oven drizzle some of the herb oil over and brush some of it around the crust.

I found 1/4 of the pizza perfect with a side salad for a meal.

Nutritional Information: based on 1/4 serving
Calories: 405
Fat: 19.3g
Sat Fat: 2.1g
Fibre: 3.5g
Protein: 9.8g
Carbs: 48.7g
Sugar: 2.0g

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