Friday, 25 November 2011

Other Blogger's Recipes - Part 2

So, this is a continuation of the blog post I did back in May of this year of other blogger's recipes. Something I do not do as often as I should!  One is from a blog that is no longer available and the other is from a restaurant's website. Both are amazing and we now have them regularly - well, maybe not the brownies regularly ;-) Honest!!

Super Fudgy Brownies  - originally from the (now gone) blog "Not A Rabbit" reposted at "Cooking Vegan Food Up North"

♥ Aaaah, look at that perfect crackly topping!! ♥


I have so many people to thank for this recipe. First, the original author of the blog "Not a Rabbit" - unfortunately I had never seen this blog and it's now gone, sad, because if this brownie recipe is anything to go by it must have been a good one! Second, Fanny at "Cooking Vegan Food Up North" for saving the recipe and reposting it, and third, Julia at "Snarky Vegan" for tweeting about this recipe and providing the link to it.

I cannot tell you how happy I am to have this recipe in my life. You may have noticed that despite having over 250 recipes on this blog I don't have a basic brownie recipe. This is down to me searching for the perfect one, I tried so many, and to be fair they were all good. I mean a brownie can't really be bad can it?!? But I really wanted that crackly thin skin topping ALL good brownies should have, as well as a really dense super fudgy texture bursting with full on chocolate flavour. This one ticks all those boxes. So the search is over and this one is so perfect in every way I'm not even gutted I didn't come up with it!! It really is the BEST brownie recipe. EVER!

I hope this is ok but as the original blog is gone I'm also going to post the recipe here because I have converted the one posted at Northern Veg there into grams and ml's for those of us on this side of the Atlantic. I also didn't have vanilla sugar so added some vanilla extract. Just click on the recipe link above to get the original in cups if you prefer.

Super Fudgy Brownies

150g granulated sugar - must be this type, not caster
60ml vegetable oil
125ml chocolate soya milk 
160g dark chocolate
80g plain flour
2 Tbsp cocoa powder
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Line a 7 or 8 inch square baking tin with baking paper, mine was actually 6 inch, and preheat the oven to 180C.

Place the sugar in a blender and whizz until it's a fine powder and tip into a large bowl. As the original poster states, do not omit this part, it's what gives the brownies their crackly topping. I also thought I would just omit this step and use caster sugar instead but I'm glad I didn't. Granulated sugar blended comes out somewhat in between caster and icing sugar so I'm sure this step is essential, at any rate it's dead simple!

Mix together the flour and sifted cocoa powder and set aside.

Pour the oil, chocolate soya milk and vanilla into the sugar and mix well.

Melt the chocolate in the microwave and quickly whisk into the oil/sugar mixture.

Quickly stir in the flour/cocoa mixture and mix well with a wooden spoon until it all comes together.

Pour/scrape into the prepared tin and bake for 15 - 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Mine took 20 minutes in a fan oven.

Leave to fully cool then refrigerate for a couple of hours before cutting. It wasn't explained why this is but I think if you try and cut them whilst warm they might just fall apart. I did as told and they came out perfect, once I cut them though I stored them at room temperature. 

Cut into whatever size you like, I got 16 small squares out of this as even though they are small, they are 140 calories per square ;-) SO worth it though!

Slow Roasted Red Peppers with Chickpeas, Smoked Paprika and Fresh Sage by Demuths Vegetarian Restaurant


Demuth's is a Vegetarian restaurant in Bath, England who also have a blog. Sadly despite living in England for 12 years we never got the pleasure to eat there. Thankfully I follow them on twitter and one day they tweeted a link to this recipe on their website. I knew I had to try it right away as it had all my favourite flavours there and just sounded amazing!

This is absolutely delicious, so simple, versatile and now on our regular dinner rotation. Once, I had no cherry tomatoes but had mushrooms so added those instead, it was equally as good. So good in fact I now add both mushrooms and tomatoes on most occasions. They recommended a side with it and I opted for a lemon couscous which I think goes lovely with the flavours in the slow roasted peppers.

What's really nice in this is besides the deeply roasted peppers is that the chickpeas in the peppers stay soft but the ones outside of the peppers get all roasted crispy providing a different taste and texture in the dish. Sometimes I use fresh sage, sometimes dried, like I said, it's very versatile. Their recipe called for sweet paprika but I used smoked as I'm sure most of you who have followed me for awhile it's hands down my favourite spice :-)

Before going in the oven

So there you go, a couple more outstanding recipes found online, mostly thanks to twitter! 

I keep looking at these two recipes here thinking, damn, that would make a fine meal, roasted red peppers and couscous and brownies for dessert :-) Being vegan is fantastically tasty!
This photo is from Feb. 2013 - we are still loving it! As you can see we have a reduced portion these days though, just half a pepper each. I also now use wholegrain couscous which works just as well.

Perfect Gingerbread from Kake's Vegan Cookery Site


Please excuse the rather boring photo here, I took this last year in a rush and haven't gotten around to taking better photos of this. Regardless, I have been making this gingerbread for years now, ever since we became vegan and it really is perfection. The flavour and spices are spot on and look at that texture! It's absolutely heavenly and fills your kitchen with the most amazing wintry spices. I've served this to many omnivores who have also raved about it. The cream there is my rummed up vegan whipped cream I like to serve with my Marzipan Mince Pies, they go really well together :-)

I was also very honoured to be given a 'Liebster Blog' award by Sophia over at 'What Your Momma Didn't Know' (BEST Blog name EVER!!) :-D  Thank you so much!

Here are the rules if you would like to participate:

1. Show your thanks by linking back to the blogger who gave it to you.
2. Choose 5 of your picks and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.
3. Post the award on your blog.
4. Enjoy the blogger love!

I've decided to use this opportunity to pimp some great Irish Vegan Blogs, here they are!

4. Full Irish Vegan - sadly not sure this is updated anymore :-(

...and I think that's it! If I am missing any Vegan Irish Blogs here, please let me know, would love to connect!

Friday, 18 November 2011

Champagne Celebration Cake with Peach Bellini Buttercream

Champagne Cake with Peach Bellini Buttercream

♥ Vanilla Champagne cake with Peach Bellini Buttercream ♥

Champagne Cake with Peach Bellini Buttercream

♥ Mmmm, cake at many angles! ♥

Champagne Cake with Peach Bellini Buttercream

Champagne Cake with Peach Bellini Buttercream

♥ Mini Non-Alcoholic version I made for my son - adult only this cake people! ♥

Yay! I'm back to cake with no ready made ingredients!! I decided to bake up a rather special cake to celebrate us living in our new house 1 year, not that I usually need an excuse ;-) This turned out so well but was a rather glorious mistake.... I came up with this idea whilst on my personal baking holy grail - the perfect vegan white cake. It has eluded me so far despite numerous attempts and nothing online works. I should add here I'm being very picky, I want my vegan white cake to be white, fluffy with a delicate crumb and perfect vanilla flavour. Surely that's not too much to ask is it?

Now, the chocolate cake I always use is perfect. It's the basic wacky cake recipe that's out there and I love it. Chocolaty but also really light and fluffy with a fine crumb. Not a dense, gummy or heavy crumb in sight, which got me thinking it you omit the cocoa powder it should be the same, right? No. I believe this is the version on veg web that others seem to like but it's not for me. Without the cocoa powder we were back to dense, heavy and gummy. I used the veg web version there for my son's cake and he wasn't very happy with it :-(

The wacky cake works by the acid of the vinegar reacting with the alkaline baking soda which was still in the white cake version so I couldn't' figure out why it didn't' work. Turns out that cocoa powder is itself acidic and can't really be omitted. I then looked into replacing the water with sparkling water to help give it a lift. Sparkling water has a slightly more acidity level than regular water but not as much as cocoa powder. I then wondered about Champagne. Turns out it has the same acidity level as cocoa powder. Perfect!! I was convinced this would work, it certainly did on paper.

Well, sadly no. I didn't' get my white, fluffy cake here, but I did get a really moist, flipping delicious cake! I was so obsessed with getting the texture right in this cake that I forgot just how much Champagne was going into it, and believe me, you can taste it! This is a good thing :-) This cake has a really nice and boozy taste to it which went beautifully with the Peach Bellini Buttercream. If I could describe the texture here, it's somewhat like what a cake drizzled with a syrup might be like, a boozy syrup at that, it really is that moist and tastes incredible.

SO, the quest for the perfect vegan white cake continues, but, I have at least found another albeit completely different style cake I love in the process, and that's never a bad thing!

Oh and that buttercream is amazing, I am so glad it turned out as you can't buy peach extract here I debated on how to make it. I would have liked to have used fresh peaches but felt as they are not in season they would just be too watery. The canned worked great as the flavour was more concentrated and made it a bit easier too :-)

Champagne Cake with Peach Bellini Buttercream

Champagne Celebration Cake with Peach Bellini Buttercream: 

400g plain flour
300g caster sugar
1 tsp salt
2 tsp baking soda
1 Tbsp vanilla extract
160ml vegetable oil
2 Tbsp white wine vinegar
480ml chilled Champagne, or sparkling wine
1 can peaches in light syrup (standard 400g tin)
100g vegan butter
6 cups or about 840g icing sugar
1 Tbsp Champagne

For the cake, I used a loose bottomed, high sided 6" cake pan. This is probably a unique sized pan and you can just use 2 standard sized cake pans here. Your cake will probably be wider and not as high as mine however. Line the bottoms of the pans with baking paper and grease the sides. Preheat the oven to 180C.

In a large bowl whisk together all the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl whisk together the wet. Pour the wet into the dry and whisk until combined and no lumps remain. Pour into the prepared pan/s and bake, mine took 1 hour as it was all cooked together, if you are cooking 2 pans, check with a toothpick after 1/2 hour, if it comes out doughy keep cooking until it is firm to the touch, golden and the toothpick comes out clean. Let cool in the pans for about 15 minutes then remove from the pans onto a wire rack to fully cool.

Peach Bellini Buttercream:

First you want to make a concentrated peach puree. Drain the peaches - you don't have to save the liquid. I used peaches in light syrup here, I'm sure peaches in juice would work as well. Tip them all into a blender and blend until very smooth. Push this mixture through a fine sieve to get it as fine as possible. Now pour this into a saucepan and bring to the heat. You want to simmer this mixture down until it is much thicker and more concentrated. That way it won't make your icing runny, resulting in having to add even more sugar and it will give you a strong peachy taste. Simmer, stirring constantly until it is thick enough that when you move the wooden spoon along the middle of the mixture it stays separated for a brief time before coming together again. In the end you should have 1/2 cup of puree. Pop this into the fridge to fully cool and thicken some more.

In a mixer add the vegan butter and mix until soften, or by hand. Add some of the peach puree and some of the icing sugar and mix until well blended. When it's a bit dry add the Champagne then continue to add the puree and icing sugar until all is added. If it's too wet, add some more icing sugar, too dry, add a bit more Champagne. You want it too be a thick yet spreadable frosting.


If you have cooked just one large cake like I did, carefully slice it in half and separate the halves. Place one half on a cake stand and frost generously with the peach buttercream. Place the other half on top and frost the whole cake, top and sides. The buttercream recipe makes way more than you need for this cake as it's nice to have extra if you would like to pipe designs along the cake. I kept mine simple as I found these super cute Wafer Daisy's by Dr. Oetker - so cute and vegan! Actually they're not just vegan but really not bad for you at all, just rice and potato flour and the colours come from beetroot and turmeric- all natural! Nice.

Champagne Cake with Peach Bellini Buttercream

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Vegan Chicken Noodle Soup

Vegan Chicken Noodle Soup
♥ Based on Campbell's Chicken Noodle Soup ♥

First, I must apologize for posting another 'chicken' post featuring a ready made product - my 3rd this month! My new followers must be thinking, wtf?!? I don't normally post so much with a ready made product but I have recently discovered these and absolutely love them.

More than that though I have been doing a lot of "nostalgia cooking" lately. Like the Crispy Almond Chicken post below this is another dish I had growing up and have missed. It's veganizing dishes like this that I think are the most enjoyable, the ones that bring a smile to your face because they bring back so many memories. My rullepolse post probably was my favourite one to veganize for that reason, it was like every single Christmas brought right back to me :-)

Back in elementary school I used to walk home for lunch almost every day as we lived so close and more often than not I would have a bowl of Campbell's Chicken Noodle Soup. Let's face it, it might not be very healthy but it's a standard. I thought it would veganize well for two reasons:

1. Finding that vegan chicken I like and
2. The vegan stock powder I use is a golden yellow hue like Campbell's due to having some turmeric in it and even though it's not based on a chicken stock I've always found it reminded me of a light chicken stock.

This does of course mean that I have veganized a product you can only buy in North America (Campbell's Chicken Noodle Soup) with ingredients I think you can only buy in Europe. Oh well, one for all the vegan ex-pats over here then!!

I opted for Udon Noodles here to replicate the thickness of Campbell's and just broke them up into 4ths to be easier to eat. I chopped the chicken into small pieces while still frozen, it's easy to do and you do want to cook these from frozen so they don't cook to mush. It's all simply cooked in the stock powder which does remind me so much of Campbell's broth and when you cook the chicken in it the chicken flavouring comes out in the broth as well. In the end I stir in a pat of vegan butter just for a bit of richness and to help give the broth a glossy hue.

Altogether this was a beautiful version of Campbell's Chicken Noodle Soup and even with the highly processed vegan ready made chicken, bags healthier than their version!

Vegan Chicken Noodle Soup - a la Campbell's ;-) - Serves 1

40g Udon Noodles, broken into third's
30g Fry's Chicken Style Strips, frozen, chopped small 
1 tsp Marigold Vegan Stock Powder
1 tsp vegan butter, I use Vitalite
400ml water

Note - you can pre boil the udon for 8 -10 minutes in salted water, drain then use as instructed below if you want a softer noodle as Campbell's noodles are very soft. I did this the second time I made it and preferred it this way. I also discovered that it's pretty much impossible to overcook udon!

Bring the water and stock powder to the boil and add the noodles. Cover and simmer for 8 -10 minutes, or according to your package directions. When there is a few minutes left add the chicken and simmer until cooked, it'll only take a few minutes. At the very end stir in the butter until melted. Serve immediately with some fresh bread and vegan butter, perfect on a cold wintry day.

Vegan Chicken Noodle Soup

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Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Crispy Fried Almond 'Chicken' with Gravy (Soo Guy)

Crispy Fried Almond Chicken - Vegan

♥ Crispy fried breaded 'chicken' with a soy sauce gravy and toasted almonds ♥

Vegan Crispy Fried Almond Chicken with Gravy

You know what's winning? Having a massive craving for this crispy almond chicken you used to get from your local Chinese takeaway in Canada ages ago and instantly veganizing it to perfection. Word. I simply cannot get over how perfect this turned out, it really is just as I remembered!  I really have no idea what made me think of this dish I used to love so much, but I did, and had to make it then and there.

So I had a search online and discovered that it's actually quite a uniquely Canadian-Chinese dish. Sometimes just called 'Crispy Almond Chicken' or 'Soo Guy' it is usually a chicken breast, either breaded or battered, fried and served sliced on a bed of shredded lettuce with a brown gravy and toasted almonds. Back home when we would order Chinese this was always what I looked forward to the most. So much so that my mom used to have to buy two because despite ordering a large selection of food I would pretty much eat just the crispy fried almond chicken. Yeah...she's surprised I'm now vegan too.

Despite there not really being a lot of recipes out there for this I got the general idea: fried breaded chicken, gravy - probably soy sauce based, lettuce and toasted almonds. As I mentioned in the Vegan Chicken, Sun-Dried Tomato and Basil Sausage Roll post I have finally found ready made vegan chicken I love - Fry's chicken strips and thought to base this on those. Similarly to the rolls I first lightly boiled the frozen chicken to defrost, soften and to make a chicken stock which I then used to make the gravy.

As for the breading part - this I am most excited about. I have been struggling to get breaded items to have a  really crispy coating that does not fall apart whilst frying without eggs. For these I tossed the lightly boiled chicken strips in cornflour, then my homemade 'egg' mixture of cornflour, baking powder, xanthan gum, water and vegetable oil then into the breadcrumbs. Once fried these came out perfect! Thick, super crispy breadcrumb coating that does not fall apart. I really can't wait to try this with other foods too.

Without the gravy - look how crispy!!

Altogether this was such a win. I cannot convey to you how much this reminded me of that dish I used to love so much. The best part is having that gravy soak into the crispy breaded coating - heaven!

Vegan Soo Guy

Crispy Fried Almond Chicken with Gravy (Soo Guy) - serves 2 as a side

50g Fry's chicken style strips, or similar, frozen

1 Tbsp cornflour (cornstarch)
1/8 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp xanthan gum
1 tsp vegetable oil
50 ml water
*OR just some unsweetened soy yogurt

25g breadcrumbs, I like to use freshly made from stale bread here, or panko.
2 Tbsp chopped almonds

extra cornflour to coat
shredded lettuce to serve
vegetable oil to fry

2 Tbsp cornflour
3 Tbsp water
1 Tbsp vegan butter
4 tsp soy sauce
1 1/2 cups water

* 2014 EDIT - I've recently discovered that dipping the "chicken" into unsweetened soy yogurt after some cornflour works just as well as my homemade egg replacer and is, less face it - easier!

First toast the chopped almonds in a wok until lightly golden and fragrant. Set aside and give the wok a wipe with a dry towel as you'll be using it to fry later.

In a small saucepan bring the 1 1/2 cups of water for the sauce to the boil. Add the frozen chicken strips and lightly boil with the lid on for 3 minutes. Remove the chicken with a slotted spoon or a couple of forks and drain on a clean kitchen towel. Do not dump the water! Add the vegan butter and soy sauce to the chicken stock and heat until the butter melts then turn off the heat. In another saucepan mix the cornstarch with 3 Tbsp water until smooth then slowly add the chicken soy stock until all is added. Heat and stir until thick and glossy. Check seasoning, turn off heat and set aside.

In a small bowl add the cornflour, baking powder and xanthan gum and whisk. Add the water and vegetable oil and whisk really well until it is smooth and really thick. Toss the drained chicken strips into some more cornflour, then coat them in the batter (or some unsweetened soy yogurt) then into the breadcrumbs. It's easiest to have one hand for the batter and the other hand for the breadcrumbs here. Keep going until all the strips are coated and place them on a plate ready to fry.

Heat about an inch or two of vegetable oil  in the wok you used to toast the almonds until it is very hot. Gently place the breaded chicken into the oil and fry until crisp and golden on both sides. Remove and drain on paper towels. Repeat until all the chicken is fried.

Reheat the gravy and give it a whisk- if it has thickened too much, you can also add a bit more water. Place some shredded lettuce on a plate, top with the fried chicken then spoon over the gravy generously. Sprinkle over the toasted almonds and serve immediately. These are nice on their own, with a bowl of rice or as part of a larger Chinese style buffet.

The only photo I got of them cut open, too busy eating!!

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Sunday, 13 November 2011

Marzipan Mince Pie Croissants

♥ Marzipan and Mince filled croissants with a drizzle of Almond Icing ♥

So, basically I've been having a mince pie craving lately but felt it was a little early to dig out the mince pie tart pan. Enter the mince pie croissant. These are so amazingly delicious I'm not sure I'll go back to the traditional mince pie :-) They are also a great example that there are vegan ready made ingredients out there, and no we don't have to make everything from scratch! The tube of croissant dough, mince pie filling and marzipan are all ready made and all vegan making these dead simple to whip up.

I've made these with Jus-Rol brand croissant tubes which just happen to be vegan. Back when we lived in London I used to buy the Aldi brand ones which were also vegan but they stopped making them. I cannot tell you how happy I was to discover the Jus-Rol ones were vegan. They make fantastic croissants, although, me being me I've never made them plain! I always either fill them with chocolate for a Pain au Chocolate or my personal favourite, Frangipane. I'm very happy to add these to the list.

The addition of marzipan is simply a personal favourite of mine as I make my regular mince pie's that way but is easily omittable if it's not your thing. Make sure you roll out it very thin and don't line the entire triangle with marzipan, a simple strip will do. These are very rich, in a good way, and make for a fine, sweet breakfast. Next time I may try slicing the triangles in half again to make smaller croissants for afternoon coffee. Either way they are so flipping good!

Marzipan Mince Pie Croissants:

1 tube Jus-Rol Croissant dough
1 jar of mince pie filling, you'll need about half
100g icing sugar
1 Tbsp dairy free milk
1/4 tsp almond extract
flaked almonds 
icing sugar to dust

Preheat the oven to 180C and line a baking sheet with baking paper. Unroll the croissant dough and cut out the triangles where perforated. Very thinly roll out the marzipan and lay a strip down each triangle. Spoon in some mince pie filling, about 1-2 tsp, be careful not to overfill these. Roll up the dough starting from the wide end and place on the baking sheet.

If you are adding flaked almonds, mix up cornstarch with a little cold water to make a 'glue' add enough water to just make it brush-able. Brush this on top of each croissant then add some flaked almonds making sure they stick.

Bake in the preheated oven for 12 - 15 minutes, turn the pan if need be if they are not evenly browning. Due to the mince pie filling in these, give them a little more time than you think they'll need so that the bottoms are not soggy. Remove from the pan and let cool. You can either eat them warm now but if you would like the almond drizzle you'll have to wait for them to fully cool or the icing will melt.

To make the drizzle simply whisk the icing sugar, milk and extract together until you have a thick but pour-able icing and drizzle this back and forth over the croissants. Dust with a little icing sugar and serve, these are absolutely gorgeous with coffee!

Nutritional Information: per croissant

Calories: 375
Protein: 4.6g
Fat: 11.2g
Carbs: 54.3g
Sugar: 29.4g
Fibre: 1g
Sodium: 200mg

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Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Chilli and Rosemary Socca

I introduce you to my new beer snack of choice - socca. We are loving this at the moment, I have been whipping up a plate of these almost every evening lately to have with an ice cold ale as they go perfectly together. No boring nuts or pretzels for us, puh-lease!

So what is socca? I'm sure most of you are asking as such, it's something that's only come into my radar recently, having seen it in a cookbook and a take on this version in the October issue of Irish Food and Wine magazine. Apparently it's French street food, particularly from Nice and despite variations it's basic ingredients are chickpea flour and olive oil. It's like a soft, thin pancake and I've seen images of it thinner than this and thicker, so do what you like. It's also traditionally served warm with lots of black pepper and a good drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Wikipedia has a nice entry on it, just scroll down to France for the socca version.

I've changed the way I cook mine a few times now and am pleased with this version. Socca, by nature, sticks like mad to the pan. The impression I get in France is that they use very well seasoned copper pans and a wood burning oven, techniques us average home cooks simply cannot recreate. So my primary concern was to get all that yummy socca off the pan and not worry so much about authenticity, after all, I've never even had socca before! So to combat that I now line a baking sheet with baking paper, pour the batter on, thin it out with a pallette knife then bake. The baking paper ensures that all the socca comes off and is so much less stressful. Is it traditional? Probably not, but then again, neither is being vegan and we're cool with that, right? :-)

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

White and Dark Chocolate Mocha Hazelnut Layered Mousse

Vegan White and Dark Chocolate Mocha Hazelnut Layered Mousse

♥ Dark Chocolate Kahlua Layer ♥
♥ White Chocolate Frangelico Layer ♥
♥ White and Dark Chocolate Mocha Hazelnut Layer ♥

Vegan White and Dark Chocolate Mocha Hazelnut Layered Mousse

Well, you all know I love my mousse! This was really a test as I have made mousse many times to layer within cakes and have made it on it's own in parfait glasses but I haven't tried a slice-able version. I really wasn't sure if the mousse would be firm enough to slice and hold it's shape once removed from the tin but as you can see it was all a success!

I based this on a recipe I saw for triple chocolate mousse which layered dark, white and milk chocolate. As the milk chocolate layer isn't really veganizable (is that a word??) I opted to mix the dark and white mousse for a contrast in colour for the top layer. This meant that the liqueur that I added to the dark and white had to go together as they would be mixed for the top layer. After much deliberation I settled on Kahlua (coffee) for the dark chocolate and Frangelico (hazelnut) for the white chocolate. This also meant that the white chocolate didn't change colour much as it's quite a pale liqueur. Combined they make a kind of mocha hazlenut top layer and altogether this mousse is sublime!

White Chocolate Mocha Hazelnut Layered Mousse 
serves 8

200g dark chocolate, chopped
200ml soya whipping cream, chilled
3 Tbsp icing sugar, sifted after measuring
3 Tbsp Kahlua

200g vegan white chocolate
200ml soya whipping cream, chilled
3 Tbsp icing sugar, sifted after measuring
3 Tbsp Frangelico

First a warning - this needs a shed load of bowls so get prepared! Now completely line a standard size loaf tin with cling film so that it overhangs all edges. Melt the dark and the white chocolate separately, I did this placing bowls over pots of simmering water but you could also microwave. Once they have melted scrape them into separate bowls to cool down, they will take too long to cool if you leave them in the bowl you melted them in. Keep giving them a stir to help them cool.

Place the whipping cream into 2 large bowls (200ml in each bowl) and whisk in the icing sugar. Now you have to wait until the chocolates are close to room temperature, if you whisk hot or too warm chocolate into the cold soya cream it will seize up. When ready start with the dark chocolate and scrape it slowly into the whipping cream whisking all the time. When it looks all combined then you can slowly start to whisk in the Kahlua a bit at a time then set it aside.

Repeat the same process with the white chocolate and Frangelico but don't worry if this one seems floppier than the dark chocolate, they set the same.

Now take 1/3 of the dark chocolate mousse and place in another bowl (told you it takes a lot of bowls!) and take 1/3 of the white chocolate mousse and add that and whisk these together well. Now you should have equal bowls of dark chocolate, white chocolate and mixed mousse. Being precise as I am I weighed the mousse to figure out exactly 1/3, but you could just eyeball it of course!

Spoon the dark chocolate mousse into the loaf tin and level off as best you can. Top with the white chocolate mousse then the mixed mousse levelling off each layer. Now place it in the fridge to fully set, best to leave it overnight but 5 hours should do it.

Vegan White and Dark Chocolate Mocha Hazelnut Layered Mousse

To remove, carefully lift the whole mousse out of the tin, it helps to have someone else around to pull the tin down while you lift up. Place the mousse on a chopping board or serving plate. Now, the cling film will be impossible to get off the bottom here so I sliced the film off around the mousse leaving it underneath (no one can see it anyway) then carefully transferred the whole mousse to my serving plate with 2 large spatulas.

I opted to decorate this with some shaved dark chocolate on top and made some dark and white chocolate stars just for fun. You simply melt some chocolate and pipe some shapes onto baking paper, chill then lift off the paper and decorate as you wish.

Vegan White and Dark Chocolate Mocha Hazelnut Layered Mousse

2013 EDIT - Feeling lazy? Just spoon one layer into wine glasses for the best and easiest chocolate mousse. I simply used the dark chocolate kahlua version here and spooned it into 6 small wine glasses.

Perfect Vegan Chocolate Mousse

 Look at that perfect moussy texture!! No chocolate pudding masquerading under the name mousse here!!!

Perfect Vegan Chocolate Mousse

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Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Vegan Chicken, Sun-Dried Tomato and Basil Sausage Rolls

Vegan Sausage Rolls
Happy World Vegan Day!!!!

So, I made these the other day and I'm not kidding when I say this: they are the best sausage rolls I've ever had!! Simply delicious, and considering it's World Vegan Day I felt a party food post would be most appropriate. Seriously, if you're having a get together tonight whip a plate of these and watch them go ;-)

The idea came from a BBC Good Food recipe for "summer sausage rolls" that contained chicken, bacon, sundried tomatoes and basil. I thought they sounded nice and now that I have finally found vegan chicken style pieces I love - Fry's brand - thought I would veganize them up. I opted to omit the bacon as I didn't want faux meat overload here and the vegan bacon I buy really wouldn't process very well. I added a bit of smoked sea salt instead and also added a spring onion.

Altogether they came out beautifully, these are full of flavour and have a perfect texture. Obviously they will vary in taste and texture depending on your brand of faux chicken but I can say that these, with Fry's, are so, so good. I'll be making these quite often I'm sure, especially for get together's as they make perfect party food. As they are so full of flavour I would advise making them small like this, a full size sausage roll might be a bit much.... that being said, I ate 7 in one sitting - oooops!

Vegan Sausage Rolls