Monday, 10 March 2014

Kale Chips

Oh my goodness it's time!! I'm off in an hour to New Zealand wahoo.
Totally over packed even though we have been given enormous travel bags from Douche Bags whoops.

Had a fun little weekend in London doing mega amounts of shopping and hanging out in Planet Organic drinking green juices and buying all kinds of stuff I absolutely don't need to take half way across the world. You have to understand that its massively exciting when you have been in a mountain to suddenly be let loose in your idea of heaven.

New obsession that my sister got me into is Kale chips!! The most delicious crispy little suckers ever, so I just made a batch for my long long plane journey, which I am not in anyway looking forward too, apart from the films and the swim at Singapore airports rooftop pool ooh yeah!

So heres the recipe…or not because it is so simple!!

Kale leaves (no stalks, take them off!)
Coconut oil
Crunchy sea salt…Maldon is the best

Preheat your oven to 175˚C and toss your kale with some melted coconut oil and sprinkle with some sea salt.

Chuck them on a baking sheet and spread them out then cook in the oven for about 10-15 mins until they are nice and crisp like. Sprinkle with some more salt and munch away!

Sunday, 2 March 2014

Coconutty lemongrass, chilli and lime pumpkin soup

Super exciting news, well it's not mega news because I have had it booked for ages...but now it's actually here. I am off to New Zealand in 1 week wahooo! So ridiculously excited, two weeks in what looks like the coolest country ever. Me and two friends are travelling over for a friends wedding just outside Wanaka and the whole trip just sounds way too cool. As soon as we get there we are off to go surfing with dolphins for the hen doo! And it's going to be hot!

I am hoping that this will be my last wintery post since when we get back to the mountains spring should be creeping up. So voila, yummy thai style pumpkin soup to keep all you cold people warm!

Serves 6

2 tbsp coconut oil
4 small shallots, thinly sliced
3 big garlic cloves, thinly sliced
4 lemongrass stalks, peeled and finely chopped
1 birdseye chilli, chopped
2 skinny thumb sized pieces of ginger, peeled and chopped
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander

2kg pumpkin, peeled and chopped roughly into 2cm sized chunks
500ml coconut milk
about 2-3 cups water
1 bunch coriander, chop stalks and leaves
2 tbsp fish sauce
1 lime zested, and juiced
Salt and pepper

Grab yourself a big saucepan thats going to fit everything in and on a medium heat fry off the shallots gently with the coconut oil.

When nice and soft add everything in the top list and cook off for about 5 minutes until nice and fragrant smells are wafting up your nose. Then chuck in the pumpkin, give it all a stir and add the water, coriander stalks, coconut milk, fish sauce and some seasoning.

Stick a lid on it and leave to simmer until the pumpkin is totally soft. Using a hand blender whizz it all up with the rest of the chopped coriander until it's all velvelty and smooth.

Check the seasoning and add the lime zest and juice. Serve with either some more chopped coriander or some black sesame seeds. Bon Appetit!

Sunday, 23 February 2014

Aubergine, spinach and chickpea lasagna with feta and tomato sauce

This was the best by accident recipe ever!

I made a whole load of spinach, chickpea and feta puffs the other week for my friends birthday and had some filling left over. Soooo first I had it with scrambled eggs as a hangover breakfast after the party…totally hit the spot! Then I chucked it in some pasta for lunch, also a winner. Then, slap you round the face fantastic, I used it as a layer in an aubergine parmigiana and boom, flavour explosions! I have had it about every other day for the past week playing around with the recipe, and word has spread and all my friends are making it and even their friends too. It's like some sort of veggie lasagna mania has started…I'm not going to lie...I feel pretty cool right now!

Anyway cut to the chase here is my groovy recipe.

serves 3

Tomato sauce
800g tinned plum tomatoes ( ths will make too much but then you can have some in the fridge)
4 cloves of garlic, finely sliced
1 handful fresh basil leaves
olive oil

2 aubergines, cut lengthways into 1 cm strips or discs

Le green layer
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 big shallot, sliced
130g spinach..either fresh and wilted or frozen, with the water squeezed out
1 cup feta
1 cup chickpeas
1 egg
½ ground coriander
½ lemon zested
handful fresh coriander leaves

First off preheat your oven to 180˚C.
To make the tomato sauce, thinly slice the garlic and gently fry in about 3 good glugs of olive oil. You want the garlic to sizzle gently but not turn coloured at all. Watch it carefully because if it burns your sauce will just taste of burnt garlic. Once your at the point where you don't dare to cook it any more add the tinned tomatoes and basil, give it some seasoning love and leave to bubble slowly on a low-medium heat for about 30 mins -1 hour. If it gets too dry and thick you can just add a splash of water. When it's ready give it a quick blast with a hand blender to get it smooth.

For the aubergine, lay out the strips on some baking paper and bake in the oven until they are soft, normally 30-45 mins.

While thats all going on chop your shallot and garlic quite fine and gently sweat off in a pan with some olive oil until it's soft.

Hopefully you are lucky enough to have a magimix for the next bit, if you don't you can just chop all the next ingredients together and mix in a bowl.

Chuck everything for the green layer and the cooked shallot and garlic into the magimix bowl with seasoning and pulse a couple of times until it's all combined but still chunky, too much mixing will turn it into a green puree!

When everything is ready you can start layering it up into a dish. First spoon tomato on the base, then layer up the aubergine and then the green layer and carry on the same until you reach the top. You should have loads of tomato sauce and you want that as your top layer. Sprinkle with some feta on top to finish it and then stick it in the oven until it's bubbling hot. About 30 mins. Don't be alarmed if it looks a bit like slop! Serve it with a crunchy green salad. Bon spanking appetit!

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Black rice noodles with curried coconut

 My friend mentioned the other day how cool it would be if there was an app where you could type all the ingredients you have in your fridge and "bing" it would spit out a recipe. Pretty cool idea if you don't have a mega foodie, creative brain.

This made me want to share my Sunday night go to recipe…noodles! I think noodle soup and anything noodley is an easy base to use up all your leftovers with some spices from your cupboard. You can put in whatever you have in it, obviously it helps if you have the ginger and chillis but if you don't and have some thai or indian curry paste leftover use that. You can make it more soupy by adding veggie stock, basically there are no rules so get loose and chuck in whatever you fancy.

Serves 2

1tbsp coconut oil
1 big shallot finely sliced
1 leek sliced
2 garlic cloves finely chopped
1 thumb sized piece of ginger, peeled and finely chopped
½ red chilli sliced
½ tsp cumin
½ tsp coriander
1big shallot finely sliced
1 leek sliced

250ml coconut milk
1 tsp fish sauce

½ red pepper cubed
big handful of spinach leaves

squeeze of lime juice

Bring a pan of water up to the boil for the noodles.

In a big frying pan melt the coconut oil on a medium heat then add the shallots and leeks, when soft add the garlic, chilli, ginger and spices and fry for a few minutes.

Then start to cook the noodles, when ready drain and run under cold water and set aside until it's time to add them.

Pour the coconut milk into the pan with the spices etc and the fish sauce, bring to the boil and season, when your happy with the taste add the spinach and red peppers, cook until the spinach has wilted and then add the noodles.

Serve with a lime wedge to squeeze on top and some sesame seeds sprinkled over. Bon Appetit!

Sunday, 9 February 2014

RAW Mint chocolate truffles

Are you ready for something super cool that quite possibly almost tastes like a chocolate truffle but isn't?? I have been very unexperimental with my nutty, vegan style, sweet treats recently, but I have got back into this week with a bang.

These sumptuous goodies are inspired by a raw mint chocolate brownie I had in Copenhagen at Raw42 which was totally amazing but obviously not as good as my own little creations. These are awesome little snacks to have in your bag for hungry, sweet craving moments.

makes 20 balls

I cup of pitted dates (if dried soak them first)
1 cup almonds
1 cup dessicated coconut
1/2 cup raw cacao powder
2 tbsp coconut oil
1 small thumb sized piece of banana
1 tbsp cacao nibs
1/4 tsp salt
1tsp peppermint essence

Put the almonds and the dessicated coconut into the magimix and blend until finely ground. Add the cacao powder, nibs, and salt and whizz for a second before adding the rest of the ingredients.

Blend it all until it comes together and you can squidge it together and ool it into balls.

Dust with cacao powder or coconut and keep in the fridge. Yum yum in your tum!

They should keep for a week in the fridge.

Thursday, 30 January 2014

Chilli jam

This Christmas I was slighty stuck on what little presents to get lots of people so I ended up getting all creative and making gifts. I am not a hugely creative person apart from a little obbsession I had recently with making pom poms. Which, by the way are still quite possibly the coolest things EVER and a great way to decorate your house, or in my case, the Christmas tree, my car, a light in our room and I even made a crazy wall installation thing inspired from pinterest which was pretty bad.

Anyway I used my other talent and I made lots of jam! This recipe is really bloody delicious and is just generally an awesome thing to have in the fridge to go with snacks and on the side or in meals to add a spicy amazingness. I hear from my friend Anna that it goes nicely with a block of cheese!

The recipe is from Diva by Victoria Blashford-Snell a famous local chef to us in Dorset who's book is totally fab. This is exactly her recipe but I added some lemongrass too to make it even more asiany. The photos are from the countryside shoot I did at my parents home in Dorset with my friend and super star photographer Aneta Mak.

makes about 2 jars depending on the size

500g ripe tomatoes chopped
4 red chillies, seeded and chopped
4 garlic cloves
5cm piece of ginger, chopped
2 stalks of lemongrass peeled and chopped
2 tbsp Thai fish sauce

300g soft brown sugar
100ml red wine vinegar
3 fresh Thai lime leaves (or dried if you can't get fresh)
55g raisins

Place half the tomatoes, the chilli, garlic, ginger, lemongrass and fish sauce in a food processor and blend to a puree.

Place the puree in a heavy-based saucepan with the sugar, vinegar, lime leaves and raisins and bring to the boil slowly, stirring.

Chop the rest of the tomatoes up into small squares and add to the jam once it has come to the boil along with the outer leaves of the lemongrass.

Simmer gently for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.  If the tomatoes are very watery it may need longer, but the jam will thicken when cold. Remove the lime leaves and the lemongrass stalks and when cool pour into steralised jars and keep in the fridge. It should last for months if sealed tightly.

Buy some pretty jars and some ribbon or nice string with labels to give a more personal pretty touch. I use Weck jars because they are really cute. Happy present giving!