cooking

Spiced winter vegetables in yogurt

This one is adapted from a recipe in Delia's One is Fun (which I highly recommend, by the way).

1 cauliflower
1 parsnip
1 cooking apple
2 tbsp oil
1/2 tsp each cumin seeds, coriander seeds, caraway seeds and turmeric
1 pinch hing (asafetida)
Salt and pepper to taste
1 small carton Greek yogurt
1 pack almond tofu
Rice to serve

Cook your rice according to package directions. Meanwhile, separate the cauliflower into small florets. Peel the parsnip and cut it into small chunks. Dice the cooking apple (no need to peel it). Crush the seeds in a mortar and pestle. Heat the oil in a medium saucepan, stir in the spices and cook till aromatic. Add the vegetables and apple and cook over a fairly high heat until browned. Turn down the heat, season to taste and add the yogurt. Bring to a simmer, then turn the heat right down, cover and cook for 15 mins or so until the vegetables are tender. Meanwhile, cut the tofu into small chunks. When the vegetables are ready, stir in the tofu and warm through. Serve over the rice. Serves 2, takes about 40 mins from start to finish.
cooking

Spiced rice noodles with tomato and tofu frankfurters

A quick little thing modified from this recipe that went down well with aegidian this weekend (even though he's not normally keen on tofu frankfurters). I left out the mustard seeds from the original recipe because I didn't have any; next time I'll probably put them back in, but it was good as it was.

1/2 pack brown rice noodles
1 tbsp fresh curry leaves
Handful cherry tomatoes
1 pack tofu frankfurters
2 tbsp oil
Large pinch hing (asafetida)
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp mild curry powder
1 tsp lemon juice

Cook the noodles according to pack instructions. Meanwhile, chop the curry leaves, tomatoes and frankfurters. A few minutes before the noodles will be ready, eat the oil in a large saucepan and stir in the spices. Cook till aromatic, then add the curry leaves. Add the tomatoes and frankfurters, warm through and add lemon juice. When the noodles are ready, drain them and stir into the pan, mix well and serve. Serves 2, takes about 15 mins from start to finish.
cooking

Couscous with roasted vegetables and chickpeas

This is adapted from a recipe in the Sivananda Yoga Home Practice Companion. I tend to be a bit nervous about using dried pulses, as I usually find they don't soften well, but this time it worked very well. Perhaps using filtered water helps?

4 oz dried chickpeas, soaked overnight in 500ml filtered water
2 parsnips
1 large sweet potato
1 beetroot
1 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp dried oregano
2 tsp caraway seeds
4 tbsp sesame oil
Salt and black pepper to taste
8 oz wholewheat couscous
Lemon juice to serve

Preheat the oven to 180C. Drain the chickpeas and put in a medium saucepan with 500ml fresh water. Bring to the boil and cook uncovered until tender (took about 20 mins from the time they came to the boil, in my case.) Meanwhile, peel and chop the veg and toss them in a large roasting tin with the oil and herbs. Season to taste. Roast the veg for about 20 mins or until almost tender. Add the chickpeas to the roasting tin, stir and roast for another 10 mins. Meanwhile, prepare couscous according to pack instructions. Serve the veg mixture over the couscous. Squeeze some lemon juice over the top. Serves 4, takes about 45 mins from start to finish.
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Pasta with cabbage in a juniper cream sauce

This is adapted from a recipe in Nigel Slater's Plenty.

8 oz wholewheat penne
1 head white cabbage
2 tsp black peppercorns
2 tsp juniper berries
2 oz butter
1 pack almond tofu
200ml double cream

Cook pasta according to pack instructions. Meanwhile, cut the cabbage into fine shreds. Crush the peppercorns and juniper berries in a mortar and pestle. Cut the tofu into small chunks. Melt the butter in a large pan, add the peppercorns and juniper berries and saute till aromatic. Add the cabbage and continue to saute until tender. Stir in the tofu and double cream and heat through. When the pasta is ready, add it to the pan and stir till well combined. Serves 4, takes about 25 mins from start to finish.
cooking

Couscous with romanesco cauliflower

Adapted from this recipe on Allotment 2 Kitchen. I think it could be veganised by replacing the feta with basil tofu, or possibly a can of butter beans. Ordinary cauliflower should work too.

1 head romanesco cauliflower
Drizzle of olive oil
150g wholewheat giant couscous
250g feta
2 handfuls cherry tomatoes
Small handful of fresh mint
Black pepper to taste
2 tbsp pumpkin seeds

Pre-heat oven to 220C. Meanwhile, break the romanesco into small florets, put them in a roasting tin and drizzle with olive oil. Roast until just tender (about 20 mins). Meanwhile, cook couscous according to pack instructions. Cut feta into cubes. Cut cherry tomatoes into quarters. Finely chop the mint. When the couscous is ready, drain it and combine in the saucepan with the romanesco and all the other ingredients. Eat warm. Serves 3, takes about half an hour from start to finish.
cooking

Couscous with roast pumpkin and tofu

This was inspired by a recipe for pumpkin pangrattato in Nigel Slater's Plenty. I thought it made good comfort food; aegidian was less impressed, though (he likes different textures than I do and generally prefers spicy food).

1 butternut squash
5 tbsp olive oil
1 pack sesame and almond tofu
1 pinch hing (asafetida)
1 tbsp chopped rosemary
Zest of half an orange
Handful chopped parsley
3-4 handfuls wholemeal breadcrumbs (I used the heel of a homemade sourdough loaf)
Salt and pepper to taste
A thick slice of butter
4 oz giant wholemeal couscous


Peel the squash, discard the seeds and stringy bits and cut what's left into bite-sized chunks. Steam them for 15 mins. (I kept the water from the steamer and used it to cook the couscous later.) Meanwhile, pre-heat the oven to 180C and cut the tofu into small pieces. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Add the hing, rosemary and orange to the pan and stir till fragrant. Add the parsley and breadcrumbs and keep stirring until the breadcrumbs are a rich brown. Put the steamed squash in a roasting tin, season with salt and pepper and dot with butter. Scatter the breadcrumb mixture and tofu pieces over the top. Put in the oven and bake for 15 mins or till the squash is very tender. Meanwhile, cook the couscous (in the reserved water from the squash, if you kept it) according to pack instructions. Serve the squash mixture over the couscous. Serves 2-3, takes about 45 minutes from start to finish.
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Pasta bake with cheese and spinach

This was my first experiment using hing (aka asafetida; available online and presumably from Asian supermarkets if you know the right ones) rather than spring onions or leeks as a replacement for onions, which set off my IBS. It got favourable reviews.

8 oz wholewheat penne
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp wholemeal flour
Pinch of hing
3-4 cups milk
4 oz grated cheddar
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 small bag baby spinach
3-4 oz grated parmesan
Wholewheat breadcrumbs, about half the volume of the grated parmesan

Cook the pasta according to pack instructions. Meanwhile, grease a large ovenproof dish. Pre-heat the oven to 190C. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan and gradually stir in the flour. Stir in the hing, then gradually whisk in the milk. Add the cheddar and stir till melted. Season with pepper to taste. When the pasta is ready, combine it with the sauce and spinach and stir till the spinach wilts. Transfer to the ovenproof dish. Mix together the parmesan and breadcrumbs and sprinkle them over the top. Bake for 15-20 minutes. Serves 4, takes about 45 minutes from start to finish.
cooking

Spiced butternut squash with tofu sausages

I served this tonight over brown rice. It would also probably work well with other grains.

1 butternut squash
3 tbsp olive oil (or slightly less)
1 tsp spice mix (see below, or use off-the-shelf mixed spice)
fresh ground black pepper
4 tofu sausages
Brown rice or other grain to serve

Spice mix ingredients(enough for several meals):
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp ground cloves

Pre-heat the oven to 220C. Mix the spices together. Cut the peel off the squash and cut the flesh into small dice. In a roasting tin, toss the squash with 1 tsp spice mixture, black pepper to taste and 2 tbsp of the oil. Roast for 30 mins, turning halfway through. Meanwhile, prepare your rice or other grain. Towards the end of the cooking time, slice the sausages and fry them in the remaining olive oil until slightly browned. When the squash is done, mix the sausages into the pan and serve over your grain of choice. Serves 2-3, takes about 45 mins from start to finish.
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Couscous with baby sweetcorn and tomatoes

Quick couscous thing using up the last of my baby sweetcorn:

4 oz wholewheat couscous
Handful baby plum tomatoes
Handful baby corn
1 stalk celery
2 tbsp pine nuts
Squeeze of lime juice
Ground black pepper

Prepare couscous according to pack instructions. Meanwhile, chop the veg. When the couscous is ready, combine it with the veg and other ingredients. Serves 2, takes about 15 mins from start to finish.
cooking

Tomato and babycorn salad

My packed lunch for work today, which I threw together in a rush while my porridge was in the microwave, but which turned out to be really nice. I added some freshly-made wholemeal bread from the canteen for carbs.

2 handfuls rocket and watercress salad mix
1 stalk celery
1 piece babycorn
2 baby plum tomatoes
1 tbsp toasted flaked almonds
Slug of olive oil
Juice of half a lemon
Black pepper to taste

Put the salad leaves in a Tupperware or similar container. Chop the celery, babycorn and tomatoes and scatter on top. Scatter the flaked almonds over everything. In a separate, leakproof container (travel cosmetics bottles are good), mix the olive oil, lemon juice and black pepper to make the dressing. Combine the dressing and salad once ready to eat. Serves 1, takes 5-10 mins from start to finish.