ZB's Vegan Recipes

Here's where you can find some fun, tasty and generally pretty easy-to-make vegan (and often low GI) recipes. Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Parmigiana - Quick and Easy Style!

I had a yearning for either Tempeh Reuben or Parmigiana for dinner today - don't know why, it's been 800 million degrees and I really should just be yearning for salad...it's probably the new exercise regime (personal training 3 times a week, pilates 2 times a week), what with muscles screaming out for more protein and carbs!

Anyhoo, since I had some chickpea-but-actually-black-eyed-beans cutlets that I had made earlier and frozen defrosting in the fridge, and no sauerkraut, I thought I'd got the parmigiana route.

And it was good. And it was quick.

As mentioned above, chickpea-but-actually-black-eyed-beans cutlets (from Veganomicon) had been made in bulk a couple of weeks ago, and frozen in one serve lots. They had been defrosted overnight, and then put into a baking dish with a little olive oil and baked at 200 degrees celcius. I bought some vegan organic plain pasta sauce, which I spooned over the cutlets when they had cooked for about 40 minutes (turned once) and are firm and crispy. The cheez sauce I made from pinto beans, lots of nooch, garlic powder, onion powder, lemon juice, oat milk and seasoning salt - put 'em all in a bowl and whizzed the heck out of them with a hand blender. That went on top of the cutlets at the same time as the pasta sauce.

All back into the oven for another 20 minutes or so. Then stacked on a plate with baby cos that's been tossed with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Then nomnomnomed....


Monday, January 12, 2009

Pure Vegetarian - Vegan Cooking classes

It's that time of year again! I'm running classes again in March - this time for 2 consecutive Saturdays, from 10.00am to 4.30pm. I'm planning lots of fun stuff - given the length of the days, there'll be lunch dishes, afternoon tea, and there's always food to take home and enjoy the next day!

I tend to throw a lot of recipes at people who attend the classes - I'm in the midst of planning this next lot of recipes, and I'm thinking somewhere around 15 or more recipes per day. I use mostly organic ingredients, aim for some gluten and soy free dishes, and avoid using highly processed meat and dairy substitutes - instead we'll make dishes with nutritional yeast and make seitan from scratch.

I like to split up the day - we'll have a sit down lunch, and probably a sit down afternoon tea as well. It's a great way to socialise and learn more about the vegan lifestyle. I love love love running these classes, and they've been falling off attendance wise a little in the last 6 months, and I would be incredibly saddened if the college decided to cancel them.

So! Tell your friends, tell yourself, bring your family and come along for lots of great food, reams of information, and the opportunity to meet new folks who are interested in veganism - about 80% of my students are not vegan, so it's not a requirement to be vegan to come along!


When: Saturdays March 7 and March 14, from 10am to 4.30pm.
Where: Leichhardt Campus of the Sydney Community College
How much: $229 in total, including ingredients
How do you enrol? Go to the Sydney Community College website here!

Hope to see some of you there!

Interview and Review Roundup

Just a quick post with some links to interviews I've done in support of Vegan Indulgence, and reviews of said book. It's been an interesting ride, with mostly positive responses, for which I am greatly thankful. Putting recipes on a blog is scary enough, putting out a book is terrifying and incredibly rewarding.

A scan of the review from Vegan Voice - I was really happy to be reviewed (predominantly positively) in this magazine, which I have enjoyed for years.

I recently did a wide ranging, very fun interview with abolitionist-online, and you can find it online now!

A wonderful review from Veg World, which I have been meaning to post since it came out in August, and which humbles me with its' passionate praise.

The juggernaut has slowed, and it's been nothing but a joy. I hope that everyone who has bought my book has found at least one recipe that they enjoy - hopefully more!!

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Refried Beans

So, one of my goals for 2009 (and into the future) is to make more foodstuffs for myself, rather than buying them. This will eventually include jam, relish, chutney, pickles, non-dairy milk and tofu, but for the moment I've settled for making refried beans from scratch.

ZB's Totally Inauthentic but Tasty Refried Beans

  • 2 1/2 cups cooked pinto bean, mashed (leave some whole ones for texture)
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 chipotle chilli in adobo sauce, minced
  • 2 small tomatoes, diced
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1/2 tablespoon Braggs
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast (optional - I just put it into everything these days!)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • olive oil

Heat olive oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Saute onion in olive oil until translucent, and add the chipotle and adobo sauce and cook, stirring, for a couple of minutes. Add the diced tomatoes, and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add the smoked paprika, coriander and cumin, and cook off for 30 seconds.

Pour in 1/3 cup water and mix well. Simmer until the tomato has begun to soften, about 5 minutes, and add the remaining 2/3 cup water and Braggs. Mash the softened tomato and continue simmering.

Add the mashed pinto beans, bit by bit, and the nutritional yeast, and stir well into the tomato mixture. Simmer until the mixture is thickened and "dry". About 3 minutes before serving, stir through the minced garlic.

I served the refried beans over ridiculously perfect roasted potatoes, topped with tomato, olives and guacamole, with a side of baby spinach and rocket dressed with balsamic vinegar and linseed oil.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Sandwichy Goodness, Risoni Risotto, Scrumptious Salad

More photos and lack of recipes...Many greens have been my pleasure to consume recently!

Sandwich of Doom

Sunflower seed sourdough loaf, veggie burger (really not very good, unfortunately), beetroot and wasabi dip, squooshed avocado, mushroom, tomato, spinach, rocket and a dressing made of linseed oil and balsamic vinegar. I had this sandwich three lunches in a row, and kind of wish I had one now. Ridiculously tastingly good.

Risoni Risotto

The best way for me to eat risotto these days. Risoni gives the bite and creaminess of traditional risotto, and allows me to indulge in one of my favourite foods.

This one was a mushroom, lemon and greens risotto. Lemon zest, leek and garlic sauteed in olive oil, with fresh shiitake and button mushrooms, add the risoni and cook with vege stock as per standard risotto. Lemon juice and roughly chopped greens added just before serving. Yum!

Rice and Chickpea Salad

I made red kidney bean curry (m'eh) and spiced rice for dinner last night. I had some rice left over, and came up with this ridiculously sexy and tasty post-workout uber-salad.

Rice, chickpeas, diced tomato, kalamata olives, coriander, mint, rocket and spinach, dressed with a dressing of flaxseed oil, lemon juice, Braggs, umesu and nutritional yeast. ZEDOMG!!1!1 So incredibly tasty and good. Highly recommended that you give it a go.

I'm getting into the summer style of eating again, which is good. Lots of vegies, lots of lemon juice (well, that's not anything new, I love my lemon juice!), lots of legumes. Food is good.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

naked espresso

So, there's a not-so-new (as in, opened three months ago and I've taken a while to get there!) all vegan weekend breakfast place sharing the premises of Basil Pizza in Newtown. The owner is vegan, the equipment for making breakfast has all been purchased new, the coffee machine is all vegan (Bonsoy only), there are gluten free options offered as well, and it's got a lovely range of breakfast offerings, laid back but friendly service, and I highly recommend going along one morning to support this great vegan business!!

I went there for the second time this morning, and actually remembered to take photos this time!

My friend Phil got the Organic Buckwheat Pancakes, which are served with strawberries and banana and pure organic maple syrup. Numtious!

My friend Neibi got "The Morning After" Giant Fry Up, with sausages, hashbrowns, "bacon-style" rashers, tomato, mushrooms, spinach, baked beans, sourdough toast. So big it needed two photos, and I still didn't get everything into shot!!

I got the Scrambled Tofu, lightly curry flavoured, with baked beans, fried tomato, hashbrown and sourdough toast.

The food is hearty comfort food, made with love and vegan passion. The premises are open only on the weekend, from 9am to 1pm.

naked espresso
126 King Street
Newtown (near Missendon Road)
Tel: 95194880

Friday, January 02, 2009

Laksa fun

Happy New Year, everyone! I hope everyone had a marvellous NYE. I spent it in a fabulous Japanese restaurant (with only one non-vegan hiccup, huzzah!) eating wonderful food and drinking chuhai and having a great time with two of my closest friends. Followed by really good champagne, fireworks on the telly, and home by 1am.

My New Year's resolutions, such as they are (I try to give myself achievable goals, rather than fixed-in-stone "resolutions"), include getting back into the low GI lifestyle. To that end, I capped off a high protein day yesterday (scrambled tofu for breakfast, tofu/vegie patties on bread with lots o' salad for lunch) with a gorgeous vegetable heavy laksa, and lots of it!!

I don't really have a recipe, more a series of suggestions (as with my scrambled tofu).

As a base, I use the vegan tom yum paste that I buy in giant jars from Vegan's Choice - I have seen it in other Asian groceries. Vegan's Choice also carry a laksa paste, but I'm hooked on the tom yum paste - very sharp and lemony! I tend to add to the base paste - last night I added kecap manis, umesu and Braggs.

If you can't get the tom yum/laksa paste, there are some tinned curry pastes available in supermarkets that can be used. Maesri's red curry paste is accidentally vegan, and gives the hot flavour and red colour you want from a laksa. You need some tamarind paste to go with this red curry paste, to give the sharp and sour, and some palm or dark brown sugar.

Cook off the paste without oil (there's more than enough in it!) in a medium saucepan over a medium heat. When sizzling, add the extra flavours - tamarind, sugar, kecap manis etc - and cook off. Pour in a half/half mixture of coconut milk and water and simmer.

I love lots of vegies in my laksa. Last night I had: carrots; broccoli; button mushrooms; shiitake mushrooms; red capsicum; snowpeas; bok choy; bean sprouts; coriander; mint and spring onions.

I put the carrots, broccoli and both types of mushrooms in the simmering soup, and then put mung bean noodles in a bowl and covered with boiling water. When the noodles were ready - clear and expanded - I put them in the bottom of my serving bowl and then topped them with the red capsicum and bok choy, and ladled over the hot soup and vegetables. All of this goodness is then crowned with a handful of bean sprouts and the coriander, mint and spring onions, with lemon wedges on the side of the bowl for added citrus tang. (Excuse the over-expressive descriptions, I've been watching a Nigella Lawson marathon on Lifestyle Food. She does go on, doesn't she?)

So. Yes. Not so much a suggestion as a sort of recipe. I love laksa, and I'm always very happy and energised whenever I eat a big bowl that I've made.