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!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Photoless recipes

I have had a couple of days of good cookings, but unfortunately a camera suffering from lack o' batteries. However, much as I love the food pornage, you don't need that all of the time when the recipes are tasty!!

So, last night I made a yummy Indian inspired curry, using kale for a supernutritionally boosted saag sauce. I'm calling it Gobi Muttar Saag, which I think is close enough to correct.

Gobi Mutter Saag

  • 1 small onion
  • 1 inch piece of ginger
  • 1 large red chilli
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 6 whole cardamom pods
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 large cauliflower, cut into bite size florets
  • 1 cup peas
  • 3 cups (about 1 medium bunch) young kale
  • 1/2 flaked almonds
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons Nuttelex

Finely chop the onion, ginger, chilli and garlic. Set to one side.

Steam the kale until bright green, then put into a food processor with flaked almonds, oil, 1/2 cup water and salt, and process until as smooth as possible.

Steam the cauliflower and set to one side.

Melt the Nuttelex in a frying pan over medium high heat. Saute the onion, ginger, chilli, garlic and cardamom pods until fragrant and the onion is softened. Add the peas and cauliflower and toss through. Add the ground coriander, ground cumin and cinnamon, and cook off for 30 seconds.

Stir together and add the kale and almond mixture to the pan, along with the other 1/2 cup water.

Cook until the liquid has reduced, leaving a thick bright green sauce.

I served this over a protein rich quinoa pilaf (1 cup quinoa cooked in a rice cooker with 2 cups vegetable stock, 6 cardamom pods and a cinnamon stick snapped in two). Was fabulously delicious and nutritious!!


I have very fond memories of my mother's cooking - non vegan, of course, but damn fine. She taught me great food skills and started my interest in food and cookery from my helping her in the kitchen (and then taking over the kitchen, because I'm a kitchen control freak). I occasionally make a version of the green curry she used to make, and it's a lifetime dream of mine to veganise her salmon cakes that we used to have with steamed broccoli and cheesy sauce.

But my favourite comfort food that she taught me to make was cheesy tuna pasta bake. And tonight, for the first time since becoming veg*n, I found myself inspired to veganise it. And I did so quite successfully!! This recipe needs a few tweaks, but I am really happy with it, and it definitely hit all of the comfort food/mum cooking spots I was needing to have hit. So, without further ado:

Not My Mum's Tuna Bake, But Damned Close!!

  • 1 1/2 cups grated tempeh
  • 1/2 cup sesame seeds
  • 1/2 sheet nori
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried dill
  • 2 tablespoons soy Dijonnaise (or soy mayo with 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard)
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Braggs
  • 1 tablespoon umesu
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons Nuttelex
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 4 tablespoons barley flour
  • 1 1/2 cups hot vegetable stock
  • 1 cup soy milk
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons barley miso
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped parsley
  • 350g vegeroni pasta shells

Grind the nori sheet and sesame seeds together until sesame seeds are powdery and the nori sheet is in small pieces.

Mix the grated tempeh, sesame seeds/nori mixture, paprika, white pepper, salt and dill in a large bowl. In a small bowl, whisk the Dijonnaise, lemon juice, Braggs, umesu and water together. Pour into and mix with the tempeh. Set to one side.

Put the vegeroni pasta shells on to cook as per the ingredients on the packet. When cooked, drain and refresh with cold water. Set to one side.

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celcius.

Melt the Nuttelex in a medium sized saucepan over a medium heat. Saute the onion until translucent and softened. Add the barley flour and stir to form a roux, and cook off for a minute.

Stir in the hot stock a little at a time, stirring continuously to ensure that there are no lumps. When the stock is finished, use the soy milk. When the sauce is smooth and coats the back of a spoon, whisk in the barley miso.

Add the tempeh mixture to the white sauce, mix through thoroughly and cook for a couple of minutes. Mix the drained pasta into the tempeh/white sauce, and add the chopped parsley. Pour into a casserole dish and smooth the top, then dap the top with little knobs of Nuttelex.

Bake for about 30 minutes, until the top is browned and bubbly.

Ensure that you have people to share this with, and a side salad, otherwise there could be extreme overeating taking place...

Notes on this recipe - I used to hatehatehate parsley when I was a kid, and now the parsley flavour totally made this dish for me. Also, you could make the white sauce with nooch instead, but I had read somewhere that miso adds a "cheezy" flavour and so wanted to try it, and probably will continue to use it in white sauces for casseroles as it really does add a certain somethin' somethin' in the background flavour. And lastly, I could say with this recipe that I am truly over my tempeh hatin' ways, as I really enjoyed the tempeh flavour in this dish.

...Though, having said that, I do wonder if I could make this with chickpeas...Hmmmm...

And now, time for bed, methinks! Good night to all, and to all a good night!

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

May the Fourth (be with you) Birthday Dinner

My friend Phil's birthday is May the Fourth, and I've always remembered it due to the puntastic value of that date. I love how everyone now seems to refer to it as Star Wars Day, which is fun.

So my gift to Phil was dinner and some Castle watching, and I'm happy to say that the meal was really tasty good times.

Phil's girlfriend Neibi brought over some marvellous 1970s style placemats (as well as dressing as Princess Leia, which was brilliant - less brilliant was my being Anakin Skywalker due to my sticky-uppy blonde hair), balloons, pink glasses and orange straws in a fabby straw dispenser.

Neibi provided food creation support, including the smearing duty for the incredibly tasty roasted garlic pesto bread, which I made using great wodges of basil from my garden!!

Roasted Garlic Basil Bread
  • 1 1/2 heads roasted garlic (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 cup firmly packed fresh basil
  • 1 teaspoon Herbamare seasoning salt
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 cup Nuttelex
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
Process all of the ingredients in a food processor until the basil is well chopped and the rest of the ingredients are smooth.

We had a loaf of ciabatta given to us by Charles at naked espresso, and I sliced it on the diagonal and Neibi smeared the slices with the mixture.

The oven was preheated to 200 degrees Celcius, and I put the slices under the grill until the mixture was melted and the bread was golden.

Dee-freaking-licious. I'm telling you. Give it a good Aussie bash, your tastebuds will thank you!

The bread was a side dish to the main event - classic lasagne. Here is the lasagne, just before slicing and rampant consuming, posing with the side salad and Phil's birthday cake. And, of course, the fabulous table decorations.

Classic Lasagne

  • 1 packet tempeh (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 9 shiitake mushrooms (fresh are fine, but dried and rehydrated have a great bite)
  • 2 small beetroot
  • 1 1/2 heads roasted garlic (about 1/2 cups)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cans tomatoes (about 4 cups)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon chilli flakes
  • 1/2 tablespoon onion flakes
  • 1/4 cup dried Italian herbs
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce
  • 1/4 cup Braggs
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons BBQ sauce or tomato paste
White Cheezy Bechamel
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup soymilk
  • 3 tablespoons plain flour
  • 3/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1/4 Nuttelex
  • 1 teaspoon Herbamare seasoning salt
1 packet no cook lasagne sheets


Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celcius.


Chop the tempeh, shiitake mushrooms and peeled beetroot in a food processor until finely chopped. Pour into a bowl and add the mashed roasted garlic.

Heat olive oil in a deep frying pan over a medium high heat, and add the tempeh mixture. Saute for about 5 minutes, then add the garlic powder, onion flakes, chilli flakes and Italian herbs, and toss through for a minute. Pour in the lemon juice, hot sauce, Braggs and BBQ sauce/tomato paste and stir through well. Pour in the tomatoes and water, and mix thoroughly. Turn the heat to medium and simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 30 minutes, or until thickened and rich. Take off the heat.

White Cheezy Bechamel

Melt the Nuttelex in a saucepan over a medium high heat. Cook the flour in the Nuttelex, then add the garlic powder, salt and nutritional yeast to form a paste. Slowly add the hot stock, stirring in between every addition of stock to form a smooth paste and then sauce, and finish with the soymilk.

Putting it all together

Pour a 1/2 cup of the filling onto the base of a casserole dish, and layer with lasagne sheets. Alternate filling, lasagne sheets and bechamel, finishing with lasagne sheets and bechamel on top.

Place in the oven and bake for 20 to 30 minutes, or until a knife finds no resistance in the pasta sheets.

Let sit for about 10 minutes before serving, this will make it firmer and easier to slice and serve.


Phil and Neibi, about to enjoy their meal:

Close up of Phil's requested birthday cake - ginger cake with lemony icing.

It was a wonderful night. I really enjoy making food for other folks, and it was great to celebrate Phil's birthday with him and Neibi, two folks who I not only adore and enjoy spending time with, but who I love a great deal.

Monday, May 04, 2009

Perfect Quiche

I spent most of a week planning and thinking about and tinkering with a quiche recipe in my head, and I finally made it and ate it with great relish and enjoyment on Friday night.

I've posted about my quiche making efforts before, but this has to be my favourite quiche iteration - simple, tasty, very much more-ish.

I made the base from the Cheezy Quacker recipe from have cake will travel, using a mixture of amaranth and barley flours. It's such a good base for quiche.

And with that, here's the rest of the recipe:

Green Quiche

Preheat the oven to 150 degrees Celcius. Make the Cheezy Quacker crust as per the above recipe.

Filling Part 1
  • 1 head roasted garlic (about 1/3 cup)
  • 2 packets firm silken tofu (about 2 cups)
  • 3/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon Herbamare seasoning salt
  • 2 tablespoons hot sauce
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup soymilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon umesu
  • 1 tablespoon onion flakes
Place all of the ingredients into a food processor and process until very smooth.

Filling Part 2
  • 2 cups, firmly packed, rocket
  • 2 cups, firmly packed, baby spinach
  • 1/2 cup, firmly packed, fresh basil leaves
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
Place all of the ingredients into a food processor and process until chopped.

Mix the greens into the tofu mixture well.

Pour into the Cheezy Quacker shell and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the centre is slightly wobbly. Turn off the oven and let the quiche cool in the oven for 10 minutes before serving.

Then nom. Nom. Nom. And nom some more.