Spiced Cauliflower Soup

This recipe came from one of our visits to India. 
4 Tbsps coconut oil
1 cauliflower, cut into florets 
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 Tbsp mustard seeds
10 curry leaves
3 onions, chopped
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
750 ml vegetable stock
1 1/2 tsp cider vinegar
3 tsp garam masala
Pinch of salt and pepper to taste
Toasted cumin seeds, to serve
Torn coriander leaves, to serve
Preheat the oven to 200C.
Pour 2 Tbsps of coconut oil onto an oven tray. Toss the cauliflower florets, garam masala and garlic on the tray, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 25 minutes until the cauliflower is golden.
Allow to cool.
Heat the remaining coconut oil in a large saucepan. Add the mustard seeds and curry leaves and cook for 1 minute. Add the onion and cook for 4 minutes until softened. Add garam masala, cayenne and two-thirds of the cauliflower and garlic mix. Cook for 5 minutes. Add the stock and bring to the boil. Simmer for 15 minutes.
Remove from the heat.
Blend until smooth. Stir in the cider vinegar and salt and pepper to taste.
Serves 4 people.
Ladle the soup into four bowls and top with the remainder of the cauliflower florets. sprinkle with the toasted cumin and the coriander leaves.

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Tomato and Bean Pasta

Great for colour and texture.
4 large ripe tomatoes, Peeled
4 tsp olive oil
1 small red onion
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
4 tsp tomato paste
1 tsp brown sugar
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
200g pasta, bow-tie looks good
1 tin of 4 mixed beans, drained and rinsed
4 tsp fresh basil leaves, chopped
4 small basil leaves to decorate
soy yogurt, drizzled to serve
To peel tomatoes: Remove core from the top. Cut 4 slits down the side. Place in a bowl of boiling water for 30 seconds. Remove and place in a bowl of cold water. The skin will peel off easily.
Chop the peeled tomatoes.
Be careful not to mix up the pasta and paste in the instructions!
Place the pasta in a saucepan of boiling salted water. Cook according to instructions on the packet.
Heat the oil in a large frying pan. Add the onion and garlic and cook for 3 minutes until soft.
Add the paste, tomatoes, sugar and vinegar. Simmer for 5 minutes.
Drain the pasta and mix into the sauce with the beans and basil. Heat through and mix well.
Serves 4 
people. Place in individual bowls and drizzle with soy yoghurt and decorate with small basil leaves.


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Caramelised Onion with Noodles

This recipe was sent to me by our friend Peat in Spain. My husband cooked it beautifully.
4 Tbsp oil
3 large onions, peeled and sliced
3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely sliced
1/2 tsp salt
1 red chilli, finely sliced
1 1/2 Lt vegetable stock
2 Tbsp sake, (cooking sake is cheaper or Chinese rice wine or Dry Sherry)
11/2 tsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp brown miso
salt and pepper to taste
200g noodle, vegan noodles ie, Ramen
200g Choi sum or Bok choy, cut into 6 cm pieces
Chilli oil, to serve, (optional)
In a large saucepan heat the oil and add the onions, garlic and salt. Stir to coat with oil and cook for 10 minutes. Reduce the heat and allow to simmer for 30 minutes, stir frequently. The onions will caramelise and breakdown into a brown paste.
Add the chilli and stock to the pan and bring to the boil. Turn the heat down and add the sake, soy sauce and miso, stir well to mix. Taste and add salt and pepper if necessary. Turn the heat off.
Cook the noodles according to the packet instructions.
Cook the Choi sum. Bring the broth back to the boil and drop in the Choi sum. Cook until tender.
Divide the noodles between 4 bowls. Ladle over the broth and divide the greens evenly.
Drizzle over chilli oil if desired.
Serves 4 people.
We added cornflour to the broth to thicken it the next time we made it.

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Garam Masala

I used Garam Masala in the Spiced Cauliflower Soup recipe. It can be bought in the supermarkets but is fun to make yourself and fresher giving a more intense flavour.
3 Tbsps coriander seeds
3 Tbsps cumin seeds
6 cinnamon sticks, broken into small pieces
1 Tbsp cardamon pods
1 Tbsp whole cloves
1 tsp fennel seeds
Toast the spices and seeds in a small frying pan for three minutes. Shake the pan frequently to distribute the seeds.
Allow to cool.
Grind the spices to a fine powder using a pestle and mortar.
Keep in a sealed jar until required.

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Strawberry Salad

We ate this refreshing and colourful salad in Milan, Italy.
1 punnet strawberries
1 pkt rocket
25 g sliced almonds
1 tsp Balsamic vinegar
Wash and dry the rocket and divide between 4 plates.
Wash and quarter the strawberries and place on the rocket.
Sprinkle over the almonds.
Drizzle over the Balsamic vinegar.
Serve. Serves 4 people

A reader has suggested that it tastes good to also drizzle Maple Syrup over the salad.
The bitterness in the rocket and the sweetness in the syrup compliment each other.


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Vegetable Love, Vegan’s Beware.


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Potato Salad with Tomatoes

We ate this filling salad with our lunch in Rome.
4 large potatoes
4 tomatoes, very ripe
1/2 tsp mixed dried herbs
Pinch of chilli flakes
olive oil
Sprig of basil
Peel and boil the potatoes until cooked. Allow to cool. Chop into bite size pieces.
Chop the tomatoes into bite sized pieces collecting and adding the juice.
Add all into a salad bowl. Sprinkle with the herbs and chilli flakes and toss to mix.
Drizzle with the olive oil.
Decorate with the sprig of basil.
Serves 4 people.

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