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Easy recipes from Apple Tree

Tag: vegan

Onion Rings

The best side with Daddy Burgers. You will need:

  • Large onion, sliced into 1cm slices and rings separated (1 onion = 2 servings)
  • Fizzy water
  • Self-raising flour
  • Oil for deep frying

Make a batter with the flour and water, the consistency of double cream. Start with a cup of flour and add water until it looks right. Heat your oil in a saucepan to 180C. Dip onion rings into the batter and deep fry for 2-4 minutes until they look light brown. Drain on kitchen paper, serve with plenty of salt. Salt and deep frying are bad for you but the onion is good so I guess it cancels out.

Butternut squash and lentil dhal

Easy.

  • prepared squash
  • 2 tbs mild curry paste
  • oil
  • seasoning

Put cubes of squash in an oven tray, toss in oil and curry paste and season. Cook in a 200C oven for 30 minutes until soft. Meanwhile…

  • 200g green lentils
  • 600ml vegetable stock

Put in a pan and simmer 40 minutes or in a pressure cooker for 6 minutes.

  • 100g spinach
  • 1 lime, zested and juiced
  • pack of coriander, leaves chopped

Add to the lentils. Add the squash and heat until the spinach has wilted.

  • 1tbs desiccated coconut

Heat in a pan until slightly brown

  • 50 pomegranate seeds

Serve in bowls.  Add pomegranate seeds and coconut on top. Serve with warm naan breads and plain yoghurt.

 

 

 

Sag Aloo

Authentic enough…

  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 large red chilli, halved, de-seeded and finely sliced

Fry gently. Add

  • 500g potato cut into small cubes

Fry some more. add

  • 1 tbsp chopped ginger
  • ½ tsp each black mustard seeds, cumin seeds, turmeric

Fry some more. Add a splash of water and ½ tsp salt, cover and let cook for 10 minutes until soft. Add

  • 250g spinach   leaves

Continue cooking until wilted. Done!

Make your own pitta breads

You might think – for 90p a pack of six in Tesco what’s the point? But these are awesome.

  • 500gm plain flour
  • 4gm dried yeast (half a sachet)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1tsp sugar
  • Glass of warm water 40 deg C

Ideally, use a food processor. If not you may reconsider going to Tesco.

Pour the dry ingredients into the processor. Give it a whizz to aerate the flour. While the motor is running gently and slowly pour in the water. The mix will start to look like crumbs. Very gently add more water a splash at a time until the dough forms a ball. Whizz for another 40 seconds. Now take the dough out and let it rise in a warm place covered in oiled cling film or plastic bag. After about an hour when it has grown by at least 50% it is ready. Pull off a fistful of dough and roll thinly, about 4mm thick. Heat a heavy griddle or frying pan (no oil) , and cook the pittas on the dry pan turning once when the under surface has brown spots. When cooked through from both sides, keep warm in a kitchen towel while you make the rest. This mix makes about 6 large pittas.

Lebanese Pickle

If you buy a kebab from a genuine takeaway or van you will usually be offered (or find) some bright pink pickled vegetable with a nice crunch and a bit of a tang. These are surprisingly easy to make, and go well with your own kebabs at home. You will need some sort of glass jar, I used a Kilner but others are available. Wilco is a surprisingly useful source for these. There are other recipes available on-line. This one does produce good pickles though. Others appear to have more salt and less vinegar. Experiment!

  • 1 large or 2 small turnips, 400-500g total
  • 1 small uncooked beetroot.

Trim off the peel and slice into sticks the size of French fries, or shorter chunkier pieces.

  • 175ml water
  • 175ml distilled vinegar (white)
  • 4 tsp salt
  • 1 chilli stabbed with a knife (optional)
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and left whole.

Mix the pickling ingredients and stir until the salt has dissolved.

Pack a jar with the beets and fill with the liquid. Place in the fridge and check it each day to see the pink tinge grow! The original recipe advised swirling around every few days. After a week it will be ready to eat. Keep it in the fridge and it will last a few weeks I am told. It didn’t last that long here – it was eaten. The Lebanese call these pickles “lift”. Yes, you can see Rudi in the photo.

Real (ish) Tomato Soup

Quick too!

  • 2 sticks celery
  • 1 onion
  • 2 carrots
  • 2 cloves garlic

Chop and sweat in a dash of olive oil for 10 minutes

  • 2 tins good quality tomatoes (that is the -ish bit)
  • 6 proper tomatoes
  • 1 litre vegetable stock (a stock cube is fine)

Simmer 15 minutes

Add a small handful of fresh basil leaves and whizz with a stick blender. Adjust the seasoning and job done. Idea to table in 30 minutes. From a Jamie Oliver recipe. Great with our Irish Soda Bread recipe as you can see in the picture.

Vegan Nut and Tofu Roast

This is pretty simple if you have a food processor. Here are the steps.

  1. Chop an onion finely in a food processor.
  2. Fry in oil gently with two cloves of garlic.
  3. Whizz 4 slices of bread to breadcrumbs – put in a bowl
  4. Whizz 200g cashew nuts to crumbs. Put in bowl.
  5. Whiz 250g plain tofu  and 140ml vegetable stock to a paste. Add to bowl.
  6. Whizz 200g mushrooms to a fine chop and fry in a little oil
  7. Add the onion to your bowl, and mix in with half a teaspoon dried thyme and half a teaspoon dried rosemary
  8. Grease a 2lb loaf tin or equivalent size pie dish and put half the mix in, pressing down.
  9. Add the cooked mushrooms and spread out.
  10. Add the rest of the mix and press down.
  11. Cover with foil and cook in an oven at 180C for one hour.
  12. Allow to rest ten minutes.
  13. Turn out and carve.
  14. Eat hot or cold.

Vegan “sausage” rolls

As a non-vegan, I was surprised to discover that Jus-Roll pastry was vegan. Very useful. (So is Bisto gravy, can you believe that?) Quantities are a bit vague because we made this from leftovers so you may need to tweak a bit.

  • Half a pack of Jus-Roll puff pastry
  • Tin of Borlotti beans (or any beans really), drained
  • salt and pepper
  • Pinch of cumin
  • Small pinch of chilli powder
  • Large spoonful of Vegan Bolognese
  • Tablespoon of vegan milk

Mush the beans with a stick blender, fork, end of a rolling pin or a clean jam jar. Mix with the other ingredients. It should form a stiff paste. Roll out the puff pastry to about 4mm thick. Cut into rectangles about 200mm by 150mm. Spoon a “sausage” up the centre line of each pastry rectangle on the long dimension. Roll the pastry round the filling and glue the join with a bit of water. Roll over so the join is underneath. Place on a greased baking tray. Brush the milk over the top to make a glaze and slash at an angle across the top of the rolls to allow steam to escape. Cook in a pre-heated oven at 200C for 20-25 minutes.

PS if you don’t have any vegan bolognese you could enhanced the mix with some finely chopped and fried onion, and a contrasting type of bean (white or red). You could add more seasoning, garlic and herbs if you prefer.

 

Vegan Bolognese sauce

In my opinion as a meat-eater, this is very nearly as good as the beef version! This makes a batch good for 4 meals at least.

  • 400g dried green lentils
  • I onion, chopped finely
  • 2 carrots, chopped finely
  • 2 celery sticks, chopped finely
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 litres vegetable stock
  • Oil
  • Tin of chopped tomatoes
  • Salt and pepper

First cook the lentils in the stock for 45 minutes. Add more water if it threatens to dry out.

Meanwhile chop the vegetables or if you have one, pulse in a food processor. You need to consistency fine not chunky. Now sweat in a pan with the oil until soft. Add the tinned tomatoes, cooked lentils with their liquid and season. Cook another 20-30 minutes. Now for the clever bit. Use a stick blender or fork to mush half the mix into a paste and stir into the rest of the mix to make a thick gloopy sauce. If it is too dry add stock, if it is too runny, boil it away a bit with the lid off. Real vegans will add yeast powder to the mix.

Serve as a pasta sauce, or make a lasagne. The problem with a vegan lasagne is making the creamy topping. Vegetarians will be fine with a standard bechamel sauce and grated cheese! Vegans will have to improvise with tofu alternatives. Keep some back to use as an ingredient for vegan sausage rolls!

 

Best ever scone recipe from the National Trust

After much searching and much eating we have decided that the scones in the National Trust cafes are the best. Luckily for us they printed the recipe in there member’s magazine. Here it is, and foolproof. This makes 8-10 scones.

Switch your oven on, 200deg C.

  • 450g self-raising flour
  • 115g soft margarine

Whiz in a food processor or do it the hard way and rub into crumbs with your fingers. I have found a blender works well and is less faff too get out and put away (ours lives on the worktop).

  • 85g caster sugar
  • 85g sultanas

Mix in, better to use a bowl because a food processor blade may shred the sultanas

  • 1 egg
  • 150ml milk

Beat your egg and add half the milk. Stir into your scone mix and make a stiff dough. If it is too crumbly add more milk.
Flour your hands and work surface and roll the mix into a large ball. Flatten with your hands to a disc 2cm thick.
Punch out scone shapes with a scone shaper-thing and place on a greased baking tray. Re-roll the off-cuts and you should get 8-10 scones out of it depending on thickness and size of your scone-thing.

  • 1 more egg, beaten

Brush the top of the scones with beaten egg if you like a nice yellow glaze. You could use milk instead but the result is not quite as crusty.
Now bake in the pre-heated oven for 15 minutes. DO NOT OPEN THE DOOR before 15 minutes are up. They should be perfect but if you have boobed with the temperature setting they may need a couple of minutes more.
Best served warm and eaten right then, but they will keep a day or two in a sealed tin.

Vegan version: Use Stork instead of soft margarine (100% vegetable fat), lose the egg and use Alpro milk instead of the egg and milk. Brush with Alpro milk before baking. Turns out very similar but not quite as rich.

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