Easy veggie stew and two ingredients flat bread

IMG_6316.JPGI love anything that begin with two ingredients. But is it always good? In this case yes! I saw this flat bread recipe on Buzzfeed and I was curious would it work. It turned really well and it was good even on the next morning.

The veggie stew is simple and flavorful- probably my favorite childhood dish. It is purely vegan, but goes just perfect with a spoon of plain yogurt or white feta type cheese. Oh, did I mentioned it is also one pot made-yes that easy. Give it a go!

 

INGREDIENTS: for 4 portions

For the stew:

  • 2 big potatoes
  • 2 bell peppers (choose your color)
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 2 carrots
  • 3-4 garlic cloves
  • 1 can tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp sweet paprika
  • 1 tsp fenugreek powder
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 3-4 tbsp oil
  • fresh parsley to serve

For the flat bread:

  • 1 cup yogurt
  • 3-4 cups white flour (use more if needed)

PREPARATION:

  1. Chop your veggies into big chunks
  2. Saute the veggies with oil and spices for 2-3 minutes
  3. Add the tomatoes and 4 cups water.
  4. Cook until it thickens and everything is nicely cooked through
  5. Serve with freshly chopped parsley
  6. In a big bowl mix yogurt and flour until you get nice soft dough.
  7. Roll small balls into flat bread
  8. Bake on a griddle pan for 3-4 minutes on each side (or until visibly cooked)

 

Fishcakes with mayo and Worcestershire dip

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Living with a man who hate all seafood isn`t easy. Though he loves fish and chips (as per him this doesn`t taste fishy) I can`t let him eat anything else. I made him eat sushi when we first met, and he is now converted tuna lover- BIG deal! This fishcakes were another attempt and hopefully big success.

The challenge here was the type of fish I can use as Tom would not eat salmon as it`s too fishy, crab is also off the list. I was ready to opt for the cod, but there wasn`t any at the supermarket, so what are my options?! Nile Perch! I have no idea about this fish, not sure if I ever tried it myself,but the meat looked white and very similar to the cod, so I decided to take the risk.

It was a winner! The meat wasn`t fishy at all, in fact it was with really  pleasant creamy taste. Mixed with potatoes, and deep fried I was almost certain Tom will not only eat it but also like it. I decided to serve it with simple mayo and Worcestershire dip and some store bought spicy pineapple sauce.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 400g Nile perch fillet (or any other fish you like)
  • 3 medium potatoes
  • 1 small onion finely chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper finely chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup sweet corn- I used fresh from the cob, but you can use from a can
  • handful chopped parsley
  • black pepper and salt
  • 1 tsp sweet paprika
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • oil for frying
  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

PREPARATION:

  1. Boil the potatoes, peel and mash them with a fork
  2. Chop the fish fillet into small chunks
  3. In a big bowl mix potatoes, fish, onion, peppers, parsley and salt and pepper. Add the egg and mix well using a spoon or even with hands
  4. Preheat your oil in a non stick pan
  5. Take some fishcake mixture and form a patties, dust in little bit of flour and fry until golden- 2 minutes on each side.
  6. Mix the mayo and Worcestershire and serve with the fishcakes

Freekeh pilaf with pine nuts, cauliflower and tahini sauce

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I am not sure from where to start with this recipe. So much goodness for the body and soul 🙂 This could easily be your new favorite for the meatless Mondays.

Let`s start with what is freekeh?!

In short, freekeh is wheat.  It is actually young green wheat that has been toasted and cracked. It`s healthy whole grain food, much like bulgur.

 

If you don`t have it in the shops near you I recommend substituting it with farro or barley, or even couscous and quinoa (although with the last two I will miss the texture that freekeh has).

The whole meal might seems complicated, but it is actually just cooked separated and then assembled to serve.

INGREDIENTS:

Roasted cauliflower

  • 1 large, tightly packed head of cauliflower, sliced into bite-sized florets
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Freekeh pilaf

  • 2-3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1 ¼ cups  freekeh
  • 1 tbsp  harissa paste
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
  • salt
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp sweet paprpika
  • 3 cups  vegetable stock and/or water

Garlicky tahini sauce

  • 1/3 cup tahini
  • 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
  • Generous pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup yougurt
  • salt and pepper

Garnishes

  • Handful fresh parsley
  • Crumbled feta

PREPARATION:

  1. Toss the cauliflower in oil, salt and pepper. Roast for 30 to 35 minutes, tossing halfway, until the florets are deeply golden on the edges.
  2. To cook the pilaf: Warm 1 tablespoon olive oil in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Add the raisins, pine nuts and cook for about 3 minutes. Add the freekeh and sauté for 2 minutes, then add the garlic, cumin, harissa,paprika and salt, and sauté for 1 more minute. Add vegetable broth, raise the heat and bring the mixture a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover and cook, stirring occasionally and reducing heat as necessary to maintain a gentle simmer, until freekeh is tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Drain off any excess liquid, cover and set aside for 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. To make the dressing: In a bowl, stir together the tahini, yogurt, lemon juice, garlic and red pepper flakes. Whisk  until you have a smooth, blended tahini sauce. Season generously with salt  and black pepper, to taste.
  4. To assemble the individual dishes: Start with a bed of cooked freekeh and top with roasted cauliflower. Drizzle tahini sauce generously over the dish and then top with a sprinkling of chopped parsley and crumbled feta , raisins and sesame seeds.

Quesadillas with pumpkin, beans and jalapeno hummus

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This recipe is truly inspired by the amount of jalapeno hummus I made the other day. It`s so good that I even packed it in a small lunch box with some cucumbers, falafels and pita bread and took it with me to the office. We don`t waste food at home, so I was looking for the best way to include the leftover hummus and still keep it as the star of the dish. And this is how I came up with the idea of this veggie quesadillas.

Initially I was planning to make them with sweet potato, but they were out of stock in the supermarket (weird I know). So I had to act quick and decide how to substitute. Luckily for me I had a good amount of roasted pumpkin in the fridge waiting to be cooked. And it was easy from there on.

Adding chopped red onion and fresh coriander gave it the kick I was looking for. I served it with extra hummus and some BBQ sauce.

INGREDIENTS: (It makes 3 big quesadillas)

  • 6 big tortillas
  • 1 cup roasted pumpkin
  • 1 can red kidney beans
  • handful fresh coriander, chopped
  • 1 small red onion, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cup jalapeno hummus
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • olive oil to brush your pan

PREPARATION:

  1. Preheat a small pan with a tbsp of olive oil. Add the pumpkin, beans and spices. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Set aside
  2. Preheat a big pan and brush with little bit of olive oil.
  3. Take one tortilla and spread hummus on it. Then spread 2-3 tbsp pumpkin and beans, top with chopped onion and parsley and cover with another tortilla also with hummus.
  4. Place in the pan and cook for a minute on each side.
  5. Once ready, cut in the middle and then into four squares from each side.

 

 

Falafel and jalapeno hummus

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In the Middle East we love falafel and hummus! I mean- what is not to love?! There are so many recipe out there, that one can get easily confused what exactly is an authentic falafel. But instead of arguing what is authentic and what isn`t you can just enjoy this recipe! To me this is as closer as you can get to the restaurant falafel in Dubai. To make it even more exciting I made this jalapeno hummus that is too good to be true.

I made two versions of the falafel- one baked for my toddler and another one fried for us. Without a doubt the fried is much better and crispier.

NOTE: Before I go to the recipe I want to point few things that I crucial  for the success of the falafals. First and foremost do not attempt of making this with canned chickpeas. It just won`t work and chances are you will get flat and mushy pancakes instead. Trust me I tried it before and that`s what I got. Instead of the canned use dry chickpeas instead. And here is the moment that put me off, because the dry one need to soak in water overnight. Thanks to a quick internet research I found an easy way to skip that and cut your time to only 1 hour. How I made it. check the notes below:

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INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups soaked chickpeas ( do not try this recipe with canned one)
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 cup fresh coriander, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • salt and pepper to taste

PREPARATION: 

  1. Soak your chickpeas in water overnight. If you are inpatient like me then just put the chickpeas into a a pot or dutch oven, cover with 4 cm water and boil for 5 minutes. Keep it covered for another 50-60 minutes. It is now ready to use!
  2. In a food processor, combine the soaked and drained chickpeas, onion, parsley, coriander, garlic, cumin, cinnamon, salt and pepper. Process until smooth.
  3. Using your hands, scoop out about 2 tablespoons of the mixture at a time. Shape the falafel into small patties.
  4. Place each falafel in hot oil and fry until golden.

 

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For the hummus I have to admit my blender let me down a bit and I just couldn`t reach the extra smoothness of hummus as we know it. However the taste was just perfect even with the little chunks in it 🙂

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 cups soaked chickpeas or canned if you want (then use about 2 cans)
  • 1 bunch parsley
  • 2 jalapenos stems removed
  • 2 lemons juiced
  • 2-4  tbsp olive oil
  • 1 garlic cloves
  • 6 tbsp tahini
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 cup water to blend easily (this is optional and may vary!)
PREPARATION:
  1. In a food processor , blend all of the coriander, jalapeno, garlic, olive oil, tahini and lemon juice to a puree. Add the  salt and the chickpeas   and continue to blend until this is a smooth paste .
  2. If it gets too thick add water to thin. Season to taste.

Mac and very delicious sauce a.k.a Vegan Mac and Cheese

I bet vegans out there get very excited when they find good recipe for cheese. We are not vegans at home, but I like to explore new things, and now I started to cook vegan for dinner, which you can see from my last posts. We tried Veggie chili, the famous “pulled pork” sandwiches  and the super tasty coconut curry.

I was curious to try some “cheesy” recipe and going back to different websites I found this recipe from Cookie and Kate.

Despite what the comments are saying this doesn`t taste like cheese. Maybe to some extend it can remind you of it by the texture, but it`s not like the real cheese. That said I want to tell you as well how delicious this recipe was. Me and Tom finished it in no time and it was rather satisfying. We agreed it can`t be called Mac and Cheese, but Mac and very delicious sauce 🙂 unnamed (1)

Ingredients

  • 4 cups elbow pasta
  • 3 tbsp olive oil 
  • 1 small onion, chopped 
  • 2 small white potatoes, shredded 
  • 1 glove garlic, minced 
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard powder
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tsp red paprika
  • 1/2 cup cashew nuts (I used roasted) 
  • 1 cup water, more as necessary
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons white vinegar 
  • one small fresh jalapeno for serving (optional)

Preparation 

  1. Boil the pasta in salted water
  2. Saute the onions, garlic, potato and spices for 3-4 minutes.
  3. Add the cashew nuts and water and cook until cooked through (about 5-8 minutes). Add more water if necessary.
  4. Blend until smooth and add the nutritional yeast and vinegar. Blend again. Add 4-5 tbsp water if necessary.
  5. Mix the pasta with the sauce and top with fresh jalapeno.

Veggie Chili

When I first told Tom we are having veggie chili for dinner he laughed! Can you blame him?Chili is meat! Well not this one. This recipe is vegan, but so rich and flavorful, we had to fill our plates twice. I choose to top with avocado, coriander and tortilla chips, but you can go ahead with cream and cheese if that`t what you love.

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Original recipe from Cookie+Kate

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 medium red onion, chopped
  • 1 large red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped
  • salt to taste
  • black pepper to taste
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  •  1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes
  • 2 cans kidney beans
  • 2 cups vegetable broth (use water if you don`t have)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp BBQ sauce
  • To serve: chopped coriander, sliced avocado and tortilla chips

Preparation

  1. Saute all the veggies together with the spices. Cook until soft and translucent
  2. Add the tomatoes and veggie stock (or water). Cook for 3-4 minutes
  3. Add the beans and cook for another 30 minutes. Add more water if needed.
  4. Serve topped with avocado, coriander and tortilla chips