Monday, 25 April 2016

Vegan Red Thai Curry



Before I turned plant based, I never even thought of making my own Thai curry paste. I used to buy what ever was available in the market. But that has changed, for good.  Even if you are not vegan or vegetarian, try and make your own curry paste once and you won't buy it from the supermarket ever again. It is really quick & easy to make and it tastes amazing and is so much better for you.

On a wet rainy spring evening, this warming red curry would be an ideal dinner choice and to make this you will need the following ingredients-

For paste- 
4 small tomatoes or 2 big ones
Half an onion or 1 small one (chopped)
A piece of ginger
2 teaspoons galangal 
2 stalks lemon grass
A good glug of soya sauce
1 teaspoon agave nectar 
Juice of 1 lime 
Cumin powder
Coriander (fresh or powder)
Chilli or chilli flakes or powder 
1/4 cup coconut milk 
1/2 red pepper 
Salt
Pepper

For curry-
2 carrots chopped
1/4 of a broccoli (florets)
1/4 of a cauliflower (florets)
1/2 red pepper chopped 

Blend all the ingredients into a smooth paste. In a pan heat some extra virgin olive oil and then add the remaining half of your chopped onion into the pan. After sweating the chopped onion for a few minutes, pour in your paste. Let it cook for 5 minutes or so and then add all your vegetables. I used carrots, broccoli, cauliflower and the remaining 1/2 of my red pepper. Let the vegetables cook and after 5-7 minutes of cooking add in a cup of coconut milk. Let this cook for 10 minutes and then add another cup.  Check for seasoning, add more if you think it needs a bit more. I usually go in with a tiny bit more of salt, pepper & chilli! Your curry should be ready in maximum 40 minutes and this really depends on how crunchy you like your veggies!

Serve with steamed rice and lots of coriander and a wedge on lime on the side. 

Let me know if you get to try this. See you next time xx


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Tuesday, 19 April 2016

Chocolate Chia Pudding






What you will need- 
2 tablespoons chia seeds 
1/2 cup almond milk 
1 table spoon cacao powder 
A pinch of cinnamon 
Maple or agave syrup

(These quantities will fill two small Kilner jars. The jars are much smaller in real life but it's not very obvious here as this shot is a close one.)

In a bowl, throw in all ingredients and whisk for a couple of minutes until everything is blended well together. Let this settle for at least 2-3 hours or overnight. Serve in a small glass jar with fruit of your choice on top! I went for a raspberry and shredded coconut as my toppings.

Chia pudding serves up as a fabulous clean dessert or an afternoon pick me up or even an alternate to regular breakfast items. Plus the fact that it takes literally minutes to make is an added bonus.

Chia seeds are a rich source of calcium, protein and omega 3 fatty acids. They also have many other health benefits such as improving heart health & combating diabetes to name a few. If you have or are thinking of going vegan, you should most definitely add chia seeds into your diet. And I think it cannot get better than eating chia seeds in pudding form!

If you don't fancy the jelly-like texture of chia seeds, you could blend this into a smooth paste in your blender.

Let me know if you get to try this? See you next time. Enjoy x  

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Friday, 8 April 2016

Acai Berry Bowl




I am rather late to hop on the acai berry bandwagon. But I am glad I did! An acai berry bowl is not only very very instagrammable (Priorities, people!), it also makes a great alternate to porridge or almond butter on toast for breakfast. And it tastes pretty good too!

For those of you who don't know, with it's home in the Amazon of South America, acai berry is a reddish purple fruit that grows on the acai palm tree and it is pronounced as 'asa-heee'. Acai berry is loaded with anti-oxidants and it supposedly (allegedly) aids weight loss. 

Selecting your acai berry brand can be a daunting task and there are loads of brands in the market. Research points to opting for organic frozen acai berry pulp, but  I made my purchase online and could not find a pulp option; so I got a powder version instead. For anyone who is interested, I bought the Seven Hills Acai Berry Powder. With some extra blending time, my acai berry concoction turned out to be pretty smooth, contrary to some online reviews stating their smoothies/ yogurts grainy. 

What you will need- 
1 table spoon acai berry powder 
1 frozen banana (Freeze a peeled banana in an air tight box. Don't make the mistake of freezing it skin-on, it's a pain to peel it once frozen)
A handful of frozen berries 
Half a cup of almond milk 
Shredded coconut 
Berries & banana for toppings

Throw in the frozen banana and berries in your blender. Add acai berry powder to it and almond milk and whiz. If you like your acai berry to be of a yogurt consistency, use milk sparingly. If you prefer a smoothie type consistency add a tad bit more almond milk.

Pour the smoothie/yogurt in a bowl, select your favourite fruits as toppings and decorate your acai berry bowl. Have some fun with this, bring your inner artist to life. I went for raspberries, strawberries, blueberries & shredded coconut! Oh my word, this was really delicious and I gobbled it up in rather uncivilised way! Sorry, not sorry :D

If you make your acai berry bowl, let me know what toppings you went for? 

See you next time xx 


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