Author: Vanessa Carpenter

Carrot Apple & Rhubarb Muffins

Makes: 12 muffins

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups/250g rolled oats (gluten free if requiring gluten free recipe) plus extra for sprinkling
  • 1/4 cane sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt/Himalaya salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder’
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 carrots/200g, unpeeled, ends cut off & cut into 3 pieces each
  • 2 stalks rhubarb, ends removed
  • 1 apple, unpeeled, cored
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup or honey
  • 3 eggs
  • Olive oil, coconut oil (spray) or butter for greasing tin

 

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.
  2. Place the oats into the food processor and blitz 1 minute or until flour forms.
  3. Remove oats and place in a large mixing bowl.
  4. Place carrots, rhubarb and apple into food processor and blitz several times, scraping down in between until everything is chopped fairly evenly. I chopped one fruit/veg at a time.
  5. One chopped into little pieces, add carrots, rhubarb, apple and all other ingredients into mixing bowl.
  6. Mix until everything is combined but do not overmix or you will have chewy muffins.
  7. I use an ice cream scoup to fill the greased muffin tins with batter and sprinkle with some extra oats if desired.
  8. Bake in the oven for 20-25 mins or until golden and an inserted skewer comes out clean.
  9. They taste delicious eaten warm or cold!

Beet and cashew dip

Makes: 2 serving bowls of dip

Ingredients:

450 g cooked beets (about 4 small beets)

1 cup unsalted cashews (soak in water overnight and then drain)

¼ cup sunflower seeds (soak in water overnight and then drain)

2.5 tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 tsp salt

2 tbsp olive oil

 

Instructions:

  1. Place cooked beets in a food processor or blender (ex Vitamix) and blend until smooth
  2. Add cashews, sunflower seeds, balsamic vinegar, salt and oil. Mix until smooth. In my Vitamix, it took about 1 minute.
  3. Pour into serving dish and serve with cut up veggies.
  4. Store in fridge in airtight container for up to 3 days

 

Notes:

If using fresh beets, cook them in boiling water and then peel them when soft.

You can halve the recipe if you only want enough for one snack for 6 people.

SHEPHERD’S PIE WITH LENTILS

For 6 people

Ingredients

  • 250g of lentils (any variety)
  • 1 kg of potatoes
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons of coconut oil
  • 200 ml of plant-based milk (I use soja)
  • 1 onion (medium size)
  • 4 large cloves of garlic
  • 250g button mushrooms (or any other variety)
  • 4 big carrots
  • 150g peas (frozen)
  • 1 zucchini
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 150g baby spinach
  • 150g of baby kale (if not in-season, you can add spinach)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon of sage powder
  • 1 teaspoon of oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley

Instructions:

  1. Rinse the lentils and soak them overnight (minimum one hour if you had not planned the meal the day before).
  2. Drain the lentils and pour them into a saucepan with at least 500 ml of water.
  3. Bring to a boil and cook for 15-20 minutes on low heat until lentils are tender. Check your lentils after 15 minutes to avoid overcooking.
  4. Drain.
  5. While your lentils are cooking, peel the potatoes and cut them into small pieces.
  6. In a second saucepan, cook the potatoes for 15-20 minutes in boiling water until tender.
  7. Drain the potatoes and put them back in the pan. Add the milk, salt, pepper, nutmeg, 2 tablespoons of olive oil and use a potato masher to make your mashed potatoes smooth.
  8. Preheat the oven to 180 ° C.
  9. Chop the onion and garlic. Clean the mushrooms and cut them into strips. Peel the carrots and slice them. Cut the zucchini into slices.
  10. Heat 2 tablespoons of coconut oil on low heat in a large saucepan and fry the onion for a few minutes. Add the garlic and mix for 30 seconds. Add the carrots, mushrooms, zucchini and peas and let simmer for 5 minutes.
  11. Wash the spinach and kale. Cut the kale leaves off the hard stem and dispose of the stem. Chop the spinach and kale into large pieces and add them to the saucepan with all of the vegetables. Let the leaves wilt for a few minutes.
  12. Add the lentils, soy sauce and spices (sage, oregano and parsley) and season with salt and pepper. Mix.
  13. Grease a large baking dish. Place the lentil and vegetable mixture in the bottom of the dish and spread the mashed potatoes over top.
  14. Bake for 30 minutes.

 

Tips: This dish can be prepared in advance and warmed up in the oven when you are ready to eat it.

Inspired by “More food2run” by Renata Rehor

Easy and delicious feta tomato dip

Makes: 10 servings

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 3 tomatoes, diced
  • ½ cucumber, diced
  • 4 green onion, thinly sliced
  • 100g feta cheese, crumbled
  • 2 tsp Italian spice mix
  • Crackers to serve

 

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. On a large platter or plate, drizzle olive oil until you have a thin layer on the entire platter or plate.
  2. Add the tomatoes, cucumbers, green onions, feta cheese and spices on top of the olive oil.
  3. Mix gently.
  4. Serve with crackers to scoop up the dip.

 

Note: leftovers are delicious in a salad, as a side dish with chicken or even in a hamburger or veggie burger.

Strawberry banana oatmeal breakfast bake

Makes: 6-8 servings

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 30 minutes

 

INGREDIENTS

Oats

  • 1 cup mashed banana (about 2 large bananas)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 ½ cups almond milk or soya milk
  • 2 tablespoons melted and cooled coconut oil or melted and cooled ghee
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)
  • 2 cups rolled oats, gluten free if desired
  • ½ cup buckwheat flakes (if you don’t have these, add another ½ cup of oats)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup diced strawberries
  • ⅓ cup dark chocolate chips (optional)
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts, almonds or pecans (or a mix of different nuts)

Toppings

  • 2 tbsp ground flax seeds
  • 2 tbsp shredded coconut
  • 2 tbsp chopped walnuts

 

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 180° C. Line with parchment paper or butter a 23 x 23 cm pan (or close enough to this size).
  2. In a large bowl mix together mashed banana, eggs, almond milk, coconut oil and vanilla (if using) until mostly smooth. Next add in rolled oats, baking powder, cinnamon and salt until well combined. Finally, gently fold in strawberries, chocolate chips and nuts.
  3. Pour mixture into prepared pan and bake for 25-35 minutes until edges start to become slightly golden brown.
  4. Serve warm with a tablespoon of almond butter or let cool and cover at room temperature ready to eat in the morning.

Overnight oats with strawberries, banana and nut butter

Makes: 2 servings

INGREDIENTS

Oats

  • 1 medium ripe banana, mashed
  • 1 1/4 cups almond milk or soy milk
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt or plain soy yogurt
  • ½ cup gluten free rolled oats
  • ½ cup buckwheat flakes
  • 1 tablespoons chia seeds
  • 10 strawberries, diced
  • 2 tablespoons almond butter or other nut butter of your choice (cashew, hazelnut)

Toppings

  • 2 tbsp ground flax seeds
  • 2 tbsp shredded coconut
  • 2 tbsp chopped walnuts

 

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Add banana, almond milk and yogurt to a medium bowl and stir until well combined and creamy. Stir in oats, buckwheat flakes, chia seeds, strawberries and almond butter. Divide evenly into two mason jars or mugs, then cover and place in fridge overnight.
  2. Once ready to serve, top each overnight oat serving with a few extra slices of strawberries and if desired some ground flax seeds, shredded coconut and chopped walnuts.

Chicken Stir fry with zoodles

This is a more nutrient dense version of Chinese stir fry noodles, using zoodles (zucchini noodles). It is easy to make and ready to eat in 30 minutes!

Makes: 2 large portions, or 4 small portions

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • ½ small white onion
  • 2 medium sized chicken breasts cut into small pieces
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled and cut into small pieces
  • ½ red pepper cut into small pieces
  • ½ green or yellow pepper cut into small pieces
  • 2 medium sized zucchinis, spiralized (made into zoodles)
  • 2-3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2 tsp sesame oil

 

Instructions:

  1. In a small bowl, add soy sauce and sesame oil. Stir and set aside for later.
  2. In a large wok, add onion and olive oil over low heat. Cook for a few minutes until onion is translucent and then add the garlic and cook for one minute. Do not let the garlic burn.
  3. Add in the chicken pieces and cook until almost completely cooked. If chicken starts sticking to the pan, add more olive oil.
  4. When chicken is almost cooked, add in carrots and peppers. Cook until vegetables are tender and chicken is completely cooked (no longer pink).
  5. Add in the zoodles and pour the sauce over the noodles.
  6. Stir and toss until everything is evenly coated and cook until zucchini noodles are tender but still crisp (2-3 minutes).
  7. Serve immediately.

Strawberry rhubarb overnight oats

Healthy make-ahead breakfast for busy mornings. This is nutrient dense breakfast full of plant-based protein. The fruit compote topping can be eaten cold or warm.

Ingredients:

Overnight oats:

  • ¼ cup oats
  • ¼ cup buckwheat flakes (if you don’t have these, you can use oats instead)
  • ½ cup plain Greek yogurt or full fat plain yogurt or plain soya yogurt
  • ½ cup unsweetened almond milk, soya milk or any other plant-based milk
  • ½ tablespoon chia seeds

 

Topping:

  • 1/4 cup fresh rhubarb, chopped
  • 6 medium strawberries, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup

 

Instructions:

  1. Combine all overnight oat ingredients in a jar or container with a lid, stirring well. Refrigerate overnight.
  2. In a small saucepan over low heat, heat chopped rhubarb, strawberries, and water.
  3. Cook 3-5 minutes, or until fruit is softened and cooked down.
  4. Add maple syrup, and remove from heat.
  5. Put the fruit compote in a closed jar and store in fridge.
  6. The next morning, either heat the compote over low heat and add it on top of the overnight oats or serve it cold on top of the oats.
  7. You can add chopped nuts, shredded coconut or ground flax seeds to your oats to add flavour and even more plant-based protein to this nutrient rich breakfast.

Golden French Lentil Stew

Makes 4 servings

Soak time: minimum 2 hours, ideally overnight

Prep time: 20 to 25 minutes

Cook time: 35 to 45 minutes

 

Ingredients

  • ½ cup raw cashews
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 1 leek thinly sliced
  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 ½ tsp fine sea salt
  • 2 medium carrots diced
  • 2 stalks of celery diced
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 ½ tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 400 ml can of diced tomatoes with their juice
  • ¾ cup uncooked lentils
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 cups chopped swiss chard or kale leaves
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tsp white wine vinegar

Directions:

  1. Put the cashews in a bowl and cover with water. Soak for 2 hours or overnight. If you forgot to soak the cashews, cover them with boiling water for 30-60 minutes.
  2. Put the lentils in a bowl and cover with water. Soak for 2 hours or overnight.
  3. Drain and rinse the cashews and put them in a high-speed blender with ½ cup of water.
  4. Blend on high until smooth and creamy. Put in a small bowl and set aside.
  5. Drain and rinse the lentils.
  6. In a large Dutch oven or pot, heat the olive oil over low heat.
  7. Stir in the onion and garlic and a couple of pinches of salt. Sauté until softened, about 4 minutes.
  8. Stir in the carrots and celery and cook for another few minutes. Stir in the spices.
  9. Add the diced tomatoes with their juices, lentils, broth and remaining 1 ½ cups of water.
  10. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer, uncovered 30 to 35 minutes, until the lentils are tender.
  11. Stir in the cashew cream and swiss chard, salt, pepper and vinegar.
  12. Cook for a few minutes over low heat until the chard is wilted.
  13. Serve immediately or store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.

 

Source: Oh She Glows Every Day by Angela Liddon

Leek and broccoli soup

Serves 4-6 people

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 medium leeks chopped and rinsed
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 1 medium potato, peeled and cut into small cubes
  • 4 cups of vegetable stock
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 head of broccoli chopped and stems peeled
  • 1 large handful of spinach rinsed
  • Pine nuts and sunflower seeds (optional for garnish)

Instructions

  1. In a saucepan over low heat, heat the oil then add onions and leeks. Cook until soft but do not let it brown.
  2. Add the broccoli stems, potatoes and stock and mix well.
  3. Simmer for 10-15 minutes until the potatoes are tender
  4. Add the broccoli florets and cook for 5-8 minutes on low heat being careful not to overcook the broccoli.
  5. Turn the soup off and add the spinach.
  6. Remove the bay leaf.
  7. Pour into a blender and mix until you reach a very smooth consistency.
  8. Add salt and pepper to taste. Personally, I did not add or pepper.
  9. Serve topped with pine nuts or sunflower seeds.