A comforting and rich dish, this Creamy Polenta with Red Wine Mushrooms is great for entertaining, but easy enough for a decadent-tasting meal for two.
For the Polenta:
2 cups vegetable broth
2 cups soy milk
1 tbsp herbes de provence, crumbled
1 cup polenta (or cornmeal)
1/4 cup nutritional yeast (optional)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the Mushrooms:
1 red onion, finely sliced
350g mushrooms, sliced (I used 250g chestnut and 100g shiitake)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup suitable-for-vegans red wine
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp tomato purée
1 tsp dried thyme, crumbled
1 heaped tsp cornflour (cornstarch) mixed to a smooth paste with a little cold water
Freshly ground black pepper
1. Add the vegetable broth and soy milk to a large saucepan over a medium heat. Stir in the herbes de provence. Sprinkle in the polenta, whisking vigorously as you go (there’s no need for the water to be boiling or even warm to start polenta).
2. As soon as the polenta starts to spit, reduce the heat to low. Stir occasionally until the polenta starts to pull away from the sides of the pan. Add the nutritional yeast, if using, and season to taste.
3. Meanwhile, sauté the mushrooms and the onion until the liquid released from the mushrooms is reabsorbed. Add the garlic and stir for a few seconds before stirring in the wine. Mix in the tomato purée and thyme and allow to cook for 2-3 minutes. Stir in the cornflour mixture and allow to thicken. Season with black pepper.
4. Serve the mushrooms on top of the polenta, garnished with a little parsley if desired.
This curry is moderately spicy (but can be easily adjusted) and very bright in flavour. It takes under 15 minutes to make and serves 2.
Romano beans are long, flat green beans, but you can substitute them for French green beans, sugar snap peas, mangetout, etc.
1/2 yellow onion, sliced
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp black onion seeds
6 curry leaves
400ml can coconut milk
1 tsp turmeric
1 tbsp garlic-ginger paste
Pinch ground cloves
Pinch red chilli flakes
2 tsp hot or medium curry powder
Pinch ground cardamom
1 tsp lemon juice
Pinch suitable-for-vegans sugar
400g Romano beans, topped, tailed, and sliced on the diagonal into 2cm lengths
- In a large, stainless steel pan over a medium-low heat, sauté the onions until starting to soften. Remove from the pan and set aside.
- Add the mustard seeds, black onion seeds, and curry powder. Cook until the seeds start to turn fragrant.
- Add the remaining ingredients and mix well. Bring to the boil, reduce heat to a simmer, and cook, covered for 8 minutes.
- Season with salt to taste. Serve with rice, if desired.
A simple, budget recipe, bursting with colour, and oil-free, this stew is bound to please. Serves 4.
1 leek, sliced
6 cloves garlic, minced
3 carrots, sliced
3 stalks celery, sliced
250g red cabbage, finely shredded
2 cans tomatoes (400g each)
1 l vegetable stock
1 tsp lemon juice
1 tbsp smoked paprika
1 tbsp hot paprika
200g cooked cannellini beans
To garnish, soured tofu
1. Sweat the leek, garlic, carrots, and celery in a large stock pot over the lowest heat possible for 10 minutes. If they start to stick, add a splash of water.
2. Add the red cabbage, tomatoes, vegetable stock, lemon juice (which serves the function of preventing the cabbage from losing its colour) and paprikas to the pot. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer for 20 minutes, until the carrots are fork tender.
3. Add the beans, and warm through.
4. Serve garnished with some soured tofu, if desired.
Delicately fragrant, vivid, and lively, this comforting gluten-free dish is full of nutrients. Eat your fill!
1 leek, finely chopped
250g mushrooms, sliced
1 fennel bulb, quartered and finely sliced
150g tenderstem broccoli (substitute with broccoli florets if tenderstem is hard to find)
5 sage leaves, finely minced
Small bunch each basil and parsley, minced
200g brown rice pasta
2 large handfuls baby spinach
For the sauce
50g white beans of choice
150g silken tofu, drained
Zest 1 lemon
Juice 1/2 lemon
3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes
1/4 cup unsweetened, unflavoured all-plant milk of choice (soy milk used here)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1. Steam the fennel and broccoli until just tender (about 5 minutes).
2. Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to package directions, drain, reserving 1 cup of cooking liquid, and rinse to remove the excess starch.
3. Sauté the leeks and mushrooms over a medium heat in a non-stick pan until softened (about 5 minutes). Add the sage.
4. Blend all the sauce ingredients. Taste and adjust seasonings if desired.
5. Add the sauce to the leeks and mushrooms vegetables, thinning out to desired consistency with a little of the reserved cooking water. Toss in the pasta, fennel, and broccoli to warm through.
6. Serve the pasta on a bed of spinach, garnished with a little extra lemon zest, more black pepper, and the minced basil and parsley.
Ideal for novice cooks, this serves 6, and takes under 20 minutes to make.
1 leek, roughly chopped
4 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1 head broccoli, in florets
2 courgettes (zucchini), roughly chopped
200g frozen green beans (French beans)
200g frozen garden peas
150g spinach, roughly chopped
1.5 litres vegetable stock
2 tsp curry powder
1 tsp smoked paprika
Black pepper, to taste
1. Heat a large stock pot over a medium low heat, and sauté the leeks for about 3 minutes until starting to soften. Add the garlic and sauté for 30 seconds more.
2. Add the rest of the ingredients except for the pepper.
3. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes.
4. Blend in batches, return to the pot, and season with black pepper (and, if you like, some crispy fried onions and all-plant (e.g. soya, coconut, almond) plain yogurt).
This inexpensive, oil-free and relatively simple pasta sauce is made of blended cauliflower and beans, and when served with a pasta of your choice, it’s filling but not heavy. It serves 4 people with 125g egg-free dried pasta per person, and vegetables of choice.
400g frozen cauliflower, steamed for 8 minutes or until warmed through and tender
1/2 cup white beans of choice
2 tsp mixed Italian herbs (parsley, rosemary, oregano, basil, thyme)
2 garlic cloves
3 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes
2/3 cup unsalted all-plant milk
1/3 cup cold vegetable broth
1 tbsp yellow miso paste
1 tsp suitable-for-vegans Dijon mustard
2 tsp white wine vinegar
1 tsp onion granules
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Fresh parsley to taste, minced
- Blend all ingredients in a jug blender until smooth. Season to taste and blend again.
- Add to cooked pasta and vegetables to heat through. Season to taste again, and stir the parsley through.
This speedy Creamy Broccoli Soup takes under 20 minutes, is oil-free, and serves 2 (generous portions) and is great for those on a tighter budget. The spices create an interesting flavour profile with just a tiny bit of heat.
1 onion, roughly chopped
2 stalks celery, roughly chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and roughly chopped
2 tbsp wholemeal flour
1 large head broccoli, roughly chopped
4 cups vegetable broth
3/4 cup coconut milk
1 tsp suitable-for-vegans yellow or Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp cumin
1 tsp salt
pinch white pepper
1. Heat a soup pan or large pot over a medium-low heat. Add the onion, celery, and carrots, and cook, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes, adding a splash or two of water if the vegetables start to stick.
2. Mix the flour with 1/4 cup vegetable broth from the 4 cups. Add to the vegetables and cook stirring, for 1 minute more.
3. Add the rest of the ingredients to the pot. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes until the vegetables are tender.
4. Blend the soup with an immersion blender, or in batches in a jug blender. Season to taste, and adjust the seasoning if desired.
A very simple side dish based on an Ethiopian dish. Trade the wheat for potatoes and add some carrots for a more traditional version.
1 1/2 cups water
1/2t coarse sea salt, divided
1/2 cup soft wheat berries
2T plant only margarine
1/2T fresh garlic, minced
1t fresh ginger, minced
1/4t dried ground cumin
1/4t dried ground turmeric
2 cups shredded cabbage (I use coleslaw mix)
1/2t white vinegar
Sea salt and black pepper to taste
In a small sauce pan with a lid, bring the water and 1/4t sea salt to a light boil.
Add the wheat, reduce to low, cover and simmer until all the water is absorbed (about 45 minutes give or take).
Remove from heat and set aside.
When the wheat is done, in a large frying pan on medium low, bring the margarine to heat with the sea salt.
Add the spices and fry for 2 minutes.
Add the cabbage and the wheat, and stir to combine.
Add the vinegar.
Fry for 7-10 minutes or until the cabbage is lightly wilted, stirring frequently.
Remove from heat and serve.