Cannellini Bean Sea Cakes with Parsley Sauce

Cannellini beans are so extremely versatile. They blend down to make sauces and dips; they make great binders in burgers; they taste good sprinkled over salads or cooked in a sauce. But they’re particularly good made into sea cakes, mixed with onion and sea vegetables, coated in breadcrumbs, and baked in the oven for a filling and healthy main dish. Makes 4 cakes.

Ingredients

For the sea cakes

2 cups cooked cannellini beans (another white bean will do)
1 tsp seaweed powder or flakes; I prefer kombu
1/2 onion, finely chopped
salt and pepper to taste
1 tbsp cornflour mixed with 1/4 cup water
75g wholegrain breadcrumbs

For the parsley sauce

Ingredients
2 cups unsweetened soya (or other plant) milk
1 tbsp cornflour
1 tbsp onion granules
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp salt
pinch white pepper
1 bunch fresh parsley, finely minced

Method

1. Preheat oven to 200C.
2. Make the sea cakes. Mash the beans in a large bowl with the back of a fork.Stir in seaweed, onion, and salt and pepper. Form the beans into four patties, dip in the cornflour mix, and coat in breadcrumbs.Bake on a silicone mat on a baking tray for 20 minutes, turning once.
3. Meanwhile, make the parsley sauce. Mix 1/4 of the soya milk with the cornflour. Set aside. Place the remaining soya milk into a saucepan and heat gently. Whisk in the onion granules, garlic powder, salt and pepper, and parsley. When the milk comes to a simmer, add the cornflour mix and stir continuously to thicken.
4. Serve the sea cakes with the parsley sauce, steamed greens, and mashed, boiled, or steamed potatoes.

Tofu Pesto Spread

Although this spread is ideal for crusty bread, it also makes a wonderful stuffing for pasta shells. It’s incredibly simple to make: just put all of the ingredients into a blender or food processor.

Ingredients

1/2 block extra-firm tofu (about 170g), crumbled
1 cup toasted pine nuts or raw macadamia nuts
1 cup spinach leaves, tightly packed
Large bunch basil
Juice 1/2 lemon
2 tsp white or yellow miso
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 tsp sea salt, or to taste

Method

Pulse all of the ingredients in a food processor or blender, stopping occasionally to scrape down the sides if necessary. Don’t overprocess; you want the finished product to have some depth of texture from the nuts.

Blueberry Bean Salad

One of the joys of salad is the possibility to get creative with them. This fruity, beany salad is certainly novel, and the recipe results in a large portion for one, or a medium-sized portion for two.

Ingredients
6 leaves romaine/cos lettuce, shredded
1 sweet apple, diced
1/4 cup blueberries
1 stalk celery, diced
1 cold baked potato (skin on), chopped
1/4 cup cooked black beans
1 scallion/green onion, chopped
2 tbsp vegan salad dressing (miso-ginger or tofu ranch)

Directions:
1. Add all ingredients to a large bowl.
2. Toss.
3. Enjoy

Tofu Ranch Dip or Dressing

A creamy, cool dip that’s perfect with sticky BBQ cauliflower bites, or thinned out further and served as a salad dressing.

Ingredients

1 pack firm silken tofu
2 tsp garlic granules
2 tsp onion granules
1 tsp dried dill
1 tbsp cider or rice vinegar
1 tbsp pickle brine (optional)
2 tsp maple syrup
Salt and pepper to taste
Soy milk, or other all-plant milk, to thin as desired

Method

Whizz all of the ingredients in a food processor, scraping down the sides as necessary. Taste and adjust seasonings as required.

Peanut-Hoisin Lettuce Cups

A budget dish that will soon become a go-to favourite. Serves 4

Ingredients

8 large Romaine/Cos lettuce leaves
2 inches cucumber, cut into matchsticks
4 scallions, cut into matchsticks
1 large carrot, cut into matchsticks
1/4 cup peanuts, lightly toasted
2 cups cooked rice
1 block tofu, drained, pressed, and crumbled

For the marinade:
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp ginger powder
1 tsp Chinese Five Spice powder
1 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp hoisin sauce

For the sauce:
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 tbsp suitable-for-vegans hoisin sauce
2 tsp sriracha
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp lime juice
1 tsp rice vinegar
1 tsp maple syrup
1/2 tsp Chinese Five Spice powder
1/4-1/2 cup water, or as needed to thin

Method

1. Mix all of the ingredients for the marinade in a large bowl. Add the tofu and stir to coat. Set aside while making the sauce.
2. Mix all of the ingredients for the sauce, apart from the water, in a small saucepan over a low heat. Add the water as needed to thin the sauce to the desired consistency, making sure it drops from a spoon but is not too runny. Remove from the heat.
3. Heat a nonstick frying pan over a medium heat and add the tofu with the marinade. Cook until the tofu starts to turn golden brown. Remove from the heat.
4. Fill each lettuce leaf with rice, tofu, scallions, cucumber, carrots. Top with sauce and sprinkle with toasted peanuts.

Banana-Blueberry-Walnut Muffins

Perfect for breakfast or a sweet snack, these muffins are oil-free and quite easy to make.

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups oat flour (I ground down 1 cup oats in the blender)
1/2 cup oat bran
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
Pinch nutmeg
1 tsp mixed spice
3 ripe bananas, mashed
1/3 cup unsweetened soy milk (or other all-plant milk of choice)
1/2 cup liquid sweetener (e.g. brown rice syrup, date syrup, agave nectar, maple syrup)
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup blueberries
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped

Method

1. Preheat oven to 180C. Line a silicone muffin tin with paper or silicone cases.
2. In a large bowl, mix the flour, bran, baking powder, salt, nutmeg, and mixed spice.
3. In another large bowl, mix the bananas, plant milk, sweetener, vanilla, and vinegar.
4. Mix the wet ingredients into the dry and stir well to combine.
5. Add the blueberries and the walnuts and fold in, being careful not to overmix.
6. Fill the muffin tins with the mixture, and bake until a toothpick inserted into the muffins comes out clean.

Mushroom-Walnut Spread

Totally retro, we’re taking you on a trip back in time with this tasty spread. You don’t need to serve it from a hostess trolley with Demis Roussos records playing in the background, but we won’t judge you if you do.

Ingredients

1 leek, sliced
1 small red onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
300g button mushrooms, chopped
20g dried shiitake mushrooms, reconstituted; save the soaking water
Pinch nutmeg
Pinch ground cloves
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp thyme
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 tbsp chopped, fresh parsley
1 tbsp yellow miso
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
1/2 cup walnuts, toasted

Method

1. Heat a nonstick pan over a medium low heat. Add the leeks and red onion, and sauté until just starting to colour.
2. Add both kinds of mushrooms and the soaking water, nutmeg, cloves, paprika, thyme, salt and pepper, and cook until the mushrooms are soft and the liquid has evaporated.
3. Transfer to a blender or food processor with the rest of the ingredients and process until smooth, stopping occasionally to scrape down the sides.
4. Transfer to a ramekin and refrigerate for a couple of hours or until set.

Sweet and Crunchy Speedy Walnut Salad

Who says salads have to be boring? With lots of interesting, complementary textures, plenty of sweetness, and a hint of acidity to balance it all out, this one is most certainly not. This recipe serves four, and is perfect for those who insist that they can’t cook.

Ingredients

1/2 cup plain all-plant yoghurt
3 tbsp parsley, chopped
Zest and juice 1 small lemon
1 tsp maple syrup
2 apples, cored and chopped
4 stalks celery, diced
24 seedless grapes (any colour or a mix), halved
1/4 cup golden raisins
20 walnut halves, toasted and chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Method

1. In a small bowl, mix the yoghurt, parsley, lemon zest, and maple syrup. Season to taste.
2. In a large bowl, toss the apples in the lemon juice. Add all other ingredients apart from the walnuts, and toss.
3. Mix the dressing through the salad. Top with walnuts and serve.

Bibimbap-Inspired Nourish Bowl

Although there are many parts to this dish, don’t let that put you off: you don’t have to make a nourish bowl out of the recipes below; instead, you can make these elements as sides over several days or weeks, or just try the one that you fancy. Each one is relatively easy to make. Pictured, clockwise from 12 o’clock, are kimchi, carrot-daikon pickle, mustard-pickled cucumber, red bell pepper, tamari mushrooms, chilli sautéed courgette, garlic-ginger tempeh, baby spring onions, garlic-sautéd spinach. In the centre is sushi rice topped with sea salad flakes and sesame seeds, and miso-sriracha sauce. Serves 2.

Ingredients

Suitable-for-vegan kimchi
1 cup sushi rice, rinsed well and cooked according to package directions
1 tbsp sesame seeds, lightly toasted
4 baby spring onions, in matchsticks (2 regular spring onions will do)
1 red bell pepper, in strips
Generous few pinches of sea vegetable flakes of your choice
1 tsp sesame oil

Garlic-Ginger Tempeh
250g block frozen tempeh
1 heaped tsp ginger
3 cloves garlic
¼ cup soy sauce
1 tsp rice vinegar
1 tbsp maple syrup
pinch chilli flakes

Carrot-Daikon Pickle
2 carrots, shredded
5g dried daikon, reconstituted in hot water for 5 minutes, and squeezed of water
1 tbsp rice vinegar
1 tsp maple syrup
Pinch salt
½ tsp garlic granules

Mustard-Pickled Cucumber
1 cucumber, shredded
2 tbsp cider or rice vinegar
2 tsp maple syrup
Generous pinch mustard seeds
Generous pinch turmeric

Chilli-Sautéed Courgette (Zucchini)
1 courgette/zucchini, shredded
1 tsp soy sauce
Generous pinch chilli flakes
1 clove garlic, minced

Tamari Mushrooms
300g mushrooms, sliced
1 tbsp tamari
1/2 tsp garlic granules
Pinch ginger

Garlic-Sautéed Spinach
250g baby spinach leaves
1 inch piece ginger, grated
4 garlic cloves, minced

Miso-Sriracha Sauce
2 heaped tbsp genmai miso
1 tsp rice vinegar
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 clove garlic
1/2 tsp ginger
1 tbsp sriracha
Enough water to get to desired consistency

Method

1. Steam the tamari for 15 minutes. When cool enough to handle, dice into cubes. Meanwhile, mix the rest of the garlic-ginger tempeh ingredients in a shallow bowl. Toss in the cubes of tempeh and leave to marinade for 20 minutes.
2. Prepare the sushi rice according to package directions.
3. Mix the carrot-daikon pickle ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.
4. Mix the mustard-pickled cucumber ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.
5. Preheat a nonstick pan over a medium heat. In a small bowl, mix the chilli-sautéed courgette ingredients. In another, mix the tamari mushroom ingredients. Pick up the courgette with your hands, allowing most of the liquid to run back into the bowl through your fingers. Sauté in the pan for just a minute or two until softened. Return to the bowl with the liquid, and keep warm. Wipe out the pan, and do the same with the mushrooms; then repeat for the spinach, keeping each vegetable warm in its own bowl.
6. Wipe out the pan once more, add the sesame oil, and allow to heat. Fry the tempeh until golden.
7. Mix the sauce ingredients, tasting and adjusting the flavour as desired.
8. Arrange the sautéed spinach, kimchi, carrot-daikon pickle, mustard-pickled cucumber, red pepper strips, tamari mushrooms, chilli-sautéed courgette, garlic-ginger tempeh and baby spring onions around the sushi rice. Top the rice with toasted sesame seeds, sea vegetables, and a little of the sauce. Stir everything together to serve, or eat as is.

Five-Minute Oat Flatbread

Simple, quick, tasty, and extremely inexpensive: what more could you ask for in a flatbread? This uses aquafaba (liquid drained from a can of chickpeas), which is a superb binder in cakes, and a lovely coating to help your spices stick to oil-free oven fries.

Ingredients

100g oats (blended to a flour if you have a blender; left whole if not)
1/4 cup aquafaba
1 tsp each garlic powder and smoked paprika

Directions

1. Mix the oats, spices, and aquafaba.
2. Add extra water if needed to make a sticky dough that you can form into a ball with a fork (the consistency doesn’t really matter here; you can make these very loose like pancakes, or very firm like patties).
3. Preheat a nonstick pan over a medium heat, divide the mix into two, and place in the pan. If you’ve got a firmer mix, you may need to flatten it out with the back of a spatula.
4. Fry for 2-3 minutes each side until the dough is set and lightly golden.