Brinjal Bhaji (Aubergine Curry)

Pleasantly spicy, incredibly fragrant, and full of textural contrasts, this aubergine curry serves 4 with rice.


3 medium aubergines, cubed
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp black onion seeds
1 tsp coriander seeds
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
2 red onions, chopped
1 inch piece ginger, peeled and minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp chilli flakes
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 can chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp soy sauce
3/4 cup vegetable broth
100g frozen peas
1 tsp garam masala


1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Line a baking tray with a silicone sheet or baking parchment, and spread the aubergine out in a single layer. Roast for 20 minutes, turning once.
2. Meanwhile, preheat a large pot, and add the seeds. When they start to move about, remove from the pan and set aside.
3. Dry-sauté the onion until softened, adding a splash of water if they start to stick. Add the garlic, ginger, chilli flakes, and turmeric for 30 seconds more. Stir the seeds back in.
4. Add the tomatoes, soy sauce, vegetable broth, peas, garam masala, and aubergine to the pot. Simmer until the liquid is mostly thick and evaporated and the aubergines are soft.

Fragrant Orange Cauliflower Bites

A healthier and budget version of a takeaway favourite: baked breaded and battered cauliflower in a spicy orange sauce. Ready in about 40 minutes, and a perfect accompaniment to rice and plenty of sautéed mushrooms and greens. Serves 4.


1 medium head cauliflower, in florets

For the coating

35g breadcrumbs
75g flour
1 tsp Chinese five-spice powder
150ml (approx.) unsweetened plant milk

For the sauce

3 cloves garlic, minced
1 inch piece of ginger, grated
1 red chilli, sliced
1 scallion, sliced
Juice and rind 2 oranges
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp maple syrup
2 tsp rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp cornflour

1. Preheat oven to 220C. Line a baking tray with a silicone mat or baking parchment.
2. Mix the breadcrumbs, flour, and five-spice powder for the batter. Add the plant milk gradually until the batter is firm.
3. Dip the cauliflower florets in the batter to coat. Lay on the baking tray and bake for 30 minutes, turning once.
4. Mix all sauce ingredients in a saucepan. Simmer gently until thickened.

Gobi Manchurian

A rich and spicy recipe that serves 4; feel free to halve the amount of chilli.


1 cauliflower, broken into florets

For the sauce

1 yellow onion, finely chopped
1 bunch scallions, chopped
2 green chillies, chopped (1 of these reserved for garnishing)
1 inch ginger, peeled and grated
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 tbsp ketchup
1 tbsp tomato purée
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
1 1/2 cups vegetable broth, plus 1/4 cup extra for making a cornflour paste
1 heaped tbsp cornflour

For the batter
1 cup flour
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp ginger
1 tbsp vinegar
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp chilli paste
1 tbsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
Enough cold water to make a really thick batter


For the cauliflower

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil, turn off the heat, add the cauliflower and allow it to blanch for 10-15 minutes until tender. Drain and set aside.

For the sauce

1. Heat a nonstick pan over a medium-low heat and dry-sauté the onion and scallions gently until the onion is just turning translucent.
2. Add the ginger, one of the chillies, and the garlic and continue to fry until aromatic.
3. Stir in ketchup, tomato purée, soy sauce, sweet chilli sauce, black pepper, and vegetable broth, and bring to the boil. Allow to cook together for a minute or two.
4. Mix the cornflour with enough water to make a smooth paste, and stir in. Allow to cook for a couple of minutes until the sauce thickens and is glossy, and remove from the heat.

For the batter
1. Mix all the ingredients, apart from water, together in a large bowl.
2. Add water a little at a time, whisking with a fork, until you have a thick batter that doesn’t drop easily from the back of a spoon.

For the cauliflower

1. Preheat the oven to 200C.
2. Dip the cauliflower florets into the batter one at a time, and place on a parchment- or silicone-lined baking tray. Bake for 20 minutes at, turning once.
3. When all florets have been baked, reheat the sauce and add the battered florets to it, mixing them in carefully to avoid breaking the batter. Allow them to warm through in the sauce (about 4 minutes).
4. Serve with rice, garnished with the reserved chopped green chilli.

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tortillas with a Green Lime Dressing

Although this dish looks quite involved, it takes under 30 minutes to prepare, and is incredibly flavoursome. Serves 2.


For the Spice Mix

1 tsp cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp paprika
Pinch cayenne pepper

For the Tortillas

2 small sweet potatoes (about 350g), peeled and cut into smaller-than-bite-sized chunks
1/2 red onion, medium dice
1 bell pepper, medium dice
1 400g can black beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup + 1 tbsp vegetable stock
4 mini flour or corn tortillas

For the Dressing

1/2 cup soy or coconut yoghurt
2 tbsp lime juice
50g kale
Handful spinach
Soy (or other plant) milk, as needed, to thin to desired consistency


1. Preheat the oven to 220C. Prepare the potatoes. Bring the sweet potatoes to a boil in a pot of cold salted water, and allow to boil for just 5 minutes, to soften. Meanwhile, line a baking tray with aluminium foil, parchment, or a silicone mat. Drain the potatoes, and toss with the tbsp vegetable stock and a few generous pinches of the spice mix. Place in a single layer on the baking tray, and roast in the oven for 10 minutes, turning once.
2. Meanwhile, in a nonstick frying pan over a medium-low heat, sauté the onions and peppers until starting to soften. Add the beans, the stock, and 1-2 tsp spice mix, to taste. Allow to cook gently until the liquid is evaporated and the beans are soft. Mash the beans slightly with the back of a fork or a potato masher.
3. Make the dressing by combining the yoghurt, lime juice, kale, spinach, 1-2 tsp of the spice mix in a blender. Blend until smooth, adding some plant milk 1 tbsp at a time to thin to desired consistency. You will have leftover dressing, but you can save it for salads.
4. Warm the tortillas according to package directions. Drizzle with the dressing, and top with the sweet potatoes and the bean mix.

Spicy Stir-Fry Vegetable Soup

This spicy loaded soup is ready in 15 minutes and serves 8, so feel free to halve the recipe. If you don’t like spice, reduce the amount of chili or omit altogether. Feel free to use the recipe as a roadmap: no ingredient is essential, so experiment with the vegetables and see which flavours appeal to you.


1 red onion, sliced
3 bell peppers, sliced
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 inch piece of ginger, quartered and thinly sliced
150g button mushrooms, quartered
2 bok choy, the white ends sliced and the green tops left whole
2 red chilis (optional), sliced
1/2 block tofu (approx 150g), cubed
2 litres vegetable stock
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 tbsp yellow miso paste


1. Sauté the onions in a large soup pot over a medium-low heat. When they start to colour, add the peppers, garlic, ginger, mushrooms, bok choy whites, and chilis.
2. When the vegetables have started to soften, add the tofu, stock, and soy sauce.
3. Don’t bring the soup to a boil; instead, allow it to simmer over a low heat for about 5 minutes.
4. Add the bok choy and the miso, and stir. Simmer for two minutes more.

Spicy, smoky tempeh burrito with avocado, spinach and fresh tortilla

Simple, spicy and rich, this makes enough for 2 good sized wraps, but easily doubles. For a single large burrito, overlap the tortillas by about 5″ – 6″ and roll everything together.


For the filling
1T avocado oil (or similar)
1/4t coarse sea salt
1 cup sweet onion, 1/4″ dice
1/2 cup red bell pepper, 1/4″ dice
1T fresh garlic, minced
1T smoked paprika
1/2T garam massala
1/2t dried red chilis (or to taste)
125g tempeh, minced (use pasteurized)
1/2 to 1T coconut sugar (start with 1/2T but sweeten to taste)
1/2T lemon juice
1 cup mushroom stock
1/2 cup tomato passata (or puree)
2T nutritional yeast
Coarse sea salt and black pepper to taste

For the tortilla
1 cup heaping whole wheat bread flour
1/2 cup water

For the rest
1 ripe avocado, peeled, stoned and thinly sliced
2 cups spinach, coarsely chopped
2T nutritional yeast
A few pinches sea salt

Optional: Fresh habanero, jalapeno or even poblano pepper will add flavour and some heat to this dish. Maple syrup will do fine in place of the coconut sugar if that’s what you have. Use raw spinach if you prefer, but overall, expect some rolling challenges.


First, start the tempeh, then make the tortillas and then the rest. Warm a large frying pan on medium high heat. Add the oil and sea salt. Add the onion and saute for 2 – 3 minutes. Add the red pepper and spices. Saute another 2 minutes. Add the tempeh and coconut sugar. Saute for 3 – 5 minutes, until the pan is starting to brown a little.

Add the lemon juice and deglaze the pan. Add the stock. Bring the pan to a simmer, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 30 minutes. Uncover, add the passata, and simmer another 30 – 40 minutes until the liquid is mostly cooked off. When done, remove from heat and set aside.

When the tempeh is getting thick, start the tortillas. Add the water to the flour. Knead until a smooth elastic dough forms, and then another 2 -3 minutes. Cover with a warm wet tea towel and let the dough rest about 15 minutes.

When rested, break the dough into 2 balls. Roll out on a floured board to 12″ – 14″, and about 1/8″ thick (or use a tortilla press if you have one). Repeat with the other ball of dough.

Warm a large frying pan on medium high heat. Dry fry until the tortilla is done on one side (it will be lightly browned and bubbled). Flip and fry the other side. Set aside and repeat with the other piece of dough. Cover both with a tea towel while you finish everything else.

While the dough is resting, preheat the oven to 450F. Add the spinach to a baking sheet or roasting pan and roast for about 5 minutes, until it’s nicely wilted. Remove and set aside. When the tortilla and spinach are ready and the tempeh has cooled a bit, season the tempeh to taste and add the nutritional yeast. Stir to combine.

To fill, add the spinach to a tortilla in a long, thin line toward the middle-bottom of the tortilla. Sprinkle with a bit of sea salt and nutritional yeast. Add half of the tempeh mixture. Add avocado slices. Sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt and nutritional yeast, and roll up carefully (warm filing can easily tear through a tortilla).

To roll, bring the bottom of the tortilla up away from you over the filling. Tuck. Fold in the sides. Roll over. Repeat with the other tortilla. Let them stand 2-3 minutes (or wrap in foil if you like), and then serve.



Agave and red Thai chili accented seitan crusted with lemon, thyme and pepitas

A sweet and spicy seitan with a flavourful and textured breading (pictured here with potato and kasha salad with kale and mushrooms, a red pepper, cauliflower rose sauce and chives).


For the seitan
3 cups of stock
1/2t of coarse sea salt
1/2 cup of water
2t of agave nectar
1T of tamari
2/3 cup of vital wheat gluten
1/2t of red Thai chili paste (or to taste)
1/4t of ground black pepper
2T of olive oil
Sea salt to taste
For the breading
1 cup of bread crumbs
3T of whole wheat flour
1/4 cup of pepitas, finely chopped
1T of lemon juice
1t of dried thyme, rubbed
2t of tamari
1/2t of onion powder
1/2t of garlic powder
1/4t of turmeric
3-4T of unsweetened soy milk
1T of minced chives
Sea salt and black pepper to taste


Make the seitan first, then the breading when ready.
For the seitan, bring the stock and sea salt to a light simmer.
Mix the dry ingredients, the remaining wet ingredients, and then the dry with the wet to form a ball of dough.
Knead for 2-3 minutes.
Break the ball in half and form two pieces, and flatten the two out.
Reduce the heat to low and add the seitan to the broth.
Simmer/poach on low for about 30-40 minutes.
Remove from the stock and set both aside to cool.
Once the seitan has cooled a bit, preheat the oven to 400F
Mix the the breading ingredients together until well combined and soft (add additional soy milk as required).
Gently pack the top of the seitan with half of the breading, and repeat for the second piece.
On a well-oiled baking sheet, bake on the middle rack for for 15-20 or until the breading is lightly crispy. Ovens vary; use the colour and texture of the breading as your guide.
When done, remove from the oven, let stand 5 minutes to cool and garnish with chives.

Smoky, spicy tomato sauce with smoked paprika and red Thai chili

A simple red sauce for those times when you want to add some bright colour and strong flavour to the plate without making it too heavy. Pictured here with seitan, stir fried spinach and mashed purple yam.


1T cooking oil
1/4t coarse sea salt
1t smoked paprika
1/2t red Thai chili paste (or to taste)
1 cup passata (or tomato puree)
1/2t coconut sugar
1t tapioca flour dissolved in 1T cold water
Sea salt and black pepper to taste


In a frying pan, bring the oil and coarse sea salt to heat on medium high.
Add the chili and the paprika and fry for 2 minutes.
Add the passata and coconut sugar.
Bring the sauce to a simmer, reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 5-7 minutes until reduced by about half.
Add the tapioca mixture slowly, stirring continuously until thickened.
Remove from heat, season to taste and serve.

Tacos with spicy tempeh, white miso sauce and baby greens

Soft, hand rolled corn tortillas, warm spicy tempeh and lime accented greens make this a lovely and flavourful dish. Fresh tortillas are terrific and when you make them from scratch, you control all of the ingredients. Be sure to use masa harina rather than regular corn flour
for this recipe. This makes eight small tacos.

For the tempeh
1T cooking oil
1T fresh garlic, minced
1T red Thai chili paste (or similar and/or to taste)
250g tempeh, crumbled (use pasteurized)
1/4 cup tamari (or to taste)
1 cup vegetable stock
1/4t coarse sea salt

For the tortillas
1 1/2 cups masa harina
1/2T ground flax seed
1/2t coarse sea salt
1 cup hot water

For the white sauce
1 cup unsweetened plant milk (I use soy)
1/4t coarse sea salt
1T white vinegar
1T sesame seed butter
1T white miso
2T tapioca flour dissolved in 2T cold water
Sea salt and black pepper to taste

For the greens
1T olive oil
1t lime juice
1/4t coarse sea salt
1T nutritional yeast
1 cup loose baby kale
1 cup loose baby spinach

For the garnish
1/2 cup passata (or tomato puree)
1/2t red Thai chili paste (or similar and/or to taste)
Coarse sea salt and black pepper to taste.
2T nutritional yeast

First, start the tempeh, then the tortillas, the white sauce, the greens and the garnish.
In a frying pan with a lid, bring the oil and sea salt to heat on medium high.
Add the garlic and chili and fry for 2 minutes.
Add the tempeh and fry for 3-5 minutes.
Add the tamari and deglaze the pan.
Add the stock, cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 45 minutes.
While the tempeh simmers, make the tortillas.
Mix the dry ingredients and add the water.
Stir to form a smooth, pliable dough, neither too dry nor moist.
If the dough is too wet, add more masa 1T at at time; if too dry, add water 1T at a time.
Divide the dough into 8 equal parts, and flatten each into a 2-3″ round disk.
Cover the dough with a damp cloth while you press the tortillas.
Heat a frying pan on medium high heat.
If you have a tortilla press, follow the instructions provided.
If you don’t, roll the tortillas out gently between two sheets of plastic wrap into rough circles about 1/8″ thick, about 5-6″ in diameter.
It’s the peeling of the tortilla that’s of the most difficult part — go slowly.
Carefully peel and add the tortilla and cook until the top of the tortilla is start to look dry.
Flip and cook the other side (it should be about 1 minute each side, a little more on the first, a little less on the second).Little brown spots make a tortilla look lovely.
Repeat for the remaining 7 tortillas and cover with a warm, very lightly damp tea towel.
Let them rest for about 20 minutes to cool and soften until you’re ready to use.
The tortillas will keep, but you’ll likely have to steam them to use them later.
At the 40 minute mark, preheat the oven to 450F.
In a shallow pan with sides, bake the tempeh for another 20 minutes or until the moisture has been absorbed the tempeh has started to brown. Ovens vary; use the colour as your guide. Don’t overcook.
Start the white sauce and broil the tempeh for another 5 minutes.
In a small sauce pan, bring the soy milk to a simmer.
Add the sea salt, miso, sesame seed butter and vinegar.
Stir to combine and simmer for 5 minutes uncovered.
Slowly add the tapioca solution stirring continuously until it thickens.
Remove from heat and season to taste.
Remove the tempeh from the oven.
Let the white sauce and the tempeh cool for a few minutes.
While they cool, whisk the dressing for the greens and toss.
Whisk the ingredients for the garnish.
To assemble, fill each tortilla with 3-4T tempeh, 2T white sauce, 1/4 cup greens and then about 2t passata
Sprinkle with nutritional yeast and serve.

Sweet, spicy potatoes, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts roasted with mango, sesame, and curry spices

Seasoned with fresh, ripe mango, curry spices and
crushed chili, roasted and then tossed with baby greens, this is a simple but flavourful small plate for four or a meal for two.


3 cups cauliflower florets
2 cups white potato, skin on and cut in 1/2″ dice
1 cup Brussels sprouts, halved lengthwise
1 cup vidalia onion, peeled and cut in 1/4″ dice
1 1/2 cups fresh mango, pitted, peeled and chopped.
1/2t coarse sea salt
3T sesame seed butter
3T curry powder (medium hot)
1/4t dried crushed red chili (or to taste, I use 1/2t)
1T fresh garlic, crushed and minced
1t fresh ginger, grated and minced
1 cup vegetable stock
2 cups mixed baby greens
Sea salt and black (or red) pepper to taste

Optional: Replace the stock and sesame seed butter with a can of full fat coconut milk or the potatoes with sweet potatoes. Replace the sprouts with shredded green cabbage if you prefer.


Preheat the oven for 400F. Prepare the cauliflower,
potato, sprouts, and onion and add to a roasting pan or baking sheet with side, potatoes on the bottom, then onions, then sprouts, with the cauliflower last.

Puree the mango, sea salt, sesame seed butter and spices until smooth. Add the stock. Puree smooth again. Pour the mango, sesame and spice mixture evenly over the vegetables to coat.

Roast on the middle rack, stirring periodically until
everything is very lightly browned and the potatoes are fork tender. Expect about 1 hour, but ovens vary. Use the texture and colour of the ingredients as a guide. Stir more frequently toward the end to avoid sticking.

When done, remove from the oven and toss with baby greens. Let stand 2-3 minutes to wilt the greens lightly. Season to taste and serve.