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Archive for the ‘awesome’ Category

Butternut squash with Orzo

Isn’t it awesome when someone invites you round for tea and doesn’t stress about feeding you? I went to my friend Rachel’s a couple of weeks ago and she made this:

What a truly awful photo!

What a truly awful photo!

It was lovely. The non-vegan version she had just had the addition of feta. It’s such a simple dish but really was delicious, and the kind of thing you could make lots of and take to work for lunches. Here’s the vague recipe…

  • Butternut squash, roasted in chunks with a bit of all spice and dried chilli
  • Orzo pasta
  • Fresh mint, chopped
  • Lemon juice
  • Pepper
  • Pine nuts

 

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This weekend I went to the Isle of Wight to see my awesome friend Becky. She’s just moved back (which is amazing) and I’ve never been! So it was all very exciting. Becky is not a vegan, but the most wonderfully accommodating and enthusiastic baker you’ve ever met. When she lived in London we went to some wonderful veggie/vegan places together, and she made me things like welsh cakes and chocolate mousse.

Here she is 🙂

me on the left, her on the right

me on the left, her on the right

And here’s the beautiful Island (getting the ferry there was the most exciting thing ever. Loved it)…

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And here’s her vegan scribblings/ideas before I arrived:

And she tried and tested recipes during the week before I arrived :)

And she tried and tested recipes during the week before I arrived 🙂

Also, I guess once you’ve been a vegan for a while, you stop looking at new things (well I did, I guess I got lazy!) – so she introduced me to two new vegan things which I didn’t know about!

Delicious!

Delicious!

This is one of those "may contain traces of milk" things! I'd never even think that this would be ok, so I wouldn't have looked at it

This is one of those “may contain traces of milk” things! I’d never even think that this would be ok, so I wouldn’t have looked at it

Recipes for amazing baked goods will be coming soon (once she sends me them) 🙂

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Here we have another recipe from Becky – omnivore/recipe-veganiser extraordinaire (she did the welsh cakes. Yum). She’s a good ‘un!

Adapted from a Nigella recipe, this chocolate mousse is INSANE. So rich and amazing. It uses marshmallows instead of egg to make it fluffy. She used Dandies that I bought when I did an iherb order a while ago, but you can get vegan marshmallows from lots of online vegan shops, and even in some health food shops.

  • Serves: 4-6

Ingredients

  • 150g mini marshmallows (or normal ones cut in half)
  • 50g dairy-free margarine
  • 250g good dark chocolate (minimum 60% cocoa solids), chopped into small pieces
  • 60ml hot water from a recently boiled kettle
  • 1 x 284ml tub soya cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • raspberries

Method

  1. Put the marshmallows, margarine, chocolate and water in a heavy-based saucepan.
  2. Put the saucepan on the hob, over heat, though keep it fairly gentle, to melt the contents, stirring every now and again.
  3. Remove from the heat.
  4. Meanwhile, whip the cream with the vanilla extract until thick, and then fold into the cooling chocolate mixture until you have a smooth, cohesive mixture.
  5. Pour or scrape into 4 glasses or ramekins on top of raspberries, about 175ml each in capacity, or 6 smaller (125ml) ones
  6. Chill until you want to eat

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I’ve been meaning to write about this for ages but kept forgetting. I got the Happy Cow phone app months ago and I’ve used it loads – definitely one of the most used apps on my phone (after facebook and instagram :)). It’s so nice to know that you can be anywhere and really quickly see on a map how far you are from any veggie/vegan places to eat.

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It uses your current location, and you can either search nearby or search a different location.

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If I click “browse nearby” when I’m in Oxford then it comes up with a list like this:

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The above search showed everything (vegan, vegetarian, veg-friendly etc) which is why there are quite a few veg-friendly places…but if I did a search for vegetarian (I know there are no vegan places in Oxford! I’ve looked before, but alas no), then I get to see a few more helpful results. As you’ll see, Oxford only actually has 2 veggie places – the other two are quite far away! (it’s great that it shows you how far you are from the places in the list).

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Then if you click on the one you’re interested in, you can see much more information about it, like a description, directions, contact details, link to a map etc.

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If you click on “map”, it opens in your usual maps like this:

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And you can see reviews too:

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So there you go. It’s really a great app – I used it a lot in London and it’s how we found Tao. I think I had to pay a couple of quid for it initially but I’d definitely recommend it 🙂

Here’s the website with more info about it

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2 Year Veganniversary

Today, it is 2 years exactly since I made the best decision of my life.

I was reading Vegan Freak, which recommends as a starting point doing a 3-week trial of being vegan. I started those 3 weeks on the 12th of February 2 years ago and never looked back.

Even though it’s only been 2 years, it feels like forever, and I can’t imagine living in any other way. I love that on a daily basis I am acting in a way which is kind and compassionate, doing the least harm to others possible.

In this second year of veganism, the one thing which has kept coming up in conversation which breaks my brain is that SO MANY people don’t know that cows need to have babies in order to make milk. They just think cows are these milk-making machines, rather than living beings which function in the same way as humans or any other animals when it comes to milk production. Strange world.

Happy 2 year Veganniversary, me! 🙂

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