Desserts, Vegan

Tropical Banoffee Pie. Vegan.

The skies are grey today.  Steely grey.  Mid-winter grey.

And it’s pouring with rain.

winter grey days…rainy days…

Time to curl up with a good book, and a slice of Tropical Banoffee Pie…..

vegan banoffee pie

Straight from the 1970’s, revamped + veganised: with a ginger crunch biscuit base, date puree, dark muscovado + coconut cream ‘dulce de leche’ caramelised sauce: infused with vanilla and lime, lemon and lime soaked bananas and coconut whipped cream….(with an optional dash of rum)……

… a little bit of vegan heaven…..

vegan paradise?….quite possibly….



serves 6

Ingredients:   Continue reading “Tropical Banoffee Pie. Vegan.”

Vegan, Vegan Treats

baylees…a vegan scottish whisky cream liqueur…

  *I would like to offer a festive toast to all* 

*  vegan-style  *

    so here’s a recipe for whisky cream liqueur  



baylees – vegan scottish whisky cream liqueur


makes about 700ml.

Ingredients:   Continue reading “baylees…a vegan scottish whisky cream liqueur…”

Desserts, Vegan

Stewed Apricots in Apricot Puree with Almond and Apricot Cakes . . An Indian dessert . . Vegan . .

This is an Indian dessert, that I’ve been making for years, and I believe I originally took it from a dessert by Mridula Baljekar who has long been a cooking guru of mine….

It’s an incredibly simple rich flavourful dessert…. minimum effort …maximum effect….

stewed apricots in apricot puree …

Serve as is …or with cakes or biscuits and a swirl of soya cream….

It really needs nothing…. it’s quite delicious as it is ….

stewed apricots in apricot puree….



Serves 4

a wonderfully simple vegan dessert

Ingredients:   Continue reading “Stewed Apricots in Apricot Puree with Almond and Apricot Cakes . . An Indian dessert . . Vegan . .”

Vegan, Vegan Main Dishes, Vegan on a Shoestring

Pearl Barley, Rosemary, Leek and Potato Stew with Sage Dumplings. . Vegan . .

A delicious dish, befitting of mid-winter, comforting and heart-warming, an old-fashioned stew using a classic combination: pearl barley, leeks, potatoes and rosemary.  Veganised.  Optional extra:  fluffy, savoury, sage, vegan dumplings.

Barley was one of the first cultivated grains, and is now grown widely and found in many styles of cuisine.  Recipes for barley broth of one kind or another can be found dating back many centuries…and in many parts of the globe…

This stew is simple to make and very moreish…..

No fancy ingredients, just good basic, economical home cooking, and a fab. use of seasonal herbs.

I love this stew.

fluffy sage vegan dumpling in a vegan pearl barley stew



Serves 4

Continue reading “Pearl Barley, Rosemary, Leek and Potato Stew with Sage Dumplings. . Vegan . .”

Celebration Dishes, Vegan, Vegan Main Dishes

Nancy’s seasonal mushroom, chestnut, apricot and cranberry nut loaf, with red wine sauce and roasted + steamed vegetables. Vegan .

I’ve worked on this recipe for a while now.   It’s rich, hearty and flavourful.  Quite delicious actually…..

mushroom, chestnut, apricot and cranberry nut loaf served with a rich red wine sauce

It can be made in advance, cooked, cooled, sliced and frozen, or it can be made one day in advance and kept chilled in the refrigerator for 24 hours, before baking.

PS. to freeze, wrap each slice in greaseproof paper when cold, and place in freezer bag.

I served it as the main dish for a roast with all the trimmings, but it’s great with rice and a light sauce, or served cold with salad and pickles.

nut roast

Here is a link to my other festive seasonal offering this winter:

savoury vegan pie (click image for link)




vegan roast

Serves 6-8

Ingredients:   Continue reading “Nancy’s seasonal mushroom, chestnut, apricot and cranberry nut loaf, with red wine sauce and roasted + steamed vegetables. Vegan .”

Vegan, Vegan Ingredients

. .Tea. . § .Vegan.




Before I realised that vegan was the only way I could eat, and live on this planet peaceably  at the same time, I was a serious tea drinker.  And by that I mean black tea and cow’s milk.  The only occasions I didn’t drink tea prior to being vegan, were the numerous periods I spent in France, where they have no idea about tea whatsoever. Lipton’s….. lol.

Back then, even my nearest and dearest were surprised by the number of mugs of tea I could drink in a day….. which is why I’m so very pleased to have found Pukka Herb Teas.

pukka teas

I’m not being paid for writing this, if you’re wondering….but I can see no reason not to mention, on a ‘how to be vegan and never give up’ sort of blog, what I consider to be a really pukka herb tea company.  It’s based in the UK.   Continue reading “. .Tea. . § .Vegan.”

Breakfast, Vegan, Vegan Ingredients, Vegan Snacks

TBLT…tempeh ‘baken’, lettuce and tomato sandwich…the future is vegan….


“The eating of meat extinguishes the seed of great compassion.”~
The Buddha
Mahaparinirvana Sutra


Amidst the recent furore about the possible carcinogenic aspects of bacon, accompanied by all sorts of vitriol, I though I’d put in my own word for pigs….and for tempeh.

Pigs are intelligent, sociable, funny, friendly, and clever…and billions of them are suffering everyday because of the insatiable demand for bacon.

Intensive farming, which is how over half the pigs on the planet are now farmed, causes untold suffering.

In the name of compassion, why can’t we just leave pigs alone?

On a different note, I can honestly say that in the last few years before I made the break and became vegan, I stopped eating bacon anyway, simply because it wasn’t nice.   Chewy, watery, and tasteless.  So what’s all the fuss about?

Meanwhile, the future is vegan.

I personally think that marinaded, fried tempeh makes a splendid vegan alternative to bacon. It’s robust, textural and easy to use.



So here’s how to do it:   Continue reading “TBLT…tempeh ‘baken’, lettuce and tomato sandwich…the future is vegan….”

Cakes, Desserts, Vegan Treats

Basbousa. Egyptian-style Semolina Cake. Flavoured with citrus.

Dense, moist and with a zing of citrus, this semolina cake would be a great finish to these Egyptian-style dishes:

broad bean patties coated in sesame seeds fried in olive oil served with a simple green mezze
spiced paprika stew + marinaded fried tempeh




(click images for links)




citrus basbousa with a refreshing herb tea



serves 8

Ingredients:   Continue reading “Basbousa. Egyptian-style Semolina Cake. Flavoured with citrus.”

Vegan Ingredients, Vegan Main Dishes

Marinaded, fried Tempeh. Served in a spiced paprika pepper and tomato stew. A traditional Egyptian Stew.

Tempeh is one of those ingredients that in the west, you are fairly unlikely to come across until you become a vegan.  It originates from Indonesia.  It’s made by turning whole soya beans into a solid, firm, cake-like slab, using a natural fermentation process involving oligosporus culture.  It doesn’t look so appetising right now, but don’t be put off!  The grey flecks occur naturally as a result of the fermentation process.

tempeh – straight from the packet

So there’s the science bit.

The first thing I need to say is that it can be hard to get hold of.  Far harder than Tofu, which is a shame, because it’s a very useful and versatile ingredient to have in a vegan repertoire. I like it very much.  It has an interesting texture, and is quite robust.  It soaks up flavoursome marinades in the same way as tofu, and can therefore play a part in many different styles of food.

Recently we  came across a small co-operative whole food shop in a tiny village in southern England, and they had some!  So I bought 6 blocks to freeze.

Further to my previous post :Egyptian Mezze, I thought I’d try a simple Egyptian stew that traditionally, is served with poached eggs baked in the stew. (Shakshouka)

I decided to replace the eggs with a slice of marinaded fried tempeh, and I think it was quite delicious, and so I made a blog of it.


The key to cooking tempeh, before you do anything else, is to relax it, in a nice hot bath 🙂

Place the slab of tempeh in a saucepan of water that has been brought to the boil, and then reduce the heat to absolute minimum, so it’s not even simmering, and leave the tempeh in it for 15-2o mins. Remove the tempeh from the pan, and pat dry with kitchen towel.

It is now ready for a marinade.

For this recipe, I sliced the 227gms. slab of tempeh (defrosted if necessary), in half, reserved half in tupperware and refrigerated for future use.  (Must be used within 3 days….mmm…I foresee  a tempeh baken sandwich in the morning ….yes! )

I then sliced the remaining half in half again, and then into four thin slices, by cutting through the middle of the two pieces sideways, as you would cut through a bread roll.  So I ended up with four thin square pieces, and half in reserve.

Ingredients for the marinade:

  • Juice of a lemon
  • 2 tbs.olive oil
  • 1tsp. coarse ground black pepper
  • 2tsps. smoked paprika
  • 3 tsps. ground cumin
  • 4-5 tbs. water
  • 1 tsp salt

Mix everything together and immerse the tempeh slices,cut side down, in the marinade.

Leave for 2-3 hours, or even overnight.


Paprika, Pepper and Tomato stew, a wonderful addition to this Egyptian-Style Mezze. 

egyptian-style mezze

(click image for link)



Serves 4

Ingredients:   Continue reading “Marinaded, fried Tempeh. Served in a spiced paprika pepper and tomato stew. A traditional Egyptian Stew.”

All About Beans, Bread, Burgers and Patties, Condiments, Salads, Vegan Main Dishes, Vegan Snacks

Echoes of Ancient Egypt. Broad Bean Patties with pitta bread, minted cucumber salad, pickled cucumbers and spinach. . . . Vegan . . .

broad bean patties + pitta + cucumber salad+ pickled cucumbers + spinach ribbons

Despite controversy, there seems to be reasonable certainty that falafel may well have originated in Egypt, and were made using Fava Beans. Fava Beans are a type of Broad Bean, and are grown in many countries.

In fact, I’ve just sown some at my allotment, as certain varieties over-winter happily, and beat the dreaded blackfly that make an appearance in June. ( But that’s another story).

Another random fact: according to Wikipedia: the word falafel originates from “The word Falāfil (Arabic: فلافل‎), which is the plural of Filfil (فلفل), meaning “pepper”.

Below is my recipe  for Broad Bean Patties, with lots of delicious ingredients and plenty of coarse ground black pepper.  They don’t need veganising, as they always have been, and always will be: vegan.

I love a mezze; so many different flavours and tastes to conjure with so I decided to accompany the patties with my very own homemade pitta bread (which puts all shop-bought pitta in the shade, believe me), a cucumber salad in a minted tahini yogurt dressing, finely chopped spinach, and sharp cucumber pickles.

A feast of greenness.

filled pitta bread

Unlike some versions of Fava Falafel, I have used frozen baby broad beans, primarily for convenience.



Serves 4

Ingredients:   Continue reading “Echoes of Ancient Egypt. Broad Bean Patties with pitta bread, minted cucumber salad, pickled cucumbers and spinach. . . . Vegan . . .”