All About Beans, Vegan, Vegan Main Dishes

Feijoada. Brazilian Black Bean Stew.

This is a delicious, vegan version of a hearty black bean stew, courtesy of Brazil.  Packed with rich flavours: the warm smokiness of smoked paprika,  the tartness of tomatoes and the sweetness of sweet potato and mango.

As long as you’ve got some pre-cooked black beans (I used Turtle Beans) to hand, this dish is easy to put together and doesn’t take too long to cook.

I love these rich bean stews: check out my category ‘All About Beans’ for bean recipes from around the world.

Hope you enjoy!

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Feijoada.  Brazilian Black Bean Stew.

Serves 3-4

Ingredients and prep:   Continue reading “Feijoada. Brazilian Black Bean Stew.”

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All About Beans, Gluten-Free, Mediterranean Dishes, Vegan

Celery and Butterbean Gratin.

The star of this dish is a versatile Mediterranean-style sauce …. using preserved lemons.

Gratin originated in French cuisine, and traditionally uses vegetables cooked in a cream sauce, and topped with crispy brown crust, which can be toasted under the grill.

A while ago I made a jar of preserved lemons, however, you can buy jars of preserved lemons in many supermarkets these days.

You could try a variety of vegetables using this sauce recipe, for example: potatoes with leeks, or asparagus and mushrooms.

I chose celery this time.  You know …. Celery …. often found limp and languishing at the back of the salad drawer in the fridge.  Forgotten, underused, and annoyingly stringy. 😦

So I thought I’d give celery a bit of a boost.  It does, after all, apparently have all sorts of super health benefits ( try googling it for more info.).

Having chosen celery, I then thought that big, fat, melty butterbeans would make an excellent contrast for the celery… and it is without doubt a good combination.  Definitely a keeper.

So, back to the sauce: this is my third try at a lemony gratin sauce, and now I think I’ve got it right, preserved lemons really are something to shout about!  This would make a fab. sauce for pasta too.  Preserved lemons have a beautifully soft lemon flavour, mellow and gentle …very different from using fresh lemons. Remember to remove the pulp and rinse the peel thoroughly.

Here’s my recipe to have a go at making preserved lemons yourself: (click image for link)

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CELERY AND BUTTERBEAN GRATIN

depending on how hungry you are and what you’re serving with this dish…

it will make 2-4 servings

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INGREDIENTS:   Continue reading “Celery and Butterbean Gratin.”

All About Beans, Gluten-Free, Vegan, Vegan Main Dishes, Vegan on a Shoestring

Rice and Beans Jamaican Style.

This is simple …. and simply delicious.  Comfort food at its very best.

Mellow, warming and nutritious. I love it 🙂

It’s all in the flavour: a great spice combination

and the mellow creaminess of coconut milk.

I used pea beans,  (I grew them myself 🙂 ) but you can use kidney beans too.

You can buy ready-made Creole Spice, but I made a batch from scratch…

There are endless variations of this supremely wonderful dish … and here’s mine…

So.  Without more ado, let’s get on with it…

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JAMAICAN-STYLE RICE AND BEANS

Serves 4 amply

Cook’s note: The traditional way to make this dish is to use dried beans, and pre-soak the beans for at least 24 hours before you want to cook. (Change the water once or twice during soaking).

Creole Spice Ingredients:    Continue reading “Rice and Beans Jamaican Style.”

All About Beans, Gluten-Free, Soups, Vegan, Vegan Main Dishes

Shchi

A Russian style soup with many variations, which, according to Wikipedia, dates back to the 9thC.

Wikipedia: Shchi is a traditional soup of Russia where it has been known as far back as the 9th century, soon after cabbage was introduced from Byzantium. Its popularity in Russia originates from several factors. Shchi is relatively easy to prepare; it can be cooked with or without various types of meat; and it can be frozen and carried as a solid on a trip to be cut up when needed. Finally, it was noticed that most people do not get sick of shchi and can eat it daily. As a result, by the 10th century shchi became a staple food of Russia, and another popular saying sprang from this fact: “Щи да каша — пища наша.” (Shchi da kasha — pishcha nasha “Shchi and kasha are our food”).

Based on the humble and beautiful cabbage, this is a recipe that inevitably has endless variations.

Here’s my vegan version.  Based on a traditional vegetable version, I’ve included Sauerkraut, which makes it Sour Shchi.

It’s one of those soups that matures with time, so, if you want to try it, don’t hesitate to make a big batch, as it tastes even better the next day.

Hope you enjoy!

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SHCHI

Serves 4 or more…

Ingredients:   Continue reading “Shchi”

All About Beans, Gluten-Free, Vegan, Vegan Main Dishes, Vegan on a Shoestring

Carroty Cottage Pie

Well.  It’s been ages.  My life seems to have taken a bit of a U-turn lately, away from blogging.  And I’ve really missed it, and all my blogging friends too.  I take my hat off (respect 🙂 ) to everyone who keeps their blog ticking over, because I can see how easy it is to let it slip.

Even so.  I’m still vegan….and I still think it’s the most important thing I do.   Christmas is coming, and I shudder to think of all the animals that will be killed to ‘celebrate’ the event…. so I’ve been thinking up a few  cruelty-free christmas dishes which will be coming soon…….

……and in the meantime, here’s my take on a winter-warming classic.  Cottage/shepherd’s pie.  Deliciously veganised.

My guess is everyone has some sort of recipe for this homely comforting dish: it’s versatile, adaptable to whatever you have in the veggie basket, and so easy to make vegan, gluten-free and very nutritious.  Here I use lots of carrots, spiced with all those flavourings that carrots love: ginger, garlic, coriander and cumin.  And, of course, a little bit of chilli.  The carrots are grated and combined with sliced sautéed mushrooms, amongst other things, which all in all, gives this pie some lovely textures.

Incidentally, for the mashed potato topping, I have included my latest favourite ingredient: oat crème frâiche.  I love it.

It’s now available in many UK supermarkets, and it gives the potato in this recipe a lovely, creamy, tang…. but you can always add non-dairy cream or milk instead.

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Hope you enjoy.

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VEGAN COTTAGE PIE

Serves 6

Ingredients: Continue reading “Carroty Cottage Pie”

All About Beans, Mediterranean Dishes, Vegan, Vegan Main Dishes, Vegan on a Shoestring

Andalusian Bean Stew

OK … I know … another bean stew … but there are just so many possibilities 🙂

This one is distinctly rustic in character … lots of rough chopping … and strong flavours.

Traditionally  it includes chorizo …which I don’t do … so instead I’ve added tempeh, marinaded in tomato puree and tamari, and lightly sautéed in olive oil.  It’s a hearty warming stew, and you can practically throw it together.  So not much faff!

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ANDALUSIAN BEAN STEW

Serves 4

Ingredients: Continue reading “Andalusian Bean Stew”

All About Beans, Breakfast, Growing things, Preserving, Vegan

Jam…. Pickle… Passata…. it’s that time of year again ….

Izzy wizzy let’s get bizzy 🐝 ✨

Greetings from a busy kitchen 💐 💕

I’ve been singularly failing to keep my blog going lately…and that’s because I’ve been madly busy harvesting and storing, preserving and pickling some of my homegrown fruit and vegetables. So cooking dinner has been taking a bit of a back seat!  Baked potatoes all round 😏

Here’s a taster of what’s been happening in my household lately… raspberry jam, cucumber pickle, roasted tomato and garlic passata and an almond vegan cheese made in honour of my delicious Italian tomatoes…… and some of the beans are air-drying for the winter …..

So. Where to start?

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ROASTED TOMATO AND GARLIC PASSATA

Ingredients: Continue reading “Jam…. Pickle… Passata…. it’s that time of year again ….”

All About Beans, Gluten-Free, Vegan, Vegan Main Dishes

Mexican Bean Stew

I’ve been crazy busy lately, and I’ve been needing serious sustenance… so what better than just another bowl of beans 😉 💚 There’s a recipe for a bowl of beans from just about every country in the world… along with endless regional variations and generational differences.  This is a Mexican recipe that uses gorgeous Ancho Chillies.  They’re not hot, but they’re fruity, mellow and warm.

I made a vat of this, because it’s delicious…and gets deliciouser and deliciouser with re-heating. ❤️

Everyone loves avocados these days, and I realise that here in the UK we’re just a little conservative about how we use them.  That could be because they’re expensive… and we can only imagine the joy of going into the backyard and picking a couple…. and then serving them with everything.  How good must that be💕

So I served this stew with a tomato salsa, white rice, and beautifully ripe avocados.

And it’s good.

Hope you enjoy ! 🌺

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MEXICAN BEAN STEW

for 6

Ingredients: Continue reading “Mexican Bean Stew”

All About Beans, Cook's Tales, Mediterranean Dishes, Vegan, Vegan Main Dishes, Vegan Quick Suppers

Italian Summer Vegetable and Flageolet Broth

‘Tis August…the silly season …and I’ve been away on high days and holidays …and taking a break from cooking …but not from eating 🍴… a girl’s always gotta eat! 😊

One of the places I visited was Brighton, a big seaside town on the southern coast of the UK…and I want to sing its praises as a vegan foodie heaven. 💚

Apart from lazing on the beach soaking up a little Vitamin D, and a trip to the theatre, I did very little in Brighton except eat. 😉 There’s so many vegan possibilities in Brighton to suit all budgets and tastes, I was overcome with an overwhelming desire to cram as many of them in as I could. 😏 So I did.  I stuck to what I like when I’m out and about – simple café and street food, but there are also some stunning looking vegan restaurants when you’re feeling in gourmet mood!

Many of the cafés are in a relatively small pedestrianised area called The Lanes where there are lots of little independent shops with a strong emphasis on vintage and unusual stuff from across the globe.  The only thing that deeply saddened me was several large piles of animal skins – being sold supposedly as ‘rugs’ …they seem to be everywhere at the moment???

😓

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I more or less lived in the Infinity Foods Cafe … I had an all day breakfast, scrambled tofu, rice and dal for lunch, peanut and maple cheesecake, AND lime and coconut cheesecake…… and  this glorious mezze …. not all in one sitting I hasten to add. 🙃

Vegan Mezze with gluten-free bread all for £9.00 …

I can’t tell you how much I relished this, after so many mediocre vegan options I’ve had to put up with when eating out… Brighton was simply a joy…and I made the most of it. Yay! 💚

Wild Cherry Vegan Ice Cream (with vegan cone)

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‘Infinity Foods’ also has a shop, where I bought a range of vegan cheeses (including vegan parmesan – used in the recipe below), and the best gluten-free bread I’ve ever tasted which is baked fresh daily…..and a lot more besides…

…and no I’m not being paid to write this …but I’m very happy to recommend them 💕

And there’s a vegan festival in Brighton in September….worth a visit ….

🍃

Back home the courgettes in my vegetable garden have been going insane, and lots of my long pod beans have reached flageolet stage, and the fact is, it’s actually really nice to come back to some home-cooking in a simple form, with this summer vegetable and flageolet broth, using mainly homegrown veg. and simple Italian flavourings.  (You can easily find all these ingredients in the shops).

There is something deeply comforting about a bowl of vegetables and beans… perfectly flavoured…..  that cannot be denied!

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ITALIAN SUMMER VEGETABLE AND FLAGEOLET BROTH

Serves 4

Ingredients: Continue reading “Italian Summer Vegetable and Flageolet Broth”

All About Beans, Cooking for One, Gluten-Free, Mediterranean Dishes, Vegan, Vegan Snacks

Mushrooms and Baby Broad Beans in a Garlic, White Wine and Cream Sauce.

This is an easy and delicious little recipe born of the need to do something with my harvest of broad beans. They’re late this year because of the weather but they’re now coming fast.  I love them.  And they’re so easy to blanch and freeze.  My garlic crop was good this year too 🙂

The sauce is french-inspired, has few ingredients and is creamy without the cholesterol 🙂 .  This dish would be great with mashed potatoes or as a posh snack on toast, or fab. with garlic bread!   Trés Français!

Quick and simple to make.  If you prefer not to use wine, then try lemon juice or cider vinegar with some vegetable stock to give the sauce a tang.

Certified GF cornflour/cornstarch will make this dish absolutely gluten-free.

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Hope you like 🙂

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MUSHROOMS AND BABY BROAD BEANS IN A GARLIC, WHITE WINE AND CREAM SAUCE.

 for 1-2

Ingredients: Continue reading “Mushrooms and Baby Broad Beans in a Garlic, White Wine and Cream Sauce.”