Vegetable Jambalaya

Just want the recipe? Click here.

I apologise for my absence and lack of recipes, but it’s just been one of those weeks, and I haven’t felt up to cooking or baking. I won’t divulge details, however let’s just say that appearances have been deceiving, and I have been extremely lucky to have been supported by such strong female friends (hmmm, I wonder if you can guess what I’m talking about). It hasn’t all been negative though, my course mates and I have become a lot closer this week, and I received praise for my dissertation, being told I should speak at a conference, how very exciting!

So ye, due to how hectic and unbalanced my life has been the past few weeks, I haven’t had time to cook (boo L), but now I have 3 weeks off for Easter, and I don’t have any housemates to keep me entertained, so lots of new recipes will be getting posted!

I’m going to start with this jambalaya. It’s a variation on a recipe my mam used to cook for me when I lived at home, and I just adore how simple and cheap it is. Plus, it lasts for days! You can tweak it to your own palette, and just use whatever leftover veg you may have in your cupboard. This is definitely one of my go to recipes, and I hope it becomes one of yours too!

Serves: 4

Calories per portion: 174 Kcal

Carbs: 32.1g

Protein: 6.1g

Fat: 2.2g

Ingredients

  • 300g rice
  • 3 small peppers
  • 1/2 bell pepper
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 400g tinned tomato
  • 125g sweetcorn
  • 50g petits pois (peas)
  • 500ml vegetable stock
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp chilli flakes
  • black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 1 tsp garlic powder

Instructions

  1. Finely chop the onion and peppers, and add to the oil in a large pan on medium heat.
  2. Once the onions and peppers have softened, add the stock, sweetcorn, peas and tinned tomatoes, stirring gently to mix.
  3. Add the rice, and begin to add the spices (this bit is again up to you, add or more or less to personal taste).
  4. Add a pan lid and gently simmer for 20 minutes, stirring every occasionally to stop the rice from sticking. It is now ready to serve, I like to enjoy by adding cracked black pepper or nutritional yeast on top.

Raspberry and Coconut ‘Cheesecake’ (Gluten Free)

Just want the recipe? Click here.

I love cheesecake. I love the smooth and creamy texture of the cheese combined with the crunchy biscuit base. I love the way it melts in my mouth, and how satisfied I feel when I eat it. I love the variety of flavours, from mixed berry, to chocolate, to salted caramel. Yes, my love for cheesecake is incomparable. But, as a vegan, how was I ever going to satisfy my cheesecake needs?!

And that was when I discovered ‘cashew-cheesecake’. I was baffled, how on earth could nuts be formed into a cheese like texture, surely that wasn’t possible? Of course, I was wrong. Using one of the many recipes available on-line, I made my own vanilla ‘cheesecake’, not so long after I chose the vegan lifestyle, actually. When I initially started blending the soaked nuts I was incredibly dubious, especially as the blender just seemed to be forming broken up nuts, and not the creamy texture I was wondering. But lo and behold, after roughly 5 minutes I had exactly what I was looking for! And it tasted bloody good! (friends and family agreed, and nobody would believe the ingredients).

So that brings me to the recipe for you all today. I had an excellent trip to Makro (a cash and carry for those of you who don’t recognise the name) with a friend, where I purchased an insane amount dates and cashew nuts. I had a cheesecake craving, and it needed to be satisfied!

I had a huge bag of frozen raspberries in the freezer, and wasn’t fancying just a plain vanilla cheesecake, so I had a little think as to what flavour combinations I could try. Then I saw I still had a load of dessicated coconut left over from my loaf, and realised that it would perfectly compliment the raspberry (oh  and if you hadn’t already realised, I LOVE coconut). The recipe worked, and produced the most gorgeous coloured ‘cheese’. Hoorah!

I now have 3/4 of this cheesecake sat in my fridge, and it’s taking all of my willpower not to demolish it all. Must. Resist.

Serves: 12

Calories per portion: 431kcal

Carbs: 33.3g

Protein: 9.5g

Fat: 31.5g

Ingredients

  • 500g cashews
  • 100g walnuts
  • 30 dates
  • 150g of frozen raspberries
  • 5 tbsp coconut oil
  • 100ml water
  • 2tbsp golden syrup (optional extra really, just makes it a bit sweeter)
  • 25g dessicated coconut
  • dash of lemon juice

Method

  1. Soak cashews overnight in a bowl of water, or alternatively, soak for an hour or so in boiling water.
  2. Line a 20cm cake tin (or whatever size really, it’ll just make the base thicker/thinner). Add walnuts and dates to a food processor and blend until a fine meal is produced. Pour into tin and press down to create an even and combined base. Place in freezer.
  3. Add cashews, water, oil, lemon juice and golden syrup to a food processor and blend on a high speed until a smooth consistency is formed. This may take a good few minutes, depending on the make/quality of your food processor or blended.
  4. Once your desired consistency is reached, slowly added the raspberries and coconut, and blend until the mixture is a pinkish colour.
  5. Take the base out of the freezer and pour the mixture on top, smoothing it out with a spatula or palette knife. Add more raspberries and coconut to decorate.
  6. Freeze for at least 6 hours. When needed, take out of the freezer and either leave on side or place in fridge.