Vegetable Paella with Spicy Tomato Sauce (v)

I’m not sure this is authentically paella because it uses easy cook short grain rice. But it’s easy and quick to make and is the first recipe/rice combo I have found that actually works without producing a claggy sticky mess or under cooked rice. It’s also vegan and a brilliant way to boost your veg intake. It’s based on a Rose Elliott recipe for Red Beans with Brown Rice and Vegetables in her fabulous New Complete Vegetarian Cookbook (p246).

For 4 portions you need
2 onions, chopped
4 tbsp olive oil
350g easy cook short grain rice
1 tsp tumeric
850ml veg stock
salt and pepper
A mix of vegetables e.g. we used 1 large carrot, diced, 2 sticks celery, sliced, and a pack of stir fry tenderstem broccoli, baby sweet corn, mange tout and pak choi.
1 can drained kidney beans

Spicy Tomato Sauce
1 can tomatoes
1 clove garlic
1 tsp sugar
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper
1 tsp dried chilli flakes

Start by sauteeing the onion, carrots and celery in the oil, covered. I like to use a large lidded non stick frying pan for this recipe.

After about 10 mins add the rice and garlic and stir well. Add the stock and beans and bring to the boil. Cover with a lid and leave to simmer for 10 mins. Stir then add the broccoli and corn and cover again for a further 5 mins. Check the rice is done and if it is, add the remaining veg and take off the heat and leave covered to steam for a final 5 mins.

For the sauce put everything in a pan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 mins. Puree in the pan with a stick blender and leave to one side.

Serve the finished rice with the tomato sauce. Leftovers are delicious cold or used as a stuffing for peppers etc.

Umami Noodles with Peas and Courgettes (v)

I adore the dark, salty, savoury magic that is umami. I can eat marmite from a jar I like it so much. Ditto soya sauce. This speedy noodle dish blends savoury soya sauce with black bean sauce for a really satisfying salty umami kick. The peas give a nice sweetness to balance the overall flavour of the dish. Yes I am aware that writing a description in that way makes me sound like a poncy twat. Care much lol?!

For one person you need:
1 bundle soba noodles (or eggs ones if you are not vegan)
1/2 onion, roughly chopped
1 courgette cut into chunks
1/4 cup frozen peas
2 tbsp dark soya sauce
2 tbsp black bean sauce
splash mirin
1 tsp vegetable oil

Cook the noodles in water and drain once done. Meanwhile fry the onion in the oil and add the courgette and peas. Once the noodles are cooked add to the vegetables and add the mirin, soya sauce and black bean sauce. Cook till warmed through and serve.

Quinoa with Steamed Vegetables and Peanut Sauce (v)

I was craving satay sauce today and also had a selection of pathetic looking vegetables to use up in the fridge. The quinoa is quick to cook and makes a nice change from rice or noodles.

For 2 people you need:
1/2 cup quinoa
1 cup boiling water
1/4 tsp vegan stock powder

Peanut Sauce
1/4 jar smooth peanut butter
1 small can coconut cream
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 chilli, finely chopped
1/2 tsp dried chilli flakes
2 tbsp soya sauce
1 tbsp mirin
2 tbsp medium sherry
2 tsp chinese vinegar

Vegetables of your choice to steam (I had asparagus, sugar snap peas and chinese leaf which I left raw)

Place the quinoa, stock powder and water in a lidded pan. Bring to the boil, simmer for 5-10 mins and then turn off the heat and leave to steam for a further 5-10 mins.

Place all the sauce ingredients in a pan and heat, mixing well. Do not allow it to boil or the fat will separate, bleck.

Steam the vegetables. Serve and enjoy.

Baked Mixed Vegetable and Cheese Frittata

This is baked in the oven which means there’s less chance of the bottom burning before the top is cooked and also saves having to faff about with hob and grill and flipping over the half cooked product. Use whatever vegetables you fancy. This is what I had lying about the flat.

For 6-8 portions you need:
4 eggs
1 cup grated chedder
1/2 cup frozen sweetcorn
1/2 cup frozen peas
1 orange pepper, diced
1 onion, chopped
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
large handful fresh chives and garlic chives, finely chopped
1/2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper

Fry the onion in the oil for 5-10 mins till softened. Add the pepper, sweetcorn and peas and cook for a further 5 mins. Meanwhile beat the eggs with the chives and season. Once the vegetables are cooked, tip into a silicon cake tin, pour over the eggs and cheese and mix around to distribute evenly. Top with the tomatoes. Bake in a moderate oven for about 20-30 mins till lightly set but don’t overcook or it’ll go rubbery. You can eat this hot, room temp or cold and it’s perfect for a picnic.

Cheat’s Curry with Random Ingredients (v)

I love the Shana brand of ready meal packet curries. They are authentic Indian curries which are probably dreadful on the ethical scale as they’ll be air freighted :/ but they are as good as a takeaway on a night where you have no time. Last night was one of those nights…

For one person you need:
1 packet Shana Madras curry sauce
1 leftover cooked vegan sausage, cut into slices
1 cup random cooked vegetables (I had broccoli, brussels sprouts, frozen peas and sweetcorn)

Place the sauce in a pan and add everything else along with a dash of water. Heat. Serve with oven chips (waaaaay classy bird. That’s me :D). Dinner in 10 mins.

Blackbean Fried Rice with Peas (v)

I left my lunch on the counter in my flat today. And had back2back meetings all day so didn’t have time to eat much. Cue being starving like a starving thing as soon as I got home… This was super speedy thanks to there being some leftover rice in the fridge.

For one person you need:
1/2 jar blackbean sauce
1 cup cooked rice
1/4 cup peas
1 onion chopped
1/2 red chilli, chopped
1 tsp oil

Fry the onion in the oil for 3-4 mins. Add everything else and cook for a further 5 mins till piping hot. Scoff. Feel better.

Coconut Broth with Citrus and Noodles (v)

Yes, another variation on the theme but this was delicate and spicy and sour and hot and basically delicious which is why it deserves being blogged. The addition of frozen kaffir lime leaves and lemon grass helped to lift the flavours more than freeze dried.

For 2-3 portions you need:
1 bundle ramen noodles
1 can coconut milk
1 small can cocomut cream
1 litre vegetable stock
4 cloves garlic, sliced
3 inch piece of ginger, grated
2 red chillies, sliced
small bunch corriander, roughly chopped
2 tbsp mirin
2 tbsp soya sauce
1 onion, sliced
1 large carrot, sliced
1/2 cup peas
2 pak choi, shredded
1 tbsp frozen kaffir lime leaves
4 pieces frozem lemon grass
juice of 2 limes
6 spring onions, chopped

Place everything apart from the spring onions in a large pan and gently heat. Cook for 1-2 mins and then serve topped with the spring onions.

Number 86 aka Special Vegetable and Tofu Chow Mein (v)

This is quick, easy and tasty. What more could you want…!

For 3-4 people you need
2 bundles noodles (soba, udon or egg if not vegan)
1 pack marinated tofu
1 onion, sliced
1 carrot, sliced
1/2 pack baby corn, halved
1/2 pack snow peas, halved
1 jar chow mein sauce (yes yes I know…)
4 spring onions, whites cut on the diagonal and the green bits sliced
handful corriander, roughly chopped
2 tbsp soya sauce
2 cups beansprouts

Cook the noodles as per the instructions. Meanwhile stirfry the onion for 2-3 mins then add the other veggies (apart from the beansprouts) and tofu and the sauce. Cover with a lid and steam cook for 2 mins. Drain the noodles and add to the pan along with the tofu. Serve in bowls topped with the green bits of spring onion, corriander and the soya sauce.

Pasta with Peas and Pesto

Or the three p’s… I’d had a really long day yesterday and a really long commute and needed something ultra fast to fuel me and soak up the LARGE glass of wine I downed upon arrival home 😉

For one hungry person you need:
100g spaghetti
1/3 tub fresh pesto
1/2 cup frozen peas

Cook the pasta. 3 mins before it’s done add the peas to the water. Drain. Toss through the pesto. Eat. Smile. Relax.

Speedy pasta with peas and marmite (v)

Ok, this is a cheat recipe really, and it’s a variation on Nigella’s marmite pasta. But it’s quick and tasty…

For lne person you need:
75g pasta
1/2 cup peas
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1 tbsp marmite
2 spring onions, chopped
Grated Parmesan if you’re not vegan.

Cook the pasta. Meanwhile melt the marmite in another pan with the onions and peas. Add some water to the pan to help loosen it. Drain the pasta and mix through the sauce. Top with parsley and cheese (if using) and scoff. Yum.