Red Lentil, Quinoa and Mixed Nut Roast (v)

I love a good nut roast. No, really I do. And I’d much rather see this on a pub/cafe menu for Sunday lunch than some god awful filo pastry thing filled with a suspicious cat sick looking filling going soggy in the gravy. Bleck. So, in an attempt to use up all those itty bitty packs of nuts lurking at the back of my cupboard I concocted this and it was a triumph (well we all enjoyed it and it was delicious cold the next day in sandwiches!).

For 8-10 slices you need
1/2 cup red lentils
1/2 cup quinoa
2 tsp vegan stock powder
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tbsp olive oil
1 cup mixed nuts (I used walnuts, peanuts and cashews)
1 cup fresh breadcrumbs
2 tsp marmite
2 tsp vecon stock paste
1 tbsp soya sauce
2 tbsp tomato ketchup
1 tbsp hendersons relish/veggie worcester sauce
freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp pine nuts

Begin by placing the lentils, quinoa and stock powder in a pan and covering with exactly 1.5 cups water (you’re going to cook them by absorption). Bring to the boil, stir, and then reduce the heat as low as it will go and cover with a lid. Cook for 10-15 mins until the lentils are just done. Turn off the heat and leave to steam for a further 10 mins or so.

Meanwhile, fry the onion and garlic until soft. Chop the nuts until half are quite finely chopped and the other half are a little more chunky.

Combine everything in a mixing bowl, apart from the pine nuts, and mix thoroughly. Add a few more breadcrumbs (or even a crumbled weetabix or two!) if the mixture looks too sloppy. You want it to the reasonably firm but not too stiff.

Scrape out into a pyrex dish and smooth down. Sprinkle over the pine nuts and bake in a moderate (180 degree) oven for about 45 mins until it’s crispy on top. Serve with the usual roast dinner accompaniments. I also like mine with lashings of cranberry or mint sauce. And don’t forget the gravy! Any leftover roast will keep for a few days in the fridge and makes a fab sarnie filling or it will also freeze well. I find it’s worth making a large batch and freezing one half for another day.

Quinoa with Broccoli and Tofu (v)

I had lunch with my lovely lovely friend today and made this for us to share 🙂 It was pronounced delicious. Result 😉

For 4-6 portions (depending on greed) you need:
1 cup white quinoa
2 cups water
1 tsp vegan stock powder
1 packet tenderstem broccoli, trimmed and cut into bite sized pieces
1 tbsp dark soya sauce
1 tbsp mirin
1 tsp rice wine vinegar
1 tsp sesame oil
6 spring onions, trimmed and sliced
1 packet smoked and marinated tofu (taifun is best imho)

Place the quinoa, water and stock in a lidded pan. Bring to the boil and cook for about 8 mins. Add the broccoli and turn off the heat (keep covered). Leave to steam for a further 15 mins. Add everything else and scoff. Simples. Delish.

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.

Marmite and Vegetable Stew (v)

Yes this is another variation on my favourite theme of the moment: slow cooker magic! But honestly, there’s nothing nicer than coming home after a bloody long day to a hot, filling meal. Bliiiiiiiiis…

For 4-6 portions you need:
2 medium onions, chopped
1 leek, sliced
4 carrots, chopped
1/2 swede, diced
1 turnip, diced
2 sweet potatoes, diced
1/2 cup each of red lentils, pearl barley and quinoa
1.5 litres boiling water
1 tbap marmite

Bung everything into the slow cooker and leave on low for 8-10 hours. Eat. Sigh. Feel happy.

Quinoa Salad with Greens (v)

A variation on the puy lentil and quinoa salad, but different enough to warrant its own entry. This is another vegan salad that makes a perfect lunch 🙂

For 2 portions you need:
1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
1 leek, finely shredded
2 tsp vegan stock powder
2 tbsp each of mirin and soya sauce
1 tbsp rice vinegar
1/2 packet purple sprouting broccoli
1 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
1 pack marinated tofu chunks/ 1/2 pack marinated tofu block

Begin by placing the leek, quinoa, stock and water in a pan and bringing to the boil. Cook, covered, for 10mins, add the broccoli and then turn off the heat and leave to steam for 20 mins. Add the remaining ingredients before placing into tubs for lunch the next day.

Puy Lentil and Quinoa Salad with Semi Dried Tomatoes (v)

A vegan powerhouse of a lunch this. And mighty tasty too 😉

For 2 generous lunch portions you need:
1/2 cup puy lentils
1/2 cup quinoa
1/2 tub semi dried tomatoes
2 tsp vegan stock powder
1 onion, diced
1 clove garlic, crushed
juice 1/2 lemon
2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper
1 tbsp balsamic syrup
1/2 bag purple sprouting broccoli

Place the garlic, onion, lentils and quinoa in a pan with 2 1/2 cups water and the stock powder. Bring to the boil and simmer for 15-20 mins till the lentils are tender but still have bite and the quinoa is cooked.

Meanwhile roughly chop the broccoli, stalks, leaves and all. Once the lentils and quinoa are nearly done (so after about 10-15 mins) add the broccoli to the pan with a lid and steam cook until everything is tender. Remove from the heat and add the remaining ingredients. Season to taste. Place in a tub and leave to marinate overnight before scoffing at work the next day and making all your work colleagues green with envy mwahahaha…

Spiced Quinoa with Almonds and Feta

Another @bbcgoodfood recipe. This is lush for lunches as it’s great made ahead and left to develop. It keeps for a couple of days.

For 4 portions you need:
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp tumeric
300g quinoa, rinsed
50g toasted flaked almonds
100g feta, crumbled
handful parsley, chopped
juice 1/2 lemon.
600ml stock

Heat the oil in a pan and add the spices. Heat gently. Add the quinoa and toast till it pops. Add the stock, bring to the boil and cover. Simmer for about 10 mins till the quinoa has cooked. Leave to steam for another 30 mins or so. Stir through the parsley, feta and almonds.

Quiona and Tofu Salad

This is disgustingly good for you, so only eat when in a health food phase!

For 4 portions you need:
1 pack marinated tofu
1/2 cup red quiona
1/2 cup white quinoa
1 tsp stock powder
1 small red onion, diced
1 tomato, diced
juice 1/2 lemon
2 tbsp soya sauce
2 tbsp avocado oil
2 tbsp pumpkin seed oil
2 tbsp mirin
1/2 cup sprouted peas
1/2 pack rocket
1/2 pack baby rocket
1/2 pack leek and alfafa sprouted mix
1/2 yellow pepper, chopped

Cook the quiona: place the quionas in a pan with the stock and 2 cups water. Boil and simmer for 10 mins then cover with a lid and leave to absorb the water for another 15 mins or so.

Meanwhile slice the tofu, chop the veggies and then add everything bar the alfafa/leeks, rocket and spinach to the quinoa. Mix well.

Serve on a bed of greens topped with some chopped pepper. Eat and feel disgustingly smug that you’ve been this healthy. Resist urge to binge on chocolate biscuits and crisps an hour later.

Quinoa and Carrot Pilaf

An nice alternative to rice 🙂

For 2-3 servings you need:
1 cup quinoa
2 cups water
2 large carrots, diced small
1 large onion, diced small
1 tbsp oil
1 tsp stock powder

Sautee the onion in the oil and after about 5 mins add the carrot. After another 5 mins add the qunoa, fry for a bit and then add the water. Add the stock and cover with a lid. Bring to the boil and simmer for 10 mins. Turn off the heat and let the quinoa steam for a further 10 mins. Don’t worry if there is some excess liquid in the bottom of the pan. It’s also nice cold as a salad.

Steamed Quinoa

I love quinoa, it’s the nutty taste and more substantial mouth feel than cous cous that I think is the winner. Plus it’s one of those foods that makes you feel healthy when you eat it, even if you’ve just binged on choccy biccies beforehand 😉

I prefer to steam mine and follow this rule of thumb for perfect results every time:
Measure 1 cup quinoa into a lidded pan, add just under 2 cups water and a tsp vegan stock powder. Bring to the boil, reduce heat and simmer for 10 mins. Turn off the heat and leave to absorb the steam for a further 10-15 mins (you can leave it like this for ages too if you need to).

To serve use like rice or any other grain, or it’s also nice dressed with oil and/or vinegar/lemon juice. This amount will do 2 meals, so add more in the same ratio for more people/additional days.