Monday, 18 April 2022

Vegan Chin Chin



I was born in East Africa and African cuisine is very close to my heart. Cassava, plantain, matoke, makai (corn) are just a few of the vegetables I love cooking with. The cuisine is a mix of spicy, savoury and sweet flavours.

Cooking African dishes brings back childhood memories so I was really excited to receive a copy of African Twist a collection of plant based recipes with an African twist written by Maggie Ogunbanwo and Huw Jones.

The book is divided into 4 sections, Starters and Soups, Mains, Desserts and Party Favourites. The selection of recipes are all vegan and the variety is super. I particularly liked the chilli flavoured with couscous and grilled vegetables, coconut rice with papaya and the plantain curry. I recreated all these recipes and they all turned out delicious. The desserts were very unusual such as the plantain loaf, banfora and chin chin a type of sweet doughnut.The aubergine dip and the ginger spritzer with pineapple was really refreshing.

The recipes are easy to follow and the illustrations are beautiful. The recipes are well laid out and the book is a nice compact size that is perfect for any kitchen shelf. You can purchase the book from Graffeg

I spent a lot of time looking through the book and I picked so many favorites, finally I decided to make the Chin Chin, it is a Nigerian street food and party snack which is made especially during Ramadan and Christmas. Chin chins are diamond shaped deep friend little doughnut type bites that are totally moreish.



I followed the Chin Chin recipe in the book, The chin chins turned out absolutely delectable.





The book is so lovely I really enjoyed cooking from it, as always I love giving my readers the opportunity to try products I review. I have two copies of the African Twist Plant based recipes book to giveaway.

How to enter:

Answer the mandatory question to open the bonus entries.

 Rules:
This giveaway is open to all readers over 18 who live in the UK.
Giveaway closes 3rd May  2022 12 am
The winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter (which uses random.org) and announced on this page.

Prize:   2 x African Twist Plant Based Recipe Books (One per winner)
Simplyfood is hosting this giveaway in collaboration with Graffeg. Their decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. They reserve the right to withdraw the competition at any time should any unforeseen circumstances arise, in case that the prize is not available a similar prize of same value will be substituted.  No monetary compensation will be given.

Graffeg will be responsible for sending out the prize to the winner, by entering you are **consenting** to share your address for the prize to be sent and be contacted by email to notify you if you have won the prize. 

Please note to be complaint with the new GDPR rules by entering the giveaway you are consenting to allow simplyfood to contact you if you win the prize and to share your details with Graffeg  so that you can be sent your prize. Your data will NOT be used for any other marketing purposes.

All entries will be verified, failure to follow instructions correctly will result in participants being disqualified. Please do not cheat.

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Sunday, 6 February 2022

Veggie Rice with Lentils- Chuti Khichdi



Rice is a staple ingredient in my pantry. It can be cooked in so many different ways
This delicious one pot veggie rice with lentils also known in Gujarati cuisine as Chuti Khichdi is really flavorsome and is packed with lots of veggies and lentils to make it healthy and perfect to serve with raita, I make this often when I want comfort food or I am in a hurry where I only need to cook one dish that is a complete meal on its own.


What is Chuti Khichdi?


Khichdi is savoury rice porridge usually made with short grain rice and moong dhal (lentils) and flavoured with spices. Often a mixture of vegetables are added to it to make it a complete meal. It is fairly gluninous in texture due to the use of the short grain rice. Chuti Khichdi is slightly different, it is made with long grain rice and the rice grains are separate more like a pilaf. In Gujarat, the rice is commonly mixed with Tuver Dhal (split pidgeon peas) and cooked with diced vegetables and spices. Again this is one pot meal that is just delicious with a Cucumber Raita, some pickle and pappodams.

What Vegetables can you add to this Chuti Khichdi?


You can add any seasonal vegetables but they work better if they are all cut in the same size.

What is a one pot meal?


One pot meals are dishes that are a complete meal in them selves. They don't need any other accompaniments. These dishes are time saving and great when you want a healthy and nutritious dish in a hurry.

Some examples of one pot dishes are:


Achari Khichdi

Chinese style fried rice

Cheesy Pasta Bake

Aubergine Bake

Dietary Tips:

  • Vegetarian
  • Vegan (Can be vegan if you omit the Ghee)
  • Gluten Free


Cooking Tips


To get perfectly cooked Rice use a ratio of 1-2 of rice and water. I always recommend using a shallow non stick pan with a lid to cook my rice dishes.






I used this Zyliss Cook Ultimate Pro Saute Pan which is made from hard anodized aluminium. This Swiss engineered pan has an alpine crystals non stick coating that is 8 times times tougher than any standard coating ensuring that nothing sticks. The pan heats up fast and ensures an even heat so that all food gets cooked evenly. the pan can be used on induction, gas, oven and is dishwasher safe too making it an excellent addition to any kitchen. You can purchase it from Zyliss.



Some tips when cooking the perfect khichdi:

  • Soak the rice and dhal this is a very important step.
  • Saute the onions before adding any thing else as they need to be soft.
  • Saute the rice and dhal to get a nice even coat of oil on them.


  • Once all the ingredients are added, add hot water to the rice and bring to a simmer.
  • Once water is simmering, cover and cook the khichdi. Do not open the lid during this cooking process.
  • Adding ghee during serving enhances the taste however to make the dish vegan you can omit it.


What type of lentils can you use?


I always favour Tuver dhal - pidgeon peas dhal, however you can use moong dhal, masoor dhal or even channa dhal in this recipe.







You can watch a step by step video of this recipe on my you tube channel:



Post In collaboration with @zylissofficial
Zyliss have been really generous and have agreed to send a pan to one lucky simplyf00d reader. 

How to enter:
Leave a blog post comment then open rafflecopter for more entries.
This giveaway is open to all readers over 18 who live in the UK.
Giveaway closes 18th February 2022 12 am
The winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter (which uses random.org) and announced on this page.

Prize:   1x Zyliss Cook Ultimate Pro Saute Pan
Simplyfood is hosting this giveaway in collaboration with Zyliss Official. Their decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. They reserve the right to withdraw the competition at any time should any unforeseen circumstances arise, in case that the prize is not available a similar prize of same value will be substituted.  No monetary compensation will be given.

Zyliss Official will be responsible for sending out the prize to the winner, by entering you are **consenting** to share your address for the prize to be sent and be contacted by email to notify you if you have won the prize. 

Please note to be complaint with the new GDPR rules by entering the giveaway you are consenting to allow simplyfood to contact you if you win the prize and to share your details with Zyliss Official so that you can be sent your prize. Your data will NOT be used for any other marketing purposes.

All entries will be verified, failure to follow instructions correctly will result in participants being disqualified. Please do not cheat.

 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, 24 December 2021

REAL Kombucha- Vegan Fermented sparkling Tea


The festive season has begun and we are all excited for the upcoming festivities and holidays. It starts to feel christmassy as soon we start choosing gifts, purchasing them and then spending an evening wrapping them. My favorite time is watching christmas television, enjoying a  drink and a mince pie whilst wrapping presents.


Being teetotaller I don't drink alcohol but that does not mean I can't enjoy a festive drink. I am sure many people like myself for various reasons, choose not to drink but would like to enjoy a celebratory drink. I would highly recommend a chilled glass of Real Kombucha vegan fermented sparkling tea. I am a tea lover so when I discovered these drinks I was intrigued to sample the different flavours. I was also excited that I could enjoy a drink, being assured that is is non alcoholic


What is REAL Kombucha?

REAL Kombucha is a non alcoholic fermented sparkling tea. It is brewed from handpicked loose tea from small gardens around the world. It is low in sugar, suitable for vegans and is the perfect substitute for sparkling wine. It pairs really well with different foods such as these Tandoori Cauliflower Bites, this delicious Vegetarian Paella or these Vegan Samosas.

How is Kombucha made?

Kombucha is thought to originate from China. It is made by adding yeast, sugar and specific bacteria  to black or green tea,The tea is ferment for a few days causing the bacteria and the yeast to form a film on the surface which is known as Scoby, This is used to ferment new batches of Kombucha. During the fermentation process Acetic acid is produced which makes the Kombucha carbonated. 

How to store the Kombucha?

Since Kombucha is a live product, it is best to store it in a cool environment at approximately 15-20 degrees C

These non alcoholic christmas drinks can be made in several different flavours to suit all palates. REAL Kombucha comes in three different flavours , they are Royal Flush, Dry Dragon and a  Limited Edition Iron Goddess 



Royal Flush, this is the first flush Darjeeling Tea which has aromatic notes of rhubarb and white peach, It's very refreshing and smooth on the palate. I enjoy this one with savoury dishes.

Dry Dragon, this is made from Dragon Well Green Tea, it is light and citrusy with nutty notes and perfect for enjoying with some nuts and snacks.



Iron Goddess, this is made from Tie Guan Yin Oolong Tea, the tea is really smooth with notes of honey, nuts and apricots. I love this tea as it really pairs well.with any sort of desserts.



This year I am also going to be serving these awesome teas with my Christmas meal and for the new year celebrations too. I can do this knowing that Kombucha is also very beneficial for good gut health too. You can purchase REAL  Kombucha from Kombucha UK. Have you tried Kombucha before, do share your thoughts in the comments below.




*Collaborative Post


Friday, 17 December 2021

Spanish Warm Courgette Salad


Spanish Warm Courgette Salad is a lovely and tasty salad that is delicious as main dish or as a side dish. Its packed with healthy ingredients such as courgettes, peppers, cucumber and tossed in olive oil and a crunchy topping of coarsely ground almonds.

What are Courgettes?

Courgettes are also known as Zucchini , they are available the whole year around but in abundance in the summer months. It is  part of the marrow family and also recognised as a summer squash. there are different varieties of courgettes , they come in long cylindrical shapes and round too, The courgettes come in the green variety as well as the yellow variety.

They can be eaten raw in salads and also can be baked, fried and cooked and added to sauces and soups. Zucchini is very versatile and although does not really have a strong favour of its own it is great to add to dishes as it takes on otHer flavours really well. It is really low in fat and cholesterol and has a good source of protein, vitamin A, C and K 

It is best to eat Zucchini that are young with very tender flesh as the more mature ones tend have a very spongy flesh and seeds. Occasionally tey can be bitter but this is rare.

What are Warm Salads?

Warm salads are vegetables that are only partly cooked and still retain their crunch. They are a nice alternative to raw salads especially in the winter months.

What can I substitute instead of Almonds?

You can add any kind of nut such as walnuts or cashew nuts, if you are allergic to nuts you can add pine nuts instead or sunflower seeds.

Dietary Tips

Vegan
Gluten free
Vegetarian

What other recipes can I make with Courgettes?


What not try these delicious Greek Fried Zucchini known as Kolokythakia Tiganita, This is a Greek appetiser dish that is  served in taverns. It is usually part of a meze  platter, served with tzatziki a cucumber yogurt sauce. 



I had this salad on a recent trip to Palma. I went to an Olive farm where they grow and harvest olives. I had the opportunity to sample their olive oils that they used to prepare the lunch dishes. Since I am a vegetarian the chef made me this warm courgette salad, it was so delicious that I had to recreate it at home. 


Coming back to this Spanish Warm Courgette Salad here is the complete recipe below. If you don't have the special courgette shredding/ julienne  knife you can grate the courgette instead.

 


Spanish Warm Courgette Saladhttps://youtu.be/UitTR5mAGlgA delicious warm salad packed with healthy vegetables and protein from the almonds.https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/img/a/AVvXsEjmLQZyumrmsCUW_rZ9tv_WvHxibtGaIKGhIGjqhaRAIkBNr1_BvtUl6n2MoOQc1jLTTwrifx9VWfngJKX2qKlmZD7y2sbT_IYSWpA2-6cy-XxSx5idsY55Q-mbuOoqATZedlPy4HyioFvnxV-jJMSrSyEe1R3Z3BoiOcxfhnQiT_er43nk2mFU5XTHCA=s320" width="320"2021-12-09
Yield: 2
Author: Nayna Kanabar
Spanish Warm Courgette Salad

Spanish Warm Courgette Salad

This delicious vegan and gluten free Spanish warm courgette salad is super delicious, healthy and full of delicious flavours.
Prep time: 10 MinCook time: 3 MinTotal time: 13 Min

Ingredients

  • 1 courgette
  • 50g Almonds
  • 50g Yellow Capsicum
  • 50g Orange Capsicum
  • 50g Cucumber
  • 2-3 Tbsp Olive oil (for whole recipe)
  • 6 Cherry Tomatoes
  • 1 Tbsp fresh Parsley finely chopped
  • 1/2 Tsp Salt
  • 1/4 Black Pepper
  • 1/4 Tsp Dried Mint
  • 1/4 Tsp Dried Oregano
  • 2 Cloves Garlic finely chopped
  • 2 Tbsps Lemon Juice

Instructions

  1. Coarsely grind the almonds
  2. Finely chop the garlic
  3. Finely chop the parsley
  4. Dice the yellow and orange peppers
  5. Dice the cucumber
  6. Julienne the courgettes
  7. In a pan add the oil and warm it up.
  8. Add the garlic and saute for a few seconds
  9. Add the courgettes and saute for 1 minute
  10. Add the peppers, tomatoes and saute for 1-2 minutes.
  11. Add the cucumber and toss together
  12. Add the ground almonds toss everything together.
  13. Add the salt, pepper, dried mint, dried oregano and lemon juice.
  14. Add the parsley
  15. Add a drizzle of olive oil
  16. Toss everything together, Serve the salad by drizzling some more olive oil and garnish with more parsley, ground almonds and a lemon wedge.

Notes:

You can substitute the Almonds with any other nuts.

Nutrition Facts

Calories

366.93

Fat (grams)

30.70

Sat. Fat (grams)

3.49

Carbs (grams)

20.76

Fiber (grams)

6.13

Net carbs

14.63

Sugar (grams)

9.52

Protein (grams)

8.54

Sodium (milligrams)

721.33

Cholesterol (grams)

0.00

The nutritional information provided is an approximation calculated by an online calculator. Please consult a professional dietitian for nutritional advice.

Did you make this recipe?
Tag @simplyf00d on instagram and hashtag it #cookwithsimplyf00d

Here is the video version of the recipe.
 

 
If you make this recipe don't forget to tag me @simplyf00d 
Do you have a favorite courgette recipe? Why not share it in the comments below.

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Monday, 20 September 2021

Peanut Butter Overnight Oats with Banana and Vegan Salted Caramel Sauce


Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.Eating a good breakfast keeps you going till lunch time without getting mid morning hunger pangs. It helps you to concentrate and keeps your blood sugar levels constant. Most people skip breakfast and grab a chocolate bar or a coffee on the way. This is really unhealthy and does not do your body any good. My go to breakfast for my family is overnight oats. 

What are overnight oats?

Overnight oats are a no cook method of making oatmeal. They are prepared overnight and generally consumed cold. They are time saving, quick and super healthy and as they can be prepared the night before they make the perfect on the go breakfast. You can add any toppings of your choice, the combinations re endless.

I always make a basic plain batch of overnight oats and then let my family choose their own favorite toppings to add to them. Before I share the recipe, I will answer some questions that are often asked about overnight oats.

What type of oats can you use ?

You can use rolled oats or gluten free oats



What type of milk can you use?

Any type of milk, full cream, skimmed, semi skimmed or plant based milk such as almond milk, hazelnut milk, coconut milk or soya milk

What toppings can you add ?

You can add fruits, nuts, sauces, seeds, syrups or just eat them plain.

What can I serve overnight oats in?

The best way to serve overnight oats is a screw top mason jar, however you can serve them in any type of container, there is no hard and fast rule.

Can I eat overnight oats cold or hot.

Normally they are eaten cold but there is no reason why you cannot warm them for a few seconds in the microwave, however I recommend you don't add yoghurt in the oats if you are going to warm the oats up. 

Are overnight oats unhealthy.

Overnight oats are not unhealthy if you keep your topping light. Of course if you overload the oats with sugary topping then they will be high in calories.

How can I make overnight oats gluten free and vegan?

You can use gluten free oats and plant based milk and yoghurts to make vegan and gluten free overnight oats.



In this recipe, I am making peanut butter overnight oats with banana and vegan salted caramel sauce. I made the peanut butter in my froothie Optimum 9200 blender and the vegan salted caramel sauce was sent to me by the Bad Brownie 




The Vegan Salted Caramel sauce had a lovely texture and complimented the oats and banana combination really well.



The Vegan Salted Caramel sauce is really versatile, it can be added as a topping for oats, ice cream, porridge, fruits, brownies, cupcakes and cookies too.


You can batch makes these and keep in the fridge for a couple of days. I keep mine in individual serving mason jars so that my family can take one to work, school and college and can be eaten on the go. Just attach a spoon to the side of the jar and breakfast on the go is ready.




Yield: 2 Servings
Author: Nayna Kanabar
Peanut Butter Overnight Oats with Banana and Vegan Salted Caramel Sauce

Peanut Butter Overnight Oats with Banana and Vegan Salted Caramel Sauce

Overnight Oats with banana, peanut butter and vegan salted caramel sauce, This is the perfect vegan, gluten free healthy breakfast, that is super tasty and delicious.
Prep time: 10 MinInactive time: 8 HourTotal time: 8 H & 10 M

Ingredients

  • 125g Gluten free Oats
  • 200g Almond Milk
  • 50g Soya Yoghurt
  • 1 Tbsp Maple Syrup
  • 1 Tsp Vanilla
  • 1 Tbsp Chia Seeds
  • 1 Banana
  • 2 Tablespoons Peanut Butter
  • 2 Tbsps Vegan Sated Caramel Sauce
  • 2 Walnuts
  • 1 Tbsp Flaked Almonds
  • Mint Leaves for Garnish

Instructions

  1. In a Jar add the oats, almond milk, soya yoghurt, vanilla essence, maple syrup and chia seeds.
  2. Mix everything together, cover with lid and keep in the refrigerator overnight
  3. In the morning mix the oats mixture and dive into two serving jars.
  4. Add a tablespoon of peanut butter on top pf the oats mixture.
  5. Slice the banana and place a few slices on top of the peanut butter.
  6. Drizzle with the vegan salted caramel sauce and top with flaked almonds and a walnut. Garnish with a mint leaf.

Notes:

You can add any type of plant based milk and yoghurt in this recipe.

Nutrition Facts

Calories

677.64

Fat (grams)

29.45

Sat. Fat (grams)

4.72

Carbs (grams)

83.62

Fiber (grams)

14.32

Net carbs

69.31

Sugar (grams)

25.37

Protein (grams)

25.91

Sodium (milligrams)

170.20

Cholesterol (grams)

5.10

The nutritional information provided is an approximation calculated by an online calculator. Please consult a professional dietitian for nutritional advice.

Did you make this recipe?
Tag @simplyf00d on instagram and hashtag it #cookwithsimplyf00d


There are many overnight oat options, you can make them chocolate flavoured by adding cocoa, coffee by adding coffee powder. Flavoured milks such as strawberry, butterscotch or toffee are great flavours to add too. Have you tried overnight oats? What is your favorite flavour, do share in the comments below.





**Collaborative Post

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