Old mother hubbard…


How are you? I’ve been working a lot this past week and all the busyness seems to have made me far less interested in food than normal, very weird! I’ve been eating lots of plain but delicious meals like the quinoa bowls I posted about here. And much more boring things like cereal and toast, things I never normally eat. I think my body is craving plain and grounding foods. Anyway here is something I threw together one evening when I was feeling a little more hungry but had nothing to eat!!

Well I say I had nothing to eat (have you seen my vegan cupboard?!) but I did dig out some veg from the farmers market, some ready cooked polenta and some sundried tomato sauce from the cupboard. Oh and a seitan steak from the freezer. Maybe not so much of a poor underfed vegan then!

Firstly I gave the seitan the crispy tofu treatment and left it baking in the oven while I made everything else. The polenta just needs slicing and frying in a small amount of oil (or lots if you’re not bothered about that sort of thing!) which I left til last, but I thought I’d mention it first because it’s easiest!

With the chard I roughly chopped the stems into 5cm long pieces and then cut the leaves into strips. Then I heated up some olive oil, added a couple of sliced garlic cloves and allowed it to sizzle until it smelt strongly of garlic. At which point I threw in the chard stems and allowed them to cook for 2 minutes or so before adding the leaves and allowing them to wilt.

Isn’t the amazing colour of chard so beautiful?? Gary sometimes helps out at a garden/allotment where adults with learning difficulties help with the gardening and brings home huge bunches of chard all with different coloured stems, talk about eating the rainbow!

I sliced the courgette and then cut the coins into quarters before frying them up, adding the sauce when they were cooked and a little extra seasoning (I know those sauces are full of salt and sugar but they never taste seasoned enough to me). Then I poured it over the cooked polenta, added the chard, grabbed the seitan out the oven and voila a pretty quick but delicious meal out of not very much. perfect!

Hopefully I’ll be posting much more soon (now the weekend is here!)

Elise x

Level 7 Vegan

Surely this meal deserves me that??? What not even after Amaranth for breakfast???

Quinoa topped with panfried kale, green beans and homemade vegan ‘pesto’.

Tonight I really wanted something quite plain and easy to cook. I get that sometimes. While I love cooking in all it’s formats I do like simplicity, and I think I’m entitled when I cook at least 2 meals a day for myself (porridge counts as cooking right? well I think the way I do it has to!) plus whatever I have to cook at work. So this was tonights offering.

I’ll post the recipe for the vegan ‘pesto’ tomorrow, it’s worth the wait I promise!

Elise x

Crispy Baked Tofu

Hello, how are you today?

I’ve done so much baking this week it’s verging on ridiculous! Banana loaf, rocky road, apple muffins, maple & pecan cake and blondies…though that was all for work and seeing as they weren’t vegan they don’t count! Gary is home from his holiday tomorrow so I’ve been baking him welcome home cookies from veganomicon, I’ll probably post about them tomorrow. But for now…

Crispy tofu is so easy and so delicious! You can see why chowvegan talks about eating a whole pound of it in one day, I think I could! You should definitely check out this blog, it’s full of brilliant ideas like vegan ‘fried egg’ and has loads of asian inspired dishes, yum!

The recipe for the crispy baked tofu is here. But as I’ve mentioned before, I can’t leave well enough alone so I…

  • Replaced the oil with one ‘egg’ worth of Orgran No-Egg to help the breadcrumbs stick a little better
  • Added 1tsp nori flakes to add a little more flavour

Other than that I made no major changes and this came out really well. Definitely worth a go.


Mixed Mushrooms & Truffle Polenta

Hello, how are you today?

I’m good, but I’ve got to entertain myself all this week because Gary’s not here…booo! Oh well, I’m going to spend more money then I can afford on ingredients, spend hours cooking and not have anyone to moan at me for doing it! Actually it’s far more likely I’ll live of a diet of hummus and bread. Oh and these….

These are amazing! What the packaging doesn’t point out is that they’re prepared in wine vinegar too, so they’re actually really tangy too. I think I’d prefer them without the vinegar as it was a bit of a shock when I first ate one but they’re so good I don’t really mind. In fact they’re so good I had to invent a dish for them and here’s what I came up with…

I’ve been having polenta cravings, so much so that I’ve had it three times already this week!! I do have little food obsessions where I want to eat the same thing for a week, then I get bored and move on. I figure as long as I have a variety of things with the obsession it won’t make my diet too unbalanced!

Mixed Mushrooms & Truffle Polenta
1/2 cup polenta /cornmeal (70g)
2 1/2 cups water (600ml)
1 tsp vegetable boullion
1tsp dried thyme
1tsp olive oil
1tsp truffle oil
2tsp nutritional yeast
handful rocket
4tbsp marinated mushrooms

In a medium sauce pan bring the 2.5 cups water to the boil. Add the vegetable boullion (use a stock cube if you haven’t got it), thyme and olive oil. Using a whisk, whip up the water so it’s all moving. Very slowly pour in the polenta (cornmeal) DO NOT stop mixing or you’ll end up with very lumpy polenta! Lower the temperature and leave to bubble gently for 15 minutes.

***You could gently warm the jarred mushrooms while waiting for the polenta, but I personally like a mix of temperatures in my food***

When the polenta is cooked (it’ll no longer taste gritty) remove from the heat and stir in the truffle oil and nutritional yeast. Both should be added at the end of cooking as the truffle oil will lose it’s flavour and the nutritional yeast will lose it’s nutrients.

Pour the polenta into a bowl, top with a spicy salad (I chose rocket) and the marinated mushrooms.


I think what made the dish for me was the comfort of polenta mixed with the luxuriousness of truffle oil and posh mushrooms! The mouthfeel of all the different types mixed together is awesome.

What posh dishes do you like making for yourself?

Elise x