This recipe has been a surprising favourite for many years, having been adapted from a recipe in BBC Vegetarian Good Food magazine circa 1999! It’s a rustic Italian inspired dish. More vegetables have been included, oil eliminated and wholewheat sourdough toast substituted. Interestingly it features cumin which I thought was very unusual for in Italian cuisine, however after researching I find it used to be more popular and was even called Roman Caraway! 🙂
Even my kids love this dish; it’s both simple in terms of ingredients and yet complex in flavour. You WILL go back for a second bowl!
Italian Cabbage & Beans
Recipe type: Casserole / Soup
- 1 large leek, sliced
- 1 large red onion, sliced
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 1 garlic clove, cut in half
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds (or try fennel or caraway for interesting variations)
- 2 large potatoes, peeled and diced
- 1 litre vegetable stock
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 small savoy cabbage, roughy shredded / and / or kale, shredded
- 1 can cannellini beans, drained & rinsed
- wholewheat sourdough bread, toasted
- flatleaf parsley, finely chopped
- In a large deep casserole pot, saute the leek, onion, cumin seeds & crushed garlic for 3 minutes until softened, stirring occasionally and adding a small splash of the stock to stop it sticking
- Add all of the stock, and bring to the boil.
- Add the bay leaves, cabbage beans potatoes and return to the boil.
- Turn down to a simmer and put on the lid.
- Simmer for 15 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.
- Turn off the heat and allow to sit for 10 minutes whilst you toast the bread and rub them with the cut garlic cloves.
- Serve the cabbage and beans scattered with the parsley alongside the garlic toast
Tender vegetables simmered in a creamy sauce. Perfect for an Autumnal dinner served with mash & more veggies.
Chunky Vegetable Mornay
- 1 large leek, sliced
- 1 large green capsicum / bell pepper, diced
- 1 large carrot, diced small
- 1 large stick celery, diced small
- ½ cup white wine
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- 1 cup soy / other plant milk
- 1 cup boiling water
- 2 tablespoons creamy style hummus
- 1 tsp chicken style stock powder
- 1 head broccoli, cut into small florets
- 2 tsp cornflour mixed til smooth with a splash of soy milk
- Salute the 1st 4 ingredients (leek to celery) in a large frying pan (skillet or casserole dish with a close fitting lid) until tender, adding a splash of water if necessary to stop sticking.
- Add the remaining ingredients apart from broccoli & cornflour mix and stir well, replace the lid and simmer for 10 minutes. Add the broccoli and replace lid, allow to steam until broccoli is almost done. Add the cornflour mix, and stir slowly until thickened and flour is cooked out. Turn off the heat, replace lid and allow to sit whilst you prepare the plates & accompaniments.
- Best served with mashed potatoes, or a cooked grain. May also go well with wholewheat pasta.
This was inspired by Fatfreevegan’s recipe for Dal Tadka, I wanted to include more veggies and tweaked the method and spices a little.
Cauliflower & Kale Dhal (pressure cooker)
- 2 brown onions, chopped
- 1 inch piece ginger, grated
- 2 large cloves garlic, minced, grated for finely chopped
- 1 cup split red lentils
- 3 cups water,
- 1 teaspoon vegetable stock powder (optional)
- 1 large tomato, chopped
- 3 cups small cauliflower florets
- ½ bunch kale, de-stemmed & finely chopped
- 1 heaped tsp cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- ½ teaspoon salt (optional)
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- ½ tsp chilli powder / to taste (optional)
- 1 teaspoon garam masala / dhal spice mix / curry powder
- Put rice on to cook if you are serving with rice.
- Heat the pressure cooker on brown function, add one of the onions, all the ginger and garlic and stir around for a minute, add a splash of water or stock if starts to stick.
- Add the lentils, water, stock powder if using, tomato, cauliflower, kale, cumin seeds, turmeric & salt and stir thoroughly.
- Lock down the lid and set to high pressure for 10 minutes.
- Whilst the dhal is cooking, heat a large frying pan and dry fry the onion with remaining spices for 5-10 minutes, over a medium heat. Use a lid to catch the steam and prevent them from sticking.
- Once the dhal is finished, release the steam and add the cooked onions and spices; stir well and serve.
- Great with mango chutney, freshly chopped coriander and a sprinkle of coconut if you wish.
This is really a meal in a bowl and yet another easy way of getting fantastic nutrition into children – you can puree this soup if you want to hide the awesome but yet suspicious ingredients! Along with a hunk of wholegrain bread this is dinner on the table in 30 minutes.
Sweet Potato, Capsicum & Chickpea Soup with Spinach
Recipe type: Soup
- 1 medium / large brown onion
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 large red capsicum (bell pepper), diced
- 2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- ¼ teaspoon ground chllies
- 2 cups cooked chickpeas
- 500g sweet potato - diced
- 1.2 litres vegetable stock
- 1 small glass white wine
- 2 large handfuls of baby spinach leaves
- Heat large soup pot over a medium heat and sauté the onion, garlic, and capsicum until softened a little, be careful not to burn the garlic
- Add the spices, chickpeas, sweet potato, wine and stock and bring to the boil.
- Once the potatoes are tender, stir in the baby spinach and stir until wilted.
- Use a potato masher or stick blender if liked to make a little smoother, or serve chunky.
These are real crowd pleasers, perfect as part of a party banquet, but equally at home as part of dinner with maybe some rice and salad. These are flavoured a la Mexican, with cumin, coriander, red and green capsicum, onion and red kidney beans, but they can be themed any how – swap out the spices for fresh shredded basil, drop the beans but add sliced black olives and they become pizza quiches. Try sweetcorn and Thai curry paste and make Thai inspired quiches, or try potato, pea and maybe cauliflower, with curry powder and they’re Indian! The sky’s the limit! 🙂
Mexican Chickpea Quiches
Recipe type: Snacks
- 2.5 cups of chickpea flour (also known as besan flour / garbanzo flour)
- 3 cups of water
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- chilli powder - to taste (optional)
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast (optional)
- 1 medium red capsicum (bell pepper), diced small
- 1 medium green capsicum (bell pepper) diced small
- 1 medium red onion, diced small
- 1 cup red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 cup sweetcorn, frozen or canned
- Equipment: 12 hole muffin tray (I used silicon for easy removal) - stand on a large baking tray before filling if you are using a silicon one.
- Heat the oven to 200 degrees C
- In a large bowl, combine the chickpea flour, herbs and spices, water and salt and whisk well. Set aside.
- Heat a large frying pan over a medium heat and fry off the capsicum and onion until tender. Tip the vegetables into another bowl and mix in the beans, corn, & olives
- Pour the batter into each muffin tray, filling ⅔ full.
- Using a small spoon, add a heaped teaspoon of the vegetable mixture to each muffin hole.
- Stir each muffin hole to distribute the vegetables.
- Place into the oven, bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden and firm to the touch. Allow to cool until able to handle them. Place upside down on the baking tray (use baking paper to line) and pop back into the oven for another 10-15 minutes until bottoms are also golden.
- You should have enough batter left to make a few more.
- Lovely served hot, warm or cold.
These are fantastic little crispy bites, with whole grains, lentils, kale, onion, red pepper, and flavoured with Italian herbs. The grain and lentils all cook together into a fabulously textured kind of porridge which is an amazing base to make burgers, and sausages with. Perfect for parties, lunchboxes or just snacks to keep in the fridge when hunger strikes!
The other ingredients are then just stirred in and I used a mini muffin tray for easily shaped and uniform results.
Impossible to eat just one! We love them topped with hummus and a red pepper relish.
Kale & Red Pepper Bites
- ½ cup medium grain brown rice
- ¼ cup millet
- ¼ cup split red lentils
- ¼ cup quinoa
- 1 box of frozen kale
- 1 red capsicum, finely diced
- 1 large onion, finely diced
- 1 tsp Italian dried herb mix
- ½ tsp garlic granules
- ½ tsp onion powder
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 1 tablespoon low sodium tamari / soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon of tahini - optional
- juice of half a lemon
- zest of a whole lemon
- ¼ cup ground almonds - optional (makes them more crispy but you can leave out for school lunchboxes).
- Equipment: mini 24-cup muffin pan
- Sesame seeds - optional
- Rinse the grains and lentils in a fine sieve under running water for a couple of minutes.
- Place them in a rice cooker (or saucepan - but you may need to add an extra half a cup of water before the grains are fully cooked, depending on how tight fitting the lid is) with 3 cups of water, and put it on to cook.
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees centigrade. / 375 Fahrenheit.
- Meanwhile, put the kale into a sieve over (in which the sieve will be enclosed) and cover in boiling water.
- Place a large frying pan over a medium heat, and "fry" the capsicum and onion, adding a splash of water or stock to stop them sticking. Do not allow to get too moist. Once softened after a few minutes, add the herbs and garlic. Cook until the moisture has evaporated out and the vegetables are fairly dry but not sticking to the pan.
- Drain the kale, and squeeze all the water out of it with your hands - I find it easiest to do this in 3 or 4 small handfuls, and set aside.
- Once the grains are cooked, (they should be fairly dry also) tip them into a large bowl, and tip in the contents of the frying pan. Sprinkle in the kale, breaking up any lumps, then add the nutritional yeast, tamari, tahini, lemon, zest & almonds and thoroughly mix (clean hands are best for this!).
- Sprinkle some sesame seeds if using into the bottom of each muffin hole, then pack the mixture firmly on top, pushing down to ensure no air pockets which will stop them coming out cleanly. Sprinkle some more sesame seeds on top.
- Pop into the top of the oven for 20 minutes. Take out, allow to sit for 5 minutes then invert the tray onto a cooling rack, making sure they all come out (you might need to loosen stubborn ones around the side with a plastic knife), place that on top of a baking tray and then pop back in the oven for 10 minutes to crisp up the bottoms.
- My mixture made 34, so you can use the tray again to use up the mixture for another 6-10 bites.