Vegan Choc Chunk Cookies

This recipe is really easy, it just takes a bit of prep the night before, but nothing major.  All you have to do, is drain a can of chickpeas and reserve the leftover liquid in the fridge, you call this “Aquafaba”  and it is absolute magic! This will be the binding agent for our cookies, and it also helps the outside crisp up nicely.

I love the heartiness that the oats adds, and oats in the morning for breakfast is so engrained in my memory, it almost tricks me into thinking I can have a few alongside my morning tea, and actually why not? These aren’t overly sweet, and the light hint of cinnamon just ties it all together.

It’s a pretty sticky situation once you start forming the cookies into balls, so embrace your inner child here. Shape them between your hands like patties and then give them a gentle smash to flatten them out, don’t skip the refrigeration step because it helps a lot with the shaping! The cookies need a bit of time to cool down and then firm up after you have removed them from the oven, although I usually cant wait that long and start snacking while they are still warm and gooey! As they cool down they will become crispy on the outside and stay nice and chewy on the inside. Once they are cool, store them in an airtight container.

Vegan Choc Chunk Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup almond flour
  • 1 cup rolled oats (use gluten free if desired)
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ cup finely chopped chocolate
  • ¼ cup aquafaba
  • ¼ tsp cream tartar
  • 3 tbsp almond butter (use peanut butter if you don’t have)
  • 3 tbsp melted coconut oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 190c. Line a pan with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine almond flour, oats, baking powder, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon and chocolate chunks.
  3. Beat the aquafaba and cream of tartar together until soft peaks have formed.  Add in almond butter, oil and vanilla, and beat until just combined.
  4. Mix together wet and dry ingredients, and cover the bowl with clingfilm. Refrigerate mixture for at least 1 hour, but the longer the better.
  5. Scoop out the mixture and form into balls, then flatten between your hands. Place on prepared baking tray.
  6. Transfer the pan to the oven and bake on middle rack for 14 minutes ( checking towards the end so cookies don’t burn, sometimes mine are already golden by the 11 minute mark)
  7. Allow cookies to cool down so they can firm up, and enjoy!

Vegan double chocolate mousse cakes

Before I started following  a plant based diet, I had a recipe for these chocolate mousse cakes that would be my showstopper dessert at every dinner party. I would be requested to make these for all the family events we would go to, and everyone that ever tasted it would ask me for the recipe. So needless to say, I simply had to “veganize” this dessert!

Nutty chocolate base, two layers of mousse, topped off with ganache AND chocolate crumble!

It consists of a raw chocolate base, and then you can choose to keep the white mousse layer as coconut and vanilla, or if you have a sweet tooth like me, amp it up with some white chocolate. The dark chocolate mousse layer as well as the ganache, helps keep this dessert balanced as they offer more bitter notes. I usually have some crumb left over from the base, so I like to make a crumble and scatter it over for a nice crunch, but you can totally use coconut flakes or garnish with whatever your heart desires!

 I like to use little ring moulds to make individual cakes, but if you don’t have at home,  I have also used a spring form cake tin which works perfectly fine. In theory you could also line a bread tin with clingfilm hanging over the sides, and just lift the cake out then slice, however I have not tried this method.

I always have a few tins of coconut cream standing upside down in my fridge for when I need it. For the mousse layer, you’ll be scooping out the thicker creamy part and using that for this recipe. Reserve the rest of the liquid for smoothies by freezing it in an ice cube tray.

Vegan Double Chocolate Mousse Cakes (makes 8)

Base:

  • 200 g pecans
  • ¼ cup almond flour
  • 7 medjool dates (if you cant find fresh, soak in boiling water for 25 mins)
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 3 tbsp coco powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil (cold state)

Mousse:

  • 120 ml aquafaba (chilled liquid from tin of chickpeas)
  • 5 tbsp sugar
  • ½ tsp cream of tartar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tins coconut cream (only use the thick solid creamy part)
  • 100 g dark chocolate (I use Afrikoa 70%)
  • 100 g white chocolate (optional)

Ganache:

  • ½ cup coconut milk
  • 130 g chocolate
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil

Base:

  1. Add pecans to a food processor and blend well. Add all the remaining ingredients and blend until everything is well combined. It should clump together when pressed, if its too dry add another date.
  2. Transfer mixture to lined springform tin or ring moulds, pressing firmly to form a solid base. Reserve leftover crumbs for topping.

Mousse:

  1. Whip the aquafaba on high speed until foamy, add cream of tartar and gradually add in sugar. Continue to whip until stiff peaks have formed. Transfer to a new mixing bowl and set aside.
  2. Whip coconut cream with vanilla until soft peak stage,  fold this mixture in with the aquafaba from the previous step.
  3. Divide the mixture into 2’s.

White Mousse Layer:

For plain coconut flavour, use mousse as is. For white chocolate option: In a heatproof bowl, Microwave white chocolate in 20 sec increments until melted, and fold into half of the mousse mix. Spread onto base and freeze for at least 30 mins.

Dark Chocolate Layer:

Repeat above process with dark chocolate and spread over white mousse layer, freeze at least 30 mins.

Ganache:

  1. Add all ingredients to a bowl and melt over a bain-marie until smooth. Allow to cool down slightly and pour over mousse. Return to freezer at least 1 hour.

Crumble:

If you have base mixture left over, Preheat oven to 170C and spread out so you have a crumble. Bake for 30 mins and allow to cool down before you garnish. Alternatively decorate with chocolate shavings or toasted coconut flakes.

To serve:

1. Remove from the freezer. With warm hands or heated cloth, heat up moulds slightly and loosen springform tin/press out from bottom of ring moulds using your hands (like a push-pop)

2. Move cake to refrigerator to thaw and and to carry on setting for at least 4 hours before serving, use a warm hot knife to cut slices.

Vegan blueberry crumble muffins

This muffin batter consists of an easy one bowl recipe, and it’s impossible to mess it up. These muffins are airy, light and filled with delicious blueberries. They provide the perfect balance between being tart and sweet, while the crumble on top gives them a nice crispy crunch as well as adding a bit of extra sweetness to finish.

Now, here’s a little trick to help the blueberries stay evenly distributed throughout the muffin: You put them in a small bowl with some flour,  give it a few shakes to make sure they are all coated and then place them in a sieve to get rid of any excess flour. This helps the blueberries cling to the batter, and makes sure they don’t all go sinking down to the bottom of your muffins, your welcome 😉

Vegan Blueberry Muffins (makes 8)

Batter:

  • 1 ½ cups flour + extra 2 tbsp for dusting blueberries
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • ½ tsp vanilla essence
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1 full mounting cup fresh blueberries

Crumble:

  • 2 tbsp rolled oats
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 2 tbsp demerara /brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil (in its solid state)

Batter:

  1. Preheat oven to 200C and line a muffin tin/ spray with cooking spray.
  2. Sift the flour, sugar, salt and baking powder together in a bowl.
  3. Add the almond milk, vanilla essence and oil, and whisk until just combined (don’t over work the batter)
  4. Toss the blueberries and extra flour together in a bowl until they are completely coated, pour into sieve to get rid of any extra flour.
  5. Gently Fold the blueberries into the batter with a spatula.
  6. Pour batter into lined/prepared muffin tin and start on the crumble.

Crumble:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl, mix together using your finger tips until you have what resembles breadcrumbs.
  2. Sprinkle the crumble over the muffins and place into oven to bake for 30-35 mins, check with skewer for doneness.
  3. Remove from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature before removing from the tin.

*Notes: These muffins freeze well, so I often make a double batch and keep the extra one stored in the freezer in and airtight container.

Vegan mushroom burger

When Clemi and I were on honeymoon in Cambodia, we came upon a little restaurant serving mushroom sliders, and they were so heavenly! Since that day I have been trying to replicate the recipe, and I think this is as close as I will ever get!

Garnish and add any toppings you enjoy. I love adding a good tomato relish, fresh rocket, avo, vegan cheese, and vegan chipotle mayo.
Drool, am I right?

This is one of my favourite week night meals to make! You basically throw everything in a pan, then you get out your trusty food processor, form patties and refrigerate until you are ready to bake them in the oven, and it’s as easy as that!

This mushroom patty is seriously a juicy flavour bomb, the mushrooms have such a delicious earthy flavour, and they soak up all the tasty juices and spices while simmering away in the pan. It’s important to use brown mushrooms here, as the white mushrooms don’t have nearly as much flavour.  I love making a vegan chipotle mayo with my burgers, the recipe I’m sharing with you is tangy, ultra creamy, slightly sweet and a little bit spicy!

Form into 4 large, or 5 medium patties. If you find it too hard to shape them, add a few more tablespoons breadcrumbs.

I have made this burger a few times without the flaxseed mix, but I prefer the texture with it, it also holds together a lot better. I’ve stated it as optional, because it will still hold together and taste good if you don’t use it, but for best results, definitely include the flaxseed mix.

Vegan Mushroom Burger (makes 4-5)

Mushroom patty

  • 1 medium red onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 500 g mushrooms (any brown mushrooms)
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce/tamari
  • 2 tbsp tomato sauce
  • 1 tbsp parsley
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • a few drops liquid smoke (optional)
  • ¼ cup fresh dill or basil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tbsp ground flax seed, and 5 tbsp water (optional)
  • ½ cup walnuts
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 2/3 cup breadcrumbs
  1. Preheat the oven to 200C
  2. Add flaxseed and water to a cup and stir, set aside (we will use this as a binder later)
  3. Finely dice the onion and garlic, add to a pan with a good glug of olive oil and fry on medium-low heat until onions are soft.
  4. Roughly chop mushrooms (we will blitz them in a food processor later)  and add them to the pan, stir 5 mins.
  5. Add the soy, tomato sauce, spices and a few drops liquid smoke (if using) Stir so everything is combined.
  6. Crank up the heat to medium-high, now we want the mushrooms to start releasing all their juices (it will look very watery)
  7.  Give it a stir every 5 mins or so until the mushrooms have soaked up almost all the juice and sauce (I have added a photo above so you have reference) This process will take about 25 mins, then set aside to cool down and taste for seasoning.
  8. Add walnuts, oats and breadcrumbs to a food processor and pulse, we still want it to maintain texture, then transfer to a large bowl.
  9. Add flax mix to the food processor with half the mushrooms, pulse until just combined (we don’t want it becoming a paste) and add to the bowl of dry ingredients. Repeat with remaining mushrooms.
  10. Finely chop Dill/Basil and add to the mixture. Mix everything together well, I like using my hands.
  11. Form balls with the mixture, then flatten and shape between your hands (If you’r finding it sticks to your hands too much, add 1 tbsp breadcrumbs until it’s easer to shape) Place on a baking tray brushed with olive oil/spray.
  12.  Cover the patties with foil and leave in fridge for at least 30 mins or leave for later.
  13. Remove the foil and transfer the baking tray to the oven, bake for 25 minutes, flip carefully halfway through.
  14. Remove from the oven and allow 5 minutes cooling time for the patties to firm up before any handling.
  15. And you are done!

Vegan chipotle mayo (makes enough for 5 burgers generously)

  • ½ cup avocado oil/ canola oil
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ cup soy milk
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup (honey if not vegan)
  • 3 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tsp chipotle seasoning
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • Sea salt to taste
  1. Add all ingredients to a blender cup, place your immersion blender inside and give it a few pulses. Once the mixture has started emulsifying, move the blender up and down to incorporate any oil that is still at the top.
  2.  Garnish burger with mayo, or  keep stored in the fridge in an airtight container.

Vegan seedy peanut butter squares

These squares were inspired by one of my favourite snacks, loads of good old peanut butter on a piece of toasted seed loaf bread! I had so much fun creating these, and after a few failed attempts I finally nailed it. I hope you will enjoy them as much as I do, I’m sure once you’ve tried them, they will become one of your go to snacks too!

Crunchy seeds, creamy dreamy peanut butter AND silky chocolate, whats not to love?

I chose a mixture of seeds that I enjoy, however the recipe will work just as well with whatever you have in your pantry as a substitute.  These are pretty rich, so when you are making your slices, just bear that in mind, a little goes a long way here. Enjoy and let me know what you think!

Vegan Seedy Peanut Butter Squares

Seed layer:

  • ½ cup oats
  • ½ cup heaped pitted dates (if dried, soak for 25 mins in boiling water then drain)
  • ¼ cup sunflower seeds
  • ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1 tbs chia seeds
  • 2 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 1/8 cup peanut/almond butter
  • 1/8 cup maple (use honey if your not vegan)

Peanut butter layer:

  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 6 tbsp maple syrup (honey)
  • ½ cup coconut flour

Chocolate layer:

  • 120 g chocolate ( I use Afrikoa 55%)
  • ½ cup coconut milk
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil

Seed layer:

  1. Heat up a pan over medium heat and toast the oats until golden, then set aside in a medium mixing bowl. Next add all the seeds to the pan and toast until fragrant (keep an eye on them, they can burn easily) Add to the bowl and allow to cool.
  2. In a blender, process the dates until it’s all chopped up, transfer to the bowl with oats and seeds.
  3. Pour maple syrup and peanut butter into a heatproof mug, and microwave in 20 sec increments, stirring until smooth.
  4. Add the peanut butter mix to the oats, seeds and dates, and mix until it’s all incorporated and deliciously sticky.
  5. Pour the mixture into a prepared baking tray ( with parchment paper going all the way up and over the sides, I used a large bread loaf tin) and smooth with a wet spatula. Make sure to get it nice and tightly packed, you want the base to hold together well.
  6. Chill in freezer for at least 30 mins to harden while preparing next layer.

Peanut butter layer:

  1. Add the peanut butter, coconut flour and maple syrup to a bowl. Fold with spatula until you have a very thick mixture that clumps together (it should almost resemble a sturdy cookie dough)
  2. Once the mixture is combined, spread onto the seed layer with a spatula, and once again press down well.
  3. Place back in the freezer while you make your last layer. Almost there!

Chocolate layer:

  1. Chop up the chocolate and put in a heatproof bowl with the coconut milk and coconut oil. Microwave in 20 sec increments, stirring until melted and combined (don’t microwave it for longer stretches, because the mixture could split)
  2. Pour over the peanut butter layer and garnish with chopped peanuts and a sprinkling of flaky sea salt if desired. Leave in refrigerator to set for at least 4 hours.
  3. Lift out the parchment paper, and slice into squares or slices using a dry hot knife. Enjoy!

*Notes: Once set, you can keep these in the fridge, or store in an airtight container in a cool dry place.