Spicy Vegetable Chilli

I’ve devised this gorgeous autumnal spicy chilli recipe for my loyal vegetarian / vegan followers. Not my family as if I offer them chilli without meat they think it is a cruel trick. Personally I love it.

I’ve not added pumpkins to the chilli, they are for aesthetic purposes only to make it look a bit Halloweeny, as let’s be honest I think I speak for everyone in saying that would be rank! We lugged these things for miles so I’m using them in some way!

This is healthy and low in fat. I make it with tinned cherry tomatoes for added sweetness. It’s divine with lots of fresh coriander and mango chutney.

Happy Halloween!

Ingredients

350g butternut squash and sweet potato mix

1 tin cherry tomatoes

1 tin red kidney beans in chilli sauce

1 tin black beans – drained

Olive oil

3 cloves garlic – minced

150ml water

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

4 teaspoons paprika

4 teaspoons ground cumin

3 tablespoons tomato puree

Salt and cracked black pepper

1 tablespoon Worcester sauce

Method

Add a glug of olive oil to the pan and cook down your onions until they are translucent.

Add your garlic, all the spices and then the cherry tomatoes.

Pour in the kidney beans in chilli and black beans and then add the butternut squash and sweet potato.

Stir in the tomato puree, Worcester sauce, water and season.

Simmer gently for approximately an hour or until the butternut squash and sweet potato cubes are tender to bite into.

Serve with lots of mango chutney, fresh coriander and rice if you fancy.


Sushi

Have you ever made sushi before? It’s so much easier than you think. My tip is to make your sushi rolls when the rice is slightly warm as this makes it easier to shape than with cold rice. Here I’ve given a recipe for the sushi rice. Simply add whatever you fancy to it, I’ve added cucumber and peppers for a light vegetarian / vegan option.

Ingredients

Pack of sushi nori ( seaweed wraps)

250g sushi rice

330ml water to boil rice in.

3 tablespoons Japanese rice vinegar

2 tablespoons sugar

1 teaspoon salt

A few slices of cucumber and pepper to fill.

Method

Rinse your rice under the tap in a sieve until the water runs clear. Soak it in water for 20 minutes or so, then drain thoroughly.

Add the rice to your 330ml of water over a low heat and bring to the boil. Simmer gently for approx 10 minutes leaving the lid on.

Allow the rice to stand.

Mix up your seasoning and stir into the rice.

Lay out each wrap and coat lightly with the sushi rice adding your fillings down the centre.

Gently roll into a cigar shape as tightly as you can lightly wetting the edge of the wrap so it sticks together.

Slice into rounds with a sharp knife.

Serve with soy sauce and wasabi.


Mini Cucumber and Borlotti Bean Salad

A simple salad to balance out all the excesses of Easter. Does anyone find mini cucumbers more of a novelty? I must get out more ha ha!

Love adding different beans to salads to change them up and pack in a bit of protein.

Serves 4

Ingredients

8 mini cucumbers

Bag of lambs lettuce and beetroot shards

2 cups of borlotti beans

Handful of vine cherry tomatoes

Dressing

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

1 garlic clove minced

Salt and cracked black pepper to season

Squeeze of lemon juice

Method

Simply chop and arrange your salad on your chosen plate. Mix up your dressing and dress the salad. Serve immediately with your accompaniment of choice.

Tip: Grilled halloumi works well with this dish with a tzatziki dip.


Filo Vegetable Samosas

I’ve added a recipe for all my friends doing Veganuary. These little samosas make the best lunch. They’re made using filo pastry so delightfully delicate and light. Just add a crisp salad with them full of red onion, tomato and a side of mango chutney for dipping. Fabulous when you have lots of left over veg you need to use up. Even better for lunch boxes the next day.

Makes 12

Ingredients

2 carrots

1 large potato

1 cup frozen peas

1 large clove garlic – minced

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

1 teaspoon turmeric

1 teaspoon garam masala

3 sheets filo pastry

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 table spoon poppy seeds

Method

Pre heat oven to 220c / 200c fan and take your filo out the fridge at least 15 mins before you intend to use it.

Start by boiling your potato and carrot in a pan of salted water until tender.

Meanwhile, sauté your diced onions in a frying pan until they start to soften along with the minced garlic.

Add your spices and the frozen peas.

Stir around the pan until the peas are cooked. This should only take 2-3 minutes.

Once your onions are cooked and your veg is tender, drain and chop it into pieces, then add it to your onion and spice mix stirring to combine.

Place your 3 sheets of filo flat on the work surface. You need to work quickly as it can dry out quick.

Cut each sheet into 4 rectangles. You may have a marginal amount left from each sheet in order to do this but you can just discard this.

Fold each rectangle into a triangle shape. Open and fill with approx 1 tablespoon of the filling. Fold over back into the triangle shape and brush with oil all over and to seal the edges. Feel free to trim any edges to get the perfect triangle shape.

Place each samosa on a lined baking tray and sprinkle over the poppy seeds. Bake in the centre of the oven for approx 20-25 minutes.

Serve with a side salad and compulsory mango chutney.


Fruit Smoothie

Getting the day off to a great start, this fruity smoothie is bursting with vitamins. Strawberry, pineapple, melon and orange.

Great for breakfast on the go when you’re short on time or a post work out energy boost.

Serves 2

Ingredients

5 strawberries

2 slices of pineapple (round)

1/4 small honeydew melon

Juice of an orange

A few cubes of ice

Method

Simply chop all your fruit except your orange and blitz with a few cubes of ice in your blender. Squeeze in your orange, stir and enjoy.


Mushroom Cauliflower Rice Stir Fry Bowl

I’ve been asked by my vegan friends to share a vegan recipe. It was perfect timing when Fullgreen sent me this cauliflower rice to try. It comes in a variety of flavours and the portobello mushroom flavour pairs so well with a veggie stir fry.

Packed full of mange tout, mini corn, edamame beans and chilli this stir fry bowl is full of asian flavour. The addition of the mushroom cauliflower rice compliments it perfectly and you can whip it up in minutes. What’s more it’s low carb and gluten free, made of 100% veggies and no preservatives.

Serves 1 as a meal or 2 as a snack

Ingredients

Tablespoon olive oil

1/2 a carrot – cut into matchsticks

Handful of mange tout – cut into halves

1/2 cup broad beans, edamame beans and peas (mixed)

3 mini sweetcorn – cut into half

1 tenderstem broccoli floret – chopped small

1 spring onion – chopped

1/2 a red chilli plus extra to serve if desired

2cm piece of fresh ginger – grated

2 large cloves garlic – minced

1 tablespoon ketjap manis

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper

Juice of 1/2 a lime

Pack of Fullgreen portobello mushroom cauliflower rice

Method

Once you’ve chopped your veg heat a pan with your olive oil.

Firstly add your carrot matchsticks to the pan as they take a little longer. Pan fry them for a couple of minutes and then add in the rest of your veg along with your garlic and ginger.

Stir for 5 minutes or so until the veg is softened but still has a crisp bite to it.

Add your ketjap manis, the juice of half a lime and season with salt and cracked black pepper.

While your veg is cooking put on a separate small pan for your cauliflower rice. Heat on a medium heat for 2 minutes stirring all the time. Simply add to your stir fry bowl and enjoy! I like it served with extra chilli and a lime wedge to squeeze over.


Spicy Vegan Butternut Squash Chilli

Thank you so much to the lovely people at Dhow Nature Foods for sending me some gorgeous spices to try. Dhow Nature Foods is an East Africa inspired health food brand and is available online for great natural, pure and organic products. Excellent quality spices, a little goes a long way, so economical too.

I’ve devised this fabulous butternut squash vegan chilli that brings on the flavour with the wonderful African birds eye chilli and turmeric powders. Full of delicious sweet potato, kidney beans for protein and a whole lot of other healthy goodness in a slimming tomato based sauce. If you like your chilli spicy, you are going to love this recipe.

Serves 2

Ingredients

1/2 a teaspoon of Dhow Nature Foods African Birds Eye Chilli Powder

1 teaspoon Dhow Nature Foods Turmeric Powder

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tin of chopped tomatoes

1 teaspoon light brown sugar

1/4 red onion – diced

2 cloves garlic – minced

4 tablespoons mango juice

2 small sweet potatoes – diced in 2cm cubes

1/2 can kidney beans

4 tablespoons water

1 tablespoon mango chutney

Pinch of salt

Grind of cracked black pepper

Method

Pan fry and brown your diced onion in 2 tablespoons olive oil over a low heat adding your garlic, African Birds Eye Chilli powder and Turmeric powder. Stirring all the time.

Now add your kidney beans, diced sweet potato, tinned tomatoes, light brown sugar, mango chutney, water and mango juice. Stir to combine. I always have a taste at this stage, then season with salt and cracked black pepper.

Cover and simmer for approximately 35 minutes so the sweet potato is nice and soft, making sure you stir every now and then.

Tip: I like to serve with coriander and extra mango chutney. I find the sweetness of the mango against the heat of the chilli powder works really well.