High in fiber, low in fat and calories, and yet loaded with protein, chickpeas are by far one of the best sources of protein for vegetarians. But their wonderfully nutty flavours means that even the non-vegetarians will love them.
Served with some seasonal salad, tucked into a pocket bread, sandwiched between sliced bread or simply on their own, these patties make a delicious vegetarian meal. They are easily veganized by substituting the egg for egg replacement, and utilizing tofu instead of feta.
- In a food processor add in chickpeas, onion fritters, crushed garlic, grated carrot, feta and egg, and process until combined.
- Transfer to a bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Add the breadcrumbs and mix until combined. Season well with salt and pepper. Press into 6 patties. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Heat the oil over a medium heat. Add the patties and cook for 4-5 minutes each side until nicely golden brown.
These flourless peanut butter cookies are a dream if you're going gluten-free and sugar-free, especially with the perfect pairing of chocolates. I have used Martha's recipe and replaced caster sugar with pure stevia extract powder and they turned out fantastic.
- Preheat oven to 160C/320F, fan-forced. Line two baking sheets with parchment papers. Set aside.
- Cream peanut butter, pure stevia, egg, baking soda and salt i na large mixing bowl until well combined. Stir in chopped chocolates and peanuts. With damp hands, roll level tablespoon of dough into a ball. Place on the prepared baking sheets. Flatten slightly.
- Bake for 12-14 minutes until golden and puffed, swapping baking sheets halfway through cooking.
Shirataki (shee-rah-TAH-kee) noodles are made from Konjac flour, which comes from the roots of the yam-like Konjac plant grown in Japan and China. They are mostly composed of a dietary fiber called glucomannan and contain very few calories and carbohydrates. ( or even carb-free). Some shirataki noodles are made out of tofu, which have a small amount of carbs.
Shirataki are typically sold in wet form -- the noodles are bagged in liquid. All it requires is rinse and drain them before using for the recipe. They do not have much flavour by themselves, but absorb flavors well from other ingredients you can combine them with. You can easily find shirataki noodles at Asian stores or online.
- Drain and rinse shirataki noodles very well. Set aside. Season the shrimp with salt and pepper. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil into a skillet over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add in seasoned shrimp and cook until they turn pink. Remove and place them in a bowl.
- Add the remaining olive oil into the skillet, then garlic and ginger. Cook for a few seconds, then add in all the shredded vegetables. Cook for a minute. Add shirataki spaghetti, stir-fry 2 minutes. Stir in sweet chilli sauce and shrimp, heat through. Taste and season with salt and pepper if needed. Serve immediately.
These granola bars were adapted from No-Bake Granola Bars from David Lebovitz. They are soft, chewy, but won't stick to your teeth, sweetened with molasses and rich in nutrients and fiber. These make-ahead granola bars travel well and are perfect for the office or on-the-go breakfast.
- Line a 12x28-cm rectangular or 24-cm square-shaped pan with plastic wrap. Place sesame seeds in a small oil-water-free pan over medium heat. Shake the pan so that they are evenly spread in a thin layer. Toast, stirring from time to time with a wooden spoon, for 2-3 minutes until lightly golden brown. Transfer them into into a bowl. Add oats, chopped almonds, peanuts, chocolates and dried fruits. Set aside.
- Heat peanut butter and molasses in a saucepan, stirring until warm, but not boiling. Pour the mixture into the oat mixture. Stir until completely incorporated.
- Transfer the mixture into the prepared pan and press it down until uniformly flattened. Cover and freeze for 30 minutes. Remove and cut into slices.
This is a delightful quick bread that is fast and easy to prepare, healthy and delicious. The molasses, which is a good source of calcium, iron, potassium and magnesium, adds a hint of sweetness and nicely compliments the nutty flavour of the emmer flour. It tastes great plain or with a little butter.
Emmer, also known as farro, is a low gluten, nutrient dense grain with a sweet, nutty flavour. If you cannot find emmer in your local stores, simply replace it with kamut or modern whole wheat flour.
- Preheat the oven to 160C/325F. Line a standard-size loaf pan with parchment paper.
- Whisk together the ground emmer, oat flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large mixing bowl. Make a well in the center and add in buttermilk, egg and molasses. Whisk to combine.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and sprinkle with rolled oats. Bake in the middle of hot oven for about an hour until toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool in pan for 15 minutes, then turn out onto a cooling rack. Cool completely.
This is an easy but very tasty cauliflower recipe. The fun presentation of a whole cauliflower, first blanched in vegetable stock, then dressed with a creamy tangy turmeric sauce, which can be made ahead of time, and topped with some chopped greens.
- Clean and wash the cauliflower, discarding the leaves, and remove about 1 inch of the hard core, making sure the florets don't fall off. Bring a large pot of vegetable broth to a boil. Add in the whole cauliflower and cook, covered, until cauliflower is tender, but not mushy, about 12 minutes.
- Melt butter over low heat in a medium-sized saucepan. Sprinkle in the flour and turmeric powder. Cook for a couple of minutes. Add in the warm vegetable stock and milk. Bring to a simmer and cook until slightly thickened. Season with lemon juice, pinch of sugar, salt and pepper to taste.
- Put the whole cauliflower on a warm serving platter. Spoon the sauce over the top and sprinkle with the chopped greens. Serve immediately.
Tuiles (French for 'tile') are wafer thin cookies that can be shaped over the handle of a rolling pin when warm from the oven. They are simple to make, and provide a crispy texture. I like these light and crunchy tuiles just as they are, but they go perfectly alongside the cheese dip, or as a garnish for the ice cream.
Kamut Pepita Tuilesadapted from No Frills Recipes
- Whisk together the ground kamut and pure stevia powder. Make a well in the centre, add in the melted coconut oil, lightly beaten egg whites and vanilla. Add in pepitas and mix until well combined. Allow the mixture to rest for 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Spread the mixture about a teaspoonful at a time on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Spread them thinly and bake for 13-15 minutes or until crispy.
- Let cool in the baking sheet for 10 minutes before transferring onto a wire rack to cool completely. Store crisps in an air-tight cookie jar.
The Chinese New Year for 2014 is on Friday, January 31st and marks the start of the Year of the Horse. So I would like to wish all of my supportive readers who are celebrating Chinese Spring Festival, have an enriching and pleasant Chinese New Year and may this new year of the HORSE lead you to the path of peace, happiness and good fortune!
If you were born in the Year of the Horse (1918, 1930, 1942, 1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002, and 2014), 2014 is your "běn mìng nián-本命年". According to Chinese tradition, one should wear a red pullover, or red gloves, or red socks, anything red. Because "běn mìng nián-本命年" is also called a threshold year which it is believed is hard to get through. Chinese people believe that RED is a lucky colour, which can help people get through challenges and rid themselves of any misfortunes coming from their "běn mìng nián-本命年".
Pistachio Spelt Sablés with Rose Pepper Berries
These sablés, adapted slightly from Küchen Götter, are a traditional French shortbread with a crumbly texture with white spelt, chopped pistachios and rose pepper berries. Coconut oil can be replaced with butter.
- In a large mixing bowl, add in flour, stevia extract powder, salt and lemon zest. Whisk to combine. Add in coconut oil, rub the ingredients just to combine, then mix in egg white. Fold in chopped pistachios, then press the mixture against the side of the bowl to bring it together.
- Now transfer the dough to a board and knead lightly, then roll into an 9”-long log about 1½” in diameter, pushing dough together if it feels crumbly. Wrap tightly and chill in the freezer for 30 minutes or until firm.
- Preheat the oven to 160C/320F, fan forced. Remove the cookie log from the freezer and roll with rose pepper berries, then gently press with your fingers to help the berries adhere.
- Cut the log into ¼”-thick rounds and transfer to 2 parchment-lined baking sheets, spacing ½” apart. Bake for 12 minutes, rotating baking sheets halfway through, until set around edges and centers look dry, 12 minutes. Transfer to wire racks and let cool.