21 July 2016

10 Minute Spicy Vegan Bean Burgers

10 minute spicy vegan bean burger. This tasty burger can be cooked fresh or frozen for another day, They taste and look great and will soon become a family favourite. www.tinnedtomatoes.com

Homemade burgers are so different from supermarket burgers. They're a world apart. I do understand why people reach for burgers from the freezer aisle and I can't deny doing it myself occasionally as they're super handy if you're short of time.

However, homemade burgers have so much more texture and flavour. You can choose the exact flavours and the exact level of spice you want without the huge list of ingredients and additives needed to make a frozen supermarket burger.

For instance looking at the label of the pretty standard frozen meat free burgers I've bought in the past. They aren't that bad, but here are a few of the additives:

Sugar Beet Fibre -  they are presumably padded out with this to give them a boost of fibre

Methyl Cellulose -  a stabiliser, which is a thickener

Maltodextrin -  a food additive produced from starch and often used in fizzy drinks and sweets

Dicalcium Phosphate - a calcium supplement which is an inert ingredient found in breakfast cereals and used to bind tablets and toothpaste

None of these are harmful, but when you think a homemade vegetarian or vegan burger is generally made from vegetables, pulses and spices, it does give you pause for thought. And remember you can make homemade burgers when you have time and freeze them, so they are ready for those last minute meals.

10 minute spicy vegan bean burger. This tasty burger can be cooked fresh or frozen for another day, They taste and look great and will soon become a family favourite. www.tinnedtomatoes.com

My spicy bean burgers can be whipped up in 10-15 minutes ready to cook, or you can freeze them to cook another day. All they contain is a mixture of beans, oats, fresh herbs and spices, that's it. No fat (although I do fry them in a spray of rapeseed oil), no dairy and not an additive in sight.

Healthy homemade burgers that are quick to make and taste and look great. It's a no-brainer really isn't it? Rubbery discs with additives or an extra 10-15 minutes to make your own. I think it's well worth the time and effort.

I'm not saying I won't ever slip and buy those supermarket burgers, but it's a balancing act isn't it. Eating healthy fresh food most of the time with the occasional treat and ready made burger.

10 minute spicy vegan bean burger. This tasty burger can be cooked fresh or frozen for another day, They taste and look great and will soon become a family favourite. www.tinnedtomatoes.com

I do hope you give these a try. I'm sure they'll become a family favourite.

Just make sure you stack them high with salad and toppings for the ultimate burger experience. I spread my bun with Violife cream cheese (vegan), that with slices of ripe avocado, then the burger and lots of relish, I do like relish on a burger.

Tip: My last bit of advice is always toast the inside of the buns, you'll thank me for that tip once you try them.

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10 minute spicy vegan bean burger. This tasty burger can be cooked fresh or frozen for another day, They taste and look great and will soon become a family favourite. www.tinnedtomatoes.com
10 Minute Spicy Vegan Bean Burgers
Quick and delicious bean burgers made in 10 minutes from beans, oats, spices and herbs. These are dairy free and vegan with no added salt, sugar, fat or additives that supermarket burgers contain.
  • 800g tinned kidney beans, rinsed well
  • 400g black beans, rinsed well
  • 3 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp dried coriander
  • 1 tsp chilli powder (more if you really want a kick)
  • 90g/1 cup porridge oats
  • a generous handful of fresh coriander, chopped
  • a good grinding of black pepper
1. Once you've rinsed the beans, reserve a quarter (roughly) to add later and pop the rest in a large bowl.2. Mash the beans into a paste, then add the spices, herbs oats and whole beans and mix until well combined.3. Shape the burger mixture into 6-8 burgers, depending on how big you like them.4. These are now ready to cook. I like to fry them in a spray of rapeseed oil but they should bake fine too. If you don't need them right away either chill them for later or freeze them on a tray, then pop them in a freezer bag once they are frozen.5. Enjoy!
Total time:
Yield: Makes 6-8 burgers

Here are a few more of my homemade burgers for you to try:

18 July 2016

Meat Free Mondays - 7 Recipes for the Week Ahead (18 July 2016)

You may have noticed it's been a couple of weeks since the last Meat Free Monday. We've been on holiday in Cyprus where my husband's parents live. Lot of sun, swimming, reading, being bitten by bugs (you should see the state of my legs) and enjoying so much ripe, run-down-your-chin juicy fruit. Just look at that side of the road fruit and veg market. I wish we had these in Scotland. The selection was fabulous and none of it looked like it was picked to soon and a bit peely wally either.

Monday is here, so it's time to look at some tempting veggie dishes from around the world and plan for the week ahead.


Only Cumbs Remain


Natural Kitchen Adventures


A Virtual Vegan


Lisa's Kitchen




Tinned Tomatoes


Everyday Healthy Recipes


Mushroom and Malbec Pate - Big Cook Tiny Kitchen
Vegetarian Picnic Eggs - Tinned Tomatoes

Thanks to everyone who created a recipe for us this week. 

If you're a blogger and would like to be featured next week. Link your veggie or vegan (main course) recipe to this post and add your post to the linky below (one per blog)

If you're a reader, tune in next Monday for another seven delicious veggie and vegan recipes to help you plan your week.

UPDATE: I am on holiday with my family (will share soon), so extending this edition of Meat Free Mondays until 31 July 2016. Hope you've ll been of having fun too.

17 July 2016

Rich Sticky Toffee Pudding - vegetarian and vegan recipes

I know, I know, it's summer. What am I doing posting a rich pudding like this?

Is there a wrong time to eat this?

I hope you didn't answer yes. If you did I'm very disappointed in you. I think a good pudding deserves to be enjoyed all year round and let's face it the weather in Scotland is so changeable (sometimes several times a day)

This is one of the few times where I'm sharing someone else's recipe (I shared Jamie Oliver's Happiness Pasta last year). I couldn't resist sharing this one as I love sticky toffee pudding.

I'm also adding vegan substitutes for you to try. I haven't tried veganising it myself yet, but this is how I would do it and vegan eggs haven't let me down yet. Sometimes when I use them the cakes don't have the usual rise but it really doesn't matter for a rich pudding like this.

This pudding was created by Tom Kitchin, a Scottish chef you may have heard of. He's been on various cookery shows including the Great British Menu and he was the youngest chef to win a Michelin star. His restaurant is called the The Kitchin and you'll find it by the canal in Leith, Edinburgh, down by the old docks.

Tom created this recipe and gave it an extra warmth and kick by serving it with Glen Grant Whisky. He selected an 18 year old single malt which has a rich and spicy flavour.

Whisky can be great served with or in desserts and puddings. This one has a strong, rich flavour, which is perfect with or in a pudding, but if you're making lighter dessert like Scottish Cranachan (where the whisky is one of the ingredients) you'd be looking for a younger whisky like Glen Grant's 10 year old single malt, which has a light fruity flavour but still has the flavour of malt. This 18 year old would totally overpower cranachan and other lighter desserts.

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Rich Sticky Toffee & Whisky Pudding
Sticky Toffee Pudding - A classic rich British pudding that can be enjoyed all year round with custard or ice cream (dairy free options are good here too). The recipe includes the original and notes on how I would make it vegan.

  • 515g dates (with no stones), chopped
  • 675 ml/3 cups water
  • 2 ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
  • 112g/½ cup butter (or dairy free spread)
  • 515g/2 ½ cups & 1 tbsp demerara sugar 
  • 515g /4 cups & 1 tbsp plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 4 eggs , whisked (or flax eggs, see notes below)
  • 1 kg/5 cups demerara sugar (for the sauce)
  • 1 litre/4 cups & 3 tbsp single (light) cream (or Alpro soya cream)
  • 250g/1 cup butter, diced (or dairy free spread)
1. Preheat the oven to 180 c/160 c fan/350 f/gas mark 4, then grease and flour 8 individual pudding moulds. If you are using flax eggs make them now and pop them in the fridge.2.  Gently cook down the dates and water until they form a paste.3. Add the bicarbonate of soda, then turn off the heat and mix together. Cream the butter and sugar until soft, add the date paste, the eggs and finally the flour and baking powder and gently combine.
4. Place the mixture into the pudding moulds and bake for 25-30 minutes until a skewer or knife comes out clean
5. For the caramel sauce - Bring the cream and sugar to the boil in a pan, towards the end of baking time. Whisk in the butter and simmer until reduced and thick.
6. To serve, remove from the moulds and pour over the caramel sauce. Serve with custard or ice cream (dairy or dairy free) and a nip of Glen Grant Whisky.7. Enjoy!Notes: to make a flax egg mix 1 tbsp freshly ground flax seeds (linseeds) with 3 tbsp water. Pop in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to thicken. Multiple the amounts for more flax eggs. This recipe requires 4 flax eggs so 4 tbsp ground flax seeds & 12 tbsp water.
Total time:
Yield: Serves 8

If you feel this pudding is too rich for warms evenings (how could you!), why not try my Vegan Chocolate Chip and Peanut Butter Mousse made with Chickpea Water(Aquafaba.

Disclosure: I was not paid for this post. I loved the recipe and was delighted to promote a fabulous Scottish Chef and whisky.

13 July 2016

Vegetarian Picnic Eggs

You may be surprised to see an egg recipe as most of my recipes are vegan these days. While we mostly eat a vegan diet, Cooper and I are veggie. So vegans look away.

Cooper does enjoy eggs. He particularly likes a cheese omelette, which he's a dab hand at making (I just flip it for him). He's gone off quiche recently, but he still loves dippy egg and soldiers (soft boiled egg with toast fingers) for breakfast.

He does likes these picnic eggs, although my child loves anything that sounds like it might be a part of buffet or picnic. He loves to be presented with a spread of tasty food so he can help himself to something from each dish.

He recently admitted to us that he only likes movie night on a rainy Sunday afternoon because of the buffet. He says he isn't bothered about the movies. He leave us speechless sometimes.

Vegetarian picnic eggs also known as vegetarian Scotch eggs. This traditional picnic food is brought up to date with a filling of veggie haggis, oats, peanut butter and spices. Perfect for a picnic or buffet.

These vegetarian picnic eggs are a breeze to make. The filling that wraps itself around the egg like a hug is made with veggie haggis, oats, peanut butter and spices.

The filling is mixed together in a bowl then wrapped around hard boiled eggs and rolled in oats before being baking until crisp.

If you don't manage to have a picnic, why not serve these for lunch with a dressed green salad or serve them simply with some chutney?

These picnic eggs will keep happily in the fridge for a few days.

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Vegetarian Picnic Eggs
Vegetarian picnic eggs also known as vegetarian Scotch eggs. This traditional picnic food is brought up to date with a filling of veggie haggis, oats, peanut butter and spices. Perfect for a picnic or buffet.
  • 4 hard boiled eggs, quickly cooled in cold water, then shells removed
  • 150g veggie haggis
  • 25g porridge oats, plus more for coating
  • 3 tsp flax seeds
  • 3 tbsp crunchy peanut butter
  • 3 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp dried coriander
  • a good grinding of black pepper
  • 1 egg, whisked
1. Preheat the oven to 220c/200c fan/425f/gas mark 7.2. In a large bowl mix together the veggie haggis, peanut butter and spices, then season with black pepper.3. Pour in the whisked egg and bring together into a sausage-style mixture.4. Take a hard boiled egg and wrap it firmly in the sausage mix, then roll it in oats. Do this with all the eggs.5. Place on a baking tray and bake for 20-25 minutes until crisp.6. Enjoy!
Total time:
Yield: Serves 4

If you're having trouble finding veggie haggis, check the meat aisles. It often sits beside the traditional haggis. You can also buy it from Macsween or Simon Howie.

Here are a few more veggie haggis ideas:

Red Peppers Stuffed with Veggie Haggis & Mushrooms - Planet Veggie
Veggie Haggis, Mash & Baked Bean Pasties - Tinned Tomatoes
Vegan Haggis Burgers - Allotment 2 Kitchen
Vegetarian Haggis Wellington - Inside the Wendy House
Vegan Haggis & Red Lentil Loaf - Tinned Tomatoes
Vegan Beer Battered Haggis Bites - Tinned Tomatoes
Moroccan Vegetarian Haggis Scotch Eggs - Farmersgirl Cook

10 July 2016

Chickpea and Vegetable Picnic Hand Pies (vegan)

Roast vegetables, chickpeas and hummus encased in golden flaky puff pastry. Perfect for a picnic or lunch. Suitable for vegetarians, vegans or a dairy free diet. www.tinnedtomatoes.com

There's something rather special about a pie. A hand held meal encased in the most flaky, golden puff pastry. I don't have anything against shortcrust pastry, but puff is definitely my favourite.

These are a must for your next picnic, or even just for lunch.

They are a doddle to make and a luxury to eat.

And the surprising thing about these are they are made from a trip down the freezer aisle in Iceland. I first succumbed to their foil trays of Mediterranean vegetables in a basil dressing when I made my Easy Mediterranean Tarts. I just couldn't resist using them again. In fact all the ingredients came from Iceland.

To add an extra layer of flavour I added a thick layer of hummus to the base of these pies, then topped them with roast vegetables, chickpeas and herbs. I finished them with more pastry and decorated them with little leaves and baked them until golden. No egg wash here though folks, I just brushed them with a little soya milk and it worked just as well.

We tucked into these while they were still warm, but they have lots of flavour when they are served cold too.

I'm now thinking of the second block of pastry in the freezer and the bag of frozen red fruits I bought in Iceland too and thinking a fruity hand pie topped with a cloud of icing sugar might be rather wonderful too.

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Roast vegetables, chickpeas and hummus encased in golden flaky puff pastry. Perfect for a picnic or lunch. Suitable for vegetarians, vegans or a dairy free diet. www.tinnedtomatoes.com
Chickpea and Vegetable Picnic Hand Pies
Roast vegetables, chickpeas and hummus encased in golden flaky puff pastry. Perfect for a picnic or lunch.
  • 500g puff pastry
  • 500g Iceland Mediterranean Vegetables in a Basil Seasoning
  • 400g tin of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 150g hummus
  • 1 tbsp frozen coriander (or fresh)
  • a good grinding black pepper
  • enough soya milk to brush the pastry
1. Take your puff pastry out of the freezer the night before and pop in the fridge. When you come in from work, take it out of the wrapper and sit on a plate for half an hour while you do other things. I haven't included this time in the cooking time.2. Preheat the oven to 220c/ 200c fan/425f/gas mark 7. Once heated pop the mediterranean veg into the oven for 25-30 minutes. Remove the lid but keep in the foil tray.3. Once the veg is out of the oven, leave it to cool a little, then mix in the chickpeas and herbs and season with black pepper.4. Roll the pastry out quite thinly, then cut out circles. I used a small bowl as a cutter, but the size is up to you.5. Place half the circles of pastry on a baking tray and spread thickly with hummus. Leave a border around the edge.6. Pile the vegetables and chickpeas onto the hummus.7. Stretch the circles for the lids a little so they will drape beautifully over the filling.8. Press down the edges, then crimp with a fork. Add decorations with the leftover pastry. A little water will stick the pastry shapes on.9. Cut three small slits in the pies to let out steam, then brush them with a little soya milk and bake for 30-35 minutes until crisp and golden.10. Enjoy!
Total time:
Yield: Makes 6 pies (depending on size)

I made this recipe as part of Iceland Foods #PowerOfFrozen campaign.

Here are a few more recipes to make after a trip down Iceland's freezer aisles.

Easy Mediterranean Tart - Tinned Tomatoes
Creamy Mushroom Potato Dauphinoise - Tinned Tomatoes
Spicy Couscous Veggie Burgers - Thinly Spread
Ultimate Lazy Vegetable Lasagne - The Veg Space
One-Pot Vegetarian Chilli Mac - Amuse Your Bouche
Mediterranean Roasted Vegetable Pasties - Jo's Kitchen
Vegetables in Tao Pan Sauce with Garlic Rice - Simply food
BBQ Waffle S'mores - Foodie Quine

Iceland have a website called Power of Frozen with lots of facts and ideas about frozen food. Do check it out and follow the conversation with #poweroffrozen

Disclosure: This recipe was developed for Iceland. I was not expected to write a positive review and any opinions expressed are my own.

05 July 2016

Sticky Red Onion & Sausage Bake with Gravy (vegan)

Sticky Red Onion & Sausage Bake with a Rich Gravy (vegan) www.tinnedtomatoes.com

I've made this bake a few times. Graham and Cooper both love vegan sausages and this is a way of serving them that's more interesting and more of a meal than serving them plain.

I particularly like this dish because it takes hardly any preparation. The most I have to do is peel potatoes to serve with it.

With this dish I can put a substantial and healthy meal on the table on a weeknight and feel like a domestic goddess. I have to admit weeknights don't usually look like this. You'll generally see me making pasta, soup, dal or toasties with salad. Nothing complicated or time consuming. Just an easy meal that doesn't take too long.

To make this bake the red onions and sausages are roasted in the oven. When they are crisp and brown I add a rich gravy and pop it back in the oven while I cook potatoes for mash. I serve the bake with mashed potato and peas for a comfort-on-a-plate dinner. It's really, really tasty and would please the most hesitant veggie.

I use Linda McCartney Sausages which are suitable for vegans and a mixture of a gravy pot and vegetable stock cubes for the gravy. You could use your favourite sausages and make your own gravy if you like, these are my weeknight shortcuts.

I do hope you give this one a try. I'm sure you'll love it, my boys do and so do I.

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Sticky Red Onion & Sausage Bake with Gravy (vegan)
An easy vegan sausage and red onion bake in a rich gravy. A simple bake that's easy to make on a weeknight. Serve with mashed potato and peas for the ultimate comfort dish.
  • a generous spray of rapeseed oil
  • 12 frozen vegan sausages
  • 4 red onions
  • 1 gravy stock pot
  • 2 vegetable stock cubes
  • 500ml/2 cups boiling water
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • a good grinding of black pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 220c/200c fan/425f/Gas 7.2. Peel and quarter the onions, then place them in a roasting tray with the sausages. Give them a generous spray of rapeseed oil, then toss them to coat.3. Bake for 25-30 minutes until starting to brown.4. Pour 500ml of boiling water into a jug or bowl and add the gravy pot, stock cubes and thyme and stir until dissolved.5. Pour the gravy over the sausages and onions, then season with black pepper and pop back in the oven for another 20-25 minutes until the gravy has thickened.6. Serve with mash and peas.7. Enjoy!
Total time:
Yield: Serves 3-4

If you like this dish, you may like some of my other bakes

Veggie Sausage, Lentil and Red Pepper Bake