22 August 2016

Meat Free Mondays - 7 Recipes for the Week Ahead (22 August 2016)

Hi everyone, how are you? We've had a great week. Cooper is back at school and is really enjoying it. If you read my last post you will see we had a fun first-day-of-school when I picked him up and we've had a lazy week with three meals out. I was super good and picked soup the first two times, then salad for my last. It's such fun to catch up with friends.

I'm writing this up with a glass of red wine in my hand.. It's Sunday night and I'm about to head into the kitchen to make our lunches for tomorrow. It's that time. Time to plan for the week ahead and that's exactly what Meat Free Monday is, a guide to help you plan the week ahead.




Everday Healthy Recipes


The Taste Space


Easy Peasy Foodie


Tinned Tomatoes




Only Crumbs Remain


Gluten Free Alchemist

Earth Burgers - Green Gourmet Giraffe
Gozleme (flatbread filled with different types of veggies and cheese) - Cook Style
Richly Braised Lentils - Tinned Tomatoes
Aubergine & Chickpea Curry - Easy Peasy Foodie

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 up 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.

20 August 2016

Malteser Fudge Brownies

This was Cooper's first day of school chocolate cake. I know, it isn't chocolate cake, but we ran out of time.

It's full on chocolate, so that's all that matters.

Cooper is back at school and we have our own wee tradition of spending time together in the kitchen (after his first day of school) baking a cake. We usually bake chocolate cake, but this year we had to scale back our plans.

After he finished school, we walked into town to our local bookshop. First we headed upstairs to the cafe so Cooper could enjoy a slice of cake and a hot chocolate, then down to the bookshop so he could choose some books.

We must have spent a couple of hours in the book shop, sitting on the floor surrounded by books, then my husband met us and we took a walk with our dogs along the River Tay. By the time we got home there was little time for baking. I couldn't let Cooper down, so brownies it was and while they baked I popped on some pasta for dinner.

This recipe is super easy and quick. I have to be honest and tell you I didn't make my own buttercream for the top this time. I had an emergency tub of Betty Crocker Chocolate Buttercream, so that saved us even more time. 

When the bake was cool, I topped it with half a tub of buttercream then added Maltesers and chocolate sprinkles as a finishing touch. I covered the tray and popped it in the fridge overnight. The next day when we tried a piece, it was gloriously fudgey and the perfect chocolate hit.

I made these with dairy, but it's an easy recipe to turn dairy-free. I've added my dairy-free alternatives to the recipe if you're vegan. Either way do try this.

print recipe

Malteser Fudge Brownies
Quick chocolate brownies that turn gloriously fudgey when left in the fridge overnight. For extra indulgence they are topped with chocolate buttercream, Maltesers and sprinkles, but this is optional. Vegan version too.
  • 200g dark chocolate, broken into pieces
  • 200g butter (or dairy free spread)
  • 3 large eggs (or flax eggs)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 200g light brown sugar
  • 80g plain flour, sieved
  • a pinch of salt
1. Preheat the oven to 180c/160c fan/350f/gas mark 4.2. Melt the chocolate and butter in a bain marie (a bowl over gently simmering water, making sure the bowl doesn't touch the water or the chocolate could seize)3. Whisk the eggs (or flax eggs) with the sugar & vanilla extract until light and frothy, then pour in the chocolate mixture and mix in.4. Fold in the flour and pour the brownie batter in a lined square brownie pan. Bake for 20-25 minutes.5. Leave to cool then pop in the fridge overnight. For extra luxury top with chocolate buttercream and sprinkles.6. Enjoy!FLAX EGGS: Whisk 1 tbsp freshly ground flax seeds (linseeds) with 3 tbsp water to make one flax egg. Triple the quantity for this recipe. Leave in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to thicken.
Total time:
Yield: Makes 16 Brownies

If you like these brownies, try my Oreo Chocolate Tiffin (vegan) or Mars Bar Slice.

Go on, be good to yourself!

17 August 2016

3 Bean Chocolate Chilli (vegan)

Yes I did say chocolate. Don't you add chocolate to your chilli? I'm sure some of you do. It gives the chilli a wonderful depth of flavour with less of a tomato taste.

I would love to claim this is a traditional Mexican dish, but it's not. Mexicans do add chocolate to dishes, but chilli con carne (or chilli non carne) came from the American Southwest not Mexico, so it is more of a Tex-Mex dish with a Mexican flourish.

I add bitter dark chocolate cocoa, but you can add cacao powder or even a few squares of dark chocolate.

15 August 2016

Meat Free Mondays - 7 Recipes for the Week Ahead (15 August 2016)

Happy Monday! How's your week been? We've had quite a quiet week. It was Cooper's last week before started back at school. We went out for dinner a couple of times, read books, watched movies and played board games and last night we ended the week with a two and a half hour walk with the dogs. It was good to get some fresh air.

Tonight I'm packing his lunch for tomorrow, his bag and getting his uniform ready, but before I do I wanted to share this week's selection of delicious veggie recipes. I do hope you try some of them.

Have a great week!

10 August 2016

Tomato Gnocchi Bake with Cheesy Oat Crumble (vegan)

Vegan Tomato Gnocchi Bake with Cheesy Oat Crumble. An easy veggie family bake made with a fresh tomato sauce, gnocchi and a cheesy crumble topping. Serve with baby potatoes and vegetables. www.tinnedtomatoes.com

I hold my hands up. I've not successfully made homemade gnocchi yet. I admit I only tried a couple of times years ago and when It didn't taste as good as I thought it should I immediately gave up. 

This isn't a story about how I've spent the last few weeks perfecting the skill of gnocchi making. I'm sorry if that was what you were hoping for. I may try again sometime. I do think fresh gnocchi is far superior when served straight up with a sauce, but shop bought gnocchi is perfect if you want to fry it until it turns into crisp little potato parcels to serve with a meal or when you want to throw together a quick but substantial bake.

I've made gnocchi bakes before. One of my favourites is a tomato and aubergine (eggplant) gnocchi bake which is topped with oozing mozzarella (equally good with melty vegan mozzarella). It's utterly delicious. I also make a simple tomato and basil gnocchi bake which I can also highly recommend.

08 August 2016

Meat Free Mondays - 7 Recipes for the Week Ahead (8 August 2016)

Happy Monday everyone. I hope you are ready for a line-up of seven awesome veggie dishes for the week ahead plus a few bonus recipes.

Yes, it's Meat Free Monday. You may be veggie already, trying to cut down on meat or just trying to improve your diet. Well you've come to the right place for some tasty ideas. Enjoy!