Easy Vegan Vanilla Pancakes

This recipe is so quick and easy and tastes amazing.

The vanilla protein in these pancakes are optional, but they give the pancakes SO much more flavour and the protein powder is 100% vegan and has great ingredients. Obviously you don’t need to add protein powder to your mix, but adding protein powder to your recipes is beneficial (if it is a good quality protein with no added sugar), as it gives you a good quality hit of protein which is nutritious, it keeps you fuller for longer and helps to bulk up your meal. I get my protein from Happy Way, they have great ingredients and are locally made in Australia.

Ingredients (serves 1)

  • 1 banana, mashed
  • 2 eggs
  • Dash of almond milk
  • Chia seeds
  • 1/2 scoop of vanilla protein powder (optional)
  • 2 drops of vanilla essence (optional)

Toppings (optional)

  • Fresh/frozen blueberries and raspberries or other fruit, diced (optional)
  • Coconut yogurt
  • Cacao nibs
  • Maple syrup (optional)

Method

  1. Add banana, eggs, almond milk, chia seeds, protein powder (optional) and vanilla essence (optional) into a bowl and mix until batter-like consistency. Let it sit for 5 minutes until the chia seeds have slightly swelled.
  2. Fry in a non-stick pan and serve with or without toppings.
  3. Enjoy!

Homemade Vietnamese Phó Soup

A very popular dish in Vietnam is their Vietnamese Phó soup. It is served for breakfast, lunch and dinner in most hotels and restaurants and is possibly one of the most common dishes you will come across.

They serve it with either chicken, beef, vegetable and sometimes even seafood- my favourite was the beef phó.

Despite tasting amazing, this soup is just so good for you! It was probably my favourite dish in Vietnam- although you must check if the broth is made fresh because some places just serve a packet version which does not taste as nice and definitely doesn’t have the health benefits. The phó broth uses beef/chicken bones boiled over many hours which allows the collagen and minerals from the bone to release into the liquid broth, so when you consume the broth all these good minerals enter your body- call it the ultimate hangover or illness cure. These certain minerals are not found in other foods and are not absorbed as readily in capsule form so if your over indulging in the phó soup this may not be such a bad thing!

Street phó is often the better way to go.

Seasonings vary, most commonly you can add bean sprouts, shredded greens, mint, coriander, chilli, lime juice and other herbs and I find it to taste a lot more flavoursome if you garnish it with a bit of fish sauce and soy sauce.

My recipe takes reasonably long if you want to reap the health benefits from the bones, but it can also be as quick as you want it to take. It does taste a lot better if left to simmer for longer, but I had it after 2 hours and it was still nice.

Ingredients (serves 2)

  • Beef soup bones (approximately 3-4)
  • 2 green onions
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1 thumb of ginger, sliced
  • 3 star anise
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 tsp pepper corns
  • Fresh mint
  • Fresh coriander
  • Bean sprouts
  • Shredded Asian greens / Bok choy
  • Chilli, diced
  • Fish sauce / soy sauce
  • Lime, juiced
  • Thick rice noodles, cooked

Method

  1. Boil the beef bones for 10 minutes until impurities have surfaced. Rinse the pot and the bones and set aside.
    Lightly char the onion, garlic and ginger in a non-stick pan, remove from the pan and set aside.
    Add the star anise, cinnamon and peppercorns to the pan and char until pepper corns begin to pop or slightly darker in colour.
    Throw all ingredients into a large pot including the beef bones and cover with water by approximately 5cm. The water will evaporate over time so make sure there is plenty in there.
    Simmer for at least 2 hours (longer the better) up to 10 hours for maximum flavour and health benefits simmer longer.
    Drain the ingredients and collect the liquid- this is the broth.
    Compose a bowl with noodles, bean sprouts, greens, chilli, herbs. Pour the broth over top and then add sauces and lime juice to taste.

Many people boil a brisket in the pot for 2 hours which significantly enhances the flavour and then remove and slice it up to serve in the bowl- but I was too lazy and it tastes okay without. Enjoy!

Simple Raw Vegan Vanilla Cheesecake

There is limited preparation needed for this dessert as long as you have access to boiling water to speed up the soaking process. Before you begin cooking you will need access to a food processor or blender and a ~20 x 20 cm baking pan or dish that can sit in the freezer. The size does not really matter, this will just change the height and size of the cheesecake at the end of the day.

Once you have all your tools, I recommend soaking the dates, brazil nuts, pecans and almonds in boiling water separately for 30 minutes and soaking the cashews in boiling water also for around an hour- the longer you soak the cashews the more creamy the cheesecake will become. I could have soaked mine for a tiny bit longer, but it was still a good consistency.

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Before you go ahead and make your own cheesecake, keep in mind the flavours you love particularly in the base. I love brazil nuts for the crunch, pecans for the twist of honey flavour and almonds for their taste (I love almonds) which I think compliments the vanilla well, but you can really choose any nuts that you desire. Also, when processing the base ingredients feel free to keep a little bit of crunch in the base by not fully processing it into a smooth base texture, I think this makes it more exciting to eat, but completley up to you.

Ingredients

Base
1 1/2 cup of dates pitted, soaked
3/4 cup of almonds, 3/4 cup pecans, 1/3 cup brazil nuts, soaked
1 heaped tbl cacao powder
2 tbl coconut oil
2 tbl coconut sugar

Filling
1 1/2 cup cashew nuts, soaked
1/4 cup maple syrup/agave/rice malt syrup
400ml coconut cream
1/4 cup coconut oil
2 tsp vanilla bean

sprinkle of coconut flakes on the top is optional

Method

  1. Soak the cashew nuts in hot water for 2 hours- the water does not need to be changed throughout.
  2. Soak all the other nuts for 30 minutes as well as ALL the dates in separate jars.
  3.  Combine all the base ingredients in a food processor until a sticky dough.
  4. Line the baking tray with baking paper and lay the dough flat pressing down with a spoon into the edges and set in the freezer for at least 20 minutes.
  5. To prepare the filling, just add all ingredients to the blender or food processor and blend until smooth and is the consistency you are after.
  6. Pour the filling on top of the base and return to the freezer to set for approximately 1.5-2 hours.
  7. Cut with a hot knife and serve chilled.

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4 Simple Homemade Dressings

Do not fall into the trap of purchasing commercial salad dressings and vinaigrettes, unless you read the ingredients on the back because most are full of sugars/sweetners/extra fats and can turn a healthy meal into an unhealthy meal. The following salad dressings are all vegan and healthy versions of my old favourite dressings that are packed full of sugar. As always, change the qantities of ingredients to suit your taste-this is just the ratios I use. These are all made to serve one, but can be doubled/tripled depending on the size of your salad or how many people you are serving!

1. Lemon-Pepper Herb

  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 tbl apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tbl olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp cracked pepper
  • 2 tbl of diced fresh parsley
  • 2 tbl of diced fresh coriander
  • 2 tbl of diced fresh chives

Healthy Creamy ‘Pasta’ Dressing

  • 2 tbl tahini
  • 1 tbl olive oil
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1/2 tbl apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbl almond milk
  • pinch of salt & pepper

Citrus Vinaigrette

  • 1 whole lemon, juiced
  • 1 tsp grated lemon peel
  • 1/2 orange, juiced
  • 1 tbl olive oil
  • 1 tsp seeded mustard
  • 1 tsp tahini
  • pinch of salt & pepper

Tangy Honey Mustard 
(This can be made vegan by substituting the honey for rice malt syrup)

  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 tbl lemon juice
  • 1 tsp seeded mustard
  • 1 tsp mustard
  • 1 tbl tahini
  • 1 tbl olive oil
  • pinch of salt & pepper
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar

whisk all ingredients for around 30seconds and massage into meals before eating- it tastes a lot better!

Raw Golden Gaytime Bliss Balls

Raw, vegan, gluten free, dairy free and refined sugar free. Try not to over cook the buckwheats, otherwise it will spoil the taste.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups dates, soaked
  • 1 cup buckwheat groats, lightly toasted
  • 1 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1 tsp peanut or almond butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean
  • 2 tbl coconut cream (or coconut yogurt)
  • 1 tsp cacao
  • 1 tbl rice malt syrup

Method

  1. Soak dates for atleast 30 minutes in hot water or over a few hours in cold water
  2. Using a non stick frying pan, lightly toast the buckwheat until slightly golden-do not over cook on high heat!
  3. Combine all other ingredients in a food processor and blend. Add dates and blend
  4. Roll mixture into balls and coat with toasted buckwheats