Creamy dairy-free pumpkin sauce

When I first saw vanillacrunnch vegan mac n' cheese sauce I was fascinated what you can create with just veggies. Pumpkins are a great way to make a creamy sauce without using any cream at all. Then I thought why not add a little bit of fat to make the sauce a bit thicker and even more nutritious. So I added a few cashew nuts and it turned out quite well.

Another thought was using the oven to give the veggies a roasted taste. I also added carrots, because who doesn't love carrots?! And ta da, the perfect creamy sauce was born (at least in my opinion ;))

You can mix the sauce with any pasta you like, use zoodles (zucchini noodles) or even add it on top of some rice. I guess it would also be quite a nice spread or how about dipping some raw vegetables in it. There is no limit!

I topped it with some nutritional yeast and kidney beans for extra protein

print recipe
Creamy, dairy-free pumpkin sauce
This is a great way to add more vegetables to your diet. The pumpkin makes the sauce super creamy without having to add any sort of cream. Top it with kidney beans to get an extra protein boost
Ingredients
  • 400g Pumpkin
  • 300g Carrots
  • 40g Cashew Nuts
  • 1 Onion
  • 1 tsp Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 tsp Sea salt
  • 1 tsp Paprika Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Nutmeg
  • 3-4 medium Zucchini, spiralized
  • 200g Kidney Beans (cooked)
  • 1-2 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast (optional)
Instructions
1. Pre-heat oven at 180 degrees Celsius2. Wash and cut pumpkin and carrots into equal sized cubes. Slice onion.3. Combine all seasoning (salt, cayenne pepper, paprika powder) and mix with vegetables (carrots, pumpkin and onion). Put on a baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes until soft4. Once vegetables are soft enough, take them out and let cool for a bit. Put everything in a blender and add 150-200ml plain water (if you like a thicker sauce, add water little by little until you reach the right consistency)5. Add cashew nuts and blend well. Add more seasoning if necessary.6. In a sauce pan, add spiralized zucchini and pumpkin sauce. Stir well and let cook for a few minutes. Add cooked kidney beans and serve with nutritional yeast.
Details
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4 servings

The perfect Christmas dish

INSTRUCTION:

  1. Pre-heat oven at 180 Celsius and prepare a baking try with a baking sheet
  2. Scoop out seeds from pumpkin halves and wash thoroughly. With a brush lightly oil each half. Season with some sea salt, pepper, dried rosemary and paprika powder. Place on baking sheet and bake for 40 Minutes until soft
  3. Wash and drain green lentils and pour into a sauce pan. Add a dash of red wine and three times the amount of water. Let simmer until all water is absorbed and lentils are soft. Season with some salt and pepper.
  4. Wash broccolini and cut into 3cm long pieces. In a frying pan, heat some olive oil and add chopped onion. Sauté until translucent. Add broccolini and cover frying pan. Add sea salt and smoked paprika. Let cook for about 10 minutes until broccolini starts to soften. Make sure to check frequently so that broccolini does not get burnt.
  5. Mix lentils with broccolini and scoop into the pumpkin halves. Top with some pomegranate seeds.

I came across the idea to use half a pumpkin as a bowl for my lentils when scrolling through Instagram (I can't remember which account it was) and thought this was a genius idea. Not only does it add color to your plate, it is also a wonderful way to surprise your guests.

I've already written in earlier recipes what an amazing food lentils are. To give you an overview I've created a little infographic.

Since a couple of weeks I'm using opentaste.sg to order fresh vegetables and fruits and when scanning their products I saw broccolini - I do like broccoli, but I looooove broccolini so I had to order them. It turns out that they perfectly fit with lentils and pumpkin and even add an additional color to the dish. Broccolini is basically a hybrid of broccoli and gai lan which makes their floretts smaller and their stalks longer. You can eat the whole thing, so no need to through away the stalks.


INGREDIENTS (2 - 3 Servings)

  • 120g Green lentils, raw
  • 2 Pumpkin halves
  • 2 Bunches broccolini
  • Pomegranate seeds
  • 1/2 Onion, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • Sea salt & Pepper
  • 1 Tsp paprika powder
  • 1 Tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 Tsp dried rosemary
  • Dash of red wine (optional)
 

It's also the prefect Christmas dish with its green and red colors. The pomegranate seeds add a crunchy texture and the sweetness goes very well with the light bitterness of the broccolinis. Hope you enjoy this little festive treat.

Nurture your happiness
Dominique

Oven Baked Falafel

Falafel - an amazing dish known from the middle eastern cuisine. Usually they are deep fried so I wanted to make a version with less saturated fat. Using your oven to bake veggies/legumes is a great way to reduce the amount of fat used and still get a crunchy texture. I served the falafel with homemade tomato sauce and a mix of zoodles and whole grain spaghetti.

The original recipe is from the talented Ania behind Lazy Cat Kitchen

INGREDIENTS FALAFEL (ca 12-15 balls)

  • 1 can drained and rinsed chickpeas or 100g raw chickpeas, soaked overnight and cooked
  • 1/2 Onion, diced
  • 200g Mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 Carrot, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 Tbsp dried basil
  • 1 Tbsp paprika powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste

INSTRUCTION

  1. Heat the coconut oil in a frying pan and sauté onion until translucent. Add mushrooms and carrot and let simmer until soft.
  2. In a food processor, mash cooked chickpeas and put in a mixing bowl
  3. Add tomato paste, herbs, salt and pepper, onion-mushroom-carrot mix and combine to a dough
  4. Form little balls and cool for about 30 minutes
  5. Pre-heat oven at 180 Celsius. Place falafel onto a baking sheet and bake for 30-45 minutes until golden brown and crispy

I hope you enjoy the recipe. Tag me in your creations on social media and let me know how you like them.

Nurture your happiness,
Dominique

Hummus in all kinds of colors

chickpea.png

You voted on Instagram and so I bring you a few hummus variations. Hummus is an amazing dish which can be served as appetizer, spread or as a topping for your Buddah bowls. It is packed with plant protein and fiber which make your digestive system super happy. On the left you can see some of the benefits of chickpeas in more details

Due to their high fiber content, they help reducing your cholesterol levels and thus protecting your heart.

They make sure that your blood sugar levels are stable and is preventive of diabetes 2.

The insoluble fiber in chickpeas travels all the way to the last part of your digestive system (colon) and takes care of a healthy intestinal flora.

Nutrient wise chickpeas provide Manganese which supports your bone health. 1 cup covers already 85% of your daily need.

Folate is another important mineral found in chickpeas. It makes sure that your nervous system as well as your brain are kept healthy.

And last but not least you also benefit from the iron and zinc which support your immune system and help your body in energy production.

So you see, chickpeas are an amazing food which should be part of your diet. And hummus is one of the most delicious ways to eat them

 

 

 

BASIC RECIPE

IMG_6934.JPG

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 can drained and rinsed chickpeas
  • 2 Tbsp tahini
  • Water
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 1 Garlic glove

BASIC INSTRUCTION

  1. Add all ingredients to a food processor.
  2. Be careful with the amount of water. Add little by little to get the consistency you want
  3. Blend well and serve

 

 

 

 
FullSizeRender 3.jpg

BASIL HUMMUS

Just add a bunch of fresh basil leaves to your basic recipe

IMG_7365.JPG

BEETROOT HUMMUS

Add half a beetroot to your basic recipe. You might need to add a little bit more water.

 
IMG_3981.jpg

AVOCADO HUMMUS

Instead of the tahini I used 1 Avocado to make an avocado hummus.

Of course the easiest way to twist the traditional hummus is to add some new spices and play around with them. Instead of just salt and pepper why not add some yellow curry powder or paprika powder? Or maybe add some chili flakes to make it spicy.

Here are some further ideas how to give your hummus a little twist and color

Roasted pepper hummus

Roast one red bell pepper (capsicum) in the oven. Remove the skin and add to your hummus


Sun dried tomato hummus

Add one cup sun dried tomatoes to your hummus. If they are soaked in oil, dry the oil with a kitchen towel before adding them to the food processor

Spinach hummus

Add one or two cups of spinach to your hummus

Have fun playing around with the hummus recipes and let me know if you have an other great variation, because I love hummus :)

Nurture your happiness,
Dominique

Lasagna for everyone

Nowadays it's difficult to cook something which suits all the dietary needs. Your friends might be vegan, paleo, gluten free or can't have any nuts in their food. Well this amazing lasagna caters for everyone. It's gluten free, it's fully plant based, nut free and with a little twist it even suits your friends who decided to live like our ancestors, the cavemen.

It's the perfect side dish so that all your guest can dig in without any compromise on their diets!

The lasagna basically consist of three layers:

  • Tomato-Spinach-Lentil Sauce (if you have paleo friends, just exclude the lentils)
  • Creamy cheese sauce (without dairy, nuts or seeds)
  • Sweet Potato slices

    Tomato-Spinach-Lentil Sauce

    While you are preparing the lentil and cheese sauce, you can already pre-bake the sweet potatoes needed for the lasagna later. Peel three medium sweet potatoes and put them into the oven at 180C for about 15 Minutes. Then cut them into thin slices.

    This sauce is loaded with plant based protein, fiber and is beneficial for your gut bacteria. You can also use it with your zoodles, whole grain pasta or just put it on a piece of bread

    INGREDIENTS

    • 180g Green/Brown lentils, raw
    • 400g Frozen spinach (you can also use fresh one)
    • 500g Fresh tomatoes, diced
    • 1 Tsp Coconut oil
    • 1 Onion, cut
    • Salt and Pepper

    INSTRUCTION

    1. Heat oil in a sauce pan and glace onions
    2. Add lentils with 1.5 times water and let cook until the water is almost absorbed.
    3. Add tomatoes, salt and pepper and let simmer with lid for at least 15 minutes. Stir through occasionally
    4. Add frozen spinach and let simmer without lid until all the liquid is absorbed and evaporated.

    Cheese sauce without cheese

    Super creamy without the need of cashewnuts

    INGREDIENTS

    • 450g Potatoes, peeled
    • 250g Carrots, peeled
    • 120ml Water
    • 2 Tbsp nutritional yeast
    • 1 Tsp Apple cider vinegar
    • 1 Lime, juice
    • 1 Tsp salt
    • 1/2 Tsp paprika powder
    • 1 garlic clove

    INSTRUCTION

    1. Steam potatoes and carrots in a sauce pan with a little bit of water until they are soft
    2. Blend all ingredients with a food processor.

    Lasagna

    You can use the lasagna as a side dish or Enjoy it with some vegetables on the side

    You can use the lasagna as a side dish or Enjoy it with some vegetables on the side

    INGREDIENTS

    • 3 Medium sweet potatoes, pre-baked and sliced
    • Tomato-Spinach-Lentil sauce
    • Cheese sauce
    • Salt and Pepper

    INSTRUCTION

    1. Cover a rectangular oven proof form (I used size 30*20cm) with half of your lentil sauce
    2. Use half your potato slices to cover the lentil sauce
    3. Top with half the cheese sauce and add some salt and pepper
    4. Continue with lentil sauce, top with remaining potatoes and finish with cheese sauce
    5. Bake in the oven at 180C for 45 minutes. Check whether potatoes are soft

    If you want the lasagna to be less heavy, you can also replace the sweet potatoes with zucchini slices. I haven't tried this yet, so not sure about the baking time. But my guess is, that the baking time would be reduced to about 20 minutes.

    Let me know if you liked the lasagna and tag me in your photos or posts. Feel free to leave me a comment.

    Have a wonderful day
    Dominique

    Plant-based Eggplant Parmigiana

    Yummy eggplant dish at the Transformer in Melbourne

    Yummy eggplant dish at the Transformer in Melbourne

    During our holidays in Australia we visited Transformer Fitzroy restaurant in Melbourne. They serve a 80% plant-based (they do have some dishes with dairy but you can always opt for the vegan version) menu in an original way. We had 6 small plates and one of them was an eggplant baked with a tasty tomato sauce. So once we were home again, we craved for this delicious dish. All you need is eggplants, tomatoes and some time - it's basically a vegetable fiesta.

    Unfortunately I didn't take a lot of nice pictures from this dish but in the end it's the taste that counts :)

    This dish can either be enjoyed all by itself or you can serve it as a side dish. The tomato sauce is also amazing with a plate of pasta or just spread it on some dark rye bread.

     

     

     

     

    Tomato Sauce

    The tomato sauce takes some time, so I suggest you make it on a Sunday.

    INGREDIENTS:

    • 1 Kg Tomatoes
    • 1 Onion
    • 2 Garlic Gloves
    • 1 Tbsp paprika powder
    • 1 Tbsp black pepper
    • 1 Tbsp sea salt
    • 1 Tbsp dried Basil (if you have fresh one, use fresh leaves)

    INSTRUCTIONS:

    1. Wash the tomatoes and cut into small cubes
    2. In a sauce pan, heat some coconut oil and sauté the onion and garlic until transluscent
    3. Add the tomatoes and all the seasoning and let simmer (with lid) for an hour
    4. Take off the lid and let simmer for another 30 minutes or until most of the liquid is gone
    5. Add more seasoning if needed

    Eggplant Parmigiana

    INGREDIENTS (2 -3 PERSONS)

    • 3 big eggplants
    • 1 Tbsp Olive oil
    • Sea salt
    • Black pepper
    • Dried rosemary
    • Homemade tomato sauce (see above)

    INSTRUCTIONS:

    1. Pre-heat oven at 180 Celsius
    2. Wash the eggplants and remove the green part. Cut them in half and use a knife to cut a grid into the white flesh (should be deep but not through the skin)
    3. Use a brush to apply the olive oil on the white side of the eggplant. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and rosemary (you can also use some other herbs and spices)
    4. Put the eggplants cut face on top on a baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes
    5. Once they are baked, put them into an oven safe form and cover with your tomato sauce. You can then top it with roasted capsicum and Parmesan cheese (or nutritional yeast if you want it to be dairy free)
    6. Bake again for 15 minutes and enjoy

     

    Let me know if you re-make the dish and tag me on social media

    Nurture your happiness
    Dominique

    Green peas on my bread, please

    After having hummus as a spread for the last few weeks, it was time to come up with a new spread. The last weekend I was in Bangkok and had an amazing vegetable sandwich with green pea mousse. It tasted delicious, so I had to experiment myself. Green peas are not only rich in fiber, they also brim over with micro nutrients such as vitamin K, B, copper, folate and zinc. So next time you are looking for nutrient dense spread with all the good stuff nature has to offer - think about me and my green peas :)

    INGREDIENTS (1 JAR)

    • 1 cup frozen green peas (150g)
    • 1-2 Garlic clove
    • 2 tsp curry powder
    • 1/2 Avocado
    • 100ml Almond milk
    • 1 Lime, juice
    • Salt

    INSTRUCTIONS

    1. Mix all ingredients in a food processor and blend well. Add some more milk or water if to thick

    Of course you can also use fresh peas, just cook them before mixing. Adding the avocado makes sure, that the liposoluble vitamins(A,D,E,K) are absorbed by your body.

    Spread it!

    Since going fully plant-based three weeks ago, I was actively looking to find some great alternatives for the cheese and egg on my sourdough bread. And guess what, there are so many different spreads spreading the internet. So today I will present you three plant-based toppings for your Sunday Brunch. If my husband loved them, so will yours!

    Hummus
    This recipe you can already find here. Maybe play around a bit with the hummus and add some beet root, avocado or get further inspiration from buzzfeed.com


    Tofu scramble with tomatoes
    This is quite a great substitute for your normal scrambled eggs. You need

    • 1 block silk organic Tofu
    • 1 Tbsp Nutritional yeast
    • 1 Tsp paprika powder
    • 1 Tsp salt
    • 1 Tsp Turmeric powder
    • 1 Tbsp Coconut oil

    Mix all ingredients except for the coconut oil in a bowl and mix well. You will get a scrambled egg like mixture. Heat the coconut oil in a frying pan and fry your tofu scramble for approximately 8 minutes (the longer, the thicker it gets)


    Lentil-Curry Mousse
    On my look out for plant-based spread I came across this recipe from Ana and Nina, two Swiss Food bloggers (check out their page here). It's a great alternative to hummus and gives your breakfast an Indian touch. For my version you'll need the following:

    Hummus, Tofu scramble and Lentil-Curry paste

    Hummus, Tofu scramble and Lentil-Curry paste

    • 150g raw red/yellow lentils (important to choose red or yellow as they will get mushy)
    • 1/2 Onion
    • 1 garlic glove
    • 100ml Almond milk
    • 300ml Water
    • 1 Tsp Turmeric powder
    • 1 Tsp paprika powder
    • Salt and Pepper
    • 1 Tsp Coconut oil
    1. Heat the coconut oil in a sauce pan and sauté onion and garlic.
    2. Add lentils, almond milk, herbs and water and let simmer until the liquid is absorbed by the lentils. If they are not soggy enough, add some more water.
    3. Once the lentils are done, add salt and pepper according to your taste and let cool down.
    4. Blend everything with a blender and your lentil-curry spread is ready

     

    Buckwheat Pancakes

    Good morning everyone. What is better than to start your weekend with a nice staple of amazing pancakes? Nothing, that's right. Therefore let me share with you this amazing buckwheat pancake recipe with apple gula melaka syrup. I got inspired by a very talented, plant based living couple - André and Rita from Cocoon Cooks. Check their page for further plant based recipes, they have a wide selection from breakfast, dinner, sweets and drinks.

    INGREDIENTS (4 Pancakes)

    • 70g buckwheat flour
    • 1/4 apple, diced
    • 1 Tsp gula melaka
    • 1 Tsp cinnamon
    • 100ml Almond milk
    • 1 Tsp flax seeds + 3 Tsp water
    • Coconut oil

    INGREDIENTS Apple sauce

    • 3/4 apple
    • 1 Tsp gula melaka
    • 1 Tsp cinnamon
    • 1 Tsp coconut oil

    INSTRUCTION

    1. Mix flax seeds with water and let soak for 5 minutes
    2. In the meantime, prepare pancake batter by mixing flour, apple, gula melaka, cinnamon and almond milk
    3. Add flax seed mixture to the batter and combine well
    4. Heat some coconut oil in a frying pan and with a spoon form little pancakes with your batter. Fry from each side for 2-3 minutes until golden brown
    5. In a sauce pan, heat all ingredients for the caramel sauce and pour over your pancakes

     

    Vegan breakfast explosion

    A plant based whole foods diet should be the basis of everyones nutrition - lots of vegetables and fruits, legumes, grains and beans, nuts, seeds and other healthy fats. If you come from a western country cheese and cold cuts are essentials for the breakfast table and are usually accompanied by some sort of eggs.

    This vegan open-faced sandwich is the perfect plant based start into a productive day. The bread is a spelt-rye mixture and the olive paste gives a salty flavor. The Falafel provide the necessary proteins and fiber and with the avocado you get some filling healthy fats.

    INGREDIENTS:

    Falafel (10 small balls)

    • 1 can chickpeas
    • 2 Tbsp spelt flour
    • 1/4 onion, cut
    • 1-2 gloves garlic
    • 1 Tsp cayenne pepper
    • 1 Tsp curry powder
    • 1 Tsp turmeric
    • Salt and pepper to taste

    Olive paste

    • 150g pitted black olives
    • 30g caperes
    • 1/2 lemon, juice
    • 1 Tbsp olive oil

    Spelt-Rye Bread

    • 200g Spelt flour (whole grain)
    • 350g Rye flour (whole grain)
    • 2pck dry yeast
    • 350ml lukewarm water
    • 1 Tsp salt

     

    INSTRUCTIONS

    1. Pre-heat oven at 180 Celsius
    2. For the bread, dissolve yeast in water and mix everything together. Kneed until you get a soft dough. Let raise for 2 hours.
    3. For the falafel, drain and rinse chickpeas. In food processor add chickpeas with all the remaining ingredients and blend well. Form little balls with your hands.
    4. For the olive paste, put all ingredients in a food processor and blend well
    5. From the bread dough form a loaf and let raise for another 30 minutes. Then bake for about 45 minutes.
    6. Heat some coconut oil in a frying pan and roast falafel gently from all sides.
    7. Top a piece of bread with some olive paste, avocado and falafel. (you can also take a whole grain wrap instead of the bread)

    Homemade Hummus On Toasted Sweet Potato

    Let yourself emerge on a journey to the middle east with this delicious hummus recipe. Not only are chickpeas a great source of protein, they are also high in fibre to stabilise your blood sugar levels. You can use them as spread on whole grain bread or as I did on toasted sweet potatoes, or you just dip your raw vegetables in it. 

    INGREDIENTS (2-3 servings)

    • 1 can chickpeas, drained
    • 2 Tbsp tahini paste
    • 1 Garlic glove
    • 1 Tsp parpika powder
    • 1 Tsp sea salt
    • 1 Tbsp olive oil
    • 1 Medium sweet potato

    INSTRUCTION

    1. Put all ingredients except sweet potato in a food processor and blend well
    2. Cut the sweet potato in 1cm thin slices and toast for about 15 minutes
    3. Spread hummus on top of the sweet potato and garnish with fresh tomatoes

    Soba Noodles - East meets West

    Soba noodles are a great gluten free alternative to the Western Spaghetti. They are made with buckwheat flour and have a nutty taste. When buying Soba noodles read carefully the ingredients list - most of the producers replace a big quantity of the buckwheat flour with wheat. Here in Singapore I can recommend to order Eden Foods selected buckwheat Soba noddles from iherb.

    This recipe combines the Asian flavors from Soba and ginger with the Western vegetables. It is perfect for a light lunch and provides you with complex carbohydrates and filling proteins.

    INGREDIENTS (1 SERVING)

    • 80g Soba Noodles
    • 1 medium carrot
    • 150g frozen green peas
    • 1/2 onion
    • 1 Tbsp grated ginger
    • 1 Tsp ground paprika
    • 1 Tbsp coconut oil
    • vegetable stock
    • soy sauce

    INSTRUCTION

    1. Heat coconut oil in a frying pan and glaze onion
    2. Deglaze with vegetable stock and add green peas plus carrots
    3. Cook Soba noodles as indicated on packaging
    4. Let vegetables cook until soft, add ginger, paprika and some soy sauce
    5. Mix noodles with sauce and enjoy

     

    Whole meal pasta and chickpea salad

    Most people have a negative position towards pasta. Pasta makes you fat, pasta has too many carbohydrates etc. Let me tell you - all bull***! This meal includes complex carbohydrates providing whole meal pasta and in combination with protein rich chickpeas it is the perfect lunch to bring to your office.

    INGREDIENTS (1 person)

    • 80g raw whole meal pasta or quinoa
    • 150g canned & drained chickpeas (in water - try these)
    • 18pc cherry tomatoes
    • 5pc black olives
    • salt & pepper
    • fresh basil leaves

    INSTRUCTION

    1. Prepare pasta/quinoa as indicated on package
    2. Drain chickpeas and rinse with water
    3. Mix chickpeas with tomatoes, olives and pasta. Add salt & pepper according to your taste. Garnish with basil leaves