Vegan Week Concludes

All week we have turned down tea with biscuits, exploited all soya imitations of anything creamy, and become crazed chocolate deprived women.

Today everything changed. Cheese was allowed back in our lives and we welcome it with open arms and pasta.  In my mind the only thing to do was make the cheesiest yummiest thing I could think of; Lasagne! Below is my recipe sent to me by my lovely mother, but before I share that I want to share my full conclusion of veganism.

1) I have learned vegan food is still delicious. All week we cooked a different tasting and fantastic tasting meal. I have tried different flavour combinations and instead of automatically adding cheese or mayo to my food, I have thought about adding spices, citrus and fresh flavours. I will make sure I do this more often!

2) I have learned that egg and milk are in so many products!!  Which sort of freaks me out… Crisps, biscuits, Quorn and nearly all processed foods contain them, but they are hiding from you, sniggering away as you eat them unknowingly. I am a big believer in organic and free range and am always willing to pay extra for organic milk and free range eggs, but what if the eggs in my crisps are not free range? This completely undermines me and makes my “green hippy warrior mission” a massive fraud, therefore in the future I will be looking into where ingredients come from! We depend on animals so much more than I thought.

3) Challenges are much better faced in a team. When I first made the suggestion of vegan week, I didn’t expect anyone else to jump on the band wagon but I am so glad they did! Having someone to moan with and share the cravings with made everything much more bearable! Go girl power. It has also been quite fun. Thank you girls for all the lovely meals!

Yesterday Bridget made her own falafel and they were possibly the best I have ever eaten! It made me want to make them myself from now on. They were so good I didn’t even feel the need to smother them in mayonaise, which is my usual trick. She also made potato wedges and a crunchy apple and cucumber salad, a proper vegan treat.

All in all, I will not be becoming a fully fledged vegan, however I will make a big effort to make sure everything I eat is from a happy animal. Let me know if you are vegan! I’d love to know why and how you commit to a vegan diet.

Now for something definitely not vegan: Roasted Vegetable Lasagne. cheeeeeeeeeese.

You will need:

  • 1 Aubergine
  • 1 Courgette
  • Button mushrooms
  • 1 red pepper
  • 150g baby tomatos
  • 2 red onions
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 pack of lasagne
  • 200g grated mozzarella
  • Spinach

For the cheese sauce:

  • 30g flour
  • 40g butter
  • 1 pint milk
  • 1 teaspoon mustard
  • 200g grated cheddar

1) Chop up all of your veg and pop them in a roasting pan with lots of oil. Pop them in the oven at 200 degrees for around 35 mins.

2) While the veg is roasting, cook the sauce. Make a roux by melting the butter into the flour until it makes a thick paste. Then add the milk and bring it to the boil while whisking. It will take some time, but it will thicken into a lovely gloopy sauce. Then turn down the heat and mix in the cheddar cheese and mustard. You can’t really taste the mustard, but it makes a richer sauce and brings out the cheesiness.

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3) pour on some of the cheese sauce into a dish, then layer up some roasted veg, spinach, mozzarella then pasta sheet. Repeat this and finish with a topping of more cheese sauce and mozzarella.

4) Bake in the oven at 180 degrees for 30-35 mins.

It was just what I needed for a slight hangover and a cheese deprived belly.

If you are wondering how I did the animated Instagram type stirry thing, it is this new cool app I have found! I will do a post on it soon and tell you all about it.

Thanks for watching and taking an interest in vegan week!

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Vegan- Day 4

First, I am sorry, but day 3 got lost in the post…

Today is our 4th day of being vegan!! which means my 4th day without chocolate. I couldn’t hack it so I went out and bought a vegan chocolate bar, which was surprisingly nice.

If being vegan is doing anything to me it is making me think. The fact that so many every day items like chocolate and crisps contain milk and eggs makes me realise how huge the farming industry must be. Obscure products which you wouldn’t expect to contain animal bi-products, do! Did you know some wine is not vegan? Weird…

I am still missing mayonaise a lot. I hate ketchup so sauce is fairly limited!! Yesterday I made my sweet potato wedges, but they were incredibly lonely without their usual mate Garlic Mayonaise.  *Double sob* In an attempt to comfort them, I made a creamy avocado dip which went a little like this:

You will need:

  • Avocado
  • Handfull of spinach
  • 1 clove of garlic

1) Chop the spinach finely and wilt it. This can be done in the microwave with a bit of water.

2) Crush a garlic clove and mash it up with the avocado flesh. Then stir in the spinach. Done!

Dinner tonight was an amazing lentil thai curry made by Bethany. She proved that vegan food is definitely not tasteless! And we all cleared our bowls. Her lovely recipe is from one of my favourite blog sites- Pinchofyum. You can get it here!

She made it her own by adding lemon salted courgettes, which I will be posting separately in just a sec! Along with the Paella I promised you. Pinky promise.

Thank you Bethany dinner was amazing!!!

Vegan- Day 2

Today was fine, I kept all strange vegan bars at arms lengh and tucked into some peanut butter toast. Peanut butter is up there in my top 5 favourite foods of all time so my day was always going to be at least slightly good.

I have also realised that I probably eat vegan more often than I think. I had baked beans in a toasted wrap for lunch; vegan but nothing out of the ordinary. Then a dinner of gnocchi, courgette, aubergine, chickpeas and pine nuts was cooked by the lovely Louey and I can’t wait to cook it again! I usually like to have a sauce with gnocchi, and it is often something cheesy, but this recipe was sauceless and tasted amazingggggg.

What’s more is that it’s an all in one dish, so less washing up.

The special thing about this meal is that the gnocchi is roasted! I won’t lie to you, when Lou first mentioned roasting it I was a little skeptical. Baked gnocchi? What?! But it is so good.

I’ll share her special recipe with you so you may try it yourself.

You will need:

  • 2 courgettes cut into batons
  • 1 sliced aubergine
  • 2 onions in quarters
  • 1 pack of vegan safe gnocchi
  • 1 can of chickpeas
  • 3 glugs of oil
  • salt
  • 2 tsp chilli powder
  • 100g pine nuts

.Set the ovan to 200 degrees and put the oil in a large baking pan. Throw all the veg in the pan with the ghochi and the chickpeas, then season with salt and chilli powder.

.Roast for 40 mins

.Add the pine nutes and roast for another 10 mins

.Then it is ready to serve.

Vegan has never been so easy or tasted so good. Thank you Lou! Hopefully tomorrow will feel as normal, maybe peanut butter and roast gnocchi is the key!

Vegan- Day 1

Vegan week has begun. But not before I had eaten the biggest cheese fest of my life on sunday night. We tucked into a cheese bomb of veggie lasagne and cheesy garlic bread, made by my housemate Beth. It was amazing even if she did set the fire alarm of a few times…

Life was good. Especially as I made eggy, custardy, creamy bread and butter pudding for desert. Life was really good.

Today is Monday and life is a little less cheesy, eggy and custardy. In fact it is bare of any source of dairy, but so far it isn’t too hard. The trickiest bit so far is snacks! Instead of tucking into a chocolate bar or cereal bar I am left with… rasins. I did buy myself a Nak’d bar, but it tasted a little bit like muddy cardboard. I now know why they are called Nak’d bar; they are naked of all possible flavour.

The other girls struggled a bit more and ate nothing all day. I told them off and filled them up with a dinner of vegan paella, with lemon salted courgettes and spicy baked chickpeas. Unfortunately I added the whole bag of rice fearing that there wouldn’t be enough for everyone. There was definitely enough. There was so much it took years to cook and I think we could eat paella for the rest of the week if we needed. Whoops. I’ll give you the recipe tomorrow, in the meantime here’s a sneak preview:

I am also making a video blog of my week, at the end of the week I will share it with you. Expect ratty faces, ratty voices and whining about my need for mayonaise.

Vegan Club

Starting on Monday, me and a few of my other bloggy housemates, who you can find at Blondonblonde and at Amazingmaison, are becoming vegan for the week. Eek.

This means no eggs, dairy, fish, meat, derivatives of the former, and honey. For me this will be tricky, mostly due to my insane obsession with mayonaise. I put it on everything, even on toast with peanut butter. It also means no melty cheese, sob.

But we love a challenge, and by doing it as a team it should be quite fun! (do not quote me on that until next sunday.)

The Rules of Vegan Club

1st RULE: You do not talk about vegan club.

2nd RULE: You DO NOT talk about Vegan Club.

3rd RULE: All who take part should do so whole heartedly.

4th RULE: There will be no consumption of eggs, dairy, fish, meat, chocolate, cakes, biscuits, sweets, non-vegan sauces or honey.

5th RULE: All meals should be recorded

6th RULE: A video diary must be made

7th RULE: Think Vegan, be vegan.

Sooo these rules are not all true, we are not quite as cool or exclusive as Fight club, but rules 3 to 7 do apply!

Today I made pancakes with the excuse that “I need to use up my eggs and milk” I then piled them with everything sugary because my sweet tooth is big in the game right now.

Peanutbutter, jam and custard.

Tomorrow we are making a veggie lasagne with garlic bread so hopefully we can get a good cheese fix.

Check in on our blogs all of next week to see how we are getting on with being vegan, watch out for some embarrassing and suffering people on video, and wish us luck!