This stroganoff-inspired stew uses a not-so-secret ingredient that we are currently obsessed with. Blended beans! For a shortcut to a creamy, luscious, perfect-textured sauce, try blending beans! We have even started blending beans into our pasta sauces for extra creamy texture and nutrients. Beans are thrifty and so incredibly healthy. They are a great crop for the planet too, a real win win. Meaty mushrooms and tasty cubes of celeriac are simmered with this simple sauce to create a satisfying stew with complex flavours and the perfect silky texture, usually only achieved by low, slow cooking. This is wonderful winter food which will warm you up from the inside. Enjoy with rice or mashed potatoes and a side of winter greens.
Ingredients (serves 4)
2 tbsp olive oil
about 20 chestnut mushrooms, halved
1/2 a celeriac, peeled and cut into bite sized cubes
1 tin of kidney beans, drained
1 tbsp bouillon powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp smoked paprika
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
approx 300ml of cream or milk
salt and pepper to taste
fresh dill, cooked rice/potatoes & wilted greens to serve
In a heavy bottomed pot, sauté the mushrooms and celeriac with the oil and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Cook over a medium heat, stirring often, until the vegetables are softened and have taken on a lovely golden colour. Alternatively, you could do this in the oven or airfryer.
Place the beans, bouillon, paprika, garlic, tomato puree, mustard and milk/cream in a blender. Add salt and pepper to your taste and blend into a smooth cream.
when your mushrooms and celeriac are cooked through, pour the kidney bean cream over them and simmer and stir to warm through. Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed.
Serve over cooked rice or mashed potatoes and scatter over freshly torn dill and a good grind of black pepper. Enjoy!
Every feast needs a centre piece and this bronzed pastry parcel looks the part on a festive table. Stuffed with delicious veggies, nuts and cheese its a real crowd pleaser.
The best part is that this can be made ahead of time, make and wrap the filling and keep it in the fridge until the day of the dinner, then add its pastry coat and bake. Serve with your favourite potatoes, side veg and a delicious gravy.
This homemade gravy powder is so handy to have on standby in your kitchen cupboard. It will bring bags of flavour to your festive feast and can also be used to thicken up and flavour stews and pies. To make this powder into gravy, we like to use a nutty browned butter and rich red wine base. Read on below to see how it comes together.
6 tbsp corn starch (or potato starch or tapioca)
3 tbsp crumbled dried mushrooms
6 tbsp vegetable bouillon powder
1 tbsp garlic or onion powder/granules
2 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp ground black pepper
Simply measure the ingredients into a strong blender and process until they come together into a fine powder. Then store in a clean, dry, labelled jar.
Ingredients to Make Gravy:
1 tbsp butter
100ml red wine (white wine works well too)
3 tbsp gravy powder (above)
salt to taste if needed
Add a tbsp of butter to a hot pan (we use Naturli vegan butter which browns beautifully) and cook for a couple of minutes on a high heat until it foams then starts to brown. (Browning the butter creates a complex, nutty flavour and the butter also gives the gravy a shiny and silky texture.)
Next add 100ml of red wine and boil for a few minutes to cook off the alcohol and reduce slightly.
Meanwhile whisk 3 tbsp of the gravy powder with 300ml of milk (we use delicious, creamy oat milk). When the red wine has reduced, add the milk mixture to the pot, then whisk and simmer until the gravy is thickened. If you’d like a looser gravy, add a splash more milk or water.
Taste and season if needed with a pinch of salt. Serve hot and enjoy!
This creamy, comforting, warm winter side dish will make you cosy from the inside out. It’s special enough for the Christmas table, but once you try it, you’ll be making it to go alongside all your winter roasts. Deep, dark, earthy mushrooms mingle perfectly with sweet parsnips and rich cream. The nutmeg, garlic and bay leaves infuse beautifully into the sauce making your whole house smell amazing!
250g fresh mushrooms, thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves, peeled & sliced
1 tbsp oil
600g potatoes, thinly sliced
600g parsnips, thinly sliced
1 tbsp dried mushrooms (soaked in 400ml boiling water)
1 tsp ground nutmeg
2 bay leaves
400ml cream (oat cream works well)
salt & pepper to taste
Turn your oven on to 200C and prepare all your ingredients. Boil a kettle and cover a tbsp of dried mushrooms with 400ml of just-boiled water. Find a large, oven and hob safe pot with a lid (or use a large soup pot on the stove and decant to an oven dish to bake).
Sauté the sliced fresh mushrooms for 5 minutes with the oil, garlic and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Once soft add the potatoes and parsnips to the pan.
Pour the mushroom stock (including all the now rehydrated mushrooms) over the vegetables. Add the bay leaves & nutmeg and season well with salt and pepper. Carefully stir to combine the ingredients, then level out with the back of the spoon.
Pour over the cream then pop the lid onto the pot and simmer for around 8-10 minutes until the vegetables are just soft. Remove the lid, use the back of the spoon to push all the veg under the liquid. Taste and add more seasoning if needed.
Place the dish in the oven for 20-30 minutes to brown and reduce into a gorgeous gratin. Allow the dish to sit out and set for 5 minutes before serving in generous scoops. Enjoy!
Variations of this cozy Autumn dish are always popular in our house. Grab a warm bowl and a spoon and curl up on the sofa for dinner tonight. A warm bowl of orzo is just gorgeous, one of our ultimate comfort foods. Tell us about your variations in the comments, we love to get inspired.
Ingredients (serves 4 or 5)
1/2 a small kuri squash pumpkin, chopped into chunks
3 or 4 portobello mushrooms, halved or quartered
a drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper to taste
a large knob of butter (we use dairy free Naturli)
1 leek, rinsed and finely chopped
3 sticks of celery, diced
5 cloves of garlic, finely diced
400g orzo pasta
1 liter of vegetable stock
a small handful of fresh herbs eg rosemary and thyme
salt and pepper to taste
your favourite cheese to serve (we stock an amazing vegan blue cheese that you have to try!)
Turn your oven on to 200C. Spread the chopped mushrooms and pumpkin out into a tray and drizzle with oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss the tray to evenly coat the veg in the seasoning. Place in the oven to roast while you prepare the orzo.
In a large, heavy bottomed pan, sauté the leek, celery and garlic with the knob of butter and a little more olive oil. Season the vegetables with a little salt and pepper and cook on a medium-high temperature for 5 minutes or so until they are softened.
Add the orzo, herbs and vegetable stock to the pan and turn down the heat to a gentle simmer. Stir, then add a lid and gently cook until the pasta has absorbed all the stock and is soft. Stir every few minutes to ensure the pasta doesn’t stick. You may also need to add a splash more water. Taste a little pasta every now and then to see if it is done or if it is drying out and needs mor liquid.
After around 20-30 minutes, both the pasta and the roasted vegetables should be ready. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary then serve in warm bowls topped with the roasted vegetables and some cheese.
Here’s another Ukrainian recipe inspired by Olia Hercules. If you love mushrooms, you’ll love this broth. It packs a mighty umami punch and is dark and delicious. I serve is as it is for a lighter meal or for a more filling meal, with these stuffed buns or with creamy mashed potatoes. If you add a spoon of soured cream or crème fraiche when you serve, the flavour is really reminiscent of a stroganoff, and of course, these flavours of umami rich mushrooms, onions, pepper, dill and cream are popular in Eastern European and Scandinavian countries, post-Soviet states, Russia and more. We all have so much more in common than what separates us, and food is one of those things where we can clearly see our commonalities.
Buckwheat is a highly nutritious, gluten free whole-grain, a great source of protein, fibre, potassium, magnesium and energy. We sell the whole grain in compostable bags here (and also useful buckwheat flour and flakes). As well as extra nutrients, buckwheat brings a bit of body and texture to the broth but you can switch it with noodles, pasta or rice as you like. Happy cooking!
Ingredients (serves 4)
200g buckwheat groats
3 bay leaves
2 tbsp crumbled dried mushrooms
1 litre of boiling water
salt and pepper to taste
2 tbsp sunflower oil
3 white onions, roughly diced
3 carrots, chopped chunkily
500g chopped mushrooms (a mix with some wild mushrooms is always more interesting, but chestnut mushrooms work well too)
a large handful or two of chopped dill
sour cream, yoghurt or creme fraiche to serve
mashed potatoes/cooked noodles/pasta/rice to serve or toast or stuffed buns…
Start by making a mushroom stock. Put the bay leaves and dried mushrooms in a glass measuring jug and boil the kettle. Pour a litre of just-boiled water in and let the stock brew.
Next toast the buckwheat groats in your soup pot. Put the pot onto a medium high heat and tumble in the buckwheat. Stir or shake the pot regularly until the buckwheat is perfectly toasted. Then tip all the grains into a bowl to use later.
Now, in the same pot, add the oil and onion. Sauté with a big pinch of salt until the onions start to colour and soften. Then add the mushrooms and carrots, more seasoning and sauté again for another 5-10 minutes until the vegetables are cooked to your liking.
Add the mushroom stock and the toasted buckwheat and simmer with the lid on until the buckwheat is cooked through but still has some bite. Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed with more salt and pepper.
Just before serving, add the dill. Enjoy as is in bowls with a dollop of cremè fraiche or with toast, buns, mashed potatoes, pasta or anything you like.
This savoury crumble is full of comforting winter vegetables and white beans. The creamy white sauce is made from seasoned oat milk thickened with a little cornflour. The oaty crumble is delicious and buttery (thanks to our new Naturli butter) and spiked with fragrant rosemary (use any winter herbs you like eg thyme or sage). Serve with a simple salad of shaved Brussels sprouts dressed with lemon and good oil. The not-so-secret ingredient which brings the dish together? Nutritional yeast! Fondly referred to as nooch, it brings a moreish, cheesy flavour to the party. What will you put in your savoury crumble?
As it’s gluten free day this week I’ve used certified gluten free oats in the crumble and gluten free Rude Health oat milk in the white sauce. If gluten isn’t an issue for you then of course you don’t need to worry about that, but if you are avoiding gluten then we can help with a range of gluten free groceries, conveniently delivered to your door.
Ingredients (serves 6)
1/2 a celeriac, peeled and cubed
1 large leek, washed and chopped
300g mushrooms, halved or quartered
3 tbsp olive oil
salt & pepper to taste
2 tins of white beans, drained
2 tbsp cornflour (or flour of your choice)
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
a handful of nutritional yeast
salt and pepper to taste (about 1/2 tsp of each)
500ml gluten free oat milk (or any milk you like)
250g gluten free porridge oats (or regular oats)
2 sprigs of fresh rosemary, stripped from stalk (or any winter herbs you like)
salt and pepper to taste – a generous pinch of each
a handful of nutritional yeast
100g butter (we use Naturli vegan blocks)
Preheat your oven to 200C. Find a baking dish and tumble in your chopped celeriac, leek and mushrooms.
Season with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Mix well then put the dish in the oven to roast the vegetables while you prepare the white sauce and crumble. Remove the dish every 10 minutes to stir.
In a mixing jug, whisk the cornflour, nutritional yeast, nutmeg, Dijon mustard, salt, pepper and a splash of the oat milk into a paste. Then add the rest of the oat milk and whisk into a thin sauce. This will cook and thicken up later in the oven. Put to one side for now.
Make the crumble in a food processor with the blade attachment. Put the oats, rosemary, nooch, salt and pepper into the processor and blend into a rough flour. Chop the butter into cubes, add to the flour mixture and pulse into a crumbly texture.
When the vegetables are cooked through (this should take around 30 minutes) add the drained white beans and sauce. Stir well then top with the crumble and return to the oven for another 20 minutes or until bubbling and golden on top.
Serve with some seasonal greens. We like thinly sliced Brussels sprouts simply dressed with good olive oil and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice for some acidity and freshness to cut through the creamy crumble.
One of our family favourites, this layered, one-pot curry is so so good. A rich layer of mushroom and red bean curry on the bottom, a fragrant layer of perfectly cooked rice in the middle and a succulent layer of cauliflower on top. Sounds complicated but it’s actually very easy. We make this one-pot meal regularly as a mid-week supper. It doesn’t take long to put together, then you just pop it in the oven to bake and you’ve got time to clear up the kitchen and help with homework or whatever else needs doing while it cooks. Then bring the pot to the table and dig in!
We stock organic rice in compostable bags, have you tried the range yet? White basmati is best for this dish as it cooks quickly, but we also have brown basmati and my personal favourite, short grain brown rice. We also have organic tins of tomatoes, beans and more. We do so much more than just fruit and veg. Add some groceries to your next order and save yourself a trip to the supermarket.
Ingredients (serves 4)
3 tbsp vegetable oil
1 onion, peeled and diced
4 cloves of garlic, peeled and diced
1 heaped tbsp curry powder
around 10 chestnut mushrooms, halved
1 tin chopped tomatoes
1 tin kidney beans, drained
salt and pepper to taste
1 small mug of basmati rice (225g)
2 small mugs of water
1/4 tsp each: ground cardamom and star anise
1 tsp rose petals (optional)
1/2 a large cauliflower, cut into florets
1/2 tsp turmeric
Turn your oven to 200C and find a deep pot or casserole dish with a lid that is safe both on the hob and in the oven.
Start by sautéing the diced onion with the oil on a medium-high heat. Stir frequently with a wooden spoon. After 5 minutes the onion should start to soften and turn golden.
Then add the mushrooms, garlic, curry powder and season well with plenty of salt (about a tsp) and pepper. Stir for a few minutes to coat the mushrooms in the seasoning and allow the spices to toast and get very fragrant.
Empty the tin of chopped tomatoes into the pot along with the drained beans. Stir well, taste and adjust the seasoning if needed, then put the lid on and let the curry simmer for a few minutes while you rinse you rice in a fine sieve.
Turn off the heat then carefully add the rinsed mug of rice to the curry. Don’t stir it in, add it in a careful layer on top of the curry and smooth it out with the back of the wooden spoon. Then slowly pour two mugs of water over the back of the spoon over the rice so that it doesn’t disturb the layer.
Add some aromatics to the rice if you like eg cinnamon sticks, cardamom pods, star anise, rose petals, saffron… I usually use a mix of ground anise and cardamom and a few rose petals.
Then place the cauliflower florets carefully into the rice and water, sprinkle them with turmeric, salt and pepper. Put the lid on the pot and put the pot in the oven to bake.
After 30 minutes, check on the rice. It should be bubbling hot and have absorbed most of the liquid. Taste a grain, if it needs longer put the lid back on and return it to the oven.
If the rice is cooked through then remove the lid, sprinkle the top of the dish with flaked coconut (or flaked almonds) and return it to the oven to toast. Just 3-5 minutes should be enough. Then it’s ready to serve. Scoop out portions ensuring each bowl gets a bit of each layer and enjoy!
Easily get 10 portions of fruit and veg into your day with this plant based St Patrick’s Day menu. No green food colouring in sight but lots of vibrant, fun, healthy ideas. Hope you have a fab day off everyone! Let us know what you are cooking to celebrate the day in the comments or over on our friendly facebook page.
Green Smoothie Pancakes
Is it even St Patrick’s Day if you don’t eat something green? Avoid the food colouring and get out your blender for these sweet (but healthy) pancakes.
Ingredients (makes 10 pancakes)
a couple of large handfuls of rinsed kale (or spinach)
Put all the ingredients except the butter and maple syrup into a smoothie maker and blend until smooth.
Heat a non-stick frying pan to medium then melt some butter and fry the pancakes in small batches for a few minutes on each side until cooked through. It’s better to cook them low and slow so that they are cooked through and not too dark on the outside.
Stack them up and serve simply with butter and a generous drizzle of maple syrup or your favourite pancake toppings.
Golden Boxty with Rainbow Slaw
Traditional Irish potato griddle cakes (but with very non-traditional grated courgette in the mashed potato batter instead of grated raw potato) are fried in butter until golden brown. Serve these ‘pots of gold’ with a rainbow slaw of fresh, raw, crunchy veg and a dollop of mayo for the perfect lunch.
mayonnaise to serve (or make your own using my easy aquafaba recipe here)
Start with the slaw. Shred the cabbage, grate the carrot and thinly slice the peppers, spring onions and chives. Mix in a bowl with the juice of half a lemon to start with and the olive oil. Taste and add more lemon juice if you like.
Preheat a frying pan and mix up the boxty batter. Put the mashed potato, grated courgette (or raw potato), flour, milk, vinegar, baking soda and salt in a mixing bowl and stir to combine. You should end up with a batter that’s a dropping consistency. If not, add more milk.
Fry in melted butter on a medium heat for about 5 or so minutes on each side. You can fry them in little fritters or in large rounds the size of the pan. Carefully flip them over when the bottom is golden brown. Add more butter to the pan before flipping if it’s looking a bit dry.
Serve warm with the rainbow slaw and a dollop of mayonnaise.
Irish Stew with Soda Dread Dumplings
Meaty mushrooms and bitter Guinness makes this stew rich and delicious and what better way to mop up the juices than with some Irish soda bread? I steam it as dumplings on top here for a hearty one pot supper but you could bake it separately if you prefer and serve it alongside. Looking for a gluten free alternative? Why not make some colcannon (mashed potato with wilted green cabbage or kale and spring onion stirred through) to go with the stew instead and use a gluten free stout in place of the Guinness?
Ingredients (serves 4-6)
2 tbsp sunflower oil
1 large onion
3 sticks of celery
4 cloves of garlic
1 mug of green lentils
1 stock cube
1 can of Guinness
2 tbsp dark brown sugar (optional – to counteract the bitterness of the Guinness)
salt and pepper to taste
chopped chives to serve
500g flour (I like 250g plain and 250g wholemeal)
1 tsp salt
2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
300ml oat milk
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp sunflower oil
Get a large pot on the hob and heat it to the highest setting.
Roughly dice the onion and add it to the pot with 2 tbsp of sunflower oil.
Roughly dice the carrots, celery and mushrooms and add them to the pot next.
Stir occasionally and allow the vegetables to take on some colour and caramelised flavour for around 10 minutes. Then peel, chop and add the 4 cloves of garlic.
Rinse your mug of green lentils and add them to the pot with the can of Guinness, the stock cube and an additional mug of water. Season the stew with salt and lots of black pepper. Give the broth a taste and add some brown sugar to counteract the bitterness of the Guinness if needed.
Then let the stew come up to a simmer while you make the soda bread dough.
Measure the dry ingredients (the flour, salt and bicarb) into a large mixing bowl and mix well to evenly disperse the bicarbonate of soda and salt. Check for lumps and sort them out now before you add the wet ingredients.
Measure the wet ingredients (the oat milk, oil and vinegar) into a measuring jug and give it a stir. This is the plant based alternative for the traditional buttermilk in the recipe. Then add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir well with a wooden spoon to form a rough dough. No need to knead, just stir well to ensure there are no dry, floury bits in the dough.
Use wet hands to form 6-8 balls of dough and place them carefully in the top of the simmering stew. Put the lid on the pot, make sure it’s turned down ow and allow the stew to simmer an the soda bread to steam for about 20-30 minutes.
Check that the lentils are cooked through then serve the hot stew and dumplings with chopped chives on top.
Mint Choc Chip Ice-Cream
This ice cream is vibrant green, creamy and sweet…but made with peas and bananas! Don’t be put off by the healthy ingredients, blended frozen banana is a creamy revelation and peas are naturally so sweet. It’s especially good if the banana is frozen when super-ripe. If you eat through your bananas from your weekly delivery then this recipe is a good way to use up those reduced over-ripe bananas at the shops. A win-win for you and for the epic food waste problem the planet is facing. I’ve used cacao nibs instead of chocolate chips because I love their bitter, dark chocolate flavour, but do feel free to substitute with real chocolate chips…especially if you are serving this to children.
optional sweetener of your choice to taste (eg maple syrup)
and a tbsp or so of cacao nibs (or sub with chocolate chips)
Peel and chop as many over-ripe bananas as you like. About one per person. Freeze them overnight on a tray until solid (with gaps between the pieces otherwise they’ll all freeze together and be very difficult to blend).
You’ll need a strong food processor with an S blade attachment. A food processor works better that a jug/smoothie blender for this.
Put the frozen banana chunks and frozen peas into your blender along with fresh mint leaves to taste.
Blend into a frozen, crumbly texture then stop the blender, scrape down the sides and blend again until vibrant green and creamy.
Taste the mixture and add a sweetener or more mint leaves if you like and blend again.
Scrape the nice cream out into a tub and stir through cacao nibs or chocolate chips. Scoop into balls and serve (they will be quite soft at this stage so for quickly) or move to the freezer to firm up until you are ready to serve.
Turn your oven to 200C. Find your biggest roasting dish and put it in the oven to heat up too.
Peel the potatoes and carrot, cut them into large chunks and just cover them with water in a big pot. Put the lid on the pot and get them on the stove to boil.
Meanwhile make the beetroot and butterbean loaf:
Toast the sunflower seeds in a dry frying pan and add them to a blender with the linseeds and oats. Pulse until coarsely combined, but still with some texture.
Grate the beetroots into a mixing bowl on the fine side of the grater. Add the drained tin of butterbeans to the bowl too.
Add the oat, sunflower seed and linseed mixture to the bowl, season well with salt and pepper (you could also add additional flavourings here like lemon zest, crushed garlic, herbs).
Using one hand, squish the mixture together into a stuffing-like mixture. You may need to add more oats as you go if your mixture is too wet. When you are at stuffing texture taste the mix for seasoning ad adjust as needed.
Then put the mixture into a baking dish or loaf tin lined with baking paper. Top with slices of mushroom a drizzle of olive oil and some salt and pepper. Then pop the dish in the oven to bake.
By now the potatoes and carrots will be par boiled so move them off the heat. Finely chop a generous couple of handfuls of herbs and put them into a bowl with the zest of a lemon, 3 crushed garlic cloves, salt, pepper and enough sunflower oil to bring it into a loose sauce.
Remove the hot, large roasting dish from the oven and drizzle it with sunflower oil. Use a slotted spoon to move the potatoes and carrots onto the hot tray and keep all the water in the pot (you’ll need this to cook the cabbage and make gravy with later).
Add the garlic/lemon/herb oil to the roasting dish of potatoes and carrots and stir to coat the veg in the mixture. Cut the zested lemon in half and add it to the roasting tray. Return the dish to the oven and get on with the greens and gravy.
Add a stock cube to the water that the carrots and potatoes were cooked in. Then rinse and chop the cabbage and add it to the pot to poach in the stocky water. When it is still slightly undercooked, use the slotted spoon to pull out the cabbage and keep it in the pan you used earlier to toast the sunflower seeds (you’ll use this to re-heat and finish cooking the cabbage when the beetroot loaf and roast veg are nearly done).
Then make the gravy. Put a tsp of dried mushrooms into the stock and bring it to the boil. You can also dip the bowl that you mixed the lemon/garlic/herb oil for the roast veg in and get all those flavours added to the gravy.
Mix the cornflour with a little cold water into a smooth paste in a cup. Then add that to the stock and simmer and stir until it has thickened into a gravy. Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed. I like to add a couple of tbsp of soy sauce to add a punchy umami flavour. You may wish to add a splash of wine or a spoon of recurrent jelly to your gravy. When you are happy with the flavour and texture of your gravy you can pour it into a jug through a sieve and keep it warm.
The beetroot and butterbean loaf and roast veg should be ready after about 40-60 minutes in the oven. Just keep an eye on them. Then re-heat the cabbage and gravy and serve!