Archive | April, 2012

Sweet Chestnut and Apple Soup

28 Apr

This delicious recipe was submitted by our supporter Joop from the Netherlands. Thanks so much for the recipe! I *hope* I managed to copy this into correct English faithfully :)

Ingredients: 500 g apples, 500 g onions, 3 carrots, 2 turnip tops, 1 jar tomato puree, 750 g mashed sweet chestnuts, pepper & salt to taste, 50 g vegan marg, 2 vegetarian bouillon cubes, 1 tbsp each dried basil & thyme, handful of fresh parsley, soy cream to serve (optional extra), celery and/or leek (optional), sugar to taste, salt and pepper to taste.

sweet chestnut and apple soup

sweet chestnut and apple soup

Method: Peel and core the apples, then cut them into slices. Finely chop the onions, the carrots and the turnip tops. You can optionally add in a bit of chopped celery or leek here if you like a more “rounded” flavour.

Put a large pan on the heat and melt the butter. Gently fry the onions, carrots, turnips, apples and celery/leek if using until the apples are soft. Add the sweet chestnut mash and tomato puree and let it stew briefly. Cover with water, adding the bouillon cubes and sugar to taste. Let it simmer for an hour, tasting as you go along and adding appropriate spices.

joop cooking

joop cooking

Take off the heat and blend til smooth.

Serve with a little soy cream and chopped parsley.

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Greta on Veganism and Body Image in Hospital

26 Apr

One of the reasons we have been a bit quiet over the last week is that I have been in hospital. It’s been a rough time; I was admitted because of stomach pain and rapid weight loss so I have been a bit scared about it impacting on my cooking and eating abilities!

I was quite impressed that the hospital said they could offer me vegan meals, although they have only actually managed to get them to me half the times that they have said they would! The whole place is crazy disorganised. The few times they have made it to me I have been very impressed; they have the best vegan mashed potatoes I have ever had! It definitely shows that veganism is coming more into the mainstream, a few years ago when I was in here they didn’t even know what vegan meant.  I have been making up the missed meals by the other naked vegan cooks bringing me in food; I think I am getting vegetable pakoras later!

I have lost over 10% of my body weight in the last couple of weeks which has been bringing up some very odd feelings for me. I struggled with a borderline eating disorder when I was younger and have only been getting to grips with loving the body I have over the last year or so, it’s scary to see myself shrinking again! Plus all the doctors and nurses keep asking me if it was intentional weight loss, even though they know I am here because of digestive problems. I am hoping to be home soon and cooking up lots and lots of high calorie food so I can get back on track.

Cartoonist / Illustrator wanted

20 Apr

We are very excited to announce that we’re currently in the process of creating our very first Naked Vegan Cookbook! The idea for us to include writing on positive body image, veganism, and of course lots of yummy recipes. We currently get 20,000 hits per week on this blog, and have good links with vegan and naturist communities, which we think will give us a good base from which to publicise the book.

Having being inspired by this recent post featuring a comic strip – we have taken the decision not to include any naked photos in the book. Instead we want to have cartoons of naked people to go with photos of the food. This is because we think it will make it much easier to get the book stocked in mainstream bookshops, also because it will look really cool!

There will be quite a high commitment level to this project, we will need illustrations for 100-200 pages of content, to be produced between the start of June and the end of August this year. The book will then be completed and printed in September, and hopefully selling well by christmas time. We are not offering any money up-front, instead you will be entitled to 40% of all profits from the book. You can live anywhere in the world, we can collaborate through skype and other collaborative tools.

Interested in getting involved? Please send us an email at nakedvegancooking[at]gmail.com telling us who you are and why you want to get involved. Let us know of any relevant experience you have, and how you plan to organise your time to ensure that all the work gets done on schedule. Please also include a mock-up of a front cover incorporating the below image and any any other examples of artwork you think we might like to see. The deadline is the 4th of May.

After the deadline, we will take a week or so to discuss between ourselves and make a shortlist. The shortlisted individuals will then be interviewed either in person (if your local) or by skype.

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Vegan Pastitsio

19 Apr

Becky made this fabulous recipe for a dinner party a couple of months ago. Absolutely delicious. Enjoy!

For the red sauce: 4 tbsp olive oil, 454g of prepared soya mince, 1 large onion (chopped finely), 4 cloves garlic (chopped finely or crushed), 600g passata, 2 tbsp fresh parsley (chopped), 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp ground allspice, salt and pepper to taste (be generous with the pepper), about 250ml of white wine (optional)

For the béchamel sauce: 50g vegan sunflower spread, 20g wheat flour, 600 ml soy milk, 1 tsp dried vegetable stock (bouillon is best), 1/2 tsp mace, 1 tsp nutmeg, 1 bay leaf, 12 black peppercorns, salt and pepper to taste

Also: 400g wholewheat penne or rigatoni, nutritional yeast flakes to serve (optional)

For the greek style salad: 100ml extra virgin olive oil, 1 jar of greek style black olives, 1 cucumber, 4 tomatoes, half a red onion, 1 sprig of oregano, salt to taste

Start by preparing the soya mince if you need to and then make the red sauce. Heat the olive oil on a gentle heat in a deep frying pan and add the onions. Let them soften for a couple of minutes before adding the garlic. Don’t let the onions change colour (turn it down if they start to!).

While the onions and garlic are softening in the pan bring a saucepan of water to the boil with a pinch of salt and start cooking the pasta.

Turn the heat on the frying pan up, add the mince and fry for around 5 minutes. Next pour in the passata, parsley, cinnamon, the wine if you’re using it and the salt and pepper. Stir it well on a high heat for a minute then reduce to simmer.

Once the pasta is cooked but still firm, drain it with a colander and set aside.

Preheat your oven to 200ºc / gas mark 5 and start making the white sauce. Melt the sunflower spread in a saucepan, add the flour and stir into a smooth paste. Slowly add the milk a bit at a time stirring lots to make sure it doesn’t get lumpy. Add the dried stock, bay leaf, peppercorns and mace, simmer on a moderate heat and stir every 5 minutes until its a bit thicker than gravy.

Meanwhile, make the salad by dicing the cucumber and tomatoes into chunky pieces and slice the onion into small half rounds. Mix them in a serving bowl with the olives, olive oil, oregano and salt. Leave the salad in the fridge for a bit for the flavours to develop.
Line the bottom of a deep lasagne pan or baking dish with half the pasta in a single layer. We’re a bit picky and try to make most of them line up but it doesn’t matter too much. Press the pasta down and spoon in all of the red sauce on top of it. Then add the rest of the pasta on top of the sauce. Pour in the white sauce on top of the pasta and sprinkle with yeast flakes or vegan cheese if you are using them. Put the whole thing in the oven for about three quarters of an hour. Make sure to let it settle for 10 – 15 minutes after you take it out (otherwise it might end up a pasta-y mess when you try to serve it). Enjoy!

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Arab Spring Basboosa Cake

12 Apr

This recipe for a delicious Arabic cake comes from our lovely friend Steve, we all tried some at a housing co-op meeting.

Basboosa is a traditionally Arabic semolina-based cake. Most recipes for it online call for yoghurt and honey, but I found one that used milk instead of yoghurt (bizarrely, on an Egyptian tourism website) and veganised it with soya milk, and used rose jam instead of  honey in the syrup.

Rose jam can be found in many Asian/Middle Eastern supermarkets. It’s made from rose petals and, despite the name, is more like a thick syrup in consistency than a jam. If you can’t find it, you can substitute any non-lumpy jam/marmalade, or experiment with things like treacle or golden syrup.

Ingredients for cake: 3 cups semolina, 1 cup flour, 1/2 cup shredded coconut (optional, you could also use things like flaked almonds), 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder, 1 cup sugar, 1 cup sunflower oil, 1 cup soya milk

Ingredients for syrup: 2 cups sugar, 2 cups boiling water, 1 whole lemon, 3-4 teaspoons rose jam

Preheat the oven to 175 degrees C/350 degrees F. Mix all the dry cake ingredients thoroughly in a large bowl. Add the oil and mix again, then add the milk and mix again until blended (it should be less “wet” than ordinary cake mix). Line a large rectangular cake tin with baking paper, spoon in the mixture and flatten it to be all the same thickness. Bake for about 30 minutes (during which time you can make the syrup, see below). Take it out of the oven and cut into squares while still in the tin, then put it back into the oven for another 10 minutes.

To make the syrup, peel the top layer of skin (i.e. only the yellow zesty bit, not the white pithy bit underneath) off the lemon with a potato peeler (you will get small strips of peel). Put this in a pan with the sugar, the juice of the same lemon, rose jam and water. Boil without covering while the cake is baking (don’t let it boil over, but keep it boiling fairly vigorously) – it should thicken a bit as the water evaporates, but stay liquid.

When you take the cake out of the oven for the second time, pour the syrup evenly over it while still in the tin. Cover with a tea towel
and leave to cool. This recipe produces about 24-30 small squares of cake.

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Back on Facebook!

12 Apr

A couple of weeks ago we were sad to find that our facebook page had been deleted, they gave us no warning and didn’t even notify us afterwards. It was such a shame because we had collected thousands of ‘likes’ and people had linked to lots of other interested things on there. We sent them an email asking for the page to be put back up but got no reply. Anyway we are giving it another go, and this time only posting pictures of the food on facebook, you will have to click through to the blog to see the other pictures.

You can check out our new page here. Please like and share :)

Vegan Hot Cross Buns

8 Apr

We are so, so excited about this recipe that has been submitted to us from some friends. Our excitement can be said to be caused by three things: 1) Its EASTER! – which means loads of chocolate, hot cross buns, Easter egg hunts, etc… 2) These gorgeous hot cross buns have parsnip in! YUM and 3) the recipe comes in COMIC format! which is a first for us at Naked Vegan Cooking!

Don’t worry if for whatever reason you can’t read the text on the comics – we have included relatively decent descriptions in the ALT text. If you are using a screen reader these will be read out for you by your reader, and if you are using Internet Explorer you can read these by rolling your mouse over the text.

Thanks so much to the submitters of this recipe! The artist blogs other comics and musings over at unnecessaryinsufficient – you should check them out :)

text reads: "Its time for Naked Vegan Hot Cross Buns!"

Ingredients: to make 20-25, you will need: naked vegan cooks (as many as you like), 3 cups flour (half bread, half plain), 2 parsnips (not everyone puts parsnips in their hot cross buns and you dont have to either), third cup oil, a block of yeast, 2+ handfuls of sultanas (mixed fruit is also good), ginger, half and orange, sugar, one and half cups warm water, half a cup soy milk, spices! (cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, black pepper, go nuts! - nuts might also be good). Each ingredient has a cute cartoon drawn of it.

Method: 1. Mix the lump of yeast with a tbsp of sugar and some of the water. Leave for 10-20 mins. (Cartoon shows: a female cartoon person stirring yeast saying "Let it breed!"). 2. Mix the flour, sugar, and all the dry flavours together in a big bowl. 3. Grate the parsnips, ginger, orange rind and fry in a little oil and sugar . (Cartoon shows female figure stirring flour saying "3 cups makes enough for my family too... but youll get the all if they are crap!", male figure who is peeling parsnips responds "Why would that be...? Parsnips are great!"). 4. If you have time now, make a bit of pastry to go on the top later (start thinking of what designs you could use) (Cartoon: female figures says "If I was martyred for a religion today, I would have my symbol being the chair, - from the electric chair" male figure says "That would be a good symbol"). Next pane: Is your yeast ready? female figure says "Listen to it fizzing!" Male figure says "eek!" Its ready. 5. Make a dip in the dry recipe and pour your yeast in and stir. Add the rest of the liquids. (Cartoon: female figure says: Will you feel confident putting this up on the internet?" Male figure says: "No!". 5b. Resolve to have a conversation with family, friends and co-workers about body image.

6. Squeeze in the orange juice too. (Cartoon: female figure, squeezing orange, says: "Squeeze it til all its blood comes out". Male figure says "Vegan blood!"). 7. Add the parsnips, sultanas and anything else you still have left. (cartoon shows male figure with mouth full, angry female figure with empty packet saying: "If you still have anything left!". 8. Cool, now leave that baby to rise for half an hour! (more is fine). (Cartoon shows: bowl on the side, two heads peeking over, waiting). 9. Has it risen? Whack it and watch it deflate! (Cartoon shows female figure whacking the mix and watching it deflate). 10. Knead the dough. Tell this joke: "What do you get when you pour boiling water down a rabbit hole? Hot cross bunnies!". 11. Divide this mixture into lots of little buns on a baking tray. Leave a few centimetres between them. (cartoon shows: male figure juggling with blobs of mixture).

12. Get that pastry from earlier and decorate the buns with your favourite designs and symbols. Go wild!"; (Cartoon shows both figures decorating buns with squatter symbol, infinity polyamory symbol, lovehearts, anarchist A symbol, female sign, and chair). 13. Preheat the oven to 250 degrees C. Cartoon shows oven on fire with male figure saying "These are metaphorical flames because thats hot. You should probably stop if your oven actually looks like this" 14. Leave everything to rise for 20 mins. Cartoon shows female figures feet in the air, male asks "What are you doing?" female responds "putting my feet up!" 15. Bake at 250 degrees for 5 mins then turn it down to 180. 16. Mix a glaze from orange juice and sugar. Cartoon shows oven on fire. Female figure says "the oven is on fire!" Male figure responds "only metaphorically!". 17. When the buns start to brown, glaze them and give them a few more minutes. They will have cooked for about 20 in all. Cartoon: female figure says "we dont have a glazing brush". Male figure responds: "I have my toothbrush" 18. Take them out, and share them out! Cartoon of both figures with buns, hands reaching in for them.

Vegan hot cross buns with various symbols on them.

hot cross buns!

naked male holding tray of buns

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Onion Bhajis

3 Apr

This recipe comes from our lovely friend Jennie, who cooks some rather delicious food over at the Difficult Dinner Guests blog, you should check it out!

Jennie with onion bhaji's

Ingredients: 3 large onions (sliced very fine), 2 medium chillies (sliced), 3 cloves garlic (sliced),  1 tbsp olive oil, Bunch chopped coriander, 1 tsp cardamom seeds, 1 tsp turmeric, 1/2 tsp chilli powder, 1 tsp garam masala, Salt and pepper, Gram flour and water

Method:
Fry spices separately in a pan and grind together in a pestle and mortar.

Chop the onions, chillies and garlic finely and mix together in a large bowl with the chopped coriander. Add the fried spices and olive
oil and mix together into a paste. Add in the gram flour and water until the mix turns into a sticky, yellow coloured paste that is quite
watery.

Place spoon fulls of the mix into hot oil (vegetable/sunflower) and fry until crispy. Place on paper towels to soak up excess oil. When
all the mix has been fried, double-dip the bhajis until delightfully crispy.

Onion bhajis

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