Slow Cooker Moroccan Vegetable Stew

These days trying to get dinner on the table at an appropriate time is a near impossible task, most of the time we just eat  salads and stir fried veggies.  Its still tasty, but sometimes I just want something a little fancier.  When I do get time I can make some gourmet tasting meals, but why waste that energy when I just want to play with my cute little baby.

In comes the trusty slow – cooker.

This Moroccan stew is the perfect dump and forget meal.  I mean you can saute the onions and garlic before dumping it in the slow cooker, but I don’t bother and it comes out great.  The amazing flavours of Moroccan cooking makes this stew something really special and so easy to prepare.

Serve it with wholewheat couscous, cauliflower rice or a delicious crusty bread.  The possibilities are endless!  You don’t even have to use the same vegetables.  Use whatever you have on hand or your favourite vegetable combinations, this is a very versatile recipe so experiment!

SLOW COOKER MOROCCAN VEGETABLE STEW – serves 6

Ingredients

  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 inch ginger, peeled and minced
  • 1 small butternut, peeled and cubed
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled and cubed
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup kale, chopped
  • 1/2 cup dried apricots chopped
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 can chickpeas, drained
  • 1/2 tsp  ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp sweetener of choice
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 3 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 tbsp cornflour mixed with 2 tbsp water – optional
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Add all ingredients except the cornflour and 2 tbsp water.  Stir to combine. Cover and cook on low for 7 – 8 hours or on high for 3 – 4 hours.

If you want a thicker stew add the cornflour mix and stir until it thickens.  Taste and season to taste.

Serve with couscous, quinoa or anything you like.  This tastes even better the next day.

Flavourful Aquafaba Mayonnaise

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, everyone in the vegan/ allergy world has heard about the miracle that is aquafaba! If you haven’t its okay, my dear little rock dwelling friend, now you know about the miracle that is basically bean juice…..Yes, bean juice, or the brine left behind in a can of chickpeas for the less dramatic.  This miracle brine has been a lifesaver for egg-free cooking, being able to be whipped up to make light and fluffy meringue, macaroons, replacing eggs in cakes and baked goods and making the most amazing thick egg free mayonnaise.

This flavourful mayonnaise is something you definitely need to try.  Garlicky with  the perfect amount of tang, this is a recipe to keep bookmarked and keep making over and over. Its also really versatile, play around with it until you have something that makes your taste-buds sing, if you like more garlic.  Add it! This is a perfectly flavoured recipe for me, but we all like things differently.  Add some herbs for a fancier mayonnaise or an added taste kick.  Just be prepared to feel like a cooking genius, this recipe is that easy to whip up, but will impress all your friends and family.

FLAVOURFUL AQUAFABA MAYONNAISEserves 16 

Aquafaba  Mayonnaise

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp aquafaba, the leftover brine from a can of chickpeas, or freshly cooked beans.
  • 1 heaped tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 – 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 a lemon, juiced and zested
  • 1/2 tsp – 1 tsp liquid sweetener
  • salt to taste
  • 3/4 – 1 cup oil ( I used olive oil, but sunflower or canola would work)

Directions

Combine all the ingredients except the oil in a blender or food processor.

While blending on low-medium, start adding the oil slowly.  About a tablespoon at a time, until you’ve used up all the oil.   The mixture will thicken up fast.

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Taste and adjust seasoning.

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Transfer to a bowl or glass jar.  Store in fridge for 2 weeks.  Use on everything!

Baked Pumpkin Custard (Gluten Free, Sugar Free, Vegan)

After finding out how easy it is to make pumpkin puree (even with the long wait for all the water to drip out) I’ve been on an insane everything MUST be pumpkin flavoured kick! and with Thanksgiving and Christmas coming up, its the best time to be all pumpkin crazed.  My dark chocolate pumpkin bread was a bust, a very delicious pudding like bust, but these baked pumpkin custards were a great success! Sometimes you have to mess up one recipe to find an even yummier other recipe.

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Perfectly spiced and served in individual bowls, this dessert makes portion control so easy, but what makes it even more special is the fact that is sugar free, gluten free and vegan.  Its the perfect no guilt treat to serve for any holiday celebration, but don’t just serve it for the holidays.  Lets just build a pumpkin custard swimming pool and eat this dessert all the time! Yes, that seems like the only solution that will work.

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This recipe popped into my mind after I made the most amazing pumpkin pie filling for my pumpkin pie bars, its just so good that I could have been content with just eating the filling and calling the crust an unnecessary luxury.  Don’t get me wrong the crust is the best part of the pumpkin pie bars, but sometimes you just want a whole bowl of delicious, creamy pudding to get you through the baking process! So lets get custard making!

BAKED PUMPKIN CUSTARD serves 4

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Ingredients

  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 1 can pumpkin puree or 2 cups pumpkin puree
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp cloves
  • ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup – 1/2 cup honey or liquid sweetener of choice – Depends how sweet you like it.
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch or arrowroot starch
  • 1/4 cup raisins – optional

Directions

Place everything except the raisins in your blend.  Blend until combined.  Taste and adjust to your preference.  Fold in raisins.

Pour mixture into four ramekins.

Pour boiling water into baking pan. 1 inch of water.  Place your ramekins inside the water bath.

Bake uncovered at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes.

Remove from bath.

Vegan Baked Pumpkin Custard

Serve hot or cold, with a dollop of coconut whipped cream.

 

 

Mung Bean Fritters with a Peach Chutney ( Gluten free, vegan, Sugar free, High Protein)

Mung beans, might sound like something completely new to most people, but they’ve actually been used in Ayurveda diets in India for centuries! Mung beans are considered a cherished food in ancient Indian practices, that’s been used as a medicine since 1 500 B.C.  These little green beans are filled with protein, fiber, antioxidants and phytonutrients, for such a small bean they sure do pack a nutritional punch!  No wonder they are used as medicine.

When I think about Mung beans I think about the one time Carl and I were shopping in an Asian Supermarket somewhere, and without paying much attention to the floor, because who really looks at the floor in a grocer, I stepped on a ripped open bag of mung beans, I remember just really crushing them with my feet, I continued walking like nothing happen just to see Carl looking just as confused as I was, about what he just stepped on.  After a lot of giggling we continued on with our shopping, only to go back to that same section to see a worker scooping up all the mung beans, sealing it, reweighing it and putting it back on the shelf.  Since that day I only buy things that are really sealed and I really, really wash my rice and legumes!  Let that be a lesson to everyone! Unless you like the taste of shoe with your bean! Wash all your legumes like someone might have stepped on it somewhere!

These fritters don’t taste like dirty shoe, they taste amazing, unless of course you’re into the dirty shoe taste! Is quick to prepare after the soak! and is accompanied with the most amazing peach chutney!  The chutney compliments the spices of the fritters amazingly is sugar free, raw and will just make you want to dip everything you can find.  If you love Indian food you will love this recipe.

HEALTH BENEFITS OF MUNG BEANS

  1. Helps lower high blood pressure.
  2. Contains antioxidants that fight cancer development.
  3. Provides a high amount of Protein
  4. Can help prevent type 2 diabetes
  5. Boost Immunity and protect against viral infections
  6. High source of vitamins and minerals.  Mung beans are loaded with folate, magnesium, b vitamins, manganese, zinc and calcium.  That’s a whole lot of goodness in one small little bean.
  7. Helps with weight loss
  8. Can help decrease PMS symptoms.
  9. Easy to digest.

Why you should soak your legumes? when you soak your beans overnight and rinse them well, it makes them easier to digest and takes away the gassy element that beans sometimes gives you.  It also helps remove phytic acid that can cause tooth decay.

MUNG BEAN FRITTERS – 18 fritters

Mung Bean Fritters

Ingredients

  • 1 cup mung beans soaked in enough water to cover it overnight
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled
  • 1 tsp cumin seed
  • 1/2 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/2 tsp fresh grated ginger
  • 1 cup chard or kale leaves
  • 1 medium carrot grated
  • 1 small zucchini, grated
  • 1/4 cup green onions, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro optional
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • oil for frying

Directions

Blend the soaked and rinsed well mung beans with the water, garlic,cumin seed and kale, until it looks like a smooth pancake batter.  Add more water if it needs to be a little less thick.

Stir in the coriander, turmeric, ginger, carrot, zucchini, green onions and cilantro.  Season with salt and pepper.

Heat some coconut oil, in a large skillet over medium high heat and spoon the mixture onto the hot skillet, I try to get them to be all nice and flat by smoothing them out at this stage.  Cook about 3 – 4 at a time.  Cook for 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown on both sides. Continue until the batter is done.

PEACH CHUTNEY

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Ingredients

  • 2 peaches, chopped
  • 1 tsp raisins
  • 1 tsp goji berries – optional, or just add more raisins
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp liquid sweetener
  • 1/4 tsp fresh ginger
  • pinch cinnamon
  • pinch ground cardamom
  • pinch cayenne pepper
  • pinch coriander
  • fresh cilantro

Directions

Place everything in a blender and blend until blended together, but not completely smooth.  Taste and adjust spices.  Serve on top of the fritters.  YUM!

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Electrolyte Almost Instant Lemon Ice Cream

Lemon ice cream sure doesn’t have the same ring to it as lemon sorbet does? Is it just me or does it just sound completely wrong? Lemon Ice cream kind of sounds gross, but lemon sorbet….Man, now that sounds refreshing.  After everything I just said I still decided to go with lemon ice cream in my title, because this is just so much more than a silly sorbet.  Its creamy, filled with flavour and comes together almost instantly, if like me you always have a crazy amount of bananas in your freezer, please tell me I’m not the only one!  I love having frozen banana chunks readily available, who knows when I feel like a cold smoothie,  I  want to chomp on a frozen banana or when I crave some delicious nice cream.   When those days hit, I’m always prepared with all the bananas you will find in my freezer.

I’ve had a couple of days where I’ve suffered from some low blood pressure during this pregnancy.  Its usually when I’ve gone for an unplanned longer than usual walk or forgot that adding salt to your food is a good thing.  In those instances I’ve even been tempted to look twice at an electrolyte drink.  Electrolyte drinks are just filled with so many things that I don’t even like looking at and is just a whole lot of sugar.   When in fact we just need to replenish our body with a little bit of salt, specifically our bodies need the ions in salt. Electrolytes are important, because they are what your cells use to maintain voltages across the cell membranes and to carry electrical impulses to other cells.  When we exercise a lot we usually lose sodium and potassium in our sweat and this little frozen treat is made up of those two vital ingredients.

ELECTROLYTE LEMON ICE CREAM –  serves two or one little greedy goose

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Ingredients

  • 2 large frozen bananas, peeled and chopped before freezing (freeze bananas overnight)
  • 1/2 lemon juiced and zested
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract – optional
  • 1/8 tsp Himalayan pink salt or Celtic salt

Directions

Place all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth and the consistency of soft serve.  Garnish with added lemon zest and serve.  YUM!

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Cookies and Cream Vegan Ice Cream

I’ve been craving delicious sweet treats like crazy since moving to Cape town, maybe its the stress, but I just want all the candy! I know that’s not a good idea for me and I try to stay reasonably far away from sugar as possible or keep it to a minimum, I’m actually insanely good at moderation and not being tempted by things.  I’ve got some serious willpower! I’ve been coming up with healthy treats that you wont even notice has no sugar – to just a bit of sugar in!  This banana ice cream is amazing! creamy, dreamy with that amazing cookies and cream ice cream flavour that so many of us love.  I used an oreo, but feel free to use any cookie you have around.

This is so much better for your waistline and your health than normal ice cream,  a perfect serving size for one or you can share with your loved one.  I shared this with Carl with no problem, if that’s not love!

COOKIES AND CREAM VEGAN ICE CREAMServes 1

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Ingredients

  • 2 bananas, peeled chopped and frozen
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp non dairy milk ( to get things moving, if you have a powerful blender you probably don’t need this)
  • 1 Oreo cookies, extra for garnish

Directions

Place the bananas, vanilla milk and oreo in a blender.  Blend until smooth and the consistency of soft serve.  You might have to stop to scrape the sides down.  Garnish with a crushed oreo.

Serve immediately.

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