Homemade & FreeFrom Energy ‘Flapjacks’ (or ‘Bites’!) [Vegan & Gluten Free]

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 8-16
Prep & Cooking Time: 35-40mins
Cooling Time: 20mins

Notes: This recipe contains: B-Vitamins, Vitamin E, carbohydrates, protein, fibre, calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, omega 3 & 6, phosphorus, zinc and per serving is low in salt and has a moderate quantity of added, sugar and fat!

We simply love oats! From a simple and tasty bowl of porridge to some delicious muffins or slightly more indulgent crumbles or flapjacks! With all of this cooler weather that has suddenly rolled in, we are definitely craving fuel, an oaty-based snack…which got us thinking; a while ago we tried a leading plant-based bar which had ‘peanut flour’- gorgeous to say the least but at 90p a bar you can forget it!

So last week we decided to prepare an ‘almost’ flapjack with two great food loves of ours (peanut butter and oats!). So, ‘almost’ because the texture is slightly spongy and not crispy and/or oily, simply because it does not contain a tonne of typical golden syrup and butter, in addition to the fact that ground peanuts and peanut butter do not make it very authentic either! 

As the bars are energy packed, we’d advise to halve them into ‘bites’ and enjoy them as a healthy snack on the go, for those colder winter days to come; whether you’re out Christmas shopping or enjoying a long wintery walk in the snow! However, enjoy them as an occasional bar and save yourself a few pennies!

Overall we were happy with the result! There is certainly a huge margin for adapting these lovelies- let the sky be your limit! In terms of alterations, there isn’t many. We have advised using a little more milk, a little less flax and that the dried cranberries are optional, but you could reduce the quantity and just keep a few for added texture! If you want to help reduce the fat, try using less peanut butter or adapting the recipe with almonds instead. We definitely recommend toasting the peanuts, or any nuts that you use before grinding them (we forgot to!); it’ll really help bring out their lovely nuttiness! 

We think that these bars were just sweet enough, but it you have a ‘sweeter tooth’ than us you could perhaps try:

  • using a sweetened protein powder or DF milk. 
  • adding some ripe and mashed banana (or your favourite fruit!). 
  • omitting some of the cranberries and/or dates for more fruit syrup or try using some fresh fruit juices (apple, pineapple etc.) instead! Of course you could always try omitting the syrup altogether and just use ripe bananas- they always make everything really (naturally) sweet!

Happy GF, DF and refined sugar free baking everyone! 🙂

 

Ingredients:

++++++++7                Pitted Dates (60g)
++++++++55g            Unsalted Peanuts (toasted)
++++++++2 tsp          Virgin Coconut Oil (20g)
++++++++¼ Cup       Natural Peanut Butter (80g)
++++++++30g           Soya Isolate Powder (unsweetened)
++++++++1¼ cup      Almond Milk (unsweetened & fortified)
++++++++2 cups       Porridge Oats (GF if required) (180g)
++++++++1½ Tbsp    Ground Flax Seed (30g)
++++++++1-2             Pinches Table Salt
++++++++1 tsp          Ground Cinnamon (3g)
++++++++¼ Cup       Fruit Sweetener (Your favourite: agave, carob, date, etc!) (55g)
++++++++1/3 cup     Dried Cranberries (Naturally sweetened)*Optional (50g)

 

Nutrition:

 

Directions:

1. Place the dates into a bowl. Pour in some freshly boiled water, enough to cover them. Cover the bowl with a large plate. Allow to soak for 8-10 mins.

 

2. In the meantime, heat a small, non-stick frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add the peanuts. Dry-fry until lightly toasted. Remove from the heat. Allow to cool slightly. Transfer into a food processor. Pulse until a ‘fine-ish’ flour is achieved. Transfer the ground peanuts into a large mixing bowl. Tip: Fancy some added texture? Save some of the nuts, roughly chop and then add them into the raw flapjack mixture later on!

 

3. Remove the dates from the water with a slotted spoon. Transfer them into the food processor with 6-8 tbsp of its ‘soaking’ water. Pulse until mostly smooth. Add the coconut oil and peanut butter. Pulse until smooth and combined.

 

4. Heat the oven to 180°C/350°F. Grease (or line with a liner) an 8X8″ baking tin.

 

5. Place the protein powder into a shaker bottle (or just use a large bowl if you do not own one). Add the milk. Shake (or whisk if applicable) until all of the powder has dissolved.

 

6.  …Time to work those biceps! 🙂

NB: Add the milk and the date mixture into the ‘well’ at the same time and mix together. Do not mix the milk and the date mixture separately (as we have shown here); it’s easier to do it all in one simultaneous step…but the choice is yours! 🙂

  • Place the oats, ground flaxseed, salt and cinnamon into the same bowl as the ground peanuts. Stir until thoroughly combined.
  • Make a well in the centre of the oaty mixture.
  • Pour the milk and date mixture into the ‘well’.
  • Using a silicone spatula or large spoon mix until thoroughly combined.
  • Add the dried cranberries and/or chopped pieces of peanuts (if applicable). Stir through. Tip: The mixture will be a bit ‘tacky’, but this is OK!

 

7. Place the mixture into the greased tin. Use the back of your spatula or a piece of parchment paper to help press it evenly down into the tin, making it as flat and as even as possible.

 

8. Place the tin onto the middle oven shelf. Bake for about 16-19 mins or until just lightly browned and firm to touch. Remove and allow the mixture to cool in the tin for 20 mins before slicing (that’s just enough time to make and have a perfectly cooled cup of tea!).

Tip: Loosen the sides of the baked mixture with a dinner or palate knife before slicing. Also slice the mixture into rectangles/’bars’ and then remove and allow them to cool on a cooling rack before slicing into smaller ‘bites/squares’.

We baked ours for 18 mins in a fan-assisted oven.

Our ‘bites’ ready for the freezer!

Enjoy!

Advertisements

Meatless Monday: Marinated Tofu & Veggie Skewers W/ a Peanut Satay [Vegan & Gluten Free]

Healthy Recipes, Meatless Monday

Serves: 5
Prep: Variable & dependant upon the length of your marination! (See Below)
Cooking: 30-35 mins
Type: Main Meal
Tools: Chopping boards(s), sharp knife, mixing bowls, measuring jug, casserole dish, wooden or metal skewers & soaking dish, baking trays, parchment paper, manual juicer, whisk, frying pan, frying spatula, bowl

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-Vitamins, Vitamins C, K & E,  protein, fibre, calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, zinc and per serving has a moderate quantity of added sugar, fat and salt!

Hi everyone! How was your weekend? Survive the downpours?! It was so blustery yesterday- I felt a bit like Mary Poppins! Broken umbrellas, fuzzy scarves and bare trees, yep, winter is most definitely on the cards!

We’re still a little taken back by this weekend; it’s held so many terrible global events. How society got this position and how it will redeem itself still remains to be seen. On some level, everyone has a part to play, however small and it’s surprising how many of us don’t. Showing humanity and compassion doesn’t cost us anything, yet people are still consumed with exploiting indifferences and pursuing armed conflict. We should all take a moment and wish for a world where normality does not involve the dehumanization of society. 

On a happier note, this Monday we have prepared a great meatless alternative.

Marinated tofu and vegetables (inclusive of brussels sprouts!) skewers, served alongside some delicious, creamy and moreish peanut satay! The marinated tofu and veggies were delicious; although our opinion might be a tad biased as we love tofu! If you cannot wait until Christmas for your next batch of roasted sprouts, then we thoroughly recommend giving our variation a try! The sprouts really stole the show; beautifully roasted as they just melt in your mouth. 🙂

This recipe is quite versatile; use your favourite fresh or frozen veggies and/or adjust the marinade to your own personal preferences. If you are short on time, you can complete this meal in about 45-60 mins (45 mins if you marinade your tofu overnight)! Sixty minutes if you release your inner maestro and press the tofu for 20 mins, marinade the tofu and veggies for 15-20 mins, thread only the tofu*, roast everything for about 30 mins and then sit back and enjoy! However, the longer you allow for marinating, the better the overall flavour will be.

*You can also save time by not skewering and threading every piece of tofu and veggie, just skewer the tofu and roast the veggies alongside! Alternatively, place everything onto two baking trays and then bake the tofu and roast the veggies! We hope that you enjoy it!

Happy cooking everyone and if you haven’t already, please consider pledging your support towards Hugh’s War on Waste!  When we pledged nearly two weeks ago, he had about 38K worth of signatures; there is now over 250K pledges! 🙂 #uglyvegetables #loveallthevegetables #wastenot

 

 

Ingredients

+++++++++++++++++—————————Skewers———————————————–
+++++++++++++++++800g       Firm Tofu (=2 tetra paks)
+++++++++++++++++600g       Frozen Brussels Sprouts, defrosted or Fresh!
+++++++++++++++++560g        Bell Peppers (2 Red, 2 Yellow and 1 Green Bell Pepper)
+++++++++++++++++240g        Red Onion
+++++++++++++++++2 tbsp      Olive oil
+++++++++++++++++3½ tsp     Garlic Infused Oil
+++++++++++++++++6 tbsp      Low-salt Soya Sauce (or Tamari sauce as a GF option)
+++++++++++++++++3 tbsp      Maple Syrup
+++++++++++++++++½ tsp        Asafoetida (or onion powder)
+++++++++++++++++1 ½ tsp      Ground Ginger
+++++++++++++++++3 tbsp       Sesame Oil
+++++++++++++++++3 tsbp       Walnut Oil
+++++++++++++++++2 tbsp       Rice Vinegar

+++++++++++++++++—————————Peanut Satay——————————————
+++++++++++++++++50g           Root ginger
+++++++++++++++++100g         Spring onion
+++++++++++++++++1                 Lime
+++++++++++++++++                  Low-Fat Cooking Oil
+++++++++++++++++80g           Natural Peanut Butter (smooth)
+++++++++++++++++1-2 tsp      Maple Syrup
+++++++++++++++++¼ tsp        Red chilli flakes
+++++++++++++++++¼ cup       Boiling Water
+++++++++++++++++2/3 cup    Soya Yoghurt (unsweetened or sweetened)

 

Directions

Drain and then press the tofu between two heavy plates or chopping boards for about 20-30 minutes to express any excess water.

 

In the meantime prepare the veggies and tofu!

1. Defrost the brussels sprouts in a microwave (if applicable). If you’re using fresh sprouts, just make sure to give them a thorough wash first!

2. Wash, remove the stem and core and then chop the bell peppers into 1 inch cubes (or larger pieces if preferred). Peel and quarter the red onion and then separate the layers.

3. Place the brussels sprouts, bell peppers and onion into a large mixing bowl.

4. Add 2 tbsp olive oil, ½ tsp garlic oil, 3 tbsp soya sauce, 1 tsp maple syrup, pinch of asafoetida (or onion powder) and ½ tsp of ground ginger. Toss to coat and combine. Cover with kitchen film and refrigerate for same duration as the tofu. Tip: If you are marinating your tofu overnight, it’s best to prepare the veggies the following day!

 

 

1. Drain off any excess water from the tofu and pat it dry with some kitchen towel.

2. Place the tofu onto a chopping board. Chop each block into about twenty, 1 inch pieces.

3. Prepare the tofu marinade. In a small bowl or measuring jug, add 3 tsp garlic infused oil, 3 tbsp soya (or Tamari) sauce, 1½ tbsp maple syrup, ½ tsp asafoetida (or onion powder), 1 tsp ground ginger, 3 tbsp sesame oil, 3 tbsp walnut oil and 2 tbsp rice vinegar. Whisk until combined.

4. Get a large dish or mixing bowl (we used a casserole dish!). Add the tofu. Pour over the marinade. Gently toss to coat. Cover with kitchen film. Place the tofu into the refrigerator. Allow it to marinate for as long as possible (ours marinated for 4hrs). Tip: The longer you can allow your tofu to marinate, the better the flavour will be!

 

 

  • If you do not own metal kitchen skewers, place some wooden ones into a dish of cold water about twenty or thirty minutes before you want to prepare your tofu/veggie skewers; this will prevent them from burning.
  • Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F. Line two baking trays with some parchment paper. Prepare your skewers anyway you desire! Tip: If you don’t have much time, do not worry about making them artistic, just thread all of the tofu and then place the veggies next to the prepared skewers on the baking trays or as previously mentioned, just place everything over the two trays instead.
  • Place the trays onto the middle and top shelves. Bake for 30-35 mins or until lightly browned and slightly crispy around the edges; turning once. Remove. Tip: It might be a good idea to swap the trays around half way; move the top tray to the middle shelf and vice versa.

 

Whilst the skewers are baking…
…cook some brown basmati rice (about 60g/person) according to the packet instructions.

 

In the meantime prepare the satay!

  • Gather your ingredients!
  • Wash peel and grate the ginger. Wash, trim the ends and finely slice the spring onion. Juice ½ of the lime.
  • Heat a small, non-stick frying pan over a medium heat. Spray it with some low-fat cooking oil. Add the ginger and spring onion. Gently fry for 1-2 mins or until softened. Add the red chilli flakes. Stir to combine.
  • Remove the frying pan from the heat.

 

Boil ¼ cup water in a kettle.

  •  Place the lime juice, peanut butter and 1-2 tsp maple syrup into a measuring jug.
  • Add 2 tbsp of  boiled water to help melt the peanut butter. Whisk until combined and creamy.
  • Add the soya yoghurt.
  • Whisk to thoroughly combine. Add more liquid if a thinner sauce is desired.
  • Add half the quantity of the cooked ginger mixture into the satay sauce. Whisk to combine.
  • Add the remaining ginger mixture into the rice. Mix with a fork. Taste and season it as necessary.

 

 

Serve warm. Spoon some rice onto a serving plate.Top with the skewers and serve alongside the satay and a wedge of lime (if desired).

Enjoy!…

 

…Especially the leftovers!  🙂 ❤

 

 

Refrigerate any leftover tofu or veggies in an air-tight and resealable container; reheat and consume with 3-4 days. Refrigerate any leftover satay in a separate, an air-right and resealable container; consume within 3-5 days or refer to yoghurt’s use-by date.

 

Cacao, Avocado & Nut Butter Pudding w/ a ‘Caramel’ Topping (and some ‘Free Sugars’ Talk!)

Healthy Recipes

Pudding Serves: 4
Prep: 30 mins
Chilling Time: 20-180 mins (*Depending on how cold you like your pudding!)
‘Caramel’ Serves: a minimum of 12 (2 tsp/serving based on 12 servings)
Type: Dessert
Tools: Chopping board, sharp knife, small pot, food processor, silicone spatula, resealable container(s) and/or serving dishes

Notes: This recipe contains: B-Vitamins, Vitamins E, carbohydrates, protein, calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium, zinc, is low in salt and (per serving) has a moderate amount of sugars and fats!

There is something nostalgic about eating pudding…or maybe not?! I did grow up in North America after all, so it does explain some (but not all!) of my food choices. #recoveringpeanutbutteraddict  #exkoolaidkid  #cheddarisntreallyorange #whatdidijusteat !!!

We made this recipe last week because sometimes we all just crave something ‘sweet’, but it’s just about being responsible. Moderation and fibre are key, but so is informing yourself regarding food labels, portion sizes, healthy foods and enabling yourself to follow a healthy lifestyle (more days than none)… such as avoiding excessive amounts of ‘free sugars’* and kick starting a realistic exercise regime. Click here for some other ideas and healthy eating advice.

Luckily I kicked the ‘what’s for dessert’ phase a while ago! In about a week’s time I will have resided in the UK for sixteen years; mostly spent in London.This cultural journey has contributed to my ever-changing palate/sweet tooth, as did being exposed to various ailments, experimenting with loads of foods and recipes and of course pursuing a degree in human nutrition.

Anyways, switching this conversation back to the recipe….

This pudding goes down all too well, so I’m really glad that we only made a small portion! Unlike ‘old school instant puddings’, there is no ‘chill/setting’ time; you can eat this pudding faster than you can say “asafoetida”! Personally we prefer this type of dessert cold; we refrigerated ours for three hours before serving, but you could also try popping it in the fridge or freezer for 30 mins instead.

The elements are fab! The avocado and peanut butter give this pudding a great texture (without having to add dairy products, emulsifiers, gelling agents or oils) and more importantly for me- integrity. The problem with some plant-based desserts is that the texture is questionable and they can fall apart all too easily… which is why some recipes love using coconut oil or vegetable-based shortenings (were not a big fan of either).  

The ‘caramel’ topping makes eight heaped tablespoons, so you have plenty for the foreseeable future (next time we won’t be making so much)! Just stir a little into your pudding once its cooled or just before serving- it’s delicious and very rich! We added one heaped teaspoon/each into our desserts. It’s currently in our fridge and I am hoping it keeps for 2-3 wks (minimum) but we’ll let you know how we get on! Oh, if you want a thinner consistency, add add more water when you purée the dates. 

We hope that you enjoy this gem as much as we did (in moderation of course)!  

 

Ingredients

NB: Try using your favourite unsweetened DF milk if preferred.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++

Nutritional Info

C’mon, were not going to give you a dessert recipe like this without a disclaimer- it’s all about helping you to make informed choices about your health!!

NB: 3.8g of ‘free sugars’*/serving.

NB: 0.2g of ‘free sugars’*/serving.

 

*Free Sugars:
A few months ago The Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) released a report in the UK on Carbohydrates where they gave new recommendations in line with WHO that ‘free sugar’ intake should account for no more than 5% of daily energy intake.

 

The SACN official definition of ‘free sugars’ stated that:

‘Free sugars’ comprises all monosaccharides* and disaccharides* added to foods by the manufacturer, cook or consumer, plus sugars naturally present in honey, syrups and unsweetened fruit juices. Under this definition lactose (the sugar in milk) when naturally present in milk and milk products and the sugars contained within the cellular structure of foods (particularly fruits and vegetables) are excluded.

*Monosaccharides are single sugar units (glucose and fructose) and disaccharides are two single units joined together ( sucrose).

 

…But we’re sure most of you’re wondering what does 5 % of ‘free sugars’ actually mean?

 

…So how does your ‘free sugar’ intake currently weigh up?? 

 

If you have a sweet tooth and/or eat a lot of processed or packaged foods (e.g. fruit drinks, soups and cereals), it can quickly add up!

‘Free sugars’ can be added into our foods by manufacturers and unfortunately at the moment, the UK’s food labels do not account for ‘free sugars’ (just total sugars), making it hard for anyone to distinguish between the ‘natural occurring sugars’ from those that have been added.

Free sugars include but are not limited to: unsweetened fruit juice, coconut or table sugars, hydrolysed starch, molasses or treacle, honey, or any sort of syrup that contains sugar in its food label, e.g. agave syrup/nectar, corn syrup, rice malt syrup, natural date syrup, maple syrup etc. Sugars naturally occurring in fruit, vegetables, grains, cereals or dairy products (lactose!) do not count.

 

…Until things change some things you could try include:
  • Familiarising yourself with the ‘names of sugar’ and limiting them on a daily basis, e.g. sucrose, maltose, glucose syrup etc. 

***Check out one of our previous sugar posts for info on names of ‘sugars’ found in everyday foods.

  • Looking at food labels more frequently. Remember that ingredients are listed in order of quantity, e.g. having sugar listed as the first, second or third ingredient in a list of ten ingredients shows that it will make a bigger proportion of the food item in question.
  • Comparing similar food products for sugar info. Your favourite brand might not all of the information you are looking for, but a similar product might give a full nutritional breakdown; you can use this for an educated guess.
  • Cooking from scratch. Homemade meals always taste better and this will allow yourself to have full control over what goes into them; no one really wants or needs 10g of sugar and 2.7g of salt /serving in their pasta sauce!
  • Swapping sugary drinks (including juices) for plain water, particularly if you drink a lot of them. NB: Some tins of soda can contain at much as 52 grams of sugar!
  • Opt for whole fruits instead of fruit juices/smoothies; that way our bodies benefit from its fibre and the fruit sugars are absorbed more slowly into our bodies.

That’s enough talking for now… on with the recipe!

NB: The pudding might be a little ‘tart’ at first, but once you add the caramel its absolutely perfect!  Also, try using a vanilla paste (or a pure vanilla extract) if you have access to it because it really amps up the flavour in the ‘caramel’!

 

Directions

1. Destone the dates. Place them into a small pot with 200ml of cold water. Cover with a lid. Bring to a boil and then remove from the heat. Allow them to soak for 20 mins.

2. In the meantime, chop the avocado into two halves; peel and destone. Place 12g cacao powder, the avocado, 50g peanut butter, 16g agave syrup,1.5 tsp of vanilla paste and 170ml almond milk into a food processor. Pulse until smooth, creamy and thoroughly combined. Tip: Use a spatula to scrape the pudding off the sides of the food processor back into the base as you go.

3. Transfer the mixture into a resealable and air tight container (or some ramekins/small serving dishes) and refrigerate it in the coldest part of your fridge for about 3 hrs or until you’re ready to partake in an ultimate dairy free chocolate experience!

4. Meanwhile, add a pinch of cinnamon and sea salt and 1/4 tsp vanilla paste into the pot with the date mixture. Blend with a stick blender until smooth and creamy. If you do not have a stick blender, quickly wash your food processor and transfer the date mixture into it. Add the cinnamon, sea salt and vanilla paste. Blend until smooth; adding extra water if a thinner consistency is preferred. Transfer the ‘caramel’ into a clean, air tight and resealable container. Keep refrigerated until you serve the pudding.

5. Serve the pudding in a small dish. Add and stir through a little of the ‘caramel’. Top with some fresh/whole fruits (banana or berries would work well), nuts or a dollop of plain/unsweetened almond-based yoghurt!

Enjoy!

 

We added a bunch of fresh fruit after I took some pictures. NB: This glass represents 2 servings.

If preferred…

  • Try using almond or hazelnut butter instead of PB (it will help to reduce the s/fat content)!
  • It would also be fun to experiment with fruits  or maybe even cooked vegetables (instead of nuts!); try adding banana, strawberries, or some purred sweet potato or pumpkin into the pudding mixture for a unique flavour experience!
  • Omit the agave and just use the ‘caramel’ to sweeten the pudding instead!
  • Try transferring this pudding mixture into a small/medium-sized popsicle mold for a great homemade, vegan popsicle experience; freeze overnight. #latesummerdessert 

 

Resources:

Slow Cooker Pad Thai Soup W/Tofu (V,GF)

Healthy Recipes

Serves: 6
Prep duration: 60 minutes
Cooking Time: 7-8 hours

Notes: This recipe contains: Vitamin A, B-vitamins, Vitamin C, K & E, protein, fibre, calcium, iron, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, has minimal added sugars and is relatively low in salt* and saturated fats*! (*NB:orange traffic light ratings). 

I think the main thing that enticed us to prepare this recipe (well, me especially) was the peanut butter. Authentic pad Thai soups and/or noodle dishes normally have vegetables, noodles, poultry, shellfish and/or eggs with some nuts….but when your vegan, what are you left with?! Lovely noodles, vegetables and peanuts… so we took the peanut aspect and ran with it!

We’re both peanut butter lovers, me probably more so, but only because I grew up in North America…but my palate and awareness has evolved a millionfold since childhood; no more   hydrogenated oils or glucose-fructose, corn syrups! I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, peanut butter is a love affair most people have for life…so we all just have to be smart about it. Nut butters (in their natural form) can be quite nutritious…but also high in calories and fat (some more than others)- so please consume them within moderation as part of a healthy diet!

As for the recipe, it’s quite versatile and can be made on the ‘cheap’! For this reason we have excluded tamarind paste (a typical ingredient found in this type of recipe); this item isn’t necessarily expensive (especially when bought in its ‘pulp’ form) but for those that do not attempt a lot of ethnic cooking, it may be a waste of money… it does provide a lovely depth of flavour though, if you do decide to treat yourself! Check out our butternut squash curry; we show you how to prepare tamarind pulp (but this is also a great recipe)!

We have also omitted the use of fish sauce and chicken stock for obvious reasons…and soya sauce; just trying to keep the salt content down! Some recipes request using fried noodles- but we thought we’d give that a miss! Using chilli, lime, ginger and the peanut butter provided a lovely vegan/Thai alternative. Feel free to add more veggies- this soup only offers approx. 1.5 servings (fruit/vegetables)/serving, towards your 5-A-Day; considerably less than our other recipes!

We hope you enjoy it!

 

The tofu is off  being ‘pressed’… and we decided not to use the mirin.

 

Ingredients:

 

Directions:
Step One

Open and drain the tofu. Place it between two heavy chopping boards for approximately 15-20 minutes to remove any excess water.

 

 

Heat the oven to 200°C/400°F. Line a baking tray with a silicone mat or parchment paper.

We sprayed the mat with a little low-fat cooking oil.

 

 

In the meantime, wash, peel and grate the ginger. Wash, trim the ends and finely slice the spring onion. Peel and dice the shallot and garlic.

 

 

Wash, peel, trim the ends and chop the carrot into matchstick pieces. Wash and zest the lime.

 

 

 Drain and chop the tofu into cubes. Place them on the baking tray. Spray them with a little low-fat cooking oil. Place it into the oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden. Remove.

Through the magic of time….we give you baked tofu! 🙂

 

 

In the meantime, wash, dry and slices the mushrooms…

 

 

…. and juice the lime.

 

 

Heat a non-stick frying pan over a medium-low heat. Spray it with some low-fat cooking oil.

 

 

Add the ginger, spring onion, garlic and shallot. Gently fry for 1-2 minutes or until softened.

 

 

Remove from the heat.

 

 

Transfer the tofu into the slow cooker.

 

 

Add the ginger, spring onion, garlic and shallot and mushrooms…

Opps! We forgot to add the mushrooms… until about 10 minutes after it started cooking! Add them now!

 

 

…the carrot, lime zest and juice, sugar, chilli flakes and peanut butter…

We added our mange tout at this stage…but do not recommend it. Add it right before serving to help keep its vibrant colour!

 

 

…followed by the stock and boiling water. Stir together.

 

 

Cover with the lid. Cook on low heat setting for 7-8 hours.

 

 

This soup is great to make overnight or first thing in the morning (for those that have time)!

Whether you decide to make this soup overnight or before you go off to work, there will be minimal work required to get this dish on your table.

 

Step Two

Cook some pasta according to the packet instructions (this is only going to take 10-14 minutes!). Drain.

In the meantime, place the soup into a large, non-stick saucepan (if applicable) and gently reheat over a medium-low heat; add the mange tout. Taste and season it as desired; we added a little more lime juice. Add the cooked pasta to the soup just before serving; stir together and serve.

Meanwhile, wash and chop some fresh coriander and chop some peanuts (if desired).

 NB: We snapped our spaghetti into halves before cooking. Once you turn the slow cooker off, your food can remain a good temperature for at least 30 minutes afterwards; just don’t remove the lid.

 

Ladle into a large serving bowl. Garnish with fresh coriander and chopped peanuts (if desired) and serve.

See, don’t make the same mistake we made with the mange tout- it looks so washed out! NB: This picture shows one serving (based on six servings). One serving provides approximately: 208kcal, 11g Protein, 9g Fat, 1.6g S/fat, 3.8g Fibre, 0.5g Salt, 383mg Calcium, 2.2mg Iron & 16mg of Vitamin C! To help reduce the fat content, use half as much tofu..and maybe a little less peanut butter!

 

Enjoy!

 

 Refrigerate any leftovers in a resealable container; reheat and consume within 3-4 days.

 

If preferred…

  • Our bag of mange tout was only £1, but please feel free to use bean sprouts, shredded kale, or some frozen/defrosted spinach, green beans, bell peppers, green peas, or sweetcorn instead…or in addition (let it provide 3 of your 5-A-Day)!
  • Swap the shallot for white onion.
  • If you’re short on time, you can try adding the tofu to the slow cooker ‘unbaked’…but we’re not too sure of what the end product will be like; we’ve never tried it. If anyone has, please feel free to fill in the blanks!
  • If being GF isn’t a concern, try using wholemeal pasta; alternatively use soba noodles or some rice noodles or vermicelli instead.