Here are plant-based recipes to try at home and avoid buying anything packaged – enjoy!
Beetroot and walnut hummus
A revelation for people who claim not to like beetroot, or walnuts come to that – is wonderful with crisp crudités, in a sandwich with goat’s cheese, or scooped up with flatbreads.
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
25g stale bread, crusts removed
200g cooked beetroot (not pickled), cut into cubes
1 tablespoon tahini (sesame seed paste)
Put the walnuts on a baking tray and toast in an oven preheated to 180°C/Gas Mark 4 for 5–7 minutes, until fragrant. Leave to cool.
Warm a small frying pan over a medium heat. Add the cumin seeds and dry-fry them, shaking the pan almost constantly, until they start to darken and release their aroma – this should take less than minute, so be careful not to burn them. Crush the seeds with a pestle and mortar or a spice grinder.
Break the bread into small chunks, put in a food processor or blender with the walnuts and blitz until fine. Add the beetroot, tahini, most of the garlic, a good pinch of the cumin, half the lemon juice, a little salt and a good grind of pepper, then blend to a thick paste.
Taste the mixture and adjust it by adding a little more cumin, garlic, lemon, salt and/or pepper, blending again until you are happy with it. Loosen with a dash of oil if you think it needs it. Refrigerate until required but bring back to room temperature to serve.
Every Day – River Cottage
Bill’s Rona oatcakes
This recipe is Bill Cowie’s, island manager of Rona in the Inner Hebrides. Makes about 20.
140g medium oatmeal
140g porridge oats
10 twists of black pepper
½ tsp salt
A small handful of sunflower or other seeds (optional)
75ml extra-virgin olive oil
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas mark 4 and dust two baking trays with flour. Mix all the dry ingredients in a bowl. Pour the oil into a well in the centre, then pour in enough boiling water to bind it into a firm, not sticky, dough. Work quickly. Don’t worry if you over-water a bit – you can remedy the situation by adding more oatmeal.
Form the dough mixture into a ball and leave it to rest for the time it takes to open a bottle and pour a glass of wine. Roll out the dough on a floured surface (dust with flour, too, if it’s sticky) to about 5mm thick.
Cut out discs with a cookie cutter (I use a 6cm one). Place on the baking trays and bake for 20 minutes, then turn and bake for a further five to 10 minutes. Cool on a rack. Store in an airtight container.
NB. If you can’t get oatmeal, try blitzing some oats briefly in a food processor.
Crunchy Asian Slaw
This Asian-inspired coleslaw with seasonal cabbage and juicy apple makes for a healthy main course or a delicious side dish.
200C/180C fan/gas mark 6
Preparation time: 10 minutes
100g cashew nuts
50g pumpkin or sunflower seeds
2 tsp soy sauce + 1 tsp runny honey
2 apples, finely sliced
juice of 1/2 a lemon or lime
1/4 white or red cabbage, finely shredded
2 large carrots, grated
1 tbsp white wine or rice wine vinegar
3 tbsp toasted sesame oil
1 1/2 tsp runny honey or 1tsp sugar
Put the seeds on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for 4 minutes.
Remove from the oven, pour over the soy sauce and honey and return to the oven for a further 2 minutes or until caramelized. Set aside to cool.
Toss the sliced apple in the lemon or lime juice and put in a large bowl with the cabbage and carrot.
Mix the dressing ingredients and add to the salad, tossing everything together.
Sprinkle the cooled nuts and seeds on top and serve immediately.
Recipe: Charlotte Dunne
Photograph: Richard Dunne
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
1 ¾ cups flour (You can use unbleached all-purpose or spelt. If you are gluten-free feel free to use a GF blend or even oat flour)
⅓ cup cane sugar or ¼ cup cane sugar with 2 tablespoons coconut sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
⅓ cup applesauce
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 large overripe bananas, mashed
¼ cup almond milk (or oat milk)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a loaf pan.
- In one medium sized mixing bowl: mash the bananas, add applesauce and vanilla extract, then mix again.
- To this mixture, add the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Mix well, but don’t overmix, just until the flour is combined. Batter will be a little thick and there will be a few lumps, so no worries. If the mixture seems a little too thick, add a bit more milk, especially if using heavier flours such as whole wheat or spelt.
- Pour batter into the loaf pan and bake for about 50 minutes.
- Insert toothpick in bread to test if it’s done. If it comes out clean it means your bread is ready!
- Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes before slicing.
From Earth Day www.earthday.org/eat-plant-based-one-meal-for-a-week/