Linda McCartney Sausages

???????????????????????????????I have heard lots of other blogs and vegan cookbooks mention that their favorite vegan sausages are Linda McCartney Vegetarian Sausages. I finally got around to trying them tonight and now I can see what everyone is raving about. These sausages are fantastic. They have a very similar texture and taste to real sausages, both on the outside and inside. Both mum and Marco also really liked them as well. ???????????????????????????????

These sausages don’t contain any soy, however they do contain gluten, wheat and sulphar dioxide. Sulphar dioxide often use in processed meats, like salami, sausages and hams.  This is definitely not healthy. I am not sure how much are in these sausages, but considering that I would not eat these regularly. In saying that, as a transitioning food these do hit the spot.

I made these sausages tonight with the leftover Onion Sauce from the Energise Your Life recipe, Spinach Parcels with Onion Sauce. On the side I made Sautéed Broccolini with Potatoes and a Spinach, Alfalfa and Cucumber Salad with Sweet Sesame Dressing.

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Sausages with Onion Sauce (vegan, nut free)

Ingredients:

Linda McCartney Vegetarian Sausages/other brand

grapeseed oil/other oil

Ingredients for Onion Sauce (makes about 1 1/2 cups):

2 tablespoons olive oil

225 g onion, finely chopped

2 tablespoons soy sauce

2 tablespoons flour

400 ml liquid vegetable/vegan chicken liquid stock

100 ml soy milk

sea salt & black pepper to taste

Method:

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1. Heat a griddle pan with oil. The cook sausages according to packet directions. These ones took 15 mins.

2. In the meantime,  heat olive oil  in a pot on medium heat, then add onions. Cook for 5 mins or until soften and browned.

3. Add soy sauce and flour, stir through.

4. Gradually add the stock, stiring constantly. Simmer for 3 mins.

5. Add soy milk and heat through.

6. Season with salt and pepper then serve on top of sausages.

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Sautéed Broccolini with Potatoes (vegan, gluten free, soy free, nut free)

Ingredients:

4 small potatoes

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 garlic cloves

brunch of broccolini

sea salt to taste

Method:

1. Place potatoes in a pot of water. Bring to the boil, then cook on medium heat for 20 mins or until cooked.

2. In the meantime, slice the garlic and cut the broccolini into thirds.

3. Peel the skin off the potatoes, then slice.

4. Heat olive oil in a large pan on medium heat. Add the sliced garlic and sliced potato. Then cook for 5 mins or until the potato begins to brown.

5. Add the broccolini and cook for a further 5 mins or until its tender. Season with salt then serve.

*Serve 3 as a side

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Spinach, Alfalfa and Cucumber Salad with Sweet Sesame Dressing (vegan, gluten free, nut free)

Ingredients:

50 g baby spinach

handful of alfalfa

1 small cucumber

2 tablespoons vegan soy mayo

1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon toasted black/white  sesame seeds

agave to taste

1 teaspoon dijon mustard

sea salt to taste

Method:

1. Slice the cucumber, roughly chop the spinach and combine together with alfalfa.

2. Combine the remaining ingredients in a small bowl.

3. Add the dressing to the salad then serve.

*Serves 3-4 as a side

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Summer Salads for Sally’s 60th

Hi all, as promised, these are the salads that I prepared for Marco mother’s 60th party last night. All of these are from recipes that I have been collecting on Pinterest. In my household we have always had our salads with olive oil, salt and pepper and sometimes balsamic vinegar. So I am not very experienced in salad dressings.

These salads were a big hit at the party. The Roasted Aubergine only lasted about 15 mins till it was all gone. The pasta salad was also popular. All of these salads were quite quick and easy to prepare. The only cooking involved was for the pasta and grilling the eggplant.

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Jamie Oliver’s ‘Best Pasta Salad’

The original recipe for Jamie’s pasta salad is here (gfo, sf, nf)). The only thing I did different was using small vine ripened tomatoes, rather then yellow and red cherry tomatoes. I wasn’t able to get them for a reasonable price. But it didn’t make a difference with flavor, just with color. I especially loved the fresh herbs and zesty lemon flavor. This is a great salad if you have a large group of people and is big enough that everyone gets to have firsts and seconds.

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Roasted Aubergine with Sumac and Tahini Dressing

The recipe for this dish can be found here. This salad was really loved by all the Serbians. The dressing is earthly and zesty, the toppings are nutty and fragrant and the eggplant is soft and creamy. It can be served warm or at room temperature, which is how I served it. The dressing should be chilled and added just before serving. I have never used pomegranate in ???????????????????????????????a salad before. It went really well with the pine nuts. Unfortunately it isn’t in season at the moment in Australia. These were a USA import, so they were expensive and had some bad bits inside, but it was a must have ingredient to complete this dish. I really liked the dressing as well, it was dairy free, but really creamy. I used unhulled tahini, so my dressing is a lot darker then the picture in the original recipe. For the eggplant I removed the bitterness before grilling it. I just added table salt to the slices of eggplant and left them, so that the moister would come out. Then I wiped the moisture off before cooking it. Only thing I would do differently next time is make double the amount.

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Carrot Salad with Olives, Agave and Cumin

The recipe for this salad can be found here. The only things I changed was using agave instead of honey and italian parsley instead of coriander  The birthday girl is not a fan of coriander  but loves italian parsley, so I thought for her party it was better to go with what she likes. This is also a really easy salad to put together. It did take me a while to cut these carrots into tiny matchsticks, but worth it. The dressing was sweet and zesty.

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I was really lucky last night. There were plenty of fresh salads, roasted potatoes and baked bread for me to eat. I definitely didn’t go hungry. Of course they had their lamb on the spit, which they serve at big celebrations, but I didn’t feel like it. Some of the salads they made were Cabbage and Pickles; Cabbage, Beetroot and Carrot; Tomato and Red onion; and Radish and Cucumber. They all had vinegar, oil and salt to season them. There was also a traditional Serbian homemade bread, which is called Pogača. Usually at the beginning of the meal everyone takes an edge and pulls to get their piece. It is quite a heavy, dense bread, but it is nice and airy inside and soft on the outside.

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Marco’s sister made Sally’s birthday cake. This cake isn’t vegan, but it was dairy free. It is also a traditional Serbian recipe. It consists of 3 layers of baked sponge cake, which is only made of ground peanuts and eggs and between the layers are crushed peanuts. On the outside was chocolate and strawberry flavored marzipan. The humidity got to it a bit, but it still looked great and most importantly tasted amazing.

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It was a great night for everyone. The older ones ate, drank and danced all night. Marco, the kids and I ended up watching a movie together to get out of the heat. Most importantly Sally had a great time and it was a birthday to remember.

Summer Protein Smoothies

These are some of the smoothies that I have been making to cool me down and fill me up first thing in the morning in this summer heat. I don’t even feel like I need the coffee after I have one of these. Because of my pyroluria, protein is very important for me to have in the morning to kick start my brain. Since I don’t eat eggs anymore, I try to find other foods that are rich in protein, such as nut, nut butters, nut milks, grains, legumes and avocado. A really quick and easy way to get the protein I need to to put it all in a smoothie, with other fruits and vegetables.

The Protein that I have been using in my smoothies is Vanilla Vital Protein Pea Protein Isolate. It is vegan, 82% Vegetable Protein and is world’s highest source of vegetable protein. It is downloadgluten free, lactose free, GM free. It is also 88% Bio-available Protein, Low-Carbohydrate Level 0.1%, , Low Allergenic, Low in Anti-Nutritional Factors, High Tolerance, 100% Vegetable Origin, Balanced Amino Acid Profile, Not deposited in the body as fat, Rich in valuable Amino Acids for weight control, sports or medicinal purposes; High-digestability (98%), Amino Acid Score 0.9 (norm FAO 1991), High Alkalinity level (ph 7.5).

I have only found a couple of protein products available in Brisbane that are vegan. Such as  Tony Sfeir’s Pea Protein Isolate, Lotus Australia Organic Brown Rice ProteinHemp Foods Australia Hemp Protein.

What protein do you use?

How do you use it (smoothies, baking, etc)?

Do you have any good recipes?

Here are some of the smoothies I have been making over the past weeks. If you are a bit hesitant like I was to add some vegetables to your smoothies, I promise you won’t notice them in these recipes. These are what I call “Marco friendly” smoothies. He always gets nervous when he sees what I am putting in, but he ends up loving them.

Dragon Cherry Protein Smoothie- 1 small Dragon fruit, 1/2 cup cherries 3 dessert spoons vanilla protein, 1 cup almond milk, agave to taste (1-2 serves)

Spinach & Summer Fruit Protein Smoothie– 1 frozen banana, 1 cup frozen nectarine, 1/2 cup frozen grapes, 1/2 cup baby spinach, 2 1/2 cups almond milk, 9 dessert spoons vanilla protein, agave to taste (3 serves)

Green Minty Cooldown Protein Smoothie– 8 grapes, 1/2 lebanese cucumber (peeled), small handful of baby spinach, leaves from 2 sprigs of mint, 1 cups almond milk, 3 dessert spoons vanilla protein, agave to taste (1 serves)

Carrot Cake Protein Smoothie– 1 frozen banana, 1/2 cup grated carrot, 1 teaspoon diced fresh ginger, 2 tablespoon ground pecans/walnuts, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 3/4 cup almond milk, 6 dessert spoons vanilla protein, agave to taste (2 serves)

Dragon Cherry Protein Smoothie

Dragon Cherry Protein Smoothie

Spinach & Summer Fruit Protein Smoothie

Spinach & Summer Fruit Protein Smoothie

Green Minty Cooldown Protiein Smoothie

Green Minty Cooldown Smoothie

Carrot Cake Protein Smoothie

Carrot Cake Protein Smoothie

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