I lost my blogging mojo a little over the last few weeks. Like everyone, I was stupidly busy in the run up to Christmas. On top of the normal end of year craziness I was helping a friend move house. This meant my time was a bit squeezed and I honestly couldn’t be bothered cooking. I’ve been eating a lot of fruit from the garden and while that’s delicious, it doesn’t make for a very exciting blog post.
The mojo is back however, sparked by inspiration from two bloggers. The first was Johanna over at Green Gourmet Giraffe who dropped by last week with some sourdough starter for me. I’ve been making great bread with it, using a slightly modified version of the no-knead recipe.
The second was Vaishali over at Holy Cow! She’d written a post early in December for Dhal Tadka that caught my eye, so I bookmarked it for future reference.
One led to the other. I had some leftover dough from bread making so I decided to make some flatbread. I just rolled the dough thinly and slapped it onto a frying pan to cook for a couple of minutes on each side. I then held the bread in tongs over the gas flame to puff it up and char it slightly. The flatbread obviously needed something to go with it…dhal seemed like an excellent choice.
Of course I tinkered, partly out of necessity because I didn’t have the ingredients, partly because I am an inveterate tinkerer with recipes, and partly to add more punch to the dhal. I didn’t have some of the types of dhal Vaishali used so I went with what I had, channa, split urad and mung. I also made more of the tadka spice mix, upping the quantities by half because I love garlic and chilli. I left out the sugar.
If you have a pressure cooker the dhal can be ready in 20 minutes.
Good, simple, comforting and delicious food.
author: holycowvegan.net tweaked by quincesandkale
recipe type: vegan
- ½ cup channa dhal
- ½ cup mung dhal
- ½ cup split urad dhal
- ½ tsp ground turmeric
- enough water to cover by 2 cm.
- 1.5 tbsp coconut oil
- 1.5 tsp brown mustard seeds
- 3 dried chillies (I removed the seeds)
- 6 cloves of garlic
- 2 medium tomatoes
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- salt to taste
- fresh coriander
- Wash the dhal, cover with water, add the turmeric and cook until tender.
- Heat the coconut oil and fry the mustard seeds with the chillies
- When the seeds start to pop, add the garlic and fry until fragrant and golden, but NOT burnt.
- Add the chopped tomato and cook down slightly.
- Stir the oil spice mix into the dhal mix and season with salt and lemon juice to taste.
- Garnish with fresh coriander.
I have always been terrible at making pancakes.
I have never really understood why, but it has always been so, both pre and post vegan. I produce sad, gluggy things that barely resemble the pancakes I remember. I like them light and fluffy.
I’ve finally worked out that it might be the flour I was using. I bake bread fairly often and I always have specialist high protein bread flour in the cupboard. I’d been using this for the pancakes and it isn’t really right. They need a softer, lower protein flour, so I recently made pancakes with some regular supermarket flour.
Not surprisingly they didn’t turn out sad at all, but light and fluffy, so I decided they deserved to be published. I mean look at them.They are gorgeous. If I sound a bit chuffed about them…that’s because I am.
I decided to take these in a Mexican direction so I topped them with some vegan butter and a salsa made from tomatoes, onion, coriander and avocado.
They also work as sweet pancakes, I ate the second lot with vegan butter and maple syrup.
I have finally conquered the pancake! 🙂
corn pancakes with salsa
recipe type: Breakfast
- 1 cup plain flour
- 2½ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 egg replacement (I used Orgran, but you could use flax seed emulsion or any other)
- ½ cup almond or soy milk. You need enough to make a thick spoonable batter.You may need a bit more but don't make them too runny.
- ¾ cup corn kernels (I used frozen, but fresh would be good)
- 6 cherry tomatoes diced
- ¼ avocado diced
- 1 tsp finely diced onion
- a pinch of salt
- 1 tbs chopped coriander
- Mix the flour, baking powder and salt together in a large bowl.
- Mix the egg replacement and non dairy milk together and add to the flour mix.
- Stir until well combined.
- Fold in the corn kernels.
- Heat a heavy pan over medium heat and melt a mix of oil and vegan butter until it sizzles.
- Add scoops of batter to the pan, the pancakes should be about 3-4 inches across.
- Cook for 2-3 minutes until small bubbles appear in the top and start to burst, and the edges start to dry out a bit.
- Flip and cook for another 2 minutes on the other side.
- Mix the salsa ingredients together.
- Serve the pancakes with some vegan butter and the salsa.
I love a good pizza, but making it at home is always a bit of a gamble. Domestic ovens can never be relied upon to give the same crispy base that you get from a scorchingly hot commercial pizza oven. I’ve tried many things in search of pizza perfection, ranging from special perforated pizza trays to pizza stones.
Pizza stones work, but only if you preheat them for AGES until they are incredibly hot. This uses an enormous amount of energy which is fine if you are making a heap of them, but not so good if you are making just one.
I usually have a batch of no-knead dough on the go a couple of times a week and often I steal a bit for a pizza. This morning I’d run out of bread for breakfast and so I grabbed a piece and made a flatbread in a heavy frying pan. Apart from being delicious, guess what? The base was super crispy and of course I immediately thought of pizza.
For lunch I grabbed another bit (that loaf of bread is getting smaller!) and made a pizza.
This time I threw the dough base into a dry frying pan for a few minutes until it was lightly spotted and starting to crisp up on the bottom. I then removed the base and added the toppings, just some simple oven roasted tomatoes, a very light dusting of Cheezly mozzarella and some fresh basil and put it into the oven as normal. Pre-cooking the base like this has the added advantage of making the base rigid and thus easy to wrangle into the oven.
And it worked. Perfect. Crispy. Delicious.