Tag Archive for dessert

brownies for a birthday

brownies with raspberries and coconut yoghurt

Sometimes people respond with disbelief when you mention delicious vegan food. This seems even more so when it comes to cakes. I know people who think that “delicious vegan cake” is an oxymoron. More fool them.

I was at my sister’s birthday party recently. At family gatherings we all bring part of the meal and there are always plenty of vegan options, except for the cake. So this time I offered to bring the birthday cake, as usually I don’t get to eat any.

I made brownies that were slightly adapted from the recipe at Oh She Glows. I used more walnuts and chocolate chips and slightly more raising agent. One reason I think they were so delicious because I didn’t stint on the quality of the chocolate. I used 70% couverture chocolate and some top-notch cocoa, both from Monsieur Truffe in East Brunswick. They were not overly sweet, with a fantastic, slightly bitter, dark chocolate flavour.


They were a huge hit with everyone. Crispy on the outside, chewy in the middle, studded with plenty of walnuts and served with raspberries and coconut yoghurt. And some birthday candles. 🙂


prep time
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recipe type: Dessert
cuisine: vegan
serves: 16
  • 1½ tbsp ground flax + 3 tbsp water mixed together in a small bowl
  • ¾ cup plain flour
  • 1½ cups almond meal
  • ½ cup cocoa powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 5 tbs non-dairy butter (I used Half Pint Vegan Dairy Butter Me Up)
  • 1 cup dark chocolate pieces
  • 1¼ cup caster sugar
  • 5 tbsp non dairy milk (I used almond)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ¾ cup roughly chopped walnuts
  1. Preheat oven to 170C.
  2. Line a 20 cm square tin with baking paper and lightly grease.
  3. In a large bowl, mix together the dry ingredients (flour, almond meal, cocoa, salt, bicarb).
  4. Melt ½ cup of the chocolate and the butter in a microwave or over a saucepan of hot water.
  5. Add in flax mixture, sugar, vanilla, and almond milk and mix well.
  6. Pour the wet mixture over dry mixture and stir to combine.
  7. Now fold in the walnuts and remaining ½ cup chocolate chips and stir. It is a fairly stiff mix.
  8. Scoop the mix into the cake tin and smooth down flat.
  9. Bake for 35 minutes.
  10. Allow brownies to cool in pan for about 1.5 hours. Be patient!
  11. Remove carefully from pan onto a cooling rack.
  12. Allow to cool completely before slicing.


coconut sticky rice with mango

mango with sticky rice

Mangoes are so cheap at the moment.

I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with mangoes. I love them green in a salad, I like them when they are a bit softer, not too ripe, sweet but still with a tang. But when they get really ripe I loathe them, they have a volatile smell that just makes me feel ill.

But this week I bought six perfectly ripe ones to make some mango with coconut sticky rice for dessert at my Mum’s birthday. This dish has become a family favourite after my sister spent a couple of years in Thailand. We all ate it when visiting and have all fallen in love with it.

It is easy to make and is so delicious, a combination of soft, sticky, sweet, tart and salty.

Every time I eat it, I can imagine I am Thailand. Tonight is even humid and hot with a thunderstorm to add to the illusion…


coconut sticky rice with mango
prep time
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recipe type: dessert
cuisine: vegan
serves: 4
  • 1 cup sticky rice (also called glutinous rice)
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 2 tbs brown sugar or palm sugar
  • a big pinch of salt
  • 1 or 2 mangoes
Steaming Method
  1. Soak the rice in warm water for at least 10 minutes.
  2. Line a steamer with a piece of baking paper that is cut to be smaller than the steamer and punch a few holes in it.
  3. Add the rice onto the paper.
  4. Steam the rice for 20 minutes or until done.
Microwave Method - I prefer this as it is easier, but be careful with the timing
  1. Soak the rice in warm water for at least 10 minutes with the water covering the rice by about ½ cm.
  2. Put a plate on top of the bowl to cover it and microwave on high for 3 minutes, stir and microwave for another 3 minutes. If it needs any further cooking, do this in bursts of 1 minute. It is easy to overcook and you want the grains still identifiable, not a bowl of mush.
Putting it together
  1. Once the rice is done by whichever method you choose, put the cooked rice into a bowl.
  2. Mix the coconut milk, sugar and salt in a small saucepan and bring to a gentle simmer.
  3. Remove from the heat and pour ⅔ of it over the rice and gently fold in. Don't worry too much about mixing it, the warm rice will absorb the coconut milk.
  4. Place a portion of the rice into a serving bowl, top with sliced ripe mango and pour over some of the reserved coconut milk mix.


tapioca pudding

tapioca pudding

No, don’t say erk and run away…I know it sounds like boarding school and bad food, but it is delicious.

I have bad memories of tapioca as a child and after eating this I don’t know why. This pudding is the last word in comfort food.

One day a few weeks back when I was shopping in Fairfield I came across a tapioca, coconut milk fruit dessert tub made by Arlington’s. It was marked vegan and I’m always ready to give a vegan product a go. My expectations were not high, given my previous childhood horror of tapioca, but I was blown away. However at the rate I was scoffing them I was going to be poor very soon.

So I decided to make my own. It is a very easy dessert or breakfast food to make. Cook the tapioca in some sweetened coconut milk and water, add some pureed fruit. Cool and set.

tapioca pudding with fruit

This time I made mine with some apples and quinces from the garden. I ate it for breakfast this morning garnished with some apples cooked with raspberries.


tapioca pudding
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recipe type: dessert, sweet, breakfast
cuisine: Vegan
serves: 4
  • ½ cup tapioca pearls
  • 300 ml coconut cream
  • 280 ml water
  • 5 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 cup pureed fruit of your choice (I used a mix of apples and quinces cooked with cinnamon and cloves)
  1. Put the tapioca, coconut cream and water into a saucepan
  2. Bring to a simmer and cook until the pearls are clear and no longer have a bite
  3. Add the fruit (I made mine partly pureed with the occasional chunk for a contrast)
  4. Add sugar to taste. I needed about 5 teaspoons.

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