Recipes, Salty

Potato and Carrot Soup

Nothing says sweater weather better than orangey colors! Soups take over the menu as we prep to get into the chilly winter season.

This may not be pumpkin soup (not there yet), but it is very creamy, hearty, with a harmonious combination of sugar and spice.

It’s a fairly easy recipe, especially that I use canned baby carrots! All you need is chopping skills and you’re good to go.

Let me know if you try it, tweak it, hate it or love it!


Ingredients (3 servings) 🛒

  • 195g canned baby carrots
  • 3 medium-sized white potatoes
  • 1 medium onion
  • 3 big garlic cloves
  • 1 vegetable stock cube
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp grounded allspice
  • A pinch of: cumin and nutmeg
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tbsps. olive/vegetable oil
  • 3 cups of water
  • Oregano and olive oil (optional garnish)

👩‍🍳Preparation (30 min)👩‍🍳

  1. Chop the garlic and add to a pot with 2 tbsps. of oil. Heat on high until it starts simmering, then lower to medium heat for around 2min.
  2. In the meantime, cut onion into half-moons add to pot and fry on medium heat for 5-6min. until softened. Stir throughout.
  3. Meanwhile, peel and chop the potatoes into cubes.
  4. Once the onion and garlic soften, add allspice and cinnamon, mix well. Add potato cubes, mix a little bit.
  5. Add 3 cups of boiling water, bring to high heat.
  6. Add vegetable stock, mix well.
  7. Once water starts to boil, cover to simmer. Let simmer on low heat for 15 min.
  8. Open the pot and check if the potato softened, if they did, add carrots, bring back to a boil and let simmer on low heat for another 5 min.
  9. Uncover the pot, make sure carrots and potatoes are well cooked. Turn heat off, and with a hand blender blend the mixture really well.
  10. If not creamy enough, leave on low heat halfway through blending until enough water evaporates.
  11. Add nutmeg, cumin, and salt to taste. Mix well.

Serving 🍴

  • Serve warm, you can sprinkle some oregano on top.
  • Option to add a line of olive (or even truffle!) oil.

I really hope you have fun preparing this one. Please do not hesitate to DM me on IG or email me if you have any questions of trouble in the process !!


Recipes, Sweet

Lebanese Turmeric Cakes

This is the vegan adaptation of my amazing aunt’s recipe. Turmeric Cakes are incredibly easy to make; this is great to prepare with kids, or if it’s your first time baking!

Cakes that transport me right back home, whenever I need it.

Let me know if you try it, tweak it, hate it or love it!


Ingredients (27x15cm/10.5″x5.9″ pan)photo_2020-08-12_22-14-14

  • 1 cup flour
  • 3 cups semolina
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 tbsps Turmeric
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup plant milk (oat recommended)
  • 1 cup oil

Optional: some sesame seeds for the top



Preparation

  1. Heat oven 180C/356F
  2. Mix all ingredients until homogeneous it’s that simple! I’d recommend sifting the flour, and starting with the dry ingredients, followed by the wet ones.
  3. Pour into pan, sprinkle with pine nuts, sesame seeds, and/or peeled almonds, place on middle rack, and let bake for 30-35min. until golden.

 


Serving 

Let it cool for around 30 min. before serving.


 

photo_2020-08-12_22-14-14

I really hope you have fun preparing this one. Please do not hesitate to DM me on IG or email me if you have any questions of trouble in the process !!

Recipes, Salty

My Bolognese sauce

This is a classic Monday after-school lunch. It was a habit in our home when I was in school, and I find myself repeating it as a grown-up every single week.

Nothing too complicated about this dish; as long as you can make spaghetti or pasta, you’re good to go!

If you’re allergic to or don’t like soy, you can replace it with yellow or brown lentils!

Let me know if you try this, tweak it, hate it or love it!


Ingredients (3-4 servings)IMG-20200724-WA0067

  • 400g of tomato sauce OR chopped tomatoes can (these should also contain some sauce)
  • 8 tbsps or 200g of tomato puree
  • 1/2 cup of dried brown minced soy
  • 1 large onion
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2+2 tbsps of vegetable oil
  • 1 cube of vegetable stock
  • 1/4 tsp of each: cinnamon, all-ground spices, paprika, oregano
  • 1/8 tsp of each: cinnamon, 7 spices, garlic powder, paprika, cumin

If you’re allergic to soy, you can replace it with red or brown lentils. Just make sure you cook them well in water, drain them, then add spices. 

Preparation

Prepare the Soy:

  1. Soak your brown minced soy in boiling water until most liquid is absorbed
  2. Drain, then place in a big frying pan forming as thin as a layer as you can
  3. Add 2 tbsps of vegetable oil, and 1/8 tsp of each (cinnamon, 7 spices, garlic powder, paprika and cumin) mix, and turn on medium to high heat
  4. Repeat this procedure until soy is crisp and brown:
    Every time you form a layer in your pan, wait till the soy barely starts to stick to the pan (you can test this with a wooden spoon on the edges), scrape, mix, and form a layer again.
    The time needed for the soy to stick will be decreasing between one round and another.
    Once soy starts to brown, turn to medium heat. For the last couple rounds, turn to low heat to avoid burning.
  5. Set aside in a bowl.

For the Sauce

  1. Dice the onion and garlic cloves, and fry them with 2 tbsps of vegetable oil in a pot on medium to low heat.
  2. Once onions soften, add tomato puree, and the rest of the spices (1/4 tsps). Mix well and let fry for a minute on low heat.
  3. Add cooked soy, mix.
  4. Add tomato sauce OR chopped tomatoes, mix on medium heat.
  5. Add the cube of vegetable stock to the mixture directly, stir well.
    keep stirring to avoid a popping red mess
  6. Add spices/salt to taste. Option to add some olive oil.

Serving 

  • I love having this with whole wheat or gluten free spaghetti.
  • If you’re into a “watery” dish, add sauce on top of spaghetti before serving.
  • I personally prefer mixing it with the spaghetti before serving it, and storing them this way in the fridge as well; this will allow the spaghetti to absorb some of the sauce.

I really hope you have fun preparing this one. Please do not hesitate to DM me on IG or email me if you have any questions of trouble in the process !!

IMG-20200724-WA0067

On a Side Note, Recipes

Chickpea Salad

I once accidentally mashed chickpeas, and I couldn’t get over how much they looked like canned tuna. Not a huge fan of tuna myself, I figured what I actually liked about tuna sandwiches/salads was the dressing and overall mix.

I came up with this chickpea salad, which reminds me of tuna sandwiches and pasta salads at kids’ birthdays. It doesn’t take too long to prepare, around 20 min tops (provided you get your chickpeas in a can), and is super budget friendly!

Let me know if you try it, tweak it, hate it or love it!

photo_2020-07-21_17-46-41


Ingredients (2 servings as main, 4 as a side)

  • 400g canned chickpeas
  • 200g canned corn
  • 10 cherry tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup of: green olives cut in quarters, OR, cornichons/pickles cut in small pieces, OR both!
  • My Lemon Mayo dressing‘s ingredients

Preparation 

  1. Boil the chickpeas in their water until they become extra soft, and ready to mash.
  2. In the meantime, prepare the dressing, and cut the cherry tomatoes in 1/4s.
  3. Mix all cold ingredients in a bowl.
  4. Mash the chickpeas, let them cool/put them under cold water or in the fridge for a few minutes.
  5. Mix all ingredients together.
  6. Add dressing if serving immediately.

Serving 

I like serving this with a sprinkle of dry parsley on top!

  • Option to have this with whole wheat tortillas
  • Option to cut the chickpea quantity in half, and serve with pasta

photo_2020-07-21_16-54-03

Recipes, Salty

Lentil Kebbe /كبّة عدس

Whenever I hear “kebbe”, I am immediately taken back to school days.

This is a pie-like dish that we prepare in Lebanon with a lot of meat. The traditional vegan version is made with pumpkin.

Since pumpkin isn’t always in season, and Kebbe is technically the birthday cake of savory dishes, I decided to try making it with lentils instead!

Here is the result, and I’m definitely a huge fan.
My whole family is actually; half the pan was gone in barely an hour.

You will unfortunately need a food processor for this.
Let me know if you try it, tweak it, hate it or love it in the comments below!


photo_2020-06-06_21-32-05

Ingredients (around a 10 inch/26 cm round pan)
For the external layers:

  • 1.25 cups red lentils
  • 1.25 cups brown (soft) bulgur
  • 1 big yellow/white onion (keep a small one aside too)
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cups mint leaves (you’ll start with 1/2, and might want to add 1/4 according to taste)
  • 2 tsps salt
  • 3/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/4 tsp 7 spices
  • 1/4 tsp cumin

For the filling:

  • 1 big onion
  • 1/2 cup brown lentils
  • 3 tsps raw pine nuts
  • a pinch of cinnamon
  • a pinch of cumin
  • 1/4 tsp seven spices
  • 1/2 tsp summac
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 to 1.5 heaped tbsp pomegranate molasses

Preparation– bear with me, it’s a long one.

  1. Rinse and drain lentils
  2. Place lentils in 2 separate pots (one for brown, one red), and add enough water to reach the equivalent of double the lentils’ height.
  3. Bring to a boil, then cover to simmer.

Only turn off heat once:
a. the red lentils are completely soft, almost overcooked.
b. the brown lentils open up, and become extremely soft.
Tip: If the lentils haven’t reached that state and most of the water is evaporated, add more water.
This should take the red lentils around 20 min, and the brown lentils around 45 min (could go up to 1h).


While the lentils are cooking, let’s start with the surrounding layers:

  1. Cut one big onion in 4-5 pieces
  2. Rinse the bulgur and drain (there will always be some water you won’t be able to drain, that’s okay)
  3. Place onion pieces and bulgur in food processor
  4. Add 1/2 cup of mint leaves to the food processor first, then add the rest to taste
  5. Blend well
  6. Add spices, blend well, and taste. Add whatever spice/element you think is missing

Once the red lentils are cooked, drain them really well, then add to food processor and blend. Let this mixture rest.

photo_2020-06-06_21-05-57


Once the brown lentils are ready, prepare the filling:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 200C/392F
  2. Drain the lentils and set aside
  3. Dice a big onion and fry in a pan on medium heat with some vegetable oil
  4. Add a pinch of 7 spices and cinnamon, mix
  5. In a separate pan, roast the pine nuts on low heat until golden: make sure to keep an eye on them at all times – move them around every once in awhile to keep them from burning
  6. Once onions begin to soften, add pine nuts and lentils with an extra tbsp of olive oil (vegetable oil works too)
  7. Allow them to fry for around 3-5 min

Use a wooden spoon to mix; you want the lentils to soften even more, and blend with the onion.

  • Add the rest of the spices, and the pomegranate molasses. Adjust to taste.

That’s it for the filling! Set aside.

photo_2020-06-06_21-05-47


Check up on the layer mix in the food processor, it should be slightly dryer by now
Tip: if it’s still too liquid and sticky, try adding some more bulgur, blend well, and wait. If it’s too dry, add water and/or olive oil a tbsp at a time. You want it to be dry enough to be handled as a paste, but not too dry (breaking).

  1. Grease a 10inch/26cm round pan with some olive oil
  2. Take half of the mix from the food processor, and use your hands to create an even layer in the pan
    You want to create a slightly higher level along the borders to keep the filling inside
  3. Add filling mix, and spread evenly across the pan photo_2020-06-06_21-05-44
  4. Add second half of the mix from the food processor, and using your hands, create an upper layer without letting it mix with the filling. Close the borders.
  5. Decorate the upper layer with a fork or a knife, dividing it just like a pizza, and drizzle with some more olive oil

photo_2020-06-06_22-42-23

Place in heated oven on the middle rack for 30-35 min, until bottom hardens.
Tip: keep it in oven for another 5-10 min; turn off bottom heat, and turn on the upper heat. This will ensure a crisp and golden surface.

photo_2020-06-06_22-41-54


👩‍🍳How to Serve 👩‍🍳

I’m enjoying my Kebbe in the picture with some VG Laban (Lebanese yogurt). You can have it with a pomegranate salad, extra pomegranate molasses, or with Fattoush (traditional lebanese salad) as well.

Could be served warm or cold, according to your preference.


I really hope you have fun preparing this one. Please do not hesitate to DM me on IG or email me if you have any questions of trouble in the process !!

In the meantime, stay home, stay safe, and let’s survive this one delicious vegan recipe at a time.

photo_2020-06-06_21-32-07