vegan strawberry shortcake cookies

It’s challenging converting a tasty recipe to vegan as the flavours and textures can be very different from the original recipes. I always think vegan recipes need to be more fun, so I am trying to come up with fun recipes on this blog that are not only vegan but look and taste as good if not better than the original. I’m trying these cookies out on three foodie friends in a minute who love dairy, and they don’t hold back in telling me what they think about my new recipes.
Ok, I’m back…they loved them and they thought they were very pretty and tasted delicious and wanted the recipe before I publish it. We all decided they would be very nice with vegan vanilla ice cream, I love Swedish Glace and fresh strawberries or they would be perfect for making an ice cream sandwich with…or simply with just a slice of strawberry on top.

Recipe

Makes  20 cookies.

Ingredients:
1 cup of warmed mild coconut oil, you can use ordinary coconut oil too
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
1/2 cup golden caster sugar
2 and a half cups of plain flour (I use white organic spelt flour)
1 cup of freeze dried strawberries Sainsbury’s baking section
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of lemon juice
4 tablespoons of icing sugar

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red onion bahji

A freshly made onion bhaji is one of the finest things in life and surprisingly easy to make. The perfect bhaji is crispy on the outside and waffley on the inside with the perfume of Indian spices and fried onions, making this a fantastic snack or accompaniment to an Indian meal. I cooked them in healthier coconut oil and my friends that tried them loved the coconutty flavour the oil gave them. I serve them with wedges of lemon or lime and a sprinkle of fresh coriander, but they are equally good with mango or lime chutney, tamarind sauce or a cucumber raita.

Recipe

Makes about 8.

Ingredients:
2 medium red onions
A pinch of salt
2 minced garlic cloves
2 teaspoons curry powder
1 teaspoon of tumeric
5 tablespoons of gram flour
Water, as needed
Coconut oil for frying
Salt and pepper

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Georgia O’Keeffe’s chocolate brownies

These really are the best brownies I have ever tasted because they are not too sweet and are really chocolatey and nutty. My friends all ask me to bake them for them after they saw the shots on Instagram and started dribbling at the sight of them, and they really are dribble-worthy. The story about these amazing chocolate brownies is as follows. This recipe was found amongst the painter Georgia O’Keeffe’s collection of recipes in her cookbooks. She was a passionate cook and this recipe was hand written by her on Waldorf Astoria note paper. She was was staying there on April 30th 1963 to collect an award for the creative arts from Brandeis University, so they think she must have asked the hotel for the recipe because she loved them so much. O’Keeffe was a passionate foodie and collected recipes wherever she went, and a bit like me she dipped into healthy food and dipped into more indulgent food depending on her whim. Try them, they are beyond.

Recipe

Makes 8 large brownies.

Ingredients:
1 cup of butter
114g of dark chocolate (I use Green and Blacks)
1 cup of plain flour (I use spelt)
¼ teaspoon of salt
2 cups of finely chopped walnuts (I smash them with a rolling pin while they are still in the bag)
2 eggs (or egg replacer for 2 eggs from health food store)
2/3 cup of sugar (I used golden caster sugar)
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract

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chewy double chocolate vegan cookies

Chocolate biscuits are up there as one of the best things to munch on with a cup of coffee or tea, and I love to have a snack on the go at all times. These biscuits are really chocolatey and chewy because they are made with golden syrup. They have quite a grownup taste because the flavours are quite intense and very chocolatey, which I like. You really know you have had a hit of chocolate when you have had one of these. Ralph and I think they are beyond delicious and really moreish.

Recipe

Makes about 18.

Ingredients:
1/2 cup melted coconut oil(I use mild from health stores or online)
1/2 cup of golden caster sugar
1/4 cup of dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons of golden syrup
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
1 cup of plain flour (I use white spelt)
1/4 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder
egg replacer for 1 egg (from health stores or online)
1/4 teaspoon of baking soda
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/3 cup of dark chocolate chips

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healthy matchstick fries

Fries are one of the best things in life. And these fries only take about five minutes to fry. They are healthier because they are fried in coconut oil, which doesn’t become toxic at high temperatures. I use mild coconut oil which has no taste or smell, so you get a proper chip flavour. You can use olive oil too and it’s still healthier than damaged fats, it’s really up to you, they will still taste fab. I usually serve mine with Maldon sea salt, but they are also perfect as a snack or with salads and as garnish on top of curries, tartines, in sandwiches or with whatever you fancy. My favourite kind of food.

Recipe

Ingredients:
1-2 large potatoes per person
Mild coconut oil
Maldon sea salt

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chewy vegan florentines

I took a Mary Berry recipe for Florentines and converted it to a vegan recipe, so they are dairy free. What is missing in some vegan baking is the luxurious taste of fine ingredients and interesting textures. These Florentines are chewy, tasty and very lux, perfect for a special occasion or just with coffee as a treat.
I’m testing them out later on friends, and I won’t tell them they are vegan then I’ll get back to you…..yay they loved them and couldn’t tell they were vegan.

Recipe

Makes 18.

Ingredients:
50g of coconut oil (I use mild)
50g of golden caster sugar
50g of golden syrup
50g of plain flour (I used white spelt)
25g of glacé cherries finely chopped
50g of candied peel finely chopped
50g of flaked almonds
1/2 teaspoon salt
200g of plain chocolate ( I use green and blacks plain cooking chocolate)

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truffle fries with fried eggs

Sometimes it’s the simplest things that are the best things and like most people I have loved egg and chips ever since my foodie sister took me to a greasy spoon when we were teenagers. At home we were used to eating European food and this was the best kind of British food and a revelation on every level, and something my mum would never have cooked us, so it felt rather exotic. It’s still up there in my memory as one of the best meals I ever had in a restaurant. However, I thought I’d ramp up the flavours a notch and create a newer version using olive oil, truffle oil, parsley and Burford eggs. You can use coconut oil, and there is a taste free version now in health food stores. I’m just eating this now having photographed it for this post, and all I’m thinking is it’s so delicious I can’t wait for Ralph to try it, and it is a perfect date night dinner.

Recipe

Serves 2.

Ingredients:
2 large potatoes (floury types work best, like Russet, Desiree, King Edward or Maris piper)
3 tablespoons of olive oil or coconut oil
Very finely chopped parsley (optional)
2 tablespoons of truffle oil (now available in supermarkets at around £3.50 a bottle which will last for ages) or truffle salt
1-2 eggs per person
Salt and pepper to taste

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