27 May 2017

Changes – Important update!

Dear Friends,

The time has come to tell you about some changes that will happen in my life soon, and will also affect this blog. It's both exciting and sad news at the same time.

Last year a referendum about Britain's membership in the European Union took place. Surprisingly to most, a slight majority was in favour of leaving the bloc. People voted for different reasons, some of them were personal, some emotional, and some people might have been misled or uninformed. It might not have become the independence day that some were longing for either, but hopefully there will be a good outcome for normal British people and the whole of Europe. As you may know, the VegHog is an EU immigrant in Britain, and my status along many others was very much put into question due to these developments. So here is my big announcement: I have decided to leave the country.

At the end of this month I will be moving to Copenhagen in Denmark, and plan to settle down there permanently. My partner and I had been contemplating moving for quite a long time, but the looming brexit made it all much more urgent. He is a British citizen, and prefers relocating to the continent. The move is going to be a bit emotional after over ten years in the UK, but sadly I don't recognise this country as the same welcoming place that I arrived to. I hope that everything will turn out for the best, but there will be some uncertain times ahead.

Of course I'm very excited about the move, as Copenhagen is my absolute favourite city and I will then be closer to home. It will also be difficult in the beginning, learning the language, getting everything sorted etc. but we are ready. I will certainly continue blogging, however it can be a bit quiet here in June, before I have gotten a proper internet connection in my new home and so on. I try to keep you updated about what's happening.

Now I want to thank you for being my faithful readers and really hope that you will be following my new adventures as well!

Your VegHog


22 May 2017

Just a salad


Sometimes just a salad is the right thing to eat. It's probably due to the spring and warmer weather that I have been craving for more salads lately, but I'm not at all unhappy about these healthier developments. This week seems to be getting very promising weather wise. Today is just a gorgeous summerly weather, but it's a shame that it's Monday and there isn't much time to do anything in the evening.

There are so many lovely ingredients around at the moment that are perfect in salads, and I want to use them all. I've also noticed that I order more salads in restaurants and cafés, which is quite unusual for me.

I tend to add cheese and nuts to make a salad more wholesome, and very often we notice how filling a salad dinner has been. It's not “just a salad” most of the time. I also added kabuki pea hummus to this salad plate, and it was very tasty. So here is this latest small salad creation.

What are your favourite salads like? Do you often have a salad lunch or dinner?



Your VegHog

21 May 2017

Staggeringly Good Brewery

A couple of weeks back we visited the Staggeringly Good Brewery in Portsmouth. They are a dinosaur themed brewery, which makes it quite endearing. The beers all have great names, such as StaggerSaurus, Swamp Water, Post Impact Porter, VelociRapture etc. I detected this brewery accidentally, when one of our local pubs had one of their beers on tap. Then we decided that we would have to visit them, as they are fairly close to us anyway.

The brewery itself is hidden away in an industrial area just by the Fratton football stadium, and there is a small tap room to enjoy the beers and looking at the quirky dinosaur decorations.

We tasted quite a few of the different beers on tap and in bottles, and even bought a mini keg to take home with us. They are all very nice beers and it was such a great visit.










19 May 2017

Golden Thai curry


I recently ate a golden curry at a local Thai restaurant, and instantly fell in love with the dish. It was so good, containing different veggies, tofu and spicy coconut milk broth, just wonderful! I've previously only had green and red Thai curries, and obviously love them, but this was one step up.

Therefore I wanted to try to make a golden Thai curry myself, and I must say that my own one was almost better than the one in the restaurant! Well, that may not be true, but I'm sure that this recipe will become a household favourite of ours. I thought that the crinkle cut butternut squash chips also added a nice touch. I so want a crinkle cutter now to make all vegetables that shape! 


Golden Thai curry

Ingredients

Golden curry paste

2 lemongrass stalks
2 cm fresh ginger
3 garlic cloves
2 red chillies
1 lime's juice
1 tbsp white miso
1 tbsp tomato purée
2 tsp palm sugar
1 tsp white pepper
½ tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
½ tsp ground turmeric
½ tsp ground cinnamon
3 tbsp vegetable stock

Other ingredients

280 g tofu
300 g crinkle cut butternut chips
2 carrots
1 large onion
Vegetable oil
400 ml coconut milk
1 cup jasmine rice

Method

Make the golden curry paste by puréeing all paste ingredients together into a smooth paste.

Cut the tofu into generous chunks and fry them in vegetable oil until golden brown and firm on the outside.

Cut the carrots into about 2 cm long sticks and coarsely chop the onion.

Cook the onion in vegetable oil until softened, then add the carrots to the pan, and after a while the curry paste.

Cook for a couple of minutes, add the coconut milk and let simmer until the flavours have blended nicely.

Bake the butternut squash chips in the oven until done and add them to the curry.

Cook the jasmine rice and serve together with the curry and enjoy!



I want to share this dish with Jacqueline's cooking challenge Meat Free Mondays for the National Vegetarian Week.


Your VegHog

17 May 2017

Kabuki pea burgers


This week has been quite rainy. It's still warm, but just really wet. I've caught a cold, but have also many things going on at the moment, so I can't really let that stop me. I also feel that comfort food is the right choice of the moment, and therefore made some vegetarian burgers to indulge in.

I made these veggie burger patties that are full of good proteins. The patties themselves are vegan and they contain kabuki peas, pea protein flakes, and fava bean flour. These made very tasty burgers and the patties held very well together.

Kabuki pea burgers

Ingredients

1 cup cooked kabuki peas
½ cup pea protein flakes
1 carrot
1 onion
2 garlic cloves
1 green chilli
1 tbsp olive oil
4 tbsp fava bean flour
1 tsp sea salt
½ tsp ground black pepper
Handful of fresh coriander

Toppings

Homemade carrot bun
Fried halloumi
Pea shoots
Smoked chilli pickle

Method

Cook the kabuki peas and briefly cook the finely chopped onion, garlic and chilli in olive oil. Also cook the pea protein flakes as per packet instructions.

Mix all the ingredients together and purée the peas slightly. I always like to leave some whole ones as well.

Shape burgers from the mix and fry on both sides in vegetable oil until brown.

Serve with any veggie burger fixtures you like. I served them with homemade carrot buns, fried halloumi, pea shoots, smoked chilli pickle and blue tortilla chips on the side. 



This recipe is my May Eat Your Greens recipe. Shaheen is hosting this month, head to her blog to admire the colourful entries.


I also want to Share this recipe with My Legume Love Affair #107 cooking challenge hosted this month by Siri and co-hosted by Lisa.


Your VegHog

16 May 2017

Glamping in Swanage

My partner and I spent a recent weekend in Swanage on the Isle of Purbeck along the Jurassic Coast, and it was just as wonderful as always. We stayed at this beautiful wooden glamping pod, which was so cosy and had a great view over the bay. I think that I have become a new fan of glamping (glamorous camping) through this experience and could have easily spent the whole weekend at the pod. But of course we had many things to see and places to visit, so the pod only had to give us shelter for the night.

I have written about Swanage and the surroundings many times before, but it just is my favourite corner of England. There are so many beautiful landscapes, heritage, castles, seaside, everything! The weather was fairly cloudy first, but then we also got some hot sunshine and a proper beergarden weather. It was pretty perfect for an outdoorsy weekend.

There was an annual diesel gala held by the Swanage Railway presenting all these cool old diesel trains, so we just rode them back and forth between the stations, occasionally taking breaks at the Dorset Beer and Cider Festival.

We enjoyed the traditional chips with salt and vinegar by the seaside and had some ice-creams. They taste so much better when had in the fresh sea air. If only the cunning seagulls don’t manage to steal anything.

On Sunday we hiked for quite a bit on the hills of Isle of Purbeck, got a tiny sunburn (first one of the year!) and really slept well after all that fresh air.

Here are some photos of our weekend. I hope you enjoy the views.






















15 May 2017

Rainbow chilli plate


This rainbow chilli plate was so nice and colourful and a joy to eat. It can be made fully vegan or with optional cheese and cottage cheese or sour cream served on the side. I just made a fairly basic tomato and black bean chilli for the protein and served some roasted bell peppers, yellow rice, lime-chilli-coriander salsa and blue maize tortilla chips on the side. It was wonderfully tasty and made me smile. Every dish should be like this! 


Here is what my Rainbow chilli plate consisted of:

Tomato and black bean chilli

1 onion
3 garlic cloves
1 chilli
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 can / 240 g black beans
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
½ tsp sea salt
1 can / 400 g chopped tomatoes
1 tsp smoked chilli paste

Roasted bell peppers

2 bell peppers (orange & yellow)
Vegetable oil for roasting

Yellow rice

½ cup basmati rice
1 small can / 140 g sweetcorn
½ tsp turmeric
½ tsp salt
1 tsp vegetable stock powder

Lime-chilli-coriander salsa

Juice of 1 lime
1 green chilli
1 small garlic clove
½ tsp sea salt

Blue maize tortilla chips




Have a great week!

Your VegHog