Category Archives: FOOD

QUICK ENERGY SMOOTHIES

Most days I’ll make myself a fast and easy green smoothie for breakfast.
I love green smoothies as a start to my day, coz they put up my veg/fruit intake in an instance, are really fresh and give me quite a boost of energy.
And the washing up is done in a minute if you do it straight after, just rinse the friggin blender and off you go.
Also they can taste really nice.

I’ve got a pretty shitty blender, which doesn’t just chew up about anything you throw in there, like you see people do in youtube videos with their really fancy blenders.

So, I have to kind of consider what I throw in.

For an easy and healthy breakfast, for which you can even use a shitty blender(well tried by myself) I’ll use,

4 bananas
2 handfuls of spinach
1-2 tbsp of cold pressed hemp oil
600ml cold water

Blend for about a minute. This should be enough for 2 people.

Enjoy.

Love smoothies!

Love smoothies!

Hemp oil is the bomb. Apparently. It has all sorts of good shit in it, like Omega 3 and Omega 6 and chlorophyll.

Best to get in organic quality. Very cold pressed. Check the suppliers info for details on the pressing process they use. The colder and quicker the process and the less oxygen touches the oil during it, the better.

I use bananas, coz they taste nice and are easy to get. And I use spinach, coz I like it’s mild, fresh and buttery taste. I don’t like rucola for a daily smoothie, it’s too strong and I don’t like the taste of silverbeet.
Kale would be a great option also, but a shitty blender just can’t handle that stuff.

I like this as my basic daily smoothie. But you can experiment with different add ins or use other ingredients you like better.

So, here is a bonus recipe, over Easter I tried my hands on some fancy shit.

green smoothie2

Delicious and healthy!

QUICK ENERGY SMOOTHIE

Use the stuff of the basic smoothie and add,

1 tbsp of spirulina
1 tbsp of cocoa powder
5 dates

I got the Spirulina at a raw food expo the other week, from a guy who grows it in the Provence in green houses, using only solar energy. All organic and shit. Nice stuff. Here is his website, unfortunately it’s only in German and French, but he’s got some cool pics on there.

For the cocoa powder I used a sweetened one(with raw sugar), gave me a nice sugar kick, but also a little crash.
If you wanna avoid the crash, using unsweetened raw cocoa might be better.

Enjoy your healthy meal and have fun experimenting!

FREESTYLE RAW CHOCOLATE BROWNIE

This is a no food processor recipe. I have been experimenting with raw foods since a while and always wanted to try some raw chocolate brownies.

I was meeting up with some people this week and thought that this would be a good reason to finally try making some raw, vegan sweets that also taste nice.

Drool!

Drool!

Now, my process of cooking often works like this. I get an idea of what I want to make, check the internet to get a vague idea what goes into the recipe, then I get the ingredients and throw them together how it feels right.

I also don’t have a food processor and if you are really into the raw foods you probably need one, but I just have to improvise.
This cake isn’t 100% raw, coz I bought ground almonds and hazelnuts, which are already roasted. If you want truly raw nuts you’ll probably have to do some research and order them over the net, coz I don’t think most regular organic shops sell them. And if they do sell them, they are most likely not ground yet. So yeah, the food processor problem..

Anyways, I got the ingredients and then just eyeballed it.

This is roughly what I used(and btw, this recipe is for about 4 people),

ground almonds 2 cup(about 200gr)
ground hazelnuts 1 cup(about 100gr)
cocoa powder 2 tbsp

1/2 cup banana (no chips, I think they are disgusting, get the chewy kind)
1/2 cup dates
If you have no banana use more dates instead or use raisins or whatever you like, this is just for taste and sweetness.

coconut oil 8 tbsp
thickened apple juice sweetener 6 tbsp (I don’t like agave juice, I think it’s too processed, also apples=more local)
lukewarm water 1/2 cup

Mix the almonds, hazelnut and cocoa powder.

Chop the banana and dates really finely, dump into the mix.

Warm up the coconut oil gently, don’t overheat it to keep the most of its healthy properties, mix it with the lukewarm water and the sweetener, dump into the mix and stir til everything is mixed nicely.
Taste mixture and make sure you like it.

I used a cute, little square dish(that I found in the street sometime) to put the mixture in. It’s about 15cmx15cm.

Put into fridge over night.

Cut into small slices.

Enjoy.

Great texture. And it cuts really well!

Great texture. And it cuts really well!

Backstory:
The reason I wanted to make something with coconut oil is, that there was a person with dementia at the gathering, so I thought I would make something with extra virgin coconut oil.
Some people swear by the use of coconut oil to treat and prevent Alzheimer and dementia. I know eating it once probably won’t help much, but it can’t hurt, right?!

It’s funny when you meet with people that are a bit conservative and ..somehow set in their ways(most families?) and you tell them “I made some vegan cake and this is the first time I tried it, so I hope you like it!”. I was a bit nervous to be honest.
And after they had a slice you tell them, “By the way, I also didn’t cook it and there is no flour in it!”
And what do they do?! They say they like it and take another slice!!
You know, that’s the feeling of satisfaction.

That was cool. So the cake was a success and I know another healthy, vegan treat I can make for myself when I have cravings for something sweet.

Which raw, vegan treats have you tried making?

ARE YOU SHARING YOUR FOOD?

Some people, including Valentin Thurn, the guy who made the ‘Taste The Waste’ documentary  started a website called www.foodsharing.de .

A website where you can put up food you aren’t going to eat, coz you bought too much or the shit’s growing like crazy in your garden and you can’t eat all of it yourself.

You can put up a “Essenskorb”, which is German for food basket and other people can contact you thru the website and pick it up. I think this is pretty awesome shit!

They only started their website in mid December, but already have more then 5500 active users on their website and redistributed more then 800kg of food since then.

These people really got it together, respect to them! They have also already set up a hotspot in Berlin, including a fridge, where people can drop off and pick up food if it’s available.

Apart from private people, this concept is trying to involve businesses, like bakeries and restaurants which can give food away at the end of the day.
It offers a great alternative to food stamps or food banks by charities.
For a lot of people it’s embarrassing to go to these places and some places make distribution dependent on stupid requirements, like eligibility for welfare.

I love the foodsharing idea, coz it gives people a better social connection and a feeling of independence from charitable and government handouts.

I love this, coz eating is fucking essential to being alive. And most of us spend a lot of money on food.

I love it, coz the concept is expandable, into projects like cooking together, where people cud meet up and everyone brings a couple of ingredients along.

Saying this, I went to a vegan lunch the other day. It was pretty awesome, everybody brings something and you meet somewhere with like-minded people. How great is that, nice food, resource exchange and building of a community! What more could you want!?

I’d also like to say how fucking crazy, disgusting and corrupt I find the propaganda from big corporations like Monsanto and the like, who propagate the need for GM-foods to feed the world!

90 Million TONS of food get thrown out in the EU alone each year. You don’t need much of a brain to understand that the problem of starvation is caused by a dysfunctional distribution system rather then insufficient food production.

As if we just have to produce more food and people in poor countries or poor people in general will just magically be able to afford it!

Countries, in which people are starving in the first place, coz they get so fucked over by corporations and corrupt governments that they can’t grow their own food or have to sell it to countries where people can actually pay for it.

And of curz, the way mainstream media reports about so called solutions to famine is very narrowminded and selective. There is no mention about how much food gets destroyed thru being fed to animals in the meat industry and how industrial agriculture depletes the soil and will make growing food this way in the future impossible.

What I’m saying is, Fuck GM-foods, Fuck Big Agra propaganda and Fuck corporations like Monsanto that make a profit from fucking with people(don’t get me started on GMO’s, that’s a topic for a whole bunch of posts entirely!).

We need to reconnect with our food and stop seeing it as a commodity that is “naturally” freely available in the shelves of our supermarkets for some of us and really scarce for others.
And we need to start seeing it as the stuff that grows in the ground and plays a vital role in keeping us alive.

Love the food and love the people you’re eating it with!

Food is important and it’s more fun to share it!

NO CHICKEN SALAD

This is one of the most delicious things I’ve made in weeks! Just writing about it makes me so hungry, I seriously just wanna make this salad again tomorrow!

But first let’s talk about the name. When the conversation comes to fake meats there is often someone who can’t keep it to themselves and cries out, “Why do these damn vegans always copy meat dishes, they should be making their own dishes. This is fucking disgusting and they shouldn’t be allowed to do this!” My opinion is, these people need to shut up and chill the fuck out! Seriously, who cares?! If there is NO MEAT in it, you can make it taste like whatever you fucking want. Also, what they might not (want to) consider is, that there are certain foods you might have enjoyed in your former meat and dairy eating past and even if not, who cares if it tastes good?!

And then there is this other group of specialists! When they hear something about a “vegan chicken salad”, they are like “Yeah, I had chicken too today and it was vegan. Like, you know, it was on a vegan diet. HA HA HA..” Seriously… I try not to even start commenting on.. that…

Well anyways, I call this a “No Chicken Salad” coz it’s easier to understand what taste we’re going for. So people can easily recognize it. In reality it’s an asparagus, mushroom, soy meat salad. Which is quite a moutful. Literally!

So tasty!

But anyways here goes the recipe,

4 cups soy meat
1 cup canned asparagus (or if in season use fresh)
2 cups fresh champignons
8 tbsp of margarine
1 onion
1 cup vegan Mayonnaise
1 clove of garlic
1 can of mandarines
1 tbsp paprika
vegetable oil
tamari-sauce
salt pepper

put the soy meat with some salt in a bowl cover with boiling water, leave for at least 15min

peel fresh asparagus and chop up into 1/2″ pieces, cook in some salt water til soft

canned asparagus can be chopped up straight away

dice champignons, not too small and fry in some oil, put salt and pepper in to taste and half of the onion, finely chopped, turn down temperature and let simmer

drain soy meat well, and if bigger pieces, cut them up fairly small

fry up soy meat in margarine, season with tamari sauce, put rest of the finely chopped onion in, leave until meat slightly crunchy, add crushed garlic and season to taste with salt, pepper and paprika

mix all ingredients, let cool down, chill in fridge and add vegan mayonnaise.

season again to taste

Of curz this is another recipe, slightly altered, which I’ve got from Björn Moschinski. Who is really making some great stuff and is also easy to watch in those instruction videos(not so easy if you don’t speak German, but I’ll post the video here anyways).

This is so delicious, you need to try it! Maybe it’s just one of these things Germans are used to, mayonnaise based, protein rich salads, but I think most people should like this.

Try it out and let me know what you think!

MAYO WARS

Yesterday I’ve made another attempt to make the best vegan mayo ever. Or just an edible version would have done.

Last time I’ve made it it tasted kind of .. questionable. I think that was due to making it partially with olive oil(coz I’ve ran out of sunflower oil in the middle of production) and to the fact that I was so stunned by getting it to a perfect consistency that I didn’t dare seasoning it.

So, the taste was quite overwhelming and strong. Not so great.

Yesterday, I wanted to make a “vegan chicken salad”, so I needed some more mayonaise. And why buy it?! Vegan mayo is fucking expensive and I also like learning how to make things from scratch. Sometimes..
Not so much the first two trials.

I’ve only put soy milk in it and vegetable oil and both times, it turned into a gluggy mass. Like a big jug of really oily milk. Yuck!!
It was gross. And what a waste!! But what are you supposed to make with that?! Down the drain I’d say!

The first time I used soy milk from a regular supermarket. It had some additives in it, sugar, stabilizers, crap like that. I’ve added a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to the milk before the oil, as it was suggested in the german video below. And regular sunflower oil.


An instruction video for our German friends – Ein how-to video für unsere deutschen FreundInnen

The second time(in between I had to go to the supermarket to get some more oil) I’ve used organic soy milk, made only from water and soy beans and canola oil.

By that time I was really sick of reading any more recipes. But I saw a great hint in one of the recipes which was, to put the oil in really slowly, because otherwise it’s too heavy and just goes straight to the bottom of the blender. That helped.

So here are my best tips for making the perfect vegan mayonnaise

•Use a small amount of soy milk(half a cup) for a trial, so you don’t waste so much of the ingredients if it doesn’t work out

•Pour the oil into the blender, which has to be at highest speed, VERY SLOWLY!! A very thin stream while still pouring it in steadily

•Apparently both, soy milk and oil should have room temperature(same temperature) or it won’t work

•If the oil is still a bit separate in the end, just put the mayo into a bowl and stir it while also stirring in the seasoning and the oil will blend with the rest

•Put the seasoning in after you’re happy with the consistency, some people put them in in the beginning, you might wanna do that once you’ve perfected your technique, otherwise, see above, regarding waste. You don’t wanna throw all this stuff in and then having to pour it down the drain

Perfect vegan mayo

And here is the recipe

1/2 cup soy milk
1 1/2 cups oil(flavour neutral oil, like sunflower or canola, or experiment with olive oil)

And then season to your liking. This is what I’ve put in.

1/2 tsp mustard
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar(or any other vinegar or lemon)
1 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tsp salt

I’m very picky with my mayo, I hated Australian mayonnaise, I refused to eat it and would only eat a certain Swiss brand. It’s gross, too sour and sweet and, brrr, just slimy.
But I’m really happy with how this recipe turned out. It tastes like The Real Deal. And you can season it up how you want it, which makes it taste even better.

Making the perfect mayonaise is like an art form!

Lunch

I would also recommend this recipe to meat eaters or vegetarians. I mean, why eat mayo with raw eggs if you don’t have to. Why take the risk of salmonella, that shit is dangerous. And raw eggs?! Gross!
And why eat animal products where it’s really not necessary?!

Just to make sure the recipe really works, I’ve tried it again today. Well, the first time it went shit again. What I’ve noticed already yesterday with one batch is, that it first solidifies and then all of a sudden goes liquid again. Which is so frustrating! Not sure if I’ve put too much oil in or put it in too fast, but I really tried to put it in as slow as possible. Maybe too much then?!
So, I don’t really wanna call myself a vegan mayo expert now. But I am! It doesn’t always turn out, but when it works, ‘Wow!’ lol

And if you think, “This shit is gross, coz too oily!” or if you can’t get it to work or wanna try something different, here are 2 more recipes, one is a raw almond mayonnaise and the other one a tofu mayonnaise. Have fun experimenting and tell me how it went!

VEGAN PASTA SALAD

If you follow The Forage on Facebook you might remember me talking about some vegan pasta salad I said I’d post the recipe of. That was about 2 months ago. Today I will finally post it. Yeah, that’s the speed I work at..

I’m a bit sluggish sometimes, but it’s a REALLY delicious salad so it needs to be done!

I love pasta salad by the way, I remember eating it as a kid, the more mayonnaise the better. It’s a finely tuned mix of sweet, sour, salty and fatty flavours. Oh My God, if you make it right it’s just so delicious. Also, if you make lots of it, it’s the perfect snack to pull out of the fridge when you come home after a day of work.
Or whatever else you do during the day. Or night.

I normally freestyle most of my food, so I just made a list of things I thought needed to be put in and served it to my guests at our house warming party. They loved it! I was so happy!!

Ok, but here’s the recipe, remember it’s vegan, so you need to get some vegan mayonnaise (mayonnaise is the key) from the health food shop, apparently they sometimes even have it at normal supermarkets too. I haven’t seen it there so far though.

Recipe for 8 people and then some,

fusilli(spirelli)  3bags of 500g
vegan mayo 2 jars
tofu smoked 1pack
vegan deli slices 1 pack
vegan sausages(spicy) 1 pack
(3 meaty things in total)
gherkins 1 jar
onion 2-3
apple 2
cherry tomatoes
mushrooms
or other veg
olive oil
capers 1 jar (optional)
salt
pepper
paprika
cayenne pepper

fry up mushrooms and tomatoes(you can use other vegetables of your choice, like zucchinis or peppers) in olive oil and some spices, when they are semi done let them cool

boil pasta, strain just before al dente and let cool

cut onions, apples, gherkins and sausages and all other ingredients into small pieces, I like them fairly small, but that’s a matter of taste

stir the mayo into the cool-ish pasta

and put the cooked vegetables and the rest of the chopped stuff in

add capers and spices to your liking

stir well

put in plastic container with lids and let sit in fridge over night

Of curz you can leave out any ingredient you or your guests wont like or are allergic too. Or add whatever else takes your fancy. I added the cayenne pepper quite freely, so the salad had quite a spicy kick to it, which thankfully everyone loved. Made it a bit different.

I made one batch with onion and one without, afterwards one of my friends said she didn’t quite like the apple, but she loved the salad, so I guess I could have left that out of one as well. Inquire about your friends dietary requirements beforehand if you’re not sure.

It was a delicious salad, I made another batch just for the two of us a few days later, but it wasn’t quite as good. I used a different kind of mayonaise, coz I couln’t find the other one and I blame that.

This is a great salad for a buffet when you have friends over or as I said, a semi-healthy quick meal.

Next time I might try a potato salad, I quite like that as well. I used to love a good egg salad, but I can’t imagine making a vegan egg salad..?
Have you ever made pasta salad? What’s your favourite non lettuce-ey salad?

VEGAN CHOCOLATE BROWNIES OR MUD CAKE OR SOMETHING

I know, I’ve really been bad with writing lately.. This whole ‘one post a day for a year thing’ apparently didn’t work out. I blame the move..

Anyways, I tried to get a bit more into cooking and baking lately. So I thought, if you want something sweet, “What’s better then chocolate brownies?!”. When I was vegetarian I used to make chocolate brownies every now and then and they were delicious. But that’s kind of easy if you can use 6 eggs or whatever..

So I thought I’d try a vegan version. I’ve had a few vegan cakes now and I thought it’s time to practice making my own.

So I got the following recipe:

2 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
2 cups brown sugar
2 tbs baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups water
4 tsp apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup over ripe banana mashed well
some olive oil(or another oil of your choice to grease pan)

mix dry ingredient

mix wet ingredients

pour wet into dry ingredients, mix well(if banana not very ripe mash up in blender)

pour batter into pan which you greased with an oil of your choice before

preheat oven to 170 Degrees C and bake for about 15-20 minutes depending on if you want it more gooey or more solid

Well, I think I went a bit overboard with the wet ingredients and the dough turned out quite runny. Next time, gotta cut down on that.
The cake has a very fluffy, kind of sticky texture, it really turned out more like a mud cake.

Also, I’m not quite satisfied with the taste yet, not sweet and chocolatey enough, even if the flavour improved over night, as it always seems to do. In the future I gotta take it easy on the wet ingredients and will replace the water with rice or some other plant based milk for a sweeter, creamier taste and maybe even put more cocoa powder in it. I also replaced the olive oil with coconut oil, but that was just for greasing the tin anyways.

Coz the man sourced the recipe, he forgot to put the chocolate chips on the shopping list, so I used a vegan chocolate spread as icing instead.

As I said I’m still experimenting. I will keep you updated on how the cake goes with the alterations. If you have any more suggestions on how to improve this recipe or have any favourite vegan (baked) treats let us know in the comments!