The Orange Almond Chocolate Cupcakes

by Anda Mtshemla

If you’ve been following this blog for any period of time, you may have noticed that I love to bake. I can confidently tell you that I bake almost weekly and there is nothing that brings me more joy than sharing my love with friends and family in the form of baked treats.

If you’ve ever baked, you know that baking is a science so as a regular person and not a scientist, my kitchen experiments sometimes flop. There are a number of other things that can go wrong in the kitchen when you bake from a temperamental stoveĀ (quite literally) giving you hell to the disaster that ensues when you over-bake your treat. It’s important to have a back-up plan for moments when you need to produce fresh baked goodies, fast and I have just the trick.

YOU WILL NEED:

1 4pkĀ Vegan Cocoa & Goji Berry Muffins (Woolworths)

160g Beacon Orange Almond Dark Chocolate

1 cup milk alternative

1 tsp orange zest (optional)

Method:

Transfer milk into a pot and heat it until just before it boils

Remove milk from heat and add chopped chocolate

Swirl pot gently to ensure all chocolate is covered

Allow to sit for 5 minutes

Whisk the chocolate and milk until mixture is smooth and glossy. This is your ganache

Refrigerate ganache for 30 minutes or until hardened

Remove almonds from the tops of the muffins and spread ganache over your muffins

Garnish with the almonds you removed and orange zest as desired

 

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3-Ingredient Orange Almond Chocolate Cupcakes

 

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The 3-Ingredient Apple Pie Pockets

by Anda Mtshemla

One of my favourite things about grocery shopping is finding accidentally vegan items. My latest “Not-Made-For-Vegans-But-Perfectly-Suitable-For-Them-To-Eat” discovery is ready-made puff pastry. The stuff famous for being packed with a tonne of butter to produce its flaky texture? Yup, vegan.

While most store-boughtĀ variations are vegan, there are some brands that contain animal products so make sure you read the ingredient list.

For this recipe, I’ve used this amazing accidentally vegan find as a shortcut to one of my favourite desserts at the moment and yes, you only need three things!

You will need:

1 cup applesauce

1 roll puff pastry (400g)

splash of soy milk (to be used as egg wash)

Method:

Pre-heat oven to 180Ā°C

Roll and smooth out the puff pastry sheet

Cut the pastry sheet into equal sized rectangles (a sheet this size gets you about 12 rectangles)

Spoon the applesauce into the centre of half of the rectangles, leaving room around the edges

Place the empty pastry rectangles on top of the applesauce filled ones, gently pressing down the edges of each one

Secure the edges of each pie pocket by gently pressing them down with a fork

Lightly score each of the pie pockets and brush generously with soy milk

Place in the pre-heated oven to bake for 12-15mins

Serve warm and enjoy on its own or with a serving of vegan ice cream

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3-Ingredient vegan apple pie pocket

The 3-Ingredient Chocolate Mousse

by Anda Mtshemla

As a vegan, most chocolate products are pretty much out so you’ll find yourself consuming a lot less chocolate. The upside, I’ve found, is that you consume higher quality chocolate because, with the animal products omitted from the chocolate you’re eating, there’s a lotĀ more room for that cocoa to shine.

This is an important thing to remember for this next recipe. Since we’ll be using a little bit of an unconventional ingredient, you need to make sure you find a good quality cocoa powder, or just one you know you enjoy, to use because that’s what’s really going to transform the flavour of this simple dessert.

You will need:

1/4 cup cocoa powder (sub for cacao if raw vegan)

2 tablespoons sweetener of choice (agave, maple syrup, granulated sugar)

SECRET INGREDIENT: 2 ripe avocados

If you prefer a richer, more chocolateyĀ mousse, you can skip the sweetner in the recipe completely!

Method:

Scoop avocados into blender along with your sweetener

Blend until completely smooth

Blend again while gradually adding cocoa powder

Serve as is or refrigerate and serve chilled

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Delicious and Healthy 3-Ingredient Rich Chocolate Mousse

 

The Homemade Applesauce

by Anda Mtshemla

Applesauce is one of those versatile ingredients that can be added to a variety of dishes and absolutely make it. Whether you use it as an egg replacer when baking, a sweetener for smoothies or just to add that classic apple-pie flavour to your morning oats, it’s a staple for every vegan pantry.

While most store-bought variations of this smooth, sweet stuff are vegan, they’re packed with sugar and preservatives and I’m of the belief that if you can make something at home healthily, cheaply and easily, you should.

My favourite thing about this recipe is that it’s a great way to put your overripe apples to good use– plus the natural sugars your ripened fruits have developed will make for an even better sauce!

You will need:

(for 1 cup of apple sauce)

6-8 small apples, peeled and cored

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/2 cup water

sweetener,Ā optional

Method:

Peel and core the apples then place in a large pot over medium-low heat

Add lemon juice and stir until apples are coated (add sweetener now too, if you choose)

Pour in water and give a final stir before covering

Leave to simmer for 20mins or until tender

Drain and allow to cool before pureeing in a food processorĀ or blender

Store in airtight container and refrigerateĀ for up to two weeks

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Homemade applesauce, ready to use

 

 

 

 

The 3-Ingredient Quinoa Risotto

by Anda Mtshemla

I know. You’re probably rolling your eyes wondering what kind of click-bait I’ve led you to now, but this is not a drill. You really do only need three essential ingredients to create this creamy and flavour packed risotto.

We’re using quinoa, so you’re not going to need to slave over the stove as you would with regular risotto, and you get to reap the health benefits of adding quinoa to your diet!

You will need:

1 cup white quinoa

450ml vegetable stock

1 cup chopped mushrooms

Method:

Place a large frying pan over medium-high heat

Pour the quinoa into pan and stir gently for 1 minute

Add a splash of stock and stir until combined

Pour half of the stock in the pan and stir until stock has absorbed

Add the mushrooms and combine well with quinoa

Pour in the remaining stock and allow mixture to simmer for 8-10minutes, or until stock has absorbed

Serve immediately as is, or add fresh thyme to garnish.

 

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Creamy mushroom and quinoa risotto served with fresh thyme

 

 

The 3-Ingredient Vegan McFlurry

by Anda Mtshemla

Believe it or not, “Milk’s Favourite Cookie” contains no milk. Or eggs. Or butter. Or any animal products at all, in fact, making them vegan-friendly. Many people’s favourite Oreo recipe, McDonald’s innovative take on famed “cookies ‘n cream” ice cream, is not vegan. But we can fix that.

PREP TIME: Overnight Ā COOK TIME: 5mins Ā MAKES: 2 servings

You will need:

4 frozen bananas

1 tsp vanilla essence

6 Oreos, crushed

Method:

Place frozen bananas in blender and blend until smooth and creamy

Add vanilla essence and blend until combined

Add crushed Oreos and pulse until combined

Transfer to mug or bowl and serve

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Yup. Just bananas.

NOTE: Keep in mind that this recipe should be enjoyed immediately as the “ice cream” will lose its creamy texture as the bananas thaw