Lentil & Mushroom Shepherd’s Pie

This one was a real treat to eat, because as a vegan, it can be difficult to find pastry dishes when eating out. Particularly when living in a small city of 365,000 or so people where veganism, though on the rise, isn’t as established as it is in larger cities. So if you love eating pies, give this recipe a go! It’s delicious and easy, which is a win-win in my books!

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Serves: 4

Prep Time: 10

Cooking Time:

Ingredients:

  • 6-8 potatoes
  • 1 tablespoon margarine
  • 1/2 cup rice milk or other plant based milk
  • salt to taste
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 onion
  • 5 cloves of garlic
  • 12 button mushrooms
  • 2 cans of drained lentils or 2 cups of fresh lentils (be sure to soak them first)
  • 2 tablespoons of red wine
  • 1 tablespoon of soy sauce or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos
  • 1 teaspoon of dry thyme
  • 3 tablespoons of buckwheat flour
  • 200 g of baby spinach
  • pepper to taste
  • spices to taste (e.g. cumin)
  • 1 cup of rice bread crumbs

Instructions:

  1. Wash the potatoes and place them in a pot. Fill the pot with water until the potatoes are covered. Boil the water and cook until the potatoes are soft. Once they are soft enough to comfortably stick a fork in them, drain the water and place potatoes in to a large mixing bowl.
  2. Add the margarine and the rice milk and mash them until the mixture is fluffy. Add more milk if the consistency is still too thick.
  3. Preheat the oven to 200°C and chop the onion. Heat the olive oil in a pan and saute then onions until they are translucent. Add the chopped garlic and diced mushroom and continue to saute until the onion and mushroom have released all their moisture (usually demonstrated by shrinking).
  4. Add the lentils and bring to a simmer. Stir in the wine, soy sauce/Braggs, spices (we used cumin), thyme, salt and pepper. Add the buckwheat flour and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Add the spinach and cook until slightly wilted and then remove the mixture from the heat.
  6. Lightly oil a pie dish and evenly scatter the rice bread crumbs over the bottom. Ensure there is enough to cover the base without it being too thick, half a cm in depth should be plenty.
  7. Evenly pour the lentil and mushroom mixture over the top and then cover with the potatoes. If you have too much mashed potato mixture, you can use the rest of it as a side dish.
  8. Bake for 30 minutes, or until the potatoes begin to go brown and appear crusty like that of a pie.
  9. Allow to cool and then cut in to slices or wedges, depending on the shape of your dish.
  10. ENJOY!

Fun Fact:

  • This recipe is naturally gluten free!
  • 1 cup of cooked lentils contains 18 g of protein and 6.6 mg of iron.
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Buckwheat Pancakes with Mixed Berry Compote

Some mornings call for lush breakfasts, don’t they?  Christmas Day was one of those days, as we were able to enjoy a day off together to relax and experiment with delicious vegan recipes. Here’s how we made these!

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Serves: 2

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cooking Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of buckwheat flour
  • 1 tablespoon of LSA (linseed, sunflower and almond) meal
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon of cinnamon
  • 2 cups of rice milk (can also use soy, almond or other plant based milk)
  • 2 cups of mixed berries
  • 1/2 cup of coconut nectar
  • So Good Choc Almond ice-cream as desired
  • Vegetable oil or margarine for the pan

Instructions:

  1. Put the mixed berries and 1/4 cup of coconut nectar in to a pot and simmer until the berries have softened and taken on a jam like consistency. This could take up to 15 minutes. Keep and eye on it and stir every couple of minutes to check the consistency. Once the berries have broken down a little, take it off the heat and put it aside for later.
  2. Whilst the berries are simmering, place all the dry ingredients (the flour, LSA, baking powder and cinnamon) in to a bowl. Mix it all together by slowly adding the rice milk. Take notice of the batter as you keep introducing the rice milk. Too much milk will make the batter too runny and will result in thin, flat pancakes and too little batter will make them too thick and difficult to cook all the way through.
  3. Once you are satisfied with the batter’s consistency, put it aside and place some oil in the pan. You may not even need oil if you have a nice, non-stick pan. Medium heat is ideal. If the pan is too hot, the pancakes will be crisp or burnt on the outside and uncooked on the inside so adjust the heat if need be. Once it’s heated, pour some batter in to the pan. It should spread in to a nice circle shape.
  4. Cook the first side until you start seeing little bubbles forming in the pancake. Once there a dozen or so, flip it over and cook the other side. Keep going until all your batter is finished!
  5. To serve, place your pancakes on a plate. Put a scoop of ice-cream on top of the pancakes and then place your mixed berry compote on top. Lastly, drizzle your pancakes with coconut nectar and…
  6. ENJOY!

Fun Fact:

  • If you want a protein packed meal, put a couple of servings of your favorite plant based protein powder in to the mixture.
  • These pancakes are naturally gluten free.
  • You can use other syrups such as agave nectar or the more traditional pure maple syrup.
  • Have fun experimenting with other ingredients such as banana as an egg replacement or for flavor, dark chocolate chips, berries in the mixture as opposed to on top… your imagination is the limit!