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Vegan Triple Cream Brie

Vegan Triple Cream Brie

Gosh, I love cheese. How can you not? I especially like the soft and creamy kind… like Brie, my favourite cheese ever. And so it makes sense to veganise it, doesn’t it? I honestly believe this Vegan Triple Cream Brie is the closest thing to Brie I’ve made in a long time.

Vegan Triple Cream Brie

For a couple of years now I’ve been experimenting with nut cheeses. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t. When they work, I get so excited that the whole thing is gone before I have the chance to photograph it (hence the lack of vegan cheese blogposts). But when they’ve failed, however, it knocks me down for months…. such as that time I tried to make hazelnut cheese. It was a massive fail. The problem with nut cheese is that the ingredients are expensive. Hazelnut is close to $30 a kilo and raw cashew is about $35 a kilo.

Vegan Triple Cream Brie

But lately I’ve been having more luck in the cheese department. And this vegan double cream Brie was a success in one go. I’ve since made it a few times and have been able to consistently reproduce it.

Vegan Triple Cream Brie

This recipe was inspired by Julie Piatt’s ‘This Cheese is Nuts’ cookbook. I’ve modified the ingredients to simplify the process a little. I definitely recommend you check out the book if you want to explore the world of nut cheeses. Unlike the other non-dairy cheese books I own, it has the least amount of ingredients, so you won’t have too much trouble sourcing most of them.

Vegan Triple Cream Brie

Vegan Triple Cream Brie
 
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Creamy and delicious vegan brie
Author:
Recipe type: Sides
Serves: 2 rounds
Ingredients
  • 2 cups raw cashews
  • 1 probiotic acidophilus capsule
  • 400ml (13.5 ounce) can coconut of milk
  • ¼ cup unrefined coconut oil, plus extra for greasing the mould
  • 1 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • ¾ tsp sea salt
  • You will also need 2 mini spring-form round pans (11cm diameter)
Method
The night before:
  1. Place cashews in 3 cups of filtered water. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  2. Place the can of coconut cream in the refrigerator overnight.
On the day:
  1. Oil the pans with coconut oil (you can also use coconut oil spray).
  2. Rinse and drain the cashews. Transfer to your power blender (I use my beloved Vitamix). Add coconut oil, lemon juice, sea salt and the contents of the probiotic.
  3. Open the can of coconut cream and scoop out the solid cream at the top of the coconut milk. Take ¼ cup of the remaining coconut milk in the can. Transfer the coconut cream and coconut milk into the Vitamix.
  4. Blend on medium speed, using the plunger to distribute the mixture evenly until smooth.
  5. Transfer the mixture into the spring-form round pans. Cover with baking paper cut to fit the pans.
  6. Dehydrate for 24 hours at 35C. You can do this in the oven if your oven can be set to lower temperature, otherwise leave in the oven with the headlight on for 24 hours.
  7. Carefully remove the cheese from the mold using a sharp knife to release the edges. Place in an airtight container in the refrigerator for a day before serving. You can also age the cheese by placing them in a wine fridge for 1 to 3 weeks. Rub fine sea salt over your cheese every few days or so to prevent mold growth.

I recommend eating the brie on crackers or sliced cucumbers. It’s so good that sometimes I just eat it on its own.

P.S. If you make this, I’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment below or find me on Instagram and share your creation. Don’t forget to tag me @passionatelykeren so I won’t miss your post.

Keren x


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Easy Strawberry Jam

Easy Strawberry Jam

I love strawberries! Especially when they’re in season. Sometimes I like adding strawberries to my smoothies and oats, but mostly I like eating them fresh out of the punnet. However, the other week, I made some vegan waffles and I felt like slathering them with some peanut butter and strawberry jam. But the problem is, I don’t have any jam. I’ve stopped buying jams two to three years ago as I find them too sweet for me. Did you know that traditional jam uses 1 cup of sugar per 250g strawberries? That’s insane! So I’ve decided to make my own quick and easy strawberry jam.

YUM! This easy strawberry jam is not only simple to make (you only need four ingredients), but it also tastes soooo fresh. I use raw sugar in this recipe, but you can replace it with your favourite natural sweetener such as Stevia, Norbu or even Xylitol. Nowadays, I don’t mind a bit of sugar here and there, and plus, it’s nowhere near the amount of sugar in storebought jams. Only three (3) tablespoons instead of one cup of sugar used in the traditional jam recipe!

Easy Strawberry Jam

If you ever wanted to make a small volume of jam, without all the fuss of finding jam sugar, pectin, or having to sterilise jars, then this recipe is for you.

Easy Strawberry Jam
 
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Make your own homemade low sugar strawberries using only a handful of ingredients.
Author:
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 150ml
Ingredients
  • 1 punnet (250g) fresh strawberries
  • 3 tablespoons of raw sugar*
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Zest of half lemon
Method
  1. Wash, drain and hull strawberries.
  2. Add to a small pan on medium heat and start mashing the strawberries (use potato masher or fork).
  3. Add sugar and lemon juice into the pan.
  4. Bring to boil and then lower the heat and simmer until most of the liquid has evaporated and the mixture thickens, about 15 minutes.
  5. Transfer into a clean, airtight jar (I got mine from IKEA), let it cool, and store in the fridge for about 2 weeks.
Notes
*You can replace sugar with your favourite sweetener such as Stevia, Norbu or Xylitol

If you make this, I’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment below or find me on Instagram and share your creation. Don’t forget to tag me @passionatelykeren so I won’t miss your post.

Keren x



 

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How to make perfect roast potatoes

Perfect Roast Potatoes

Today I will share with you some of my tips on how to make perfect roast potatoes. You know, the kind that have a deliciously crispy crust and are fabulously fluffy inside.

Let’s get to it.

Tip #1. Start with the right type of potatoes

To make perfect roast potatoes you need to use the right type of potatoes. There are two main types of potatoes:

Floury potatoes

These potatoes have a higher starch content and low moisture content which makes them perfect for roasting and chipping.

and…

Waxy potatoes

These potatoes are higher in moisture and lower in starch content. They’re good at keeping their shape when boiled and therefore are excellent for salads and soup.

You need the floury kinds.

Tips: You can also use the popular all-rounder which often have a medium starch content that sits somewhere in between the waxy and starchy potatoes, such as Desiree or Royal Blue potatoes.

Did you know that most of the potatoes in Australia are grown in South Australia?

Here’s a good website that lists the different varieties of potatoes. Contrary to what you see at the shops, there is much more variety of potatoes beyond ‘washed’ and ‘brushed’ potatoes.

For roasting, my favourite are Coliban, King Edward and Kestrel Potatoes.

Tip #2. Get them rough around the edges 

In order to get that lovely crispy skin which makes roast potatoes so delicious, you can do two things:

  1. Pre-boil the potatoes and cook them until the edges start to get rough, or
  2. Cook them in the oven and shake the pan to rough the surface once the potatoes are cooked.

The oil will gather in the cracks and crevices creating a crispy outer skin. Method number one produce crispier potatoes but it does involve another step (and an extra dirty dish). Number two is a tad simpler, but it takes a bit more time as the potatoes take longer to cook in the oven.

Tip #3. Do not skimp on the oil

If you do, you won’t get that lovely crispy skin you’re lusting after. For 1 kg of potatoes, I won’t use less than two tablespoons of oil. And for the oil, you can use oil you like. I normally use olive oil and coconut oil because I like the flavours.

Tip #4. Do not crowd your pan 

You want a single layer of potatoes on your pan, no more.

If your pan looks a bit overcrowded, use a second pan. You need enough space between each piece of potato to ensure perfect roasting and maximum crispiness.

Tip # 5. Be patient

To make the perfect roast potatoes you need to be patient. It takes time! Between 1.5 to 2 hours to be exact. Some things you just can’t rush!

Here’s my basic roast potato recipe, which makes deliciously crispy potatoes, every time.

I hope you will try them.

  

5.0 from 1 reviews
Perfect roast potatoes
 
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Make deliciously crispy potatoes at home.
Author:
Recipe type: Main
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 kg Coliban potatoes (or any floury potatoes)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • Fresh herbs to flavour (optional)
Method
  1. Cut potatoes into halves or quarters (depending on their size). I like keeping the skin on but feel free to peel them. Wash under running water to remove the starch and then drain.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Transfer potatoes into a large saucepan and then add enough water to cover them.
  3. Cook for about 20 minutes until the potatoes are soft but not mushy. Drain potatoes. Return to the pan and heat for a few minutes to evaporate any remaining water. Then shake the pan briskly to ‘rough up’ the surface of the potatoes.
  4. Pour olive oil into a roasting pan big enough to hold the potatoes in one layer. Add the potatoes to the pan and coat them in the oil.
  5. Place in the oven and cook for 45 minutes. Turn and then cook again for another 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are golden brown and crispy all over.
  6. You can also add one to two tablespoon of fresh herbs such as rosemary or oregano at the end of the baking period to give a nice boost of flavour to your roast potatoes.
  7. Serve immediately.

 

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Nutty Vegan Choc Bites

Today I want to share a super quick and easy raw vegan chocolate recipe I think you will love. It is my “go to” recipe whenever I’m craving chocolate. It is delicious and very satisfying, chewy and tastes a bit like coconut-rough.  There’s something distinctly nostalgic about these beauties.

This recipe only has six ingredients and requires no cooking. You just need to make sure the coconut oil is in liquid form. If the oil is solid, you will need to heat it slightly either using a small pan over the stove or in the microwave.

I’ve made this a few times, already, using a variety of nuts and sweeteners, and they’ve all worked. Just keep in mind that you will get more fudgy texture when you use syrup or dates as opposed to sugar.

If you’re of the experimental mindset then you’ll love the recipe. It is quite foolproof so feel free to experiment with the sweetener/oat/nut component. Perhaps use desiccated coconut or quinoa flakes, instead of oats, or even a mixture of both. Or use cashews, macadamias or walnuts instead of almonds, or a mixture of your favourite nuts. The sky is the limit.

4.0 from 1 reviews
Nutty Vegan Choc Bites
 
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A super easy and quick recipe for deliciously nutty, raw, vegan, chocolate bites.
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 16-20
Ingredients
  • ½ cup cacao powder
  • ½ cup coconut oil, melted
  • ¼ cup of your favourite sweetener (coconut sugar, coconut nectar, maple syrup, dates, stevia, Natvia, Norbu, etc)
  • 1 cup rolled oats*
  • ½ cup raw almonds (or your favourite nuts)
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
Method
  1. Process the oats, almond, sweetener (maple syrup, coconut sugar or dates) and salt in food processor until crumbly.
  2. Mix melted coconut oil with cacao powder. Add to the oat nut mixture and process again until combined.
  3. Scoop chocolate mixture into silicone mini muffin mould and flatten the surface using the back of a teaspoon. Alternatively, you can also pour into a baking pan (if you use a pan, make sure to cut them into squares before cooling).
  4. Pop in the fridge for at least 20 minutes to set.
Notes
You can really creative with this recipe: swap oats with desiccated coconut, rice puffs, or quinoa flakes and use your favourite nuts instead of almond.

If you make this, I’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment below or find me on Instagram and share your creation. Don’t forget to tag me @passionatelykeren so I won’t miss your post.

Keren x

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Vegan Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting

A healthier frosting that’s creamy and delicious, but also good for you. It’s light, refined sugar free, dairy-free, and oh so addictive! Use it to frost carrot cake, muffins or serve with pancakes.

Vegan Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting
 
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Author:
Serves: 2½ cups
Ingredients
  • 1 ½ cups raw cashews, soaked for at least 4 hours or overnight, drain
  • 1 can of full fat coconut milk
  • Juice from 1 lemon
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 tsp pure organic vanilla extract
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
Method
  1. In a food processor or power blender, blend all ingredients on high for a few minutes until creamy, scraping the sides to ensure even blend.
  2. Chill in the fridge to thicken for at least 1 hours before using.
  3. Store in the fridge for up to one week.
Notes
**Prep time does not include the time needed to soak cashews.

If you make this, I’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment below or find me on Instagram and share your creation. Don’t forget to tag me @passionatelykeren so I won’t miss your post.

Keren x

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Steamed Broccolini with Japanese Sesame Ginger Dressing

I thought I’d share with you a really easy dressing which you can use to make your greens taste wonderful.

I was inspired to share this recipe after a recent visit to a lovely Japanese restaurant. They served it cold and it was delish!  I personally like my veggies warm (especially in winter) so I made a warm version and also added some ginger. It took only 10 minutes to prepare (even shorter if you steam the veggies in the microwave).

By the way, I just finished watching What The Health on Netflix. Such an eye-opening! I highly recommend this movie if you need some encouragement to eat more veggies.

I use broccolini in this one but you can use any greens you like. You can also double or triple the batch for the sauce for bigger servings of veggies.

Steamed Broccolini with Japanese Sesame Ginger Dressing
 
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Delicious broccolini with a super simple dressing
Author:
Recipe type: Sides
Serves: 1-2
Ingredients
  • 1 bunch of broccolini
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp shaved or grated fresh ginger
Method
  1. Steam broccoli in a steamer for 7-10 minutes until cooked and the colour changed to bright green.
  2. Lightly toast sesame seeds on a small nonstick pan under medium heat for a few minutes until they just turn golden brown and fragrant. Careful not to overcook them.
  3. Mix sesame oil, soy sauce and ginger (if using).
  4. Drizzle the sauce over steaming hot broccoli and sprinkle with some sesame seeds. Serve.

Hope you like the recipe!

If you make this, I’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment below or find me on Instagram and share your creation. Don’t forget to tag me @passionatelykeren so I won’t miss your post.

Keren x

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My Big News + Crispy Salt & Pepper Tofu recipe

Salt and Pepper Tofu is a classic Chinese dish that Nat and I like to order when we’re eat at Chinese restaurants but also make at home, when we feel like something tasty and crispy.

But first, I have an announcement to make.

I’m engaged!

Well it’s been three months but forgot to mention it here on the blog until now… I’m a bad blogger I know.

We’ve picked a date and the wedding is less than three months time. In fact, at the time this post is written we have 75 days before the wedding…crazy! Nevertheless, we’ve managed to have some the important wedding stuff organised, like my dress, the church, the venue, the photographer etc. Now it’s about organising the small details, which is probably is going to be as big of a job as the big stuff I think.

Crispy Salt & Pepper Tofu recipe
 
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Delicious, crispy salt and pepper tofu that will make your Chinese grandmother proud
Author:
Recipe type: Main
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 300 gram packet of firm tofu
  • ½ cup vegetable or canola oil
  • ½ cup corn starch
  • 2 tbsp tapioca starch
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp ground pepper
  • A ziplock bag
Method
  1. Cut tofu into bite size pieces. Place on two layers or paper towels and top another two layer paper towels (you can also use a kitchen towel). Place a small chopping board on top of the tofu. s
  2. Meanwhile, mix corn starch, tapioca starch, salt and pepper in a ziplock bag.
  3. Heat the oil in a pan to medium-high heat.
  4. Add tofu pieces into the ziplock and shake gently to coat the tofu. Allow to sit for about a minute.
  5. Pan-fry tofu on one side until golden brown, for about 2-3 minutes, and the turn to the other side and cook for another 2 minutes.
  6. Drain on paper towel and keep warm (I normally place cooked tofu in a low temperature oven to keep them warm) while cooking the rest.

Now as far as the salt pepper tofu goes, you won’t believe how easy it is to make. All you need to is just cut, press, crumb, and pan-fry…and voila, a tasty, restaurant-worthy dish.

I use a ziplock to make the crumbing process less messy and so that I can just throw the leftover straight in the freezer. Less washing up = winning. Enjoy!

If you make this, I’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment below and let me know what you think. You can also follow me on Instagram and share your creation with me. Just tag me @passionatelykeren so I won’t miss your post.

Cheers,

Keren x

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Miyoko Schinner’s Glorious Butterless Butter

You guys, this post is long overdue. My number one favourite recipe from Miyoko Schinner’s Homemade Vegan Pantry.

It’s an amazing book and I’ve made a few things from it, but this recipe, Glorious Butterless Butter, has changed my life! It’s surprisingly easy to make once you get your hands on lecithin granules (I found mine at my local IGA), and it’s definitely a game changer for me in the kitchen. I’ve made countless baked goods with it and have slathered it on many pieces of toasts and muffins. It is very, very good.

I highly recommend using soy milk and refined coconut oil for the best result. Here’s the recipe and the video. If you want to take your vegan cooking to the next level, I highly recommend you getting the book. It is incredible.

Glorious Butterless Butter
 
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Author:
Recipe type: Sides
Ingredients
  • 11/2 cup of refined coconut oil*
  • 1 cup soy milk
  • ¼ cup canola oil (or grapeseed oil)
  • 3 of lecithin granules
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp salt
Method
  1. Place all of the ingredients in a blender.
  2. Process at medium speed for about 1 minute until mixture is thick.
  3. Pour into a silicone mould tray.
  4. Let set in the refrigerator for a few hours until hard
  5. It will keep in the refrigerator for up to a month or longer in the freezer.
Notes
* Normal coconut oil will impart a coconut flavour so best to use refined coconut oil.

If you make this, I’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment below or find me on Instagram and share your creation. Don’t forget to tag me @passionatelykeren so I won’t miss your post.

Keren x

 

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How to make vegan mayonaisse

You’re in for a treat. I’m going to show you how to make vegan mayonnaise.

When I first became a vegan I thought I would never be able to have mayonnaise again and that I would have to kiss aioli goodbye. And for a while, that was the case… until I came across some vegan mayonnaise brands at the Cruelty-free Shop, which contain no eggs, but taste just like a regular mayo, like this one and this one.

This discovery completely changed my life. My veggie burger became a lot more exciting and salads were transformed.

Best Vegan Burger

Problem is, these vegan mayonnaises can get a bit expensive at the store.

But it turns out that you can make egg-free mayonnaise at home, easily, using soymilk and oil. This is my go-to recipe for home-made mayo that is unbelievable good. It’s from the Miyoko Schinner cookbook – The Homemade Vegan Pantry (a must have if you want to level up your vegan cooking skills).

The secret to making delicious vegan mayo.

Firstly, you need kala namak – an Indian salt that lends an egg-y flavour to the mayonnaise. You can find it on Amazon, in health food stores or Indian grocery stores. It’s pinkish in colour and it’s a great ingredient to have if you want to lift your game in the vegan-cooking department.

Secondly, you need lecithin to aid the emulsification process. Here’s a bit of kitchen science for you: Mayonnaise is an emulsion (a mixture of two liquids that normally can’t be combined, such oil and water). In mayonnaise, emulsification is achieved by slowly adding oil into soymilk while the blender is running. This mixing process disperses and suspends tiny droplets of oil and milk throughout each other. In it’s normal form, the emulsion is unstable, which is why we have added lecithin. Lecithin is an emulsifier that helps holds the mixture together and prevents it from separating.

If it sounds a bit too much right now, don’t worry, once you start blending, everything will start to make sense.

vegan-mayonnaise

How to make vegan mayonnaise (Makes 1 jar)

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup soy milk
  • 1 tbsp English mustard
  • 12 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • ½ tsp kala namak salt
  • 4 tsp lecithin granules
  • ½ tsp sugar optional
  • ½ – 1 ¼ cup canola oil

Instructions:

1. Add all ingredients except canola oil into a blender and blend on medium high speed.
2. Drizzle canola oil in a very thin stream while the blender is running until it becomes thick and creamy. It may take up to 4-5 minutes for this to happen (and it will happen suddenly) so you have to trust the process. Three words – ‘steady thin stream’.
3. Transfer to a clean glass jar and store in the fridge for up to a month.

Variation – Garlic Mayonnaise

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 2 large garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil

Instructions:

  1. Blend all ingredients together

Did you make this recipe?

Please let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below or share a picture on Instagram and tag me so I can see your creation.

Keren x