Mushroom Gravy

This gravy (like most gravy) doesn’t look all that appetizing but believe me you will be going back for more because it’s seriously good! This recipe is for a larger quantity but can easily be scaled back if you don’t need this much. It doesn’t matter how much we make, we never have any leftovers, it’s damn delicious! Pictured here atop “smashed”, roast veggies.

 

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Ingredients:

  • 2-4 Mushrooms (up to 100g)
  • 1 Small Onion
  • 2 Cloves of Garlic
  • 1 Spring of Fresh Rosemary (or 2 tsp Dried Rosemary)
  • 200-300g Soy Milk
  • 50g Water (Optional if you want to bulk up the amount of gravy you make)
  • 20g Stock
  • 30g Spelt or Wheat Flour

 

Method:

– Roughly chop mushrooms and add then to the thermomix along with the onion, garlic and rosemary.

– Turbo until blitzed and then add a splash of oil and cook on 100 degrees for 4 mins.

– Add remaining ingredients and and combine on speed 5 for 10 seconds.

– Cook on speed 2, 90 degrees for 5 mins.

Mushroom Gravy

Vegan Brownie Cake

This recipe started off more like a mud cake but we have adapted it so that it has more of a brownie consistency. People are always impressed when you can make a really good cake that is vegan. There is a misconception that eggs are needed for binding but this one will prove them wrong! We don’t have any great pics just yet but we make this so often that we’ll be sure to update this post when we take some more photos.

If you grind your own nut meal in the thermomix then feel free to make the meal for this recipe a little bit chunky – it will add a great texture to your brownie cake!

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Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup Rapadura or Sugar
  • 125g Vegan Margarine (we use nutellex), or butter or neutral oil
  • 1/2 Cacao Powder
  • 1/2 Cup Hot Water
  • 1 Cup Soy Milk + 1 Tsp Vinegar or Lemon Juice
  • 1 Cup Spelt or Wheat Flour
  • 1 Cup Almond Meal (or any other nut meal)
  • 1 Tsp Baking Powder
  • 1 Tsp Baking Soda

 

Method:

– Preheat oven to 180 degrees C (if you have a”slow” oven then turn up the temperature to 190). Grease a large cake pan or line with baking paper.

Add rapadura and margarine/oil to the thermomix bowl and combine on speed 6 for 10 seconds.

– Add the soy milk + vinegar to the thermomix and allow it to curdle while you gather the remaining ingredients (and boil the kettle for the hot water).

– Add the remaining ingredients and combine on speed 4 for 30 seconds.

– Pour into your prepared cake tin and bake until the cake feels firm and an inserted knife comes out looking like a brownie ­čÖé around 35 minutes.

 

If the cake is a little undercooked it will set and have a very gooey centre and if it is a little overcooked it will have more of a cake consistency. Practice makes perfect with this one!

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Masterchef. What do you reckon?

I am NOT the reality TV type. I have never watched a home renovation/makeover show or gotten into the “got talent” type thing, BUT last year I sort of got stuck into Masterchef and this year it’s got me again!

It all started when I read a tweet about thermomixes being used on the show. I thought I would check out the particular episode that featured the thermo and I just got sucked in from there. And I definitely am a sucker.

At first I watched it just because of my curiosity around what can be achieved with food. I still judged it quite harshly, seeing it as an experiment about pushing people to their limits and seeing what they can do under extreme pressure then adding in some Big Brother-esque personality clashes for entertainment. I figured it was probably rigged by the 3 fat guys that ate all the food and as you might have guessed I had a few problems with the ingredients used on the show too.

BUT, the more I watched, the more I grew to appreciate what the show was offering viewers – a relationship with food. Let’s face it, the show uses ALOT of animal products, but there is complete transparency about the origins of the food and how it is processed, something which I appreciate in regard to all food but especially with animal products.

The show is not afraid to document how whole animals are divided into specific cuts and how the animals are raised and then processed. Some viewers (and even contestants) have struggled to watch this “graphic” food preparation and I think that’s a good thing. So many people mindlessly chow down on meat with very little concern or awareness for what it actually is. Awareness is a good thing, even if it’s difficult to swallow. It allows us to appreciate the journey that our food has been on to reach us, whether we choose to eat meat/dairy or not.

The other thing I think that masterchef offers its viewers is a passion for creating amazing food. Even though there’s alot of meat and dairy used in the show, there are also a stack of veggies, fruits, grains, legumes and herbs. Many of the accompaniments are vegan or could easily be converted. The plant-based components of each dish have been created with excitement and enthusiasm – AWESOME!

The other thing that I found exciting about last year’s competition is that the top pick contestants tipped to win got booted in the final rounds and the prize went to the underdog! Legendary! Maybe it isn’t rigged after all.

Even though I probably wouldn’t eat many of the dishes made on the show and I don’t necessarily agree with many of the ingredients, I am still curious about how it’s done. I am not disillusioned about animal products being a major part of a conventional diet and so I can accept it for what it is, even though I wouldn’t choose it for myself.

And I must say, I do get a kick out of seeing a bit of Thermomix fame! What about you? Are you into it?

 

Orange & Thyme Sticky Sauce

This sauce can be used in stir-fries, as a dipping sauce, atop cooked veggies or to glaze baked tofu or meat. It’s also a good way to use up excess oranges that you thought you would get around to running through the juicer (not in this wintery weather).

We have thyme growing in a pot near the kitchen so it’s easy for us to use the fresh stuff but dried thyme is fine for this recipe. In fact, if you don’t have any, swap it for rosemary or basil or just leave it out all together! Whatevs!

orangesauce

 

Ingredients:

  • 450-500g Fresh Orange Juice
  • 1 tsp Thyme
  • 1 Medium Onion
  • 1-2 Clove of Garlic
  • 40g Rapadura
  • 1 tsp Salt

 

Method:

– Juice oranges and weigh. Set aside in a bowl.

– Place onion & garlic in TM bowl and turbo until chopped. Cook on 100 degrees, speed soft for 3 mins.

– Add remaining ingredients and cook on varoma temp, speed 2 for 15 mins. If the sauce has not reduce enough for you then cook for a few more minutes.

Cashew-Coconut-Vanilla Cream

This dairy free cream will set you free (from dairy!) and set nice and firm too ­čśŤ ┬áSeriously, if the prep required for this one is turning you off, please give it a shot. It’s actually really easy! With some recipes you can skip the soaking of the nuts if you wish but NOT THIS ONE. Soak your cashews for 4-12 hours. Here’s what I do, the night before I make this, I put the coconut cream in the fridge and soak the cashews. In the morning I drain and rinse the cashews, grab the can out of the fridge and I’m ready to go.

Once made, this cream will set in the fridge but it takes at least 2 hours. If you want this cream to be reliably firm then make it before you need it and chuck it in the fridge. Then you can scoop it onto desserts or even get your dairy-free kicks by squeezing it through a piping bag for some delicious icing or decoration.

Please don’t waste the coconut water/milk that will be left over from this recipe. Use it in a curry, smoothie or soup!

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Ingredients:

  • 1 Can of Coconut Cream (chilled)
  • 1 Cup of Cashews (soaked for at least 4 hours)
  • 1 Tsp Vanilla Paste/Extract
  • 1 Tbs Agave Syrup

 

Method: 

– Open coconut cream can and using a spoon (or pouring skills), scoop off the cream down to the level where is has separated into water. Put the cream directly into the Thermomix bowl and retain the water for another recipe.

– Add remaining ingredients and slowly turn up to speed 7 for around 20 seconds.

– Scrape down lid and sides and slowly turn up to speed 8 for 30-60seconds, until smooth.

cashewcream

 

Slackers Veggie Stock

Thermomixers are probably familiar with the veggie stock concentrate recipe from the Every Day Cookbook which is great – but ours is heaps easier – perfect for slackers! Why? Because there are no set ingredients. We encourage you to keep and freeze your vegetable and herb scraps that are edible and flavoursome but that would otherwise be discarded. Here are some examples:

  • Celery leaves & offcuts
  • Spinach & Kale stalks
  • Broccoli stalks
  • Cauliflower stalks & leaves
  • Coriander roots & stems
  • Parsley stems
  • Carrot tops

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You can get creative with what you keep and try out for your stock. Doing it this way means that each batch is slightly different which I really enjoy. You can also add whole veggies & herbs too, not just the offcuts. We find that it is a great way to use up the parts of the plant that would normally go into the compost or the garbage, in fact our freezer is often overflowing with scraps that we make up a huge batch of stock and end up giving some away! It’s a great present for people that don’t have thermomixes.

It can be used in soups, sauces, curries, casseroles, marinades, tagines, risottos or just about any dish you can think of. It’s also pretty good spread on toast or mixed into guacamole and other dips! It can also add flavour to veggies, grains or legumes that are being steamed or boiled. Seriously, you need to have some of this around, particularly if you’re planning on making vegetarian food and/or yeast free food. Most stock cubes & powders contain yeast & sugar. This stock is a perfect wholefood alternative.

Once you have 800 grams or more of stock ingredients, you are ready to go!

Ingredients:

  • 800g-1400g of Veggie & Herb offcuts
  • 130g Salt
  • 50g Oil of your choice

 

Method:

– Pull your ingredients (800g-1400g) out of the freezer and let them thaw if you have time.

– Add half of your ingredients to the bowl and turbo for a few seconds┬á(until chopped).

– Add the other half and turbo again.

– Add the oil and salt and cook on aroma temp for 25 mins, speed 2.

– Blend on speed 6 for 15 seconds.

– Store in glass jars in the fridge!

 

 

Raw Chocolate Mousse

We have a few variations of this recipe. This is our cold weather (and quiet) version. Sometimes we don’t want to do anything too loud in the Thermomix after our daughter has gone to bed, particularly if we’d had a hard time getting her to sleep, and let’s face it, the Thermomix is anything but quiet! Therefore, we don’t use anything frozen in this recipe. Your avocados and bananas can be chilled if you prefer but we use them at room temperature in cold weather.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Large Avocados
  • 1 Large Banana
  • 25-30g Cacao Powder
  • 2-4 Dates

 

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Method:

– Place all ingredients in the Thermomix and mix on speed 6 for 20 seconds. Serve topped with your favorite crunchy topping like pepitas, goji berries or cacao nibs. Drizzle with some additional honey or agave if desired.

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Tomato & Celery Soup

We buy tomatoes in bulk from time to time so that Bob can make sauce, chutney and yummy tomato paste. It also means that I get to make my absolute favourite – tomato soup!

Here’s a delicious variation with celery!!

Ingredients:

  • 2 Cloves of Garlic
  • 1 Medium Onion
  • 600-700g Tomatoes
  • 3 Large Celery Stalks including leaves (around 300g)
  • 600g Water
  • 5g Tamari
  • 2 tbs Veggie Stock Concentrate (or 1 stock cube)

 

Method:

– Add onion, garlic & tomatoes to Thermomix and turbo for 3-4 seconds.

– Add remaining ingredients and turbo again for 3-4 seconds.

– Cook at 100 degrees, speed 1 for 12 minutes.

– Turn dial up to speed 9 or 10 until desired consistency is reached. Serve with fresh herbs.

tomatocelerysoup

 

Green Chocolate Shake (Advanced)

This is one for seasoned greenies. If you are new to green smoothies start here. If you know what you’re doing and have a love of kale then continue…

It doesn’t look pretty but this smoothie will give you a cacao fix at the same time as packing in a stack of greens. It is essential that your banana is frozen for this one. You might even want to toss in a couple of ice cubes too. Drink it cold. If it warms up too much it can become unpleasant so just slam it down. That’s what I do!

This is quite a thick drink, add more water if you want it to be more of a smoothie consistency.

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Ingredients:

  • 50g Kale (2-3 large leaves)
  • 40g Coconut Meat
  • 15g Cacao Powder
  • 20g Pepitas
  • 1 Frozen Banana
  • 200g Water (for a thinner consistency add more water)
  • 1 tbs / 10g Honey (or preferred sweetener)

Method:

– Add all ingredients to the thermomix in the order listed above and blend on speed 8 (or higher) for 1 minute.

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Millet in the Thermomix

Millet is a hugely versatile gluten free grain. It is also a great low taste alternative to quinoa. It can used in place of rice in all sort of savory dishes. We also use it often in porridge and because it is starchy, it is absolutely perfect in veggie patties. Here’s some instructions on cooking it in the Thermomix.

Ingredients:

  • 300g Hulled Millet (you can use less than this but 300g is the maximum that will fit once cooked)
  • 1100g Water

 

Method:

– Place rice basket in Thermomix and add up to 300g of Millet and 1100g Water. Cook on Varoma temp for 25 minutes, speed 3.

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