If you are looking for a healthy start to the year for the whole family, what better way than getting some extra veggies on the plate. We ask Anna from @annasfamilykitchen to share some of her favourite vegan recipes. Whilst ‘Veganuary’ may a stretch too far for many of us (or maybe not!) these quick, tried and tested recipes are sure to be a massive hit even with your most ardent of carnivores!
So cheap and easy to make, Tarka Dal makes a great side dish or serve it with rice and/or Indian bread to make a hearty meal. I’ve been making Dal for years and each time I make it I tweak the recipe in an attempt to achieve the toasted garlic flavour I associate with the Tarka Dal I order in a local restaurant. I should have asked them sooner what their secret was! It turns out I have been missing out the Tarka stage! That is roasting slithers of garlic and cumin seeds in butter then drizzling over the top at the end. It’s a game changer! The cheats chapattis you see here are actually tortilla wraps, warmed, wiped with butter and sprinkled with Nigella Seeds.
INGREDIENTS for 4:-
250g red lentils
1 onion chopped
6 garlic cloves peeled and thinly sliced
5 small plum tomatoes quartered
1/2 tsp Turmeric
1 tsp ground Cumin
1 tsp Coriander
1/2 tsp salt
500ml stock (veg or chicken)
1 tsp Garam Masala
1-2 red chillis, chopped
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 tbsp butter (coconut oil if Vegan)
Fresh coriander leaves to serve
Soften the onion in a lug of oil for 10 minutes. Add half of the garlic, the chilli and all the dried spices apart from the Garam Masala and Cumin Seeds.
Give the pan a stir then add the lentils and tomatoes. Cover with the stock and simmer for 30 minutes.
Stir in the Garam Masala.
For the Tarka melt the butter in a frying pan and add the cumin seeds and remaining garlic slices. The garlic will colour quickly.
Take the pan off the heat as soon as the garlic slices start to go brown. Drizzle the Tarka over the Dal and serve.
Spinach Pesto Pasta with Slow Cooked Tomatoes & Broccoli
All of your five a day in one bowl of pasta! The slow cooked tomatoes are worth cooking in a large batch – kept covered in the fridge they’ll liven up salads and sarnies. Veggie-lergic children won’t notice the spinach hidden in the pesto and you could blitz in the broccoli too if it helps. This dish is also packed with protein thanks to the nuts. Served hot or cold, black olives and pine nuts are an optional
INGREDIENTS for 4:-
300g cherry tomatoes halved
1 garlic clove
300g tender stem
Toasted pine nuts, olives & fresh basil to finish
For the pesto:-
75g fresh basil leaves
100g fresh spinach
200g Cashews or pinenuts
100ml Olive oil
Juice of a lemon
2 garlic cloves
100g vegan cheese
Gently mix together the tomatoes, olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic in a bowl. Tip out into one single layer on a baking tray and cook for 1 hour at 130 fan.
Cook the pasta according to packet instructions. For the final 3 minutes add the tender stem. Drain.
Blitz all the pesto ingredients in a blender.
Stir the pesto through the pasta and broccoli. Add the tomatoes, olives and pine nuts. Serve with fresh basil leaves.
Vegan Black Bean Chilli with Avocado, Lime and Tomato Salsa
Packed with protein and containing 4 of your 5 a day, this whole dish takes 5 minutes to prep and 15 minutes to cook. Make a double batch of the chilli – it’s brilliantly versatile. Serve it in a tortilla wrap, with rice or on top of a baked sweet potato.
INGREDIENTS for 4:-
1 tbsp olive oil
3 red peppers sliced
1 red onion chopped
3 garlic cloves crushed
800g (2 cans) black beans, drained
2 tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
½ tsp smoked paprika
4 tsp Chipotle Paste
Salt and Pepper
For the Salsa:
1 avocado chopped
100g cherry tomatoes roughly chopped
Juice of 2 limes
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
Prepare your salsa by combining all the ingredients in a bowl with a pinch of salt.
Sauté the onion for 5 minutes before adding the garlic and peppers.
Colour for 2-3 minutes before adding the balsamic vinegar. Let it bubble for a few seconds then add the black beans, paprika, chipotle paste and passata.
Add ½ tsp Maldon salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Simmer for 15 minutes and serve with rice and your salsa.