Discover how to renew your health with plant-based food

Changing the way you eat could seem harder than it actually is in practice.

That’s why I’ve created Vegan Cuisine. A gathering place for the curious, the converted and those of you ready to dive into a plant-powered lifestyle.

Welcome!

I’m Kate Broughton, lifestyle coach + plant-based educator.IMG_0635 (Small)

If you’re ready to make changes to your life, big or small I’m here to guide you.

So you can be confident taking on new habits, new ways of eating and living.

I help you put your desires into action.

Click here to find out more …

6 Quick & Healthy Desserts Kids will Love

Dessert for kids is not always the icing on the, ahem, cake. Sometimes it is pure strategy.IMG_0249 (Small)

By that I mean a vehicle for extra nutrition that’s delicious and won’t have them climbing the walls at bedtime.

Think chocolate and spinach smoothie, or raspberry chia pudding.

When it comes to new foods kids can be cautious. But throw in dates, banana and thicken with chia seeds and they’re proud to share their special pud with their friends.

Keeping dessert natural cuts down on unwanted sugars, dairy products, colours and other unpronounceable ingredients. Heaven knows bedtimes can be challenging enough without extra stimulants!

Here are a couple of family favourites for busy mums who want to give their kids a healthy alternative to what the supermarket has to offer.

Be sure to serve your new treats in fabulous dessert glasses. Secondhand shops are full of them.

TREAT TIP NUMBER ONE

Turn an after school smoothie into dessert.20150227_093419

Blend non dairy milk, a banana or two, a few leafy greens and a dessertspoon of cocoa/cacoa powder.

Serve with homework.

Pour the leftover into a dessert glass. Mix in 1 tsp chia seeds. Chill.

Serve with chopped fresh fruit, coconut, freeze dried fruit sprinkles.

TREAT TIP NUMBER TWO

When bananas are cheap, buy lots and freeze them. A frozen banana blended makes a great icecream and base for other flavours.1796609_818417114851343_2104498000_n

Peach & banana blended with almond milk, 1 tsp ground flaxseed and a few cashews.

Mix n’ match fruit that’s in season and have fun with presentation.

TREAT TIP NUMBER THREE

Chocolate Avocado Mousse
File this one away for Christmas day. Grandma will have fun picking the ingredients!SAM_1771 (Small)

1-2 large, ripe bananas
1 avocado
¼ cup raw cacao powder
½ tsp ground cinnamon
1 Tbl maple syrup
1 Tbl water
Pinch of cardamom (optional)
Pinch of chilli (optional)
Add all ingredients to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.
Serve in a pretty glass and top with berries.

TREAT TIP NUMBER FOUR
Don’t for a minute think these wee tarts are complicated. I’ve happily whipped them up around dinner time. They’ll be even better after a night in the fridge.SAM_2387 (Small)

Makes about eight shells
1 cup oats
1 cup prunes (you can use dates but you’ll have to soak them)
¼ cup cranberries

Process oats. Add prunes and cranberries. Process until the mixture sticks together.
Press into lined tart tins or similar shape. The lining helps you get them out in one piece. Chill until you need them. Carefully peel back the lining.

Fill with blueberry cream, any of the above creams or simply blend frozen berries and banana. Have fun decorating!

Blueberry cream
1/2 cup chopped raw cashews
1/2 cup blueberries
1/2 cup of coconut water or water
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch of ground cinnamon
Pinch of ground cardamom

TREAT TIP NUMBER FIVE

Peach Raspberry Crisp
5-6 peaches, sliced
Drizzle of maple syrup (apple syrup)
1 cup raspberries

1 cup rolled oats
½ tsp cinnamon
Pinch of salt
2 Tbl maple syrup (apple syrup)
1 Tbl waterraspberry peach crisp (Small)

Preheat oven to 180 C.
Bring the peaches & a little water to boil and simmer until tender ~10 minutes. Remove from heat and drizzle with a little maple/apple syrup to taste. Transfer to a ovenproof dish. Mix in the raspberries.

Combine oats, cinnamon, maple syrup & water together. Sprinkle on top of fruit and bake for 20 minutes. Serve with coconut yoghurt.

TREAT TIP NUMBER SIX
This comes into the category of parental self care!
Reserve for special occasions. The blueberry sauce however can go on anything.1230018_721444621215260_2628154_n

11/4 cups coconut meat
½ cup macadamia nuts
1½ Tbl coconut sugar/agave nectar
1 tsp vanilla extract

Blend until smooth.

Blueberry topping
1 cup blueberries
¼ cup maple syrup,
pinch cardamom,
lemon zest

In a small pot heat all the ingredients just until the berries are hot enough to start bursting. Allow to cool before spooning on top of coconut cream. Garnish with a few fresh berries and mint.

 

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You may also like:

Ice Cream Without The Extras and Why I Don’t Drink Milk

 

How To Make Raw Pasta Sauce

There have been a couple of stand out new dishes that have delighted us this summer and this is one of them. IMG_20150122_195008253 (Small)

Easy. Tasty. And full of fresh readily available nutrients.

The good thing about raw foods is they’re loaded with water, which fills you up. It never ceases to amaze me how satisfying they can be.

First up. Cover the sun dried tomatoes in water and soak for a couple of hours. Avoid the ones packaged in oil. (You can always rinse the oil off for a cleaner meal.)

You will need:

1.5 cups sun-dried tomatoes, soaked in just enough water to cover
4 cups fresh tomatoes
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp apple or maple syrup
Green olives ~ half cup
Black olives (I like loads of both)
1 cup fresh basil
1 Tbl tamari

Blend:

1.5 cups sun-dried tomatoes & soak waterpasta marinara (Small)
2 cups fresh tomatoes
Garlic
Apple syrup

Pour into a large bowl and add:

Rest of fresh tomatoes, chopped
Green olives, sliced
Black olives whole
Basil, sliced
Tamari.

Gently stir in zucchini noodles.

Adapted from Brenden Brazier’s Thrive Foods cookbook.

You may also like Zucchini Noodles with Alfredo Sauce.

Vegetable steam-through

Throwing brown rice or quinoa in the rice cooker first thing can be a great basis for nutritious throw-together meals for later in the day.20150210_132415

It could turn into anything: salad, a vege steam-through or form the basis for burgers.

In any case it feels good to have the foundation of a dish on the boil. I love nothing more than having dinner (or at least part of it) sorted by the end of breakfast.

Since I was under siege by my scallopini patch, a vegetable steam-through won out.20150210_132650

By the way, a steam-through is my version of a stir fry. Only healthier. It’s infinitely flexible in a unfussy mid-week kinda way. And is delicious.

It goes something like this.

1 onion, chopped
Half vege stock cube (Rapunzel)
1 scallopini, sliced
Handful cherry tomatoes
Sprigs of fresh thyme, oregano, rosemary
1 large garlic clove, pressed
Sprinkle of dried chilli flakes (optional)
Tamari
Salt & pepper
Toasted pumpkin seeds

To a large pan add 1 cup of water, stock cube, onion & scallopini. Bring to the boil & simmer.
Add cherry tomatoes, fresh herbs & garlic.
Cover and cook over low heat for ten minutes until cooked. Add a splash more water if sticking.
When cooked add about half cup cooked brown rice and toss with tamari and seasonings.

Serve with fresh tomatoes & toasted pumpkin seeds.

Zucchinis, red peppers & aubergines will all work beautifully. And a dollop of cashew cream stirred in the end. Divine.

You may also like to read about why I cook without oil

A Gift of Words

This year, rather than choosing one word to be my guiding light for the year ahead, I’m choosing four.

Or rather they’ve chosen me.

They’ve taken up residence in my heart. And true to their metaphor they’re shining bright.IMG_20150127_074838030 (Small)

I’m going to take you on a journey.

A Christmas journey.

Down country roads lined with summer grasses. Through winding valleys where the sun beats down making the whole world smell like summers when you were a kid.

Past the two-classroom school, past where the old shop used to be, there’s a church.

The Church of the Good Shepherd. A stained glass window tells it’s story. Farming families live here. The coast is close by.

Christmas brings me back every couple of years to sing shoulder-to-shoulder with folk I grew up with. To say “Hi” to my childhood mate buried outside.

This Christmas day we learnt about four candles. Four words.

These candles are lit in the month leading up to Christmas. They are the candles of Advent.

HOPE
The first candle is the candle of hope. This candle is lit in the darkest corner of the church. There is always hope. We must never lose this! Express your longing for peace, wellbeing and healing, and keep this candle burning in your darkest places.

Have hope.

PEACE
The second candle is the candle of peace. Take a moment and feel your shoulders soften in the presence of peace. It can seem elusive in a world gone mad. Even when disharmony reigns there is always a way to peace.

Seek peace.

JOY
With hope and peace in our hearts we can make joy. So often joy is stifled under the weight of obligation. The ‘shoulds’ the ‘have tos’. A measure of success is how joyful you feel. Not how clean your house is, or how rich you are. Joy is all around us in the laughter of children, the colours of sunset, music and togetherness. Sometimes it comes easily like a wellspring from deep within us. But it’s also a choice. An attitude. One that needs exercising.

Make joy.

LOVE
The fourth candle is that of love. When in doubt. Love more. When in pain. Love more. By practising love we can make our lives more fulfilling, peaceful and loving.

Learn from love.IMG_20150127_075801829 (Small)

With all of mine to you. Have the best year yet.

Love Kate

PS Sprinkle these words on your day … your year.

Raw Zucchini Noodles with Alfreda Sauce

The simplicity of this dish suits the relaxed nature of picking your summer vegetables from the garden and throwing together something easy for lunch or dinner.

Just be sure to soak your cashews in the morning.zucchini noodles in alfreda sauce (Small)

Adjust the combo of vegetables to suit your taste. You can pretty much go anywhere with this dish.

I like to add strips of steamed kale. Thin sliced red capsicum or steamed/raw broccoli make nice additions also. zucc noodles (Small)

2 large zucchinis
Bunch cavelo nero or other kale
Cherry tomatoes
Fresh basil leaves

1 cup cashews, soaked for at least 2 hours
1 Tbl lemon juice
2 tsp tamari
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbl nutritional yeast
½ tsp apple cider vinegar
1-1½ cups filtered water
Pinch cayenne
Salt & pepper

  • Finely slice zucchinis into long strips using a serrated peeler, mandolin, spiraliser or knife.
  • Slice long strips of kale and steam over boiling water for a few minutes.
  • Rinse cashews well. Add to blender with other ingredients.
  • Blend until smooth.
  • Assemble noodles, kale and sauce together with cherry tomatoes, fresh basil and cracked pepper.

And for all those extra zucchinis in the garden, you may also like this gluten free zucchini fritter recipe.

 

 

 

The best three ingredients you'll ever combine

Correction.

The best three ingredients for a sweet you’ll ever combine.

This Walnut Sauce has truly got the award for the savoury version.

choc balls

 

You will also like these:

Chocolate coated cookie dough truffles

oh and probably this brownie

Sugar-free sweet potato brownie

 

 

 

Vegan Christmas Cake

This cake is a good mix of ‘easy’ + ‘Xmas-spice-fruity combo’.

And with molasses and not too much sugar I call it health food. Actually I’ve been known to call it breakfast!IMG_0199 (Small)

It’s not a long lasting cake but never needs to be!

675 g mixed fruit
450 ml water
150 ml oil (rice bran)
350 g wholemeal self-raising flour
1 Tbl molasses
1 lemon, zested
2 tsp ground mixed spice
75 g raw brown sugar
3 Tbl sherry or rum

  • Heat the oven 150. 
  • Grease and line a round cake tin. 
  • Mix all the ingredients, except the sherry and beat well until evenly mixed. 
  • Bake for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours until risen and firm to touch. 
  • Allow to cool slightly in the tin, then spoon the sherry over the top and leave in the tin until completely cold. 

You may also like:

Fruit loaf

Rhubarb cake

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The best kale soup. Ever.

At the mere hint of rain I go running for my soup pot. And if I have a bunch of cavelo nero (the long dark kale) this sagey, garlicky, beany soup from my old battered Sundays At Moosewood’s Restaurant cookbook is my number one choice. IMG_0196 (Small)

This is a rustic, hearty meal-in-one kinda soup. Thickened with cornmeal, full of beans and kale, it has all your nutrient groups covered.

Plus it’s got a really cool name that goes well with wild weather and red wine!

IncavolataIMG_0195 (Small)

1 bunch of de-stemed, rough chopped kale
4 large garlic cloves, minced
2 cans of white beans (butter or cannellini), rinsed & drained
6 cups vegetable stock or water
3 Tbl tomato paste
6 large sage leaves (½ tsp dried)
1 tsp salt
Pepper
½ cup fine cornmeal (polenta)

  • Soak the leaves of the prepared kale in a bowl of cold water while you preare the soup.
  • Steam saute the garlic in ½ cup of stock
  • Blend about half the beans and stock with tomato paste and sage.
  • Stir into garlic adding the rest of the beans and stock.
  • Drain the kale and mix into soup. Simmer for ½ hour.
  • Mix the cornmeal with 2 Tbl stock from the pot or water. 
  • Pour slowly into the soup stirring. 
  • Simmer for another 10 minutes on low heat, stirring occasionally.
  • Adjust seasonings.
  • Serve topped with vegan parmesan. The recipe is here.

IMG_0198 (Small)You may also like:

Summer soup

How to make miso soup

PS: You want to know how to make the fastest vege stock? Bring to the boil a pot of celery leaves, leeks leaves and water. Simmer for a couple of minutes. Done.

 

Seven Steps To A Frazzle-Free Xmas

_MG_0076 (Small)

Is your calender a mass of end-of-year parties, pot lucks and prize-givings? And your to-do list looks like it’s on steroids!

Itʼs a hard time of year to keep your tinsel on straight.

But with a bit of planning and good self care, you can side step the mayhem and sail smoothly and happily towards the end of the year.

Here are 7 things that will save you crying into your expensive cacao chocolate as you coat your truffles.

ONE.

Say no. You donʼt have to go to everything youʼre invited to.

Be mindful of your energy. Itʼs not as limitless as your second glass of Pinot Gris will have you think.

Endless parties and out-of-the-ordinary amounts of food, wine and late nights can deplete your energy and add to your physical and emotional stress. This in turn compromises your immune system and by the time you roll out your beach towel youʼre fighting a cold or another inopportune infection.

If an invitation doesnʼt invoke a “hell yes!” then donʼt go.

Trust your intuition on this one.

TWO.

Master a BIG salad and take it everywhere. Many casual summer events require you to take food. Keep it simple and perfect one recipe that you love. If thereʼs no other plant-based dishes on the table your salad will save you and keep you far away from the sausage rolls.

Try this one with new potatoes, cucumber and spicy chickpeas

Or these striking quinoa lettuce cups

THREE.

Keep it green. Starting the day with alkalising green juices and smoothies is the perfect antidote to the seasonʼs over indulgences. It gets you off to a healthy start and lays a good foundation for the rest of the day.

Make double so you can keep your energy humming through the three oʼclock energy lag.

FOUR.

Shop locally. I love this option. Supporting the small businesses and artisans around you creates the goodwill Xmas is all about. And youʼre bound to come away with more interesting gifts. The frenetic energy of towns and cities at this time of year affects us all. Thereʼs a collective overload happening everywhere and it’s possible youʼre picking up on more than your own stress.

Avoid the crowds, corporations and bad Christmas music. Shop close to home.9FGrYgOMQOetXBZZs3uA__MG_0328 (Small)

FIVE.

Keep meals light and plant-based. In all honesty the meals of old used to leave me feeling like a cement mixer. No offence to the pavlova Mum but the lashings of cream + sugar were the final kicker.

A beautiful pig or not so beautiful turkey does not have to forgo itʼs life for a yearly ritual that is all about love.

Woo your friends and family with the best the season has to offer: new potatoes, asaragus, avocados, vine-ripened tomatoes, baby zucchini. You get the picture.

And when in doubt make these chocolate truffles.

SIX.

If you are frazzled you can bet your kids are more so. Let’s face it they’re already tired. It’s the end of a big long year for them whatever age.

Add parties, more sugar than usual, late nights, long car trips, high excitement and people they’re not used to and well, it’s hard for them to cope.

Factor in time just for them and fill up their emotional tank. Stuff in some early nights and keep food as real as you can.

And if they do melt down stay connected and stick to your parenting values. This is not the time for outdated advice from Aunt Margaret. Do it your way.

SEVEN.

Be grateful. Most of us get to celebrate with those we love. Weʼre lucky. So incredibly lucky. We have food, shelter and more than we need. We can freely sing praises and rejoice. We can be generous, help others and make memories.

Most of all. Be grateful for who you are. Because youʼre amazing.

Christmas blessings

Love Kate  xx