5 Awesome family-friendly vegan lock-down recipes

“One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.”
Virginia Woolf

Working from home these past couple weeks has been, well… different.

At this point we’ve gotten used to working next to one another on the dining room table (HUGE shout out to my wife for putting up with me), we’ve blasted through a lot of movies across Disney+, Netflix and Amazon Prime (we’re well stocked) but most importantly… we’ve cooked.

Now this blog was never intended to be a food-y cook-y recipe blog by any means, stay tuned there because there is something much more exciting in the works in that arena!!!

Excited Minions GIF

However there have been some recipes that have just been an absolute blessing to have in these times. The ingredients for them are reasonably simple, can be substituted fairly easily where necessary and they are thoroughly nourishing (and normally last us a good period of time too!)

  1. Making Thyme For Health – Chickpea Frittata

I really enjoy this frittata, we use the base recipe for the “egg” replacement mixture and it’s delicious – a variation we make in our house though involves cooking off 2 sweet potatoes in salt, pepper, oil and some smoked paprika, then adding red bell pepper, and Violife Vegan ‘Feta’, and instead of a skillet, using a baking dish. Honestly discovering this recipe was one of the best finds I ever made – yum yum yum!

Good for: Saturday or Sunday mornings as it is easily thrown together, and the recipe is easily doubled so you can save the cold leftovers (which are also great) for a quick lunch/brunch later in the week

2. The Happy Pear – (Oil Free) Vegan Enchiladas

This one is self-explanatory. It’s wonderful, warming, quick, easy and delicious and if you don’t already follow the Happy Pear where have you been??? Check this one out because we are already looking forward to making it again. We didn’t have sweetcorn so we subbed in Kidney Beans and we added nutritional yeast to the cashew ‘cheese’ for an extra cheesy recipe 😉

Good for: A very quick and healthy midweek dinner, fed 3 but could easily feed 4 or even 5!

3. Amuse Your Bouche – Vegan Slow Cooker Tagine

This combination of Sweet Potato and Chickpeas should be illegal, it tastes JUST SO DARN GOOD. I have nothing else to add other than dig out your slow cooker and get going!

Good for: Any weekday dinner, the amount made will easily server 4 over two nights if served with rice or couscous etc. especially handy because you prep it and leave it in the slow cooker whilst you work. Minimum hassle.

4. Buddha Bowls! (Examples here)

Ok this one is a cop out. Buddha bowls are by far the easiest thing to make on this list because you basically throw a bunch of things in a bowl and it’s nourishing, delicious and a bit of fun! The basic “formula” for a Buddha bowl though can be seen here on Eating Well.

Good for: Fast, healthy meals that can be changed up or perfected to your taste. There are so many permutations that there’s no real limit to what you can have. Really great also when you have young-ish kids who want to help and can pick and assist with the cooking of the various ingredients!

5. The Busy Baker – Oreo No Bake Chocolate Mousse Cheesecake

So we missed off a treat that you can make easily, everything else just seems a bit… healthy. Well this is still kinda healthy but comes with a beautiful, rich and very easy to devour chocolate filling that involves very few ingredients. All you need is a fridge and a short list of ingredients to create a deliciously indulgent vegan dessert.

Good for: Treats, birthdays, celebrations even under lock-down, anniversaries, romance or simply because it’s Tuesday. This dessert can be made by pretty much anyone on the go, and you can make small versions in little pots too if you want to spread the goodness out, or keep little ones busy!

So, these are my top 5 lock-down / isolation recipes that are easy to make, easy to have fun with and VERY easy to eat! What’re your go-to recipes?

Stay safe, stay healthy and stay happy!

The best vegan salted caramel apple and pear crumble/crisp I ever did see!

Pull up a chair. Take a taste. Come join us. Life is so endlessly delicious.”
Ruth Reichl

Imma stop you right now. I know how this goes, you open a blog post about food and you expect 3 things. A story about why I made it, the recipe and pictures.

I have no pictures. We ate it. I’m sorry, I couldn’t wait.

There’s no story either. My mum and step-dad were coming round for dinner last night (we made a roasted cauliflower, new potato and mushroom curry which was insanely good – yay, go my wife for being an awesome cook!) but we needed a dessert.

I found a couple of recipes I liked but each had elements of the other I wanted to include. So I made my own! Specific thanks to Bosh! for the Salted Caramel recipe in particular from their UK show “Living on the Veg“.

So without further ado, or description of the weather outside or why I love comfort food. Here’s a recipe you should try!

For the filling:

  • 1 x Pink Lady apple
  • 1 x cooking apple
  • 1 x braeburn apple
  • 3 x rocha pears
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • Pinch of Salt
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil

For the salted caramel:

  • 100g pitted dates (Medjool desirable)
  • 120ml hot water
  • Large pinch flaked sea salt

For the crumble/crisp topping:

  • 75g vegan butter / coconut oil
  • 50g Soft Brown Sugar
  • 115g all-purpose flour
  • 1 heaped tablespoons ground almonds
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 small handful rolled oats

Steps:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 180 C (350 F)
  2. Peel, core and chop apples and pears into cubes, about the size of a large thumbnail
  3. Melt the coconut oil in a pan over a medium heat and then add the apples, pears, salt, cinnamon and maple syrup then cook for 10 minutes until soft
  4. Whilst the fruit is cooking add the topping ingredients to a bowl and (using your hands) combine into a breadcrumb style texture
  5. Add the dates, water and salt to a blender / nutribullet and blend until smooth
  6. Take the fruit off of the heat and stir in the date caramel mixture to combine then pour contents into an over proof dish
  7. Top with the crumble mixture and lightly press down to ensure all gaps are filled
  8. Bake uncovered for 30 minutes then serve piping hot with vegan custard or cream-alternative

Enjoy!