Posts tagged chickpeas
Baked Falafel Pie... an easy meal to feed a crowd!

Wow... you're getting two recipes within a week.... it's like the days when I first started my blog when I often used to get three recipes up here per week! That's when I had a full time job as an architect too.... crazy days, how did I find time to do it all!

Recipe: Baked Falafel Pie

These days I develop so many recipes for destinations beyond this blog itself... such as for Real Food Source, my own ebooks and other publications that sometimes this space loses the battle of priorities. I am looking to charge all that again- with one new recipe per week from the New Year onwards- an early resolution of sorts?

Anyway, back to this recipe!

This came about a couple of week ago as I was developing new recipes for my Lanzarote retreat.... I wanted something that was delicious, filling and easy to cook for 8-10 people (though the recipe below is halved to feed about four). This is a total winner and a lovely spin on the more traditional falafel balls.

It's not my brainchild- there are loads of similar creations across blog land- I got the idea from a general Pinterest search looking for meal image ideas rather than any one recipe in particular. I imagine you could tweak this to add in other herbs or spices to suit. You could also add a chunky salsa, guacamole or other topping instead of hummus if you preferred.

I realised this recipe would be also very similar to my classic nut roast (still a go-to favourite and great to have on standby in the freezer) and so I used that as the base and made a few ingredient tweaks.

Let me know what you think.... I'll let you know how it goes down with the guests on my retreat ;-)

Recipe: Baked Falafel Pie

Recipe: Baked Falafel Pie

Serves 3 portions with salad or 4-5 if serving as part of a larger dinner


  • 1 cup chopped nuts of choice

  • 2 tbs olive oil

  • One onion diced

  • One large garlic clove minced

  • 2 sun-dried tomatoes (optional for extra depth of flavour)

  • 1 large carrot grated

  • 1 medium courgette grated

  • 1 cup chickpeas

  • 1 cup oats (or cooked rice or quinoa or dry wholemeal breadcrumbs- GF if needed)

  • 2 heaped tbs flax (or tapioca or potato flour)

  • ¼ cup fresh coriander

  • 1 tbs ground cumin

  • 2 tbs soy sauce (GF if needed)

  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • 1 tub hummus (or homemade if possible)

  • 2 sliced avocados

  • a sprinkle of salt and pepper


Pre-heat oven to 180C. coarsely grind the nuts and set aside. Finely chop and sauté vegetables in olive oil for 5 mins until soft. Mix all remaining ingredients in large bowl and add vegetables and nuts to it.

Mix and mash together well. Add more oats (or another dry ingredient) if mixture is too wet or a little water or stick if too dry.

Press mixture firmly into a greased and lined medium baking dish (it should be around a generous inch thick). Bake for approx. 45 mins until golden on top, the inside will still be moist. Add hummus and avocado slices to serve with salad or cooked greens.

Recipe: Baked Falafel Pie
Recipe: Baked Falafel Pie
Recipe: Baked Falafel Pie
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The most versatile vegan quiche... four ways!

Wow... I owe you a recipe!!  Yeah this was once a recipe blog ;-)

I have so many recipes I want to share, and even more than I want to test out... but I have so many other things I ask want to share and only so many hours in the day to do it all!  Plus Wholeplus to manage on top of all that!

I hope this makes up for it! It was one of my favourites versatile creations during December. A spin off from this recipe that I knew at the time held so much more potential, and so it is that 'potential' I want to share with you today. I also featured festive variation using parsnip instead of cauliflower in my column in Definition Magazine in the November issue last year... yummy!

This recipe is also perfect for this time of year. Comforting yet light and tummy friendly, and perfect for a lunch or dinner. Packed with protein but without weighing you down... Winner!

When it comes to recipes, you surely know how high ease and versatility rate on my scale of importance by now! This does not disappoint... I promise! (even though the method looks longer than usual... it is really simple!!

I've called it a quiche, thought I guess it's not really in that it doesn't have a crust or use eggs, it's also lighter than a quiche with the chickpea/cauli infusion going on. It's definitely not a pie or fritatta what else would I call it? Quiche is definitely the closest.

I've provided the base recipe below and all the addition options beneath. These are my flavours...but try experimenting with whatever takes your fancy or you happen to have to hand. You'll see in these photos I made single serve size quiches in jumbo muffin cups. They worked really well. You could make a big batch to freeze!

Recipe: The most versatile vegan quiche

Make 1 x 8” pie dish or 3-4 single serve jumbo muffin sized

Basic ingredients:

  • 1 cup chickpea flour

  • 1 tbs flax

  • ½ tsp salt

  • ½ tsp general mixed seasoning

  • ½ tsp baking powder

  • ¼ tsp baking soda

  • half a head of a small-med cauliflower (equal to 1 cup grated)

  • ½ a onion sliced thinly

  • 1 cup water

Options- add one of these (or more than one if making mini quiches):

  • 1/2 cup black beans (I teamed this with a smoky chipotle sauce and nutritional yeast)

  • 1/2 cup corn and sliced red onion (I used frozen corn and added paprika)

  • 1/2 cup sliced red pepper and sun dried tomatoes (I teamed this with fresh basil)

  • 1/2 cup chopped spinach (I teamed this with garlic)

  • 1/2 cup sliced courgette (I teamed this with dried italian herbs and fresh rosemary)


Mix the dry ingredients together and set aside.  Chop the onion finely and grate/process the cauliflower (to a rice like consistency) and add both to the dry mix, then add the water and mix through well.

If you are making mini quiches, separate the batter now.

Stir through your chosen additions (add flavours at the same time as the other ingredients in previous steps if more appropriate to do so) 

The mixture should be thick and clumpy but easy to spoon into a tin. I used an 8” silicone cake tin, but you could also use a metal one with removable bottom, or large silicone muffin cups.

Press the mixture firmly into the pan but leave the top quite rough for some nice texture. Bake at 180C for approx 30 mins until the tops is nice and golden, or around 20 minutes for mini quiches (keep an eye on the colour).

Serve either hot or cold. This ‘quiche’ holds together really well when cold so would also be great for picnics/lunchboxes. It also freezes well and can be reheated in the oven.

Why not sign up for my newsletter in my sidebar where I feature roundups and special offers plus my FREE ebook. If you are new round here check out my 'About' and 'Getting Started' tabs up top. To buy nibbles you can also find me over at Wholeplus. 

Day to day you can always find me hanging out in these places:

I've entered this recipe into the Health Bay Recipe Challenge because I reckon this hits the spot for both health and taste!  What do you think?


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Raw veggie slaw cabbage wraps

A couple of weekends ago I had spent a long day out in the sunshine watching my brother compete in a rowing competition at the seaside near Portsmouth. Most of my day was spent eating fruit as there was a stall selling pots of fresh chunky summer fruits....yummy!   

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Coming back late that evening I realised I had kind of missed dinner during the long train ride home and didn't hold up too many hopes for healthy vegan food at 10:30pm at the train station...but my luck was in!

If any of you are in the London area I suggest you check out Leon.  I think they are a pretty new healthy 'fast food' company and this was the first time I came across them. I had a small but satisfying pot of simple veggie slaw and vowed to recreate it when i got home. Not all their food is vegan but there are plenty of vegan options in their menu.

So here have have it, a simple raw veggie slaw, with cabbage wraps and some Moroccan spiced chickpeas for zing...cos I got a little bit carried away! 

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Recipe: Veggie slaw cabbage wraps

Serves 2


  • ½ cup each: carrot, red cabbage, savoy cabbage, khol rabi, peas
  • 1 tbs fresh mint- chopped/ripped
  • 2 tsp toasted sesame seeds
  • 4 savoy cabbage leaves (bottom of stalk removed
  • ½ cup cooked chickpeas
  • ½ tsp harissa paste
  • sauce:
  • 1 tbs hummus
  • 2 tbs water
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar


Thinly slice or grate the veggies and toss in the sesame seeds and mint. Meanwhile soak the cabbage leaves for approx 4-5 mins in a shallow dish of boiling water to soften.

If accompanying the wraps with Moroccan chickpeas, prepare these first by coating in the paste and lightly roasting for approx. 15 mins.

Lastly mix up the drizzle sauce.

Wrap the raw veggies in the cabbage leaves and add chickpeas and sauce before folding up and sealing with a toothpick if needed.  Just to warn is still a ‘knife and fork’ and not a 'using your fingers' eating task!

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Cookie dough pops...on ice!

Hello hello!! My first post on my new-look blog!

I'm still a little bit excitable, just because it's been such a long time coming and now it's finally here. Just a few little bits left to smooth out and of course any feedback from you guys very welcome. I hope you found me ok and have reconnected from where we left off :-)

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On to today's recipe...getting in on the summer act as it's been so hot these last few day (not that i'm complaining!) We have an Including Cake classic...chickpeas!! I've experimented with chickpeas in sweet things so many a time before… I've even experimented with cookie dough concoctions a long time ago back in the days of this blog... though my efforts (and photography) have come a long way since then!

More recently I came across this recipe for cookie dough fudge… It used chickpeas so of course I was immediately intrigued! Last weekend I had a quick go at whipping up a batch. It tasted okay but I just wasn't quite sold on it's texture, I think in part due to the fact that I found it tricky from the point at which you freeze and defrost to hit the spot for the right consistency- it was either a little bit too hard or too soft for that real fudgey feel.

However, I loved the idea so much I had a re-think. I worked with the texture and turned it from an issue into a opportunity! I added a little extra milk in the form of coconut milk for richness and and some agave syrup so that it was slightly more liquid than the original mix, then I froze it in mini muffin trays with lolly sticks to make my very own frozen 'cake' pops! Add in choc chunks, or nuts etc...turn them in to trail mix pops if you so fancy!

Result!! They have been the perfect nibbly chilled snack this last week! I generally let them thaw for 5 mins before eating for the perfect edge of creaminess.


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Recipe: cookie dough ice pops

Makes approx 8-10 pops


1 1/2 cups chickpeas

1/4 cup peanut butter (or nut butter of choice)

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 cup coconut milk

3 tbs agave syrup

15 drops stevia

1 tsp vanilla and a pinch of salt

1/4 cup flax

2 tbs melted coconut oil


1/3 cup dark chocolate chips or cacoa nibs (I used nibs) you could also use nuts/dried fruits



Blend all ingredients together until smooth adding chocolate chunks etc last to maintain their texture.

The mixture should be thick but creamy. Spoon/pour into ice pop moulds or silicone mini muffin cases and add a stick. 

Freeze until solid. I left mine in the muffin tray but once frozen you could remove and store as you wish in the freezer. Defrost for a few minutes prior to eating for optimum eating experience!


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Double whammy banana cake (gluten free)

The past few days have flown by in a whirlwind!

As well as recovering from a compressed nerve in my spine (which totally obliterated any form of cooking opportunity for most of last week), I needed to somehow bake a big batch of various cakes for a stall I had planned at the Love Architecture event at the architectural company where I work…. It was touch and go whether I would recover in time.

As it happens the pain killers I’d be prescribed finally kicked in and I was up to the challenge.

So what did I bake?

I wanted a varied selection to satisfy all tastes. Yes, there had to be a lot of chocolate involved but also lots of other treats for the not-so-chocolate lovers!

I settled for chocolate orange and gingerbread smoosh bars…my favourites!  Toffee blondies which were closely based on m sticky toffee pudding recipe, raspberry almond chocolate torteplus a peppermint cream variation on that theme…and last but not least (at the request of my colleagues) banana cake.

I have made banana bread for the blo here before (way back in the early days) but until now I hadn’t attempted a gluten free version. 

I called this new version ‘double whammy’ because I used both fresh bananas and dried chewy chunks for extra depth of flavour and texture. If you can’t find dried bananas (they need to be the chewy natural dried ones not the crisp banana chips covered in sugar!) then you can just sub extra dates of you wish or simply omit altogether.

My usual gluten free flour combo also worked really well, everyone said that they would never have known it was GF which makes it a huge success! I baked the banana cake in 4 small loaf tins (approx 15cm long), but a larger loaf tin (note: I haven’t tested this so baking times will need to be modified) or muffin tins would also be fine.

The cakes sold really well and the few that remained I brought home to freeze as treats for me, so all is good! I also had some business cards designed and printed, hence why you may have noticed a few changes around here with a new colour theme and a new logo! I'd love to hear your thought's and feedback! I didn't know what my title on the business cards should decided upon 'Cakemaster', quite fitting I think, ha ha!

Recipe: Double whammy banana cake

Makes approx. 4 mini loaves

  • 4 ripe bananas- well mashed
  • 1 cup cooked chickpeas
  • ½ cup coconut butter- melted
  • 3 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ cup agave plus ½ tsp stevia
  • 2 cups GF flour (1 cup buckwheat, ½ cup ground almonds, ½ cup tapioca flour)
  • ½ cup dried bananas- chopped
  • ¼ cup dates- chopped (optional)
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cinnamon/mixed spice
  • Soy milk (or other liquid) as necessary (I used approx ¼ cup)


Mix together wet ingredients in a small bowl. In a large bowl, mix together the dry ingredients. Add wet ingredients and mix lightly but well with spoon. Add a little soy milk last as necessary to achieve desired consistency (not too stiff).

Once combined, pour the mixture into 4 small/2 medium greased and lined loaf tin or muffin cases and bake at 180C for approx. 20-30 minutes depending on pan size. Test with a toothpick to ensure the centre is cooked. If the top begins to brown before the centre is cooked through lightly cover the pan with tin foil.

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Roasted chickpea 'croutons'

I had come across numerous recipes for roasted chickpeas but I’d never had a go myself until now.  The principle is so simple…..get your cooked chickpeas (I cook mine from dried in big batches and then freeze them until needed), add seasoning, roast until crisp and golden.

The perfect alternative to popcorn for a night in with a DVD, a handy snack alternative to roasted nuts or even sprinkled over a salad for a crispy bite offering a GF alternative to crispy bread croutons.   You can vary the seasonings as you wish. I went for an Indian theme for my first batch and then through in a few Italian spices and a little tomato paste for a lovely crunchy salad topper. I would really recommend the salad topper as a really quirky alternative to croutons as the texture is great!

The chickpeas will keep for a few days if stored in an airtight container so you’ll have plenty of snack options to hand. I haven’t yet tried freezing these but I imagine that would also work well.

The spice combinations below are just examples of what I went for so feel free to through in whatever you choose!

Recipe: Roasted chickpea Croutons

Makes one bowl

Ingredients Indian:

  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 1 tbs ground flax or chia seeds
  • 1 tbs fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbs red palm oil or olive oil
  • 1 tsp agave nectar (optional)
  • 200g cooked drained chickpeas

Ingredients Italian:

  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp mixed Italian herbs
  • ¼ tsp onion powder
  • ¼ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 1 tbs ground flax or chia seeds
  • 1 tbs fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tbs red palm oil or olive oil
  • 1 tbs tomato puree
  • 200g cooked drained chickpeas


Preheat oven to 200C. In a medium bowl all the ingredients and mix well adding the chickpeas last.

Place the seasoned chickpeas in a single layer on a greased or parchment lined baking shee. Bake for 25-30 minutes, stirring once during cooking, until chickpeas are slightly crispy.

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Double choc banana blondie

On Monday and Tuesday I celebrated my birthday with my work colleagues.... I told you I like to drag out my birthday (which was on Friday) for as long as possible!

At the weekend I'd baked an experimental 'double chocolate banana blondie' to surprise my work colleagues with...they knew it would be healthy and vegan, I then also told them it was gluten free and sugar free....just before they took their first bite I also told them that it had an added secret ingredient...could any of them guess?

Nope......but can you guess? Go on, you should know me well by now. 

Oh yes...beans! Well, actually chickpeas.

This was originally going to be a simple 'blondie sponge' based on this blondie recipehowever I realised I had no sweet potato so decided to wing it and sub this for banana and a little tofu instead, this gave the cake a lovely subtle banana kick, not overly so bananary the way a full on banana cake would be but it really complimented the chocolate layer (which I decided needed to be added for visual pizazz) and the choc chunks and nutty crumbles on the top really well.

The verdict....recipe requests, just like this time!

 I should probably share my baking experiments more!

So that was Monday, but yesterday it was my turn to be surprised when I was presented with a vegan banana cake that had been ordered for me specially and had taken a while to be delivered. It was such a sweet gesture. So after lunch, we all had a tasted pretty good, although more like a tea bread as it was much dryer than my cake and the apple juice that had been used as a sweetener overpowered the banana in my opinion. The unanimous vote was that my cake was better…yay!!  

Ah ha, here is me and a slice of my surprise banana cake...figured you might want to see a photo of my silly face at birthday time...a rare occurrence to see an actual photo of me on this blog!



The recipe below is for my banana cake. You could make it into a loaf, slices, muffins or a nice round sponge as I did. Options, options...feel free to get a little crazy with your toppings too.

Recipe: Double choc banana blondie

Makes one 7” round cake


  • 1 medium banana
  • ½ cup silken tofu
  • ½ cup mashed chickpeas
  • 1/3 cup coconut butter- melted
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup agave plus ¼ tsp stevia
  • 1 cup GF flour mix* (I used 1/3 cup each of almond meal, buckwheat flour, tapioca flour)
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • A pinch salt
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 3 tbs cocoa powder
  • Handful dark chocolate chips
  • Handful nuts (I used hazlenuts)

*you could substitute spelt or regular flour for non GF


Blend the wet ingredients in food processor until very smooth. Pour into a bowl, add dry ingredients (except cocoa, chocolate and nuts) and blend together well mixed.

Divide the mixture into two bowls and add the cocoa two one half of the mixture and mix through well.

Spoon the chocolate mixture into a greased/lined  7” round cake tin (or square tin or loaf tin) and smooth out. Spoon over the blondie layer and gently smooth across taking care not to disturb the bottom layer.

Add the choc chunks and nuts to the top. Bake in the oven at 180C for approx. 20 mins until lightly golden at the edges and a skewer comes away clean.. Allow to cool before slicing and serving.

This recipe is shared with Slightly Indulgent Tuesday's

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Sweet Potato Curry

We've been in 'date mode' recently, with my new best friend the Date Syrup making an appearance. Don't worry he's not gone away for long- I have a couple more date inspired recipes for you next week...but for now I have a simple mid week winter warmer.

This dish is one of my go-to dishes and it never fails to please veggies and meaties alike.

I was one of the first meals I cooked for the Boy when I began to experiment with doing things the vegan way. I love it just as much today as I did back then. What’s not to love….it’s colourful, warm, creamy, comforting, lightly spiced and hints at the tropics. Close your eyes and maybe you’ll be taken to a far off land.

Ok, well maybe not that last sentence. But I guarantee this bowl of colourful curry will brighten your day.

It’s also a simple dish with few ingredients, easily adapted to other veggies/beans you may have, is thrown together in one pot and can be frozen for future speedy suppers.

Ok, so have I convinced you yet!  This would also work really well with my super simple flatbread as a healthy alternative to naan!

I also have another reason as to why this particular dish, or namely the photos, are making me happy. I’ve been trying to take decent ‘night shots’ of my meals for a while now, and up until recently I had been making slow progress. My research and investigations pointed me in the direction of two key props: a powerful light with good ‘white’ rendering (I’ve used a portable LED source) and a diffuser layer (I’ve used an old bed sheet over a wooden frame).

This shoot was a simple 5 minute experiment (before my dinner got cold), and I really wasn’t expecting much of an outcome. However, for such a quick first attempt I was really pleased with my efforts….well now to see if Food Gawker shared that same opinion!


Recipe: Sweet potato curry

Serves 4


  • 2-3 tablespoons madras curry paste

  • 1 medium onion- diced

  • 3 medium (fist sized) sweet potatoes- approx. 800g (peeled and chopped into chunks)

  • 1 red pepper- sliced

  • 1 tin of chickpeas (or other white beans)

  • 200g bag of spinach

  • 1 can of coconut milk


In a large frying pan or wok, fry the onion for few minutes in olive oil till soft. Add curry paste and fry for 1 min. Add the coconut milk, sweet potato, pepper and chickpeas and simmer for approx. 15 minutes until potato is cooked. Add spinach (fold spinach through the mixture in handfuls) simmer for a couple more minutes until spinach is wilted. If not liquidy enough add a little water. Serve immediately with rice or naan bread as desired.

Freeze left over portions in individual bags.


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