Kent Vegan Festival 2017

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Kent Vegan Festival – a truly beautiful event.

Mum and I arrived at about 11 and joined the queue to enter – there were food stalls outside and it was hard to resist eating everything before we got inside.

We paid £3 and received a wristband so we could come and go as we pleased.

Immediately we were greeted with extravagant cakes, ice cream, beauty products and clothes. With so many people, it was a bit tricky to move around at times (but that just gave us reason to have more cake samples).

It was so lovely knowing that we could try everything without having to ask “the usual” questions

I had a few favourite stalls and wanted to write about them this afternoon.

Firstly, we stopped off at Lincoln’s Lunchbox where we found a gorgeous dog (Lincoln) and some treats for our furry friends.  They had a range of flavours and sizes, so we got some Carrot & Broccoli biscuits for Milo – and they were shaped like little broccolis too! He loved them 💚

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Vegan Antics had such a lovely display and so much cake on offer I didn’t know where to start.  I went for a chocolate orange brownie (you know me and brownies…) and I can’t wait to try it!

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Then we moved along to Sweet P Bakes  – THEY HAD A UNICORN CUPCAKE!!! I carried it around the hall in a little pot with the lid propped open so as not to damage it in any way before I got to take a photo, but it was well worth the wait ✨

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Lastly, we chatted to the lovely Jade Green and her mum.  Their stall offered a warm smile and kind conversation – as well as a range of clothes and bags printed with messages to spread compassion.  Each design and style of top was available in different colours.  I’m in love with this one:

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I thoroughly enjoyed going to my first Vegan Festival and can’t wait to go to more.  I’ll be prepared next time and bring a bigger bag for all the lovely things I wanted to buy 🌱

Zizzi

For our anniversary, my boyfriend and I went to Zizzi in Whitstable.

I’ve always loved Zizzi because their food is yummy and affordable – but now they have a full vegan menu!

For a starter, I had Mixed Olives, followed by Lentil Ragu for my main meal (which is the vegan alternative to Spaghetti Bolognese, as it says in the menu).  Lentils are a staple in any vegan diet, but Zizzi use them so nicely it’s my returning favourite.

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Many people told me about the Sticky Chocolate & Praline Torte – even the waiter recommended it.  Served with Coconut and Chocolate Ripple gelato, it was the most delightfully decadent dessert.

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Also, the vegan dishes come with little green stickers clearly marked “VEGAN” and one of them is now on my phone case 💚  In addition, I learnt that the only wine I like isn’t vegan 😢  but all the non-blush wines available are!

Can’t wait to go back and feast again 🌱

Ms. Cupcake

Hey guys, hope everyone’s doing well.

Last Saturday I went to Brixton for a gig and we had some time to spare beforehand, so set about exploring (and eating).

I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect brownie for ever and guess what… I FOUND IT!!

Ms. Cupcake, thank you 😍

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It was sticky and squidgy and chocolatey and rich, and I haven’t stopped talking about it since… It was SO wonderful 💚

I was amazed to walk into an entirely vegan bakery with so much to offer – cakes, cookies, brownies, milkshakes, fridges/freezers/shelves jam packed with glorious food – and the lady I spoke to was so lovely.  I definitely need another trip back there soon and would highly recommend you guys going if you’re in the area!

🌱 xx

Sweet potato, chickpea & spinach curry

Good afternoon everyone, I hope you’ve had a wonderful week.

I thoroughly enjoyed writing about eating at Bartellas in my last post, so I’m going to write about dining out / food experiences more often.  However, as a student, money is pretty tight… This is where my good pal, Wetherspoon, comes along.

At The Thomas Ingoldsby (Canterbury) I saw a printed vegan menu which has everything vegan set out, including dessert.  However, the general menus have a seed icon to indicate if something is vegan.  Their website also allows you to search for vegan options, if you wanted to look in advance.

I had the Sweet potato, chickpea & spinach curry (I like a curry), which won the PETA Vegan Food Awards in 2016 for its deliciousness.

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I was too keen so ate some before I took my photo, but the portion is huge and amazingly satisfying.  It’s a little bit spicy but it balances out really beautifully with the vegetables and coconut sauce.

As it’s so glorious I always have it when I go, but I might try the Five-bean Chilli next time.

What’s your favourite place to eat relatively cheaply?

🌱 xx

Bartellas

On Saturday, I went to Bartellas in Meopham with my family and fell in love with their vegan menu.

As a vegan, eating in restaurants can be a bit of a nightmare, but with a separate menu containing starters, mains, sides and desserts, Bartellas made this night blissfully easy.

Bartellas menu

I didn’t have a starter but had their Butternut Squash and Sweet Potato korma with naan bread (yes, naan bread!!) for main.  It was divine – so rich and smooth and beautifully cooked, I would certainly have it again.

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For dessert, I had Poached Pear with a passionfruit and mango sauce decorating the plate.  It was so tasty and such a delicious yet simple dessert I’m surprised other places I’ve visited don’t serve fruit in ways as nice as this!

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Thank you, Bartellas, for an evening of wonderful food, with helpful staff.  I will definitely be back!

🌱 xx

Simple Sunday Shortbread

Good evening, hope everyone’s had a lovely week and chilled out Sunday 💚

Sundays are always slow and relaxed in my house so I thought I’d use my time to make shortbread – The Vegan Cookie finally documented making some vegan cookies, yay! 👍

Recipe

Shortbread is my favourite thing to make and the recipe is so so simple.  For this, you will need:

  • 300g plain flour
  • 200g butter/spread – I used Flora Freedom
  • 100g caster sugar

(3 – 2 – 1 – DONE!)

Pre-heat the oven to 175ºC (or 350ºF)

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Method

Firstly, mix the flour and sugar in your mixing bowl then rub in your butter/alternative until you’ve got a nice smooth ball of dough.

Then, sprinkle some flour over a clean work surface and rolling pin, to prevent the mix sticking, and roll it out – I cut round biscuits of about 1cm thickness so they’d all bake evenly, but you could cut them into squares, fingers, hearts – be creative!

Next, place them in your baking tray and decorate with a fork (this isn’t vital but it makes them look nice and also, if you’re planning on drizzling them with thin icing later, it allows for the icing to soak into the biscuit a bit 😇 )

Bake in the oven for between 10 and 20 minutes – they should come out pale brown but be careful not to catch the edges.

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Once baked, cool on a cooling rack and decorate if you so wish.  I mixed up some icing sugar and water and dropped a dash of vanilla essence in one pot and some lemon juice in the other.

Plate up and tuck in!

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How do you like to spend your Sundays? Is there anything you would recommend me baking? I’d love to know!

Also – I recorded each step today so I can give video making a try – I’ll keep you updated, depending on how it goes!!

🌱 xx

Bath Time Magic

I am in love

The Unicorn Horn bubble bar from Lush is beautiful 😍

It’s so sparkly and pink and dreamy and makes me very, very happy.

LUSH UNICORN HORN

With a gorgeous blend of lavender and neroli oil, you’ll feel relaxed and nourished from head to toe – I have another one of these in my “In Your Dreams” gift set which I can’t wait to use.

Pop to Instagram to see my boomerang  ✨💖

What have you used from Lush? I’d love to try some more things out xx

Banana Nice Cream

Good afternoon everyone, hope you’re all well 💚

After making the Goodness Me Green Smoothie from The Goodness Guide, I wanted to make Banana Nice Cream and I wasn’t disappointed!

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You will need:

  • 5 frozen bananas
  • 3 tbsp coconut milk
  • Any topping you fancy

Then you’ll pop the ingredients in a blender and blend away.

Point to note:

When you freeze your bananas, peel and cut them to put into a container and don’t put them in with the skins on – it’s a bit of a mess trying to get them out once they’re frozen……… 😳

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I picked up the cheapest coconut milk I could find and used 3 bananas because my blender wasn’t big enough for 5.

Once it’s all blended, it’s best to eat your nice cream pretty soon – putting it back in the freezer for too long makes it go crystallised and crunchy.

Oats and ‘chocolate’ sauce make a delicious topping combination, but you could try adding some toasted nuts or fruit instead  😇

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Have you made nice cream before? What ingredients did you use? I can’t wait to make berry flavours for the summer!🌱 xx

Banana Pancakes

I still sing Hollaback Girl in my head when I write “bananas”…

I really fancied some pancakes the other day but was a little apprehensive about making them without egg.  I found some recipes online that said using banana, oats and milk was a good mix, so thought I’d try it out.

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I used:

  • 3/4 cup of oats
  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 banana
  • 1 tsp sugar (to taste)

Pop the oats into a blender and pulse to make oat flour (magic stuff), then add the milk and banana and blitz some more.pancake-mixHeat a splash of oil in a frying pan and add 1/4 cup of mixture to make one pancake.  Make sure to spread the mixture round soon after, else you end up dragging it and it doesn’t make a pretty pancake 😢

Cook on the first side for a couple of minutes then flip it to cook the other side for about the same amount of time – it’ll start to dry out a bit and then you’ll be good to flip.

I made 4 pancakes with my mixture (the first one was so oily and chunky, it wasn’t fun) and used the remaining banana to decorate, adding some agave nectar as well.

For a first attempt they didn’t turn out too bad, but I think I’ll add some more milk next time.

If you haven’t already, I hope you give dairy free pancakes a go! If you have, how have you made them and what were they like?

I’d love to know how to make perfect pancakes 💚

(PS Milo didn’t eat any, he’s just really nosy 🐶)

“Goodness Me Green Smoothie”

Good morning!

I’ve been following the beautiful Jade Phoenix for a while now and I love watching her YouTube videos.  I enjoy learning about how to care for our bodies naturally and her first e-book, The Goodness Guide, is perfect for that.  Not only has Jade provided skin care tips, there is advice on how to be a happier and healthier person, along with a collection of wonderful, fresh recipes.  If you haven’t already checked her out, I would recommend you do!

This morning I gave “Goodness me green smoothie” a go and it was so refreshing and hydrating, I loved it.

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This is a screenshot from The Goodness Guide – if you can’t read it, you will need:

  • 2 frozen mangoes
  • 3 regular bananas
  • 1 cup of spinach
  • water

Pop in a blender, then blitz away!

I have a Nutribullet, and trying to fit all of that in there was tricky, so I used one frozen mango and 2 bananas instead – it worked pretty well 😇

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I think I’ve found my favourite smoothie combination, plus how gorgeous is this colour?!

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It made enough for 3 drinks so I’m set for the rest of the day 💚

I think I’ll give Jade’s banana nice-cream recipe a go next time!

Have a good day everyone 🌱 xx