Creamy Spinach + Leek Stuffed Mushrooms


Whenever I have portobello or flat mushrooms on hand I always seem to go to my default recipe- marinated in a sweet balsamic dresssing, grilled, and then served any of a number of ways: sliced into chunky strips strewn over a salad,  squished between a bun with lots of toppings… When I’ve found a recipe I love I get it into my head that nothing else I make with that ingredient will be as good and so I stick to the tried and tested.

I was definitely proven wrong today. I pushed myself to try something new and I may just have knocked my old fave off the top-spot!

These beauties really have that “umami” flavour and although rich-tasting they are pretty darn healthy too. I’d very happily eat a couple of them simply accompanied with some crusty bread for a satisfying lunch, light dinner, or even for breakfast.

Creamy Spinach + Leek Stuffed Mushrooms

I used coconut milk for the creaminess here and the coconut flavour wasn’t too strong for me when combined with plenty of garlic, earthy leeks and spinach as well as a good dose of nutritional yeast, but if you’re not a fan then you could swap in any other non-dairy cream (soy, coconut etc- there are various available commercially these days). A hint of nutmeg rounds these out nicely, but again you might prefer to go with a dash of cayenne instead for a slightly different background note.

Pictured below I served them with sweet potato chunks, roasted until the edges turn caramel-crisp and some delicately seasoned beluga lentils.

Creamy Spinach + Leek Stuffed Mushrooms

Creamy Spinach + Leek Stuffed Mushrooms

Creamy Spinach + Leek Stuffed Mushrooms:

3-4 Large Flat/Portobello Mushrooms
1 Leek, diced
3 Cloves garlic, minced
Few grinds nutmeg and/or cayenne
Several handfuls spinach
1/2C Coconut milk/non-dairy cream
2T Nutritional yeast
salt + pepper, olive oil

Preheat your oven to 180C/350F

Prepare your mushrooms- either wipe with a damp cloth or peel and de-stalk, brush with olive oil, sprinkle with a little salt and pepper and lay them on a baking sheet.

Sauté leeks over medium heat for 5 minutes until softening nicely, add minced garlic and cook for a further couple of minutes. Add your spinach (be generous as it will shrink down a lot) and spices of choice and cook until wilted. Pour over coconut milk, warm through and season.

Spoon creamy filling onto your prepared mushroom caps and sprinkle with nutritional yeast. Bake 20-30 minutes until turning golden.


What about you, do you stick to your tried and tested with certain ingredients, or are you open to trying new ideas?

Chickpea Salad with Cucumber, Parsley + Sun-dried Tomatoes


Having cooked the remainder of my 3kg (!) bag of dried chickpeas for the various dishes I made for the picnic at the weekend, I had just enough cooked chickpeas left for another salad.

I packed this flavourful dish in a Tupperware to take with me baby-sitting last night and it was a nice light dinner along with a bowl of veggie soup the kids’ Mum had made- enjoyed in peace and quiet after the little ones were tucked up!

Chickpea Salad with Cucumber, Parsley + Sun-dried Tomatoes

Zingy and light, but satisfying, with a good range of textures.  Just what I like in a salad.

Chickpea Salad with Cucumber, Parsley + Sun-dried Tomatoes

Gather ingredients. Chop chop chop. Add your dressing. Mix it up.

Chickpea Salad with Cucumber, Parsley + Sun-dried Tomatoes

The flavour improves after a sit in the fridge for a couple of hours so prepare in advance if you can.

Chickpea Salad with Cucumber, Parsley + Sun-dried Tomatoes:

1 3/4 C Cooked chickpeas (or 1 can, drained and rinsed)
1/2 Large cucumber, halved lengthwise and chopped into thin slices
1/2 Red onion, sliced thinly
1/4 C Dry-Packed Sun-dried tomatoes, soaked in warm water to rehydrate and thinly sliced
Bunch Parsley, roughly chopped (approx 1/3 C loosely packed)
Few Leaves Basil, julienned
2T Lemon Juice
1 T Olive Oil
Salt + Pepper

Serves 2-3 as a light meal

Stewed Rhubarb with Orange

Stewed Rhubarb with Orange

We’re being overrun by rhubarb at home. We were generously given a huge bunch of the stuff and it sat there in the fridge waiting to be eaten. Then, the following week we were given another bunch! I wouldn’t turn down a gift of fruit or veg so the fridge filled up…

To use up a good load of it I turned to a favourite rhubarb recipe- stewed with orange.

It can be cooked in a number of ways. We have an Aga oven at home so I put it in the bottom and cooked it own very low heat for a couple of hours so it kept most of its shape but had that lovely just-falling-apart texture. You can cook it on the stove-top too but it won’t need nearly as long on the heat.

Stewed Rhubarb with Orange

I chopped it up , threw it into an oven-proof dish, sprinkled over the zest and juice of an orange and added just enough sugar for my liking.

Stewed Rhubarb with Orange

It’s a perfect dessert with non-dairy yogurt, coconut cream or vanilla ice cream. It would be a delicious breakfast too, over porridge or layered up with some granola and yogurt.

Stewed Rhubarb with Orange

Stewed Rhubarb with Orange

Stewed Rhubarb with Orange


  • 1.5kg rhubarb (I told you I had a lot!)
  • 150g or 2/3 C sugar (you could use any sweetener you like, and more or less to your taste)
  • 1 orange, zested and juiced
  • 1/4 C water


  1. Chop up rhubarb into equal lengths of 2-3 inches.
  2. Place in oven-proof dish or large pan, zest and juice your orange and add to the dish along with your sweetener of choice and the water.
  3. Place in your oven on very low for a couple of hours, or on the stove-top, bring to a boil and simmer gently until soft, about 10 minutes.

There’s still some left, not to mention our own rhubarb in the garden! I think muffins are on the agenda…

Other rhubarb recipes on my radar:

Strawberry-rhubarb muffins (I’ve made these before and they are very good)

Rhubarb-berry baked oatmeal

Sweet and sour rhubarb chickpeas

Picnic + Pimm’s


The weather was beautiful all of last week in England and I seized the opportunity for some outdoor eating. It’s not often it’s warm enough (or not raining!). I had a group of uni friends around to celebrate the summer with vegan food and Pimm’s.

I don’t know how well-known Pimm’s is outside of the UK since it really is the quintessential English summer drink. I’m not a big drinker at all but I would never turn down a glass of Pimm’s.

It’s a gin-based liqueur which is mixed with lemonade, fresh fruit and mint. You can add whatever you like but I’m partial to strawberries, oranges, apples + cucumber.

Along with several jugs of  Pimm’s throughout the afternoon there was plenty to eat. It was fun introducing my friends to the delights of animal-free food, since none of them are even vegetarians. We were having too much fun so I forgot to take pictures of the spread but did snap a couple- here’s my first plate of food Smile

First Picnic Plate

And here’s the menu:

Chickpea Flour Veggie Quiche (Soy-free)

Rosemary Focaccia (Veganomicon)

Falafel (Vegan with a Vengeance) + Mediterranean Cashew Cucumber Dip (Veganomicon)

Crudités + Homemade Hummus

Green Salad

Chickpea, Tomato + Basil Salad (See below)

New Potato Salad with Mustard Dill Dressing [unpictured]


Here’s my lovely focaccia- I was really pleased with how well it turned out- great flavour and texture.

Oh…and there was dessert of course- Strawberries, Vanilla Ice Cream + Chocolate Brownies! (I would have loved to have made raw brownies but wanted to keep everything fairly simple and familiar for the omnivores)

The Chickpea, Tomato, Basil Salad was so simple but incredibly delicious and something I’ll definitely make throughout the summer when the tomatoes and basil in the garden get going properly.

Chickpea Tomato Basil Salad:

3 C Cooked Chickpeas (or 2 cans)

4 C Cherry Tomatoes, halved

3 Cloves Garlic

2T Apple Cider Vinegar

2 T Red Wine Vinegar

1T Maple Syrup or Agave Nectar

1T Olive Oil

As much Basil as you like, julienned

Good pinch Sea salt + Plenty of Black Pepper

Have you been dining al fresco at all this year? Any good picnic recipes to share?

Orzo, Spinach + Almond feta bake

Orzo, Spinach + Almond Feta Bake

The pantry decimation challenge is going well, another package finished! This time it was a lonely half cup of ground almonds (I think this is known as ‘almond flour’ outside the UK, i.e. blanched  very finely ground almonds).

This time Deb at maple spice came to the rescue with her beautiful Greek-style Orzo Bake.


This was so delicious and incredibly easy to put together. Just a matter of cooking up your pasta and spinach and combining with some fresh herbs- I went for basil as that’s what I had on hand- and the quick almond feta which is simply: blended ground almonds, lemon juice, garlic, salt, water + a little olive oil, then baking it in the oven for 30mins.

As I’m just cooking for me I divided the recipe by 3 (the amount of almonds I had left was exactly right!), and it gave me two small-ish but filling portions.

As Deb says, the recipe is very adaptable, you can mix up the herbs and add other veggies. I prefer to cook with whole grains and whole wheat orzo is quite hard to find over here so I’m thinking I might try it with brown rice next time and also add more basil and some chopped sun-dried tomatoes too.


As this was so quick I mixed up Deb’s mustard-dill vinaigrette for a little side salad too. Nice and tangy, just how I like it.

Do pop over to maple spice and take a look, there’s a whole host of fab recipes over there.

Hope you’re having a lovely weekend and the sun is shining in your part of the world!