Vegan Quesadillas

Vegan Quesadillas

This Plant based spin on a Mexican Classic ticks all the boxes of its traditional counterpart but without leaving you with the heaviness that you get from eating the meaty equivalent, not to mention its packed with vitamins important to keep you healthy.

Although I served this with a mixed leaf and tomato salad (to keep my wife and eldest daughter happy), I personally prefer serving it with some Nachos, Salsa and Refried Beans.

Ingredients

1Kg of Sweet Potatoes

4 Tablespoons of pickled Jalapeno peppers

1 Brown Onion

4-5 Small Sweet Peppers

A big handful of Coriander / Cilantro

1 Tablespoon of Plant-Based butter

1 Lemon

4 Tortillas

6 Tablespoons of Olive Oil

Method

  • With a fork, repeatedly prick the sweet potatoes and either Microwave for 10 minutes OR oven bake for an hour.
Be a prick…with these Sweet Potatoes
  • Finely chop up the Jalapeno, Sweet Pepper, Onion and Coriander and fry in some Olive Oil until soft.
  • Once the Sweet Potatoes are ready, scoop out the soft flesh into a mixing bowl and mash with your Vegan Butter until smooth.
  • Mix in your chopped ingredients, add the juice of the lemon, and stir until the mixture is evenly dispersed and put to one side.
  • Get the Tortilla and brush with olive oil.
  • Add to a hot pan to toast on one side. This should only take about 30 seconds or so.
  • Transfer your toasted Tortilla to a plate and while hot, apply your sweet potato mixture to half of the tortilla.
  • Fold and gently press the toasted Tortilla until its sets in a semi-circle shape.
  • Repeat the process with other Tortillas and serve with either a lovely fresh salad or some refried beans, nachos and salsa.
  • Sit down, relax, consume, and enjoy.

Mushroom Stroganoff

Mushroom Stroganoff

This hearty dish is a firm favourite in our house, I am not usually a fan of cooking with alcohol and the White Wine can be left out if needs be, however, for the cooking aroma alone I would leave it in. No need to buy anything expensive either, it is the vital ingredient here. Also, the Crème Fresh adds a tang to the dish, if you are not a fan of this, try double cream as an alternative or a Plant Based Alternative to make this dish Vegan. My personal preference is my recipe below, however, the fun of cooking is tweaking things here and there to maximise the experience and make it your own.

Ingredients

250g of Chestnut Mushrooms

250g of Regular White Mushrooms

1 Large Brown Onion

A healthy pinch of Cayenne Pepper

1 teaspoon of Paprika (smoked is fine)

2 / 3 cloves of garlic (dependant on size)

3 Tablespoons of Olive Oil

2 Teaspoons of Dijon Mustard

1 vegetable stock cube dissolved in 200Ml of hot water.

200Ml of Crème Fraiche

A handful of Parsley

150Ml of cheap white wine (Optional)

Method

  • Finely chop the onion & garlic
  • Add 1 tablespoon of Olive Oil to the pan and heat, then add the chopped onion & garlic.
  • Fry for about 5 minutes or until the onions become soft
  • Add the Cayenne Pepper and Paprika then mix well.
  • Move your onion mixture to a bowl and allow to stand while you prepare the mushrooms.
  • Finely chop both types of mushrooms, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the pan and introduce your mushrooms to the hot oil and fry on a high heat until they’re brown and softened.
  • Return your onion and garlic mixture to the pan and stir in the wine if its being used then reduce the heat and allow to simmer.
  • Prepare the rice as instructed by the packet. Personally, I prefer to weigh out the rice, pop it in a sieve and run under cold water for a few minutes. This removes the starch from it and the rice is far less likely to turn into a sticky, starchy goop. Then add to some boiled water and follow the instructions on the packet.
  • While the Rice cooks, go back to the Stroganoff and stir in the Dijon mustard and the 200Ml of vegetable stock. Allow this a few minutes to reduce for a few minutes and then add the Crème Fraiche, lemon juice and some chopped parsley, saving some whole leaf parsley for a garnish.
  • Once the rice is ready, drain and create a bed in a bowl, then add a good splodge of your creation, use the left-over parsley to make it look posh.
  • Congratulations! You have just made Mushroom Stroganoff, serve, enjoy, and revel in the fact your kitchen smells amazing.

6th May 2021

April 6th 2021

Hello Out There!!!

I hope all of you are safe and well.

All I can say is I’m better at cooking than I am with WordPress. I’ve spent all morning trying to get my website the way I want it. I don’t think its too much to ask for to have a lovely, simplified set up where I can separately publish a blog and recipes of varying ilk.

What is compounding matters is the man-flu I seem to have contracted from my 2nd Astra Zeneca vaccine I had yesterday. I was lucky enough to survive Covid where so many friends and family didn’t so I’m happy to have the vaccine even with these side effects. That said, I know its temporary but every cell in my body is telling me to curl up on the sofa and watch a back-to-back episodes of Buffy The Vampire Slayer.

Its been a busy few days. Some of my equipment for the next phase of my project has arrived. Two backlit tripods, a portable hob and a new Crockery set has safely arrived. On Tuesday, I had an enjoyable time scouring the Charity Shops in the nearby town of Carmarthen. I come away with five cookery books one Vegan, two Curry books and two cake books. I’m currently experimenting with the recipes to see if I can add a personal twist on them and look forward to documenting them soon.

Stay Well

Andrew

Arrabiata Ragu

Arrabiata Ragu

Posted byCookingAtTheCrowleysPosted inMeal RecipesRecipesEditArrabiata Ragu

Arrabiata is Italian for “Angry Pasta” whilst “Ragu” translates to what the British know as Bolognese. Arrabiata is typically served as a basic sauce to accompany Penne Pasta. The flavour does give a heat which varies in the taste of whoever is cooking it. I’ve had Arrabiata that could easily dissolve my stomach lining however, like curries I prefer to taste the balance of flavours that the herbs and spices bring. This recipe gives a comfortable warmth without melting your eyes and flaying your nostril hair.

Arrabiata Ragu

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250g Minced Beef

3 Tomatoes

1 Tin of Chopped Tomatoes

1 x 500g Carton of Passata

2 Chilli Peppers

1 Large Courgette

1 x 300ml container of Passata

A handful of Basil

1 Large Onion

3 Cloves of Garlic

Olive Oil

Pasta (Ideally Linguine but regular dried Spaghetti will do the job)

Method

  • Top and Tail your onion, followed by finely chopping it.
  • De-skin the Garlic and finely chop.
  • Finely chop the Chilli’s (Personally, I prefer to take the seeds out as they give the most heat, I have a preference of flavour over a trial of manhood)
  • Chop up your tomatoes, sun dried tomatoes, some of the basil and courgette (Again, as a personal preference, I like my veg chunky and substantial, however, if you are catering for picky eaters, chopping them finely will allow you to sneak some extra vitamins into someone’s day, even if they are 18 and claim to be a worldly wise adult)
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  • Add a little oil to your frying pan and fry the minced / ground beef. Once cooked transfer to a colander. Boil a full kettle of water and rinse the excess fat off cooked beef and leave to drain. Wipe out most of the fat from the pan, leaving some for the next step.
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  • Take a tablespoon of the prepared garlic, chilli and onion and add to the pan, mix with the remaining fat and add a splash of Olive Oil for a base.
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  • Now add your chopped and sliced vegetables and cook over a medium heat giving them about 5 minutes to absorb the base sauce.
  • Add a tin of chopped tomatoes and a carton of passata and stir until the veg in evenly distributed among the sauce.
  • Now add your now, reduced fat and cholesterol beef, stir, cover, and simmer.
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  • Boil a kettle full of water and add to a pan with some salt. Grab a sturdy handful of dried spaghetti, twist the pasta, place in the water and release so it fans out. As the Pasta softens it will slip into the pan, cooking properly without needing to break it.
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  • Simmer for 10 minutes. Drain pasta in the colander and drizzle a glug of olive oil over it and some black pepper. Shake in the colander and serve. Adding a healthy dollop of sauce on top and garnish with a few basil leaves.
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  • Sit Down and enjoy with your best mate
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Maiden Voyage

Shwmae!!!!

Welcome to my new blog, you beautiful people!!!

Allow me to introduce myself. I’m Andrew Crowley and lucky enough to live in Gower, South Wales with my wife Joanne, daughters Lauren and Katie, dogs Jake and Libby and Cats, Milo and Skittles (I didn’t name her).

I was employed by the NHS for 14 years but after an injury, I was put on medical redundancy and essentially drop kicked onto a Disability Scrapheap. It has taken me a while to come to terms with this but now I see this as an opportunity to break away from the drudgery of a 9-5 job, to do things I love and spend time with my family and friends, hopefully in the long run I want to make a living off this.

Speaking of poverty, a term banded around a lot by the media these days. This is a term that applies to a growing number of people not only in the UK and further afield. Wages are low or non-existent, rarely because of personal fault but from a economy based on misdirection and lies, the Government disavows its role in creating this misery and the veneer of a caring financial sector is easily scratched away to reveal its callous nature. Its my humble opinion that all the lessons we could have learned about how dysfunctional of society is exposed by Covid have been forgotten despite the very real after-effects.

So these days, I’m doing the things I love, cooking, gardening, writing, photography and spending time with my family and non-humans (who are less trouble than the humans). My kitchen is my office, Alexa supplies me with an endless supply of what music I’m in the mood for.

I’ve decided to create this blog to help those in need. Making food from scratch is usually more economical that purchasing oven ready meals and is certainly healthier as you control the ingredients going in, there’s also a sense of pride and accomplishment when you serve something you’ve made with your own hands.

THE RULES I WILL Try to Follow

  1. The recipes I use have either been passed down to me by my Mum or Nan, I have tinkered with cookbook recipes to fine tune them for my taste or whoever I’m cooking for. No plagiarism is intended but the laws of statistics dictate they may be an overlap to other works around the printed world and internet.
  2. I will try not to use Kitchen Gadgets as mush as possible. They can be expensive and I want as many people to enjoy the food and cooking experience as possible.
  3. Feel free to use ready made pastry etc, its relatively cheap, however, I would recommend making your own. Economy wise, it may only cost £1 for a ready rolled sheet but sometimes a pound might as well be a billion if there’s too much month and not enough payday.
  4. I will try to buy locally from Butchers and Greengrocers in my village, they’re overlooked for quality and advice, however, I must concede that budget supermarkets can offer prices that stretch a tiny budget way further.
  5. Life is short and to be experienced. I will try to be as healthy as possible, but food is my vice, and I can’t pass up a burger. I do not want to live for a hundred years lusting after a curry while munching on mung beans.
  6. I’ve nothing against Vegan food and sympathise with their beliefs. Occasionally, there might be a Vegan recipe on here, but I do love a bit of the meat. Yes, I just read that back (I’m secure in my sexuality)

This list is not exhaustive, but I think a good start.

I look forward in getting to know you.

Lets cook!!

Vegan Mediterranean Vegetable Bake

Easy to make and packed with vitamins

Vegan Mediterranean Vegetable Bake

I love this simplistic dish. It reminds me of a time I was lucky to go to Tuscany with some friends. I was a picky eater at the time and the most exotic food I would eat was Cheese and Tomato Pizza. Having this assortment of colours, textures and flavours hitting my naive little taste buds was a revolution to my palate. My wife has an aversion to Aubergine, so I leave it out when cooking for the family. Also, if you are not a practicing Vegan, a sprinkling of Parmigiano Reggiano really enhances the flavours.

Because I rarely use alcohol, I am a poor judge of what wine to recommend with this but dining Al-Fresco with this dish is certainly etched in my memory.

The Ingredients

Ingredients

250g of Mushrooms

3 Tomatoes

1 decent sized Courgette

2 Red Onion

A Handful of Basil

1 Yellow Bell Pepper

1 Red Bell Pepper

1 Aubergine / Egg Plant (Optional)

Garlic

Olive Oil

Black Pepper

Salt

Method

  • Rinse and quarter the mushrooms
  • Top and tail the onions and then quarter them, separate the onion layers so they look like petals.
  • Chop the rest of the peppers, courgette, tomatoes and (optional) aubergine into large chunks.
  • Finely slice the 2 cloves of garlic (or use 2 teaspoons of squeezy garlic, I’m not gonna judge you for saving time)
  • Pour some olive oil into a roasting tin.
  • Add the chopped veg and garlic to the roasting tin.
  • Add more Olive Oil and toss in the roasting tin.
  • Rip up a few Basil Leaves and liberally spread over the Vegetables.
  • Add Salt and Black Pepper to personal taste.
  • Cook at 180 0 C for 25 minutes
  • For a non-vegan option, I would recommend using a garnish of hard Italian Cheese such as Shaved Parmigiano Reggiano (available from Aldi for about a £1)
  • Serve and enjoy.