Vegan stew with basmati rice

Hello foodies! Let’s meet the new week with lots of love so it can give us a lot more reasons to smile.

It’s almost 2 months now since Top Food Facts became a friendly place for vegans. At first it was only a 2-week challenge, but I really enjoyed stuffing myself with fruits, veg, legumes etc.

There’s already 7 of my friends that I succeeded into turning vegan, some of them 90% vegan (they still cheat with a bit of cheese or a piece of bacon). They started feeling better and the new food that goes into their plates makes them happy. They motivate me to keep going and really believing that this kind of food is really healthy for us, because at the end it’s all about the way you feel. They all lost a bit of weight, and they all rediscovered the real taste of the natural products.

I am also connecting with some very influential vegan bloggers on the topic “Why Vegan?”. Have a look at all of our interviews – you can learn a lot from them.

Exactly a month ago, I showed you how to cook a very nice vegan pasta and many of you came back to me with impressive results! I am happy that you liked it, so now I have one more idea about how to use the same sauce with basmati rice.

In case you’ve missed the pasta recipe, I will show you one more time how to do the sauce.

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Vegan stew with basmati rice
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cans of chopped cherry tomatoes
  • 300 gr of mushrooms
  • 1 head of broccoli
  • 3 big carrots
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • maple syrup, salt, pepper, basil, thyme, oregano, parsley
  • 250 gr of cooked basmati rice
Instructions
  1. Start by frying your carrots with a bit of oil on a medium heat
  2. Then add the mushrooms, broccoli, garlic and season with salt and pepper
  3. Cook for 6-7 minutes until the mushrooms change to a darker color and then add the tomatoes and all the herbs that we suggested
  4. Let it simmer on a low heat for 50 minutes until it's thick
  5. You can taste the sauce and always put more salt if you want, or if it's too salty just dissolve with some water and cook for another 5 minutes
  6. Serve on top of your fluffy basmati rice

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It’s super delicious! I sprinkled some cayenne pepper on top because I love spicy food. The way all of these flavors meet is extraordinary. The real taste of natural food.

Have a good day guys, see you soon!

 

 

Why Vegan? Alex @plantifulalexandra

Hello guys! I missed you in the last few days, my schedule was a bit busier than usual, so I haven’t posted anything yesterday. But here I am, with another interview for our new category “Why Vegan?”. We have already featured some amazing posts with very influential vegan bloggers, so you can have a look at them as well. They are helping me in presenting the veganism as something completely natural and there’s no need to argue about it.

Amber Locke @rawveganblonde

Saskia Swanson @voilasassi

Michelle Cehn @worldofvegan

Ami @the_sunkissed_kitchen

Today’s guest is Alexandra @plantifulalexandra. She gave us an amazing interview and we’re very happy to share it with you guys!

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When did you become vegan and what made you do it?
I went vegan pretty much overnight in March 2015 100% for ethical reasons, as I didn’t want to support all this animal cruelty anymore.
I also care about our planet and animal agriculture is one of the main reasons for the environmental issues we face today. Just after going vegan I found out about all the health benefits it brings. I’ve always been interested in a healthy lifestyle and thought I already eat healthily until I found out that animal products are not healthy for you at all.
How did this change you – physically and mentally?
 
Veganism cured my unhealthy relationship with food. I’ve struggled my eating habits and even an eating disorder for a big part of my life. Even when this phase was over I still sometimes had unhealthy thoughts when eating a little too much or too unhealthy. Now that I’m vegan I know that I put good foods into my body and don’t need to worry much anymore about my weight as I keep it so easily these days even with eating a lot more food than in the past. And even if I eat a little too much or unhealthy: I do not contribute to animal suffering with unhealthy vegan foods so this automatically makes me so much happier and relaxed as I think “ok, this may not be the best for my body but hey – I’m not hurting anyone else”.
Veganism made me more conscious and positive. I now have a vision of what I want my life to look like and am willing to make changes to achieve my goals and leave my current unfulfilling life behind. I guess this more positive and relaxed attitude also has to do with not putting products anymore that come from animal suffering and are full of antibiotics, hormones, fear and stress.
Veganism made me a minimalist. With becoming more conscious, I also noticed how much stuff I have, like how many clothes there are in my wardrobe for example and that I don’t need this to be happy. I believe that all these topics like veganism, minimalism, health, getting out of the typical 9-5 work system etc. are connected and once you get into one of the topics, you automatically will think about the others at some point.
Veganism gave me purpose. In the past, I often felt so lost in life, I questioned why I’m even here, what the purpose of my life is. Today I feel like I found my purpose which is to contribute to make this world a better place with spreading the vegan message, to be a good example by trying to live a life that harms other living beings as well as our planet as little as possible and to just become the best version of myself that I can possibly be. Today I don’t feel that my life is just about me anymore but about so much more than that. I don’t think anymore “oh what difference can I as a single person actually make” but I now understand that every single person can contribute to making positive changes in the world and that noone is unimportant when it comes to the bigger picture. All positive changes started with a few people taking the first steps and then many others following their footsteps.
Physically I feel a lot better as well. As I said, it’s so much easier nowadays to keep a steady weight. I don’t gain weight as easily as I did in the past although I eat a bigger amount of food which makes me happy. My body also feels fitter and healthier, my digestion got better and I just feel lighter somehow. I’m not feeling as stuffed and tired anymore after big meals. Even if I have a huge amount of food I feel very full for about half an hour but then that feeling is gone. Probably as my body doesn’t need that much time and energy to digest animal products which takes so much longer than digesting plant foods.
What is your advice to the new vegans?
Stay vegan, it’s worth it! And it’s not as difficult as you might think. It’s not expensive, you will not suffer from malnutrition with eating healthy foods, people will accept it over time,.. and if you fear missing your favourite foods: There’s a vegan version of pretty much ANYTHING nowadays and so many good recipes!
I actually have a category on my blog talking about the main reasons for people not going vegan or for new vegans struggling and worrying:
It’s possible that you eat something non-vegan on purpose or accidentally again. If this happens, don’t beat yourself up, this doesn’t make you a bad person! It’s better to eat something non-vegan now and then than to fully go back to a non-vegan diet. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Some people like me go vegan overnight, for others it’s a long progress that takes some time. If you went vegan for health or weight reasons, I’d recommend you to have a look at the ethical side of it as well, I believe that this is what makes people stay vegan. Once you understand that it’s not just about you but about other living beings, you start to think differently, you don’t want to contribute to animal suffering anymore.
If you want to learn more about the ethical side of veganism and also need some visualisation, I recommend you to watch Earthlings. I believe it’s the best documentary out there showing the truth. I have to admit that until today I have not fully watched it, for me it was just to hard and I couldn’t stop crying. I recommend anyone to watch it anyway.. For the health and environmental side I can recommend the documentaries “Forks over Knifes” & “Cowspiracy”.
There are also a lot of good bloggers or youtubers out there from whom you can learn and don’t hesitate to reach out to them if you need help and advice.

We have nothing else to say, we can only show you the recipe that she sent us.

Chocolate Coconut Oatmeal

Ingredients: 1 banana, 50-80g oats, 1-2tbsp raisins, 1tbsp flaxseeds, 3tbsp shredded coconuts, coconut flakes, 1tbsp maple syrup, 2tbsp cacao powder, plant milk, water

Instructions: Mash the banana and put it in a pot together with the oats, raisins, flaxseeds and shredded coconuts. Add as much plant milk and/or water as needed until everything is covered. Cook the oatmeal until it’s warm and creamy, put it in a bowl and top it with the coconut flakes. You can add other toppings you like such as fruit, nuts, chocolate, nut butter.. as well.


We want to thank Alexandra for taking part in our vegan journey and thank you for reading our new post!

See you soon guys!

Why Vegan? Amber Locke @rawveganblonde

Happy Monday guys! It’s another great day and there’s another fresh post for you.

We’ve been pretty active lately on our website, and there are many things going on – we are posting lots of vegan recipes and we’re also sharing interviews with very influential food bloggers about the benefits of being vegan.

Today’s guest is Amber Locke @rawveganblonde! She is amazing! I mean… wow.. take a look at her photography and her unique style! Her first book ‘Norish’ was published in the UK in March 2016 and in the US in September 2016. Her second book ‘Savour’ was published in the UK in January 2017 and in the US in February 2017, both books will publish in Italy, France, Poland and Spain in Spring 2017.

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We asked her our usual questions and here’s what she had to say.

WHEN DID YOU BECOME VEGAN AND WHAT MADE YOU DO IT? 

I first become interested in the ‘raw vegan’ life style about 4 years ago and decided to try it out as an experiment but after a few days it made me feel so amazing that I just carried on! I now eat about an 80% raw diet depending on the season; more raw foods in the Spring/Summer and more cooked foods in the Autumn/Winter and also adjust my diet to how I’m feeling or what physical activity I’m doing.

HOW DID THIS CHANGE YOU – PHYSICALLY AND MENTALLY?

We’re all encouraged to incorporate more fruit and vegetables into our diets and in their raw form they’re typically more nutrient-dense, alkalizing and easier to digest so they feed and nourish your body with pure, living, high-vitality foods which, from my experience, it absolutely loves!

As well the fantastic health benefits eating raw it also gives you incredible energy, improved mental clarity and a general feeling of calmness, harmony and well-being – so, for me, this really is ‘feel-good’ food.

WHAT IS YOUR ADVICE TO THE NEW VEGANS?

I think with any new style of diet/eating you need to listen to your own body and see how it responds, regardless of any trends or advice you receive. It’s ultimately what food makes YOU feel great, not anyone else. Also be prepared to give it time, not everyone experiences immediate effects (both good or bad) so be patient and be observant for any fluctuations in your mood, weight, skin, energy levels etc.

And if you do fancy giving the raw food lifestyle a try then it’s as simple as incorporating more raw fruits and veg into your diet be it in the form of juices, smoothies or salads etc. and you don’t have to be 100% fully-raw to feel the benefits – just starting with one raw meal a day is a great way to put yourself on the highway to super-health and happiness!


We always ask our guests to give us a recipe, just because we want you to get inside their heads as well. The first impressions of someone’s food speaks a lot about their personality.

Have a look at her style.

CURRIED COCONUT NOODLES

VEGETABLE NOODLES WITH A CREAMY CURRIED COCONUT SAUCE

Serves 3-4

 

This salad is a great if you’re craving a spicy creamy curry but don’t want the heaviness of a traditional take away version. The sauce is rich yet fresh-tasting and can even be gently warmed if you don’t fancy eating the whole dish cold.

 

The tender vegetable noodles provide bulk and texture without added stodginess and the sweet corn kernels give little busts of sweetness. The vegetable noodles can be warmed up too, either by plunging very briefly into boiling salted water and then draining thoroughly or steam-sautéed in a wok or large frying pan.

 

NB: Turmeric has powerful ant-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and combining it with a good grating of fresh black pepper increases it’s bio-availability to your body.

 

SALAD

3 green courgettes (or mix of yellow and green)

2 sweet potatoes

1 large carrots

2 cobs fresh sweet corn

200g fresh peas or sugar snap peas

 

SAUCE

1” piece fresh turmeric or 2 tsp ground turmeric

1tsp grated fresh ginger

Small clove garlic

1 limes + 2 lemongrass stalks (tender inside part)

Half a green chilli

1tsp curry powder (medium hot)

1 banana shallots

1 fresh young coconut (or 200ml coconut milk, 300ml coconut water and 150g unsweetened desiccated coconut) + coconut shavings

Large handful fresh herbs (such as coriander, parsley, rosemary, oregano, thyme etc.)

Salt and pepper

 

Make the curried coconut sauce by blending together the meat and milk of a fresh coconut (or alternatively the coconut water, coconut milk and desiccated coconut) with the shallots, green chilli, ginger, lemon grass, garlic, juice and zest of the lime, curry powder and turmeric using a high speed blender and season to taste. The sauce should be creamy and silky smooth.

 

Cut the courgettes, carrots and sweet potatoes into long noodles using a julienne peeler (or grate), cut the sugar snap peas into fine diagonal shreds and cut the sweet corn kernels from the cobs. Place all the vegetables into a large bowl and pour over the curried coconut sauce. Mix well and sprinkle over some chopped fresh herbs and a little shaved fresh coconut. Leave to marinate for 30 minutes for the noodles to soften slightly then serve with some fresh limes to squeeze over and sprinkle over some coconut shavings.


That was all from our amazing guest today! We are very happy that we made this happen.

Thank you for being with us and see you soon!

Three Ingredient Vegan Pancake Sandwiches with Forest Fruit Salsa

Hello guys! How is everyone doing?

We have to end this week with a delicious meal! We have prepared for you a very easy three-ingredient pancakes sandwiches with forest fruit salsa. And yes, it’s vegan. The things you’re using to make it are completely natural and delicious. If you want to know more about the benefits of being vegan you can have a look at some of our interviews in our new category “Why Vegan?”. We are interviewing super influential vegan food bloggers about the good things in that type of eating. Use your time wisely and educate yourself about the better way of nourishment for your body. Not only you will normalize your weight, but you will feel good as well.

To me, personally, being vegan has changed a lot. I’ve been saying no to animal products for the last month a half and this has been one of the most interesting decisions in my life. It changed the way I look and the way I think about the World around me. It has changed my blog idea as well and the people that I started approaching are a very good connection to this new style. I will keep doing it, just because the food is really tasty and the choice is very big. Have a look at some of our latest recipes and share them with your friends.

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So, now that you know more about this topic – let me show you how to spoil yourself with this beauties.

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Three Ingredient Vegan Pancake Sandwiches with Forest Fruit Salsa
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
Ingredients
  • For the pancake mix
  • 4 ripe bananas
  • 50 ml of maple syrup
  • 50 gr of pure oats
  • For the fruit salsa:
  • blueberries
  • strawberries
  • blackberries
  • coconut flakes
  • chia seeds
Instructions
  1. Mash the bananas and mix in the maple and oats
  2. Depending on the consistency, you can add some more maple to have it more liquid, or you can add more oats to thicken it up
  3. Cook them on a very hot pan with a little bit of oil, so they don't stick to it
  4. One pancake takes about 3 minutes each side
  5. For the fruit salsa, you just need to cut in very small pieces all of the fruits and mix them with the other salsa ingredients
  6. Now you are ready to serve them

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It’s very nice to start your day with this gorgeous breakfast. It’s super nutritious and very healthy. There’s nothing in this recipe that will harm you in any way.

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I recommend that you have it with a glass of freshly squeezed orange juice with a hint of lemon – so refreshing.

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It’s time to say goodbye to this week and start the new one with a smile – let’s have fun!

Stay with us in the following week for more amazing interviews and tasty vegan ideas.

 

Why Vegan? Saskia Swanson @voilasassi

Hello guys, and happy Saturday! The time has come for our new interview in “Why Vegan?“.

So far we heard from Michelle Cehn @worldofvegan and Ami @the_sunkissed_kitchen.

They both gave really nice information and very good vegan recipes, so it’s worth spending some time on reading them by clicking on the links on top.

Today’s guest is Saskia Swanson @voilasassi! Her photography is great and her recipes are really creative and they all look very tasty. Make sure that you follow her on Instagram.

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I will now show you what she had to say about “Why Vegan?”

When did you become vegan and what made you do it?

I became vegan about 2,5 years ago because my gallbladder was irritated and inflamed. The doctor wanted to remove it but I wanted to keep my gallbladder since it is an important organ and has a reason for being in my body.

He then told me, I would have to stop eating animal fats and also be careful with my fat intake in general. That was my call back then and now I am doing it for way more reasons than just my own health. I also do it for the planet, the animals etc. It has been the best decision of my life (after having kids of course)

How did this change you – physically and mentally?

I used to be in a lot of pain and aches daily. My bones, muscles and everything was kind of hurting. The doctors did not know what was wrong and put the diagnose fibromyalgia into the room (which has by the way never really been tested).

After a few months of being vegan, I could feel such a huge difference and mostly all pain has been gone since then. As far as it comes to mentally, it changed my whole perspective of life and turned me into a much more caring, loving human being. It taught me what truly matters and how every decision we make, affects not only our own life but also this planet.

What is your advice to the new vegans?

My advice to new vegans is : You can’t change your whole lifestyle and diet and expect everything to taste the same! There will be things tasting differently and you will come across food that you have never heard of before but that will change after a few months. Look for people that are on the same road as you are or even the ones that are a bit ahead of you, so you can follow their advice and get a little help if needed.

Check your reasons for going vegan! If you do it because everybody is doing it and it has been becoming a trend, you will most likely not be able to make it long. If you are aware of the major changes it will make for you healthwise, that you save animals with every time you don’t consume dairy or meat and you contribute to a peaceful and loving future for your kids, you will have a lot more strength to put up with all the difficulties (for example your family making fun of you or discussions with friends).


The recipe that she wants to share with you guys is for Vegan Pasta Salad with Basil-Cashew Cream.

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Ingredients
  • 350g gluten free pasta
  • 300g fresh basil
  • 100g pine nuts
  • 150g cashews, soaked in water for at least 3 hours
  • 3 cloves of garlic olive oil to cover them
  • 80ml water
  • 10-12 sun dried tomatoes in oil ( one glass should work)
  • salt and pepper to season
Directions
  • Step 1 Bring water to a boil and cook noodles and preheat oven to 200 C.
  • Step 2 Meanwhile peel garlic and put the cloves in a small baking dish, covering it up with olive oil.
  • Step 3 Roast garlic cloves in the oven until they are golden (takes about 10-15 min but you need to check on it from time to time because every oven is a bit different)
  • Step 4 While garlic is roasting, heat up a pan on high heat and add pine nuts. Roast until slightly golden. Set aside.
  • Step 5 Once garlic is ready, add it together with the olive oil to a highspeed blender together with the cashews, basil and water.
  • Step 6 Blend until creamy and smooth.
  • Step 7 Pour basil-cashew sauce to a big bowl and add noodles and all other ingredients. Season with salt and pepper and garnish with more basil and cashew parmesan

I hope that you got some more useful information from another very good point of view and the idea of veganism is becoming more clear to you. Our goal is to show you that there is nothing bad in that – it’s even good. It’s nothing to be ashamed of, and of course there’s nothing to show off with. Let’s do good together!

Thank you for being with us today, enjoy your weekend and we’ll be back soon!

 

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