My Thoughts on Risky Play

If you have known me, you will know that I allow my children risky play more often than not. Long time followers might have seen my 2 year old RoRo with a cutlass and big two with sheath knives. Yes we have had accidents but nothing that a plaster or a kiss couldn’t fix. They still remember the adventure more than the little boo-boos and the infamous A & E trips. .
.
But I wasn’t like this all the time and every now and again my heart jumps when I see Reuben dive down the promenade straight into a sea of seaweed but I quickly navigate the risks around. .
.
When you have three kids who love adventure and adrenaline it is hard to keep on top of them and you will find yourself saying ‘NO’ all day. So I had to loosen up a little. And it has been very rewarding for both parties. I have noticed kids often do a risk-assessment of their own if given the freedom. For instance, RoRo chose not to jump off the promenade, “I am too small”, Reuben chose to stay away from RoRo the whole time he was holding a cutlass and RoRo never brought the cutlass indoors…none of those things were prompted by us. .
.
The lessons I have learnt is to carry extra set of clothes, a towel, snacks, water, sweeties and plasters (That is if we are driving). .

Do Homeschooling Children Learn Anything?

Fox skull found at farm school

People often wonder, ” Do homeschooled children actually learn anything?” .
.
We live in a world where we have been conditioned to believe for generations that all forms of learning only happens in a classroom. That, if you did not learn within the four walls of a school then that education is not valuable.


That might have been the case and there might have been a time when schools were necessary to keep children out of factories, begging on the streets and what have you. And today, it is more to do with childcare than education.


But do me a favour and look around you. We live in an age of technology and information. With the right guidance and resources, children can learn anything they want to that is appropriate for their age and capabilities. This is not to say that one can enter into a surgery without attending any medical college. But as far as learning is concerned, a lot can be achieved from visiting the library, the local farm, museum, beaches and meeting people and interacting with people who work there everyday.

With no bells ringing to say when to start and stop your learning, children get a chance to delve deep into a topic they connect with. Hopefully they will remember what they learn better than I can remember trigonometry (in school). I think I forgot most formulas etc as soon as grades were out. Is that the kind of learning we want for our children?

If considering homeschooling, remember it is harder to stop them from learning in a free environment.

Delaying Formal Education

We have decided to NOT introduce formal education to our three year old until he is six, keeping in line with what is a mainstream practice in many Scandinavian countries. But it is such a privileged topic that I simply do not discuss it here as often, acknowledging the fact that many have to send their children to school. (I speak from my own experience)
.
.
So when Weronika from @multiculturalmotherhood asked me to shed light on why I chose to delay formal education I thought I’d write down some of my personal reflections.
.
.
> 15 minutes of lunch break vs an hour of read-aloud with his meals.
> Regimented academic study vs creative play and healthy physical activity
> Tracing pictures vs playing in a den under my work desk.
> Keeping tidy (frustratingly so) vs painting all over himself.
> Reciting the alphabet by rote vs making songs about everything and playing word games….
> Toy tools and craft work forced by a teacher vs cutting veggies, playing with spices and stirring a big bowl of dal with his mumma.
.
.
There is also no shortage of academic papers detailing concern from educationalists about the damage a less-than holistic approach to early learning is having on children.
.
.
Quality time for us during which I am not nagging him to wear his uniform, finish his homework or packing his lunch boxes is also a bonus.
.

..
What are your views on delayed formal education? Or do you think it is best to teach them early?

On Raising Vegan Children – Q & A

A picture from our visit to India almost 2 years ago.

My kids aged 13, 11 and 3 years old and I have been vegan for over 3 years now. My youngest has never consumed any animal products nor has he seen a doctor in his life, credit to his plant based lifestyle and extended breastfeeding, I say.

The word vegan makes a lot of people uncomfortable, I have been there myself so I empathise. Having said so it is Veganuary ( a campaign drawn to encourage people to try veganism for a month at the beginning of the year and take it from there) and I thought I will try and answer the most commonly asked questions in the hope that it might help those in doubt or need that last push to take the plunge.

Without much ado, here we go….

What is Veganism?

Veganism is a lifestyle wherein an individual chooses to not consume any animal product or byproducts. A vegan lifestyle avoids eating dairy products, meat, poultry, seafood, honey, bee pollen or eggs. This lifestyle also avoids the use of leather, wool or silk. Some vegans may also go as far as avoiding products that were tested on animals as much as possible.

Do you children feel that this lifestyle has been imposed upon them?

My eldest two were 10 yrs and 8 yrs old when they went vegan. They made an informed choice and had no obligation to go vegan, given they had a non-vegan ally in their dad. So they could have chosen to stay non-vegan if they wanted to. And they can always go back to their old lifestyle anyday.

As far as my 3 year old is concerned, he has never tasted animal products so in his case, a vegan lifestyle is imposed on him only as much as other parents impose meat eating on their children. I do not think any parent asks their 6 month old if they’d like a sweet potato or sweet bread (it is a kind of offal I think) if you know what I mean!

Is it hard being married to a person who is not vegan?

When I married my husband I was not vegan myself. My love for him wouldn’t have changed just because I chose a different lifestyle. Veganism is like an awakening. I believe in giving it time. And if it never happens, it isn’t my place to judge. It is harder for my husband to be outnumbered as a non-vegan at home than it is for me to be a vegan. It is getting especially hard with our 3 year old asking questions about his eating habits. My husband has come a long way and he actually doesn’t really consume animal products as much as he used to. At home we only cook and eat Vegan food. And if he fancy’s an egg for breakfast he cooks it himself and sources it from what he may consider as the most ethical source.

What do your children think about their dad consuming animal products in front of them?

I have raised my children to be very compassionate and inclusive towards others. My older two believe in choice and that everybody has their own journey to make.

The questions have started coming from a 3 year old though. ‘Dad, pork is from a pig. Maybe that pig did not want to die?’

‘Mum why does daddy eat meat?’

I actually do not have one answer fits all for these kind of questions. I simply say that, “meat eaters probably do not know that animals get hurt and have to die before they are turned into meat. Maybe one day they will find that out like us and they may change.” That is the best I can do for now and I hope he will find answers to these himself.

What is wrong with dairy ? The cows need milking or else they may get mastitis. Aren’t we doing them a favour?

No. The need to milk her is totally man-made. If a calf is allowed to drink the milk that is designed for his/her needs only, there will be no need to milk a mother cow. In the wild, many different animals lactate and they all manage absolutely fine without any human intervention, barring a few exceptions.

The entire dairy industry is questionable. Every act from impregnating a cow, to separating her calf in the first few days of infancy to then sending the calf to a slaughterhouse, especially if it is a male calf irks me. The female will be raised just like her mother for dairy. And the poor mother? She gets sent to the slaughterhouse too before she has even lived half of her life, because of the poor milk production.

Do vegans need to supplement?

In my personal opinion, vegans or non-vegans all need to take some kind of supplements given the poor quality of food in general. One of the most difficult nutrients for vegan to retrieve from their diet includes B12 and though one can get all their vitamins and other nutrients from perfectly designed and planned diet, with children and their fussiness, I play safe and give my children Vitamin D, B12, Iron (occasionally) and multivitamin gummies, bear in mind that I supplemented my children even before we went vegan.

Is a vegan lifestyle expensive?

It can be. If you want to eat high quality mock meat or processed food, or ready vegan meals you better be loaded. But eating wholefoods like lentils, legumes, vegetables, fruits etc is not very expensive, atleast not for an average middle class family. Eating nuts and seeds is also an important part of a balanced vegan diet, which I appreciate can be expensive but if you cut out meat from your diet and buy groceries in bulk, in the long run it works out cheaper.

If you extend veganism towards your wardrobe, make up etc. Again, the more ethical you choose, vegan or non-vegan things get a bit expensive. I stick to second hand shopping and depend largely on hand me downs for my children. I only buy when I have eliminated all other options.

Isn’t it hard to be vegan ?

It depends. Starting anything new can be challenging. My biggest challenge when I became vegan was to prove to people that veganism matters and that it isn’t some hippy-dippy shit and that there is science to back it up too. To convince that I, as a loving and caring mother to my children, was not putting their health at risk because of my moral values was challenging. But now everybody gets it and given the current climate crisis etc, people welcome our lifestyle easily. Also to be noted that, hosting a vegan guest is much easier now than it was ever before.

Another hard aspect for many might be the cooking aspect. If you can’t afford ready meals or do not want to consume processed food then you need to or would want to know how to cook wholefood ingredients. It isn’t hard but it needs practice nonetheless. Plenty of recipe books are out there or youtube videos to help you out.

As far as not eating meat or seafood etc is concerned, it is all in the mindset. Once you watch videos of slaughterhouses or how animals are treated in the slaughterhouses, I bet you wouldn’t want to eat meat again. As for me, I grew up eating a lot of vegan meals as part of my diet. A lot of Indian meals, which is what I grew up eating, is by default vegan like chana masala, aloo gobi, tofu and soy etc. Same goes for my children. So choosing to eat more of those was an easy shift.

But what about organic or free range meat? What about bio-dynamic meat?

I think that is even worse. If an animal was well looked after and was treated very humanely throughout its life, then the animal is likely to put more value on its life and taking that away, to me, seems wrong. The worst kind of worse.

I have seen you and your children wear woolen clothes?

It is true! I am not a purist. We do wear wool but strictly second hand, vintage or hand me downs. If I ever own a new woolen jumper, it is likely to be a gift from somebody who doesn’t quite understand the whole concept of veganism. But I will never put in my own money to buy a pair of brand new leather shoes or a bag or a silk saree or a woolen jumper.

Vegan and sustainable clothing etc are very expensive and I personally cannot always afford it. Also a lot of vegan clothing is made out of synthetic fibres (that are harmful to the environment and if mass produced, it is likely to be exploitative a.k.a not fairtrade) which I do not like personally. So if I had a choice between a brand new synthetic jumpers made by underpaid, abused workers somewhere in India or Bangladesh or a second hand woolen jumper. I would always choose the more breathable, natural fabric.

Humans have been eating meat forever, we used to be hunter gatherer, we are made to eat meat. We also have canines?

In early evolution, man did everything they could to survive. Historically, humans did a lot of questionable things. The point isn’t in the fact that humans used to hunt and eat meat, the point is in the fact that in today’s world, can we, especially in the first world countries justify farming and killing of animals when there is enough plant based food available?

I honour the fact that there are still many communities around the world who largely depend on seafood and meat due to the lack of agricultural land and what have you. They aren’t doing anything that they cannot justify. But I do not think, I, as a middle class privileged person from a first world country can justify mindless consumption of animal products.

As far as canines are concerned, the hippos have the largest canine in the entire wild world, yet they seem to thrive on plants. I hope that answers that question.

I hope I have answered some of the important questions. If you have any more please comment below and I will answer as promptly as I can.

Jess’s Moroccan Curry

Today’s contribution is by ‘forest school Jess’ (that is how I have known her). She is one of the most down to earth person. If you are into photography, you will love her handle (@woodlands.and.waves). Her landscape and wildlife photos are just the best. I do love the look of her life.

Here is what she has to say…

Hi I’m jess but most people around here know me as forestschooljess. I am in my happy place (well second happy place, because I’m not prepared to put photos of me in the bath on instagram!) Eating my most favourite snack – dried figs dipped in almond butter (do it, especially in the bath & thank me later)
This recipe kind of sums up my approach to climate change – I am only one person but I have to do what I can. Many of the ingredients are grown in my own garden or from the local farmers market – ‘dig for victory’ guys, only this threat is bigger than we’ve ever faced before. Growing your own is also (as I discovered) a lot of fun. The herbs and veggies used can totally be seasonal or from your frozen harvests, it’s the moroccan flavours which bring it all together.

It’s also a low waste meal as I get 4 portions from this recipe (that’s 2 days in our house!) With no plastic either (ingredients came loose or in recycleable cardboard, jars, cans or tins) so its a big hitter in ‘save the environment’ bingo! Why yes the long dark nights do whizz by in this house 😂

The other personal commitment I have made is not to fly abroad. As we live in the Highlands of Scotland and I’m a fully fledged foodie, if I want exotic, flavourful cuisine It’s coming out of my kitchen! And so this recipe was born. Hope you enjoy it!

Ingredients:

Jess’s herby Moroccan(ish) curry

Need: frying pan, oven dish with a lid, knives & chopping board

Vegan recipe – use faux chicken pieces, marinated &/or fried tofu or just load up on different veggies (mange tout/green beans/peas/small broccoli florets/sweet potato cubes cut small etc)

  • Coconut oil – 2 teaspoons for frying
  • Large Red onion x 1
  • Garlic cloves (large) – grated – x3
  • Ras El Hanout spice blend (this can be found in most big supermarkets – it means ‘best of the shop’ and would be an individual spice blend made in Arabic spice shops) – 2 table spoons
  • I add these Optional additions to the ras el hanout – Turmeric – 1 teaspoon Cinnamon – 1 teaspoon – grated nutmeg – 1/2 teaspoon
  • Harissa paste – 1 teaspoon (spicy – reduce if children/you not into really spicy food)
  • Big handfuls of fresh chopped:- coriander, mint, sage
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • Himalayan salt (to season or omit) – regular sea salt is ok
  • Black pepper (to season or omit)
  • Splash of apple cider vinegar (pref with the mother) if you have it this really adds a good tang but not essential
  • Cous cous to serve

Method:

  • Melt coconut oil in large frying pan
  • Preheat oven to 150 degree (fan)
  • Create spice blend in a bowl if adding extras
  • Fry off ‘chicken’ or tofu pieces 
  • Turn down heat and add spice mixture coat pieces in the warmed spice mix – enjoy the yummy smells! Don’t let spices burn – add more oil or turn down heat if nec.
  • Add to a Pyrex dish with a lid and set aside.
  • In the pan you’ve just used add the chopped onion and fry until translucent – (add more coconut oil or turn down heat if sticking)
  • Add the trimmed green beans & any other veggies (I love mange tout & petit pois)
  • Stir in some more spice mix
  • Grate 3 cloves of garlic into pan
  • Stir fry over a medium heat until smell of garlic comes through – 1minute ish
  • Reduce heat and add coconut milk
  • Stir until all melted together
  • Add any remaining spice mix – stir
  • Add chopped herbs mix
  • Stir
  • Add good splash of ACV and any salt/pepper seasoning – taste it and see if you need it.
  • Pour over ‘chicken’ pieces (or if using a root veg instead just add to the pan, stir and transfer to the Pyrex or oven pot with a lid)
  • Oven on 150 fan for 20-30 mins

5 mins before serving make plain cous cous – packet instructions

Serve and enjoy! 

If you like our recipes and try it, please do not forget to like and comment below. You can also tag us on Instagram with the hashtag #plateplantplanef

Raising Eco-Conscious Children

At the Global Climate Strike

I grew up in the concrete jungle of Mumbai. My daily encounters with nature were limited to the plants on the balcony, street dogs, cats and the cows – yes, also in the street; sacred and sniffing the petrol fumes. These were the limited encounters of a grimy, colourful metropolis but they made me very happy. We belonged to a very humble middle class family, who had just enough to keep us afloat. That, in India, meant a different thing to what it might mean in England: it meant water restrictions, limited hours of electricity, and bartering hard in the local markets. 

Processed with VSCO with preset

As a result my parents made me aware of the importance of not letting things go to waste early on in life. Though it was parsimony rather than environmentalism that was the motivation, they were sowing the seeds of environmental consciousness in me subconsciously through their values. Later on in life, when I met my husband, he introduced me to a new world of environmentalism: he was and still is, intensely interested in how public policy can drive positive environmental change.

Over the years we’ve become a sort of micro-macro double-act, often frustrating each other along the way, but also learning from each other, so raising children to be environmentally conscious came naturally, even if that is/was initially by osmosis; rather than through something didactic. 

Anthropocentrism and the Microcosmos

With the environmental crisis worsening, we’ve been talking about this more. One conclusion we’ve come to, based on both of our experiences – and the ongoing need for a shift away from a deeply entrenched anthropocentric mindset, or the species-egoism of humans – is to start by gently encouraging an imagination that transcends anthropocentrism. An imagination that recognises there is a tiny community among the ants or the right for a beetle’s home under a stone to go undisturbed: certainly not for any small thing to be stamped on or squashed for fundamentally no reason. 

Respect, in short, for non-human animals. 

Processed with VSCO with preset

Put a secular or spiritual spin on that as you see fit. But escorting the wasp back outside in a jar where possible, gently “finding a new home” for the spider (even if beyond small eyes it’s dumped fairly unceremoniously out of the window; hey, we’re all human… ) is a simple start to inculcating reverence or respect for non-human lifeforms; empathy requires imagination – the imagination of someone’s suffering or situation –  and the imagination to understand that there is a whole other realm of important life, animal communities going on all around us even in cities is important. 

My husband remembers vividly being told firmly but gently by his grandmother after picking up a rock in the garden to find all sorts of bugs and centipedes to put it down carefully again, because “that’s their home and you’re disturbing them; they live there…” She was right. 

(Mosquitos, perhaps, are the one exception to this rule: squash the little blood-suckers mercilessly!)

Their World

I asked my children if they considered themselves to be lovers of nature and if they have a sense of responsibility towards it? A genuine question. Yes, was the answer and to the question of why, they said simply through observation, experience and exposure. Whether it’s sitting quietly under a tree, walking the dogs or rescuing an injured bird, somehow it’s all added up. I hope it grows stronger; through a love for the natural world, not fear. They are aware of the climate crisis, but a drumbeat of doom isn’t the answer for me. I want to see them inspired. One of my husband’s friends builds low-maintenance seawater greenhouses, through which crops can be grown in arid regions using small desalination plants powered by renewable energy; I want them to see and by inspired by such things. Meanwhile, the kids and I live a plant-based lifestyle (husband remains omnivorous), we buy second-hand clothes and we are careful with our water and energy usage – using a tariff that involves renewables only. We avoid plastic and we recycle whenever we can, but not militantly, just with a general sense of awareness not to tread too heavily on the planet.

Ultimately, I think as a parent who wants to raise environmentally aware children, one must keep educating oneself and simply try to educate in turn through best practice. This doesn’t mean you have to share every big of new information with your child to keep them up to date with your finding but children are very curious. At different phases of their lives, they will ask questions. To be able to answer those questions will not only empower you but will give your children tools to understand and communicate the same to others. Children can sometimes catch you off-guard and that is ok. Whoever said answers cannot be found together? When your children are as old as mine, you will realise they start teaching you a few things too. 

That is when you know, you did something right. 

This essay was originally written for the initiative ‘Parents of the Planet A’.

Coffee Chocolate Cake #PlatePlantPlanet

Processed with VSCO with preset

Today’s recipe is contributed by my son, Reuben who is nearly a 13 years old. He is a keen baker and a creative recipe creator. This last weekend he made a delicious coffee cake (his way of consuming coffee because he isn’t allowed to drink it yet, but he loves the smell). He insisted I share a photo of the cake on my instagram to see the reaction his cake received. And to his surprise it was received very enthusiastically.

So on popular demand, Reuben has generously agreed to share his recipe here on my blog. I will keep it simple and add no, ‘here is what he had to say’…because he said nothing but, ‘yes its ok if you share the recipe’. I will not be adding his photo because I didn’t get his permission.

Ingredients:

2. 5 cups of self raising flour

1/2 cup of cacao/cocoa powder

1 cup of sugar

3/4th cup of margarine

2tbsp of baking powder

1cup (maybe more) soy milk or milk of choice

1/2 cup of strong brewed coffee or double shot of espresso

1 big bar of dark chocolate

2 tsp of coconut cream or thick cream of choice

Method:

Preheat the oven at 150

Whisk sugar and margarine together. Add the flour and baking powder, coffee, cacao and milk and whisk again. Taste and add more coffee if need be. Add some more milk until you get the right consistency. Do not over whisk. Eggless cakes work best when not over mixed.

Once ready, pour in the cake batter in a lined tin and bake it for 20 to 30 minutes or until the skewer comes out clean. Once ready, let it sit on a rack to cool.

When the cake is completely cook, melt some chocolate with some cream to make the ganache. Drizzle it on top of the cake and serve.

If you like the recipe, please try it and let us know by leaving a comment below. If you are on instagram, please do not forget to take a photo and share it with us (@wildberriesandfables) using the hashtag #plateplantplanet.

Muringayilla Parippu #PlatePlantPlanet

Processed with VSCO with preset

We, Indians know and love our dal. Everyone has a unique way to cook it and therefore, you can never get bored of it. This recipe is very close to my heart for two reasons. One because it is contributed by my dearest friend Shweta (@timesofamma on instagram), who is an expat mother, a feminist, a writer and a good friend. Secondly, this recipe brings back childhood memories for me. As a kid I went to a Malayali (Kerelan) babysitter for a while and she used to make these dal that had a peculiar taste that I hadn’t managed to mimic until Shweta sent this recipe across. I can assure you, that it is a no fail recipe.

The only thing I changed in this recipe was that I replaced the moringa leaves with spinach as I couldn’t find moringa here.

Here is what Shweta had to say:

Processed with VSCO with preset

Muringayilla (Moringa Leaves) and parippu (dal) is one of those curries that are made quite often by Malayali grandmothers, fed to school children with rice, telling them that it will do wonders for their memory and make them grow tall and their bones stronger. This is not just an old wives tale. While drumsticks or Muringakaaya are widely known for their nutrients, so are the leaves. But it’s not the health benefits that attract me to the curry but the taste. The leaves have a subtle flavour which when blended with the Dal reminds me of home and simpler times, when the most complicated thing in my life used to be my trigonometry homework. The hint of chilly powder, the slight coarseness of the grated coconut and that unique flavour of cumin, all come together so harmoniously to create an effortless yet distinctive taste. Pour the slightly watery gravy on your rice, take a helping of cabbage thoran (side dish), a teaspoon of pickle and a dash of yoghurt. Whether you’re eating alone, sitting on the couch, as the TV blares on or even if you’re sitting with your loved ones, joking and catching up, the flavours will wrap you up in a warm homely embrace. And so to re-create those simpler days or simply recollect them if you are a Malayalee, here goes the recipe 

Muringayilla and Parippu

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Toor dal
  • 1 bunch Muringayilla (Leaves to be plucked off the stalks. Some grocers offer pre-plucked bunches.)
  • 1 tomato quartered 
  • ½ tsp Haldi (turmeric powder)
  • ½ tsp Chilli powder
  • One cup grated coconut (fresh or dessicated)
  • 1 tsp – Jeera (Cumin seeds)

Varavu (tempering)

  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 3 dried red chillies
  • 1 small onion sliced

Method:

Add three cups of water for the one cup of Dal and pressure cook with Haldi and chilli powder. This will take around 20-25 minutes.Once done, add the Muringayilla (which should have been washed and kept aside by this point)Add half-cup water per one cup of MuringayillaAlso add the quartered tomato.Mix and let it cook.Grind/Blend the coconut and Jeera coarsely and keep aside.When the Dal and Muringayilla start to boil, add the coconut and jeera blend.Stir and cook on medium heat, till it starts to boil. Switch off.Seasoning:In a frying pan, heat some oil. Once it starts smoking sputter mustard seeds.Add the red chillies and the sliced onion. A bunch of curry leaves if you have them. Saute for a bit. Switch off, pour over the Muringayilla and Dal and Voila! You’re done!

I hope you try and enjoy this recipe. If you do, please let us know how you liked it. If you happen to take a photo and share it on instagram, please do not forget to tag us (@wildberriesandfables) and use the hashtag #plateplantplanet

Peanut Butter Oreo Pie #PlatePlantPlanet

Today’s recipe is the BOMB!! Healthy and wholefood diet followers who do not agree with sugar, look away, right now please!!

This recipe is contributed by Laura, who is as lovely as it gets. She contacted me a while ago, wanting me to contribute to her magazine for home-schooling parents. I have absolutely loved using her magazine as my own personal creative outlet.

This recipe isn’t her own but for easy access, I googled it and I am attaching it below.

Here is what she had to say…

I found this recipe by Amrita founder of Crazy Vegan Kitchen via Pinterest very soon after I switched to a plant based diet. I love to cook but with three young kids time is of the essence when it comes to food preparation. This is the perfect minimum effort, maximum effect dessert.
It’s one of those rare recipes that really is as incredible as it looks. This pie is perfect for special occasions and I have had so many people compliment me on how amazing it tastes, I know this phrase is overused but you honestly wouldn’t think it was vegan unless you knew. It’s pretty heavy on the sugar so not one to eat all the time, although you’ll probably be tempted to. 
This pie is really quick and simple to make, with very few ingredients and no cooking involved. Sometimes I also like to whip up the peanut butter filling as a topping for chocolate cupcakes instead of icing.

Ingredients

  • Oreo Crust:
  • 7 oz Oreo Cookies
  • 1/4 cup Vegan Butter, melted
  • Peanut Butter Mousse Filling:
  • 3/4 cup Crunchy Peanut Butter
  • 1/4 cup Vegan Butter
  • 1/2 cup Fine Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Coconut Cream
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • Peanut Butter Chocolate Ganache:
  • 1 tablespoon Crunchy or Smooth Peanut Butter
  • 4 oz Vegan Dark Chocolate
  • 1/3 cup Coconut Cream
  • 1 tablespoon Peanut Oil
  • Extras:
  • Crushed Peanuts, for sprinkling

Instructions

  1. Make your Oreo Crust by blitzing the cookies in a food processor until they form fine crumbs. Pour in melted Vegan Butter and blitz till fully incorporated. Press crust into pie tin and freeze for 10 minutes whilst making filling.
  2. To make your filling, combine all the ingredients for the Peanut Butter Mousse in a bowl and whip with an electric mixer till light and fluffy. Pour mixture into frozen crust and spread out evenly. Freeze entire pie tin for an hour.
  3. Before taking your pie out of the freezer, prepare PB Chocolate Ganache.
  4. Chop chocolate and transfer to a bowl along with Peanut Butter. Heat Coconut Cream in a small saucepan till it simmers and then pour over chocolate/pb immediately. Stir till you have a smooth and glossy ganache. Add Oil into ganache and stir till fully incorporated. (I skipped this entire step)
  5. Pour ganache over set pie and spread/smoothen out. Sprinkle chopped or crushed peanuts on the surface of the ganache and leave pie in the fridge for an hour for ganache to set.
  6. Enjoy.

P:S: I made the pie the night before and in the morning took it out from the freezer and let it sit in the fridge all day. By the time it was evening, it was perfectly smooth and ready. Point being, you can make it days in advance and thaw it the day you want to serve it.

If you try this recipe, please let us know on instagram using the #plateplantplanet and if you are not on instagram just comment below and let us know if you liked our recipes.

Also, do not forget to tag us on @wildberriesandfables when you cook any plant based recipe.

Suran Tarkari/ Yam Curry #PlatePlantPlanet

Processed with VSCO with preset

Today’s recipe for #plateplantplanet is one from my childhood. Suran is a root vegetable, commonly found in India and Africa. It is a kind of a superfood especially for women. It helps in preventing anemia, helps with PMS, weight loss, skin purification etc.

I had forgotten about this vegetable because we don’t get them in the UK. Also, as a kid it wasn’t one of my favourites so I never missed it either. But when I found it in my local India shop, something in me wanted to try it again and this time around, as an adult I fell in love with it. And all three of my children love it.

I understand that these specialty ingredients can be quite expensive and not readily available in your local shops. So when you want to feed a family of 5 or 6, you want a healthier but affordable options.

You can easily replace suran with sweet potatoes, swede or any other root vegetable really. I have not tried it but I don’t see why mushrooms or even cauliflower wouldn’t work.

This is an easy curry made with a handful of ingredients and can be cooked in a big portion to feed a large family. The dominant flavours are that of cumin and ginger so be generous with those. I serve it with rice and a side salad of cut cucumbers, beetroot and radishes.

Ingredients: (Serves 3 – 4)

400 gms of Suran/Yam, diced (or vegetable of choice)

2 large potatoes, diced

2 tomatoes, chopped (or a handful of cherry tomatoes)

2 inches ginger (grated)

1 tbsp cumin seeds

2 tsp tumeric powder

3 tsp chilli powder (I use Kashmiri Chilli as it adds a vibrant colour without the heat)

1 tbsp coriander powder

2 tbsp Mustard oil (or vegetable oil will do)

Salt and Sugar to taste

Coriander, chopped (for garnish)

Method:

Heat the oil in the wok. Add cumin seeds and let it splatter. Once they start to brown, add the diced potatoes and let them cook for a bit until light brown. Now add all the spices along with the ginger. Give it a quick stir an add the tomatoes. Add a splash of water so as to avoid the spices to stick at the bottom of the wok and burn. Turn the heat to medium if need be. Once the tomatoes are a bit mushy, add the salt, sugar and suran. Give it a good mix and add a bit of water. Put a lid on and let it cook until the vegetables are thoroughly cooked. Keep checking every few minutes to add water if the curry is drying out. This curry is meant to be slightly juicy so don’t be stingy with the water. Once cooked, add some chopped up coriander and voila, serve with hot rice.

I hope you like the recipe and if you try this curry, please let me know by commenting below. If you are on instagram follow me on @wildberriesandfables and do not forget to tag us whenever you cook our recipes. Use the hashtag #plateplantplanet so I don’t miss any of your yummy plant based recipes.

Create your website at WordPress.com
Get started