30 September 2013


One more post before September ends, and this is just a basic hummus recipe. I know hummus can be bought anywhere, but by making it yourself it's fresh and you'll know what went into it. Hummus is a great chickpea dip for finger food and paste for veggie sandwiches and burgers and simply has to be a part of any vegan's or vegetarian's diet. I especially like a simple and light lunch of vegetable sticks and hummus as a dip.

As I use dried chickpeas for my hummus the preparation takes overnight, but it's totally worth the wait.


200g dried chickpeas
2 garlic cloves
1 lemon's juice
4tbsp olive oil
4tbsp water
1tsp paprika
1tsp cumin
1tsp salt


Cover the dried chickpeas with cold water and let them soak overnight. Then bring them to the boil. First heavily boil them for a couple of minutes and then let them boil slower for about one hour until they are soft. Stir occasionally.

Let the chickpeas cool and then continue with the preparations. Chop the garlic and squeeze the lemon juice into a bowl. Add the chickpeas and season with paprika, cumin and salt. Add the olive oil and water and puree into an even paste. Taste again and add more seasoning or more fluid if needed.

Drizzle little olive oil and paprika on the top for serving and that's it.

I will be posting dishes where I have used my hummus later. Until then, stay hungry!

Your VegHog

29 September 2013

Full English vegetarian breakfast 2.0

I am quite surprised that my most popular blog post so far is the one about full English vegetarian breakfast. You can read the original post here. I called today's post Full English vegetarian breakfast 2.0 because I wanted to revisit and improve my original post and make another English breakfast suggestion. This time I added a firm favourite to it: hash browns. These little fried potato cakes are lovely for breakfast.

The amount I cooked here will feed two very hungry adults.

Hash browns

This recipe makes six small hash browns.

300g potatoes grated
1 small onion
1 egg
1tsp salt
Ground black pepper
Vegetable oil for frying

Grate the potatoes and remove the excess fluid of them. I did this by pressing them in a potato ricer. If you use the smallest setting of the ricer, it won't press the grated potatoes through, but just squeezes the fluid out.

Chop the onion very finely and add it to the potatoes. Add the egg, salt and pepper and mix. I shaped the hash browns by using a small round cookie cutter. Place the cutter on a spatula, put the potato mix in there and press it firmly to shape. Then just slide the hash brown off the spatula straight into the pan.

Fry the hash browns on both sides until golden brown.

Cheese omelette

2 eggs
4tbsp milk
Little Double Gloucester cheese grated
Nettle salt (any other will do)
Ground black pepper
2-3 fresh basil leaves
Vegetable oil for frying

Mix all the ingredients together and fry the omelette on both sides at moderate heat.

Other components

1 can of baked beans in tomato sauce – The beans just need warming up in a saucepan.

Fried bread – Fry bread slices in little vegetable oil until crispy.

6 Cumberland vegetarian sausages – I just used ready made sausages from the shop. Bake them in the oven for a while.

Serve the breakfast with coffee or tea and orange juice. Then prepare to get full!

Your VegHog

28 September 2013

Lentil and aubergine veggie burgers

If you are a regular reader you know that I love to make different vegetarian burgers and here comes another variation of those. I altered slightly my original lentil burger recipe by adding an aubergine and served the patties with my swede and seed rolls that I published earlier this month and fried halloumi.

These are very easy to make, try them! This recipe makes a fairly big batch, but they are great to be frozen for a later use.


150ml green lentils
150ml red lentils
1 aubergine
1 onion
2 garlic cloves
1 green chili
3 eggs
1-2dl flour
2tbsp vegetable stock powder
4tbsp chopped fresh parsley
2tsp herb salt
2tsp ground black pepper
Vegetable oil for frying


Rinse and cook the lentils until they are soft. The green ones take slightly longer to boil soft, but it's nice to have a few firmer ones among them. I also add vegetable stock powder to the boiling water to add extra taste.

Chop the onion, garlic and chili. Grate the aubergine. Add these ingredients to the lentils once they are boiled and cooled.

Season the mix with parsley, herb salt and black pepper. Add the eggs and flour. You might need more or less flour to make the paste firm. It needs to have the right consistency so that you'll be able to make burger patties of it.

Heat a generous amount of vegetable oil in a pan to moderate heat. Shape burger patties of the lentil mix and fry them on both sides until they are fully cooked through and golden brown. After frying remove excess oil from the burgers with a kitchen roll.

Serve with a lovely roll, lettuce and fried halloumi and enjoy!

Your VegHog

26 September 2013

Meantime Brewing Company in London

A while ago I was able to take part in a brewery tour at the Meantime Brewing Company in Greenwich, London. Meantime brews quality craft beer and in their selection they have everything from Wheat Beer, Porter, Lager to India Pale Ale among others. As you may remember I'm not a massive beer drinker, but I very much enjoy their beers, especially the Pilsener, which reminds me of Germany.

During the brewery tour we learned about the international history of beer and of the brewery itself and were introduced to many of their beers. We were also offered actual barley, hops and malt to taste. There were even some hops pellets, which were rather strong and bitter in their taste, but it was fun tasting all those things. Then we were taken around the brewery while Meantime's beer brewing techniques were explained.

Not far from the brewery Meantime also has their pub The Old Brewery with a large beer garden and it's well worth a visit as well. You can also come across Meantime products in many other pubs, shops and food markets.

25 September 2013

Mini leek and new potato tarte tatin

I like savoury upside down pies a lot and this is one of my most recent creations. I think this is a very suitable dish for September as I used mini leeks and new potatoes cooked in fondant potato style.

I think it was easy to make, because there is no pastry making involved. This is how I made this tart.


320g puff pastry sheet
8-10 mini leeks
10-12 small new potatoes
A few sprigs of thyme
1tbsp vegetable stock powder
50g butter
1tsp salt
2tbsp sugar


Pre-heat the oven to 180C.

Prepare about 2dl vegetable stock. Cut the new potatoes in half. Heat little butter in a saucepan at moderate heat. Place the potatoes into the saucepan and let them fry for a couple of minutes without moving them. Then pour the vegetable stock into the saucepan and add some thyme. Let the potatoes simmer under the lid until almost cooked. Just remember to make sure that the pan isn't too hot and the potatoes won't burn.

Heat butter in another pan and gently fry the leeks in there for a few minutes. Add the salt and sugar and heat it all for further couple of minutes. Brush a cake tin with some of this butter, salt and sugar mix from the leek pan.

Place the leeks into the bottom of the cake tin and also pour the rest of the butter on them. Then add the potatoes on the top of them and some more thyme. Finally put the puff pastry sheet into the tin and press it down to the edges.

Bake the tart at 180C for about 30 minutes. After baking carefully turn it upside down and enjoy it warm.

Happy savoury baking moments!

Your VegHog

22 September 2013

Kartoffelpuffer – German potato fritters with apple chutney

As you may already know The VegHog used to live in Germany and its kitchen has been somewhat influenced by some German dishes. German cuisine tends to be very meaty, but you can find rare vegetarian gems among the traditional food. One of those gems is Kartoffelpuffer, also called Reibekuchen, which are potato fritters made of grated potatoes. Kartoffelpuffer are offered at pretty much every German public outdoor event and it's indeed nice to get a vegetarian alternative offered.

I'm going to share my Kartoffelpuffer recipe with you today. I made my potato fritters fairly traditionally German, but added a British twist to the dish by serving them with apple chutney. Germans would eat their potato fritters with apple puree, but I wanted something more savoury and a British style chutney seemed to be the right choice.

Ingredients for the apple chutney:

2 pink lady apples
1 small onion
50ml cider vinegar
50ml dry cider (I used Wyld Wood organic cider)
80g sugar

Let's start by making the chutney. This recipe doesn't make such a huge amount, but multiply the ingredients if you want to store some of this chutney for a later use. Grate the apples and chop the onion very finely. Heat the onion, grated apples, sugar, salt, vinegar and cider gently in the pan. Let it simmer at low heat for about 20-30 minutes until the consistency becomes sticky. If needed add more sugar or cider. Then let this chutney cool and make the fritters.

Ingredients for the potato fritters:

1kg potatoes
1 large onion
3 eggs
2tbsp flour
Black pepper
Vegetable oil for frying

Grate the potatoes and chop the onion finely. You could also grate the onion if you have a good device for doing it. Dry the potatoes with a tea towel or kitchen roll in order to remove the excess fluid. Mix the potatoes and onion with the eggs and flour. Season the mix with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Add more flour if the mixture is too moist. The fritters should stick together nicely in the pan.

Heat vegetable oil in a pan and shape fritters of the potato mix. Normally Kartoffelpuffer tend to be quite large, but you can make smaller ones if you prefer. I would call mine medium size. Fry the fritters at moderate heat on both sides until they are golden brown and crispy outside and fully cooked inside.

Serve them with the apple chutney. For serving I also made a few fresh apple strings as decoration.


Your VegHog

18 September 2013

Mung bean salad with shallot vinaigrette

Recently I started sprouting seeds again. I bought different seeds and a new sprouting jar, which is a convenient tool for sprouting seeds as its lid is a sieve. You don't necessarily need such a sprouter as long as you rinse your sprouts twice a day. It's a lot of fun and the produce is ready in a few days and so tasty and healthy.

Alfalfa is a nice little sprout to add to salads, but this one I made with mung beans, which I like very much. This makes quite a nice and light lunch or side salad.


½tbsp mung beans (volume before sprouting)
1 small red pepper

Shallot vinaigrette:

1 small shallot
5tbsp olive oil
4tbsp cider vinegar
Herb salt
Black pepper

If you sprout the mung beans from the seeds, you'll need a few days for completion of this salad and can watch the sprouts grow. Of course mung beans can also be purchased already sprouted.

Once you have the mung beans, start by making the vinaigrette. Chop the shallot very finely and fry it in olive oil for about 10 minutes. Take the pan off heat and add the other ingredients and mix. Puree the vinaigrette if there are too large shallot chunks.

Prepare the lettuce for the salad and chop the pepper. Mix them with the mung beans and pour the vinaigrette on the salad. Done!

Stay hungry!

Your VegHog

17 September 2013

Giant couscous with roasted onion squash

I just noticed a curious thing: among all these recipe posts there isn't a single couscous dish, although it's one of my favourites! I really need to correct this mishap immediately and therefore I'm posting a couscous dish today.

Couscous is a brilliant ingredient for vegetable dishes. For this one I chose onion squash as the main vegetable, it's sweet and nutty and perfect in couscous. Instead of regular couscous I used giant couscous and it was very flavoursome variation since I also cooked it in vegetable stock.


½ onion squash
2 shallots
2 garlic cloves
100g giant couscous
200ml vegetable stock
100g fresh tomatoes
Couple of sun-dried tomatoes
A few pine nuts
Nettle salt (this is not a necessity, normal salt or herb salt are just fine as well)
Ground black pepper
Vegetable oil


Cut an onion squash in half and remove the seeds. Place one half on a baking dish and brush the squash half with oil. Save the other half for another tasty dish. I have some nice squash recipes here, have a look! Roast it at 180C for about 40 minutes or until tender. When the squash is roasted cut it into small cubes.

Prepare a vegetable stock and add very finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes there and season it with thyme. Leave it to rest for a while.

Chop the shallots and the garlic and fry them in oil. Add the tomatoes, the pine nuts and then the onion squash cubes to the pan. Leave it at low heat while you prepare the couscous in a separate pan.

The preparation of the giant couscous is slightly different than that of regular couscous. Fry the couscous lightly in a little olive oil. Add the vegetable stock to the pan once the couscous is fried golden brown. Stir continuously until all the water has absorbed, but add more water if the couscous isn't tender yet. Cooking of the giant couscous takes about 15 minutes.

Combine the squash and the couscous and mix. Season with salt and pepper. And there it is, a very easy autumnal vegan squash couscous.

Your VegHog

15 September 2013

Stuffed gem squashes with baked new potatoes

It's raining outside, so finally I'm officially allowed to post squash dishes like this, right? Gem squashes are small, mild, creamy and delicate. They taste nice and subtle and are quite versatile little vegetables. Today I roasted them with a stuffing and served with lovely baked new potatoes.

I decorated the squashes with some parmesan crisps (obviously made out of vegetarian parmesan), and don't they look cute on these gems! You can make some quickly: just grate vegetarian parmesan and place it on baking paper in circles. Bake at 200C for about 5 minutes until they are crispy. Let them chill after baking. Make sure you don't eat all of them before you get to decorating the dish.

Ingredients for the roasted gem squashes:

3 gem squashes
Vegetarian pasta cheese
Lemon zest
Lemon & pepper bread crumbs
2 garlic cloves

Ingredients for the baked new potatoes:

New potatoes
Olive oil
Sea salt
Paprika powder

Pre-heat the oven to 180C. Wash the new potatoes and cut off any bad bits but don't peel them. Roll them in a olive oil, sea salt and paprika powder mix and place on a baking tray. Bake them in an oven dish for about 40 minutes until they are soft with a golden brown outer skin. They could take longer depending on the size.

Cut the gem squashes in half and remove the seeds. Scoop some of the squash out by leaving a thin squash shell. Save some of the squash insides for the stuffing and then prepare the other stuffing ingredients. Grate some vegetarian pasta cheese (same as vegetarian parmesan) and mix it with the chopped herbs, garlic and grated lemon zest. Add some lemon and pepper bread crumbs and there you have the lemony and cheesy stuffing.

Place the stuffing on the squash halves and bake them at 180C for about 30 minutes until the squash halves are baked and the cheese has melted. Decorate with the parmesan crisps and serve with the baked new potatoes. I served them with a side salad. If you think the dish is too dry add some homemade herb butter to the potatoes.

Enjoy this autumn dish and keep warm!

Your VegHog