One of the reasons that Australia is such a great place to live is the pumpkin culture. I don’t think I’ve ever been to a restaurant or coffee shop without a pumpkin salad option (other one is beetroot). It is all-year everyday vegetable – unlike in Europe where pumpkins are available for autumn only. Just saying, missing out… So this is me justifying my new spring favorite breakfast – pumpkin pie overnight oats (just kidding an hour will do)!
This is not only the most delicious thing ever but also now my everyday saver. I make a batch of this and have it a t work after my run or barre class (hence the ugly photos). Most convenient thing ever! I used to make oatmeal and have it with banana and PB – but as spring is coming this is more fresh but still as filling and delicious and creamy. Nothing like some slimy overnight chia puddings, yuk.
Btw, if you want to go crazy – add some sultanas and chopped walnuts as well as a small crated carrot – and you got yourself pumpkin pie – carrot cake hybrid oats.
Pumpkin Pie Overnight Oats
½ – 1 C butternut or kent pumpkin
1/3 C oats
1t tbs chia
¼ C oat mylk
(1 tbs vanilla protein)
½ tsp nutmeg
½ tsp gingerbread spice
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp turmeric
- Dry roast or steam pumpkin (25-30 minutes in 200 C will do for a half pumpkin as a whole – with peel on). Let cool and chop to pieces. You can do this when ever and use the pumpkin later (one should always have roasted pumpkin in fridge to add to salads, pasta sauces, pizza toppings, smoothie bowls or sandwiches).
- Blend pumpkin, banana and oat mylk until smooth (also the pumpkin peel, it’s good for you).
- Add rest of the ingredients in blender and pulse to mix everything.
- Potentially add a dash of more mylk if too sticky.
- Put in a container and let sit in fridge for at least an hour.
- Eat with vanilla coconut yogurt.
Hi there I am here to save you with your afternoon sweet cravings or mid morning blood sugar drops! Making these balls, along with my baobab and orange ones, are my every weekend routine for the coming week to make sure I stay away from naughty snacking at work. The problem is though that they are bit too good and I eat them already in the morning and end up hangry in the afternoon anyway haha!
Once again peppermint, but it’s just so delicious with nutty buckwheat and spirulina, try yourself!
Peppermint Power Balls (about 12)
- 5 Medjool dates
- 1/2 C buckwheat kernels
- 1/2 C pepitas (or any seeds)
- 3 tbs of almonds
- 2 tbsp vanilla protein powder (I use Prana on Vanilla Creme)
- 1 tbs of super greens powder (or spirulina powder)
- 2 tbsp peppermint essential oil
- 1-3 tbs blended oats (optionally more protein powder or almond meal or if you don’t want mat finishing just leave it out)
- Soak pitted dates for a minimum of 5 minutes in water.
- Use a food processor to grind buckwheat, pepitas, and almonds to rough even flour.
- Add in five dates. Save the date infused water.
- Blend dates with the mixture in the food processor until it is evenly chopped.
- Add in protein powder and green powder.
- Infuse 2 drops of essential oil to one tablespoon of date water. Sparkle it around the mixture in food processor.
- Blend one last time with a food processor.
- If the texture is not sticking together add another tablespoon of date water. Careful though not to put too much water.
- Move mixture to a bowl and add a tablespoon of blended oats to mix and start rolling mixture into balls.
I used this product called Puhtikaura (which is basically powdered pre-cooked oats) to roll these balls to give them powdered finish. This is optional though and like I said before, you can use blended oats or almond meal or even cacao for this.
I was raised and born in Finland but I have lived last four years in Australia. People often ask what the Finnish food is like and I mumble something about basic food, being embarrassed about Finnish cuisine not being known as an inventor of macarons, avo toast or poke bowls.
Truth is that Finnish food is traditionally survival food. For eight months of the year, the entire country is more or less covered in snow and nothing grows and can be harvested. For my ancestors, it was all about having root vegetables, pickled vegetables, grains, dried fish and meat stored to eat throughout the year. Leafy salads and fruits in Finland were luxuries that followed fridges and international trade. Obviously when I grew up our food was modern and plentiful but the everyday dishes we had were still practical, simple and inexpensive, yet still tasty.
This particular dish is something I never touched as a kid, because it looked ugly and I knew it had cabbage in it (which sounded yak). However, when I grew older I learned to love it. When I stopped eating meat, I stopped cooking it for a while, until I got inspired by few recipes that used TVP mince. However, I don’t like eating TVP, it makes my tummy ache and it seems artificial and dodgy so I made up my own recipe just with mushrooms, and it came out heavenly and has been loved by both, Finns and foreigners who I have fed with it.
Finnish Mushroom Cabbage Casserole (serves 6)
2 big carrots
500 g of mushrooms (any kind will do)
3 gloves of garlic
1 C of brown rice (uncooked)
rosemary (fresh preferred)
1 tbs of paprika
1.5 vegetable stock cubes
1 C almond mylk (or oat)
2 tbs o maple syrup
2 tbs of balsamic vinegar
- Cook the rice following the instructions on the package.
- Chop onion, mushrooms, and carrots to small cubes. Crush garlic and rosemary.
- In a pan heat 2 tbs of olive oil and add onion and garlic. After 1 minute, add diced mushrooms and carrots. Add 1 dl of water and 1 stock cube, balsamic vinegar, paprika, and rosemary. Season with salt. Let cook for 10-15 minutes.
- Cut cabbage as small as you prefer (I do 2 cm x 2cm squares, roughly).
- Heat 2 tbs of olive oil in a wok pan or big pot. Add the cabbage and keep mixing. When cabbage starts to soften, add maple syrup and 1/2 vegetable stock cube (potentially a 1-2 tbs water). Let cabbage soften about 10 minutes.
- Add mushroom mix and rice in the pot with cooked cabbage and mix all together. Taste if you need more salt and add some pepper.
- Poor mix in an oven tray prepared with olive oil.
- Pour 1 C of plant-based milk and 1/2 C of water on top of the dish.
- Cook in the oven in 175 C for about an hour.
- Traditionally enjoyed with lingonberries or lingonberry jam. But as an expat, I have it with pickled beetroot and fresh chopped parsley on top.
This dish is perfect because it serves a household of two three times. So basically I cook it on Sunday and it saves many busy weeknights. This is also a great side for game or fish if you that is part of your diet. Believe me, it tastes much much better than it looks haha!
I am obsessed with kimchi, I literally always order it if it’s on the menu and eat the entire serving. Seriously, I order two if people want to share. I sometimes have it on top of an avocado toast. Sometimes on top of brown rice as a meal. Told you, obsessed.
Ever since watching the Chef’s Table episode with Jeong Kwan I have wanted to make my own. I first attempted to make it with this health blog recipe and it turned out tasty fermented cabbage which had nothing to do with kimchi though. The second time, I decided to learn from the guru. Maangchi is an adorable Korean chef whose video taught me and my boyfriend ferment in Korean way. The first patch was not vegetarian (fish sauce) because we wanted to everything right. We followed her video and kimchi turned out amazing. Please do yourself a favor and watch her Kimchi making video, it is seriously heartwarming.
The third time I created my own version of traditional Korean kimchi but made it vegan. And it is seriously the best one I have had! I mean I even like the store bought ones, but this is ridiculously good. And it doesn’t lack any authentic flavor or texture because the methodology is same.
If you follow my recipe you can still follow Maangchi’s video, just use my measurements and ingredients.
Vegan Kimchi Traditional way
1 large napa cabbage
1/2 C sea salt (fine)
2/3 C water
2 tbsp brown rice flour
2 tsp coconut sugar/brown sugar
2/3 C radish (chopped as thin sticks)
1 carrot (chopped as thin stick)
6-8 spring onions (chopped)
4 garlic gloves (minced)
1 tbs of minced ginger
1/2 onion (minced)
2/3 Korean hot pepper flakes
Splash of water
2 x 1.5 -2-liter jars (or four smaller ones).
Bucket to suit the size of the cabbage. I used a rectangle one.
The recipe makes 2.2 kg of kimchi.
- Cut napa cabbage in half. Then cut each half into two pieces. You will end up with four pieces of cabbage cut lengthwise.
- Massage salt to the cabbage leaves all way through (also in between).
- Place the cabbage pieces into the bucket and let them sit for 2 hours. (I left mine for 6 and nothing happened). Every 30 minutes turn the pieces around.
- Meanwhile, prepare the porridge. Heat the water and rice flour on a Teflon pot and when it start to look like a porridge add the sugar and bring the heat down the When porridge is even, cool it down.
- Cut the vegetables.
- Mix the kimchi paste ingredients into the porridge in a big mixing bowl. Splash some water to make it stickier.
- After two hours, wash the salt of cabbage pieces. Use paper towels or towel to dry them.
- Use boiling water (and apple cider vinegar) to sterilize jars.
- In the mixing bowl take one piece of cabbage at the time and use your hands to spread and massage the paste throughout each layer of cabbage. Once done put the cabbage in a jar. Repeat. Once one jar is full (I could fit half a cabbage in one 1.8 liter jar), use a wooden spatula to push cabbage on the bottom. This should bring the liquid above the cabbage.
- When done place the sterilized lid on the jar.
- Leave the jars on the kitchen bench for 36 hours to ferment. Then refrigerate.
Enjoy it on top of a Buddha bowl like we did. Or inside a sushi roll. With tempeh and steamed vegetables and brown rice. Or on side of anything.
I bring this to work and have it every day with steamed vegetables and quinoa. It’s just so damn good for your guts and tastes amazing!
When you make a water based vegan soup and your carnivore boyfriend ends up begging for more, you know you have done something right. This soup is a filling and warming and it definitely costs less than a trip to Ho Chi Minh.
Vegan Pho (For two)
2 l water
1.5 cubes vegetable stock cubes
2 gloves of garlic
a piece of sliced fresh ginger
1 star anise
1 cinnamon stalk
2 tbs tamari
4 portobello mushrooms (or smaller mushrooms, use more)
1 tsp coconut oil
a bunch of bok choy or Chinese cabbage
Mung bean sprouts
Brown rice noodles/Mung bean noodles
- Slice garlic and ginger. Chop onion into quarters.
- Use a pot to heat the water. Add vegetable cubes, tamari garlic, ginger, onion, cinnamon and star anise. Bring to boil and reduce the heat. Let simmer for 30 minutes.
- Chop mushrooms to thin slices. Stirfry in coconut oil until cooked through.
- Chop herbs.
- 3 minutes before serving, strain the broth. Add bok choy and let it simmer 3 more minutes.
- Meanwhile, cook the noodles al dente and place in bowls.
- To serve. Pour the broth on top of noodles (with bok choy). Add mushrooms on top of the bowls, as well as the herbs and sprouts.
If there is leftover broth, heat it day after and enjoy all over again.
This is for you if you love Nutella, Ferrero Rocher, and Kinder Bueno. And coffee. Enjoy. Perfect way to start a slow weekend morning.
If you are not having an easter chocolate bender like we are at the moment, you can also use a tablespoon of cacao powder or spoonful of cacao nibs instead of melted chocolate. Or you can leave it out altogether, just hazelnuts, banana, and coffee are a divine combination.
Hazelnut Mocca Smoothie Bowl (for two)
3-4 frozen bananas
1/3 C almond mylk
double shot of espresso (or strong coffee)
1/3 C hazelnuts
1 tsp of vanilla beans (or extract)
20 g of dark chocolate (70% cacao)
- Roast hazelnuts fro 10-15 mins in 200 C. Let cool. (I roast these earlier and keep in a jar if I feel like this smoothie etc. They just taste richer after roasting). No oil needed.
- Make espresso and let it cool in the fridge.
- Blend 2/3 bananas and hazelnuts with almond mylk and coffee. Add remaining bananas and vanilla. Blend.
- Melt the chocolate on top of boiling water. use a spatula to pour the melted chocolate into a blender. Blend.
- Enjoy in a bowl topped with some crushed hazelnuts and more chocolate or berries.
//EDIT: I healthified the recipe for weekday mornings. I tried it today and it was still amazing. See below:
Healthified Hazelnut Mocca Smoothie Bowl (for one)
1.5 -2 frozen bananas
splash of almond mylk/any plant based milk
shot of espresso (or strong coffee)
1/4 C hazelnuts
1 heaped tbs of vanilla protein powder
See below a yummy recipe that I have healthified to be a perfect breakfast. Again there is a few fancier ingredients involved but if you like liquorice ice cream (like any Finnish kid) this one is for you!
Liquorice Smoothie Bowl
1.5-2 frozen bananas
1/3 C coconut water/water/almond mylk
1 tbs almond butter
1-2 dried figs
Handful of spinach (optional)
1-2 spirulina tablets (optional)
1 tbs of vegan vanilla protein powder
2 tsp of liquorice root powder
- Blend spinach with the liquid.
- Add bananas and chopped figs few at the time and keep blending.
- Add rest of the ingredients.
- Top with granola and berries (especially rasberries and blueberries go well).
TIP: If you need more protein top your bowl with seeds and nuts. This is, however, quite filling with almond butter and protein powder. Also, spirulina curves sweet cravings and is good to have with all the fructose in the bowl. However, if you prefer less fruit use avocado or zucchini instead of some banana.