Plant-based delights

Whole Again: A fresh collection of wholesome recipes, by Bronwyn Kan, Beatnik Publishing, RRP $45
Whole Again: A fresh collection of wholesome recipes, by Bronwyn Kan, Beatnik Publishing, RRP $45
Showcasing the popularity of plant-based food, Bronwyn Kan has collected recipes from a variety of whole-food entrepreneurs across the country.

Whole Again features recipes from 17 contributors from Whagaparoa to Queenstown.

Kan says she has come across those that she features in her book in her travels, visiting weekend markets, through social media and attending talks and events.

''These wholesome delectable recipes have been shared by our ever-growing community of entrepreneurs who are devoted to educating and encouraging us to eat well while caring for the world we live in.''

The book is a mix of recipes that can take a bit of time, along with those that can be made in a flash including plant-based bowls, family meals and sweet raw treats.

Along with the recipes are stories about each of the entrepreneurs who share their interests in holistic health and a conscious approach to business.

Among the collection is Damon Chaparro from Aro Ha Wellness Retreat, just outside of Glenorchy.

Kan tells of wandering through the on-site garden at Aro Ha, which provides fresh organically-grown ingredients for the plant-based, paleo-inspired menu served to guests at its week-long retreats.

''Together we harvested some baby bok choy and romanesco for this deconstructed sushi bowl.''

Photos: Supplied
Photos: Supplied
Deconstructed sushi bowl

If I had to choose a country to eat from for the rest of my life, it would be Japan. Known for plant-based diets, an intimate relationship with the sea, and one of the oldest living populations in the world, this dish embodies the flavours and benefits I love.

Serves 4

Pickled cucumber

1 cucumber, thinly sliced
½ cup (125ml) rice wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar
2 tsp coconut sugar
1 Tbsp tamari
1 tsp sesame oil
2 Tbsp sesame seeds

Red rice
2 cups (400g) red or brown rice
¼ cup (60ml) sushi rice vinegar

Teriyaki roasted cauliflower
6 Tbsp tamari
¼ cup (60ml) water
3 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
2 tsp ginger, grated
4 Tbsp coconut sugar
1 Tbsp cornstarch
1 head cauliflower, chopped into florets
8 small carrots
salt and pepper, to taste
olive oil
4 baby or 2 medium sized bok choys, thinly sliced lengthwise

To serve
½ pack of nori sheets, cut diagonally into triangles
4 radishes, thinly sliced
coriander, to garnish

To make the pickled cucumber, place sliced cucumber in a bowl and sprinkle with a generous pinch of salt - gently mix.

Set aside for 5 minutes then rinse and drain.

In a lidded container, combine rice vinegar, coconut sugar, tamari, sesame oil and sesame seeds.

Add cucumbers to the container and, with the lid on, toss to marinate.

To make the rice, cook rice as per package instructions. Once cooked, add sushi rice vinegar and stir well to combine.

To make the teriyaki roasted cauliflower, heat oven to 200degC.

Add tamari, water, rice wine vinegar, grated ginger and coconut sugar in a medium pot. Bring to boil and simmer on low heat for 5 minutes. Dissolve cornstarch in a small amount of water.

Add this cornstarch mixture to the pot to thicken, mixing well. Simmer for a further minute and stir occasionally. Add cauliflower to the pot and toss to combine.

Spread cauliflower in a single layer on a lined baking tray.

Place carrots on separate lined baking tray. Sprinkle generously with salt, pepper and olive oil. Roast both the cauliflower and carrots in the oven for 20 minutes or until done.

To saute the bok choy, heat olive oil in a pan over medium heat.

Add bok choy and season with salt and pepper. Cook for a few minutes.

To serve, add a scoop of rice, some toasted cauliflower, bok choy, carrots, pickled cucumber, a couple of nori sheets and some radish in a serving bowl. Garnish with coriander and extra sesame seeds.

- Damon Chaparro, Aro ha Wellness Retreat, Queenstown

Chocolate fudge pancakes

These decadent pancakes have a deliciously fudge-y texture and when served with the slight bitterness of berries and smooth creamy yoghurt, create a guilt-free breakfast trifecta.

Makes 10

1 cup (103g) ground almonds
1 cup (156g) buckwheat flour
½ cup (94g) coconut sugar
¼ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp baking powder
¼ cup (24g) cacao powder
1 cup (250ml) almond milk
2 Tbsp coconut oil, for cooking

Linseed 'eggs'
2 Tbsp ground linseed
¼ cup (60ml) warm water

Combine the ground almonds, buckwheat flour, coconut sugar, baking soda, baking powder and cacao powder into a food processor and blitz briefly until mixed well.

In a separate bowl, make your linseed eggs by combining the ground linseed and roughly quarter cup of warm water until you get an egg-like consistency.

Add your linseed eggs and almond milk to the dry mix and blend in a food processor until smooth.

Heat up a pan and grease with a little bit of coconut oil. Pour the mixture and cook for 2-3 minutes each side until lightly browned.

Serve with your favourite coconut yoghurt dolloped on top with a mix of fresh seasonal berries.

Tip: If you have the time, leave the pancake mix in the fridge for a few hours prior to cooking it. This helps the mix set and will create fluffier, thicker pancakes.

- Monique Hemmingson, Wild One Wholefoods, Mt Maunganui, Bay of Plenty

Vietnamese banh goi (samosa)

These require some attention but will repay you with crispy and flavoursome morsels. Enjoy these samosas for lunch or dinner, on their own or with a salad. Yes please!

Makes 12

200g purple kumara, boiled
200g mushrooms (a mix of button, oyster or cauliflower), sliced
1 cup (100g) Chinese cabbage, grated
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 onion, chopped
¼ cup leek, chopped
½ cup walnuts, roughly chopped
1 tsp garlic, crushed
1 tsp ginger, grated
½ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp onion powder
½ tsp cordyceps (mushroom powder)
2 tsp Chinese five spice
½ cup (118ml) sesame oil
6 sheets puff pastry
olive oil, for brushing and cooking
milk, for brushing
¼ cup (40g) sesame seeds

Dipping sauce
1 cup (110g) blackberries
½ cup (118ml) grapeseed oil
1 Tbsp hemp seed oil
1 Tbsp maple syrup
2 Tbsp white wine vinegar
1 Tbsp tamari

Roughly mash boiled kumara with a fork and set aside.

Preheat oven to 180degC and line a baking tray with baking paper.

Heat a pan over medium heat and fry mushrooms in some olive oil, then set aside.

In same pan, fry cabbage and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Then place in the same bowl as the mushrooms.

Fry onion and leek along with walnuts, all the spices and sesame oil. Add this to the mushroom, kumara and cabbage and set aside to slightly cool.

Cut each sheet of puff pastry into four triangles and place a spoonful of filling into the middle. Brush the edges of the sheet with your choice of milk. Fold over to create a triangle and press the sides down with a fork. Brush the top with a little olive oil and sprinkle sesame seeds on top.

Bake for 20 minutes in the oven or until golden brown.

To make the dipping sauce, blend all ingredients together in a high-speed blender.

Serve immediately while hot alongside the dipping sauce.

- Mike and Chantel Priddy, Greenleaf Organics, Kingsland, Auckland

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