What kind of cooking type are you? The one who thinks she/he can’t cook at all, the one who’s never sure what to cook, take it too seriously or do you just experiment as I do?
If you think you can’t cook: It’s a lie. It’s like saying you can’t paint or get creative. I always thought I can’t cook, I made fires in the kitchen, burned a lot of food and pots – everyone was telling me to better just keep washing dishes instead of cooking. Then the day came where I finally grabbed the book “Skinny Bitch” (it’s not what you think:D) under a mountain of clothes and started reading it.
I felt like vomiting after that! It’s a book about the food industry – even today I get goosebumps. Anyway, I went down into the kitchen and told my mum that I’ll be vegetarian now. Actually, I already had as kid vegan tendencies but my Serbian family thought something is wrong and you need meat – well… that’s another story, for another blog post.
Now I had to drop all the limiting beliefs when it came to cooking and learn how to prepare (simple) vegetarian dishes. HA! Suddenly I got really good at cooking – I’ve just been bad at cooking meaty dishes because well, I was not made to it eat! :D ha!.
I’d like to share with you some ideas on how you can start to cook more intuitively and creative without needing a lot of time or special skills:
- Get inspired by what is possible to create with food on blogs and cooking books but don’t take it too seriously. I’m not sure when I have tried out a recipe for the last time and did it 100% as it has been written. Most of the time all the dishes are really good, rarely okay and uneatable has been one cake I tried baking in Guatemala – but they don’t bake cakes there, so it’s really difficult to get incidences for baking (and I mean flour, yeast and baking soda not some for us exotic stuff) – well it tasted like a sweet stone and forgetting it in the oven didn’t help too! Most stuff works out and you’ll learn how to combine foods.
- Don’t be afraid to experiment and try out different stuff – in the beginning even simple recipes – you’ll start to build your cooking skills and also will collect some basic ingredients and recipes which you know they work and from there you can experiment and add other stuff to it. That’s why I love dips so much – you can be super playful with them and add herbs, dried tomatoes and so on which will change the taste and make it different but still you know that the base works.
- Go to the market, zero-waste or organic shop (or supermarket!) and buy stuff that is in season and especially locally produced. There are so many grains we’ve forgotten about and also veggies which we can use for delicious and creative meals. Just check online or ask the farmer on the market how to prepare this. I do this also in Asia or Central America where I’ve not been sure if and for how long I should cook something – the locals know the best!
- Let go of thinking that cooking is complicated and takes a lot of time. It can be easy, creative, delicious, fast and healthy. But also it’s beautiful to take time for yourself to prepare your food. I mean, you’re worthy of investing 20-30 minutes to prepare something good for yourself. Not everything needs to be always the fastest version – why? For what? What else are you doing with this time? Prepare your food in peace and with joy because you’ll eat the energy as well. I love that cooking (or blending!:D) brings me in the present moment – sometimes I just cook, other times there is music or a podcast in the background.
- The only bad thing about cooking for yourself is that you’ll get really good in it and you’ll spoil yourself so much. Average food will just taste…well, average. The good thing is that you’ll save some money because you’ll only go to good restaurants and as a treat – anything else you are able to make by yourself 100 times fresher and tastier! HA! :)
- I love to use cups as a measurement – it’s so easy, just take one coffee cup for everything and it you’ll get a better feeling for intuitive cooking. Once you built some skills and reconnected more to intuition, you’ll FEEL what to put in your food. It’s just something that will develop by time and let go of the fear of making mistakes in the kitchen.
I want to share some recipes from our Soulsisters Day with you – or better to say the ingredients because I cook mostly without writing stuff down or following measurements – it’s really difficult for me to remember – take it as an inspiration and make your own special version! Because we mostly have some stuff at home and it’s better to use this – it creates less food waste and also saves you money.
Making your own yogurt is complicated? This is a very lazy delicious version – actually I’m still working on the one with probiotics but for now: let’s keep it simple.
1. Soak one cup of almonds and one of the cashews for at least 1 hour
2. Add in a blender with one cup of your fave plant milk and some vanilla essence
3. Add 3-6 spoons of the raw froogies strawberry powder and/or fresh berries
4. If you like it sweet, you can add your fave sweetener like maple syrup
5. Blend it all together – if you want the mass to be more liquid, just add more milk.
6. Enjoy with homemade granola (recipe coming soon) or dip sweet summer rolls in it (recipe below)
Sweet Apple Cinnamon Summer Rolls
Summer-rolls are the healthy spring-roll version – you just buy rice papers and follow the instructions. This recipe is simple but takes some patience – can be made sweet and savory with veggies and makes a great, fancy finger-food.
1. But first cut apples into very thin slices (or other fruits which are not too watery if you eat it the next day
2. Place in a bowl, add a bit of lemon juice (so they don’t turn brown) and cinnamon
3. Place on the rice paper and before rolling add some (dried) edible flowers – I like the ones from Sonnentor a lot.
4. Enjoy them with a sweet vanilla sauce or the strawberry yogurt!
Berry Raw Cake
Raw cakes sound always complicated and like you need 98348 special expensive ingredients – but NO! This is my to-go-basic-raw-cake:
1. one cup of soaked dates (means soak them in water for an hour)
2. one cup of soaked almonds/walnuts/hazelnuts
3. a bit of plant milk
4. one spoon of coconut oil
5. optional: raw cacao
6. optional: maple syrup (or any sweetener you like)
7. optional: I’m right now playing around with the froogies raw berry powders and love them! For example, in this case, I’ve been using raspberry – you can add either two different ones in the top and lower layer or the same for a more intense, fruity taste.
8. Place everything in a food processor, blender or container if you’re blending with a handheld mixer. Blend slowly and with a lot of patience. Take a baking dish (it’s better to use one which is possible to remove the part around the cake and just keep the lower part). You can oil it with coconut oil and then gently take your sticky mass and press it gently with your fingers on the bottom of your baking dish. Place it in the freezer – the best is at least for one hour.
1. One and a half cups soaked cashews
2. Half cup of soaked almonds
3. Add them in a blender with as much as you like of froogies berry powder (I chose raspberry, makes such a nice combo with chocolate) – you can of course also use fresh or frozen berries but sometimes they’re missing in taste or get too watery.
4. Splash of plant milk (almond, coconut)
5. 2 to 3 coffee spoons of coconut oil (it makes it freeze and holds the mass)
6. Some maple syrup or sweetener you like (I don’t sweeten it mostly since the base is super sweet)
7. Blend until smooth and add on top of the frozen base
8. Get creative with berry decoration on top and bring back into the freezer until it’s firm (over night for example).
9. Take out 10-15 minutes before serving and enjoy!
- Most of the time I create my hummus with zero-waste chickpeas – I soak them over night and the next day I boil them for about 2 hours. Always make a bigger batch because you can store it in the fridge or even freeze it. Or make hummus!
- After your chickpeas are ready, you can cut carrots in halves, put on a baking dish, add rosemary or other herbs and salt on top, drizzle olive oil (or some other if you want to experiment!) and maple syrup over it and put in the oven until it’s nicely roasted
- Create a classic hummus
- Add the carrots
- Eat warm or let it cool down and enjoy! :)
No-one knows what this is from but everyone loves it! It’s so easy and super delicious – kind-a-vegan-cheezy-yummi-surprising-mouth-explosion. You could also exchange the cashews for local, cheap, organic sunflower seeds (I love the one from Chez Mamie!).
- Soak 1-2 cups of cashews for at least one hour (better two, you’ll love it)
- Chop garlic, dried tomatoes and fresh herbs you love (I used oregano & basil)
- Squeeze one lemon
- Place everything in a blender, maybe add a little splash of olive oil and salt (if it’s too thick, just add a bit of water)
- Blend, place in a bowl, add some fresh ground pepper & fresh herbs on the top
- Enjoy on your home baked focaccia – mhmmmm!
- Boil a sweet potato
- Chop garlic very small
- When the potato is ready, put it on a plate and let it cool down a little bit
- Now take a fork and smash it gently
- Add the masala spices or whatever curry (paste) you like
- Add fresh herbs like coriander if you like and also the garlic
- Check if you want to squeeze a bit of lemon juice into it
Foccacia with dried tomatoes & rosemary
Omg if you’re a newbie baker, I can totally recommend you to try out focaccia – it’s this flat a bit thicker pizza-like Italian bread where you can add also rosemary, dried tomatoes, and olives – it tastes delicious and also don’t be scared to mix different kind of flours you have at home. Last time I used flour for Swiss Zopf bread (haha) and spelt flour! Weirdo combi but sometimes you have 3 open packages and it’s better to use them as soon as possible or you can also find awesome flour at zero-waste shops. Just google recipes and adapt – I think the last time I used this one.
It’s exactly the same as the hummus above, just that I didn’t use chickpeas but lentils. They don’t need to be cooked that long but it’s also recommended to soak them before, so they’re better digestible. Roast the eggplant with the carrots together so you can create both dips in one batch.
Creating your own plant-based milk is easy, cheaper and just more nutritious since it comes in the raw and not pasteurized version. Mostly you can also create a 2 in 1 recipe. Like oat cookies or almond feta!
- Take one cup of oats and put in your blender
- Add two cups of water and blend (you can always add more water, depends on how thick you want it to be)
- Strain it to separate the liquid from the rest of the oats
- Optional: Add vanilla essence, raw cacao powder, maple syrup, froogies berry powder, a banana – whatever you feel like! Either make plain milk, a milkshake or some fancy one for breakfast and cakes! :)
Do you see now what I mean by simple? These are my to-go-things that I always change a little bit – all my basic ingredients I get at zero-waste-shops – just go and get inspired by what they have. For fruit and veggie, the best is to go to a weekly market or farmy.ch has also great products – because let’s be really honest: this produce tastes the best! I also get at the moment many of my veggies from my grandfathers garden! :)
What are your favorite to-go-recipes? Let’s share in the comments so that we can inspire each other to cook delicious nourishing food.
PS. I don’t have that many pictures since I’ve been cooking this after my break-up until 2 am in the morning. <3 Also we got the products from froogies gifted for our brunch and also for all the wonderful women that came to our soulsisters day. Thank you froogies!