Banana Breakfast Bars

Hello and happy Saturday evening!

It’s my first weekend in my new place and of course I couldn’t wait to test out my new oven 😉

As part of an ongoing collaboration with health food company Iswari (if you’re not in Switzerland, check them out here) I’ve been trying some more tasty products, one of which inspired me to make these delicious and nutritious breakfast bars.

The “Super Oats Banana Bliss” (Gekeimter Hafer Banane & Kakao in German) is made up of gluten-free raw sprouted oats, ground buckwheat, powdered lucuma, banana powder, ground almonds, cacao beans, activated buckwheat and blackberries and is such a tasty mix! I love that it’s only made from wholesome ingredients and is packed with so much flavor and nutrition. You can also add liquid to it and create an instant porridge.

Variation: If you can’t get your hands on this product, the recipe should also work with the same amount of dry ingredients, such as a mix of ground and whole oats, buckwheat flour, ground almonds, lucuma etc, but may not have quite the same depth of flavor. I’ll probably experiment with this when I run out (which is bound to happen very soon), so I’ll keep you updated 😉

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Makes: 9 small bars


  • 200 g Super Oats Banana Bliss* (/for non-Swiss residents: see here)
  • 1 ripe banana, mashed
  • 100 g soft dates, mashed or blended
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 heaped tbsp tahini
  • generous pinch of cinnamon

* If you’re thinking of ordering this and live in Switzerland you can get 5% off (as well as on any other Iswari products) with the discount code “blueberrysmiles”. [I get a small commission on any orders placed with this code. I only promote brands and products that I genuinely love and would recommend to friends]. 


  1. Mix all the ingredients together (if your dates are soft enough, you can just mash them in, meaning you only need to use one bowl).
  2. Spread the mixture into a loaf tin lined with baking paper (it won’t fill the whole one, but that’s fine as the mixture is firm) and bake in an oven preheated to 180 °C for ca. 15 minutes. Depending on the thickness, the oven time may vary – you’re looking for the bake to spring back when you touch it.
  3. Leave to cool for a bit before removing from the tin and cutting into bars.

Tip: they’re even better with some tahini slathered on top 😉




Buddha Mug Cake

Hello and happy Monday evening!

I’m back to share a new recipe with you that I’ve come up with as part of a collaboration with the health food company Iswari (if you don’t live in Switzerland, check out their international page instead). I only recently found out about them, but immediately fell in love with their product range, and was only too happy to try some of their goodies.

This weekend I got myself acquainted with their “Buddha’s Awakening Morning Protein“, made of 100% organic milled buckwheat, rice protein, banana powder, tiger nut flour, milled flaxseed, carob and activated buckwheat, and boy was I in for an awakening! As much as I liked the sound of the ingredients, I wasn’t prepared for how much I would love the taste of this nutritious combination.

It’s hard to describe, but the banana, tiger nut and carob give this mix such a wonderful, naturally sweet and also warm and slightly exotic yet incredibly comforting flavor. I decided to make the ultimate comforting treat out of this, by turning it into a mug cake. This is a super easy recipe for a protein-rich breakfast, post-workout snack or afternoon treat. I hope you enjoy!



  • 1 medium-sized ripe banana
  • 5 tbsp “Buddha’s Awakening Morning Protein
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 3.5 tbsp unsweetened rice milk (or almond/oat etc.)
  • 1 tbsp smooth, slightly runny peanut butter


  1. Mash the banana and combine with all the other ingredients.
  2. Pour the batter into a cup. The trick here is not to overfill, as this baby will rise! For me this makes enough for about 1 small coffee cup and 1 small espresso cup, or simply one larger cup. The important thing is that the cake has space to rise above the rim (without overflowing and resulting in a funny mushroom shape).
  3. Cook in the microwave at high heat for ca. 1.5 to 2 minutes (times may vary depending on your microwave and your preferences – I like to have mine a little bit under-baked, so that it’s nice and gooey inside 😉 ).
  4. Optional: add yummy toppings – I’ve been having mine with dark chocolate (I loved this lucuma vanilla chocolate, also by Iswari) and more peanut butter, but berries or jam will work well too.


Happy Mug Cake Making!



Version 2

Pumpkin PB Chocolate Chip Mini Loaves

Hello and happy Saturday!

Rarely does it happen that a bake turns out exactly as I visualized in my head, but this is one of those wonderful times. While trying to fall asleep the other night I was dreaming up recipes to use up some leftover pumpkin (who doesn’t, right?), and Im absolutely delighted with how these little loaves turned out this morning. Soft, moist, sweet and so satisfying – with richness from the peanut butter and bittersweet bursts of dark chocolate.

I’ve already eaten three today and am seriously wishing I made more. They also received the thumbs up from my boyfriend, who had one as a post-workout snack. Whether you’re looking for an indulgent weekend breakfast, afternoon treat or something for on-the-go, these will definitely hit the spot 😉

Let’s get baking!

Makes: 5 (generous) mini loaves


  • 250 g puréed pumpkin*
  • 100 g soft dates – I use these Sukari ones; the 3kg box lasts me for ages and is really good value for money
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds (or ground flaxseeds)
  • 5 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1 tbsp lucuma powder (optional)
  • ground vanilla bean / seeds from 1 vanilla pod
  • good pinch of cinnamon
  • 130 g (1 cup) flour – I used half buckwheat, half wholemeal spelt
  • 1/2 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/4 cup (65 ml) unsweetened rice mylk
  • 1/4 cup (65 ml) unsalted, all-natural peanut butter
  • dark chocolate, chopped (ca. 60-80 g, I used 85%)

* Alternatively, I could imagine puréed butternut squash, sweet potato or even mashed banana would work too. Will keep you updated if I try these versions 😉


  • Mix together the pumpkin purée and chia seeds.
  • Blend together the dates with the maple syrup and pinch of salt, adding this sweet mixture to the pumpkin.
  • Stir in the vanilla, cinnamon, (lucuma powder).
  • Add the baking powder to the flour and stir into the pumpkin mix.
  • Finally, stir in the rice mylk and peanut butter, before adding the chocolate chunks
  • Divide the mixture into your mini loaf tins (if you don’t have any, make muffins instead).
  • Bake in an oven preheated to 180° C for ca. 20 minutes (or until a skewer comes out clean). Leave to cool on the tray for a few minutes.

Happy baking and enjoy!





Healthy Vegan Meal Prep

Good morning and happy Saturday!

As some of you know, I started my first post-graduation job this January. After all these years of studying, it’s been an exciting change and I’ve been enjoying finally feeling like a working member of society! As anticipated, it obviously also radically changed my lifestyle – no more “insta-worthy” pancake stacks for breakfast, working in my pjs all morning, trying out new cafes in the afternoon, going to the gym anytime I want etc. etc.

This past month I’ve been getting up at 5.30 am, leaving the house in the dark, getting back home in the dark, having some dinner and going to bed between 9.30/10 pm. Definitely less time to do some of the things I love, and certainly no longer the luxurious option of being able to cook my meals throughout the day. To make my life a bit easier, I knew the time had come to finally delve into the fascinating practice of meal prep.

It’s early days, but I thought I’d share with you some of my meal prep routine so far.



This is the more “serious” meal prep, when I can make lots of different elements if I want to. So far my strategy has been to:

1. Cook a grain (like quinoa or millet) and

2. Throw some random things in the oven to roast. Then I combine these elements in my trusty tupperware and can:

3. add a dollop of hummus, mashed avocado etc. on the day, to switch things up.

During the week I miss having more time and energy to spend in the kitchen, so I try get a proper cooking session in on the weekend – especially on Sunday. By Friday/Saturday I generally have an idea of what this will be, so I have everything I need on Sunday.


Meal Prep #1: To illustrate, my first serious Sunday meal prep involved cooking a batch of millet, while oven-roasting chopped sweet potato, pumpkin, plantain, carrots and turmeric-ginger cauliflower. I also quickly heated up some frozen peas (by simply adding boiling water from the kettle), which I added to the tupperware. At work, one of my colleagues offered me some of her gloriously pink beetroot hummus, which was the perfect addition. I now tend to have a tub in the fridge, to add some to my prepped meals. (No time to make my own hummus on a regular basis anymore…)

You can make this as simple or complex as you like – simply roasting up a batch of sweet potato and cauliflower and adding some hummus and fresh greens, or making more elements on the stove, like a curry. Last Sunday I went all out, also making a yellow lentil, pumpkin & kale dhal, flower sprout chips and quinoa, to combine with my oven-roasted goodies, beetroot hummus and avocado.


(This is how I served it up for my boyfriend and I on Sunday – the copious leftovers I transferred to tupperware, and I still had some servings of dhal I could freeze).



You probably can make enough on a Sunday to last you all week. I don’t like keeping leftovers in the fridge for too long, though, and my freezer space is quite limited. Instead, I end up doing another meal prep during the week. Difference to the Sunday one? It only takes about 15 minutes. Here are my favorites:

Meal Prep #2: Turmeric & Ginger Quinoa (an old staple) with carrots and peas. Minimal chopping, everything in one pot, no fuss. I like to stir through some coconut oil or olive oil at the end. Depending on what I have around, I add on to this or switch it up, e.g. adding flower sprouts a few minutes before the quinoa has cooked, or some hummus, leftover roasted veg etc.

Meal Prep #3: Mediterranean Pasta – I add wholemeal spelt pasta (usually I make two – large – servings) and 1 head of chopped broccoli into a pan of boiling, salted water and cook for about 5-6 minutes. While this is cooking I chop 1 zucchini, 1 small aubergine and several sundried tomatoes (the kind in olive oil with herbs). When the broccoli pasta is done, I transfer it to a colander, then heat up one clove of crushed garlic in some of the olive oil from the jar of tomatoes. I add the diced veg and cook for a few minutes, adding salt. Once they’re soft I add the pasta into the pan, to mix all the flavors and also season with some mixed Italian herbs and maybe some smokey paprika.


Meal Prep #4: Tahini Tomato Pasta – another old staple I often used to have as a simple post-workout meal. Basically you cook pasta with veggies of your choice and stir in tahini, tomato paste, some olive oil (and smokey paprika and/or cayenne pepper for some heat).



We can’t forget dessert can we? My favorite sweet treat to prepare has been my double chocolate cookies (pictured in the first photo). They are so quick to prepare (you can even have them raw if you’re really low on time) and full of nourishing ingredients. My only problem has been that I eat a lot of them on Sundays already, and don’t have enough left to last me through the week. For more healthy sweet treat ideas check out my breakfast cookies (for breakfast on-the-go or dessert – you can always add a bit of maple syrup if you prefer them even sweeter), fudgy feel-good squares (pictured below), chocolate-covered pitaya and PB&J energy balls.


These options may not be quite as glamorous as the quinoa-sushi-burritos or soba noodle salads with peanut sauce and coriander I pictured myself making, after watching YouTube videos on vegan meal prep – but they’ve been working for me, keeping me nourished throughout the day without taking up too much of my time. I’m sure I’ll be adding on to this as I play around with more options.

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading, and please let me know about your meal prep routine if you have one!

Happy weekend 🙂



Double Chocolate Cookies

Hello and happy Sunday!

I’m back with another simple, speedy and satisfying recipe – this time for chocolate cookies. Double chocolate cookies. These came about last Saturday morning, when I realized I had just over one hour left to shower, get ready and prepare a dessert to bring along to my boyfriend’s.

Whenever I bring something with to someone’s, I tend to go with a tried and tested recipe, or something new that I’ve carefully thought out. Last week, however, I quite enjoyed wildly chucking ingredients into a blender, fueled by adrenalin and faith that, somehow, this would not be a disaster. The cookies I ended up with definitely exceeded my expectations, and got great feedback at the event I made them for.

I’ve since made them again twice, and love having a little stash of them on hand during the week, for when I want a little something sweet at work or before bed. They’re so simple to make, super soft and almost fudgy (the more so the less you bake them), and they can be enjoyed baked or raw. 


Makes ca. 10 small/medium cookies (I tend to double it)

  • 1 cup soft dates – I use Palmyradelights sukari, but medjool should be great too
  • 3 tbsp unsweetened rice milk (or almond, oat etc.)
  • 1-2 tbsp maple syrup*
  • ca. 1/2 cup buckwheat flour
  • 1 tbsp ground flaxseeds
  • 2 tbsp cacao powder
  • 1 tsbp lucuma powder
  • 1 pinch salt
  • chocolate chunks (I use 85% dark chocolate, but whatever floats your boat)
  • chopped walnuts (pecans or peanuts would be amazing too)
  • Variation: Leave out the walnuts and – before stirring in the chocolate chunks – add 2 tbsp smooth, slightly runny peanut butter for chocolate pb cookies. (Even better: add some chopped peanuts too!)

* The amount is totally up to you, depending on your preferred level of sweetness. The first time I used 2 tbsp maple syrup, and loved them, but they were almost a bit too sweet. I made them again with 1 tbsp, which is probably my go-to if I just make them for myself. If making them for friends who aren’t necessarily into healthy eating, I’d probably use 2 again. You can also leave the maple syrup out completely, in which case you may have more of an energy-ball situation going on. The maple syrup basically takes this from sweet snack to serious sweet treat, if you get what I’m saying 😉


  1. Blend together the dates, rice milk and maple syrup (this only works well with soft dates; if yours are slightly drier, try soaking them in hot water first).
  2. Add the remaining ingredients (pinch of salt, buckwheat flour, ground flaxseeds, cacao and lucuma) and mix till combined. It should be a thick, slightly sticky dough.
  3. Stir in the chocolate and walnut chunks.
  4. Shape the mix into equal sized balls with your hands (the mix shouldn’t be too sticky, but if it is, wet hands or adding more flour make it easier), slightly flattening to get a thick cookie shape.
  5. Bake in an oven preheated to 175° C for ca. 8 minutes, or eat just as they are. (Or snack on some raw ones while the rest bake 😉 )

Hope you enjoy!


P.S. If you’re interested in more healthy cookie recipes, check out my breakfast cookies.

Plant-Based Eating – Switzerland (Zurich)

Good morning and happy Saturday!

This post is way overdue – It’s been a bit over 4 months since I’ve moved back to Switzerland, and I’ve had some great plant-based food I want to share with you! I’ll be doing this in several parts, with this one focusing just on Zurich – the largest city in Switzerland.

Juicery 21


I first tried this place when I came home the Christmas before last, and I absolutely loved it. It’s probably one of my favorite health food spots in Switzerland, as it serves delicious and creamy açai bowls (tip: ask for some peanut butter on top!), super comforting bowls of porridge (love the mango and passionfruit one) that you can get topped up with extra almond milk and really nice hot chocolate. They also have juices and some savory options like bagels and a quinoa bowl, but I always go for a breakfast-y option. Add to this the generous portions, reasonable prices and relaxed vibe, you have no reason not to go here on your next visit to Zurich 😉



Roots & Friends


This place had just opened before I moved to London, and it was the first fully plant-based restaurant I’d been to in Switzerland. They serve fresh, nourishing bowls and also do a good açai bowl (Juicery’s is my #1 favorite though). Besides the location near Zurich main station you can also find them close to Paradeplatz, as part of Balboa Bar & Gym (really awesome HIIT/strength classes!). The Balboa location also does a weekly Sunday brunch (for CHF 35, last time I checked).




I already did a full blog post on the oldest vegetarian restaurant in Europe, so check that out if you want to know more. This place is veggie paradise, with all kinds of fantastic options, warm and cold. Every dish is clearly labeled, and most things are vegan (there are only some with dairy). I definitely recommend piling up your plate at the buffet, but there’s also a menu you can order from instead. There are several locations throughout Zurich and the original one (Sihlstrasse 28) also has the Hiltl Shop (see below) around the corner, where you can shop for Hiltl brand goodies, order a matcha latte or pick something up from the veggie butcher’s section 😉 (They also sell some UK goodies, like Trek and nakd bars, Rude Health mylks as well as great quality vegan chocolates from Naturkostbar and Löwdelights).





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Tibits is another awesome veggie place – very similar to Hiltl, to which it belongs, but buffet-only. If you have to choose between them, I’d definitely go for Hiltl, as the options are just that little bit better in my opinion, but a meal at Tibits is always a treat. There are quite a few Tibits throughout Switzerland (St Gallen, Basel, Lucerne, Winterthur), plus, as you may know if you live there, there are also two in London (one off Regent Street and a new one on Southwark Street, near the Tate Modern). They also do nice drinks, my most recent try being the rooibos cappuccino, which I can only recommend!


Elle ‘n’ Belle 


This fully vegan restaurant is one of my favorite places I’ve been to here, which is why I’m so sad that it’s closing soon! If you have the chance you definitely should take it – the place has a really fun and relaxed rock ‘n’ roll vibe (try to bag the comfy armchairs by the window front) and both times I’ve been there I’ve loved every bite. I first went with my boyfriend for some burgers (his – the Manson Burger – was the best!) and another time I had “Vish” fingers (tasted like the real thing) with pumpkin mash and creamy spinach. So so good.




Vegan Velo


This little joint is located in the Seefeld area, near the lake, and will deliver any food you order before 10 am to you by bike. I once stopped by for the ‘cactus burrito’, which was yummy (and very spicy!!), but a bit small. Maybe it’s because I’d just come from a workout, but I could have eaten three of those things! Nevertheless, I’d definitely try more of their food – maybe I’ll order some to work sometime.





This plant-based place offers healthy options, most of which are vegan (it’s possible to add things like eggs or cheese). I have slightly mixed feelings about this place, as my first two visits there left me feeling quite disappointed. I definitely do not recommend the açai bowl (go to Juicery 21 instead – cheaper and so much better!), which was watery and almost tasteless, and the “power bread” was nothing special. Why am I including this place here? I recently went back to try one of their savory bowls, and I absolutely loved it! ‘Khaled’s Favorite‘ is a bowl of quinoa, kale, aubergine, cauliflower, chickpeas, avocado, pomegranate, fresh mint, slivered almonds and lime – so delicious! I was initially a bit irritated by the fact that the white hummus sauce is not vegan (it contains yogurt), but the incredible tomato balsamic dressing completely made up for this. Conclusion: I’d go back for Khaled’s Favorite, and try other savory bowls – for breakfast options I’d go elsewhere.






This place focuses on fresh, nourishing ingredients and, while not fully plant-based, does offer vegan options. I’ve had their smoked tofu burger (with hummus and in a wholewheat bun) and, more recently, the ‘Fall by Fanny‘ bowl (black rice, pumpkin, carrots, purple cabbage, marinated tofu, fresh figs and mixed seeds), created by food blogger Fanny the foodie. It was a dream! Gärtnerei has several locations around Zurich as well as some stores.


Cupcake Affair 


This cute little place is not vegan, however, there is a vegan cupcake every Tuesday as well as a daily vegan mini cupcake. When I was there I had a matcha cupcake (yummy, but could have had a stronger matcha taste) and a delicious soy milk matcha latte. It’s definitely a nice little place to warm up in and have a little treat. Other locations are: Aarau, Berne and Basel. Speaking of cupcakes, Michelle’s cupcakes has vegan ones every day – I haven’t been yet, but it’s definitely on my list!


That’s it for today – I hope you enjoyed reading, and please let me know what you think of these places, and if you have any recommendations of your own!

Have a lovely weekend!


P.S. For more information on vegan options around Zurich, definitely check out @vegansofzuri 🙂




Dubai Holiday – Food Spots

Hello and happy Friday!

I was in Dubai recently for a relaxing beach holiday with my sister. We had an amazing time soaking up the sun and stunning views, exploring some of Downtown Dubai and eating good food. It’s an incredible place and I’d love to go back again to discover more!

While we spent most of the time at the beach, enjoying the warmth and working on our tan (a wishful endeavor in my case – still pale), I do have a few recommendations I’d like to share with you.

Fairmont the Palm


First off, the hotel we stayed at was truly amazing. Fairmont the Palm is perfectly situated on the stem of the Palm Jumeirah, providing incredible views of the city. In terms of the food I honestly wasn’t quite sure what to expect. I’d inquired ahead of time about vegan options and had been assured that wouldn’t be a problem. And indeed, I was spoiled for choice at the Flow Kitchen buffet – from the creamiest hummus, moutabel (eggplant dip) and my favorite ‘burghul bi banadoura‘ (tomato bulgur) to cold soba noodle salad, veggie sushi, fresh and cooked vegetables, sweet potato mash and tofu curry, there were all kinds of wonderful things. Most of our meals were at the hotel, but we never got tired of them, as there were always new options alongside some yummy staples (hummus all day every day 😉 ). Breakfast left me with slightly less choice than my sister, but the choice I did have was delicious. I always went for the same: fresh fruit with amazing homemade granola topped with berry compote, nuts and soy milk. (I’d sometimes have some whole wheat toast and jam after). The only caveat is that vegan options are not specifically labeled, but, for me, there were enough obviously plant-based dishes so that I didn’t have to inquire about everything.



The hotel also has other places to eat, our favorite being Little Miss India – an Indian (no surprise there) restaurant with a wonderfully eclectic feel to it. The staff immediately asked about intolerances/special dietary requirements, and were quick to help me find dairy-free options. Both times there I went for turmeric & ginger cauliflower with saffron rice, which I’d have again and again! Absolutely incredible flavor.



Common Grounds


This cute little place in the Mall of the Emirates has lots of lovely options – not all vegan, but they do have really nice breakfast things (including buckwheat pancakes), as well as an all-day açai bowl and lattes – my kind of place 😉 It also feels quite relaxed and bright.



Super Natural Kitchen


We almost didn’t find this place, as it wasn’t listed in the Dubai Mall directory – but that’s only because it’s located in the Galleries Lafayette (2nd floor). This little raw vegan place is an absolute gem! Just looking at the menu filled me with joy.  I went for the banana pancakes, açai bowl and matcha frappe – all of which I totally recommend! The only thing I didn’t quite like was the açai bowl topping (basically just a lot of pistachios and other nuts, versus granola). Definitely one not to miss in my opinion!

That’s it for this trip – I’d love to go back someday and try more of what Dubai has to offer!

Have a great weekend 🙂




London Vegan Guide (continued II)

Hello and happy Friday!

Time is flying, Christmas is nearing, and I still haven’t uploaded a post about my most recent trip to London from earlier this month! So, without further ado, let me share some of the food spots where I had delicious plant-based meals while catching up with friends.

Wulf and Lamb



This fully vegan restaurant near Sloane Square is an exciting new addition to the London vegan scene, and a must-visit in my eyes. They serve breakfast (including a unique scramble made of “ackee” – a fruit notably used in Jamaican cuisine) lunch & dinner and desserts, including amazing looking cupcakes by Rubys of London). I went there for lunch, and I strongly (!) recommend getting the Wulf Burger (made with seitan and comes in a dreamy brioche bun with cashew aioli, sauerkraut and perfect potato wedges) AND (trust me!) a side of mac & cheese. This was honestly one of the best meals out I’ve had in a long time. Tip: go sit upstairs – it’s much nicer!


Farm Girl Cafe (1 Carnaby Street)



While Farm Girl Cafe is not a new one for me (it’s in my Ultimate London vegan food guide), this was my first time going to the recently opened one inside the Carnaby St Sweaty Betty store. The space upstairs is beautiful and has a great vibe. As expected, the food was absolutely delicious. I had the pitaya bowl, which was probably the best I’ve had! Tip: ask for nut butter (they have almond butter) on top if, like me, you’re nut butter obsessed. I also couldn’t resist trying the (blue) Butterfly Matcha, which didn’t actually taste like matcha though. That’s probably because blue matcha apparently isn’t actually green tea, but is made from a flower known as butterfly pea or blue pea. It had a nice, mild taste that reminded me of saffron, but I probably wouldn’t order it again. It was definitely worth it for the novelty of it, but taste-wise I’d rather have a regular old green matcha next time 😉

Mr Bao 



This Taiwanese joint in Peckham is another must! A friend brought it to my attention as they recently added vegan baos to the menu – and who can resist a good steamed bun? Not me, that’s for sure. There is a shiitake mushroom bao and a tofu bao, which was an absolute dream! I tried to eat it as slowly as possible, to savor the wonderful softness of the dough as well as the incredible flavor! We also had some sides, including the delicious sesame spinach (fresh spinach with a fantastic dressing), tenderstem broccoli and sweet potato chips. It was a wonderful meal. Just make sure to book a table in advance!

Yum Chaa Cafe



To fuel my extensive walking around London I had to stop by the Yum Chaa cafe on Berwick St (there are also other locations) for a wonderful almond milk hot chocolate and (warm!) banana bread. This is the same banana bread I had during the yoga & mindfulness workshop of theirs I was kindly invited to a few months ago, and it’s absolutely delicious. Not all the bakes are vegan, but there definitely are some plant-based options, and all the drinks can be made with plant milk. They also have a massive selection of their speciality teas that I definitely recommend checking out. (I talk a bit more about their teas in my Yumchaa Indian Summer Porridge post). I also love the interiors of the cafes – perfect for a catch-up with friends or a little solitary recharge from bustling London 😉



This asian-pacific-inspired restaurant located in the gorgeous hotel The Ned (near Bank station) has been on my list for a while due to the amazing things on their breakfast menu. The morning I went there the options were somewhat limited, however, as the chef had not turned up that day – no black rice porridge for me! There were some smoothie bowls ready in the take away fridge though, so I wasn’t too disappointed. I had the pitaya smoothie with an oat milk matcha latte – a wonderful start to the day. If you’re at the Ned I also highly recommend Malibu Kitchen for dinner (this is also on my more comprehensive London vegan guide).

Doughnut Time



I came across this little food spot after my banana bread and hot chocolate at Yum Chaa (see above), on my way to lunch at Salad Pride (also in my ultimate guide) and more extensively here).  Walking down Shaftesbury Avenue I spotted donuts, so of course I asked if they happened to have any vegan ones. I did not expect a yes, the whole middle shelf is vegan (!!) and simply had to get one. The ‘Jolly AF’ was an epic chocolate-covered donut with cookie dough on top and tasted like a proper, indulgent, all-out donut. (The Crosstown vegan chocolate truffle one is still my all-time favorite, but I definitely recommend checking out the Doughnut Time ones; they also have awesomely wacky names – Veruca Salt anyone?).

That’s it for this trip – hopefully I’ll be back with more London recommendations in the future 😉




Gingerbread Cookies

Hello and happy Tuesday!

I’m back with another recipe – just in time for Christmas, if you still have some festive baking to do 😉

Gingerbread cookies are probably my favorite festive bake, as they’re just so much fun to make and decorate (especially while singing along to Christmas music)! Last year I was too busy trying to keep up with the demand for mince pies to make any other bakes. This year, however, I went straight in for my first ever plant-based gingerbread men. I made a batch yesterday and another today – slightly sweeter in taste and thinner and crispier in texture – which I am very happy with (as evidenced by the undisclosed amount I have already eaten).

As I didn’t want to make a traditional icing with powdered sugar, I experimented with a tahini-based one (sweetened with maple syrup and lucuma) which I absolutely love.

I hope you enjoy these cookies too if you give them a go!




Makes: ca. 12-16 cookies (medium sized gingerbread men/similar shapes)

  • 130 g wholemeal spelt flour (ca. 1 cup)
  • 80 g buckwheat flour (ca. 1/2 cup)
  • 1 tbsp ground flaxseeds
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • pinch of cloves
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 1/2 tbsp coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tbsp molasses
  • 4 tbsp maple syrup
  • 130 g soft dates (I used these Sukari dates from Palmyra – ca. 9 – but medjool would be perfect as well)
  • 2 tbsp rice milk


  • 6 tsp tahini*
  • 6 tsp maple syrup
  • 3 tsp lucuma**
  • liquid food coloring
  • rice milk, to make it more liquid if needed

* If you don’t have tahini or simply prefer a more neutral icing, almond or cashew butter will probably work just as well (I haven’t tried this though).

**The lucuma adds some sweetness but also acts to thicken the icing. If you don’t have any, cornflour may be a possible alternative or otherwise skip the rice milk (I haven’t tried this variation though, so just experiment until you get the desired consistency).


  1. Combine the dry ingredients (flours, ground flaxseeds and spices) in a mixing bowl, before adding the molasses and melted coconut oil.
  2. Blend together the dates and the maple syrup to form a sweet paste, before adding to the mixing bowl. Combine the ingredients with your hands, adding 2 tbsp of rice milk so that it all comes together nicely. Form the dough into a disk, cover with clingfilm and leave somewhere cool (the fridge – or outside if it’s also cold where you are!) for around 30 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, make the tahini icing by combining the tahini, maple syrup, lucuma and food coloring in a cup or small container. You can easily make more or less by adjusting the ingredients accordingly. If by the time you are ready to ice your cookies you find the icing too thick, add a dash of rice milk. (Rather add too little than too much, as it’s easier to add more liquid than to thicken the icing up again).
  4. Roll out the dough and cut out the desired shapes. The amount you get will depend on the shapes you use as well as the thickness of the dough. I like the dough rolled out quite thin so the cookies become nice and crisp in the oven – a thicker dough will make doughier cookies.
  5. Bake in a preheated oven at 175 °C for ca. 8-12 minutes (depending on the thickness).
  6. Leave to cool completely (on the tray for a few minutes, then on a cooling rack/ or outside) before icing your lovely cookies. (Note: the icing does harden a bit, but do be gentle with your iced cookies/ i.e. I wouldn’t recommend stacking them on top of each other).

Happy festive baking!




Vegan Grittibänz

What on earth is a Grittibänz?! you may rightly be wondering. My fellow Swiss will, however, know these little bread men as a traditional treat we eat on December 6th, Saint Nicholas Day, along with clementines and chocolates.

Baking being something I’ve always loved, I started making them myself a few years ago, each time searching for an ever better recipe and the “right” technique to get soft and fluffy little men (and women), instead of ones that hardened as soon as they cooled.

As I was still in London this time last year, this is the first time since going plant-based that I have made Grittibänz and – I’m not saying this to be dramatic – these vegan ones are seriously the best I’ve ever made! So of course I want to share this recipe with you. Not only for all the Swiss who make these each year, but for anyone wanting a piece of Swiss culture or just a good recipe for vegan enriched bread dough. You obviously don’t have to form little men out of this dough, but can make rolls, form a plat (we call this bake a Zopf or Züpfe) or make whatever you want and eat it all year round.

The recipe I used is from the Swiss Vegan Society (Vegane Gesellschaft Schweiz). I have translated it into English and adapted it slightly (leaving out the vegan egg replacement, as I found it unnecessary) as well as changing the technique, based on my previous experience with handling dough.


  • 500 g Zopfmehl – this is a special kind of flour made of white flour and spelt (which makes it more elastic); if you can’t get a hold of this, regular white flour (maybe mixed with some light spelt flour) should be fine as well
  • 1 level tbsp salt
  • 80 g soft margarine (I used this one by Alnatura – which also contains walnut oil)
  • 1/2 40 g cube of fresh yeast (the recipe gives the alternative of using a sachet of dry yeast)
  • 1/2 tbsp maple syrup (optional)
  • 2.5 dl rice milk (lukewarm)
  • To decorate: raisins, nuts, chocolate chunks etc.


  1. Warm the rice milk if straight from the fridge (it should not be hot, just lukewarm), add the maple syrup, if using, and crumble the yeast into the liquid.
  2. Measure the flour into a large mixing bowl, add the salt to one side of it (you don’t want it getting in contact with the yeast at this early stage). With your hand, form a hollow in the center of the flour into which you pour the rice milk and yeast mixture. Sprinkle a tiny bit of flour on to the surface of this “lake” and let this rest for 5-10 minutes. (Ideally you’ll see some bubbles start to form).
  3. Next add the soft margarine and knead everything together to a smooth, elastic dough. (I used my KitchenAid with the dough hook attachment for around 10 minutes. Either way, test the dough by seeing how far it will stretch before breaking apart. It should be quite stretchy).
  4. Place into a bowl, cover with clingfilm, and leave somewhere warm to rise for ca. 1 hour 45 min/ 2 hours. (My oven was still a tad warm from baking sweet potatoes 2-3 hours before, so I put the bowl in there 😉 ).
  5. Once risen, divide the dough into four equal rounds and form into the desired shape. To make a Grittibänz shape check out this video I found, as it’s easier to see it than to read about it (skip to minute 2). Feel free to make whatever shape you desire, just note that the oven time may vary depending on how thick or thin you make the dough.
  6. Decorate any way you like – e.g. using raisins for the eyes of the Grittibänz – and then leave the Grittibänz to rest for about 15 minutes, while you preheat the oven to 200 ° C (not on fan).
  7. Optional but recommended: before putting the Grittibänz into the oven, up the temperature and put two little dishes of water on a tray and into the oven, to create some steam. This should help your bakes rise and also retain that lovely softness. Take the dishes out and switch the temperature back to 200 ° C before putting your Grittibänz into the oven.
  8. Brush some rice milk onto the Grittibänz and bake for about 20 minutes or until baked through. They should be a nice golden color. Leave to cool before eating.



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