Healthy Vegan Pancakes

Hello and happy Sunday!

I’ve had a wonderful weekend filled with workouts and lots of good food with friends, enjoying the gorgeously golden autumnal weather here in Zurich. It’s a beautiful time of year and I’m feeling very mindful and satisfied with enjoying the little things, like the yellow and orange leaves on the ground, the smell of chestnuts in the air and lighting candles in my apartment while catching up with friends or cooking my Sunday meal prep.

One thing that is always part of a good weekend, if you ask me, is some soul-satisfying brunch food. And while my go-to is usually a smoothie bowl, I also have a never-ending love affair with  pancakes… They remind me of childhood and taste super indulgent, while actually being really nourishing (well, these ones at least 🙂 ). They’re also very quick to whip together and only take a few minutes to cook – perfect for when you’re hungry after a weekend workout or just in the mood for something comforting.

Easy to vary, this is the basic recipe I use when making pancakes for myself. You could sub some of the flour for cacao powder, add some nut butter or play around with different spices. I’ve also made turmeric pancakes as well as a saffron version once – you just can’t go wrong!

Serves: 1 hungry individual

Ingredients:

  • 80g flour (such as wholemeal spelt or buckwheat)
  • 3/4 large, ripe banana
  • ca. 110 ml plant mylk (I like oat or rice)
  • 1 tbsp ground flax-/chia seeds
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • ground vanilla bean
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • oil for cooking (e.g. coconut oil)
  • optional: a little bit of sweetener, like rice/date/maple syrup

Serve with:

  • the rest of the banana, sliced
  • nut butter (I like almond for pancakes)
  • fresh or frozen fruit
  • maple syrup
  • hemp seeds

Method:

  1. Mash the banana and stir together with the flax/chia seeds and mylk.
  2. Stir together the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, salt, ground vanilla & cinnamon), before combining with the banana mix.
  3. Heat some oil in a non-stick pan and cook the pancakes on medium-high heat for ca. 1-2 minutes on each side.
  4. Serve as desired and enjoy!

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Harissa-Tahini Chickpea & Veggie Stir-Fry

Hello and happy Sunday!

Now that fall has arrived I’m loving cooking warming and slightly heartier dishes, such as this harissa-flavored chickpea stir-fry with mushrooms, kale, aubergine & carrots. I’ve served it with my go-to turmeric quinoa, but you can just as well accompany it with some brown rice, wholewheat pasta, potatoes etc.

Serves: 4-5

Ingredients:

  • 1 red onion, chopped
  • optional: 1 small red chilli, deseeded & finely chopped
  • coconut or olive oil, for cooking
  • 1 x 400g tin of chickpeas, drained (skins off, if you have the time)
  • 2 large carrots, peeled & chopped into small cubes
  • 2 small or 1 larger aubergine, chopped into cubes
  • 2 large stems of kale (or 2 large handfuls)
  • ca. 6-8 small mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 3 heaped tbsp runny tahini
  • 3 tsp of harissa spice mix
  • 1 tbsp sambal oelek / chili sauce
  • salt, to taste
  • optional: 1 tsp smokey paprika

Serve with: quinoa (ca. 80g uncooked quinoa per person), brown rice, wholewheat or spelt pasta, potatoes, etc.

Instructions:

  1. Heat the oil in a large pan or wok and cook the chopped onion, chili & carrots for a few minutes, stirring often. Next add the chickpeas, harissa & paprika powder as well as the tomato purée, sambal oelek and salt. Cook for a few more minutes.
  2. Add in the chopped aubergine and cook until soft.
  3. Next pour over the tahini and stir until incorporated, before adding the sliced mushrooms and, a few minutes later, the kale. Cook for another few minutes until everything is combined and cooked through.
  4. Do a taste test and season with more salt or spices, if desired.
  5. Serve with the quinoa.

Enjoy!

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Healthy Chocolate Mousse Bowl

Hello and happy Sunday!

Sometimes all you crave is something rich and chocolatey – whether for dessert or, like me yesterday, for breakfast. That’s why I created this creamy concoction out of wholesome fully plant-based ingredients. The banana, sweet potato and dates are a nutritious source of carbs (lots of fiber, vitamins and minerals), the avocado and flaxseeds provide healthy fats and the cacao is chockfull of antioxidants. This powerhouse combo is also super filling and should keep you satiated for quite a while.

You could also serve this up after dinner in little glass jars for a smaller portion of goodness.

Ingredients (serves 1 or 2, depending on whether or not you’re sharing 😉 )

Chocolate Mousse

  • 1 ripe banana
  • ca. 80g sweet potato (cubed, cooked)*
  • 1/2 ripe avocado
  • 2 large, soft dates
  • 2 tbsp cacao powder
  • 1 tbsp flaxseeds

* I used frozen sweet potato for a more smoothie bowl-like vibe, but do whatever is more preferable / practical.

Toppings:

  • Granola – I used the Original from Nuts & Friends, a new brand of homemade. organic granola from Zurich, which I kindly got sent to try and absolutely loved! It only uses ‘honest’ ingredients (by that I mean ingredients you would use if making it in your own kitchen yourself) and has an amazingly warm and subtly sweet flavour, enhanced by the added vanilla and cinnamon. There are also two more flavours (the Basic and the Kokos) to check out.
  • Fresh strawberries, or other berries
  • Nut butter, I used cashew butter but peanut or almond would work well too

Instructions

  1. Blend together the banana, sweet potato, avocado, dates and flaxseeds.
  2. Stir in the cacao powder and do the taste test – if you prefer it sweeter you can add more dates or some maple syrup.
  3. Serve with delicious toppings – the granola adds a great contrasting crunch and the strawberries a burst of fruity freshness.

IMG_8653Enjoy!

P.S. Let me know if you try this and feel free to tag me on Instagram (@blueberrysmiles22) if you’re sharing it there – would love your feedback 🙂

Simple Smoothie Bowls: Mango Spinach & Cherry Blueberry

Hello and happy Sunday!

My love of smoothie bowls knows no bounds, especially during summer time. There is nothing more refreshing, nourishing and satisfying to me than a vibrant smoothie bowl with an array of gorgeous toppings. The fact that they’re so easy to whip up and don’t require any ingredients you can’t keep stored, makes them such a great breakfast, snack or even lazy weekday dinner.

There is no exact recipe I follow, but as I’ve received some questions I decided to share two variations of my super basic, standard smoothie recipe.

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Cherry & Blueberry Smoothie Bowl

Blend:

  • 1 large banana (or 1.5 smaller ones)*
  • 1 cup (ca. 120g) of frozen cherries & frozen blueberries
  • 1 tbsp flax and/or chia seeds

Mango & Spinach Smoothie Bowl

Blend:

  • 1 large banana (or 1.5 smaller ones)*
  • ca. 1/2 cup (or ca. 100g) frozen mango
  • 1 tbsp flax and/or chia seeds
  • ca. 1/2 cup frozen spinach (or more for extra greenness)

For both versions:

*I like using unfrozen bananas along with my frozen fruit. If I’m looking for a more ‘nice cream’-like texture I’ll use frozen (sliced) banana.

Toppings:

  • fresh, frozen or dried fruit – add sliced banana, fresh raspberries, kiwi cubes, goji berries, dried mulberries, passionfruit or whatever you have around or are craving
  • nut butter – this is a MUST in my eyes; whether peanut, almond or cashew butter, the nutty creaminess is a great complement to the silky smooth fruity-ness and the healthy fats in the nut butter allow your body to absorb the fat-soluble nutrients in the smoothie
  • granola – this adds a wonderful crunch and is a way to add some whole grains to your meal (I like to look out for wholesome ones with as little sweetener as possible, or make my own when I have time)
  • nuts & seeds – great for more crunch and nutrition; my favourite are hemp seeds; I’ve also found that pistachios go really well with cherry smoothies

Notes:

  • If you prefer a runnier texture or your blender is struggling, add 1-2 tbsp plant-based milk, such as rice or oat milk.
  • For an extra creamy smoothie bowl add 1/2 an avocado to the blender!
  • These are an ideal base for playing around with – e.g. you can also add some frozen spinach to your cherry blueberry smoothie (you won’t be able to taste it), you can add ‘superfoods’ such as maca or protein powders and use a bit of/ more liquid depending on your texture preference. For extra protein you can also add some sneaky silken tofu 😉
  • If you want your smoothie to go (e.g. at work), bring the smoothie and the toppings separately and assemble just before eating. You can also blend the nut butter into the smoothie to avoid bringing that along.

Enjoy!

 

Falafel Pitas with Tahini Sauce

Hello and happy Sunday! {ad}

You may remember the #grillitarier campaign by Migros, which is all about celebrating summer and firing up the barbecue. I shared the following vegan bbq recipes in collaboration with Migros last year:

And today I’m delighted to share this super simple recipe for filled (or topped) pita breads, using the falafels from Cornatur. It’s an easy way to turn these chickpea-based bites into a satisfying summer dish (serves 4).

Ingredients:

  • 4 pita breads
  • 1 packet falafels (I used these)
  • 130g plain soy yogurt
  • 3 tbsp tahini
  • 1 pinch of salt (I used the chili sea salt from Migros)
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • 1 bunch coriander, chopped
  • fresh arugula
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • pomegranate seeds

 

Method:

  1. For the sauce: combine the yogurt, tahini, lime juice, salt and ca. 3/4 of the coriander.
  2. Cut the pitas open half way on the sides and dab some water onto both sides.
  3. Grill the pita breads on both sides while also cooking the falafels on the grill.
  4. Either fill (or top) the pita breads with the tahini dressing, washed arugula, falafels and sliced avocado, topping with pomegranate seeds and the rest of the coriander for extra flavor. Enjoy!

This recipe embodies my personal Grill Rule: Always dress to impress 😉 A tasty dressing and extra little garnishes are what can take simple ingredients to the next level.

Do you have a grill rule or tip to share?

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

Hello and happy Monday!

After sharing some recommendations for plant-based eating in my last two posts, I’m finally back with another recipe. I’ve been making this fully plant-based banana bread pretty much weekly lately, as it’s so quick to throw together and perfect for snacking on at work or enjoying on the couch with a cup of tea. I love how fudgy it is when I don’t bake it quite through and how melty the dark chocolate chunks are, before the loaf cools!

The fact that it’s made from simple and nutritious ingredients and is only sweetend with fruit and maple syrup makes it even more irresistible (#begoodtoyourself 😉 ) and the perfect staple bake for week nights or lazy weekend mornings.

The recipe is actually an adaption from my Pumpkin PB Chocolate Chip Mini Loaves, which are perfect for fall. Definitely check them out too if you enjoy this recipe.

Makes ca. 6-8 slices.

Ingredients:

  • 250g mashed banana (i.e. ca. 2 large-ish bananas, peeled)
  • 2 tbsp ground flax- and/or chia seeds
  • 100g soft dates*
  • 5 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup natural, unsalted peanut butter (almond/cashew/hazelnut should work too)
  • 1/4 cup (65 ml) plant-based milk
  • 130g wheat or spelt flour (wholemeal or regular; buckwheat flour should work too for a gluten-free version, but I haven’t tested this yet)
  • 1/2 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp ground vanilla bean
  • 1 pinch salt (unless using salted nut butter)
  • Ca. 50g chocolate of choice (I use 75-85%), chopped
  • optional extras:
    • spices (e.g. cinnamon, cardamom)
    • chopped nuts: peanuts, walnuts, pecans, hazelnuts etc.
    • dried berries: cranberries, raisins, goji berries etc.

* E.g. medjool or sukkari (I order ‘sukkari cooking’ dates from Palmyra Delights: Swiss website / EU website and am obsessed with them!). If your dates are on the dry side, try soaking them in hot water and draining before blending.

Method:

  1. Combine the mashed banana with the ground flax/chia seeds and set aside.
  2. Blend together the dates, maple syrup, plant milk and peanut butter and combine with the banana mixture (don’t forget to lick the spoon – it’s divine 🙂 ).
  3. Stir together the flour, baking powder, vanilla and salt (and spices) and combine with the rest of the batter. Finally, add in the chocolate chunks and chopped nuts and/or dried berries if using.
  4. Pour the mixture into a small loaf tin that you’ve greased (e.g. with coconut oil) or lined with baking parchment and bake in an oven preheated to 180°C for ca. 35-40 minutes. Oven times vary, so keep an eye on your bake. The top should be firm to the touch but the middle should still be slightly moist. Leave to cool in the tin for at least 10 minutes.
  5. Serve as is or with some extra nut butter, jam and/or (n)ice cream.

Note: Once cooled, you can slice and freeze this cake to save for later.

I hope you enjoy!

Celine

P.S. Tag me (@blueberrysmiles22) if you share your bake on Instagram! I’d love to know your feedback. 

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Chestnut Hazelnut Squares

Hello and happy Saturday!

Thursday, November 1 was World Vegan Day – a day for celebrating veganism, brought into life by The Vegan Society of the UK in 1994, 50 years after the term “vegan” was conceived. And what better way to celebrate it than to eat lots of fabulous plant-based food with other vegans/vegan-friendly people?

Here in Switzerland, the Vegan Society of Switzerland (Vegane Gesellschaft Schweiz) hosts an awesome annual potluck on November 1st. This year they kindly reached out to me, asking if I would like to bring some dessert and share the recipe, which is where these Chestnut Hazelnut Squares come in. They may not sound very sexy, but I can’t get enough of them: soft yet substantial, sweet and nourishing. Paired with a cup of hot chocolate or a turmeric latte they’re my favorite fall treat and personal epitome of autumnal “hygge 🙂

Chestnut Hazelnut Squares

Makes: 12 squares

Ingredients:

  • 400g cooked and peeled chestnuts (much easier if you can buy them like this)
  • 100g ground hazelnuts
  • 180 ml plant-based mylk (rice or hazelnut are my favorite here)
  • 120g soft dates (I always use these for my baking)
  • 2 tbsp ground flaxseeds
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 50g hazelnut chocolate (I use White Nougat Crisp from iChoc, which is heavenly!)
  • 30g of the same chocolate, chopped
  • 2 tbsp hazelnut butter

Method:

  • Grind the chestnuts into a course flour and combine with the other dry ingredients (ground hazelnuts, flaxseeds and salt) in a large bowl.
  • Heat up the mylk and melt 50g of the chocolate in it. Mash up the dates with a fork, add the mylk-chocolate mixture and hazelnut butter and blend the mix.
  • Add the liquid to the dry mixture and combine thoroughly, before stirring in the chocolate chunks (I saved a few to sprinkle on top).
  • Fill the thick, lumpy mixture into a loaf tin lined with baking paper and heat in an oven preheated to 180°C for ca. 30-40 minutes. It should be firm enough to hold together but not dry in the middle. Leave to cool in the tin for a few minutes, at least, before taking out and slicing into squares.

To turn this into a slightly more fancy dessert, serve warm with some ice cream, berry compote and a drizzle of hazelnut butter!

For more Potluck Recipe contributions and vegan goodness check out Vegan.ch.

Enjoy 🙂

xoxo

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Maca, Peanut & Salted Date Quinoa Granola Crumbs

Hello and happy Sunday!

It’s been a while since my last post, so I’m happy to finally be back with another recipe 🙂 Most of September I was on holiday in Indonesia (there will be some blog posts with lots of great vegan recommendations coming!) and somehow I just didn’t have any time or energy to dedicate to my blog or food photography.

But never mind that now, let’s talk about these crunchy, deliciously sweet & salty, nourishing, comforting and super speedy Maca, Peanut & Salted Date Quinoa Granola Crumbs. A serious mouthful. What is it exactly? Not chunky enough for granola, yet still kind of clumpy, I wasn’t quite sure what to call this mix (“grumps” came to mind, but didn’t have quite the appeal I was going for), so I settled for “granola crumbs”. They can be sprinkled on top of smoothie bowls or fresh fruit or eaten on their own with mylk, for a satisfying (and seriously addictive!) snack.

As to the flavors: Maca – a root native to South America that can be bought in powdered form in health food stores – is one of my favorite “superfoods”. Its taste is subtle yet powerful (it often lingers after I eat it in my smoothies), mildly earthy but in a wonderfully sweet sense and it’s said to be “adaptogenic” (i.e. able to help the body deal with stressors and stabilize internal processes in a healthy way). It was also used by the Incas in Peru as a source of energy, nourishment and healing. I personally also find it to have a very “happy” flavor, if that makes any sense 🙂

In this recipe I’ve paired the maca with dates for sweetness, adding a bit of salt to evoke a salted caramel-like aroma, as well as my beloved peanut butter, as I find maca and peanuts are best friends. Here goes:

Ingredients:

  • 100g fine oats
  • 20g puffed quinoa
  • 2 tbsp ground flaxseeds
  • 2 tbsp maca powder *
  • a good pinch or two of salt
  • 100g soft dates, mashed
  • 2 1/2 tbsp “clumpy” peanut butter (if yours is runny, you may need less)
  • optional: 1/2 tsp ground vanilla bean

 

Method:

  • Mix together the oats, puffed quinoa, ground flaxseeds, maca powder, salt (and vanilla, if using).
  • Add the dates (mine are so soft I can simply squish them by hand) and peanut butter and combine the mixture by hand.
  • Heat in the preheated oven at 160°C (fan) until golden. Note: keep an eye on the oven – it only took me about 6 minutes, and one of the first batches almost burned!
  • Remove from the oven, leave to cool before storing in an airtight container (ideally in the fridge) or sprinkling on top of your smoothies.

Enjoy!

xoxo

 

* The maca I used is from Iswari Suisse , who I have been collaborating with for several months and whose products I love.

Green Protein Smoothie

Hello and happy Sunday!

Today I’m sharing another smoothie bowl. My go-to smoothie is my all-time favorite blueberry smoothie, but I do love a good green smoothie every now and then. Getting in some greens while enjoying a sweet bowl of deliciousness AND getting a protein boost sounds like a pretty good win-win situation to me.

The inspiration behind this green smoothie is the “Super Detox Protein” by Iswari, which consists of: rice protein, pea protein, hemp protein, spirulina, chlorella and matcha – 100% organic ingredients. As part of a collaboration with Iswari Switzerland, you can get 5% off any orders from Iswari Suisse with the discount code “blueberrysmiles” (disclaimer: I earn a small commission on such orders).

Incredibly simple, this combination of fruity sweetness and refreshing “greenness” is especially irresistible on a hot day. What I love about the Iswari mix is that it’s zingy from the matcha, but doesn’t taste “too green”, especially combined with sweet, ripe mango. If you can’t get your hands on this product, you can also replace it with your own proteins and green powders/matcha.

Ingredients:

  • 200g frozen mango cubes
  • 35g Super Detox Protein (or your own blend)
  • 1 tbsp rice mylk
  • Desired toppings – I used almond butter, fresh raspberries and granola

Method:

Blend the mango and rice mylk (if your blender tends to struggle with frozen ingredients you may need to let the mango defrost a bit and/or add more liquid) and stir in the protein blend. Pour into a bowl and enjoy with the toppings of your choice – I love adding nut butter, fresh berries and granola.

Enjoy!

xoxo

 

Nourishing Breakfast Waffles

Hello and happy Monday!

I’m back with another recipe, and this time we’re not firing up the grill but heating up the oven to prepare some delicious baked waffles. (Alternatively, feel free to try these with a traditional waffle-iron). I recently bought some silicone waffle molds and love how much easier it is to make waffles in the oven. You can make them all in one go and can pop the molds into the dishwasher to reduce clean- up 😉

I love these waffles for weekend breakfast, especially pre- or post-workout, as they’re not only tasty but also super nourishing and packed with good-for-you ingredients such as banana, dates, buckwheat flour and this nutty ground chia and flax seed mixture from Iswari. I created this recipe as part of a collaboration with Iswari Suisse – if you order anything from Iswari Suisse, you can get 5% off with the discount code “blueberrysmiles”. (Disclaimer: I earn a small commission on such orders).

Ok, enough talk, let’s get to the recipe!

Nourishing Breakfast Waffles

Makes: 6 medium waffles

Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe banana, mashed
  • 50g soft and sweet dates
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup + 1 tbsp rice mylk
  • 1 tsbp Omega 3 Mix (ground flax- and chia seeds)
  • 160g buckwheat flour
  • 1/2 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 tablespoon lucuma powder (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 heaped tbsp aquafaba (save the chickpea water from the tin and beat until it reaches a consistency close to beaten egg whites)
  • coconut oil for greasing
  • Recommended toppings: berries, banana, nut butter and maple syrup
  • Variations: substitute some of the buckwheat flour (or the lucuma powder) with matcha or acai powder, for example, to switch things up!

Method:

  1. Combine all the ingredients, gently folding in the aqua faba at the end.
  2. Grease the moulds with some coconut oil and divide the batter equally.
  3. Bake in an oven preheated to 180°C until golden brown and firm (this will depend on the oven – for me it takes around 15-20 minutes).
  4. Serve with your favorite toppings.

Enjoy!

xoxo