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This week, we say a big hello to Claire from Diary of the Evans-Crittens choosing her top ten vegetarian comfort foods. She lives in South West Wales with her partner and four children. She loves cooking as long as it doesn’t take too long or cost too much. She enjoys browsing other blogs for food inspiration when the reality of cooking tea every day for a family of six kicks in. Recipes with “hidden vegetables” to trick her kids into getting more than their five-a-day are particular favourites.
OVER TO CLAIRE…
As the evenings get darker and colder, I long for traditional family favourites that remind me of my childhood. I yearn for cottage pie and hearty soups – food to warm the soul as well as the belly. I haven’t eaten meat in over twenty years so I make and look for vegetarian versions of these classic dishes. Here are some of my favourite recipes I have found recently.
- During the summer we seem to live on cold picnic food for lunch. Now we’re into autumn, my youngest and I are once again enjoying hot food at lunchtime to keep us warm. One day this week we plan to make avocado, pea and goats cheese brushetta from Tinned Tomatoes, a vegetarian and vegan blog featuring over 500 recipes.
- Another filling lunchtime bite comes from Frugal Queen. Here she shows us how to make spinach and mushroom pancakes. Froogs blogs about meat recipes too, which can always be adapted to make meat free versions.
- Sweet potato quesadillas by Tangerine Canteen are both delicious and quick to make. On Lia’s blog she tries to be “healthy without being annoying” and to “use exciting ingredients without being pretentious”. I think she achieves both.
- Soup always goes down well in our house at this time of year, our favourites being vegetable and spicy parsnip. I like being reminded that there are other soups available to make too, such as the people’s French onion soup by Katie Loves Cooking. It takes just 30 minutes to cook and has the added bonus that there will be “leftover” wine which needs to be finished with the meal.
- When there’s a chill in the air, you can’t beat a chilli. One delicious chilli recipe to serve up is the Enchanted Pixie’s veggie chilli and flatbread, containing two types of beans this recipe is full of fibre and nutrients too.
- As well as quick food, I’m also a fan of one pot dishes such as A Mummy Too’s ridiculously smooth and creamy one-pot mac and cheese. I enjoy macaroni cheese and often eat Quorn but I’ve never before combined the two! One pot meals mean less washing up and are a good way to save time as the days get shorter.
- One of our own autumn favourites is vegetarian cottage pie, made with soy mince. Serve with vegetables and vegetarian gravy for a filling, hearty meal.
- At this time of year we often find ourselves adding dumplings or meatballs to our recipes. I haven’t made vegetarian meatballs from scratch before though so will definitely try out Allotment to Kitchen’s quinoa carrot meatballs in tamarind very soon.
- During late Summer and Autumn we love to forage for blackberries. We made a crumble and a pie but love to look for other ways to use up our harvest. Ninja Killer Cat shared a scrumptious foragers apple and blackberry upside down pudding on her blog this week that we will use for our next bounty of blackberries.
- Last but not least, we’ve all seen the one minute chocolate microwave cake, now The Beesley Buzz have perfected a mouthwatering minute make carrot cake. This is amazing! Mixed spice recipes are perfect for autumn and we often bake a carrot or other “healthy” cake at the weekend. Now we can whip one up in a minute during the week too!
I hope you get to enjoy some of your own comfort food this week. What are your favourite vegetarian recipes for autumn?