TPS Induction and Low-Fat Burgers with Coriander & Lime Houmous

Yesterday morning I went back to The People’s Supermarket, TPS, to have my induction.

I went to have my induction as I am going to do a shift there next Saturday to see how the supermarket works and then write more about what I think may be the most sustainable supermarket ever.

I previously wrote about going there and talking to one of the managers about the renovations that TPS was going to have after its partnership with Spar and it now looks great!

If you would like to know more about becoming a member of The People’s Supermarket, it’s incredibly easy to book yourself into an induction: all you have to do is e-mail membership@thepeoplessupermarket.org and choose  one of the induction times, they take place on Thursdays at 7pm, Fridays at 10.30am or Saturdays at 11am.

The induction was really interesting and went really quickly, I had a cup of tea and munched on one of their delicious (and gigantic!) fresh croissants while Tara explained the origins of TPS and explained members’ roles.

As a member of TPS you actually own part of the business and have a say in everything that goes on within it and all changes have to be approved through voting by the majority of members, and all new ideas have a chance to be put into actions and come to life as new projects, such as The People’s Supermarket Cookbook: isn’t that motivating?

After the induction I bought a few items and had 20% as I had had the induction that morning, members get 20% off all the time.

Sustainable Items from The People’s Supermarket

I bought a massive jar of organic roasted peppers, perfect in salads, for £3.60 -20% = £2.88

I also bought some organic English plain wholemeal flour, believe it or not I have been looking for plain wholemeal flour for a long time and couldn’t find it any Tesco, Sainsbury’s or Morrison’s, that was £.1.50 – 20% = £1.20 for 1kg.

I also got lovely fresh rolls, organic tofu and free range eggs from Devon.

~

To carry on with my meat-free sustainable BBQ food mood, last night I made low-fat Quorn burgers with home-made coriander and lime houmous, a twist on my vegan sausages baguette with houmous.

Quorn burgers are of course meat-free and have a really nice smokey flavour, I bought mine frozen and my meat-eater boyfriend really like them too 🙂

Quorn Burgers, tastyyyyy

Compared to Quorn fillets they have more ingredients and could be considered a bit more processed, but when I think of the fact that supermarket bought beef can contain dozens of cows’ meat all minced up together ( I heard this during an episode of Jimmy and the Giant Supermarket when he analysed beef meat balls’s DNA) and plenty of animal fat, I don’t even worry about Quorn burgers’ extra ingredients (such as wheat protein, natural flavourings and milk proteins).

The packet says that Quorn burgers have 60% less fat that standard frozen beef burgers and each burger contains 80 kcal and 3.7g fat, 1.3g saturated fat.

My version of the home-made houmous is low-fat as I didn’t have any tahini to add and also did not add any oil. I got the inspiration for this recipe from the Inspired to Share blog I follow.

Low fat Quorn burgers with home-made low-fat coriander & lime houmous

Ingredients for the houmous:

  • Bunch of fresh coriander, about 1/3 or 1/2 a cup
  • 2 jalapeño peppers (or more or less to taste), roughly chopped
  • 1 peeled clove of garlic
  • 3 tbsp freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 1 can of chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • Black pepper

-Add everything to a blender and whizz until smooth enough. Done! 🙂

It’s the first time I made houmous and it was so quick and easy! I’ll try experimenting with other ingredients and flavours next time!

For the burgers:

  • Quorn burgers, I had 2
  • Fresh wholemeal rolls
  • Dollops of the home-made low-fat coriander and lime houmous
  • fresh iceberg lettuce, torn
  • Cherry tomatoes, halved
  • Ketchup or any other sauce you fancy!

-Cook the Quorn burgers – I made mine in the microwave, from frozen to ready to eat in 2 and half minutes!

-Cut the rolls, spread a lovely dollop of the houmous and pile the burgers, lettuce, tomatoes and ketchup / spicy sauce etc.

Enjoy!

Low fat coriander and lime houmous, Quorn burgers and soft cocktail

You can use up the rest of the houmous as a healthy, light, vegan dip with fresh carrots, cucumber or peppers or use it as a tasty fragrant spread in sandwiches.

To go with the meal I made a soft cocktail that is a little inspired by mojito, I mixed Bottle Green ginger and lemongrass cordial to water and added lime wedges, torn mint leaves and ice. Absolutely delicious and super refreshing, try this and you won’t feel sorry for yourself when you can’t drink alcohol for whatever reason!

Ginger & Lemongrass cordial, fresh with a kick

Would you like to know more about The People’s Supermarket?

Have you tried meat-free burgers before? What do you think of them?

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Vegan Vagabonding – Vegan Day 27

Day 27 of my vegan challenge, and this week was interesting as I had the opportunity to see how easy or difficult it is to find vegan meals away from the comfort of your own kitchen.

On Sunday evening we went over to my boyfriend’s sister K’s house and everyone fancied take-away pizza.

Of course, as any respectable pizza take-away place, the menu from the place they were ordering from showcased a wide variety of whatever-meat-you-can-think-of-it’s-on-this-one pizzas, and the more vegetables-orientated ones had about a ton of cheese on them.

I think I did spot a vegan dish on that menu: side salad in a cardboard tub, which probably consisted of half a cucumber, 2 tomatoes and an old lettuce leaf. Lovely.

I went to Tesco, and after the first few panicky minutes while I was considering to have a plain dry crisp sandwich (YUK), I hopefully glided towards the freezers and found something that wouldn’t take much preparing or cooking time but would be tasty and vegan: potato wedges!!

Tasty Wedges

Tasty Wedges

The packet says “perfect for dipping and sharing” and these lightly spiced wedges were perfectly dipped into sweet chilli sauce and ketchup by me, but not shared as much as I practically ate them all myself!!

I love McCain’s adverts, they’re so cute!

The evening after that we went back to K’s home to have roast dinner, and my vegan version was a lovely plate full of delicious roasted vegetables!

After that, K said she had a raspberry sorbet and when she checked, we realised it was VEGAN!! My eyes nearly popped out as I marvelled at the tub, greatly anticipating the awaiting delight: it was just as delicious as it looked.

Delicious Raspberry Sorbet

My photo doesn’t do it justice, it’s such a vibrant colour!

Delicious Raspberry Sorbet from Sainsbury’s

I had been fancying ice cream and I was so happy this was vegan!

On Wednesday I met up with lovely C-N for the first time, who will hopefully be my Chinese language exchange.

We went to EAT to have grab a drink and sit down to chat, so I thought I’d finally try a hot drink with soy milk. I have tried soy milk before on its own and I do not like it.

I had a Chai Latte and even though, I admit it, the first sips made me pull some probably very weird expressions, but I quickly got used to the taste and in the end it was pretty enjoyable with a nice cinnamony taste.

On Thursday me, my boyfriend N, K and F all went to the theatre (still calling everyone by their initials like in the Andy Warhol book I read…).

We went to see “The Wizard of Oz” which was great (how does it all happen on one stage?!?) and before meeting up with everyone in Oxford Street I got a meal deal from Tesco…that was vegan! Yay!

OMG! A vegan Sarnie? Yes please!

I was so hungry, and when I started eating this it tasted like the nicest thing in the world!

Brown bread, grated carrots, spinach, houmous, carrot chutney: delicious, light and healthy!

I had it with orange juice and salted Kettle chips, which only contain potatoes, sunflower oil and salt, nothing else added. The best crisps ever!!!

I liked this sandwich so much that I tried to recreate it for yesterday’s lunch at work:

DIY Version

Noticeably messier but as tasty! My sarnie also had cherry tomatoes, lettuce instead of spinach, piri piri houmous, chunks of carrots rather than grated carrots and of course, chilli flakes!

After lunch and work I met up with my mates D ‘n’ A and we went to the Japan Centre in Piccadilly via Whole Foods.

I asked the lady at the Japan Centre which one of the soups were vegan and she said that all soup broths were either pork, beef, chicken or fish! Not even vegetarian! Gulp!

Fortunately another lady heard me say in a sad and desperate voice “But what am I going to eat??” so she said if I wanted to go to Itsu and bring the food back there to eat with my friends, it wouldn’t be a problem.

So off to Itsu I went, where I got a vegan Superbowl: spinach, French beans, mushrooms, peppers, beansprouts, carrots, leeks, tofu, cashew nuts, seaweed, brown rice and fragrant Thai sauce, yummy!!

I was very impressed with the Japan Centre’s recycling facilities, even for chopsticks and food waste:

Recycling Bins Make Me Happy

After the Japan Centre we went Starbucks, and after what seemed to be a fairly long dialogue with the Starbucks lady with me trying to tell her I didn’t want milk and her suggesting I had the hot chocolate that absolutely contained milk, I finally got my vegan hot chocolate with soy milk and a cinnamon island topping

Hot Chocolate with Soy Milk

I couldn’t taste the soy milk so much, it was utterly delectable and I will definitely have it again in the future, once my vegan pledge ends! My friends A ‘n’ D liked it too.

All in all, eating around and vegan meal hunting wasn’t too bad, have you ever had problems finding something that suited your needs or taste?

Edible Designer Baguette – Vegan Day 20

Day 20 of my vegan pledge and as it’s Saturday it’s treat day!

This time last week I wanted something full of flavour, satisfying and fun to eat, so I made the perfect eco vegan Saturday night meal: Vegan Sausages Baguettes: scrumptious!

Vegan Sausages Baguettes

Ingredients:

  • 1 small Baguette for each person (I used the ones that need baking so they would be warm);
  • 2 Vegan sausages for each person (I used Linda McCartney’s);
  • A few washed lettuce leaves;
  • A few cherry tomatoes, washed and cut in half;
  • A sliced spring onion;
  • A few thin red onion slices;
  • Houmous or ketchup (or both!);
  • Chilli flakes (optional).

All you need

Delicious vegan fillings

To prepare:

-Cook the vegan sausages and the bread following the pack instructions;

-Prepare all the vegetables;

-Assemble as you wish and Enjoy!

My meat-eater boyfriend LOVED it!

Hungry?

Tuck in!

Bursting with flavour…yummy!!

As an extra treat, I made rosemary and garlic fried potatoes to go with them…

Rosemary and garlic fried potatoes

If you want you can even use other types of bread such as ciabatta bread warmed up in the oven or even ordinary sliced bread for an extraordinary sarnie!

These Linda McCartney sausages are really nice, they have a really nice taste and texture, and are much healthier and have less fat (especially saturated) than ordinary pork sausages.

Linda McCartney Sausages

Linda McCartney was a photographer, musician and an animal rights activist who wrote several vegetarian cookbooks, including “Linda McCartney’s Home Cooking” and started her food company and married Paul McCartney in 1969. She lost her battle with cancer in 1998 but her legacy lives on.

She even appeared with Paul McCartney in a Simpsons episode!

Linda and Paul McCartney’s daughter Stella, is one of the most famous international fashion designers, but unlike the majority of designers she refuses to use leather or fur for her beautiful designs.

If you click on the link be prepared to know the awful truth about how animals suffer for this, and if it’s too hard to watch, keep listening to Stella’s message about how buying leather is directly contributing to the suffering of animals and how it is damaging the environment.

Have you ever tried vegetarian sausages?

Have you tried any of Linda McCartney’s vegetarian meals range?

My Salad Valentine – Vegan Day 8

Day 8 of my vegan challenge!

The first week is already over and I’m getting used to looking out for new vegan snacks and ingredients, I must say I have eaten far more vegetables and beans than usual the past week! All good so far!

Valentine’s day is few hours away, so I thought I’d show you my lunch for tomorrow: a lovely fresh vegan salad that -accidentally- contains a few vegan aphrodisiac ingredients.

This salad is fresh, appetising and has a variety of textures: the fresh feeling lettuce, tomatoes and spring onion, crunchy carrots and pumpkin seeds, salty olives, the kick of the chilli, the flavoursome sun-dried tomatoes…

Vegan Carroty Salad

Vegan Carroty Salad

Ingredients:

  • Lettuce leaves
  • 1 carrot
  • a few cherry tomatoes
  • 1 spring onion
  • a small handful of pumpkin seeds
  • a small handful of olives
  • 2 pieces of sun-dried tomatoes
  • chilli flakes (optional)
  • a dollop of houmous

First of all I washed  afew leaves of lettuce and tore the leaves by hand;

Scrub the carrot and chop it, by scrubbing it with a vegetable scrubber I know it’s clean and I don’t need to peel it and I can have the extra fibre;

Cut the cherry tomatoes in half;

Chop the spring onion;

Sprinkle the pumpkin seeds;

Add the sun-dried tomatoes;

Add the olives -without any brine- and chilli if you are using it;

Add a dollop of houmous, I used red roasted pepper houmous from Sainsbury’s, delicious!

I actually use the houmous as a sort of a dressing. When I first thought of this I couldn’t believe how lovely it was, so tasty! And if you’re being careful with what you eat, it’s a lot healthier that ordinary dressings.

Mix all together…Enjoy!!

Can’t wait for lunch!

For a filling lunch I am going to have an onion bagel with it, they’re so nice and I bought some cinnamon and raisins ones for a nice change from porridge for my vegan breakfast, exciting!!

What kind of salads do you like having for lunch?

Have you tried hummus as a healthy vegan salad dressing?