13 delicious HUMMUS combinations

When I saw this on SHAPE online today, I knew just had to share it. Hummus is like chocolate to me and a tub literally only lasts me about three days – I’ll eat spoons-full of it as is. I need to get out of the habit of adding it to my grocery basket and start blending it more myself. It is so damn easy and MUCH friendlier to my budget. The basics are always the same – rinse and drain your beans, choose your fresh flavours and blend everything till smooth. With this chart, I will most definitely be blending my own mixtures on a more regular basis. Just watch out – the ones containing Greek yogurt is not vegan so you need to use a replacement. Here’s to Hummus!

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Restaurant review: Mugg & Bean

I have always been a big fan of the legendary Mugg & Bean. I am completely addicted to their Mocca Java and House Blend coffees and love the fact that I can get up and serve myself whenever I want to. Their food has always been pretty darn good as well – a big menu offering you massive portions of delicious meals. What made me even more impressed though is that they also have VEGAN options on the menu and that they are quite accommodative in swopping food items to suit my vegan needs. They also offer soya milk as a replacement for normal milk at no extra cost (although I love my coffee black and bitter).

Since I have turned vegan, I have gone to the Canal Walk branch twice. First up was breakfast: They didn’t have a vegan breakfast on the menu, but they were completely happy with me ordering the M&B OTG breakfast and swopping the egg and bacon for grilled brown mushrooms and fried banana. Nom nom nom!

- M&B OTG breakfast with a bit of a twist

– M&B OTG breakfast with a bit of a twist

The second time around, my mom and I went for lunch during the middle of a very busy shopping-Sunday. My mom & dad actually told me about a Thai pot pie dish on the Mugg & Bean menu that said VEGAN next to it and thus I was quite intrigued to find out what it was. It was delicious – that is what it was! It is called the Thai Squash Pie (R65.90) which can be found under the comfort food section of the menu. It is made from oven-roasted butternut, sweet potato and mushrooms which is simmered in a Thai curry coconut milk sauce and topped with a crispy coriander breadcrumb topping. Strangely, I had pocket-potatoes instead of sweet potato in my dish, but it didn’t bother me much. (I would perhaps have a little bit less of the breadcrumb topping though as I am not the biggest breadcrumb fan). You experience a blast of sweet, spicy, crispy and creamy all in one bite. And to top it off you get a big portion of a basic green salad on the side. I strongly recommend this dish to all vegan friends out there – I literally liked the last drop of sauce out the bowl using my fingers. Very classy of me I know!

- M&B Vegan Thai Squash Pie

– M&B Vegan Thai Squash Pie

While paging through the menu I also spotted a vegan Moroccan Butternut, chickpea and carrot soup (R37.90)which I will go back for in winter.  Warning, they offer a lot of vegetarian dishes which are all marked with a V – these are not vegan. Both vegan dished are marked VEGAN on the menu.

For more information, you can have a look at the Mugg & Bean menu online here and follow them on Facebook here. I really appreciate restaurant willing to help out a vegan in need. Thank you Mugg & Bean and keep up the good work, I will definitely be back soon!

Four Just Popcorn flavors get the vegan stamp of approval

Just popcornI absolutely LOVE popcorn! Usually I would pop my own to ensure that is done in the healthiest way possible, but every now and again I crave it at work, in which I opt for Just Popcorn’s low-GI deliciousness – today was one of those days! However, it was the first time I had Just Popcorn since I turned vegan and I was quite taken aback when I read on the label that it is only suitable for lacto-vegetarians. The cheese, butter and cream cheese & chives flavours are understandable as it probably contains milk powder, but I held a packet of chutney flavour in my hands? So I took it upon myself to get to the bottom of this mystery…

I searched up their contact details online and called the Johannesburg head office (the Cape Town office line was busy – probably another vegan trying to source some answers). A very friendly operator named Kobus, picked up and listened carefully to my dilemma. He took down my details and promised to clarify the ingredients with the laboratory and get back to me soonest. Within 20 minutes I received a call-back from Kobus who confirmed that FOUR of their Just Popcorn flavours is indeed lactose-free! These flavours are:

  • Chutney
  • Mexican Chilly
  • Salt and Vinegar
  • And their original lightly salted flavour

The reason why some brands list milk as an allergy on their labels that due to the fact that the factory in which the product is made, makes use of it for other lactose-containing products. Thus, if by any chance the product you consume does contain lactose by mistake, they are covered from insurance claims.

I am just happy that I am still able to enjoy a bag of Just Popcorn from time to time. Thank you Kobus for being attending to my needs and getting back to me so promptly!

ABOUT JUST POPCORN:

Just Popcorn is produced using traditional oil poppers to ensure the best tasting popcorn combined with a low glycemic index and lower fat rating. Just Popcorn is a healthy snack endorsed by the Glycemic Index Foundation of South Africa (GIFSA) and is suitable for diabetics, slimmers and active people. Just Popcorn is sold at cafeterias in office complexes, universities, schools, supermarkets and convenience stores.

Contact details:

Help a vegan out…Please?

Since I am a newbie vegan, I don’t have all the modern kitchen equipment or a pantry full of beautiful raw produce needed to make delicious and nutritious vegan meals. I am slowly, but surely getting there, but still have a long way to go before I’m 100% vegan-equipped.

Luckily I came across the Wellness Warehouse’s LiveLifeWell competition where one South African contestant stand a chance of winning a complete LiveLifeWell Makeover worth R20 000!

  • This prize includes a R3000 Wellness Warehouse gift voucher
  • Over R7000 worth of products
  • Over R5000 worth of consultations and services
  • Over R5000 worth of beauty products and treatments.

The sponsor list is to dream about:  BodyPillow, Spine Align, Reviva Tech, Yoga Shmoga, Just Sports, Aromatic Apothecary, Dea Organics, Neotrading, Soaring Free Superfoods, Skinny Tan, Face 2 Fresh, Follow the Sun Yoga with Sharni Quinn, Nutritionist Kelly Schreuder, SleekGeek South Africa, and Paleo Monkey.

- Please VOTE for me to win & make all my vegan dreams come true?

– Please VOTE for me to win & make all my vegan dreams come true?

This is EXACTLY what I need to launch my veganism in the right direction and finish my transformation! But to win this fantastic prize, I need my veggie-friends’ help please???

HOW YOU CAN HELP: I need you to take a mere 3 seconds and vote for me online in 3 easy steps:

  1. Click here to go to the competition page: https://www.facebook.com/wellnesswarehouse?sk=app_520658091282712
  2. Look for my picture and name (Leozette Roode) and click on VOTE
  3. Then, click on the block that says Sign in with Facebook and thereafter click OKAY (nothing will happen to your Facebook and you will not get spammed, promise)

NOTE: If you are using your mobile, please use this link: http://fb-app-contrib-compare-b.evly.com/Mobi/EntryDetail/78917

- My picture to look out for between the entires

– My picture to look out for between the entries

I would really really appreciate your help in making this dream of mine come true! Have a look at my profile and please do VOTE if you feel that I am a worthy candidate. You will reap the benefits when I review and share all the goodies on CT Veganista ;)

I thank you all in advance… May the favour be returned upon you!

My Vegan Valentine – chocolate & avo truffles

I don’t have the sweetest tooth, but I do adore a bit of chocolate every once in a blue moon. Before going vegan, I loved the Lindt Chocolate balls that melt away in your mouth and so I knew that I needed to find an alternative real soon! This chocolate & avocado truffle was my first attempt in creating a melt-in-your-mouth replica. It is super easy and you don’t need a lot of complicated ingredients. I found it online and amended it slightly according to how I found the cooking experience.

- Doesn't it look gorgeous?

– Doesn’t it look gorgeous?

I also made them just in time for Valentine’s Day! I took two of the biggest truffles and wrapped them beautifully for Sebastian – I just couldn’t wait till Friday so I surprised him with it yesterday. I was a bit nervous at what he was going to say, but he actually loved them! Non-vegan approval received!  Just a warning, if you are giving them as a gift, you need to instruct the lucky receiver to leave it in the fridge until they eat it as it WILL melt.  Another idea is to serve it up as dessert during your Valentine’s Day dinner – it goes deliciously with vegan ice cream or coconut whipped cream.

Hope you have as much fun making them as I did, and if you have any suggestions, kindly do share them in the comment section below!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 100 grams dark chocolate (If you can, use raw chocolate – the Superfoods range has an amazing one)
  • 1x small, ripe avocado
  • 1x teaspoon vanilla essence
  • Pinch of salt for taste
  • Coating: Raw cocoa power / desiccated coconut / 100’s & 100’s/ ground almonds
  • NOTE: You can also add brown sugar to make the truffles sweeter, but I as I am not a sweet tooth I didn’t
choc and avo truffles

– Super easy!

INSTRUCTIONS:

Prepping:

  1. Boil a kettle of water for melting the chocolate in a double boiler
  2. Blend the avocado into a smooth consistency. (If you do not have a food processor, you can mash the avocado with a fork)
  3. Prepare the coating ingredients into a rolling bowl
  4. Cut the wax paper to fit into the tray or plate

Cooking:

  1. Brake chocolate into smaller pieces and melt it in a double boiler over low heat
  2. Add the pinch of salt and vanilla essence
  3. Remove from the heat once the chocolate has melted and add smooth avocado as well as one tablespoon of cacao. (This is where you will add the brown sugar if you wanted to make your truffles sweeter)
  4. Mix the avocado through thoroughly until you have a smooth, thick, pudding-like consistency
  5. Transfer the bowl/pot of chocolate and avocado mixer into the freezer for about 30minutes (This is the time to lick off the spoon and then wash the dishes)
  6. After 30 minutes, check the consistency and if it is still too soft to handle, put it in the freezer for another 5 – 10 minutes
  7. When the chocolate and avocado mixture is the right consistency, scoop up a little bit of the stiffened chocolate with a teaspoon and roll it in your hands into a smooth ball
  8. Transfer the ball to the coating (cocoa power / desiccated coconut / 100’s & 100’s) and roll it until it is completely covered
  9. Place the covered ball onto the baking tray/plate (I would suggest to only roll 4 balls at a time as the chocolate melts very quickly. Put the four balls in the freezer to set, and put the chocolate mix back into the freezer if necessary. Wait 5 – 10 minutes and do another four balls. Continue until all the mixture is done)
  10. Keep the chocolate truffles in the fridge until serving time
  11. Serve the truffles in a beautifully decorated box or as dessert with coconut whipped cream / vegan ice cream

Have fun and ENJOY!

MEPLEASE remember to help a vegan out and vote for me for the Wellness Warehouse LiveLifeWell ompetition! It will only take you 5 mins and I would really appreciate it :) Just click on the VOTE button next to my name (Leozette Roode) here.