1. A Quare Pear Breakfast

    Also works as a snack, dessert, lunch… Probably not dog food. Salty, sweet, juicy, creamy, warming, cooling, crunchy, tart: Well this is all things to all men, basically.

    - per serving -

    1 pear, peeled and thinly sliced
    ~10 pistachios
    1 tsp sumac

    1 square 70-84% dark chocolate
    1 tbs hemp milk
    1 cardamom pod

    Put the chocolate, milk and cardamom in a cup and heat for about 20 seconds. Then stir until the chocolate melts amd the cardamom infuses a bit.

    Put it all together and enjoy the weird and oddly delicious combination.

    Mama Yoc’s Kitchen.

  2. Falafel Feast

    When I say a feast, I mean a feast. Have you ever heard of ‘Falafel Feast Face’? I have it right now. It ain’t pretty, but it’s definitely worth it. So join me there.

     Falafel: A tried and true relationship. This is natural enough given my long-term dependence on the chickpea. As a vegan in Ireland, falafel is a reliable old friend. When we were in Boston we spent many lunches in Harvard Square drinking tea and eating vibrant green falafel. Every music festival that I have gone to has been dominated by it. Trips away and rough nights out are shrouded in it. I used to go to Galway market all the time when I was hungover. There’s a falafel stand there that could restore life to four-day-old hair.

    And now, finally, I have combined the best falafels of my life and my reading into this falafel and this bowl of unrelenting joy. Everything here works together and makes me so, so happy.

    - per bowl -

    • 4 baked, oil free falafel from this recipe
    • A few tablespoons of zhoug from this recipe
    • Bastardised Arabic Salad from this recipe
    • A boiled beetroot, sliced
    • A few cherry tomatoes
    • 2 gherkins, sliced
    • 2-3 olives
    • Bowl of lamb’s lettuce (corn salad) and spinach
    • Couple of spoons of hummus (I make mine using chickpeas, tahini, lemon juice, water and hot sauce)
    • Couple of spoons of Tahini dressing from this recipe

    Put it all in a big ass bowl and feast like a king. Obviously, something for a big group or to eat over several days in different forms. There’s a bit of work to it, but it takes a surprisingly short amount of time provided you have all the ingredients good to go. I made this up for a group dinner thing and from start to finish it was about two hours work (the constant washing of dishes was the biggest hold-up!)

    Mama Yoc’s Kitchen

  3. Mexican Mess

    Because if there’s avocado, lime, coriander, rice, beans and hot sauce then you can add whatever the hell else you want in any combination whatsoever. No joke, I went to Cancun a few years ago on Spring Break. Over that week I subsisted off onion enchiladas and tequila. I had to go back to Boston and my beloved Mexican friends there to eat any real Mexican food. Then it was delicious. But as a result now I maintain I can call anything I please ‘Mexican food’. Ahem.

    - Serves 1 (hungry) person -

    1/2 avocado, sliced
    1/2 beetroot, sliced
    1 carrot, spiralised
    1/2 courgette, spiralised
    Big handfuls of Spinach and coriander, torn
    3 spears asparagus, grilled and in thirds
    Baby corn and mangetout steamed in lime juice and coriander
    Tomato, diced with lime juice, cumin, coriander and salt
    1/4 c. Butter beans
    1/4 c. Cooked rice, with tumeric and cumin
    A large spoon of hummus
    Lots and lots of hot sauce and lime juice

    Put it all in a big bowl amd enjoy it a great deal.

    Mama Yoc’s Kitchen.

  4. Falafel

    Oil-free, coeliac friendly, vegan

    This isn’t a short list of ingredients. But the recipe is pretty much perfect. I have dreamed of the Falafel that I used to eat somewhere off Harvard Square for five years. This is a long-time-coming mastering of that memory.

    My second favourite food and this is the definitive recipe: a mixture of Felicity Cloake, Yottam Ottolenghi and Angela Liddon. They’re baked, so as to allow for quadruple portions. (That’s how these things work, right?)

    I’ll post soon on the best way to serve them. They deserve a feast.

    - Makes 20-25 Falafel -

    1/2 400g cans each of chickpeas and butter (broad) beans, drained and rinsed

    1/2 red onion, finely diced
    3 scallions, thinly sliced
    3 cloves of garlic, minced
    1/4 tsp. each ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg
    1/2 tsp. each black pepper, salt
    1 tsp each cumin, ground coriander

    2/3 c. fresh coriander
    1/3 c. fresh parsley

    1/2 c. breadcrumbs (I used wholegrain spelt, use gluten free if needs be)
    1/3 c. mixed seeds (make sure sesame seeds are in there - I also used linseed, pumpkin amd sunflower)

    Preheat the oven to 400°F/200°C.

    Put all the spices, herbs, onions, garlic, butter beans and half the chickpeas in a food processor. Whiz until smooth. Add a couple of spoons of water if it isn’t pureeing. Add the rest of the chickpeas and pulse briefly. They should retain some texture. If the mixture is quite wet, fold in some breadcrumbs until balls form easily, though the mix should still be quite damp: like good mashed potatoes.

    Mix the breadcrumbs and seeds. Form 15ml (1 tbs) balls from the falafel mix and roll in the seed and crumb coating.

    Sit on baking paper and bake for 10-15 minutes, turning occasionally to get a nice golden colour all round.

    Mama Yoc’s Kitchen.

  5. Zhoug

    Arab condiment usually served on Falafel. It should be eye wateringly hot. Will truly cure absolutely anything that ails you. I’m surprised chemists don’t sell this, to be honest. Put it on EVERYTHING.

    1 c. packed fresh coriander
    1/2 c. packed fresh parsley
    1 clove garlic, minced
    2 hit green chillies, with seeds, finely chopped (the picture has a red one in it because I ran out)
    2 tbs olive oil
    2 tbs water
    1 tsp each cumin, ground coriander
    1/3 tsp each ground cloves, cardamom, maple syrup, salt

    Blend together in a pestle and mortar or whiz until coarsely blended. It keeps well in the fridge for at least a week.

    Mama Yoc’s Kitchen.

  6. Sumac, Dill and Lemon Salad

    From my Tangy Taturday. The beetroot provides all the sweetness that’s needed to set off what looks like a potentially face-puckering meal. For salads, and most vegetarian (all?) food, the preparation and state of the ingredients is so important for enjoyment of the meal. The beetroot must be very thinly sliced, almost translucent, and the lamb’s lettuce should be totally dry (Weeeee! Salad spinner!).

    -per serving-

    1/2 med. avocado, in 0.5cm slices
    1 med. beetroot, shaved/very thinly sliced
    Plateful of lamb’s lettuce (corn salad), washed and thoroughly dried. Throw out any sad bita.
    10-15 roasted and salted pistachios, shelled

    2 tsp olive oil
    2 tsp picked dill, chopped
    Juice and zest of half a lemon
    Pinch of salt

    2-3 tsp sumac

    Whisk the dressing together, or shake in a little jar. Leave to infuse for about 20 minutes as you prepare everything else. I layer all the ingredients fairly carefully as I don’t like beetroot discolouring everything. Add the dressing (make sure the dill is well dispersed) and shower (very) liberally with sumac.

    Mama Yoc’s Kitchen.

  7. Oh Lidl …

    I’ve been eating the cob loaves from the Lidl fresh bakery for months. Regular enough bread, I thought. It’ll be grand, I thought. Maybe they don’t egg-wash those savage looking pretzels, I thought. Sure I’ll just send them an email and I’m sure they’ll tell me I can eat a whole host of stuff from that enticing section, I thought. I was wrong. Wrong about it all. Bom-bom.

    The gluten-free bread they sell in the bakery section contains egg and is labelled as such. I thought I’d shoot them (Lidl Ireland customer service) an email and ask them to let me know what breads (and maybe even pastries, there could be another apple lattice situation lurking in there) don’t contain dairy or eggs. On a separate note I asked them what products contain honey (as I don’t particularly mind eating honey. Rebel-rebel.)

    I got this very prompt response this morning. I’m not a happy bunny. At first I thought: no, surely! They must be confused! But I broke down the ingredients that I meant so I don’t think any confusion was involved.

    Farewell Lidl bakery. You were so, so delicious.

    Expect a post in the near future where I try (and probably fail) to make pretzels as I’m now dreaming about them.


  8. Some sort of Arabic… something.

    Not quite Fattoush, not quite Arabic Salad. But a combination of their elements. With rice. And it’s only part salad. Whatever, it takes the best parts amd bastardises it all into something that is far, far superior.

    - per serving -

    2 plum tomatoes, diced
    2.5 inches cucumber, diced
    4 radishes, diced and thinly sliced
    10g (small handful) parsley, chopped
    1 spring onion, thinly sliced

    1/3 cup cooked basmati rice
    Large plate of baby spinach (shredded, if you’re bothered)

    2 tbs soy yogurt
    2 tbs almond milk
    Juice of a small lemon (1/2 a big lemon)
    Big pinch of salt

    Black pepper

    Mix the yogurt, milk, salt and lemon juice. Leave to curdle.

    Mix the rice and spinach. In the microwave, or in a pan, heat them together so the spinach is wilted.

    Combine the elements of the chopped salad and add the yogurt dressing. Serve atop the warm spinach-rice mix and liberally cover with black pepper.

    Mama Yoc’s Kitchen.

  9. Five Minute Miso Bowl

    So quick, so delicious. Now you have no excuse.

    - serves one -

    Set 2c. water to boil. Top and tail ten green beans and slice diagonally in thirds. Slice a small handful of broccoli into florets. Slice 80g (a thick slice) of firm silken tofu into small cubes. Dice a tomato. Add 2 tsp each of miso, garlic teriyaki and chilli flakes to the water. Add the veg, tofu and half a pack of udon noodles. Bring back to the boil and serve.

    Mama Yoc’s Kitchen.

  10. Miso Salad with Kale and Clementines

    This. Is. Delicious.

    - serves one -

    150g kale, stems removed and torn into smallish pieces
    1/2 a courgette, in noodles
    1 clementine
    1 handful butter beans
    10 almonds

    1 tbs tahini
    2 tbs white wine vinegar
    1/2 tbs minced garlic
    1/2 tbs minced ginger
    1 tbs hit water
    1/2 tsp maple syrup

    Whisk the dressing ingredients together. Massage into the kale. If possible, leave for a few hours, mixing back in the dressing occasionally.

    Mix in the other ingredients before serving.

    Mama Yoc’s Kitchen.