seitan is my motor



November 2014



Roasting Vegetables for Vegan Wednesday

pumpkin soup with roasted beets

It’s another vegan wednesday. If you want to participate, post the link to your post in the comment section of this blog entry.


There are three things that make autumn awesome: an oven, winter vegetables, and spices. Roasting sturdy vegetables like cauliflower or beets is one of my favourite leisure activities right now. You won’t have to watch roasted vegetables as closely as those which are fried and you will get much more flavour from roasted vegetables than from cooked ones.

We recently visited P’s family and his aunt gave me some of her spice supplies, which she buys in bulk when she visits her family in India and Nepal. Most of them are apparently meant to be for meaty dishes and I feel kind of bad for displaying them on a vegan blog, but they are great for seasoning roasted vegetables, too. Like garam masala or curry powder they are all spice blends. As you can see in the little picture in the right corner of the following foto the meat masala has a special note printed on the side that says “no curry powder”. I thought that was funny, maybe it’s just there to tell tourists what’s what. It still tastes similar to a hot curry powder and also has the same yellowish colour. I used it to season the pumpkin soup pictured above. The pindi channa masala is great for all kinds of chickpea dishes, especially this one (which also explains what the word pindi stands for). This time I used it to season my beet chips.

The tandoori chicken masala is a hot masala that I love to sprinkle on roasted cauliflower. I usually mix a tablespoon or two of olive oil with a teaspoon of this spice and half a teaspoon of salt. I roast the vegetables at 200°C (400°F) for 20 minutes. This goes great with chili, which is such a great autumn and winter dish anyway. I think I made lots lately. Usually I make it from scratch and often use different beans, add some pumpkin, sweet potato, or TVP. I thought I had a recipe on my blog but it turns out that I don’t. I start by frying an onion and some cloves of garlic, then I add a teaspoon of whole cumin seeds and toast them. I put a can of diced tomatoes into the pot along with cubed pumpkin pieces or soaked TVP. I think this recipe is a good place to start from, I usually use roasted pumpkin instead of the purée and vegetable broth instead of the beer. Since chili powder in most parts of Europe is something completely different than the US version, I use Hungarian paprika and some oregano instead.

chili with cauliflower |

tvp and bean chili |

I have been working on some new recipes because I am planning to do my first baking zine/ebook and I am very exited about this! I hope I can finish it by the end of November so that those who are interested can pick up some new holiday baking ideas from this little book. It’s going to have cookie recipes, yeast baked goods, but also some bars and maybe a cake or two. But I am still open to suggestions. This is the prototype for some speculoos nutella bars.

Happy (vegan) Wednesday!

speculoos nutella bars |



November 2014



Cranberry Butterscotch Flapjacks

cranberry butterscotch flapjacks |

Flapjacks were the first cookie bars I actually made years ago when I had no clue about baking. I really love that you almost cannot mess them up. (I used to mess up a lot of baked goods.) Usually they are simple and consist of only a few ingredients. They are my stand-by cookies when I am out of flour for example, or need a snack that keeps well and is easy to transport. To make them a bit fancier, I used a butterscotch flavoured syrup that I got at my favourite shop here in Dresden. It consists of invert sugar syrup and flavourings, so it works like regular corn syrup or golden syrup, which is often used in bars like these. The syrup improves both the texture and colour, it makes them all shiny and chestnut-coloured. And of course it adds this amazing buttery toffee syrup. I added cranberries and almonds but I think this recipe is quite adaptable. For example you could use butterscotch chips instead of the cranberries. Of course you can use raisins instead of the cranberries and you could leave out the almonds as well for a simpler and cheaper version.

Note: I used this brand of butterscotch syrup but there are other brands, too. A German equivalent would be this kind of syrup. If you don’t have access to butterscotch syrup at all, you can use agave nectar, rice syrup or corn syrup instead. This will change the flavour but should not affect the texture. Please keep in mind that the baking time might be shorter when using agave syrup.


Cranberry Butterscotch Flapjacks (makes 16 bars)

150 g (3/4 cup) sugar
80 g (6 tablespoons) soft refined coconut oil
200 g (2 cups) rolled oats
125 g (1 cup) cranberries
100 g (1 cup) slivered almonds
4 tablespoons butterscotch syrup
1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F) and line a rectangular pan (28 x 18 cm or 11 x 7 inch) with parchment paper. Beat sugar and oil until creamy. Add remaining ingredients and knead with your hands until everything is mixed well. Press into the pan and bake for 23 minutes. Let cool completely before slicing and serving.

cranberry butterscotch flapjacks |

Eat more cake.