Easy Vegan Banana Loaf

If you are new to cooking and on a tight budget (who isn’t?) then Jack Monroe’s book ‘A Girl Called Jack’ is THE recipe book!

I’ve always thought that good food recipes had to be complicated, with loads and loads of ingredients and utensils/equipment that only the experts would have.

That was until I found Jack’s book!

It’s not a Vegan book by any means, but it does have recipes that are vegan and the one’s with meat you can substitute to make it vegan.

One of my favorite recipes is this beautifully easy Banana Loaf recipe, it’s only got a few ingredients (which I like ALOT) and it’s blinkin tasty!

AND I can guarantee it will come out like this!


So you fancy making it for yourself?

Here you go then – you won’t regret it!

What you’ll need: 

3 large bananas (over-ripe is the best!)
75 g oil (I used sunflower)
50 g sugar
225 g self-raising flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

What you’ll need to do:

Preheat oven to 180°C, and lightly grease a loaf tin.

Next peel your banana’s and mash them in a bowl. I kept mine a little lumpy just cos I could!  Next add the oil and sugar to the banana’s and stir.  Next add the flour, baking powder and cinnamon and stir well.

Once that’s done pour it all into the loaf tin and bake for approximately 30-45 minutes (depending if you have a fan over or not – mine is, so it cooks a lot quicker).  Just make sure you cover if the top starts to darken too much, before the inside had been cooked – do the usual test by putting in a knife to test if it’s come out clean or not.

Once done, leave it to cool for 5 mins and then pop it onto a cooling rack to cool down completely (not before you sneak a little bit, cos if your’e like me you can’t wait to try it!)

Keep it in a cool dry place, covered and it’ll last a week! (If you don’t gobble it all down before then that is!)

Note: This beautiful loaf will be available to buy as soon as my online bakery is open (hopefully early August) – check out my Facebook Page here for updates 🙂



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Beautiful Spicy-ish Bok Choy Mushroom & Tomato Stir-fry

These day’s, since becoming a Vegan, I hardly go a day without making something new from the food I intercept or save before it’s about to get binned!

Personally I think becoming vegan has given me a whole lease of life when it comes to cooking because you can’t just grab any old thing from the freezer or cupboards.  It has to be well thought out beforehand!   To be fair, I find it a bit hard, especially when my staple diet used to be jacket potato’s with cheese, cheese on toast, cheesy pasta or a pizza!

Can you see the re-occurring theme here?

I loved cheese.  Yet since deciding that my diet shouldn’t include harming any other living thing, cheese is now not so important and no longer figures in my cooking repertoire anymore!

Instead i get to sample the delights of new foods such as the wonderfully tasty and nutritious Bok Choy! (collected just today in fact!)

I’ll not bore you with it’s beauty other than the fact it’s highly ranked as one of the best vegetables to eat, it’s got 21 good nutrients and rich in Omega 3, zinc and so much more. Oh and the fact that it’s absolutely to die for and so is this stir-fry!

Don’t believe me? Well, try it for yourself and see!


What you’ll need:

1 tablespoon extra light olive oil
1 teaspoon sesame oil
2 medium bok choy
2 tomatoes
5 mushrooms
2 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon of chilli flakes (or a good old shake!)
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 tablespoon white cooking wine

What you’ll need to do:

Firstly chop the bok choy into thin, small slices. Chop the tomato into quarters. Slice the mushrooms in even, thin pieces. Peel the garlic and dice it in small pieces.

Now place all the chopped vegetables in the frying pan with the extra light olive oil, sesame oil and salt. Turning the heat to high-medium high. Once heated add the soy sauce, onion powder, garlic powder and paprika. Stir and cook the vegetables 6-8 minutes.

After the vegetables have been cooking for 6-8 minutes dd the cooking wine, stir and cook for another 2 minutes and turn the heat off.

Serve in a bowl and consume to your hearts desire!

Yum yum!



p.s thanks to Devine Healthy Food for this lovely recipe 🙂

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Apricot & Almond Cake – Who says you need eggs to bake a cake?


Now that I’m a fully fledged vegan I wanted to get back into baking some good delicious cakes.   I’m a real sucker for a sponge cake, and although egg’s do tend to make a cake light and fluffy this cake recipe is gonna knock that right out of the ball park in one sitting!

It’s a really moist yet light cake, with just the right amount of dried apricots, almonds and sugar – not too much and definitely not too little.  When people ask me what do I eat, as a Vegan. I can’t help but chuckle – “just what you eat, just without dairy and meat” – and it’s true!

It’s all about experimenting.  That’s the joy of all this, it gets you thinking right out of the box and really getting to know what you put into your body.

So enjoy this one folks, you won’t be disappointed!

Apricot & Almond Cake

You’ll need a 9″ inch cake tin, nicely greased (with soya marge or such like) or lining paper.


  • 10 oz plain flour
  • 4 oz sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 5 oz soft dried apricots (chopped)
  • 3 oz ground almonds
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 oz soya margarine
  • 2 tbs golden syrup
  • 150 ml soya milk

    Topped with flaked almonds to really drive the almond flavor home!

    Firstly, preheat your oven to 190 degrees.  Then combine the first 6 ingredients together in a fairly good sized bowl.  The melt your margarine, golden syrup and vanilla extra in a separate pan.  Mix the margarine liquid in with the main ingredients and make sure they are all combined.  Spoon the mixture into your pan and pop into the oven for about 30 minutes (I have a fan assisted oven so it normally takes this time, but if you need longer make sure you keep an eye on it. If your cake is browning on top quicker than cooking inside, cover with foil to ensure it cooks evenly).

And voila your cake is done!  Honestly, its absolutely gorgeous. I had a piece a few minutes later, just couldn’t resist – but it’s even nicer the next time – well that’s how long it lasted anyway!!

Paula x

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Tomato Rice (without the furry bits)

Do you have slightly furry Tomato’s back of the fridge?

I normally do.  I don’t know what it is about them, but I just can’t seem to use them up.  I can eat and use chopped tomato’s till they are coming out of my ears but those very ripe, juicy tomato’s, well that’s something a little bit harder to cope with.

Well, that’s a thing of the past.  Since deciding to finally go vegan, and the fact that our ‘waste food’ collections from our local Fruit Basket always (well nearly always) we has the odd tomato or two lolloping about.  And if you know anything about what I do at The Real Junk Food Project Portsmouth, cutting off the odd furry bit on a Tomato isn’t something to be afraid of!  So there I was, slicing off the furry bits, I finally decided it was time to find something good and proper to use them in.  As with most of the food I cook, I like it simple, quick, cheap (well it’s waste so it’s gonna be cheap!) and easy.

Being a new vegan, I am finding rice a great thing to utilize with most of my cooking – plus it’s a good , quick, easy and filling ingredient!    This dish is a Tomato Rice recipe, I’ve tried it a couple of times and both time’s I’ve polished both portions down in the same night!   With a few simple ingredients that you’ll no doubt have in your pantry (or cupboards as I don’t think many people have pantry’s anymore!) you’ll crave this one again and again.

So here it is!

Tomato Rice (after the furry bits have been cut off!)

Make’s enough for two portions:

1 Tablespoon of Oil
2 Pinches of Salt
Cooked Rice ( 4 handfuls of the stuff)
Tomato’s (about 4/5)
1 Pepper (if you have one)
1 Onion
1 Shake of Ground Ginger
2 Cloves of Garlic
Bunch of Coriander Leaves (fresh) or 2 shakes of Dried Coriander
1 and a half Shakes of Turmeric
1 Shake of Chili Powder
1 Shake of Cinnamon

In a hot pan add the oil. Add the cinnamon and then the onion. Let them all come together so the flavors bind together to give a good intoxicating flavor, allow it all to fry.

Now add the gorgeous tomato’s (cutting them up in quarters) and allow them to fry really well.  Add the turmeric and salt.  Now add the chili powder, add as much as you wish (don’t always listen to me) as you know best how hot or spicy you like it!

Now that’s all added, fry it all up together until it all becomes a mushy consistency – it will take 5-10 minutes depending how firm your tomato’s are.   Once they start to look like a chutney, or thereabouts, add the handful of coriander leaves, or 2 shakes of dried coriander.   Mix it all up and once it’s all mashed up together (looking a bit like an orange mash potato) then add the cooked rice (about 4 handfuls of the stuff) turn off the heat and mix it all together.

Once it’s all mixed together and heated through serve with a garnish or two of the coriander.  Or failing that it’s even better served the next day.  You can eat it cold for lunch, or keep it in the fridge overnight and re-heat in the microwave (remembering to ensure you heat it as hot as you can).

I normally serve it with a nice bit of soya buttered bread (Soya and Linseed is my favorite if I can get my hands on it!)

Let me know what you think!


P x

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