Friday, 12 September 2014

Independence Biscuits

Vegan MoFo 2014 is finally here, and my theme for this year is Vegan Scotland: veganising Scottish recipes and suggestions for eating out and socialising in Scotland.

I haven't posted for a few days because I've been a little overstretched with trying to keep up with my work, take the cats to the vet for their annual check up, attend a very interesting and useful discussion to learn about non-binary gender identity and, of course, keep up with the latest developments on Scotland's upcoming independence referendum. Between all of that, I've let my Vegan MoFo blogging fall a little by the wayside, but I'm back today for a quick post.

In the fine tradition of intersectional vegan baketivism, I decided to make some traditional Scottish shortbread biscuits with messages supporting the Yes campaign, and particularly promoting the Green Yes. Directly below is the recipe, and underneath that I've decided to explain why I'll be voting yes in the referendum on 18 September.



Monday, 8 September 2014

Oatcakes

Vegan MoFo 2014 is finally here, and my theme for this year is Vegan Scotland: veganising Scottish recipes and suggestions for eating out and socialising in Scotland.

Oatcake topped with Vegusto No-Moo Walnut vegan cheese and homemade marrow and ginger chutney.

Oatcakes are a very delicious traditional Scottish food, and one that I love to make! Whilst there are plenty of vegan oatcakes available to buy in the shops here in the UK, nothing quite compares to the taste of a homemade oatcake. They’re really simple and quick to make in an oven, and they last for a while in a sealed container. They’re also very versatile, and taste delicious topped with vegan cheese and chutney, nut butters or even just dipped into soup.

Saturday, 6 September 2014

Vegan cooked breakfast with tattie scones

Vegan MoFo 2014 is finally here, and my theme for this year is Vegan Scotland: veganising Scottish recipes and suggestions for eating out and socialising in Scotland.


Vegan cooked breakfast with smokey tempeh bacon, tofu scramble, toast, beans and tattie scones. I thought about adding some fried mushrooms and tomatoes but realised I would need a bigger plate and/or stomach!

Whilst breakfast for me is usually a light meal of porridge, cereal or fruit, I have always loved a great big cooked breakfast every now and again, and that hasn't changed since I went vegan a few years ago. Indeed, one of my favourite things about the weekend is being able to enjoy one at home or out and about if I can.

In the spirit of my theme for Vegan MoFo 2014, I decided to make myself a nice big plate of Scottish cooked breakfast today, which you can see in the photo above. The recipes for the tofu scramble and tempeh bacon both came from one of my favourite and most-used recipe books, Vegan With A Vengeance by Isa Chandra Moskowitz, and you can also find the recipe for the tofu scramble on her website here.

Here in Scotland, a cooked breakfast simply wouldn't be the same without tattie scones on the side, delicious fried potato goodness which, in my opinion, are far superior to the traditional English hash brown. Delicious, cheap and super easy to make, they're a great addition to your breakfast. Plus, if you have any left over, you can keep them in the fridge to either eat cold or reheat quickly in a frying pan the next day.

Friday, 5 September 2014

Mince and Tatties

Vegan MoFo 2014 is finally here, and my theme for this year is Vegan Scotland: veganising Scottish recipes and suggestions for eating out and socialising in Scotland.

Mince and tatties is a hearty Scottish dish which is fairly straightforward to make and is very tasty and filling! It’s one of my favourite meals on an autumn or winter night.Unfortunately, it's also one of the least beautiful foods in the world to try and photograph, so I hope you will accept that my photo simply doesn't do the tastiness of it justice!

For this recipe, instead of TVP, you could use 600g of store-bought vegan mince in this recipe if you prefer, which doesn’t need to be rehydrated. I’ve also had excellent versions made with cooked green or brown lentils. One of my neighbours also swears by adding a splash of red wine to the mince for flavour, and his vegan mince and tatties are very, very good.

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Scotch Broth with Braised Tofu

Vegan MoFo 2014 is finally here, and my theme for this year is Vegan Scotland: veganising Scottish recipes and suggestions for eating out and socialising in Scotland.


Scotch broth is a hearty, delicious and traditional Scottish dish, perfect for an autumn or winter evening when you need to get some warmth into you! My veganised version uses braised tofu to add a bit of texture and chewiness to it, but you could use other ingredients such as chunks of pressed firm tofu or store-bought vegan meats in its place, or even leave it out entirely if you prefer! Many recipes also add in a couple of sticks of chopped celery at the beginning, but as I’m not a huge celery fan I tend to leave them out.

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Local vegan and animal rights groups and organisations in Scotland

Vegan MoFo 2014 is finally here, and my theme for this year is Vegan Scotland: veganising Scottish recipes and suggestions for eating out and socialising in Scotland.

First of all, I wanted to mention that today, 2 September, is the birthday of Donald Watson, one of the early pioneers of the vegan movement and founders of the Vegan Society in 1944. He was born in 1910 and lived a very interesting life, including registering as a conscientious objector in World War II and being part of the group which coined the term 'vegan' in the 1940s. If you want to learn more about him (and you should!), you can find out more on the Vegan Society website, his BBC obituary or on Wikipedia.

In line with Donald Watson's life ambition of starting a movement which aimed to end the exploitation of non-human animals, this post is a list of some suggestions for local groups and organisations based in Scotland which promote animal rights and/or veganism that you might like to get involved with, whether you're interested in learning more about the issues, getting involved with campaigning or just socialising with like-minded people.

Monday, 1 September 2014

Porridge

Vegan MoFo 2014 is finally here, and my theme for this year is Vegan Scotland: veganising Scottish recipes and suggestions for eating out and socialising in Scotland.

I thought I'd start off with a nice simple couple of recipes for that traditional Scottish breakfast staple: porridge. It's a simple, tasty and healthy way to start the day, and there are so many different ways to enjoy it! Toppings I particularly enjoy in varying combinations include jam, maple syrup, agave syrup, a splash of plant milk, nuts, seeds, raisins, sultanas, sliced bananas, nut butters (cashew butter being my personal favourite) and even chocolate chips for a sweet treat.

I've included two recipes below, one using porridge oats and one made with oatmeal. Porridge oats tend to make a stodgier porridge which I personally prefer, while oatmeal has a smoother consistency. Traditionally, Scottish porridge is also made with a stirrer known as a spurtle, although this isn't compulsory!

The most important thing to remember about making porridge, however, whichever kind of oats you use, is to soak the pan immediately as soon as you've served the porridge from it! If you've ever had the misfortune to have to try and clean a porridge pan which has been sitting out you'll know what I mean.


Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Coming to a blog near you: Vegan MoFo 2014!



 It's that time of year once again! The Vegan Month of Food Writing (Vegan MoFo to you and me) is returning in September 2014, and I will be taking part for the second year in a row.

In 2013 I took part for the first time and didn't really have a set theme, although I covered topics such as eating vegan in Brazil, couchsurfing as a vegan, the badger cull, vegan barbeques, vegans in prison and even a recipe or two. I managed twenty posts in total, and you can read them all here.

This year I've picked a theme to try and run with for my posts, and that is:Vegan Scotland! I'll be posting about veganising Scottish food, vegan food in Scotland (including a vegan haggis showdown) as well as suggestions for places to go to eat out and socialise as a vegan in Scotland.

Are you taking part in Vegan MoFo this year? If so, let me know your blog link (and theme if you have one) in the comments below.

Friday, 8 August 2014

Shows I think you should see at the Edinburgh Fringe 2014

The Edinburgh Festival Fringe happens every year in August, and it's an excellent opportunity to see a range of different performances, including theatre, music, circus, comedy and spoken word. Depending on your budget, there are plenty of paying ticketed performances but also many free ticketed and non-ticketed shows too (usually with a collection at the end where you are encouraged to give a donation based on your budget and how much you enjoyed it). There are so many things on every year that it can be really difficult to decide what to go and see, so these are some of the shows and performers that I've seen and think are worth watching.


Sunday, 3 August 2014

A trip to Oslo, part three

Note: As with all my blog posts, you can click on any of the photos below to enlarge them.

This is part three of my series about my recent trip to Oslo in Norway. To see what I got up to in Oslo before this post, see parts one and two.

Following my coffee and pie, I took a short walk down to the Cultural History Museum. An interesting museum with displays of Viking hoards, cultural artifacts from people living in the Arctic circle and other objects from around the world, the highlight for me was the For the Love of Freedom exhibition taking place, and particularly the section looking at gay history in Norway and the history of Pride.