16

More Visits To Raw Trader, City

Raw Trader Melbourne

Since my first blog post about Raw Trader in the city (Melbourne’s CBD) I’ve been back a few times on my own and with company. I follow Raw Trader on Instagram and sit there drooling every morning when they post a photo of what’s in the cabinet, though I get bummed out when I see the stuff I really want to try on days when I’m not in the city! Still, there’s plenty more to keep me happy.

As the name suggests, everything at Raw Trader is raw as well as organic, vegan, paleo, gluten free, dairy free and sugar free. I love the creativity and seeing what they come up with next.

Here’s a look at what I (and company) have had over the past year. The $15 tasting platters are great when you want to try some of everything. The banoffee slice (far left) is one of the more popular treats. I really like the peppermint slice (second from left) and the caramel slice (far right):

Raw Trader Melbourne

This apple crumble cake is so good. What I really like about Raw Trader is that nothing, to me, is sickly sweet:

Raw Trader Melbourne

Lemon layer cake! Arthur and I shared this and I was happy to learn Raw Trader don’t use agave, as Arthur (we suspect) is allergic:

Raw Trader Melbourne

The cappuccino cake may be my favourite. The texture of these cakes are so beautifully smooth:

Raw Trader Melbourne

No, maybe this white chocolate salted caramel cake is my favourite… (hello raw mint slice biscuit!):

Raw Trader Melbourne

Everything is hand made there at Raw Trader, including their nut milks. You can also order tea, coffee, hot chocolate, juices and smoothies. There are breakfast options, chocolate bark, bliss balls and raw versions of biscuits.

Raw Trader Melbourne

I always look forward to seeing what Raw Trader have in the cabinet, even if I can’t be there in person. I’ve been told that there are some items like custard tarts that fly out the door so I’m hoping to get lucky one day and finally grab one. Until then, I’m content with eating my way through whatever’s on offer 😉

Raw Trader Melbourne

Raw Trader

10 Sutherland Street, Melbourne

http://rawtrader.com.au/

Raw Trader on Facebook

Raw Trader on Instagram

Click to add a blog post for Raw Trader on Zomato

Raw Trader Melbourne

8

Lentil As Anything, Preston

Preston Lentil As Anything

Lentil As Anything in Preston have recently re-opened and are now Melbourne’s first fully vegan Thali bar, serving up Southern Indian meals. If you’re not familiar with how LAA operates, they’re a non-profit community organisation and you pay-as-you-feel. You can also find other LAAs in Footscray, Abbotsford, St. Kilda, Thornbury and Sydney.

Preston Lentil As Anything

It may look a little small when you walk in, but it’s light and comfortable. More seating is out the back. In the front room, where you enter from the street, there’s an art exhibition space where artists can display their work without having to pay big hire fees or commissions. There was some great work displayed (check out the astronaut below, that was my favourite):

Preston Lentil As Anything

There’s the Upstairs community Co-Op space where events like yoga, swap meets, markets, exhibitions and skills shares are held. The outdoor eating area at Preston LAA is all undercover and it’s a pleasant place to sit with a little veggie and herb garden:

Preston Lentil As Anything

Food! I’m not sure if it’s thali time all time, or just when I went on the Saturday. This was a tasty selection of dishes, with rice underneath. Arthur stole half the curry pastry, argh:

Preston Lentil As Anything

When you eat at LAA, your contibution (i.e. what you choose to pay) helps support a whole number of community initiatives. From the LAA website, their mission is

Caring for people: Provide a wholesome and nutritious meal where money is not a concern.
Promoting Multiculturalism: Fostering an environment of inclusion and not exclusion.
Reforming Society: Acting on the structures of society to restore justice.
Extending/Spreading it’s ethos and values: Hiring volunteers, the long-term unemployed and the marginalised.
Encouraging: Young people to be active citizens and get involved in community based initiatives

All great reasons to give it a go!

Lentil As Anything Preston

288 High Street, Preston

http://lentilasanything.com/preston/
Click to add a blog post for Lentil As Anything on Zomato

 

Preston Lentil As Anything

10

What I Ate and Week In Review

Mexican style bean and veg stew

Here’s a look at some of the eats the family and I have had recently. Above is a Mexican style stew with black beans and whatever veggies I had to use up. On the top is a cashew lime avocado cream.

We had a special visit to Mr Nice Guy’s Bake Shop. I haven’t blogged about the bake shop in a long time because we haven’t visited. Mr Nice Guy is now making these amazing brioche donuts, or bronuts.

Mr Nice Guys Bake Shop bronut  Mr Nice Guys Bake Shop bronut

A few weeks ago I made a low fat banana and date bread:

banana date ginger bread

Arthur likes the Gardein chick’n sliders:

Gardein slider

But it’s not all bronuts and burgers around here. There’s a lot of green juice:

green juice

We’ve been pretty busy lately and I haven’t been taking many photos of stuff we’ve been up to but here are a few. We went to Melbourne Uni for Open Day today:

Melbourne University

Here’s the Essendon Historical Society in the old court house that was built in 1890 and operated as a court house until 1974:

essendon historical society

Buildings around the corner from Mister Nice Guy’s in Ascot Vale:

Ascot Vale terrace building facades

My sister is so lucky to have neighbours like these:
kangaroo

Husband and the kids went on a tour at the National Gallery of Victoria. DeeW came home and told me about a famous painter who painted a crying lady because there was a war in a shopping centre. Turns out she was referring to Picasso and the marketplace bombing of Guernica in 1937. Arthur was particularly interested in the story of The Weeping Woman being stolen from the gallery in 1986. We both found the ransom note funny…

WeepingWoman

More eats and Melbourney photo-y stuff coming at you next week!

20

Melomakarona Inspired Scones For International Scone Week

Melomakarona Inspired Scones by Veganopoulous

It’s International Scone Week! Well, we’re at the end of it and so I’ve just been able to sneak in this submission with a day to go. This year’s International Scone Week is being hosted by Tandy from Lavender and Lime. Tandy has listed the participants in the sidebar of her blog, so you can check out their scone recipes which are easily veganisable.

I haven’t made scones in ages and wanted to do something different… but what? Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about my vegan melomakarona (Greek honey walnut cakes, though being vegan I don’t use honey). I’ve made melomakarona inspired smoothie bowls and nicecream, so why not scones?

Melomakarona Inspired Scones by Veganopoulous

Now what usually happens when I have a brainwave is this. I act on the brainwave then later on realise there was a big brainfart moment somewhere in the process. Today’s brainfart was leaving out the baking powder, you know, often a really important ingredient. I didn’t have self raising flour and meant to add some baking powder. And I only realised it when eating the scones and they still turned out fine, though I rolled the dough out so it was 3cm high to begin with. Phew, I think that saved me. Aaanyway, I’ve added optional baking powder to the recipe, or you can use self raising flour to begin with.

Being based on melomakarona, the flavours are orange, lemon and cinnamon. I wanted to add walnuts but DeeW hates anything with nuts and would have picked them out so I made a sweet walnut filling first by roasting walnuts, letting them cool completely, whizzing them up in the food processor then adding a little rice malt syrup. You can use golden syrup or agave, whatever you like to create a filling to your preferred level of sweetness.

These took longer to cook than scones usually take. All up I had them in the oven for half an hour and the bottoms were quite brown but gahhh the tops didn’t brown so they don’t look as pretty as regular white flour scones.

With the wholemeal flour, they did go a little ‘heavy’ once they cooled but the kids loved them, which works for me! I’ll have to play with this recipe again before adding it as an official recipe to my site, though I am mostly happy with how these turned out today.

Melomakarona Inspired Scones by Veganopoulous

Melomakarona Inspired Scones by Veganopoulous

Scones:

* 1.5 cups plain flour (or self raising flour)

* 1.5 cups wholemeal flour

* 3/4 cup chilled vegan butter

* 1Tbs baking powder (I know, it’s 2tsp per cup of plain flour but I’m cautious!) Omit if using self raising flour

* 1Tbs caster sugar

* 1.5 tsp cinnamon

* 1tsp fine salt

* 1/2 cup toasted and chopped walnuts (optional)

* 1.25 cups non-dairy milk and a little extra for the glazing

* 1 medium sized orange, zested and juiced

* 1 medium lemon, zested and juiced

 

Walnut Filling:

* 1 cup walnuts, toasted then completely cooled before being very finely chopped in a food processor

* rice malt syrup to your preferred level of sweetness

* pinch of cinnamon

Mix the filling ingredients and set aside (and use it on other stuff too!)

 

Method:

* Sift the flours, baking powder if using, cinnamon and caster sugar. Add the vegan butter in chunks and rub with your fingers until the mixture is breadcrumby. Alternatively, do what I do and use the food processor for this flour+butter step!

* If using a food processor, remove the dry ingredients to a large bowl. Add in the optional chopped walnuts and zest and stir to combine well.

* Make a well and pour in the milk, orange juice and lemon juice. Gently mix to combine it all before turning out on to a floured surface. Knead gently and briefly, just until you get a smooth dough.

* Make a disc about 3cm high and use your favourite scone cutting tool to cut out your scones. Place the scones on a tray (or a greased and floured tray– whatever you usually do!) with about a 1cm or 2cm gap between scones.

* Brush the scones with the extra bit of milk and put a walnut half in the centre.

* Bake until the scones are browned, or sound hollow when you tap them on the bottom. My oven took about thirty minutes which seemed awfully long for scones so please set your timer for 12 minutes and keep on checking every few minutes after that. Even so my scones didn’t go nice and brown, I hope yours turn out better looking!

10

Aquafabulous Pecan Tahini Sweet Potato Banana Bread

Aquafabulous Pecan Tahini Sweet Potato Banana Bread by Veganopoulous

This banana bread (with a whopper of a title…sorry) was a bit of an experiment– in other words, I had stuff I needed to use up like aquafaba (the liquid from canned chickpeas), bananas, wholemeal flour and a sweet potato I’d roasted a few days ago. Whenever I have bananas getting overripe, I always go for a banana bread but this time I wanted to just throw stuff in to a bowl and see how it worked out, without following a recipe. Maybe with a touch more fancy in it. Fortunately it didn’t end up being a recipe for disaster and instead I ended up with a banana bread that is really pretty ace.

I did plan on making it with wholemeal spelt flour but urgh, had none in the cupboard. That’s when I spotted some wholemeal flour next to the plain flour. I don’t cook much with wholemeal flour but if I do, it’s usually mixed with another lighter flour. Because I only had plain flour (all purpose) I went with that. In the future I’ll try this with gluten free flours like buckwheat, maybe some millet though my previous gluten free banana bread attempts have been a bit forgettable.

If you’re a lazy cook like me, you might like the use of the blender. Mashing banana by hand always leaves me with a layer of banana at the bottom of a cake no matter how much I mash. Problem solved with the blender!

The inclusion of the roasted sweet potato probably isn’t that necessary (it can be boiled or steamed), or you can add in extra banana instead of the sweet potato. Do roast the pecans beforehand though, it adds a lovely flavour and lets you tick a fancy-cake checkbox.

My tahini is one with a lot of oil on the top, so if you have a drier tahini you may want to consider adding a little oil of your choice if you think the bread will be too dry. I like to avoid adding oil where possible so if I had to use a drier tahini, I probably wouldn’t add any oil but that’s all down to personal preference!

You can play around with the recipe– want a stronger tahini flavour? Add more! Use walnuts instead of pecans. Take half the batter and mix some raw cacao through it to make a chocolate batter, then make a marbled loaf. Add chunks of store bought halva (that’s what I’m doing next). Make a marbled loaf with chunks of halva. Etc etc etc!

Check out the official Aquafaba website, or head over to the Vegan Meringue Hits and Misses Facebook group where people continue to come up with all kinds of amazing stuff. Do that while you’re eating a piece of this bread that’s thickly coated with tahini!

Aquafabulous Pecan Tahini Sweet Potato Banana Bread by Veganopoulous

 

 

 

Aquafabulous Pecan Tahini Sweet Potato Banana Bread
Print Recipe
A vegan banana bread using aquafaba that's taken up a notch with the addition of tahini, roast pecans and roast sweet potato. I've listed 10 slices as the serving size but of course that's up to you ;)
Servings Prep Time
10 slices 15 minutes
Cook Time
60 minutes
Servings Prep Time
10 slices 15 minutes
Cook Time
60 minutes
Aquafabulous Pecan Tahini Sweet Potato Banana Bread
Print Recipe
A vegan banana bread using aquafaba that's taken up a notch with the addition of tahini, roast pecans and roast sweet potato. I've listed 10 slices as the serving size but of course that's up to you ;)
Servings Prep Time
10 slices 15 minutes
Cook Time
60 minutes
Servings Prep Time
10 slices 15 minutes
Cook Time
60 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: slices
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 180C (moderate oven temperature).
  2. In a bowl, sift together the plain flour, wholemeal flour, baking powder, baking soda, ground cinnamon and salt. Add in the pecans and stir to combine.
  3. In a blender, whiz up the non-dairy milk, unbeaten aquafaba, tahini, bananas, sweet potato and raw sugar. Whiz until the liquid is smooth and free of lumps.
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and give it a good stir but don't overmix.
  5. Pour the batter in to a loaf pan. Mine is a silicon loaf pan that measures 22cm x 12cm (8.5" x 4.75") on the bottom. There was a lot of batter and the loaf pan spread out a bit. If you're using a metal tin, you may want to line the sides with sticking-up baking paper just in case.
  6. Cook in a moderate oven (about 180C) and check at the 45 minute mark, then keep checking. All up mine took about one hour to bake until a skewer came out crumb-free (it had a little moisture which was fine). Leave the bread to cool a while on a cooling rack before slicing.
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