Crazybadman X Morethanveggies: 3 recipes of high-protein breakfast spreads

Third post of my collaboration with Crazybadman! I’m using their BioTechUSA Vegan Protein to create high-protein breakfast recipes. It’s the best-tasting protein powder I’ve tried so I could make different recipes from it. If you’re a vegan athlete or simply into plant-based fitness, try them out! Use code MORETHANVEGGIES for 10% when you’re purchasing the protein powder from Crazybadman.

Here are 3 easy breakfast spreads that you can put on anything to give your meal a quick protein boost.


Chocolate breakfast spread

Dairy, gluten, oil and sugar-free chocolate spread that takes just about 15 minutes to make. Perfect on toast, oatmeal and crackers. Or simply eat with a spoon!

Makes about 300 g

Macros (1 serving of 1 tbsp):

  • 5.4 g protein
  • 2 g carbohydrates
  • 2.6 g fats
  • 0.4 g fibre

INGREDIENTS

  • 3/4 cup coconut milk
  • 4 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 30g unsweetened dark chocolate
  • 1/2 cup BioTechUSA Vegan Protein Hazelnut flavour
  • 1 tsp vanilla paste (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Place coconut milk and dark chocolate in a metal bowl and immerse it in hot water. Stir to melt the chocolate.
  2. Place chocolate mixture and remaining ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend for 1-2 mins until everything is mixed and creamy.
  3. Transfer to a clean, airtight jar. Use immediately or keep in the fridge.
  4. Keep in the fridge and use within 1-2 weeks.

Notes:

  1. Add maple syrup, agave nectar or coconut sugar syrup if a sweeter flavour is preferred.
  2. Remove from fridge 15 minutes before serving as the spread hardens in the fridge.
  3. This works great with Chocolate Cinnamon and Vanilla Cookie flavours too.

Vanilla Cookie Almond Butter

This inexpensive yet delicious homemade almond butter goes with any bread, crackers or even veggie sticks! Some patience is needed to blend roasted almonds till creamy, but trust us, it’s worth the little bit of effort. Also oil, sugar and gluten-free.

Makes about 400 grams

Macros (1 tbsp):

  • 6.5 g protein
  • 4.7 g carbohydrate
  • 12.4 g fat
  • 3 g fibre

Ingredients:

  • 5 cups raw almonds
  • 1/2 cup BioTechUSA Vegan Protein Vanilla Cookie flavour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Steps:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Spread the almonds across a large, rimmed baking sheet and toast the almonds for 10 minutes, stirring halfway. Let the almonds cool until they are warm.
  2. Transfer the almonds to a high-speed blender or strong food processor. Blend until creamy, pausing to scrape down the sides when needed. The almonds will go from flour-like clumps, to a ball or a mass pressed against the sides of the container. Use a spatula to keep breaking up the crumbs/ball if needed, and continue blending. Stop when the almonds turn creamy. During blending, pause when the mixture or machine gets too hot.
  3. Once the almond butter is very smooth and creamy, add salt and 1/3 of the protein powder. Blend till combined, and add another 1/3. Continue until all the protein powder is used and everything is combined.
  4. Let the almond butter cool to room temperature, then transfer the mixture to a container or jar with lid. It can be refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

Notes:

  • You can dress this up with sweet spices like cinnamon and nutmeg.
  • Try it out with other types of nuts too!

Protein Pineapple Chia Jam

A great way to sweeten up your breakfast while adding an omega-3 boost. Oil, sugar and gluten-free.

Makes about 450-500 ml

Macros (2 tbsp)

  • 4.2 g protein
  • 7.25 g carbohydrates
  • 0.75 g fat
  • 1.25 g fibre

Ingredients

  • About 800g pineapple, chopped
  • 2/3 cup BiotechUSA Forest Fruit Vegan Protein
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Skin of 1 lemon, chopped into big pieces
  • 1/3 cup water, more if needed

Instructions

  • Blend the pineapple in a food processor to get a liquid paste.
  • Place pineapple and lemon skins in a large saucepan. Heat it over low-medium heat, mash and stir.
  • When the pineapple mixture is boiling gently, stir in BioTechUSA Forest Fruit Vegan Protein.
  • Add in water till you get a runny mixture. Continue to simmer over low heat.
  • When mixture reaches a full boil, pour in chia seeds and mix. Continue to boil for 15 to 20 minutes or until desired texture is achieved. It should be much thinner than your desired consistency as it sets in the fridge.
  • Remove from heat and let sit for 15 minutes.
  • Serve with bread or crackers. The jam can be kept in the fridge for up to 3 weeks in a covered jar.

Notes:

  • Chia seeds here are important, they help thicken the jam. Sugar or pectin also works.
  • Works with other fruits like mango and berries too.
  • Try this out with Banana and Vanilla Cookie flavours too!

 

Crazybadman x morethanveggies – protein mango no-bake ‘cheese’cake recipe

vegan protein powder cake

If you’re following my social pages, you might have already heard of Crazybadman. They are a home-grown sports distributor that sells the best-tasting vegan protein powders I’ve had. It dissolves well without sedimentation, and there’s a huge range of flavours like Chocolate Cinnamon (my favourite), Vanilla Cookie, Hazelnut, Forest Fruit and more. Since they taste good and are very versatile, I’ve started collaborating with Crazybadman to create high protein recipes of sweets and desserts that suit the lifestyle of any active person. Use MORETHANVEGGIES10 for 10% off during checkout when buying any flavour of the vegan protein powders.

vegan mango cheesecake
Available from Crazybadman. Recipe video below!

Personally, I have a love/hate relationship with exercise. I grew up hating exercise; I was the type of kid who preferred to read and watch TV. After years of struggling with poor digestion, almost all the TCM and Ayurvedic doctors I’ve seen strongly recommended exercise as a cure. So I started yoga, then moved on to more intense sports like weight training and Muay Thai. I enjoyed the latter two a lot, but stopped because gym memberships are rather expensive, and now I’m trying to avoid going out. Now my lifestyle is a lot more active compared to my days in CBD as my work is more kitchen-oriented. So I don’t consume protein powder frequently, but it’s very helpful when I’m rushing for classes and only have time to make a smoothie.

Homemade coconut yoghurt, papaya, banana, Forest Fruit Vegan Protein smoothie – dinner during evening classes. White pepper was a prop used in class, had nothing to do with the smoothie 🙂

SG-Based Athletes I admire

I know a few vegan athletes (or just super fit folks) who are based in Singapore, they are extremely active and fit, probably more than I’d ever hope to be! I really admire their dedication to improving themselves and guiding others on their fitness journey. If you need some plant-based fitness inspo, here are their pages.

  • Maria (Featured above, bodybuilder, I make her food!)
  • Aaron (Bodybuilder, I make his food too!) 
  • Luke Tan (Fitness coach and author) 
  • Cat Yeo (Fitness coach) 
  • Kenneth (Also a business owner and great cook!)
  • Aly (Yoga teacher & influencer)
  • Ryza (Also a fantastic home cook and baker)
  • Krystle (Group fitness instructor, nutritionist)
  • Amanda (Yoga teacher & artist)

Protein-packed treat for hot days

This Mango No-bake ‘Cheese’cake is a frozen, creamy sweet treat with a crumbly salted crust. High in protein, good fats and vitamins thanks to BioTech USA Vegan Protein, nuts, coconut oil and fruits. Tangy, subtly sweet and melts in your mouth – perfect for hot days. Also gluten and cholesterol free, no baking required! I find each slice extremely filling, so try it for breakfast or share it with a loved one.

Use code MORETHANVEGGIES10 for 10% for any vegan protein flavours from Crazybadman.

Macros (per slice when cake is cut into 6 slices):

  • 30 g protein
  • 45 g carbohydrate
  • 59 g fat
  • 3 g fibre

Prepare one day in advance prior to serving. Soak cashews overnight. Makes one 9″ cake.

For the crust:

  • 6 tbsp unsalted peanut butter (or other nut butter of your choice)
  • ½ cup of any roasted nuts/seeds
  • ½ cup of oats
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1 tbsp vanilla paste
  • 1 tsp sea salt

Blend all in food processor until it holds together well when pressed or shaped. Grease your pan/mould with oil and press crust firmly into the base.

For the filling:

  • 120g BiotechUSA Vegan Protein Vanilla Cookie Flavour
  • 1 large ripe mango, peeled and chopped
  • 2/3 cup coconut oil (do not replace)
  • 2 and ½ cups dry cashews, soaked overnight
  • ½ cup lemon juice
  • Zest from 1 lemon
  • ½ cup syrup (optional, maple syrup recommended)
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 1 tbsp vanilla paste
  • Red dragon fruit, peeled and cubed, for topping (optional)
  • Chocolate sauce, for topping (optional)
  • Crushed nuts, for topping (optional)

Blend everything except coconut oil and toppings together to a smooth yellowish paste. Pour in coconut oil and blend again to combine. Pour on top of crust into the pan/mold. Flatten the filling with a spatula or back of a spoon. Freeze overnight. To serve, take the cake out to defrost for 15 minutes at room temperature. Add toppings of your choice. Slice and serve.

Notes:

  • Blend the coconut oil after everything is combined to prevent lumps of powder from forming.
  • Try this with other BioTechUSA flavours like Hazelnut, Chocolate Cinnamon and Banana.
  • Other fruits like banana, berries, pineapple, work great too. Always use ripe fruits for best flavour.
  • For a smooth and creamy cake, use a powerful blender. Pausing after blending for a while is recommended to avoid overheating the blender’s motor.

VEGAN KAYA RECIPE VIDEO

My kaya recipe, which was posted 3 years back, turned out to be the most popular recipe! We Southeast Asians really love our velvety smooth and coconut-y sweet breakfast spread, and we want it vegan too! I’ve decided to put out a video since kaya is quite complex to make. It is easier to follow if the steps visually and sequentially laid out.

For foreign friends, pandan leaves are like our vanilla. Being a tropical plant that needs a lot of water, pandan is not cultivated anywhere other than Southeast and South Asia. It’s used in almost all Southeast Asian sweets, drinks and sometimes savoury dishes too. It has a light, pleasant and unique fragrance that can’t exactly be substituted. Likely your local Asian grocery store will carry the extract, frozen or canned version.


Nyonya Kaya recipe

Takes 2-3 hours. Makes 300ml.

  • 300g silken tofu (I prefer non-organic tofu. Organic tofu tends to have a stronger soy taste.)
  • 200g raw sugar
  • 200ml coconut milk (Not every brand of coconut milk works, some give an overly strong coconut taste. You have to experiment.)
  • 8 pandan leaves cut into strips
  • 2 knotted pandan leaves
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Blend the silken tofu and pour into steel mixing bowl. Blend pandan leaves with coconut milk and strain into the bowl. Add in sugar and salt. Place mixing bowl over a pot of boiling water simmering over low heat. Stir every 5-10mins for 15 -20 mins till mixture thickens slightly. Sieve into another bowl to remove lumps. Return to heat and cook for 20-30mins, stirring every 5-10 mins till mixture becomes slightly thinner than desired consistency (it sets and thickens in fridge). Let cool, transfer into clean container.

Homemade kaya’s shelf life is not as long as store bought ones. It can be kept in an air tight container up for 1 week in the fridge. Always scoop out with clean utensils. Never store anything homemade with coconut milk at room temperature for long, eg for more than 3 hours.


Nutritional Comments

By nutritionist Krystle Koh.

Kaya is not a health food but you definitely can make it healthier! Homemade Kaya is so much healthier than the usual kaya spread sold in groceries stores — made without preservatives, chemicals or other colourings.  Since this kaya recipe is free from animal ingredients, it is completely cholesterol-free. A great option for those watching calories or cholesterol levels.

This recipe is lower in fat compared to the conventional kaya. Kaya spread can be quite high in sugar nonetheless therefore use it sparingly if you are watching your sugar intake. Raw sugar is less refined and has slightly more minerals than white sugar. Using pandan leaves is better than artificial pandan flavouring, health and taste wise!

This recipe uses silken tofu as an egg substitute. Not only it helps to give the spread a smooth texture, tofu is also a great source of plant-based protein, complex carbohydrates and calcium. Compared to eggs, it is much lower in saturated fat and is cholesterol-free.

Coconut milk in this recipe is an essential ingredient to create fragrance and gives a creamy texture. Although coconut milk is a high saturated fat food, it is not a good reason to avoid it like the plague. Eating fats at moderate amounts is good for balancing hormones (especially among women), keep your skin soft, supple and provides you with satiation (prevents you from getting too peckish in between meals). You are less likely to snack and therefore could help in weight management.

The saturated fatty acids present in the coconut meat is made up of medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs); which is unlike the long-chain triglycerides usually found in certain processed plant oils and animal fats. Some studies suggests that this type of MCTs can be easily metabolized by the body to become energy or ketones in the liver— so it is less likely to be stored as fat in the body. However, over-consumption of any high-calorie food will result in fat accumulation. Coconut milk also contains a type of fatty acids called lauric acids, which has anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-viral properties and could therefore potentially prevent infection. So we do not need to fear fats if they are consumed in healthy amounts!

Hope you find this how-to video useful! If you enjoyed it, please subscribe to my channel.

YouTube Channel Launch – Kueh Bahulu Recipe Video

Happy New Year!

A new year, a new beginning! 2018 marks the start of my first ever YouTube channel. In 2016 some friends had already suggested YouTube since I’m trained in video and animation. But I was so occupied with work at a design studio that I didn’t have much free time. It was only when I started freelancing in 2017 (even though the workload is the same), I had the flexibility to take on new personal projects.

Hope to bring more engaging content to anyone interested in healthier foods, as I know people generally like viewing than reading. Many recipes also require techniques that are best shown visually. Please like, subscribe and enable notifications to my channel to be notified when new videos are out. Currently planning to release one video per month, that’s the best I can do as I need to prioritise my clients’ works, but the wait will be worth it! I’ll still have regular 2-3 times monthly blog posts here, so don’t worry, I won’t be leaving here 🙂

In some Southeast Asian countries, kueh (or kuih) is a generic Malay (or Bahasa) word for snack, usually referring to traditional snacks made with wheat or rice flour, coconut, tapioca, sticky rice and pandan.

Kueh bahulu is a bite-sized sponge cake quite similar to French madeleines but with much simpler ingredients, in fact it’s been called the Asian madeleine by some. It was chosen to be the first video recipe as this snack is close to every Singaporean’s heart. I’ve never seen an eggless recipe for it yet. It’s something that every neighbourhood bakery has, packed in small plastic bags, usually sold for a dollar or two. Also a regular sight at Malay or Chinese familys’ snack tables during Hari Raya or Chinese New Year. If you don’t take eggs for whatever reason, you won’t miss out on the nostalgia with this recipe. Here I used aquafaba (chickpea water) to replace the eggs and tweaked the traditional recipe to maximise rising. Since there’s a limit to the degree of fluffiness achievable with aquafaba, it’s not as airy as the egg ones. Still it’s a soft, slightly chewy and delightful snack reminiscent of childhood.


Kueh Bahulu (makes 18-22 depends on mould)

  • 90g plain flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 90g raw sugar
  • Aquafaba from 1 can of chickpeas
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla essence/paste
  • 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp neutral flavoured oil

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 180C/355F.
  2. Grease and flour your mould(s). If you’re using the traditional aluminium one, preheat it in oven for about 20mins after greasing, then flour it after removing from oven.
  3. Put flour and sugar into metal pans and place in oven. This is to remove moisture so it keeps longer.
  4. Using an electric mixer, whip aquafaba and vinegar in a large bowl till soft to stiff peaks. Took me about 15mins on high speed.
  5. Remove flour and sugar from oven.
  6. Add 1/3 of the sugar into the whipped aquafaba, and whip at medium speed till just combined.
  7. Repeat till all sugar is used up. Beat till mixture ribbons, about 10-15mins on high speed.
  8. Add oil, vanilla and mix on low for few seconds till you see no more patches of both.
  9. Sieve the heated flour into the mixture 1/3 at a time. Using a whisk, mix till just combined.
  10. Repeat till all flour is used up. Do not over mix.
  11. Pour batter into your mould(s). Tap the moulds lightly few times to remove air bubbles. Bake for 15mins or till golden brown, rotating the pan at around 8mins.
  12. Repeat till all batter is used up. If you’re using the same mould, you will need to grease and flour again before pouring the batter.
  13. Let kueh cool in mould for about 5mins or until it is easy to remove, then use toothpick to release it. Let cool on a rack completely before storing.

Notes:

  • Use a non-stick metal mould instead, the traditional aluminium one sticks too easily and is very hard to clean :/
  • Don’t keep sugar in the oven too long as it’ll melt. About 10-15mins of heating on fan mode is good enough.
  • Bake longer for more crisp and brown exterior.
  • Keeps well in fridge for 1week, not recommended to keep at room temperature (in the tropics) for more than 2 days.
  • The kueh will harden in the fridge, best to toast it lightly for few mins before eating.

If you enjoyed the video, please like, share and subscribe for more! Thank you SO MUCH for your support over the past years! I’m really excited to bring more varied recipes to different platforms, hope to show more people the beauty of vegan food! May your 2018 be full of blessings, health and happiness.

 

rustic gingerbread cookies

Christmas is around the corner, so I’m posting a Western recipe for a change! As a spice lover, I love anything gingerbread. Ginger isn’t the only spice used despite the name, cinnamon, nutmeg are usually also present as well. The traditional gingerbread also includes cloves, but I didn’t have any on hand so I use Chinese five spice and sometimes cardamom. I’ve been making it like this for 2 years, and it always turns out moist, slightly chewy, homely and comforting. So I’m sharing the recipe here.

As a (sometimes) lazy cook, I love simplifying and reducing the steps needed. This recipe is very basic. I didn’t want to top it off with icing or frosting as I find it’s too sweet and troublesome. Icing sugar is my least favourite baking ingredient – it has no nutritional value, a mess to work with and will attract ants if some gets on the floor! If you want to add icing, I’ve included the recipe below too. This year I also didn’t want to use cookie cutters as that means more steps and more utensils to wash.

The dough can be made in advance up to 2 days. Keep in the fridge and remove once you are ready to portion and bake. The dough also rolls well and can be cut with cookie cutters into various shapes before baking.


RUSTIC GINGERBREAD COOKIES

Makes around 20 pieces

  • 1/3 cup neutral flavoured plant oil (I use grapeseed)
  • 3/4 cup raw sugar
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 1/4 cup non-dairy milk (I use oat)
  • 2 cups plain flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 and 1/2 tsp ginger powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves or cardamom or five spice powder
  • 1/2 tbsp vanilla paste

In a large bowl, whisk oil with molasses and raw sugar till mixed together into wet crumb-like texture. Add non-dairy milk, vanilla and whisk till combined. Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and all spices into the mixture. Add salt. Use a spatula and mix in one direction till just combined into a dough. Place dough into a sheet of cling wrap, spread it out, flatten and wrap. Chill in fridge for 1 hour to 2 days.

Preheat oven to 175C. Portion dough into 25g balls and place onto a pan lined with baking paper. Flatten slightly. Bake at 175C for 12-16mins, rotating halfway. Remove from oven, let it cool on baking paper for 1 min and transfer to cooling rack. Let it cool completely before serving or storing. Cookies can keep up to 4 days at room temperature.

FOR ROYAL ICING (Makes around 1 cup of icing)

  • 1 cup icing sugar, or more if needed
  • 4 tbsp aquafaba, or more if needed (it’s chickpea water, simply drain out a can of chickpeas)
  • 1 tsp vanilla paste
  • Colourings or other flavours, optional

Whip aquafaba and vanilla in a metal bowl with an electric mixer till foamy. Add sugar and vanilla, mix till glossy with soft peaks. Add more liquid (if too dry) or sugar (if too runny) till desired consistency. Do not over mix. Transfer a small amount into piping bag and test on a piece of baking paper. If it sinks a few mins after drawing, it’s too runny so add few tbsp more sugar. Once you’re happy with the consistency, draw onto cooled cookies. Keep the iced cookies uncovered at room temperature to dry the icing before storing. It takes about 1 hour to half a day depending on room temperature, humidity and design of the icing.

Gingerbread men I made last year.

To make shapes with cookie cutters, simply roll out the dough onto a clean flour surface till about 0.5-0.7 cm thick. Cut with cutters, remove the extra dough in-between shapes and repeat the rolling and cutting till you use up all the dough. For these cookies, reduce the baking time by 5 – 8 mins to avoid them turning out too hard as they are much thinner.

Still prefer making these – much less hassle, just as tasty.

Announcement:

I’ve started conducting cooking and baking classes! I aim to keep my classes more affordable than regular classes so that it’s as accessible to more people. To keep costs low, I will try to get sponsors. If you’re a vegan business or one selling quality vegan products and will like to sponsor ingredients for my future classes, email me at morethanveggies@outlook.com.


In this session, I will share straightforward recipes using common ingredients to make rustic Christmas treats for your loved ones. I will explain basics like how to measure ingredients correctly, the roles of ingredients, how to change the recipes to suit your tastes – basically things that are hard to describe in writing and best shown.

You will work with quality ingredients for the toppings, kindly sponsored by local health grocers, Little Farms​. Email (morethanveggies@outlook.com) to book! Limited slots available as class is kept small for max benefit.

Testimonials from the previous class’ participants:

  • “Very simple and easily available ingredients, clear and easy to follow instructions, great mix of students, absolutely and sinfully delish brownies, muffins and cookies!!! I was SUPER IMPRESSED with my baking” – Hui
  • “Morethanveggies baking class was utterly wonderful! Chef patiently explained the procedures and showed us the tricks. With a wealth of up-to-date knowledge, she also advised us on where to get the best ingredients and what to do if we wish to experiment with different flavours.” – Erin

Tropical Christmas pudding (non-alcoholic)

Happy holidays! I love the idea of British Christmas pudding – moist, cake-like, warm spices and oozing with fruity bits and flavours. Why is it called pudding when it’s..cake-y? Anyway, I made it more relevant to the Southeast Asia context by using tropical fruits, no alcohol (halal), reduced sweetness, regional spices. AND, a handful of a quirky addition for more textural interest – black glutinous rice (pulut hitam). Pulut hitam is an Indonesian sweet rice porridge already used to make chiffon cakes and cream cakes here, so I wanted to explore its potential in other baked sweets. Turned out the spices covered the nutty rice flavour, but the rice grains give an interesting chewy bites in between moist fruit and spice!

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Traditionally Christmas pudding is steamed for hours and matured at room temperature (brushed with brandy regularly) for months. Ain’t got time for that! Plus it might not last a few days at our humidity and temperature. This is a simplified baked version that significantly reduces time and effort. Recipe adapted from The Vegan Society.

For the fruit mix:

200g dried mixed fruits
100g chopped dried mango
100g chopped dried pineapple
3 teabags of black tea (assam or darjeeling works best)

Brew the tea for 10mins with about 800ml of hot water in a large bowl. Add in dried fruits and soak for 30mins – 1 hour, until they swell up to a plump mass. Sieve out the fruits and drain. DON’T pour the soaking liquid – it should taste like a delicious fruity tea now!

Other tropical fruit mix ideas can include tamarind, coconut (desiccated should give best flavour), banana, jackfruit, lychee, and if you’re feeling adventurous, durian (Honestly, try it! Might give the alcohol taste without using actual alcohol). Basically any flavourful fruit that is not too wet should work well. You can steep the fruits a day in advance too.

For the base:

200g vegan butter
2 tbsp gula melaka (coconut sugar syrup)
100g wholemeal flour
100g oatmeal flour (simply pulse oatmeal in food processor)
3 tbsp baking powder
100g soft brown sugar
1 grated granny smith apple
3 tsp five-spice powder
1 tsp ginger powder (or 1 tbsp grated ginger)
1 tsp cinnamon powder
½ tsp ground cardamom
½ tsp salt
Juice and zest of half lemon
3 tbsp fruit mix soaking liquid
1 cup cooked black glutinous rice (Optional. Can tapao from food court, but remember those are sweetened already!)

Preheat oven to 180C. Cream butter and syrup in a large bowl. Add all base ingredients and fruit mix, mix until just combined. Grease a large metal basin (around 1.5 litres) and line the base with parchment paper. Pour in the mixture, leave 2.5 cm till the top free to give room for rising. Cover basin with parchment paper and aluminum foil, tie tightly with a non-plastic string. Bake for 2 hours or so until a skewer comes out clean from the center. (I cut the string after an hour and lifted the papers to check then sealed it back without string – didn’t seem to affect the baking). Let cool in bowl for 5 mins before removing gently onto cooling rack.

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Can be kept in fridge for up to a week. Brushing with soaking liquid everyday will help develop richer flavours. To reheat after taking out of fridge, brush with soaking liquid and steam for 8-10mins. Serve with a drizzle of coconut milk or cream and enjoy with tea or coffee.

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Vegan Kaya

Kaya, a Southeast Asian coconut egg jam , is a breakfast staple on many Singaporeans’ dining tables. Before supermarkets, many households had their own kaya formula, often cooked over a charcoal stove for hours. Current vegan versions on the market use pumpkin or sweet potato as base texture – a creative reinvention, but nonetheless not the same as the traditional silky smooth, velvety kaya with rich coconut-y notes and sweet aroma of pandan. The following recipes covers both types of kaya popular in Singapore – Hainanese, which is richly caramel, and Nonya, which is refreshingly pandan. You can’t tell it’s not made from eggs! Both processes are similar so if you master one, the other will be a breeze! (Photos here show the making of Nonya kaya)

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The egg replacer might be sitting in you fridge now – silken tofu! Blended silken tofu is already used in many Western vegan recipes like quiche and creme brulee, where eggs give texture and bulk. Apparently its proteins coagulate under heat similar to eggs.

If you have a preferred recipe from grandma (lucky you!) feel free to use that. Just replace the eggs with equal volumes of blended tofu. The following recipes were adapted from Singapore Hawker Classics Unveiled book and rasamalaysia with sugar slightly reduced.

Hainanese Kaya
300g silken tofu (I used suitable for frying type)

200g sugar

50g raw sugar (to give brown colour)

100ml coconut cream

200ml coconut milk

2-4 knotted pandan leaves

¼ tsp salt (optional, helps to preserve)

Blend the silken tofu in a blender. Pour into a steel mixing bowl, whisk in coconut milk, coconut cream, salt and sugar. Place mixing bowl over a pot of boiling water simmering over low heat. Stir continuously for 15 min till mixture thickens slightly. Sieve into another bowl to remove lumps. Return to heat and add in pandan leaves. In another small pan, melt the raw sugar and add the caramel into the mixture. Cook for 20-30mins, stirring every 5 mins till mixture becomes slightly thinner than desired consistency (It hardens in fridge). Let cool, transfer into clean container.

Nonya Kaya

300g silken tofu

200g sugar

200ml coconut milk

8 pandan leaves cut into strips

¼ tsp salt

Blend the silken tofu and pour into steel mixing bowl. Blend pandan leaves with coconut milk and strain into the bowl. Add in sugar and salt. Place mixing bowl over a pot of boiling water simmering over low heat. Stir continuously for 15 -20 mins till mixture thickens slightly. Sieve into another bowl to remove lumps. Return to heat and cook for 20-30mins, stirring every 5 mins till mixture becomes slightly thinner than desired consistency (It hardens in fridge). Let cool, transfer into clean container.

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Notes: Traditional recipe uses mainly white sugar (SIS brand is vegan), you may experiment with all raw sugar or palm/coconut sugar for a richer coconut flavour. Ultimately, kaya, like most of our Southeast Asian foods, have no recipe set in stone. If an eggy hint is preferred, a pinch of black salt (kala namak) does the trick. Yes, you won’t miss foods you love after going vegan 🙂

Salted Caramel Butter – No sugar used!

 

Have been meaning to make these since a long time ago, to add another spreadable condiment to my repertoire (besides peanut sauce). Now it’s the holidays, finally! 🙂

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Have seen lots of recipes which calls for boiling a huge amount of sugar. That isn’t easy because sugar burns easily, and of course, not that healthy. This recipe’s inspired by V.K. Rees.

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Ingredients (yields 2 cups) :

200g pitted medjool dates (About 15 medium-sized dates). Soak in water for half an hour till soft.

2 tsp sea salt (More can be added to taste)

¼ cup of any non-dairy milk (Coconut will yield the creamiest result)

1.5 tsp vanilla extract

¼ cup vegan margarine

Place all in a food processor and blend till smooth.

 

Buttery and creamy, the dates add a slight coconut-y aftertaste. I kept the skins of the dates for nutrition and I rather like the grainier texture which resulted. But you’re welcome to remove them if you want a smoother blend.

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Top on cakes, coffee, tea, pastries. Put with apples as an alternative to peanut butter, makes a good lunchbox snack for your little ones too!

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