Luke Hines: recipes from Eat More Vegan

Regardless of your food philosophy, we can all agree that we need to eat more plants. In Eat More Vegan LUKE HINES changes up a few favourites.

Crispy onion bhajis with chilli vegan mayo.

Crispy onion bhajis with chilli vegan mayo.

Crispy onion bhajis with chilli vegan mayo

These crispy onion bhajis make the perfect snack or simple starter. They're light, crispy and completely more-ish! And jazzing up my easy vegan mayo with a few simple spices transforms it into the perfect accompaniment here.

Ingredients

2 white onions

60g arrowroot or tapioca flour

3 tbsp almond meal

1/2 tsp gluten-free baking powder

1 tsp sea salt

1 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp ground turmeric

1 long red chilli, finely chopped

2 tbsp finely chopped coriander leaves

1 tsp lemon juice

125ml filtered water

coconut oil, for frying

Chilli vegan mayo:

40g vegan mayo

1/4 tsp chilli powder

1/4 tsp smoked paprika

Method

1. For the chilli vegan mayo, stir the mayo, chilli powder and smoked paprika together in a bowl. Set aside.

2. Using a spiraliser, mandoline or sharp knife, spiralise or very finely slice the onions.

3. Place the arrowroot or tapioca flour, almond meal, baking powder, salt, cumin, turmeric, chilli, coriander and lemon juice in a large bowl and whisk to combine, then whisk in the water to create a lovely thick batter. Add the onion and, using your hands, mix well.

4. Preheat the oven to 100C.

5. Heat a large, heavy-based frying pan over medium heat and fill with coconut oil to a depth of 1cm. Heat the oil to 180C. (To test if the oil is hot enough, simply drop a small piece of bread into it - if it sizzles and bubbles, you're good to go.) Carefully lower tablespoons of the bhaji mixture into the pan - about four bhajis per batch - and fry for two minutes, turning halfway through, until golden brown and crispy. Remove the bhajis with a slotted spoon and place on a plate lined with paper towel to drain. Transfer to the oven to keep warm and repeat with the remaining batter.

6. Divide the bhajis among plates or pile onto a serving platter, sprinkle with salt and serve with the chilli vegan mayo for dipping.

Serves 4.

Hemp and beetroot burgers with the lot.

Hemp and beetroot burgers with the lot.

Hemp and beetroot burgers with the lot

Mastering the art of the perfect meatless burger all came down to experimenting with delicious hemp seeds. They really hold this burger together and provide a lovely nutty texture, plus heaps of nutrition from all the healthy omega-3s and protein that's packed into them.

Ingredients

55g hulled hemp seeds, plus 3 tbsp extra

175g sunflower seeds, plus 3 tbsp extra

2 beetroot, peeled and coarsely chopped

2 tsp onion powder

1 tsp sea salt

1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

1 tsp ground cumin

1 tbsp ground coriander

1 heaped tsp dried parsley

1 tbsp coconut cream

1 tbsp arrowroot or tapioca flour

35g almond meal

1-2 tbsp filtered water, if needed

extra-virgin olive oil, for greasing

To serve:

1 butter lettuce, leaves separated

1 tomato, finely sliced

1 avocado, finely sliced

1 Lebanese cucumber, cut into ribbons

3 tbsp vegan mayo

Method

1. In a food processor, blitz the hemp and sunflower seeds to a coarse meal consistency. Add the beetroot, onion powder, salt, pepper, cumin, coriander and parsley and pulse for a few seconds to just bring everything together (it should be a little chunky, not a perfect puree - if you have a small food processor you might have to do this in batches).

2. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and add the coconut cream, arrowroot or tapioca flour, almond meal and the extra hemp and sunflower seeds. Mix everything together with a spoon until evenly combined. The mixture should be really moist; if not, add a splash of water.

3. Heat a barbecue grill plate to medium-low or place a chargrill pan over medium-low heat. Lightly grease with olive oil.

4. Divide the hemp mixture into four even-sized portions and shape into patties. Cook for 8-10 minutes on each side, or until nicely charred and cooked through. (Take care when turning the patties over - they hold together well, but you can't be rough with them either.)

5. To serve, pile a handful of lettuce leaves one inside the other to create a lettuce "cup". Repeat to make four cups. Pack each cup with the tomato and avocado, then top with a patty and some cucumber ribbons. Finish with a generous dollop of mayo and some extra salt and pepper. Get stuck in.

Serves 4.

Nice nachos with beetroot chips.

Nice nachos with beetroot chips.

Nice nachos with beetroot chips

As you know, I like to make things from scratch. So, rather than using packet corn chips, I've done a little thinking outside the square and opted for colourful beetroot chips instead. Using beetroot adds so much vibrancy to the plate that just looking at this dish makes me happy.

Ingredients

3 large beetroot, rinsed and scrubbed

olive or avocado oil or oil spray

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Avocado cream:

2 avocados

2 tbsp coconut cream

2 tsp extra-virgin olive, avocado, macadamia or hemp oil

zest and juice of 1 lime

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Spicy tomato salsa:

4 tomatoes, finely diced

1/2 red onion, finely diced

1 bunch of coriander, leaves roughly chopped, plus extra to serve

1 long red chilli, finely chopped

zest and juice of 1 lime

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive, avocado, macadamia or hemp oil

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Macadamia cheese:

160g macadamia nuts, soaked in water for one hour, drained

125ml filtered water

1/2 tsp sea salt

zest and juice of 1 lemon

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 190C and place an oven rack in the centre of the oven. Line two baking trays with baking paper.

2. Using a mandoline or sharp knife, slice the beetroot as finely as possible (they should curl a little when cut). Divide the slices between the prepared trays and spray or very lightly drizzle with the oil, season with salt and pepper and toss well to coat. Arrange the coated slices in a single layer, making sure there is space between each slice for ultimate crispiness, and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until crispy and slightly brown. (Be sure to watch the chips closely past the 15-minute mark as they can burn quickly.) Remove from the oven and set aside to cool while you prepare the other elements.

3. To make the avocado cream, blitz the ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Cover and keep in the fridge until needed.

4. For the tomato salsa, combine all the ingredients in a bowl. Set aside.

5. To make the macadamia cheese, blitz all the ingredients in the food processor until smooth and creamy.

6. When ready to serve, spread the beetroot chips out on a platter. Dollop over spoonfuls of the avocado cream, salsa and macadamia cheese and sprinkle over a little extra chopped coriander to finish.

Serves 4.

Chilli larb lettuce cups

Chilli larb lettuce cups

Chilli larb lettuce cups

This recipe is my attempt at veganising the national dish of Laos, the humble larb. Also very popular in Thai cuisine, it features stir-fried mince, typically pork, that is seasoned with a liberal amount of lime juice and made truly awesome with the addition of plenty of chopped fresh herbs such as mint and coriander.

Ingredients

1/2 head of cauliflower, cut into very small florets

2 tbsp melted coconut oil

1 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp ground coriander

1/2 tsp chilli powder

1/2 tsp ground turmeric

sea salt

Pickle:

125ml apple cider vinegar

2 tsp coconut sugar

1 Lebanese cucumber, halved lengthways, deseeded and finely sliced

1/2 small red onion, finely sliced

1 long red chilli, finely sliced

sea salt

To serve:

12 baby cos lettuce leaves

1 lime, cut into cheeks

1 small handful of coriander leaves

3 tbsp toasted pine nuts

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 180C and line a baking tray with baking paper.

2. For the pickle, add the vinegar and coconut sugar to a large bowl and whisk well. Add the cucumber, onion and chilli, season with a pinch of salt and leave for 15 minutes to pickle. Drain before serving.

Eat More Vegan, by Luke Hines. Plum, $39.99.

Eat More Vegan, by Luke Hines. Plum, $39.99.

3. While the veg are pickling, prepare the larb. Add the cauliflower, coconut oil and spices to a large bowl, season with salt to taste and toss together. Spread the mixture evenly out on the prepared tray and roast for 20-22 minutes, stirring and tossing well halfway through, until the cauliflower is lovely and golden but still a little crunchy.

4. To serve, arrange the lettuce leaves on a serving platter. Pile the larb into the lettuce "cups", spoon over the pickle and scatter over the coriander and pine nuts to finish. Off you go.

Serves 4.

Eat More Vegan, by Luke Hines. Plum, $39.99.

This story Luke Hines: recipes from Eat More Vegan first appeared on The Canberra Times.