Vegan Picnic for Two

Man oh man, it’s sure as hell been a while since I did one of these posts, eh? Sometimes I forget I started out as purely a food blogger …truth be told I didn’t even know what blogging was back then, I just wanted somewhere to keep a record of my recipes and my Husband suggested I start a blog.

Anyway, here we are, some four or so years later and PeaSoupEats is less about eats and more about me. I can never tell if that was a good move or not but hey, we’ll roll with it for the time being.

Let me assure you though, I still cook a lot. A LOT! I am still creating vegan recipes and the kitchen remains my favourite place to hang out. These three recipes were impromptu dishes that I came up with on the spur of the moment after deciding we wanted an early evening picnic in the park, and I must admit they were bang on and totally perfect for outdoor dining. And as ever, they are easy peasy lemon ….you know the rest.

vegan potato salad

6-7 potatoes

2 sticks of celery, finely diced

2 tbsp capers, minced

1 bunch flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

dressing

2 heaped tsp wholegrain or dijon mustard

salt and pepper

1 tbsp cider vinegar

juice 1/2 lemon

1 tsp agave

1/4 cup olive oil

– Boil the potatoes, then drain and allow to cool. Chop into medium size pieces, season and set aside.

– Prepare your celery, capers and parsley. Set aside.

– Put all the dressing ingredients into a jar and shake vigorously until it emulsifies.

– Place everything in a bowl and gently but thoroughly mix together. Place in fridge until needed.

Cous cous with griddle peppers and toasted pinenuts

1 cup cous cous

1/2 red pepper

1/2 green pepper

1/4 cup pinenuts

juice of 1/2 lemon

tamari

hemp oil

tabasco

smoked paprika

– Place the cous cous in a bowl and cover with the same amount of boiling water. Put a plate or lid on top and leave to soak for 10-15 minutes.

– Cook the peppers on a hot griddle skin side up until blackened, then turn over and griddle on the other side.

– Toast the pinenuts in a hot skillet – keep your eye on them, as they can easily burn. Keep shaking them to ensure they are evenly toasted. Transfer to a bowl.

– Fluff the cous cous using a fork, sprinkle over some smoked paprika (to your taste), chop the peppers and add to the bowl, stir through before flavouring with tamari, lemon juice, hemp oil, tabasco and more smoked paprika (again, all to taste, I am pretty generous with everything).

– Give it a final stir through and place in fridge until needed.

Griddled Tenderstem Broccoli with Vegan Pesto Dressing

10 tenderstem broccoli stems

1 tbsp vegan pesto (I like the sundried tomato one from Dress Italian)

1 tbsp lemon juice

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp cider vinegar

nooch (nutritional yeast)

– Brush the broccoli with a little oil and griddle for a few minutes until just cooked. Remove from pan and season. Set aside.

– Place the pesto in a small bowl and lightly whisk in the lemon juice, oil and vinegar.

– Cut the broccoli into thirds, return to plate, spoon over the pesto dressing and generously finish with nooch. Place in a tupperware container and refrigerate until needed.

Well whaddya know, I may just have gotten my food bloggin’ mojo back – must be our impending move to Cornwall getting me all inspired and stuff. Whoop whoop!!

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Thrifted Threads & Vintage Cars

So it’s probably obvious by now I’m struggling to keep my blog posts as regular as they used to be. I’m not going to complain about being busy but a few more minutes in the day would be welcome. Luckily my current placement is full on in the best possible way and I’m getting to write to my hearts content, which suits me just fine – if you’re interested you can pop over to the Hunger Magazine website to have a gander at some of my articles (my name should be at the top of each piece I’ve contributed).

As much as I adore fashion, it’s actually been wonderful being able to write about my other loves – art, music and film – and I’ve learned that I could quite happily spend the majority of my time rattling away on the keyboard. I’m also learning it’s okay to call myself a writer. It still doesn’t feel completely natural to say it but I’m starting to apologise less for my existence, and have discovered a new found confidence in my abilities. It’s been a long time coming I can tell you!

Anyway, the uber long days do take me away from here – mainly because evenings with my Husband have become so precious …I also had my Mum visiting last week, which made blogging pretty much an impossibility. Like all things though, I’m trying to not necessarily find a balance but create one. With our impending move to Cornwall inching nearer, however, I fear I may be setting myself up for failure already.

And the photos? All taken over the last month and visible on my instagram account (yes, still obsessed) and featuring vintage cars I’d love to own and mostly wearing thrifted clothing from various charity shops. Until next time!

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nuttin’ like a cup of joe

Are you as crazy about coffee as me? Are you as fussy about your coffee as me? If the answer is yes, I may just have a very agreeable caffeine filled suggestion that has quickly become our favourite weekend cup ‘o joe in the form of Kopi coffee.

I don’t accept many offers to review products on this blog – unless it is something I genuinely like. I’m a bit fussy like that. But I can’t deny I wasn’t a wee bit pleased to sample the goods on show here ….I loves ma coffee, and anything in the name of research, right?

Being the creatures of habits we are, we tend to stick to tea during the week and indulge ourselves on Saturdays with a fresh pot of the black stuff. We’ve been through dozens of coffee brands over the years and have definitely figured out what we do and don’t like.

Because I tend to prefer mine strong with a little bite whereas my Husband is all about the mild and smooth, we sometimes have difficulty finding a coffee that keeps us both happy. Weirdly this particular flavour seems to satisfy our differing tastes although I do recommend popping in an extra scoop just to give it some added oomph.

It transpires this is a perfect brunch brew and believe me when I tell you we’ve now tried it with just about every breakfast option available. Pancakes – tick! Fry up – tick! Cereal – tick! All round coffee winner – tick!

I’m not sure that constitutes as a review but there you have it. Enjoy!

 

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PeaSoup does Pop Art

Charity shops are like treasure troves to me, an Aladdin’s cave full of possibilities. Given the option, I’m always going to choose thrifting over new buys – not because I don’t like purchasing new things but it’s that sense of the unexpected and the ‘you’ll never know what you might find’ wonder that keeps me excited and going back for more.

Ever since I can remember this has been a favourite past time of mine. It’s a real de-stresser and just endless hours of fun. Now that i’m working in a new area of ┬áLondon, I’m using my sporadic lunchbreaks to explore the area and what charity shops it has to offer. Much to my excitement I found two right beside one another the other day and had myself a very mini haul in the form of this blouse – which I found in the ‘large’ section – and a super cute leopard print midi dress that I’m sure I’ll put up on the blog at some point.

I was in a particularly good mood when I bought it and also when I wore it, so I feel sure this little blouse is going to become a bit of a feature in my wardrobe over the summer months – I’m even planning on using it as a cover up with my Toast polka dot bikini when we finally hit those Cornish beaches. Many times when people thrift (especially if the clothes have already been divided into sizes) they stick to the section they think will fit them and avoid all the others. My rule is to look at every section including the men’s because you might be missing out on some real gems – I actually found an awesome men’s Hawaiian shirt recently but foolishly decided not to take it ….major shopping regret!

And this is not meant to be a dis to those wonderful people who volunteer their time at a charity shop (I admire those peeps a lot) but for the most part they don’t really know what is good thrifting material and what isn’t. By that I mean, they often don’t put out the ‘crap’ from the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s because they think people want the newer stuff – I’ve even overheard them say as much. I can totally see why they might think that too. But that’s not the only reason there is a lack of real vintage in our charity’s shops at present. You know those places that curate the vintage clothes for you, places like rokit and beyond retro? Yeah, well they buy up all the proper vintage from the charity shops before it even hits the rails only to sell it at a premium price in their stores, and I kinda have an issue with that to be honest but anyway.

Another thing those lovely Ladies and Gents in the charity shop aren’t really up on is sizing – and why should they be, so this is not a criticism I’m simply just pointing out the facts. Larges end up in small section and vice versa. They also don’t take into consideration vintage, European or American sizing, which is how I’ve come to find a US12 in the small section and a European 36 in the large – and forget about vintage sizes, they honestly haven’t a clue and will just chuck it anywhere. So the lesson is ….check every rail, every section, every cubby hole and also ask if they have anything out back you could take a look at, and maybe tell them what it is you’re looking for, i.e. a colourful 60’s printed dress, a great 50’s skirt etc. If it’s a charity shop you regularly visit why not ask them to keep aside any items they think you might like for the next time you come in – you never know what fantastic pieces you could end up with!

what i’m wearing ….blouse/pdsa charity shop ….jeans/primark ….sandals/primark ….glasses/curtis opticians

 

 

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Picnic Pair

Taking mini time outs is the only thing keeping us sane at the moment. Hubbie is working more than ever (not complain’, just sayin’) so entire days are an impossibility right now.

Today we sneaked out for a couple of hours to have a boozy picnic in the park – fresh fruit and sparkling (pink!) wine…it was perfect.

Thank goodness the weather was hot enough to have a little sunbathe – not so much as a chill in the air, I was very impressed. Could this be the beginning of summer? I can only hope so because I for one am sick to death of this godawful rain.

If it weren’t for the close proximity to Charlton House I think we’d have gone a bit bonkers by now – in absence of any outside space of our own this has become our salvation, as well you know seeing as I bang on about it so much!

Our heads are already half in Cornwall although we’re trying to enjoy what is left of our London life. But when sea, sand and surf beckons it can be hard to remain in the present.

I’m sure everyone has this problem – remembering to live in the moment. Today though, we were able to do just that. It was nice.

 

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