Well, last week certainly was a big week. Although it’s only week three, that anticipated feeling of madness has already started to emerge. Life is uni lectures, networking events, studying, study breaks at the beach, working, meeting new people, studying, eating, socialising, exercising and studying.
Somewhere in amongst it all I even submitted my first assignment which was rather terrifying, mostly due to my lack of clarity about the expectation levels.
That being said, I am absolutely loving it. Even that nervousness as I slipped my ethics paper into the submission slot was strangely familiar; almost like confirming that this new world is real.
I am even starting to relish those precious moments of calm where I can take my time preparing a meal. After getting drenched at a 3 year old’s birthday party that ended in a massive shower of rain this afternoon, a warm shower and comfort food seemed like heaven. Thankfully, a night in meant that I had the perfect chance. A few days ago, my aunty told me about a Lentil and Polenta Shepherd’s Pie by Rachael Khoo (that she saw on the SBS food channel of course), which stuck in my mind all week. Whilst my version is almost completely different (bar the use of lentils, carrot and onion), I must say it was exactly what I needed. It’s only vegan because I wanted to challenge myself (I am in challenge mode right now).
This delicious, vegan twist on one of my all time favourite comfort foods is incredibly simple.
- 1 onion finely dices
- 2 cloves garlic crushed
- 1 carrot diced
- 1 zucchini diced
- 1 tin lentils drained and rinsed
- 1 tomato diced
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary leaves roughly chopped
- 2 springs fresh thyme chopped
- 2 tbls soy sauce
- 1 splash of white wine
- 1 splash of apple cider vinegar
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 head cauliflower chopped
- 2 tbls almond milk
- 2 tbls nutritional yeast
- Simply sauté a finely diced onion and 2 cloves of crushed garlic over a medium heat until translucent, add finely chopped carrot and zucchini for a couple of minutes until slightly softened, then add 1 chopped tomato, a tin of lentils, a dash of white wine, a dash of apple cider vinegar, 2 tbls soy sauce, salt, pepper, 1/2 tsp curry powder and a handful of fresh herbs roughly chopped (I used rosemary and thyme). Bring to boil, then simmer over a low heat for 25 minutes. In the meantime, roughly chop 1 head of cauliflower and steam for 10-15 minutes, or until soft. Puree in a food processor with 2tbls almond milk and a pink of salt until smooth. Place the lentil mixture in a pie mix and cover with the cauliflower puree. Sprinkle some nutritional yeast over and bake in the oven for 10 minutes.
- You can use real cheese on top, and real milk in the cauliflower puree if you are not vegan. You can also substitute the soy sauce for tamari if you are gluten free.