At the beginning of 2015, my sister wrote up a ’30 before 30’ list that provides thirty activities she would like to complete before she turns the big 3.0 in December. Number #5 on her list was to attend a cooking class which neither of us had done before.
I love working in Carlton for so many reasons, particularly because there are so many restaurants and cafes in the area that provide vegan options. In October 2014, an all vegan restaurant opened quite literally 5 minutes from my work and I have spent most of my lunch breaks there since.
Mantra Lounge not only offers vegan food, its core value is non-violence towards animals or going by Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra’s –the first Yama: Ahimsa. Every Wednesday evening the second floor of the restaurant holds Mantra and Music Meditation and on Thursday evenings there are ‘Think Out Loud’ sessions where you can discuss topics that are dear to your heart.
The best part is that for just $20 each – you can attend vegan cooking classes every Monday evening and that is what drew my sister and I to attend last Monday where we made yummy vegan omelettes.
Before we began, we adhered to Mantra’s custom of washing our hands and rinsing out our mouths. We discussed what cooking and food meant to us. We were asked to think of things we are truly grateful for every time we cook and to put as much love into the dish as possible. As mentioned in my last post, cooking can be a meditative activity and one that fills us with joy and appreciation as some less fortunate people do not have access to food as easily as we do.
Ironically, the class consisted of two sisters and two brothers both with the same age difference. It felt nice and homely to be surrounded by family. The four of us took it in turns to chop veggies, measure quantities into mixing bowls and pour the mixture into the pan. We learnt more about ingredients we wouldn’t normally use in the kitchen such as nutritional yeast and chickpea flour. The chef continued to ask us about our lives and our passions. The experience was unique and she ended the session with a Hare Krishna chant.
The omelettes were delicious and she let us top them with the tastiest homemade hummus.
I am looking forward to making the omelettes again and tonight when I attempt to bake a Raw Vegan Blueberry Cheesecake for my cousin who is turning 18 – I will pour love into the dish so he knows I was thinking of him and his special day.
Here are some photographs I took of the memorable evening and I’ve listed the recipe for Vegan Veggie Omelettes below plus a simple yet yummy method of making homemade hummus!
Love and Peace xxx
Vegan Veggie Tofu Omelettes – Serves x4
- ¼ cups chickpea flour
- ¼ teaspoon dried turmeric
- 1 tablespoon choice of dried herbs
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 1¼ cup water, plus more if necessary to achieve a pourable consistency
- 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (optional)
- 2 tomatoes diced
- 2 blocks of firm tofu drained
- 1 ½ cups of bean sprouts
- 1 cup of chopped spinach
- 2 cups of chopped parsley
- 4 stalks of asparagus chopped
- Olive Oil
- Sea salt – optional for sprinkling on top
- Combine chickpea flour, dried turmeric, crumbled firm tofu, dried herbs and nutritional yeast in a medium-sized bowl. Add water and lemon juice and use a whisk to stir together, getting rid of any clumps.
- Stir in chopped parsley. The consistency of the batter should be pourable and not too thick. Add 1-2 tablespoons of water and stir again, if necessary, to achieve the proper consistency.
- Spray a medium pan lightly with olive oil and heat on medium.
- Pour half the batter into your pan. Place a lid over the pan to help it cook faster. Reduce the heat to medium-low and let the omelette cook for 3-4 minutes.
- Once the top of the omelette has started to cook, use a spatula or a plate to help flip the omelette onto the other side.
- Reduce the heat to low, place the lid on the pan, and let it cook for another 4-5 minutes.
- Serve hot – place tomatoes, bean sprouts, asparagus and spinach on one half and fold omelette or leave flat. Add hummus on top for extra filling.
Fresh Vegan Hummus
- 3 cups cooked chickpeas (or 2 15-ounce cans, 1 drained)
- 2 to 4 cloves garlic peeled or crushed
- 2 tablespoons tahini
- 2 to 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 to 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/8 to 1/2 teaspoon chipotle chili powder or cayenne pepper
- Salt to taste
- Place all ingredients except salt in the blender in the order listed, using the smaller amounts. Blend and stop when you need to smooth out clumps with a spoon.
- If the mixture is too thick, add additional water a little at a time. Keep blending until hummus is completely smooth.
- Stop blender and taste the hummus. Add additional seasonings and salt to taste and blend briefly to combine.
- Store hummus in a sealed container in the refrigerator. Use within a week.
Peace & Love xoxo
ah, it’s a great pity there are no any vegan restaurants in my town. Now, I definitely should open my own one 🙂
Which area of town are you from? The world could always do with more vegan restaurants 🙂 thank you for reading!
I’m from Russia. It speaks volumes 🙂
Ahh I’ve never been to Russia – is it difficult to be a vegan there? I’m noticing more and more options becoming available worldwide these days – hopefully this is true in your part of the world as well friend 🙂
you know, when I recently went to buy some tofu, a salesperson told me that they would not sell it anymore, because no one but me buys it. So, yes, it’s rather difficult to be vegan in Russia…
That is a real shame 🙁 I hope things get easier!
Amazing photos from the cooking class. It really did look like an intimate and cosy family session as you described. Cooking with love – I suppose that means patience, going slow and handling the ingredients with care in the kitchen. I wish I had more time to cook delicious food like this but I don’t – if my parents don’t cook, then I will boil some chicken slices and vegies to eat plain 🙁
But back to positive thoughts. Very interesting kind of omelette with blocks of tofu. Tofu is quite a delicate kind of food, so I would have thought it would end up all crumbly with the egga and you won’t be able to see and taste it. Then again, I don’t cook that much. Thank you for such an delicious, inspiring post 🙂
Thank you so much Mabel! I’m glad you liked the photos and the post 🙂 cooking with love for me means thinking of the person you are making the meal for and sending love into the dish. Even if you are cooking for just you, add some self-love to the dish 🙂 It was different with the tofu but it tasted great and held together quite well! I hope you have a lovely birthday today! x
Very good cooking!
Thank you!! 🙂