Recipe Competition

The winning entry in my recent readers’ recipe competition was… drumroll please…

From Phyllis in Arizona, USA.

Chickpea and Vegetable Curry with Banana


1 onion, finely sliced
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tsp grated ginger
1 tbsp curry powder
2 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
½ tsp each ground turmeric & cinnamon
2 ripe tomatoes, diced



Sauté the onion, garlic and ginger in a little water, in a non-stick saucepan for about 10 minutes, adding more water if required to avoid sticking. Add spices and tomatoes and stir well.

Add the stock and chickpeas, cover and simmer gently for 15 minutes. Stir in the butternut pumpkin, cover and cook for a further 15 minutes until pumpkin is tender.

Peel and thickly slice the banana and add to the pan with the coriander and cook for a further 5 minutes.

Serve with some long grain brown rice – put the brown rice in a saucepan with twice as much water as rice, bring to the boil and simmer for 30 minutes. (To add to the green vegie content of this dish, I added a 250 g pack of frozen chopped spinach to the saucepan of rice 10 minutes into cooking, stirring it into the rice well once the rice was cooked.)


All the rest deserve very honourable mentions – thanks to all of you who submitted recipes!

From Janet, in Adelaide.

Janet’s Lovely Lentil Burgers


1 cup lentils – red, green or brown
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon coriander
Freshly ground pepper



Cook lentils in 2 cups water until tender (25 mins for red lentils; up to 50 mins for green or brown), allowing most of water to evaporate so that you have a thick pulpy mass. (I used black beluga lentils which don’t turn to mush, so I pulsed them in the food processor with the vegetable mix, once it was cooked.)

Sauté onion and garlic in a a little water, in a non-stick frying pan, adding more water as necessary to prevent sticking. Add spices, carrot and peas and a little more water, cooking until carrot is soft.

Stir nuts, parsley and breadcrumbs into lentils then add onion mixture and stir well. Allow to cool.

Roll tablespoons of mixture into balls, then flatten and roll in flour or polenta. Cook in a non-stick frypan with a light coating of olive oil, or bake on non-stick baking paper in a moderate oven for 10 minutes, then flip and bake for a further 10 minutes. Serve with salad.


From Kate, in Wollongong. Kate is 17 and went vegan recently.

Kate’s Yummy Fruit Crumble


1× 400 g tin of baker’s apples or apricot halves (I used tinned pears in natural juice, roughly diced)
½-1 cup of fresh or frozen berries of any sort (I used a combination of blueberries and boysenberries); allow frozen berries to defrost slightly
100 g of mixed nuts and seeds e.g. raw walnuts, almonds, sesame seeds, pepitas, brazil nuts
Flaked almonds



Gently mix apple and berries together and place in a small oven proof dish. Chop nuts finely then mix with seeds and sprinkle over top; top with flaked almonds. Place in 160°C oven for about 15-20 minutes, covering top with foil if it starts to brown too much.


From Eve, in Sydney.

Spicy Lentil Burgers


1.5 cups cooked brown lentils
3 tsp No Egg or other egg replacer (I used tahini instead)
¼ – 1 onion (to taste) finely chopped
1 clove garlic (crushed)
½ tsp ginger powder
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp cumin



Mix egg replacer (if using) 4 tbsp of water until it forms a paste. Combine lentils, egg replacer mixture or tahini, onion, garlic, spices, lemon juice and tomato paste in a food processor and pulse until the ingredients are evenly distributed but still slightly lumpy.

Mix the breadcrumbs in by hand, adding more if necessary so that mixture holds together well. Shape the mixture into patties and coat with flour. Fry patties in a non-stick frypan with a light coating of olive oil until golden brown, or bake on non-stick baking paper in a moderate oven for 10 minutes, then flip and bake for a further 10 minutes. Serve with salad.


From Kate and Deb, in Wollongong.

Yugoslavian Style Casserole


1 zucchini cut in approximately 1 cm slices
1 small onion, sliced thinly
200 g firm tofu cut in 1 cm slices
Freshly ground pepper (to taste)
Chilli flakes ground (to taste)
Dried garlic (to taste)
Approximately 2 tbsp of rice bran or olive oil
1 carrot, peeled and sliced thinly
100 g Shitake mushrooms (I used dried ones, soaked for 10 minutes in boiling water)
120 g green beans, chopped into small pieces
½ green capsicum, sliced in rings
½ red capsicum, sliced in rings
2 tomatoes cut into 1 cm slices
1 cup of cooked brown rice
Paprika (to taste)



Place zucchini in an un-greased casserole dish.

Heat oil in frying pan and season tofu with pepper, chilli and garlic on one side only. Sauté tofu, placing seasoned side of tofu down, and season other side while it’s cooking. Cook until lightly brown on both sides.

Sauté onion until soft. Gently layer tofu and then onion on top of zucchini in casserole dish. Layer green beans, carrots, capsicum and tomato in casserole dish, cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes in a 180°C oven (or until veggies are soft). Remove foil and sprinkle rice and paprika over the top and bake for another 10-15 mins.

Serve with a fresh green salad.


From Sue of Arete Wholefoods in Caringbah.

Arete Raw Chocolate Mousse


1 cup young coconut water, or rice milk
1/2 cup cacao (raw cocoa) powder
1/4 cup almond butter
3/4 cup pitted Medjool dates, soaked in hot water
1 ripe avocado



Blend in food processor until smooth. Freeze for 1-2 hours before serving.


From Paula, in Maitland.

Paula’s Shepherd’s Pie


1 cup brown lentils
1 tomato
1 onion
2 cloves garlic
1 chilli
Fresh ginger to taste
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 tsp tumeric
1 tsp cumin
Handful of fresh chopped parsley or coriander
1 medium sweet potato
Coconut or rice milk
1/2 cup water or vegetable stock



Soak lentils overnight, next day rinse well and set aside.

Chop tomato and onion. Mince chilli, garlic and ginger. Cook tomato, onion, garlic and ginger over moderate heat until onion is soft.

Add cumin and tumeric, stir for a minute, then add lentils, tomato paste and 2 cups water. Bring to the boil, then cover and simmer on low heat for 45 minutes. Remove from heat, leave for 15 minutes, then add chopped fresh herbs.

Meanwhile, peel sweet potato, chop into small pieces and steam until soft. Drain and mash with enough coconut or rice milk to make a firm mash.

Put lentil mix into a loaf dish, cover with mash and place under a preheated grill until mashed has browned lightly. Serve with steamed greens.


From Nicole, in Helensburgh.

Nicky’s Spicy Lentil Vegie Stew


1 large brown onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 tsp crushed chilli flakes or minced fresh chilli (optional)
1 tsp curry powder (or more to taste)
1/2 tsp fresh grated ginger
400 g can chopped tomatoes
3 cups vegetable stock *
400 g can brown lentils, drained and well rinsed, 1 1/2 cups cooked brown lentils
1 carrot, diced
1/2 red capsicum, diced
1 stalk celery, diced
1 zucchini, chopped
1/4 cabbage, finely shredded
6 button mushrooms, sliced
1/2 bunch kale (or spinach), chopped
1 cup broccoli, cut into small pieces



In a large pot soften onion, garlic, chilli, curry powder and ginger with 1/2 cup stock for 2 minutes. Add carrot, capsicum and celery and also soften for a few minutes. Add rest of stock, tomatoes, zucchini, cabbage, mushrooms and lentils.

Bring to the boil and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add broccoli and kale, and simmer for a further 10 minutes.

* You can add more stock to make it more like a soup than a stew.


From Bonni, in Sydney

Kidney Bean & Mushroom Burgers


1 onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp tumeric
1 cup chopped mushrooms
1 400g can kidney beans or 1 1/2 cup cooked kidney beans
2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
Wholemeal flour

In a non-stick frying pan, sauté onion and garlic in a little water until soft, adding more water if necessary to avoid sticking. Add spices and cook for 1 minute. Add mushrooms and cook until softened.

Drain and mash kidney beans and add when mushrooms are cooked. Stir in coriander.

Dust hands with wholemeal flour, roll mixture into 4 burgers, flatten and grill for about 10 mins. Serve with salad.

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