Living with a family that is not vegan or gluten-free equates into endless questions about my diet – such as, Why can’t you eat this? What can you eat? Why is cooking for you so hard?
And on and on and on, particularly when the Movement Control Order (MCO) in Malaysia initially started and we were dining together every day as nobody was allowed to dine elsewhere.
I would always retort with, “It’s not difficult to cook for me…” and it’s a statement I stand by. Honestly speaking, I’m happy just devouring rice and vegetables (steamed, fried, deep-fried, whatever) but that’s probably because I’m Asian. So while yes, cooking the aforementioned dishes are the epitome of easy, so are the recipes I’m about to share with you!
The best part is that my top three go-to recipes are either gluten-free or don’t require gluten. If you’re not squealing like Jonah Hill in that infamous GIF from Get Him To The Greek then you’re probably not celiac or avoiding gluten for health related reasons. Regardless, if you’re still stuck at home due to Covid-19, like us in Malaysia, why not try something new? Something (gasp) gluten-free?
Not gonna lie, I miss eggs sometimes but with the invention of tofu scramble, the craving quickly dissipates – especially when recalling the treatment chickens receive just to produce eggs (all I’ll say is yikes!). If you’re sceptical, I get it but remember, this recipe is a homage to eggs; if it wasn’t it would be a scramble egg recipe after all.
1 Block of Regular Tofu
1 Teaspoon or Tablespoon of Turmeric – really depends on the strength of your turmeric
1 Heaping of Vegetables of Choice – I recommend onions, tomatoes, and chives (or any herb) to maintain that classic scramble feel
How To: Break the block of tofu in half then use a fork or spoon to mash the tofu into a ‘scrambled egg’ consistency. Doing this can become therapeutic so remember to stop before the tofu turns to actual mush and set it aside momentarily. Heat a pan of choice with an oil of choice then fry the onions briefly before adding the tofu, vegetables, and eventually, the turmeric.
Note: I can’t take credit for this recipe as Qi Gong with Kseny from YouTube inspired me so click through if you want to watch a short video tutorial or want to explore Qi Gong with her.
American Style Pancakes
A rather infamous recipe among the vegan community, whipping up these pancakes requires only three ingredients and zero whipping – literally. From the many websites and blogs to choose from, I opted to follow the step outlined by Sweet Simple Vegan. You can either click through or refer to the steps below:
3 Cups Gluten-Free Oats
2 Cups Nut or Soy Milk of Choice
2 Medium Spotty Bananas
How To: Blend oats into flour, mix ingredients together, then pour the batter onto a non-stick pan and voila!
Note: Sweet Simple Vegan recommends pouring 1/3 cup per pancake and adding additional ingredients of choice like chocolate chips, cinnamon, and more. You should definitely click through if you’re addicted to maple syrup and want to make your own to pour over these thick pancakes.
If you live in Malaysia, you’d know that when bliss balls (or protein balls, as its sometimes named) first appeared in restaurants the price was exorbitant; because of this, I averted the healthy snack-cum-dessert but after indulging in several varieties, knew I had to learn how to make energy bites (jeez, maybe there’s too many names for this one snack?). And guess what? It’s seriously simple!
1 Cup of Medjool Dates – for real, I tried another type and it wasn’t a bliss ball, just a brick ball
1 Teaspoon or Tablespoon of Cacao
1 Cup or Tablespoon of Nut(s) Of Choice
A Dash of Cinnamon, Chia Seeds, and whatever else or nothing else even
A Heaping of Desiccated Coconut
How To: After measuring the medjool dates, briefly blend the nuts if you’re opting for nuts – when I create chocolate flavoured bliss balls, I opt for hazelnuts FYI. Then, add the remaining ingredients into the blender and blend until malleable; basically, the consistency should be almost paste like but still dough-y so you can roll it into a ball.
Note: If you’re planning to create peanut butter bliss balls then please purchase organic peanut butter as when I used regular PB, I was scandalised by the amount of oil that appeared after blending (!!!). That aside, I read several recipes and just created my own version which I highly recommend as you know what you like best. If you prefer more guidance, browse through my favourite vegan blogs: Sweet Simple Vegan, Ela Vegan, or Minimalist Baker.
So there you have it, three easy vegan and gluten-free recipes to try during quarantine or whenever you need an immunity boost really! Each recipe listed above contains some type of essential vitamin(s) and in general, health benefits (think potassium from bananas, protein from tofu, antioxidants from dates etc.). To digress quickly, only the photo of the tofu scramble is mine as my phone broke days before the mandatory lockdown so I unfortunately couldn’t aesthetically photograph my vegan experimentations. Anyway, enjoy your cooking and share photos of your pretty creations by tagging me on Instagram at @raisareviews 🙂