November was a bad month in fitness for me – in my defence we did spend a week of this away with no access to a gym, and early morning starts. On top of this, it was a very wet and cold month – waking up in the morning feeling cold is not a motivator for me!
In an attempt to make December better, I will be using the treadmill a lot more now. I did do a 6km run on the treadmill a couple of days ago.
November 2022 stats
I worked out 10 days, a total of just 4 hours of workouts.
Preheat your oven to 220°C/200°C fan/gas mark 7. Boil a full kettle of water. Peel the potato and chop into 2cm chunks. Peel the sweet potato and chop into 1cm chunks. Pour the boiled water into a saucepan with ½ tsp salt and heat on high. Once boiling, add the potato and sweet potato, then simmer until soft, 12 mins.
Meanwhile, roughly chop the chestnut mushrooms into a small pieces (use a food processor if you have one). Peel and finely chop the garlic (or use a garlic press). Trim the root and the dark green leafy part from the leek, halve lengthways, then thinly slice. Roughly chop the chives. In a small bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, half of the chives and 1tbsp olive oil, and season with salt and pepper.
Place a large frying pan on medium-high heat with a drizzle of oil. When hot, add the chestnut mushrooms and leek and cook until softened, 3 mins. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 min. Pour in the passata, red wine stock and mushroom broth paste. Stir to dissolve the stock, then simmer until thickened, 5 mins. Season with salt and pepper.
When the potatoes have finished cooking, drain in a colander and return to the pan. Add 20g plant-based spread, then mash until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer the mushroom mixture to a deep ovenproof dish (or use two for easier serving). Top with the mash, ensuring it covers the mixture. Run a fork across the mash to make lines across the top, then sprinkle with the herby breadcrumbs. Bake on the top shelf, 12 mins.
Wash the saucepan used for the potatoes. When the pie has 5 mins remaining, boil a half-full kettle. Pour the boiled water into the saucepan used for the potato with ¼ tsp salt and heat on high. When boiling, add the peas to the water and cook for 3 mins. Drain in a colander and return to the pan. Drizzle with oil and, if you’d like to, season with salt and pepper.
Divide the vegan mushroom cottage pie between your plates. Serve with the peas and sprinkle with the remaining chives.
For more protein, and to make a larger pie, try adding cooked lentils to the mushroom mixture.
Preheat the oven to 240°C / 220°C (fan), and boil a kettle.
Peel and finely chop or grate the garlic. Grate the vegan cheese (or buy it already grated!), finely chop the basil, including stalks.
Add the pasta to a pot of boiled water with a pinch of salt, bring to the boil over a high heat and cook for 10 minutes (or follow instructions on the packet) until cooked with a slight bite. Once cooked, drain the pasta and set aside.
While the pasta is cooking, chop the courgette into quarters lengthways, then slice finely.
Heat a large pan with a drizzle of olive oil over a medium-high heat, and reboil a kettle (100ml)
Once the pan is hot, add the sliced courgette with a pinch of salt and cook for 4 mins or until beginning to soften.
Meanwhile, disolve the stock cube, dried basil, balsamic vinegar, tomato paste and 1 tsp sugar in 100ml boiled water – this is your stock.
Cut the cherry tomatoes in half – or if you’re using whole tomatoes, cut into pieces.
Once the courgette is beginning to soften, add the chopped garlic to the pan and cook for 30 seconds. Next, add the stock, the halved cherry tomatoes, and finely chopped tomatoes, and bring to the boil over a high heat. Season with a pinch of salt and a generous grind of black pepper and cook for 4 minutes further.
Add the drained pasta to the sauce with some chopped basil (save some for garnish!) and mix it up.
Add half the pasta to an oven-proof dish, and top with half the grated cheese. Add the remaining pasta on top, along with the rest of the vegan cheese and put the tray in the oven for 10 minutes.
Serve, with extra chopped basil and black pepper on top!
Instead of normal pasta I like to use protein-packed pea pasta, like the ones from ZenB. It’s also gluten free!
Because of the many different types of pasta and vegan cheese, I haven’t added calorie or macros for this recipe.
If you’re a fan of Nutritional Yeast (nooch!), add this to the top before baking for extra crispy and cheesiness!
100g Brown Basmati Rice (or you can use microwave rice)
7g Medium Curry Powder
25g Cashew Nuts
2 Garlic cloves
1 Green Chilli
15g Ginger Puree
30g Tomato Puree
200ml Coconut milk
10g Vegetable Stock paste / stock cube
80g Natural Coconut Milk Yoghurt
Preheat your oven to 220°C / 200°C fan / gas mark 7 (or you can use an air fryer!) Boil a kettle if you are boiling rice (or you can use microwave rice!)
If cooking dried rice, rinse the brown rice, and pour 300ml of boiled water into a medium pan with 1/4 tsp of salt, and bring back to the boil on high heat. Add the rice, then reduce the heat to low. Cover with a tight-fitting lid and cook for 20 minutes, before draining into a sieve.
Alternatively, you can use microwave rice!
While the rice cooks, cut the cauliflower into florets, halving any large ones.
If you are cooking in the oven, put the cauliflower florets onto a baking tray, then drizzle with oil and sprinkle with half of the medium curry powder (3.5g). Season with salt and pepper and toss to coat. Spread out in a single layer. When the oven is hot, roast on the top shelf until golden brown and tender, 15-20 mins. Turn halfway through.
Alternatively if you are using an air fryer, put the cauliflower florets into the air fryer, drizzle with oil and sprinkle with half of the medium curry powder (3.5g). Season with salt and pepper and toss to coat. Spread out in a single layer. Fry until cooked, please check the instructions but it should take about 10 mins, toss halfway through.
In the meantime, heat a large frying pan on medium heat (no oil). When hot, add the cashews and dry-fry until toasted, 2-3 mins. Transfer to a bowl. Once cooled, roughly chop. Meanwhile, peel and grate the garlic (or use a garlic press).
Halve the green chilli lengthways, deseed, then thinly slice. Put the frying pan just used back on medium heat with a drizzle of oil. Add the garlic, ginger puree, remaining medium curry powder, and half of the chilli to the pan. Cook until fragrant, 2-3 mins.
Stir in the tomato puree, coconut milk, veg stock and 100ml water. Simmer on medium-low, stirring occasionally, for 2-3 mins. Season with salt and pepper. Once the cauliflower has roasted, stir it and the peas through your curry, then cook for 2-3 mins. Finally, stir in half of the cashew nuts.
Serve your cauliflower & cashew nut curry on a bed of brown basmati rice. Sprinkle with the remaining cashew nuts and chilli and finish with a spoonful of coconut milk yoghurt.
October was an average month for me in fitness – I blame the colder weather, it really demotivates me! Although once I’m out there running, the cold weather actually helps me go further and faster – I broke my distance record this month.
October 2022 stats
I worked out 14 days. That’s 11 hours of workouts! Mostly walking, I went 41.8km, and did my longest run of 8km without stopping or slowing down 🔥
Just a little post to say that if you can spare it, please support Mastodon on Patreon, as they don’t have any advertising and need to pay to keep the servers up! I just pledged – I hope lots more people can too!