Saturday, July 14, 2012

Weekend Cooking: VeggieChallenge Week 2

As I told in my starting post, I will be participating in the VeggieChallenge. This is a Dutch initiative to make people aware and challenge them to consume less meat, fish and animal products for a month. People are allowed to set their own challenge. Like going meatless for 1 day a week, or for the whole week, it is all possible. Because I already eat vegetarian most of the time, I decided to challenge myself to eat vegan for 2 days a week in July. Last week I already posted about my first week. Of course now it is time for my second week!

My two vegan days in the past week were Monday and Tuesday and this is what I ate:
Breakfast: Vegan bread with dark chocolate sprinkles
Lunch: Vegan bread with cucumber spread and garden cress. This was very tasty!
Dinner: Vegan Friendly Vegetable Stew
Snacks: Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies (LU Robuuste koeken), Toastie with tomato spread, mushrooms and Italian herbs. (needs tweaking)

Breakfast: Vegan bread with cucumber spread and garden cress.
Lunch: Vegan bread with cucumber spread and garden cress. (yeah, I don't want to waste stuff)
Dinner: Pasta with walnut-pesto, mushrooms and sundried tomatoes
Snacks: Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies (LU Robuuste koeken)

The recipe for the cucumber spread is so easy and really good! It tastes fresh without it being too mushy and so much better than the non-vegan store bought cucumber spreads. This recipe is a keeper! The original I got from, but because it is in Dutch I will translate it here.

Cucumber Spread: (serves 6)
- 1 cucumber
- juice of 1 lemon
- 130gr non salted cashews
- 1 tbsp fresh dill or 1tsp dried
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 clove of garlic
- 1-2 tbsp olive oil
- sea salt and pepper

First grate the cucumber. I did this in my food processor because it has an option for that, but it can also be done by hand. Press the moist out of the cucumber in a colander with kitchen towels. Then pile in the food processor about half of the grated cucumber and the rest of the ingredients. Just use a dash of salt and pepper. Let the kitchen machine do the work until you get a nice looking spread. Scoop the spread in a bowl and mix the rest of the cucumber in. Enjoy on bread, crackers, toast or even on a bagel!

Walnut Pesto: (serves 4) from Ecofabulous koken in alle seizoenen
- 150gr walnuts
- 1 clove garlic
- handful of fresh basil (or more to taste)
- olive oil
- sea salt

Just put everything in the food processor and add olive oil gradually. It is really a taste thing. I added more basil because I thought the walnut taste was a bit too present compared to the rest. I also added the sundried tomatoes directly to the pesto, this was lovely. So it is really process and taste thing. Serve on top of pasta, on a sammy or however you like.

Things I encountered:
- This week was more easy because I was more prepared.
- I solved my toastie problem. My best success was the leftover "Fish Flavoured" Eggplant on a toastie. The pizza toastie was okay but needs tweaking.
- I am so grateful for those vegan chocolate chip cookies. They are awesome and available in every supermarket.
- Making your own spreads is fun!
- Keeping it simple is the key to success

For next week I plan to make my own Tofu loaf inspired by Gnoe. And I want to take on the challenge of vegan baking. I can do this because we are going out for dinner on one of my vegan days just so I can experience that as well.

This post is part of Weekend Cooking. Please check out the other participants for foodie inspiration!


  1. Thanks for sharing your Vegan experience. I have a few friends who changed their diets and began eating Vegan recently. The cucumber spread looks delicious!
    Rebecca @ The Key to the Gate

  2. Your cucumber spread looks and sounds delicious! And the fact that you ate it for three meals makes me want to whip up a batch. Thanks for sharing!

  3. The cucumber spread sounds delightful!

    Here's my first ever
    Weekend Cooking: Paris in July.
    Hope you will stop by!

  4. That cucumber spread sounds nice. Have a lovely week.

  5. Glad this week went easier for you. And I am going to try that cucumber spread. It sounds like a great lunch idea. The pesto looks good too.

    Sorry it took me so long to visit your post. We were out of town and didn't have Internet access.

  6. Wow! This sounds really good - thanks!