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Veggie food... and you won't miss the meat; Here are some great recipes for a proper meat-free feast.

VEGETARIAN chef David Tomlinson has developed a reputation for producing innovative vegetarian and vegan food that blows away any preconceptions about meals without meat.

He has a gift for taking ordinary ingredients to create extraordinary dishes - as devotees of his renowned Penarth restaurant, Tomlins, well knew.

This veggie golden age came to an end when David moved to southern France to open a guesthouse and cookery school. Friend and restauranteur, Mike Caplan-Hill, who runs the Fig Tree in Penarth with his partner, Sandie Guppy, decided to introduce David to a new audience by giving him a guest chef slot at his own restaurant.

"David's food is exceptional, and even those who normally steer well clear of veggie food enjoy it. So often a vegetarian option on a menu is nothing more than a token option, which is frustrating. Sandie is vegetarian as she understands the tedium of only being offered omelette. And if you are vegan, the choices diminish still further," says Mike.

"By inviting him here, it will give vegetarians a treat, and also introduce meat eaters to inspired vegetarian food. As health wise, and environmentally, we should all be eating less meat, ideas for inspired meat-free meals will make that easier."

| Vegetarian Week at The Fig Tree Penarth runs from October 24-29. Call 029 2070 2512 or go to www.thefigtreepenarth.co.uk VEGAN CHOCOLATE MOUSSE Ingredients 180g aquafaba (egg white substitute) 1/4 tsp cream of tartar 180g dark chocolate 2 tbsp Agave syrup 1 tbsp coconut oil 1/2 tsp vanilla extract Vegan amaretti biscuit : 75g ground almond 75g caster sugar 3 tbsp aquafaba (egg white substitute) 1 tsp cognac or amaretto liqueur Almond praline: 100g toasted almond flakes 200ml water 50g caster sugar A little butter or oil for greasing Method Melt the chocolate, coconut oil and syrup in a bowl set over a pan of boiling water. When melted allow to cool, then put the aquafaba and cream of tartar into a clean, dry bowl and whisk to soft peaks.

Gently add the chocolate mix to the whipped aquafaba and fold in. Put some broken amaretti biscuits in the bottom of the dishes and drizzle with a little cognac or Amaretto. Cover with the chocolate mousse and refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.

For the biscuit, mix almonds with sugar. Whisk the egg white to firm peaks. Gently stir in the almonds and sugar and add the liqueur. Line a baking sheet with greaseproof paper and spoon the mixture onto the tray in little mounds. Bake in a medium oven for 15 minutes until golden.

To make the praline, grease a baking tray with the butter or oil and scatter over the flaked almonds. Put the sugar and water into a pan and gently heat until the sugar has dissolved. Continue to cook until a deep golden colour. Pour over the almonds to give a thin layer and set aside to set, then break up into shards.

BEETROOT AND ORANGE POLENTA CAKE Ingredients 200ml oil, 50/50 olive oil and sunflower oil 120ml agave syrup 2 tbsp ground mixed seeds (optional) 6 tbsp aquafaba (liquid from a can of white beans or chickpeas, as an egg white substitute) 200g ground almonds 1 tsp vanilla essence 1 medium beetroot, raw, peeled and grated Zest of two oranges Juice of an orange 175g polenta flour 21/2 tsp baking powder 1 orange, skinned and sliced Syrup: Zest and juice of an orange Zest and juice of an lemon 100g caster sugar 2 star anise (optional) Candied beetroot: 1 raw beetroot, peeled and very thinly sliced 3 tbsp agave syrup and 100ml water Method Preheat the oven to gas 3/160degC. Grease a 230mm loose-bottomed cake tin with a little oil and line with greaseproof paper. In a large bowl whisk the oil with the syrup and add the ground seeds and aquafaba and whisk again.

Mix all the dry ingredients together and gently add to the oil and syrup mix. Fold in to combine. Add the beetroot, zest and orange juice and stir in. Pour into the cake tin and place the orange slices around the top.

Sprinkle with a little golden caster sugar and bake for between 60 to 75 minutes until golden brown and a knife inserted comes out clean. Release the cake ring and allow to cool. Drizzle over the syrup and serve.

For the syrup, place the ingredients into a small pan and heat gently until all the sugar has dissolved. Turn up the heat and bring to the boil. Cook for three or four minutes until the syrup has thickened (and coats the back of a spoon). Turn off and cool. Remove the star anise before serving.

To make the candied beetroot - in a small pan heat the syrup and water. Once boiling, add the beetroot slices and simmer for 15 minutes. Line a baking tray with greaseproof paper and brush with a little oil. Heat the oven to 120degC/Gas 1. Place the cooked slices on to the baking tray being careful not to overlap. Bake for an hour turning once after 30 minutes. Allow to cool and crisp. Keep the syrup for garnishing the plate.

PATATAS BRAVAS Ingredients 4 large potatoes, peeled and quartered Salt 4tbsp vegetable oil for roasting 4 tbsp olive oil 1 tbsp tomato puree 1/2 tsp mustard 1/2 tsp Tabasco 1 tsp paprika A little water Alioli: 4 cloves garlic, mashed to a paste 6tbsp aquafaba (egg white substitute) 2 tsp English mustard 1 tsp cider vinegar or lemon juice 1/2 tsp turmeric (optional for colour) 150 ml Olive oil/vegetable oil 50/50 Method Cook the potatoes in some lightly-salted boiling water for five minutes and drain. Put the vegetable oil in an ovenproof dish and put in a pre-heated oven 180degC/Gas 4 for 10 minutes.

Add the par-boiled potatoes and bake for around 30 minutes until golden. In a small bowl add the rest of the ingredients and mix to give a smooth sauce. When the potatoes are cooked, drain and add to the sauce or serve in separate bowls.

Make the alioli in a food processor - blend the garlic, aquafaba, mustard, vinegar, turmeric (if using) and some salt and then slowly, with the machine still running, drizzle in the oil until the alioli is to the required thickness.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Article Type:Recipe
Date:Oct 22, 2016
Words:1062
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