August 25, 2016 0

Vegan Nail Extensions by Bio Sculpture

Price: From $50.00 AUD

Where to Get It: www.biosculpture.com.au

I’ma be straight up and say that my nails usually look ratchet and that’s mainly because I don’t treat ’em right. Years of biting my nails and cuticles have left them hella weak, brittle and short AF. When they’re short I don’t feel like painting them but painting them is the only way I can grow them, it’s a vicious cycle. Don’t believe me? Check out what my nails usually look like…

EVO Glueless Tips

I know, right? The thing is that I actually really love nail polish, so it sucks that I rarely have nails to paint. Like many of you, I’ve trawled the internet for vegan nail extensions but it’s so bloody hard to find a definitive answer, let alone a salon in my area with vegan-friendly polishes to round out the process, so I was pumped when The Nail Lounge in Sydney invited me to try their Bio Sculpture EVO Glueless Gel Tips.

The EVO Glueless Tip process is brand spankin’ new so I’m one of the first to get to try it out before it gets rolled out to other Bio Sculpture salons across the country. Unlike regular acrylics, the insanely strong EVO Oxygenating Base is used to adhere the acrylic tips instead of glue. Why is that so dope? Well, as you can imagine glueing stuff to your body doesn’t sound super chill and often leaves the nails damaged underneath. EVO’s Oxygenating base makes your nails healthier by regulating moisture and treating your nails to vitamins a and e in the process. Bio Sculpture’s EVO range is completely vegan and even medical grade!

EVO Glueless Tips

My nail technician finished off my look using Bio Sculpture Gel which of course is also vegan but also chip-free and freaking 5 star safety rated (that’s the highest you can get!) Like EVO, it cares for your nails while you wear it so you can feel even better about treating yourself to that mani. There’s not a lot these guys could do to make my hands not look like those of an 80 year old (srsly, why so wrinkly) but would you just check out the miracle they worked on my nails?! The only small neg is that one fell off about week after having them done, however I am going to chalk it up to the fact my pinky nail was so tiny to begin with, there wasn’t a lot to adhere to so I would fo sho go get this done again. I mean, just look at them…

EVO Glueless Tips

The Nail Lounge’s facilities are super clean and profesh looking which gave me the confidence that I wasn’t going to end up on a Today Tonight exposé of shonky salons. The staff are friendly, knowledgeable and most importantly provide a kick-ass service so you know you’re getting treated right. They are a specialised Bio Sculpture salon so they know the products inside and out, pioneering the EVO Glueless Tip process.

EVO Glueless Tips

Services typically start at around $50 for a gel manicure and when the service is rolled out, around $90 for the EVO Glueless Tips. I know what you’re thinking and no, you don’t have to travel all the way to Surry Hills to get your nails did, check out the Bio Sculpture website and find a salon using Bio Sculpture products in your area!

August 17, 2016 2

Banana Choc Chip Cashew Ice Cream

Difficulty: Easy

Serves 4

Cashew Banana Ice Cream

If you managed to wrap your head around that bitch of a recipe title, wait til you wrap your mouth around what the recipe makes! The cashew base makes it soy free and when you throw in that banana and choc chip combo, Craig David wouldn’t be able to handle all that flavour. Now, I’ve been trying to chill a little on the sugar lately (dw fam, I’m not gonna go all IQS on your asses) so I sweetened this guy with stevia which you can tastea little bit, but feel free to use agave or maple syrup if it’s more your jam.

Hint: Make sure you leave plenty of time to cool the cashews!

Cashew Banana Ice Cream

Ingredients

  • 2 cups raw cashews
  • 1 1/3 cups nut milk (I used a cashew and almond blend)
  • 2-3 tablespoons natural banana extract
  • Liquid stevia (enough to your liking)
  • 1/2 cup vegan chocolate chips

Cashew Banana Ice Cream

Method

  1. Chuck the cashews in the saucepan and cover with water, bringing to the boil and keeping things going for about 20 minutes til they’re hella soft.
  2. Drain the cashews well before popping in a container and allowing to cool completely.
  3. Once cool, throw them in the blender and gradually turn the dial up to maximum blendage.
  4. Slowly pour in the nut milk and blend until the mixture is smooth AF, then add the banana extract and sweetener of your choice.
  5. Add the mixture to your ice cream maker and freeze according to the instructions, adding the chocolate chips just towards the end of the process (if you don’t have an ice cream maker it should still work, just fold in the choc chips).
  6. Scrape the mixture out into a freezer-safe vessel and freeze until firm.
  7. Remove a short time before you’re ready to serve to allow the mixture to soften to a good consistency.

Cashew Banana Ice Cream

Tried this recipe or have a suggestion for another ice cream flavour you’d like a recipe for? Hit me up in the comments below!

August 8, 2016 1

Apple Pie Granola

Difficulty: Easy

Makes 4 cups

Apple Pie Granola

Crunchy granola is just about the only cereal-type thing you’ll get me near. When you add all the bits and pieces to make the damned thing taste like apple pie, well dayaaamn you’ve got me hooked! Easy enough to quickly whip up on Sunday for the week ahead but let’s be honest, it ain’t going to last beyond Tuesday (if that). If you had signed up to my newsletter you could have been making this for months now, don’t make the same mistake again by signing up here.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup raw almonds
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • 1/2 cup raw macadamias
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 green apple
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup sultanas

Apple Pie Granola

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 160°C and line two baking trays with baking paper.
  2. Chuck the rolled oats into a large bowl and roughly chop the nuts before throwing them in too.
  3. Sprinkle with cinnamon and nutmeg and stir through the mixture.
  4. Dice the apple into half centimetre cubes and throw into the bowl.
  5. Melt together the coconut oil and maple syrup either on the stove or in the microwave.
  6. Pour the liquid over the oat and nut mixture and mix thoroughly until well combined.
  7. Spread the mixture out evenly across the two trays, leaving bits a little clumped if you want some crunchy clusters.
  8. Bake in the oven for 45 minutes, gently tossing the mixture with tongs every 10 minutes or so.
  9. Remove from the oven and sprinkle the sultanas over the mixture before allowing to cool completely.
  10. Keep in a jar until ready to eat.

Apple Pie Granola

August 3, 2016 0

Treat Yo’self to Kester Black’s Summer Shades

Price: $20 AUD

Where to Buy: www.kesterblack.com

It may not seem like it with this frosty air but summer will be here before we know it and if you’re like me, winter can be a time where you kinda shrug off some of the fun beauty stuff for more important regimes like making sure your skin doesn’t dry out to some scaly, lizard-like thing.

Kester Black

Nothing kicks you back into gear more quickly than a bright new set of nail colours so when Kester Black sent me their new summer range to review I felt inspired to stop biting my fingers for a little minute and prep them for a makeover. You’ll have a bunch to choose from too, with 4 new shades ripe and ready for paintin’.

Kester Black

Take the colour of the sea with you wherever you go with Terrarium, the ultimate bright aqua to add the perfect pop of colour to your summer look. If the blue/green tones are your thing but you want to tone it down a little, you’ll bloody love Cumulus, a light and powdery blue to help cool you down when the heat is too much to bear. And what would summer be without a neon pink, huh? Barbie is just that, bright and bold for a powerful statement nail. Last but not least, I have to say my pick of the bunch is Blossom cos it’s hella pastel pink perfection in a bottle. I’m wearing it right now!

Kester Black

The thing I love most about Kester Black (okay, second most because their products are number 1) is that they’re committed to ethical beauty. Polishes are water permeable and five-free, meaning they don’t contain any weird junk that harms you or our environment and sustainable production methods like using recyclable materials and small batch manufacturing mean you’re not only getting quality stuff but you’re also being kinder to the planet while looking super duper fly. And of course Kester Black products are completely vegan and accredited by Choose Cruelty Free, Cruelty Free International and the Vegan Society. Pretty cool, huh?

So, if the cooler weather has left your nails feeling a little neglected, pick your fave shade (or two) and get paintin’!

Kester Black

Wanna win some Kester Black nail polish? Be sure to head on over to Instagram and enter Like a Vegan’s 6th Birthday ExtraVeganza for a chance at winning over $500 worth of vegan prizes!

August 1, 2016 2

Like a Vegan is Six!

Awww my little blog is growing up! Six years ago this month I started Like a Vegan as a virtual cookbook to share recipes with my friends. Nowadays I still share my recipes but a whole bunch of other things too, with tens of thousands of pals from my real life and the WWW. Hey, it ain’t the biggest following in the world by any means but it still means a hell of a lot to me that y’all give a damn about what I’m doing and I appreciate every last one of you.

To celebrate this milestone, I’ve got a couple of surprises lined up but the biggest one by far is my 6th Birthday ExtraVeganza! Thanks to a bunch of my fave brands, I get to thank you for your ongoing support with a huge-ass giveaway and the major prize is worth over $500 and includes more stuff than I can fit in this picture:

Giveaway

There’s also a runner up prize worth over $170:

Because postage costs are a biatch I unfortunately have to limit this to Australian residents only but there will be a special little giveaway for my international friends as well so stay tuned. So, what are you waiting for? Head on over to Instagram now to find out how you can score this super fly prize.

Giveaway

Here’s to the animals, tasty food, awesome vegan products and many more years of Like a Vegan!

July 25, 2016 0

Cherry Banana Smoothie

Difficulty: Easy

Makes 1 large smoothie or 2 small smoothies

Cherry Banana Smoothie

So smooth that Rob Thomas and Santana wrote a song about it. If you pay attention to my Instagram, you’ll know that recently I made the best smoothie of my life. It seems like a pretty big call, and it is, especially for someone who ain’t too fussed on smoothies in the first place. The best thing about it? It takes a few minutes to throw together and all of the ingredients are things you should already have lying around.

Ingredients

  • 1 large banana
  • 10 fresh cherries
  • 1/2 cup crushed ice
  • 1 1/2 cups soy milk
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup coconut yoghurt (I used Nudie Vanilla Coconut ‘cos it’s vegan now!)

Cherry Banana Smoothie

Method

  1. Rip up the banana and chuck it into the blender.
  2. Remove the stems and pits from the cherries and throw them in too.
  3. Add the ice, soy milk, maple syrup and coconut yoghurt before blending until nice and smooth.
  4. Pour into glasses and serve immediately.

Cherry Banana Smoothie

July 18, 2016 1

Treat Yo’Self to Apple & Cinnamon Poptarts

Difficulty: Medium

Makes 12

Poptarts

Growing up there were 3 ultimate breakfast scenarios; going out for breakfast, being allowed sugary cereal out of one of those tiny boxes, and Poptarts. You know, those little pastry things that were filled with delicious unhealthy stuff and covered in the most delicious frosting known to man-kind? Now you can make your very own vegan version that tastes like tiny little apple pies. Now that’s an ultimate breakfast scenario.

Ingredients

Pastry

  • 2 1/2 cups plain flour
  • 1/2 cup caster sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 1/2 cups vegan margarine
  • 1/3 cup chilled water

Filling

  • 2 tablespoons vegan margarine
  • 4 green apples, peeled and diced into 1cm cubes
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 4 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup almond milk

Frosting

  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • 1/2 tablespoon cornflour
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons almond milk

Poptarts

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C and line two baking sheets with baking paper.
  2. In a food processor, process the flour, sugar, salt and vegan margarine until it resembles breadcrumbs.
  3. Add the chilled water gradually as you may not need it all, stop when the dough forms.
  4. Tip out onto a lightly floured bench and bring it together before wrapping in cling wrap and place in the fridge for 15 minutes.
  5. While the pastry is chilling, make your filling by melting the margarine in a medium-sized saucepan before adding the apple, brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg.
  6. Continue to stir on medium heat until the apple is 3/4 of the way cooked. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  7. Grab the pastry from the fridge and roll out to a .5cm thick rectangle on a lightly floured surface.
  8. Cut the pastry into 24 8cm x 12cm rectangles, rolling again if necessary.
  9. Space 6 rectangles out on each baking tray, dipping your finger in the almond milk and running it around the perimeter of each rectangle.
  10. Spoon about 2 tablespoons of filling to the middle of the pastry, leaving about .5cm between the perimeter where the milk was added and the filling.
  11. Lay the remaining pastry rectangles on top of the filled pieces, pressing around the edges with a fork to seal.
  12. Pierce the pastries several times with a fork and brush almond milk over each one before baking for 15-20 minutes (or until golden).
  13. Remove from the oven and place onto cooling racks to cool as desired. You can serve them hot or cold however the icing will not set completely if you choose to serve hot.
  14. While the Poptarts are cooling, prepare the frosting by sifting together the icing sugar and corn flour.
  15. Slowly whisk in the almond milk and vanilla until well combined.
  16. Place the frosting in a piping bag and drizzle over the Poptarts and set aside until the frosting has set.

Poptarts

July 11, 2016 4

The BEST Creamy Mushroom Tagliatelle

Method: Easy-Medium

Serves 4

Sometimes (AKA all the time) you’ve gotta give your body what it asks for and this weekend my body was begging me for pasta. Not just any kind of pasta, oh no, creamy mushroom tagliatelle; packed with flavour thanks to the roasted garlic and porcini powder, plus with the cashews and soy milk you’ve got maximum creamth (there I go with that word again). I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that this is probs the best pasta sauce I’ve ever had.

Note: Use GF pasta and you’ve got yourself one helluva gluten free pasta dish, my friends!

Ingredients

Creamy Sauce

  • 2 cups raw cashews
  • 3 cups button mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 5 large garlic cloves
  • Spray olive oil
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried porcini powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/4-1 1/2 cups soy milk

Other Ingredients

  • 500g tagliatelle pasta (or spaghetti)
  • Fresh parsley

Creamy Mushroom Tagliatelle

Method

  1. In a large saucepan, cover the cashews with water and bring to the boil.
  2. Next, preheat the oven to 180°C and line a baking tray with baking paper.
  3. While the cashews are boiling, spread the mushroom slices over the tray and add the whole garlic cloves (no need to peel). Spray with olive oil and bake in the oven for 30 minutes until mushrooms are well cooked.
  4. After the cashews have boiled for half an hour, drain well and then throw into a blender with the nutritional yeast, garlic powder, onion powder, porcini powder, white pepper and olive oil.
  5. Squeeze the gooey garlic out of its skin and add to the blender as well.
  6. Begin to blend and gradually pour in half of the soy milk. Keep blending on high and adding the soy milk until you have a smooth, creamy sauce.
  7. Cook the tagliatelle as per packet instructions and then drain well.
  8. Return the pasta to the empty saucepan and pour in the sauce, stirring with tongs until the tagliatelle is coated well.
  9. Sprinkle with the warm mushroom slices and fresh parsley.
  10. Serve immediately.

Creamy Mushroom Tagliatelle

 

July 4, 2016 4

Jam Filled Donuts

Difficulty: Medium

Makes 12

Jam Filled Donuts

If you ask me what my fave sweet treats are you’re going to hear two things: ice cream and donuts. I don’t have much of a sweet tooth but put either one of those in front of me and I’ll polish it off quick smart. Making badass doughies is one of my fave things to do, espesh because vegan donuts are bloody hard to come by in Newcastle, and I decided to stuff ’em full of sweet sweet raspberry jam.

Ingredients

  • 6 tablespoons warm water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup soy milk
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons vegan margarine, melted
  • 2 cups plain flour (plus extra for dusting)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup and 2 tablespoons caster sugar
  • Oil for frying
  • 1 jar raspberry jam for filling

Jam Filled Donuts

Method

  1. Chuck the warm water in a cup and sprinkle the dry yeast on top. Set aside.
  2. Whisk together the soy milk and apple cider vinegar. Also set aside.
  3. Sift the flour into the bowl of your electric mixture, followed by the salt and 2 tablespoons of caster sugar.
  4. Create a well in the centre of the dry ingredient and pour in the yeast mixture, milk mixture and melted margarine.
  5. Using dough hooks, mix the ingredients until a good dough is formed and a little extra mixing for good measure.
  6. Tip out onto a floured surface and knead into a smooth ball.
  7. Grease the inside of a large clean bowl with olive oil and plop the dough in.
  8. Cover with cling wrap and set aside until doubled in size, this can take a while especially when it’s cold. Find somewhere warm (I sat mine on a table in the same room as our heater).
  9. Tip the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and again knead into a smooth ball.
  10. Divide the dough into 12 even pieces. before rolling each piece into a ball and placing onto a baking tray lined with baking paper.
  11. Cover the trays with tea towels and set aside until also doubled in size.
  12. Heat the oil on the high side of medium in a large frypan or saucepan.
  13. Once the donuts have doubled in size, gently tip one into the oil. After about 2 minutes, gently turn over and cook for a further 2 minutes. If the first one cooks too fast, lower the heat of the oil.
  14. Do this with a few donuts at a time but be careful not to overcrowd the oil.
  15. Place each one on paper towel to absorb any excess oil before rolling in the remaining caster sugar.
  16. Warm the jam in the microwave or on the stove before using a piping bag or filling gadget to inject 1 tablespoon of jam into each donut.

Jam Filled Donuts

June 27, 2016 0

Loaded Chickpea Pita Pockets

Difficulty: Easy

Serves 4

Pita

I really dig a pita pocket every once in a while but I effing hate making felafel and the store-bought ones ain’t usually my jive. I decided to solve this problemo by filling the pockets with something else; chickpeas! Pan-fried and spiced to perfection with salad, homemade quick pickles* (quickles?!) and hummus make these guys a healthy, satisfying and bloody easy meal to whip up in no time. These guys make the perfect addition to a BBQ and how convenient that I’ve chucked them out into the bloggersphere just before the 4th of July?!

* If you have time to pickle the cabbage properly please do, or feel free to use store-bought!

Ingredients

Quick Pickles

  • 1/4 red cabbage, shredded
  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Hummus

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup tahini
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 425g can chickpeas
  • Salt

Chickpeas

  • 1 425g can chickpeas
  • 1/2 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon mixed herbs
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Extras

  • 4 pita pockets
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1 baby gem lettuce, rinsed and dried
  • 1 Lebanese cucumber, diced
  • Fresh parsley

Pita

Method

  1. Make the pickles by chucking the cabbage, vinegar and sugar in a jar and shaking. Place in the fridge for as long as possible, shaking occasionally.
  2. To make the hummus throw the olive oil, lemon juice, tahini, water and garlic into a blender and process until light and fluffy.
  3. Drain the chickpeas and gradually add while blending to create a smooth and creamy texture, add salt to taste.
  4. Now it’s time for the spiced chickpeas! Drain and place on paper towel to absorb any excess moisture.
  5. Heat the olive oil in a pan on high heat before adding the chickpeas, cook for about 8 minutes, tossing the pan occasionally.
  6. Add the paprika, mixed herbs, ground coriander, onion powder, garlic powder, and salt and continue to toss in the pan until the herbs form a semi-crispy coating on the chickpeas.
  7. Warm your pita pockets and cut in half before stuffing with pickles and salad.
  8. Get the chickpeas in there, drizzle with hummus and garnish with fresh parsley.
  9. Serve immediately.

Pita