Meet the chef...
Hi guys, I’m Louise (you may recognise me as @lou_wwgoldmember on Instagram) and I’m 38 years old, a wife, and a busy mum of twin boys who turn 9 next month.
I got to goal back in 2014 and since then have had some amazing opportunities come my way, including writing a column for the WW magazine which was the best experience ever. Now I’m keeping myself busy over on Instagram and enjoying my love of all things cooking!
Whilst I’m here to talk about and review the new Veggie & Vegan Cookboook, I would like to point out I'm not actually veggie or vegan… but I'm definitely open to trying healthy meat-free meals! I follow a wide range of inspirational members who are vegetarian and vegan on Instagram, and I see a lot of people online joining in with ‘meat-free Mondays’, so I've been keen to try out the concept and see if it would fit into my family's meal plan.
Read on to find out which recipes I choose to cook and review for you…
READ MORE: Try this FREE three-day vegan meal plan
First on my list was the Cherry Bakewell Bircher Muesli. As soon as I saw I could prepare this the night before, I was sold - I’m a busy mum, so this recipe really suited my schedule. I simply made up the oats as instructed, and then left them in the fridge overnight. Then in the morning, all I had to do was make the cherry compote.
Wow! I loved this brekky and so did my little boys. It was extremely filling (I was sorted right up until lunchtime) and the flavours were ridiculously tasty.
For my lunchtime meal I decided to try the Morrocan-style cauliflower soup. If you follow me on Instagram then you’ll know I absolutely LOVE to make my own soup. It’s just so easy to throw everything in and let the machine do its thing! But these flavours and vegetables aren’t something I would normally choose, so I was definitely trying something a little different to normal.
The soup was lovely! It had a little bit of spice, and with the yoghurt mixed in too it was really nice and creamy. Adding toasted almonds to the soup was a new thing for me, and if I’m honest I wasn’t sure I would like it - but I did, and the unexpected crunch was the perfect addition.
This made four portions, so there was more than enough to take to work the next day as well which was handy. I loved making this soup and trying the new flavours, it was great!
For dinner I chose something way out of my comfort zone - the jackfruit burgers with celeriac chips.
I kept hearing about jackfruit on Instagram and before now I had no idea what it was, where I could buy it or what it tasted like, but I did my research and found it in my local Asda. I believe you can buy it fresh, but I found it in the tinned fruit section of the supermarket.
Also, I should mention that celeriac was yet another food I had never ever tried or cooked with before, so I was excited to see what my family thought, and I kept quiet about what I was making.
Wow - I actually really enjoyed this! My boys ate it all without any questions, and my husband ate every last bite too.
I must admit the recipe did scare me a little - I tend to make meals I know I love, and these ingredients were foods I had never cooked with before, so it was definitely a bit of a challenge. Plus, I can be quite fussy with vegetables, so I had it in my head that I wouldn’t like the celeriac fries either, but... they were absolutely amazing, and I would 100% make them again! So another thumbs up for this meal.
I chose the Cacao & Banana ice cream as I thought this would be a great treat to make with my boys - and I was right! All we had to do was chop some bananas up and freeze them overnight, and then use this to make the ice cream the following day. It was so easy - my boys and I had so much fun making it together, and of course taste testing it!
We all loved it, and we’ll definitely be making it together again soon. It’s the perfect recipe for a dinner party too, as you can just make it in bulk and pop any leftovers back into the freezer afterwards. Plus at 2 SmartPoints per serving, how can you complain?
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my blog about the new Veggie and Vegan cookbook. I’ve definitely enjoyed experimenting with new ingredients, and will most definitely be including more of them in my weekly meal plan (starting off with 'meat-free Mondays'). This new cookbook has something for everyone, so definitely go and give it a try. I can guarantee you'll discover some new foods and recipes to enjoy - I know I certainly have!
READ MORE: 12 recipes even meat eaters will love