February in the Garden February 16 2016
I don’t know about you, but I’m a fair weather kind of gardener. February is the month where I start getting inspired in the garden again. I love the crisp sunny days and the thought of Spring being just around the corner. Being a food blogger I’m a big fan of growing vegetables – they taste so good! This week I sowed some aubergine seeds and some radish seeds. For people that think aubergines are a waste of time to grow in the UK, I disagree! It’s unbelievably satisfying seeing aubergines grow and they’re actually not that hard to nurture.
As well as sowing seeds I will be tidying up my garden (late I know) and planting the cherry tree I bought a few months ago. I’ve wanted a cherry tree for a long time and can’t wait for it to blossom!
The seeds I’ve used are from last years Secret seed Swap. See how to register here.
Plant Based Parmigiana
4 Large aubergines
Handful of Basil
Tomato Sauce (can be pre-made, recipe here)
For the Vegan Mozzarella
250ml Hot water
40g Cashews (soaked overnight or boiled for 10 minutes)
40g Tapioca flour
1 Clove garlic (crushed)
1tbsp Nutritional yeast
1tsp Apple cider vinegar
½ tsp Salt
Method – Serves 4 – Oven 180*c
- Make your tomato sauce using this recipe. You can pre-make this and keep it in the fridge for up to 5 days.
- Finely slice the aubergines lengthways. Place on a baking tray and brush them with olive oil. Bake in the oven for approximately 15 minutes, Turning them over halfway through and brushing them with a little more oil. You may have to cook them in batches depending on the size of your oven.
- Make the mozzarella – If you forgot to soak your cashews you can boil them for 10 minutes until soft. Add all the ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. Pour into a saucepan and stir on a medium heat for 5-10 minutes until the mixture becomes thick and sticky. Set aside to cool. You can also pre-make this and keep in the fridge up to 5 days.
- In an ovenproof dish start to layer up the parmigiana. Firstly put a layer of baked aubergine slices into the bottom of the dish then spoon over some tomato sauce to cover them. Add some dollops of mozzarella and a few basil leaves. Then add your next layer of aubergines and repeat.
- Bake in the oven for 20-30 minutes until mozzarella has slightly browned. Sprinkle with some fresh basil leaves. Serve with a nice big green salad and/or bread.