mushroom

There Is Mushroom In My Heart For You

Getting mushy. Why not.
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Distance is annihilated and prevents not the close and intimate association of two souls that are closely attached in heart even though they may be in two different countries.(‘Abdu’l-Bahá)image-1-png-11
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Guess who made what? ;)
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And last but not least, the single worst picture you will ever see. Are you ready?
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5 Minute 5 Ingredient Vegan Mushroom Soba Pasta

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If you, like me, like pasta, you should be eating soba! What is soba? Soba are Japanese noodles made of buckwheat flour. What’s the big deal about them? They’re low cal! Basically, half the calories of white pasta. A cup of cooked soba contains 113 calories whereas white spaghetti contains 220 per cup and wholewheat spaghetti 174.

113 < 220
113 < 174

You get it right?

For all you non-Japan dwellers, you should be able to find soba in the health or Asian section of your local supermarket. For Cantabrians, Piko, Liberty Market and New World.

Tonight I made this and WOW it was good. If I can say so myself.. which I can because this is my blog mwahaha. Anyways… I know a lot of people don’t like shiitake mushrooms so if you’re one of them you can use regular mushrooms or another vegetable all together (corn, broccoli or chickpeas are my recommendations).

1/2 packet of soba (or more or less whatever)
1/2 onion, diced small
1 punnet of shiitake mushrooms, chopped medium
1/2 can of whole peeled Italian tomatoes
spices (I’m cheating, I combined all the spices to make the recipe “5 ingredients” hehe but in my defense, it’s just a pinch of salt, red chilli and black pepper.)

Cook soba as per packet instructions, usually about a mere TWO minutes in boiling water – another reason why it’s so much better than pasta! It’s fasta! Get it? lol

Fry onion on medium heat with a little oil in a pan (1 minute)

Add mushrooms, stir (another min)

Add everything else, tomatoes, spices and cooked soba, stir.

Serve when all hot and steamy.

Oh mama mia! Oishi desu yo!

Vegetable Lasagna

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250g wholemeal lasagna sheets
2 tbsp olive oil
1 brown onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 capsicum (any colour)
1 punnet of white button mushrooms
2 small eggplants
handful of fresh spinach
small broccoli head
(all veggies chopped medium to small)
400g can all-natural diced tomatoes
4 tbsp tomato paste
salt and pepper to taste
750g smooth ricotta cheese
3 free-range eggs
3/4 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

Vegetable sauce:
Heat oil over medium heat in a large saucepan, add onion and garlic and cook, stirring for 5 minutes.

Add capsicum, mushroom, eggplant, spinach and broccoli, cover and cook gently for 5 minutes.

Add canned tomatoes and tomato paste, cook for 3 minutes, season with salt and pepper.

Ricotta:
Mix ricotta, eggs and basil, season with salt and pepper

Assembly: 
Preheat oven to 180C

Pour 1/2 cup of vegetables sauce into a lightly greased baking dish then alternate layers of lasagna, vegetable sauce and ricotta, ending with ricotta layer (allow for 4 layers).

Sprinkle with parmesan cheese.

Bake in oven for 45 minutes (25 if using white lasagna sheets).

Let stand for  5 minutes before serving.

TIP: the trick to delicious lasagna is AMPLE SAUCE and that the lasagna sheets, are completely covered with/in it. So for extra yum-factor, make sure your lasagna retains a high level of moisture.

FINALLY! My first “hike” in Japan

I use quotation marks here because I hiked with a group of 70+ year olds. So, it was really more a stroll through the mountains of Nishiawakura than a full-on hike but, I ain’t complaining! I hope you enjoy the photographs as much as I enjoyed taking them. I had so much fun with the elderly! We spotted 2 snakes, many many mushrooms, deer and boar prints and thankfully, no kuma (bear).

PS some highlights: our snazzy guide (a true hiking nerd equipped with 304 pockets and bear spray) advised us that the picture below is where Tottoro lives hehe and at noon, I swear to God; every single person ate onigiri (triangular Japanese rice ball) as part of their lunch. Seriously, everyone. But, yours truly of course. Gotta love Japan and its quirk!
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