Smoked Paprika Avocado Salad

Gavin WrenRecipes, Vegan, Vegetarian

A healthy chickpea salad dressed with sweet white balsamic and smoked paprika, diced avocado and aromatic coriander is a beautiful lunchtime treat that's bursting with mexican and middle eastern flavours. It's vegetarian and vegan to boot, a meatfree treat to have for lunch or dinner and tastes even better if you make it in advance!
Most of the writing on my blog is not about food, but life in general and how I cope with it or not, in some cases. On occasion I veer onto a food-related social or political bent, but it's rare for me to write lovingly about the flavours and story behind a recipe. Today, I've been staring at my screen for 53 minutes and have only written the preceding sentence. The first 51 minutes and 13 seconds were spent typing then deleting, typing then deleting as I attempted to coax a story about smoked paprika onto the page.

Constructive Procrastination.
I also checked out the bulk price of Kalamata olives (c.£20 for 2kg on eBay, £16 on Amazon fresh) and appraised which size Really Useful Boxes I need for my cupboards (none, they're not quite the right size), to round up the disparate bags of half... come and read more...

Indian Sprouted Bean Salad with Avocado

Gavin WrenRecipes, Salads, Vegan, Vegetarian

Here's a spicy, zingy Indian style sprouted bean salad which has been my default lunch option for a few weeks, because it ticks all my boxes for a great lunch. It's simple to make (once you've got the sprouts), it's ridiculously tasty with the combination of seeds, spices, lemon and chilli, plus it's got a big tick next to all the major nutrients we need. All this alongside it being completely vegan, it really couldn't be more versatile and all satisfying.
Here's a spicy, Indian style sprouted bean salad which has been my default lunch option for the last few weeks, because it ticks all my 'great lunch' boxes. It's simple to make (once you've got the sprouts), ridiculously tasty with the combination of seeds, spices, lemon and chilli, plus it's got a big tick next to all the major nutrients we need. Alongside it being completely vegan, it really couldn't be more versatile and all satisfying.

Social Sprouts
Sprouts say one thing to me. Brussels. I'm not talking about the cosmopolitan city, lying a mere 121 minutes away from London St Pancras, rather the bitter green orbs of distaste which I was deigned not to like well before one had ever crossed the threshold of my trap. Society seemed constructed for little children who Don't Like Sprouts. Perhaps it's their bitter flavour, or perhaps there's an entire social... come and read more...

Strawberry Avocado Salad

Gavin WrenRecipes, Salads, Side dishes, Vegetarian

Sweet summery strawberries play against the tangy, metallic feta and the creamy avocado to make a delicious salad that’s ripe for any summer picnic or lunch table. Dressed with a rich strawberry and balsamic dressing, this vegetarian strawberry avocado salad is a beautifully fresh, easy to make dish that’s a perfect starter, side dish or salad.
This week I’ve created a visually arresting, sure-fire summer streaker, strawberry avocado salad, which will whip it’s clothes off and run across your table whenever you desire. Summer, Summer, Summertime. It’s summer. It really is summer. The last few weeks have been spent basking (to be more precise, working) in the high twenties, a level of warmth that had barely graced my skin this year. It took until the third week of August before the weather finally climbed out of bed, yawned and said, “so, what season is it?”. This summery-ness inspired an insatiable urge to create something tantalisingly summery. I wanted a recipe that felt fresh and bright, something which climbed up to the top floor, took it’s clothes off and ran around screaming “I”M SUMMER!”. Strawberry avocado came in a vision, seeming to be the golden ticket. Strawberries were first on the list, because making a salad with…

My Response to The Unhealthy Truth Behind ‘Wellness’ and ‘Clean Eating’

Gavin WrenFood Opinion Pieces, The World of Food

This piece is a response to Ruby Tandoh’s piece on Wellness, originally published on Vice.com I find such vitriolic swipes at ‘wellness’ quite interesting to read, because there certainly is something slightly repugnant about the virginal enthusiasm with which the wellness gurus espouse their puritanical regimes. But also I feel any anger directed at them is somewhat out of proportion to the actuality of the wellness ‘movement’, if I can call it one. Generally a movement has some kind of organisation or structure to it, a defining aim, which in this case wellness doesn’t, there’s no guiding definitions or rules other than boosting Instagram’s user statistics or Chia seed sales. Clean, or not to clean? The author’s derision of the word ‘clean’ as used by wellness bloggers in reference to the foods they recommend feels borderline sanctimonious, which is ironic because it makes the whole discussion seem like a sanctimonious…

Avocado prawn wraps on khobez with mint yoghurt

Gavin WrenFish & Shellfish, Recipes, Sandwiches & Wraps, Small Bites, Vegetarian

Avocado prawn khobez wraps with mint yoghurt
I’m in a lucky position. I live in a part of North London where there’s a strong Turkish community and just down the road there’s a lot of Greeks as well. That means I’m tripping over mediterranean delis and restaurants and there’s an abundance of new ingredients to discover that seem to magically fall into my shopping basket on a regular basis. It also puts me in the unique situation of never having any trouble finding ingredients for Ottolenghi recipes, something I doubt many people in the world can claim. I’ve also been slowly re-discovering the joys of Turkish baking. I remember a childhood holiday to Turkey, where we took a hire car inland away from the pizza, steak and chip emporiums that sadly litter the coast and found a slice of real Turkey. As we drove inland, we got away from the sea and into the hills, to be…

Spicy avocado sweet potatoes

Gavin WrenMain Dishes, Recipes, Vegan, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Spicy avocado sweeet potato
I’ve got a secret to tell you. I don’t know whether to be embarrassed about this or not, but I’ve been eating baked sweet potatoes at least once a week for a very long time. They’ve become my default, simple, go-to, easy dinner of choice and I’m not even beginning to get bored of them. One of the very first recipes that was never put on this blog for you was about baked sweet potatoes. I know that’s a confusing sentence, but what I mean is that one of the first recipes that I pondered over endlessly, planned and procrastinated, then almost posted, was baked sweet potatoes. I’ve still got the draft sitting in a folder, I just didn’t take the photos. Because, my brothers and sisters, did you know that you can bake them like a regular potato? Cooked whole in the oven then sliced and topped with whichever…