Are you a part-time vegan? More and more of us are, switching to plant-based meals a few days a week. Vegan cook Kate Ford shares her quick, easy recipes – with no odd ingredients.

Broccoli, kale and pine-nut pizza (above)
Makes 1 pizza

1 shop-bought pizza base
5 tbsp passata with onion and garlic
4 slices sun-dried tomatoes in oil
2-3 broccoli florets
Small handful of curly kale
2 tbsp pine nuts
Extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp dried oregano
Salt and pepper

1 Preheat the oven to 220C/Gas 7. Place the pizza base on a large baking tray and spread liberally with passata. Finely slice the tomatoes and scatter over the pizza.
2 Cut off the stalks from the broccoli, leaving just very small florets. Remove woody stems from the kale. Roughly chop. Scatter the kale and broccoli over the pizza, then the pine nuts.
3 Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle generously with oregano. Season well with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
4 Bake for 8 minutes, or until the broccoli and kale are golden brown and crispy. Make it spicy by adding slices of fresh chilli or a generous pinch of chilli flakes before cooking, or drizzle with chilli oil just before serving.

Stir-fried broccoli and kale with pesto butter-bean mash

Stir-fried broccoli and kale with pesto butter-bean mashROMAS FOORD

Serves 2

120g tenderstem or purple sprouting broccoli
2 tbsp rapeseed or sunflower oil
1 tsp chopped garlic
Salt and pepper
75g curly kale
400g tin butter beans
½ tsp vegetable stock powder
1 tsp vegan pesto

1 Remove the woody ends from the broccoli and slice the stalks diagonally into 3-4 pieces. If any chunks are particularly thick, slice them in half lengthways.
2 Heat the oil in a large frying pan and add the broccoli and garlic. Season well and fry on a medium heat for 2-3 minutes.
3 Meanwhile, remove any woody stalks from the curly kale and roughly chop the leaves. Toss these into the pan and cook for a further 3-4 minutes until both broccoli and kale are crisp and golden.
4 Drain and rinse the butter beans and put them in a food processor with 75ml boiling water, the stock powder and a pinch of salt. Blitz to a very smooth purée, then pour it into a small saucepan and heat until piping hot. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.
5 Just before serving, stir the pesto through the butter-bean mash, divide between two dishes and top with the broccoli and kale.

One-pot linguine with olives, capers and sun-dried tomatoes

Serves 2

200g dried linguine or spaghetti
500g passata with onion and garlic
1 red chilli
6 slices sun-dried tomato (from a jar)
50g pitted black olives
1 tbsp capers
1 tsp sugar
2 tbsp olive oil
Handful of fresh basil
Black pepper

1 Find a large lidded saucepan in which the linguine will lie flat on the bottom, or snap the linguine in half to fit in a regular pan. Cover the linguine with the passata, then refill the passata carton or jar halfway with water (250ml), and add this to the pan. Bring it to the boil, then reduce to a simmer. Keep stirring while the pasta softens to ensure it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.
2 De-seed and finely slice the chilli, drain and finely chop the sun-dried tomatoes, halve the olives and drain the capers, then add all these ingredients to the pan, along with the sugar and olive oil. Stir well, cover with the lid and cook on a medium heat for 10-11 minutes, stirring regularly, until the pasta is cooked through.
3 Roughly chop the basil. When the pasta is cooked, stir in the basil and a grind of black pepper (it shouldn’t need any salt), then serve.

Creamy chickpea and kale curry

Serves 2

2 tbsp rapeseed or sunflower oil
1 onion, peeled and sliced
2 tbsp korma spice paste (or medium curry powder)
400g tin chickpeas
1 red chilli
2 tomatoes
Salt
400ml tin coconut milk
Large handful of curly kale
250g pouch pre-cooked basmati rice
Half a packet mini poppadoms

1 Heat the oil in a large frying pan and add the onion and spice paste. Sweat for 2 minutes, stirring regularly.
2 Drain and rinse the chickpeas and tip them into the pan. De-seed and finely slice the chilli and dice the tomatoes and put these into the pan, juice, seeds and all. Season with salt and stir everything together.
3 Pour in the coconut milk and cook for 4 minutes at a fairly high heat – the liquid should be bubbling vigorously, so stir it regularly to ensure the mixture isn’t sticking to the bottom.
4 Remove any woody stalks from the kale, chop it roughly, add it to the pan and cook for a further 4-6 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning if required.
5 Microwave the rice according to packet instructions. Serve the curry with the rice and poppadoms.

Tahini and cashew quinoa with garlic and ginger mushrooms

Serves 2

150g quinoa
100g cashew nuts
1 tbsp rapeseed or sunflower oil
1 tsp chopped garlic
1 tsp chopped ginger
200g button mushrooms
Salt and pepper
Large handful of curly kale
2 tbsp tahini
Juice of 1 lemon

1 Fill a saucepan with boiling water. Rinse the quinoa thoroughly in a fine-meshed sieve under a running tap, then tip it into the pan. Boil for 12-14 minutes until tender.
2 Meanwhile, heat a large frying pan and toast the cashews until they are just turning brown. Put them in a bowl and set aside.
3 Return the pan to the heat and add the oil, garlic and ginger. Clean the mushrooms and tip them into the pan, and season well with salt and black pepper. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
4 Remove any woody stalks from the kale and chop it finely. Add it to the frying pan and cook for a further 3-4 minutes until crisp.
5 In a mug or small bowl, combine the tahini, lemon juice and 3-4 tbsp water and whisk with a fork until smooth. You want a pouring consistency. Season.
6 Drain and rinse the quinoa, and fluff it with a fork. Serve topped with the mushroom and kale mixture, the cashews and tahini sauce.

Speedy bean burger with gherkins and mustard mayo

Serves 2

Handful of fresh coriander leaves
215g tin spicy refried beans
2 tbsp breadcrumbs
Plain flour for dusting
1 tbsp rapeseed or sunflower oil
Half an onion
1 tbsp vegan mayonnaise
1 tsp dijon mustard
2 large or 4 small gherkins
2 seeded burger buns
Handful of fresh rocket leaves

1 Chop the coriander leaves very finely and put them in a bowl with the refried beans and the breadcrumbs. Mash together with a fork until fully combined. Divide the mixture in two on a floured chopping board or surface and shape each half into a burger, sprinkling the top with a little flour, too.
2 Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry the burgers over a medium heat for 3-4 minutes on each side until golden brown and crispy. While they are cooking, peel and slice the onion and add it to the pan.
3 In a mug or small bowl, combine the mayonnaise and mustard, then slice the gherkins in half or into slices as you prefer.
4 Split the buns, place some rocket on the bottoms, put the burgers on top, spoon over the mayonnaise and onions, then add the sliced gherkins. Serve immediately.

Peanut Vietnamese rolls

Serves 2 as a starter or snack

50g pre-cooked fine rice noodles (from the chiller cabinet)
2 tsp soy sauce
Half a carrot
1 spring onion
Small handful of fresh coriander leaves
2 tbsp chilli-coated peanuts
Small handful of fresh beansprouts
4 spring roll wrappers
Sweet chilli dipping sauce

1 Cook the noodles according to the packet instructions. Tip them into a bowl, drizzle over the soy sauce and toss to mix it through the noodles.
2 To prepare the fillings, peel and grate or julienne the carrot. Peel and finely slice the spring onion. Remove the coriander leaves and discard the stalks. Crush the peanuts in a mortar with a pestle or chop them roughly.
3 Fill a large, shallow bowl or large frying pan with very warm water (not boiling – you will need to put your fingers in it). Place one of the spring-roll wrappers into the water and soak it for 10-15 seconds until soft, then lay it out flat on a large plate or chopping board.
4 Pile up the fillings in a line across the centre of the wrapper, starting with a few coriander leaves, peanuts, then a quarter of the noodles, spring onions, beansprouts and carrots. Fold in the two ends of the wrapper, then fold over one side to enclose the filling, and finally roll the whole thing up into a long tube shape, letting the wrapper stick to itself to seal in the fillings. Repeat with the remaining wrappers.
5 Fill a small bowl with sweet chilli dipping sauce and serve with the spring rolls.

Posh noodle pot with chilli peanuts

Serves 1

50g nest fine rice noodles

All or any of the following vegetables

Quarter of a large carrot
Quarter of a red pepper
4 mangetout
1 spring onion
Small handful of curly kale

Flavourings

2 tsp sweet chilli sauce
½ tsp vegetable stock powder
½ tsp ready-chopped ginger or ginger purée

To finish

Half a lime
1 tsp soy sauce
Small handful of chilli-roasted peanuts (or dry roasted for a less spicy option)

1 Take a heatproof jar or mug and press the noodles down to the bottom, breaking them up a bit if necessary.
2
Slice the carrot into matchsticks, the pepper and mangetout into thin strips, the spring onion into thin rounds and finely chop the kale, removing any tough stalks. Place all the vegetables on top of the noodles.
3
Add the chilli sauce, stock powder and ginger, then fill the jar with boiling water to cover. Leave to stand for 10 minutes until the noodles are cooked through. Squeeze in the lime juice, add the soy sauce, then roughly chop the peanuts and sprinkle on top.

Anna Jones
Anna Jones

Latest posts by Anna Jones (see all)