Iso birthday- Vegan brunch

Turning 27 last year I wasn’t envisioning in a years time on my 28th I’d be celebrating it in a locked down Melbourne. A weird thought for someone who loves having heaps of friends around, having brunch and taking it as a day to do something fun. Not everyone is a birthday person but I like taking it as a chance to have fun with my friends. I definitely am not the only one in this boat of having a birthday in lockdown and won’t be the last as restrictions continue so I thought I’d share what my housemates and I did as a fun thing for my birthday if it could help someone else who’s out of ideas of what to do.

Being the food lover that I am I wanted us to have a birthday brunch. My idea was for everyone to contribute with something for the food. Being quite a few people in our household this made the whole thing heap easier and it meant we could have loads of delicious food options. Then my other wish was for all of us to actually get a bit dressed up. It’s been a lot of months of wearing trackies and gym gear so I thought it would be an excuse to wear something nice. Or the theme was “wear something that makes you feel pretty” which meant really people could wear whatever they liked 🙂

In the morning before we got started Mim programmed a little birthday workout for us to do (would be rude not to, exercise is the key to any good day in my book!). Me already being unwell back then took it easy but I absolutely starting my day by moving my body with everyone. It was such a good workout which included different stations of movements I love, one being a mini DT. One of my favourite Crossfit workouts. You worked in pairs and had a certain amount of time on each station. Couldn’t have been better organised Mimsi!

My birthday brunch menu consisted of:

  • My tofu scramble
  • Vegan pancakes (recipe from Nora Cooks. You can find it here, we added dark chocolate chips and it was delicious).
  • Hash browns
  • Bagels and bread
  • Brocolini, mushrooms and roasted tomatoes
  • Fresh berries chopped up and maple syrup for the panckaes
  • Orange juice (and sparkling wine for those who wanted Mimosas)
  • Smashed avo

The cherry on top was my friends surprising me with a delivery from Vegan Shack of muffins and pastries. I absolutely love that kind of stuff so I was in heaven trying out my first vegan croissant. It was incredible! They know me too well haha.

The wonderful weather just added to it all. We sat in the back in the sunshine enjoying good music with good food and in good company. I got pretty spoiled and got a couple of gifts sent over to me from my family back home and a couple of really nice deliveries. In the end my iso birthday was actually one of the nicest birthdays I’ve had.

If you have a friend celebrating their birthday in iso and struggling for ideas on how to make their day special I would definitely say sending them a nice message, even a video message, dropping of a gift, our sending them a gift or organising a surprise Zoom call are some pretty easy but very nice ways of making their day special 🙂

My easy vegan tofu scramble

Tofu scramble has become one of my biggest food loves of my life. I love going to different cafes and trying out their big vegan breakfast, comparing and contrasting the different delicious they put on the plate. The tofu scramble on toast always being my highlight. For ages I’ve been trying to replicate some of my favourite ones at home and to be honest I thought I had given up. It tasted pretty awful compared to what I had out.

However, I’ve been blessed and cursed in this life with a very stubborn mind who does not simply just give up. With the travel restrictions imposed on us this year the pressure rose on finding something that could fill my tofu scramble void when I no longer could visit my favourite cafes.

I decided to turn to Google and Google what makes a good tofu scramble and came across “Kala Namak” salt. An Indian black salt. This black salt turned out to be the golden nugget I’d been desperately searching for. The missing piece to this dilemma of creating a tofu scramble I actually enjoyed eating. Don’t let the fart smell that hits when you first open the container put you off. It reminds me of a the smell of a boiled egg haha.

The next thing that helped shape this tofu scramble to what it is in this recipe is adding vegan cheese. I really like it and the favourite brand is Sheese, from my good old previous home, Scotland. They really are onto something there. If you are looking for which specific one of their cheese’s I use it’s the Cheddar flavour.

Alrighty, enough blabbering. Here comes the recipe. My life’s work (not to over exagerate or anything), my tofu scramble (for serving suggestions scroll down):

Ingredients
160g firm tofu (if you are in Australia the best one texture wise is Soyco Hi-Protein tofu at Coles or Macro Firm Tofu at Woolies)
15g vegan cheese (Sheese Mature cheddar is the favourit)
Turmeric to taste (this is what gives the scamble its lovely yellow colour. Don’t overdo it though. It’s not a pleasant taste when you get too much of it)
Ground Cummin to taste
(you want a hint of cumin, not too much, If you are making the Mexican version as suggested below however, add a bit more)
Kala Namak (Black Salt) to taste
Pepper
to taste

Method
If you are sauteing any veggies for this meal (such as brocolini, mushrooms, onion etc) I would suggest chopping and throwing them in the pan first. That is what will take the longest.

Next in a small bowl starting crumbing up the tofu into smaller pieces. I personally prefer it when the chunks aren’t too small. Then add the spices, salt and pepper. Mix it and add a splash of water. Mix it again to make sure the tofu is evenly coated.

Because I love saving on washing up, I use a big pan so I can sautee veggies and cook the tofu in the same pan but still keep it all separate.

When the tofu has turned a more bright yellow and getting warm, its time to add the cheese. At this point you might want to add more water to keep it creamy and not dry out. Once the cheese has melted and stirred through it is time to remove it from the pan. The veggies should probably be done by now too. Now is the time to toast your bread and wilt the spinach whilst it’s toasting.

Serving suggestions:

Version 1: The standard every day version for me is wilted spinach (love a squeeze of lemon on my spinach), broccolini, roasted cherry tomatoes and mushrooms on the side.
Version 2: Mexican wraps! I make it into wraps with tomato salsa, cucumber and increase the cumin flavour in the scramble. A bit of coconut yoghurt is nice in it too for added creaminess.
Version 3: The weekend indulgence version, big vegan brekky. Version one but add hash browns into the mix. Who doesn’t love hash browns?!

I hope you like it! Let me know what you think if you make it or if you want to share your won tofu scramble recipe I’m all ears! xx

Guess who’s back

Hi everyone!

God for a moment there I actually thought the writing was on the wall for this blog. I thought I had run out of things to write about but now with everything going on I felt an urge to sit down and pour my thoughts out into the cyber world once more.

Instagram has been my primary place of expressing myself as of late but I felt like this is my safe space where I can vent and think “out loud”. My place where I can create what I want and if someone feels as though they would like to read it and that it might even help them in someway that’s incredible too.

So much has been going on in my life and there are a heap of things I’d like to share on here but I thought a first post is a start. Maybe even a reintroduction?

Hi my name is Madeleine but I’m mainly called Maddie and Mads by those who know me. I’m Swedish (with some Danish and South Korean in me) but since eight years back I’ve lived in Scotland for six years and now Australia for two. Right now I live outside of Melbourne in a house share with friends I met at my gym. When I was younger I lived in Japan for a couple of years and started schooling in Singapore.

One of my major passions in life is moving through exercise, walking and exploring (hence the name of my blog). I’m not one for sitting still. The major thing I love training since four years back is Crossfit but I try to get some yoga in once in a while. I’ve also recently started to enjoying running and one of my favourite things to do with my gym friends is hill sprints on Sundays (when we are allowed to gather in groups legally). When I feel like doing something a bit more relaxed I love a big walk out in nature, especially if there is a coastal view. The ocean rejuvenates me. This recent realisation was really sparked when I started dating my boyfriend Matthew at the beginning of this year. We absolute love it. I met him at a friend’s party and from the second we started I knew I liked him. We are pretty similar but in some instances we could not be more different haha. The thing I love the most about our relationship is how we love doing the same things together, training, walking, yoga and eating food. It’s always a good time 🙂

I don’t like putting myself in categories but I eat a vegan diet. I do it for a variety of reasons and if you are interested I could write about it sometime. The reason I don’t like labeling myself is that I feel it limits me and growth. I like being able to go with how I feel. I love going out for food and cooking food.

Other interests I have are: caring for my plants and most importantly dogs, I love dogs. I unfortunately don’t have one myself but thankfully have a lot of friends who do.

Then I should probably throw in travelling. Learning about new cultures and new places is what has led me to live abroad for as long as I have.

I’m also a social being and love seeing my friends and having gatherings (quite difficult at the moment living in the Covid version of Melbourne).

Currently it’s been a bit of a struggle for me with doing anything of the things I love due to Corona restrictions and me being pretty unwell. I think that’s when I’ve been doing a bit of soul searching. It appeared to me today that I’ve missed writing but writing for me and in a space where I feel like I’m not forcing it on other people like a social media platform. Because of my current state it can be hard for me to process information properly so excuse me for any potential typos or words missed out. I’ll try my best but hopefully it’ll make sense anyway.

I’m excited to get back into this and put my thoughts on this space once more. I hope you’ll like it and maybe even leave me a comment😊

Love, Maddie xx

Vegan “Blueberry Banana Bread” protein oats

Wow, we’re here again. Who would’ve thought? The blog has once again been incredibly silent but for a moment like this, where I’m sharing my favourite oat recipe I thought it needed to be uploaded somewhere you can find it easily again. Whilst I am a massive fan of Instagram and I’m still fairly active on there, I think this is the best place to keep it in case you are ever inclined to give it a go.

This recipe came to me because I absolutely love banana bread, I love blueberry muffins and combine this with cinnamon it’s like a match in heaven. This oat recipe is like eating cake for breakfast and it’s my main motivation for getting out of bed in the morning to have this bowl of deliciousness (if I may say so myself). S

o, without further ado, here is my latest life’s work when it comes to recipes, my oats. Thank you granddad for cooking them for me growing up. This is dedicated to you, even though he would deeply question this recipe. It is definitely not the traditional Swedish style oats he would serve us haha. One thing I am adamant about, which he was too, is they must be made on the stove. No microwaves here. Unless on days when I bring mine to work and reheat them in the microwave. Cold oats are just depressing.

Vegan “Blueberry Banana Bread” Protein Oats

50g oats
A sprinkle of chia seeds
A sprinkle of flaxseeds
A pinch of salt
1 scoop vegan vanilla protein powder (Massive fan of White Wolf Nutrition if you’re in Australia and Form Nutrition if you’re in the UK)
About double the amount of water to oats

For serving 
40g frozen blueberries
50g banana
Cinnamon to taste
10g almond butter
Some walnuts
A sprinkle of cacao nibs
A pinch of salt
1/2 cup of Rebel Mylk (Semi skimmed)

Method

Grab a pot, throw in the oats, water, chia seeds and flaxseeds and the salt. Bring to a boil and let it simmer until desired consistency. You may need to add water as you go. I like when they are cooked through and creamy. Not too thick.

Whilst they are cooking, heat your frozen blueberries. I do this in a little pan on the stove too. Once they are cooked through I put them aside and then I chuck in the banana that I’ve cut up and get it all nice and caramelised. God it’d good.

When you’ve got the oats to your desired consistency it’s time to add the protein powder. This will make the oats go really thick, I usually add more water afterwards and let it reheat slightly before pouring them into my coconut bowl (yup I have a specific porridge bowl and wooden porridge spoon).

Top the oats off with the banana, the blueberries, almond butter, walnuts, cacao nibs, the pinch of salt and finally the cinnamon (the more the better in my book, okay there is such a thing as too much cinnamon though). The cherry on top is the Rebel Mylk, I am obsessed with their mylk. It’s amazing but any plant mylk you like will really do to be honest. Pour that on top, sit down and enjoy!

I hope you love them as much as I do!

M x