The jury of VeganChef 2023 was blown away by the students' cooking skills. Below you can find the recipes of the dishes they have cooked. We hope that you will get inspired by it and participate in the VeganChef competition of 2024!
1. Max & Sten - Chinese eggplant in szechuan sauce with coconut rice
Ingredients coconut rice:
● 350 g jasmine rice
● 20 g unmelted coconut oil
● 3 whole star anise fruits
● 8 cardamom pods (lightly crushed in mortar)
● 400 ml boiling water
● 250 g fat coconut milk
● Coconut flakes/coconut chips (well toasted)
Ingredients szechuan sauce:
● 1 teaspoon Szechuan peppers
● 2 teaspoons ginger rind
● 2 garlic cloves (finely chopped)
● 1 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
● 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
● 1 tablespoon of sesame oil
● 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
● 1 teaspoon sambal oelek
● 60 ml salt-reduced soy sauce
● 100 ml water
● 1 tablespoon of cornstarch
● 4 Chinese aubergines
● 1 carrot
● rice vinegar
● Bunch of spring onions
● Red chillies
● Olive oil
● Kitchen paper
● Frying pan
● Saute pan (with thick bottom)
1. Place the jasmine rice in clear water up to 2 cm above the rice, soak for at least half an hour and up to 4 hours.
2. In the meantime, cut the Chinese aubergine into half-moons or in-your-face pieces. Place them in a large bowl submerged in water with two teaspoons of salt. Handy to put a plate on top so they soak well. Let them stand for 20-30 minutes.
3. Cut the carrots julienne and put them in a bowl or deep plate, in which they can lie. Heat the rice vinegar with quite a few scoops of granulated sugar (to taste) until the sugar is completely dissolved and the vinegar just barely starts to smoke. Pour the warm rice vinegar over the winter carrots so that they are completely submerged. Set aside
4. For the szechuan sauce, put the chillies in the pan and roast them. Then immediately throw them into the mortar and grind them finely. Please be careful with the amount of szechuan peppers, don't do more than a teaspoon. Otherwise, your whole mouth might go numb. Grab a bowl where everything fits. Mix the szechuan peppers together with the garlic, ginger, sesame oil, five-spice powder, rice vinegar, granulated sugar, sambal oelek and soy sauce. Then mix the cornstarch with the water and add it to the sauce.
5. Drain the rice well and discard the soaking water. Put the coconut oil in a saute pan along with the star anise fruits and cardamom pods. Let these soak nicely on medium-high heat for 8 minutes. Turn up the heat and throw the rice into the pan, let it mix with coconut oil for 2 minutes so that all the rice looks a little glazy. After this, pour the coconut milk and boiling water into the pan. Add a little more salt, bring to the boil. Put a tight-fitting lid on the pan and cook on low heat for 20 minutes. Then remove from the heat and leave to steam for another 10 minutes. After this, the rice can be served.
6. After soaking the aubergine, dry it well with kitchen paper. Next, toss the aubergine in a frying pan with olive oil and fry the light part of the aubergine on both sides until golden brown. You may have to use a second pan or do it in two different portions. This will take about 10 minutes. After that, pour the szechuan sauce into the pan and let it reduce and if all goes well, the aubergine will also absorb a lot of this sauce. The aubergine can be served.
7. Divide the rice and aubergine between the plates. Remove the pickled carrot from the bowl and also place on the plate. Cut the red chillies into rings and also place these on the plate. Also cut the spring onion into thin, diagonal rings and place these on the plate as well. Season with salt and pepper. Optional: add the coconut chips or the plate.
2. Alex & Inger - Vegan king oyster mushroom gyros
Ingredients for the gyros:
● King oyster mushrooms
● Gyros seasoning
● Coloured chilli
Ingredients for the naan:
● Vegan cottage cheese
● Self-rising flour
Ingredients for the pickled red onions:
● Red onions
● Natural vinegar
● Crystal sugar
Ingredients for the sauce:
● Vegan yoghurt
● A whole lemon
Using a fork, pull the stems of the king oyster mushrooms into thin strands. Finely chop the tops of the oyster mushrooms and put them in a large bowl along with the strands. Next, finely chop the chilli (Amount to taste), and mix those into the bowl as well. Next, spray all this with a few generous squirts of oil. Finally, add the gyro spices, and mix everything well. Leave for a while to marinate.
Then fry on medium-hot this all until everything is cooked. Your vegan gyros is ready.
In a large bowl, add the vegan cottage cheese together with half that weight in self- rising flour. Also add a good dose of salt. Then keep stirring through the dough with a spoon, adding baking flour until it starts to become a dry ball. Add more spices or garlic to taste. Then knead it on a clean kitchen surface sprinkled with baking flour. Knead it for 5 minutes until it becomes a nice ball. Ideally, you should leave this ball for another 10 minutes, but if you are in a hurry, you can start rolling it out right away. Sprinkle a rolling pin with some flour and roll out pieces of the dough to a thickness of about 3-5 mm. Cut out shapes if you like, or keep it in a round. Heat a pan on medium to high heat. Without putting any oil in it, place the dough in the middle of the pan. After 2 minutes or so, flip to check if the dough is not going too fast. You may find that the dough bulges, but that's just fine as it will get cooked inside. Flip a few times until both sides have nice brown spots, and the inside is cooked. Voila, your naan is ready.
Pickled onions recipe:
In a saucepan, heat equal parts natural vinegar and water. Bring this to the boil, then add a teaspoon of sugar. Stir this until all the sugar is dissolved. In the meantime, you can chop red onions very finely. The finer they are, the faster they will be ready. Then add these to the boiling mixture and leave on the heat for another 5 minutes or so. Then remove the pan from the heat and let it cool in the pan. After about an hour, your onions will be ready, however, it will get even more flavour the longer you wait. Put them in an old jar and store for a few weeks.
Chop the coriander and mint very finely and add this to the vegan yoghurt. Then grate lemon zest from the lemon and add this too. Finally, you can squeeze the lemon for an even fresher sauce.
3. Cato & Joline - Pumpkin melanzane sage crumble
Small disclaimer, we're always just messing around in the kitchen, so we've estimated these quantities a bit, but just taste, smell and feel what's right and have some fun with it :).
Greetings from the cooking moles.
● 8 Roma tomatoes
● 250 ml Tomato frito
● Canned tomato puree
● 1 large onion
● 3 cloves of garlic
● About 20 grams of basil
● 1 lemon
● 2 teaspoons Italian herbs
● Half a bottle of pumpkin
● 150 g unsalted, unroasted cashews
● Large teaspoon Dijon mustard
● 4 tablespoons of noble yeast
● 1 teaspoon paprika powder
● 2 teaspoons onion powder
● 1 teaspoon turmeric
● One drop of vanilla flavouring
● 3 aubergines
● 500 grams of flour
● 150 grams of vegetable butter
● 7 grams of sage
● 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
● Half a vegetable stock cube
● Unroasted, unsalted hazelnuts.
1. Dice the pumpkin (you can just do it with the skin, this contains a lot of vitamin, flavour and peels an awful lot of work too), cut the tomato into wedges, fry the onion and cut 2 garlic cloves,
2. Sauté the onion in a sauce pan, once it is shiny add the tomato puree and garlic. (It is important to sauté the puree a little to lose its sourness a little).
3. Add the tomatoes and fry for another 2 minutes or so, once the purée starts to brown. Deglaze with about 150 ml of water.
4. Add the frito, baste the basil leaves and add the sprigs to the sauce (the sprigs contain the most flavour). Also add pepper, salt and Italian herbs and a little lemon juice.
5. Let it simmer for a nice long while cooking the diced pumpkin until buttery.
6. Finely chop the basil leaves.
7. Put everything in a food processor, or puree it with a hand blender. So everything here includes the tomato sauce, the cooked pumpkin and the basil leaves. Add more pepper, salt or lemon juice to taste.
1. For best results, soak the cashews overnight, for quick results soak them in boiling water for 2 hours, and for turbo results; soak the time you have in boiling water. The longer they soak the smoother your sauce will become.
2. Soak the cashews in a bowl so they are just submerged (do this by pouring boiling water on them, unless you go for the turbo method, in which case it is best to let them boil on the gas).
3. Put the cashews in a food processor and run it until almost a paste forms.
4. Add the water they soaked in or almond milk, noble yeast, mustard, 1 clove of garlic, paprika powder, onion powder, turmeric, a drop of vanilla flavouring, large teaspoon of salt and pepper to a food processor. For an extra tang, you can also add some Cayenne here. But melanzane is by nature a mild dish, but just want to give you the option.
5. Run the food processor until a cheese sauce forms.
1. Cut the aubergine into 1 cm slices, width-wise so that you are left with circles. (For the real master chefs; for even more ultimate results, you can also leave the aubergine with salt to extract some moisture, remove the salt and aubergine sweat before proceeding to step 2). If you opt for the oven dish, lengthwise slicing can also be easy! Is easier for building a real melanzane.
2. Brush the aubergine with oil mixed with salt and pepper
3. Then roll the slices in flour.
4. Fry the slices in a hot pan with a little oil until golden brown.
1. Melt the butter with the sage sprigs over the heat
2. Let this simmer for a while until you taste that the butter has taken on the flavour of the sage.
3. Toast the hazelnuts until nicely golden brown and then finely chop them (this can also be done in the food processor)
4. Finely chop the sage leaves and grate the lemon peel.
5. In a bowl, first mix with a spatula the sage butter, the flour (start with 250g and keep adding for a nice crumble), half a stock cube, the hazelnut, the flour, sugar and lemon zest. Once it comes together a bit, get to work with your hands and make a crumb.
6. For the version where the dish is made on the cooker, briefly fry the crumble in the pan until it becomes a golden brown crumble. For the oven version, leave the crumble 'raw'.
The oven version
1. Either build piles of the slices, or make it into a classic melanzane by successively applying tomato sauce, then an aubergine slice then cheese sauce and then tomato sauce again etc. Finish the pile with tomato sauce where you put the crumble on top.
2. Put the crumble in a preheated 175-degree oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the crumble is golden brown.
3. Serve up and enjoy.
The pan version
1. Pour a little tomato sauce into the pan
2. Then build the piles by first putting down an aubergine slice, coating it with tomato sauce and then with the cashew sauce, repeat until you have the maximum height of the pan to have it on the fire with lid. Finish with a layer of tomato sauce. Let this simmer on the fire for 15-20 minutes.
3. Carefully remove the piles from the pan and top with the crumble. And enjoy.
4. Kevin & Wessel - Tabouleh with cranberries and walnuts
For 6 people:
● 100g bulgur, medium grain
● 75g walnuts, unsalted
● 1 green chilli
● 2 spring onions
● 75g leaf parsley, leaves and succulent stalks
● 40g mint, only the leaves
● 40g coriander, just the leaves
● 100g dried cranberries
● juice of 1 lemon
● extra-virgin olive oil
● 2 tsp silan or date syrup
● 2 tsp pul biber
1. Flood the bulgur with hot tap water and leave to soak for 10 minutes.
2. Check if the bulgur is al dente and drain in a sieve.
3. Toast the walnuts for 6-8 minutes in the oven (170 degrees) or in a dry frying pan over medium-high heat until light golden brown. Let cool and break into coarse pieces.
4. Remove the stalk from the chilli, rub the pepper back and forth in your hands and shake out the seeds. Cut the chilli and spring onion into rings.
5. Finely chop the parsley, mint leaves and coriander leaves, but do not stand around clumsily chopping, as the herbs will lose their precious juices and become soggy.
6. Put the bulgur, chilli, spring onion, herbs, walnuts and cranberries in a bowl. Just before serving, season with the lemon juice, a more than generous splash of olive oil, the silan, pul biber and a generous pinch of coarse salt.
Aubergine carpaccio with techina, thyme and pine nuts
For 4 people:
● 4 large aubergines
● 2 tbsp pine nuts
● 2 spring onions, the green part
● extra-virgin olive oil
● 2 large ripe tomatoes
● 2 tbsp young thyme, coarsely chopped
● 4 tsp silan or date syrup
● pul biber
1. Roast the aubergines over an open fire or, if you don't have a gas cooker, in the oven under the grill (see page 386). Let the aubergines cool slightly and peel off the blackened skin. Sprinkle the flesh on both sides with a pinch of fine salt. Set aside in the fridge for a while until the aubergine has lost a lot of its moisture.
2. Toast the pine nuts in a dry frying pan until golden brown and leave to cool. Cut the green part of the spring onions diagonally into thin rings. Preheat four plates.
3. Pat the aubergines dry, remove the crown, cut crosswise into slices and divide between the plates. Cover with a sheet of cling film and spread the aubergine evenly over the plates by gently beating or pressing on them. Remove the foil. Sprinkle the carpaccio with coarse salt (bear in mind the fine salt has already soaked into the aubergine) and do not drizzle too sparingly with olive oil.
4. Squeeze half a tomato over each plate (save the flesh for a salad) and draw decorative circles with techina. Sprinkle the thyme, spring onion and pine nuts over the aubergine. Fill a teaspoon per person with silan and use a knife tip to shoot dainty splashes over the carpaccio. Finally, sprinkle with a pinch of pul biber.Ideally, the aubergine carpaccio should be lukewarm when served.