We went looking for more purple. My mum often has irises in a vase:
Grace helped by pointing out some purple flowers in the garden:
Then we had a photo of Quin’s leggings, Ella’s top and Maddy’s bracelet.
My parents had been to Europe recently and contributed a photo of purple flowers at Kensington Palace:
I got home and started looking around for purple. We have a big purple sofa but other than that, we have splashes of purple, which are considerably less than the swathes of green. Purple books:
Purple bits and pieces, mainly from around the kitchen:
Sylvia’s purple clothes:
A purple design on a baby blanket (stitched by my high school teacher Mrs M whose passion for literature lingers with me even today):
I thought I might find a purple house on my walks around the neighbourhood but it was not to be. I looked and looked but was lucky to find a fencepost and a letterbox:
There were many purple flowers in gardens. I had hope of finding deep purple roses but finally had to settle for a pale mauve one:
I did find a purple picnic table at the Railway Hotel:
And some purple grafitti on the wall:
I came to the conclusion that there is not enough purple in our lives. It is all around us but only in small patches of colour. I want more. More purple beetroot burgers. More purple plum chutney. more purple blueberry soup. More purple cherry salsa. So I had to add to the purple recipes.
I wasn’t sure what purple food to feature until I came across a purple cauliflower at La Manna Fresh. It is a rare joy to find such an oddity. In fact, I haven’t seen one since my first blog event post very early in my blogging when I couldn’t for the life of me work out how to focus my camera properly. I had to buy it and all the other purple food I could.
Unfortunately due to the season, I was unable to find some fine purple discoveries over the past few years but you can see photos in older posts featuring or purple congo potatoes or purple asparagus or dried dragonfruit. Given time, I might even blog with purple basil and purple butter lettuce. In the below photo you can see my purple haul of cauliflower, beetroot, sweet potato, aubergine, cabbage, onion, garlic, potatoes, passionfruit, blueberries and beetroot chips.
My head was spinning with ideas. Dips. Stirfries. Soup. The first night I made cauliflower falafels that were a little too salty and not quite purple enough, despite purple ingredients such as purple corn flour, pomegranate molasses and red onion. I also made a dairy-free tahini sauce based on Tofu for Two’s sauce and added beetroot dip but it just ended up pink.
I wanted some really really purple food. Finally I settled on Fran’s recommendation of trying Cauliflower Rice. It was the perfect way to feature some of the purple cauliflower, which became an even deeper purple when cooked. (Alternatively I had considered a purple cauliflower mash.) With the view of keeping it simple, I then took my purple cabbage – it reminds me a bit of Edvard Munch’s painting, The Scream – and fried it up with lots of butter and salt. I roasted some beetroot and eggplant to add to the purple vegetables.
For the ultimate purple meal, I piled purple cauliflower rice, fried purple cabbage, roasted beetroot, roasted eggplant, falafel in layers on my plate. I finished it off with some tofu sauce that I would like to think is a very pale purple. It was dark, intense and full of butter and salt. I loved it. E was not so keen. We had leftovers that went into a purple soup the next day with some potatoes, sweet potato, lentils and water.
Not content with the purple falafel fry-up and soup, I also made a purple juice, which was delicious. It was unusual for me to strain it. I don’t have a fancy elecronic juicer and usually just puree with a hand held blender in a tall jug but this was too seedy and pulpy and I found using the bottom of a glass rather than a spoon helped the juice get through the strainer quicker.
I am dedicating this post to Quin who I know will love it. If you too have a passion for purple, I can highly recommend these dishes!
- ¼ purple cauliflower, chopped and steamed
- ½ bunch parsley, chopped
- 2 tbsp purple corn flour
- 2 tbsp tahini
- ⅛ red onion, chopped
- 2 large cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1-3 tsp pomegranate molasses*
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tin chickpeas
- 1-3 tsp tamari*
- black sesame seeds and oil spray for baking
Note: I used 1 tbsp pomegranate molasses and 1 tsp tamari but the falafels were a little sweet and needed more seasoning. It was ok as the cabbage, cauliflower and sauce were quite salty. However, I suggest checking the taste and gradually adding teaspoons of both pomegranate molasses and tamari.
Place all ingredients except black sesame seeds and oil spray into the food processor and blend to make a paste. Line a baking tray with baking paper and drop teaspoonfuls onto tray. Use damp fingers to shape as round balls. Spray with oil spray and sprinkle with black sesame seeds. Bake for 30 min at 230 C.
Adapted from Tofu for Two
- 3 tablespoons tahini
- ⅓ cup nutritional yeast
- 70 g tofu (optional)
- 1-2 garlic cloves
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 tsp agave syrup (or sugar)
- 2 tbsp beetroot dip (or additional 1 tsp agave syrup)
- juice of 1 small lemon
- ⅔ cup water
Place all ingredients in food processor and blend til combined to make thickened sauce. I added more water than Heikki because I wanted it to be a pouring consistency but add the water gradually until you have your desired consistency.
Adapted from a book my sister has (I will get name soon)
- ¾ purple cauliflower
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 clove garlic
- ¼ red onion finely chopped
- ½ tsp salt
Roughly chop cauliflower, then blitz in food processor til finely chopped. It will look a little like rice. Melt butter in large frypan over low to medium heat. Lightly fry onion and garlic for a couple of minutes. Add cauliflower and fry for about 5-8 minutes til cooked. If you are using purple cauliflower you will notice it changing colour when cooked.
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp butter
- ½ red onion
- 2 garlic cloves
- ½ purple cabbage, thinly sliced
- 1 tsp salt, or to taste (it was quite salty)
Fry onion and garlic in butter and oil for a couple of minutes in a large frypan. Add the remaining ingredients and fry over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 30 minutes or until cabbage is cooked and a little crispy around the edges.
Dukkah Roasted Eggplants and Beetroot
- 2 japanese eggplants, diced
- 1 beetroot diced
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 heaped tsp dukkah
Toss eggplants and beetroot with oil and dukkah in a roasting dish. Roast for 50-60 minutes at 230 C until dark and soft.
Purple Passionate Pine Pom Juice
Makes about 2 glasses
- ½ pineapple, trimmed and chopped
- pulp of 1 passionfruit
- arils of ¾ pomegranate
- ½ punnet (60g) blueberries
Blend till mushy. Strain through a fine mesh sieve, using the bottom of a glass or other objects to push the juice through quickly. Discard the pulp left behind in sieve. Drink the juice and enjoy!
On the stereo:
Vauxhall and I: Morrissey