Those who know me will know I’m ‘vegan-ising’ my diet. I’m using Lent to really give me that push because the taste of cheese was luring me a little bit too much. Most of our homemade meals are already plant based, I’ve been drinking non-dairy milk and cruelty-free butter for about a year, but I haven’t too conscious when eating out or grabbing snacks on-the-go. It takes a lot of research and a lot of self-restraint but so far, so good. I’m not going to go into too much why I’m doing it but I have terrible eczema and my skin is suffering SO BAD and it gets worse after a feta-halloumi-parmesan binge. I’m not here to judge whether you eat meat, eat dairy, if you don’t eat meat but you’re partial to a block of cheddar. This is my choice. I’m getting enough protein, enough calcium, enough of all of the good stuff.
I am a massive advocate for eating and living a healthy lifestyle. Not diets. Diets don’t work. They deprive you of food that’s delicious, they deprive you of moments of joy because you’re too worried to eat some chocolate or something we would consider luxurious. I know because I’ve been there and I’ve done it. I took it to such a massive extreme and it’s something I never want to experience again. I’m still guilty of calling foods ‘naughty’, ‘good’ and ‘bad’ but food is food. Everything in balance is healthy. No restricting. Eating avocados and nuts even though some diet fads tell us to ditch those because there is too much fat involved, telling people to instead eat 50 thousand artificially sweetened yogurts and Fibre One bars. FYI I like those things but they’re not one of my 5 a day, if you get me.
Cutting it short, if you want to see a difference and feel better then you need to change your lifestyle, not go on a fad diet. My skin feels like it’s on fire 24/7, it’s so dry I could sandpaper a wall with it, I scratch it so much that I can’t wash the blood out of the sheets quick enough. It goes through phases of feeling stronger and smoother and I notice it’s when I’m eating more vegetables, more wholegrains and less dairy. Everyone’s bodies are different and mine’s just telling me that I should give this a go. So you’ll be seeing lots of vegan goodies now, goodies that are still incredibly tasty and taste just like the ‘real thing’. Not only is it benefiting my body, it’s doing worlds of good for the animals and the environment. Give it a go, every bit helps
Recipe from Minimalist Baker
for the cakes/
- 1 cup dairy-free milk (I used almond milk) mixed with 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup vegan butter, I use Flora Freedom
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup rainbow sprinkles (make sure the brand you use are vegan friendly!)
for the frosting/
- 1/2 cup vegan butter
- 2 1/2 – 3 cups powdered sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- splash of non-dairy milk
- Preheat the oven to 170C and line a cupcake tray with 12 fairy cake liners.
- In a measuring cup, combine the milk and apple cider vinegar and then set aside to activate. There will be bubbles in the surface.
- Cream together the butter, sugar and vanilla in a mixer (or with strong arms) until soft and fluffy for about 2-4 minutes.
- Sift the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt over the butter mixture, alternating with the milk mixture. Mix until all the lumps have gone.
- Pour in the sprinkles and gently fold through.
- Pour the batter into the cake liners, 3/4 full and bake for 20-25 minutes. They should be a very light golden colour.
- Leave to cool completely before icing.
- FOR THE FROSTING/ Add the butter and mix until light and fluffy. Mix through the vanilla and then add the powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time until really thick. Add a dash of milk to thin in slightly but it should be firm enough to hold it’s shape.
- Frost the cakes and sprinkle on some sprinkles!