Quick & Easy is the fifth cookbook from Ella Mills, or Deliciously Ella as she’s known. The cookbooks are just part of the Deliciously Ella brand which includes a blog, app, deli, consumable range of snacks, frozen foods and cereals and podcast. I’ve followed her blog for years and trust it to find plant-based recipes that are packed not only with nutrients but also flavour. I’m also a regular listener of her podcast (a fantastic listen for all things health and wellness), through which I’ve come to appreciate her approach to health and wellness. An approach that uses science not fads to make healthy habits and a diet that is focused on fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts and seeds for nutrition not expensive potions and cleanses.
Quick and Easy is part cookbook, part educational guide to living healthier in a sustainable and practical way. Each chapter begins with a few pages on a topic like “how to make healthy easy, more affordable and sustainable”, “finding balance” and “body image and self-acceptance”. Ella understands that eating healthy isn’t easy for most people and she’s committed herself to creating recipes that are really “Quick & Easy” and for the most part contain readily available ingredients. I love that her recipes are truly nutritious without being bland – she shows that healthy and delicious are words that can and should be used together. She uses spices, herbs and cooking methods like roasting to create delicious plant-based flavour bombs.
Quick and Easy comprises over 100 vegan recipes split into meal categories as well as time. There’s breakfast, dips and dressings, big batch, sweets, weekend, 10-15 minute recipes and 20-30 minute recipes. I’ve already made my way through a handful of her recipes including the best potato salad I’ve made, a quinoa risotto and a mushroom kale salad. The only allergen to take note of is nuts – the majority of the recipes do contain nuts but in most they are easily left out or substituted. For fans of Deliciously Ella, it’s a must have but it is also a great cookbook for vegans or anyone who wants to incorporate more plants into their diet.
The recipe I’m sharing is her Pulled Aubergine Dip – a delicious combination of aubergine, sundried tomatoes, roasted garlic and a few other pantry staples. It’s now on my regular dip rotation and has convinced me that garlic should always be roasted when it goes into a dip. The only change I made was halving the amount of maple syrup and leaving out the pine nuts which she used to top the dip with.
Pulled Aubergine Dip from Deliciously Ella’s Quick & Easy
- 4 aubergines also known as eggplant
- 2 tablespoons tahini
- 2 tablespoon almond butter
- 1 lemon juiced
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 250 grams sundried tomatoes chopped into 1cm pieces
- 3 garlic cloves roasted
- handful parsley roughly chopped
- Heat your oven to its highest setting.
- Use a fork to prick the aubergines all over. Place on a baking tray. Place the garlic cloves on a piece of tin foil, drizzle with some olive oil. Wrap it up and place on the same baking tray as the aubergines. Grill for 20 minutes, turning the aubergines now and then until the outside is charred and black and the inside is soft. Set aside to cool.
- Put the tahini into a large bowl. Add the almond butter, lemon juice, maple syrup and a pinch of salt. Whisk until smooth. Mix the tomatoes and garlic together in a separate bowl.
- Once the aubergines have cooled, cut them in half, then use a fork to pull the cooked flesh from the skins. Discard the skins.
- Place the aubergine flesh in the bowl of the tahini dressing and add in half of the tomato mixture. Toss everything together well.
- Place the aubergine mixture on a serving plate and top with the rest of the tomato mixture.
- Sprinkle parsley on top with a drizzle of olive oil before serving.
Quick & Easy was given to us by Jonathan Ball Publishers and is available here. Jonathan Ball Publishers nor the author approved or reviewed this piece prior to publication. Opinions + images are our own. Recipe is reprinted with permission.
Zissy is the co-founder of Nutreats. She likes to make things, do things and wear things.