Trashion, Upcycling, Recycling, Recrafting, Reconstucting clothes

Whatever you want to call it, making something new out of old clothes can be fun and unique. You may of noticed some of the blogs I follow or am subscribed to are blogs to do with this subject. I haven't done any sewing for a long time, but have been working part time in a sewing and craft shop for a few weeks and the bug is starting to surface again. So far I have resisted buying any fabric or crafts as much as there is some lovely things. However after being offered some free patterns at the weekend, I shall be indulging soon and I will show you some of my creations. I am going to try to buy my material/clothes (for the fabric) from charity shops, but with the occasional new piece of fabric from work, as one of the patterns is crying out for a particular fabric that we stock and the top should only cost about two quid to make hopefully and is just like one that I saw in a fashion shop last week. (Yes, I do look in the shops, even though I rarely buy! I have a £10 gift voucher for a fashion store that I got given recently and I still can't decide what to spend it on, so I will just keep looking weekly until I decide.)

Some of the projects that I have my eye on trying, I will share with you now, as it could take me some time to get round to doing them all and you might just want to indulge in this great hobbie too.

The Anti-Ugg Boot: 10 DIY Boots and Slippers You Can Make Making boots and slippers from old sweaters and upcycled materials are a toasty warm DIY solution for keeping the chill at bay. I especially like the sweater boots.

Making mittens and a hat out of a jumper

Making a cardigan top out of a jumper

Tardis tissue box cover

CD earrings and necklace

I used cut up CDs so many times in my card making and other craft projects, but not jewellery, so I look forward to trying this one.

Using free printable labels to decorate tins or jars etc

Velvet slippers

Mushroom loaf

I love to make dishes out of leftovers. I am often left with a pile of bread slice middles (hubbie loves to snack on the crusts!) and mushroom stalks and or mushrooms that were just not fresh enough for salad. So the other day, I decided to see what else was lurking in the fridge and cupboards that needed using up. There was one leek that was looking sad, I had bought several reduced, this was the last one to use up. I also had some dried soya mince that needed using, out out of date, just I only like using frozen in my mince style dishes. I also had some instant mash that I had been given and some dried apricots that were past there best. So this is what was created.

Mushroom Loaf

2 oz bread pieces torned up or breadcrumbs (this was 3 crustless slices of granary bread, but any would be suitable and more could be used.)
1 leek, chopped
8 oz mushrooms, chopped small
1 tbsp vegetable oil
4 oz dried soya mince
12 fl oz hot water with 1 tbsp yeast extract mixed in.
8 dried apricots chopped up
instant potato mash to thicken
sash black pepper
about heaped tsp dried mixed herbs

I used a silicon loaf pan, so I didn't need to grease it, but if using a tin, grease first. The loaf will be cooked at 180C which is gas 4 or 350F.
Firstly I fried the leek and mushrooms in the oil. Then I added the water/yeast extract, apricots and soya mince. Then after 5 minutes, I took off the heat and added the pepper and herbs and enough instant mash to thicken, mixing well. I then popped it into the pan and baked for about 1 hour.

This was delicious, I love the mix of mushrooms and apricots. I have had the mushroom roast hot with veggies, cold with salad and as a pate sandwich filling.

If you make a loaf like this, if its too sloppy you can add several things to thicken such as instant mash, leftover mash, breadcrumbs, 'breadcrumbs' made from ryvita, breadsticks, weetabix, other cereal. If its too dry add any liquid such as stock, soya sauce, soya milk, water, juice, depending on what you think might go best with the flavours.

Themed food ideas

Some people still think that vegans have a restricted diet. If you still think this, see this post for ideas. There is so much choice from all over the world such as:

Mexico - Beans, tortillas, guacamole and salsa

India - vegetable curries, chickpea curries, dhals, onion bhagis, spinach pakoras, chapaties, naan bread

East Asia - Tofu stir fry and rice

Italy - pastas, salads, foccacia, pizza without the cheese. Its also easy to make vegan versions of lasagne and pesto

Turkey - hummus, babaanoush, falafels, tabouli salad, pita bread

France - french onion soup with french bread, spinach salad and french dressing, green bean and potato salad, roasted garlic puree, ratatouille.

Mediterranean - Tuscan bean soup, breads, spicy couscous, risottos and olives

Thailand - Tofu pad Thai, noodles and rice

and the list goes on...........

Of course vegan versions exist for lots of meaty items like haggis, burgers, sausages, sausage rolls, fishfingers, cheese, mince etc - so its easy to do vegan version so lots of countries traditional foods and of course there is so many vegan recipes to veganise items such as quiches, irish soda bread, flans, cottage pie etc

So why not have fun and theme your meals around coutries/areas of the world for a change and see what you can come up with.

Savoury birthday cake!!

It was my brother in laws birthday last week and he doesn't eat sweet food, so I made him a savoury birthday cake!

The cake was chickpea and chestnut bake, sandwiched together with homemade houmous, topped with houmous and olives and a red pepper heart! As he loved the bake at Christmas and his favourite food is black olives, I thought this would be the ideal combination and he enjoyed it too. Double the recipe for the cake version.

Slice of cake with salad anyone!!!

This is part of 'Healthy Vegan Fridays' over at Green Thickies

healthy vegan friday #21