Creole Seasoning

Let your imagination run wild with this creole seasoning – don’t feel limited by its traditional uses!

I’ll be using this in some future recipes, but in case you’re feeling a bit stumped in the meantime, this can be used as a dry rub, to flavour soups and various other dishes (even scrambled tofu!) and to make sauces. The most recent sauce I made with this included tomato paste, fresh chopped tomatoes, balsamic vinegar and water blended together with some of the seasoning. It was an impressive, quick throw together, but unfortunately I don’t have any quantities for you.

The vegetable “holy trinity” of creole cuisine is considered to be onion, capsicum (bell pepper) and celery – those veggies are a good place to start with this if you’re feeling unsure.

Creole Seasoning
Yields 1 Heaped Cup

2 TBSP Onion Powder
2 TBSP Garlic Powder
2 TBSP Dried Oregano
2 TBSP Dried Basil
1 TBSP Dried Thyme
1 TBSP Cayenne Pepper
1 TBSP Celery Seed
5 TBSP Sweet Paprika
1.5 TBSP Mixed Peppercorns, bashed in a mortar & pestle (I used a black/white/red mix)

  • Mix together all above ingredients and store in an air tight, glass jar.

Mr. Natural

Mr. Natural – Gourmet Vegetarian Pizza
223 Barkly St
St Kilda, VIC
P: 03 9534 2542

*Also at 469 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy Nth, VIC 3065

Mr. Natural Front

I’ve got to admit – I’ve driven past Mr. Natural’s Fitzroy North store several times but never bothered stopping in; I guess I was judging a book by its cover. It didn’t look like anything special from the outside, and how exciting can a vegetarian pizza be? VERY EXCITING, AS IT TURNS OUT. I was sorely mistaken.

Last night, Mr. AA & I headed to Melbourne to see rock ‘n’ roll legend Budy Guy in concert at The Palais. We made a last minute decision to go to Lentil as Anything for dinner, but it was tiny and packed. There was nowhere for us to sit, so we went across the road to Mr. Natural. It was a last minute decision (and a good one!); please excuse the dodgy mobile phone photos!

Mr. Natural Inside

It’s a small, intimate venue. I expected it to be buzzing, but then again, it was a Tuesday night. We were the only ones dining in, but there was a constant stream of take-away orders being made. These guys accept online orders as well as phone orders – talk about getting with the times! I was impressed.

The menu was far more exciting than I was expecting it to be – I was actually having trouble making a decision. Truth be told, I’m used to being in that annoying position of walking into a pizza shop and ordering the vegetarian pizza without cheese. Yep; I can do it with my eyes closed. And you always get the same ol’ toppings. They get very old very quickly.

As it turns out, the two pizzas I was interested in are exclusive to the St. Kilda store and not on the online menu. I asked for the dal pizza but it wasn’t available just yet (the dal was still being made and OHMYGOD it smelled amazing!); the wonderful man behind the counter recommended the Mexican pizza instead, which was my second choice anyway. It sounded a little strange, as it listed bananas and dates in the ingredients, but don’t worry – there aren’t chunks of either on the pizza. I think they may have been mashed and mixed up with the beans.

Mr. Natural Mexican

Again, please excuse the photo. It doesn’t do this pizza justice – it was Mexican, alright. I don’t think I could have been happier. Mr. AA tasted it while I was trying to take a photo and he demanded that I just stop and eat. Well, I could see why. The toppings were just so… Perfect. The Mexican spices mixed in with the beans were just right and very prominent. This pizza was REALLY filling – we struggled to finish off a large between us. These guys definitely aren’t stingy on the ingredients, they really make it worth your while.

Oh – and in case anyone is wondering, gluten free bases are available! YEAH! Also, you have the option of having your pizza topped with rennet free dairy cheese, vegan cheese or tofu. I didn’t actually notice the vegan cheese option until afterwards, so I just asked for tofu. I would have been a bit weary anyway, depending on what brand they used. Vegan cheese isn’t always a winner in my eyes – and you’d wanna know exactly what you’re getting for an extra $3.50 (on a large pizza). And finally… They stock Phoenix soft drinks!

You can’t go wrong. Go and get yourself an amazing pizza. Like, now.


Annnnd finally… Simply because I can’t resist, here’s a photo of Buddy Guy serenading the woman behind me! He left the stage and walked through the venue playing and greeting people. Seventy five years old and still rockin’ it. Bet you wish you were that cool.


Hi Everyone!

Sorry I’ve been MIA – I just arrived home from a fabulous trip in Tasmania, where Mr. AA & I got engaged. I have plenty of updates coming up for you (both eatery reviews and recipes), so stay tuned!

When we arrived in Hobart, even before checking in to our cabin, I insisted on making a special stop for lunch. We’d heard of a place called “Heartfood” via the Happy Cow website, so we made our way into town. Hobart is a surprisingly easy city to navigate – once you have all the one way streets worked out. After 3 days, we felt like locals! Ha.


64 Liverpool Street
Hobart TAS 7000
(03) 6234 2884 ‎

Heartfood is a little take away shop – much smaller than I was expecting – that’s only open for lunch. There’s 4x tables of two in there and a giant floor-to-ceiling mirror to make you feel a little less claustrophobic. Mr. AA & I sat at a table looking out, watching the hustle and bustle of Liverpool St. If you don’t fancy sitting inside, there’s a communal outdoor eating area that all the surrounding eateries share which is just a short walk to the other end of the arcade.


This was the first thing I saw when I walked in and I might have let out a little squeal of excitement when I realised they had sweets I could eat (I’m not kidding). To the right of this was a drinks fridge, which not only stocked Phoenix cola, but also coconut water with no additives (I don’t know about y’all, but I struggle to find coconut water that doesn’t contain sugar – what’s with that?)! To the left was the bain marie, which housed all the hot, savoury options which change daily.


All of the dishes were clearly marked – most of them were both gluten free and vegan. I was having a lot of trouble making a decision, so I chose to try two dishes with rice.


At the back is a tomato/veg/tofu dish. Mild and not overpowering – but not too bland either… Though it seemed pretty dull compared to the amazing coconut milk curry on the left. None of the food was spicy, so if you don’t dig chili, then you’re in for a treat.


This was the vegetarian lasagne (not vegan) and a couple of vegetable pakoras. Mr. AA said these were both excellent and he was thoroughly satisfied!


I have no idea why this is called a “rainbow cookie”, but it was AWESOME. It was like a chewy muesli bar bite with chocolate on top. I might have gone back for another one of these.


I went back on another day during our trip for a take-away lunch (yes, I liked the food that much) and got another great veggie curry! This one was tomato based (not creamy) and comparable to a mild aloo mutter, only with a bigger variety of veggies in it.

I was thoroughly satisfied and impressed and wish there was a Heartfood around the corner from where I work, so could eat there every day! It actually made me a little homesick for Lentil As Anything.

(r)Adelaide: Vego To Go

I want to preface this with an apology about the shitty photos. I was traveling, excited to eat and on this occassion forgot to bring my camera along and had to take photos with my boss’ iPhone. Whoops… Nevertheless, I have plenty to say about my experience!

Vego To Go
Norwood Mall
Shp 12/The Parade
Norwood SA 5067


I’ve gotta tell you guys – when I walked in and saw this cabinet, I just about pissed my pants with excitement. There was a lot of variety and much of it was vegan. To top it off, anything that was vegan was very clearly labeled. This made me oh so happy! The only down side was that my brain switched to over drive and I had no idea what I wanted to order. It’s not often that I go out in public and am faced with more than two choices!

I started off with a rice ball (pictured below). This was about the size of my fist and came with a really yellow-y peanut sauce that got me thinking about all the different peanut sauces I’ve tried in my time. Everyone makes it different! This one was sweet and delicious and really complimented the rice ball which was fairly simple in flavour. On the inside, it seemed to be dotted with flakes or nori and what I suspect was red capsicum. It was GOOD.

Rice Ball

Next, I tried the vindaloo, which was recommended by the girl behind the counter. I’m always up for something fiery, so this excited me! As you can see, there was a variety of veggies in there and the dish was seriously packed with flavour – I loved it. The only let down, for me, was that when I order vindaloo, I expect to walk away with my mouth tingling. Unfortunately, my nose barely ran. I understand WHY they’re conservative with the heat, but I wish they weren’t. That being said, it really was delicious and I wouldn’t give it back.


This is my boss’ Thai green curry. I stole a piece of broccoli out of it, but I didn’t really taste the dish as a whole. What I can tell you is that it smelled great, it was vegan and my boss liked it (and he’s not even remotely veggo).

Thai Green Curry

Finally, these are the veggie balls (vegan) served with a vegetarian mint yoghurt dipping sauce. My co-worker ordered these and while I didn’t taste them, I was assured that they were great! These didn’t look like some kind of run-of-the mill potato-flour based thing – they had a really good variety of mixed veggies in them.

Veggie Balls

The serves at Vego To Go are really decent and won’t leave you hungry – but they will make you somehow want more! The food was really tasty, the labels were clear (from memory, I think GF items were also labeled) and the cutlery was made from bamboo. The only thing I didn’t really like was that it was a small shop which felt crowded even when it wasn’t full but I can’t really complain too much because we scored a quiet table in the corner. I’d just warn you that the set up is more like a take-away shop than a café.

If I hadn’t already planned to visit another place the next day, I would definitely have gone back to try more of the menu. I highly recommend the food here and will drop in again next time I’m in (r)Adelaide!