There are two times in the year when we think about new starts and new resolutions; beginning of the year and after the summer holiday.

The latter is usually a challenging time for many of us, where we feel sad and heavy hearted to bid farewell to our summer days and nights, with nowhere to hide now from lingering work issues, college commitments or kids’ school routines.

You may also notice that for some reason the last couple of weeks in summer things tend to get out of track, ditching our healthy diets and workout routines either for travel reasons or simply to make the most of summer’s last days.

I am not a vegan and I don’t think I’ll ever be one, but I must admit that vegan recipes are getting more delicious and interesting – no one can deny the effect of vegan diets on body and skin. I wouldn’t ask you to go on 3-5 day detox plan which I can easily write down, putting you on juices mostly and making you miserable by the day.

Well, you know by now that I am all for enjoying healthy satisfying food options. So, I thought there is no better way for resetting your body and mind after overindulging and binging on some nasty food and drinks than going vegan for a week or two.

I will simply present to you some wholesome recipes which are non-dairy, meat free and more importantly sugar free, without even adding honey -just to allow our body gently and slowly to take a needed break that will relieve our digestive system, mind and soul altogether.

You can, of course, your food up with soothing teas and healthy smoothies – no harm in that!

Morning Tonic:

Start your day and boost your metabolism with these easy tonics.

Two options

• 1 tbsp lemon juice – pinch of cayenne pepper – tsp grated fresh ginger – 1 cup warm water

• 1-2 tbsp apple cider vinegar – 1 tbsp lemon juice – tsp grated fresh ginger – tsp cinnamon – 1 cup warm or cold water

Smoothie Bowls: (Serves 1)

Transforming delicious smoothies into wholesome meals with fresh toppings – Tuck in!

Mango Ginger

Base: 1 Cup Mango cubes – 2 Cups Spinach – tsp Ginger –200 ml Coconut Milk (all whizzed in a strong blender)

Toppings: Raw Almonds – Coconut Shavings – Pumpkin Seeds – Mango Cubes

Pear Detox

Base: 1 Pear – 1 Orange – 2 cups Kale – 200 ml Almond Milk (all whizzed in a strong blender)

Toppings: Walnuts – Goji Berries – Flaxseeds

Very Berry

Base: 1 Banana – cup Blue Berries – 1 Orange –200 ml Almond Milk

(all whizzed in a strong blender)

Toppings: Raw Almonds – Strawberries – Pumpkin Seeds

Avocado Chocolate Mousse: (Serves 4)

A sinfully creamy chocolate mousse made from dark cocoa, avocados and natural sweeteners – dairy free and gluten free.

• Shopping Basket: 3 tbsp dark cocoa powder, sugar-free – cup maple syrup or 1 tbsp stevia–2 large ripe avocados – 3 to 4 tbsp almond milk – tsp vanilla syrup – pinch of salt.

1. Put all ingredients in the food processor.

2. Whiz until blended smoothly. Divide among small ramekins and let it set in the fridge for 2 hours at least. Indulge freely!

Vegan Laksa: (Serves 4)

An aromatic Malaysian noodle soup bowl that will fire up your senses leaving its mark on both your heart and clothes, no matter how many times I try to avoid the massacre when devouring it! It’s a deliciously messy dish that will get you craving for more whenever you get the chance.

• Paste Shopping Basket: 2 medium shallots– 4 red chillies – 5 garlic cloves – 2 lemongrass stalks – 2 tbsp fresh grated ginger – 2 tbsp sesame oil – 1 tsp ground turmeric – 1 tsp ground coriander – 5 Kaffir lime leaves – 1 tsp paprika.

• Shopping Basket: 1 can full fat coconut milk – 4 cups of dissolved vegetable stock – pan-fried tofu  – juice of a lemon – Handfuls of steamed broccoli, Bok Choy and spinach – 200g bean sprouts, cleaned and blanched – 200g flat rice noodles, soaked in cold water until soft – handful of fresh coriander leaves, chopped.

1. Start by blending all paste ingredients in the food processor, until smooth texture.

2. Heat the oil and stir-fry the paste for about 1 min, add coconut milk and stock then simmer for 5 min.

3. Stir in the noodles and all vegetables, simmer for 2-3 min then sprinkle with fresh coriander leaves when serving. Dive in!

Grilled Cinnamon Pineapples: (Serves 4)

Why complicate matters?! This must be the easiest yet sumptuous enough dessert to wow your taste buds. Enjoy!

• Shopping Basket: 2 large pineapples – cup maple syrup –1 tbsp cinnamon – pinch of salt.

1. Cut the pineapples into long segments and put into bamboo skewers.

2. Mix the cinnamon, maple syrup and salt; then drizzle over the skewers and rub them thoroughly. 3. Grill for 3 to 4 mins until brown and charred on both sides. You can serve with a sprinkle of dried or fresh shredded coconut and coconut cream. Yum!