For National Vegetarian Week (15-21 May 2017), it is the perfect occasion for foodies to give exciting new vegetarian food a try and embrace a vegetarian lifestyle for the week. The talented chefs at Royal China in London have revealed their tops tips for how to create delicious, meat-free Cantonese dishes.

Along with the super helpful vegetarian food tips, they have also shared a delicious recipe for Black Sesame ice-cream. Sounds intriguing!

black sesame ice cream

Photo by David Leong via Flickr

Black Sesame Ice Cream Recipe

Serves 4


  • 360ml Double cream
  • 360ml Full fat milk
  • 100 ml Sweet condensed milk or Maple syrup
  • 10g  Castor sugar
  • 4 Egg yolks
  • 60g Roasted grounded black sesame seeds
  • 20g Sesame seeds
  • 20g Chestnut puree
  • 1 tsp Vanilla essence


  1. Toast the sesame seeds in a pan and be careful not to burn them. Then grind the seeds with a pestle and mortar. Set aside
  2. In a mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks with the caster sugar and vanilla essence until smooth.
  3. In a large saucepan, pour in the milk, double cream and sweet condensed milk (maple syrup). Heat up on a low heat, stirring all the ingredients until blended together.
  4. When the temperature reaches about 68°C, pour the mixture slowly into the beaten eggs. Then return the mixture back into the saucepan and place on the heat.  Keep stirring with a wooden spoon, until the mixture becomes custard like and is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon.  Rest in the fridge until cold.
  5. Once the mixture has cooled, fold in the grounded sesame seeds and the chestnut puree.
  6. Pour into the ice-cream machine bowl and finish the process.
  7. Transfer the soft ice cream mixture to a container and freeze for another 1-2 hours or until the ice cream is fully set.

Vegetarian Food Tips: How to make the best Cantonese food!

Fresh is best

Using the freshest ingredients means that half the work is done for you. Asian vegetables such as pak choi, Chinese broccoli, shiitake mushrooms, beansprouts and lotus root have a unique, clean flavour. Cooking with new ingredients that are out of your comfort zone can really take vegetarian food to a whole new level.

Cheng Fun vegetarian food Cantonese dishes

Cheng Fun. Photo via Royal China

Tasty Tofu

Tofu is a great substitute for meat as it is full of protein, meaning you stay fuller for longer. Marinate some tofu in soy sauce, chilli flakes, honey, lemon zest and oil for 2 hours. Cook in a pan on a medium heat until the tofu is golden brown, before topping with the remaining marinade which will act as a sticky glaze.  Vegetarian food never looked so good before!

Egg Tofu

Tofu. Photo via Royal China

Some like it hot

Spices lend themselves well to vegetables, tofu and stir-fries, so vegetarian food doesn’t have to lack flavour. Enjoy the fresh heat of garlic, ginger and chilli by adding them to a stir-fry. Alternatively, the aromatic hum of Chinese five-spice can add extra seasoning to tofu and vegetables.

Spicy pickled vegetables

Spicy pickled vegetables. Photo via Royal China

Souper Broth

Chinese broths are the perfect opportunity to pack your dinner full of vegetables. Vegetable stock, dried mushrooms, spring onion and fresh red chilli can really add an extra dimension to your soup, making it the perfect hearty lunch or light dinner.

dim sum

Dim sum. Photo via Royal China

Sweet Treats

If you are daunted by veg-heavy dishes, then perhaps something sweet would be more up your street. A tropical fruit platter, full of fresh fruits like mango, pineapple, melon and kiwi, is simple but will be a hit with friends and family.

egg custard tarts

Custard tarts. Photo via Royal China

Also Read: 

This vegetarian soup & dumplings recipe is every organic food lover’s delight

Egg Custard Tart Recipe: For buttery baked goodness