Today we take a break in my usual rambles on fashion to celebrate World Vegan Day with recipes and tips! Disclaimer: I am not a dietitian and I am not a chef. If I say something that worries you health-wise, let me know because it’ll probably worry me also.Ever since I was a kid, when I would help my mother bake silly-cake-things but never pay any attention to the important parts (AKA the cooking) I wanted to be able to walk into a kitchen and throw something together without a recipe. While I’m not quite there yet I’ve become pretty darn good at taking bits and pieces from other people’s recipes and creating my own little-Frankenstein meals. It’s all due to my becoming a vegetarian almost seven years ago and subsequently becoming a vegan one year ago. As a vegan, you can’t always walk into a supermarket and buy something off the shelf to throw into the oven.
If you guys are interested in some of my own recipes let me know. I don’t own a blender (which is why I usually have to pick and choose from other vegan recipes) and I cook for my rather picky non-vegan partner who always makes sure to let me know if he doesn’t like something.
|Sary-Walrus vegan creations!|
That feel when I spell Thai* wrong. But I suppose this is a great place to note that I cook Thai as well as I can spell it. The above dish is named as such because it was developed from a Thai inspired recipe called Oil-free Mushroom, Potato & Sesame Thai Stir-Fry. My version of the dish is a mix of the above mentioned stir-fry and The Perfect Vegan Lentil Stew. I don’t often have the time to soak and simmer dried lentils, instead I use canned. They cook really fast but have the disadvantage of not being able to soak up the sauce. Which is where the rice noodles in the stir-fry t recipe come in!
My version of Oh She Glows’ Time Crunch Enchiladas is still in the works. Corn tortilla’s just do not want to be my friend. They prefer to crumple into a mess that I’ve aptly named enchi-lasagna. But I borrowed some parts of her recipe that have completely revolutionised the amount of meals I can cook.
I mentioned earlier that I do not have a blender (actually I can’t keep a blender in the house at all). So all those fancy vegan cheese sauces made of almonds and chickpeas are useless to me. Up until recently I refused cooking meals that require a cheese replacement (none of the supermarkets in a ten kilometer radius even know what vegan cheese is). Until I came upon the super easy enchilada recipe for cheese sauce and their guide to vegan friendly cheese sauces that do not require a blender. They’re super easy to adjust to anyone’s palate and if bucket loads of hummus sounds terrifying, you might be surprised with how different it tastes after it’s been cooked.
Lastly, some of my super-simple tips are:
- Always have a set of your go-to spices to fall back on that work with most meals. Mine are basil, oregano, thyme, pepper and cayenne pepper.
- Don’t underestimate store bought bases like curry paste.
- I always use vegetable stock instead of water. It’s a simple way to sneak in more vegetable nutrition. It’s hard to eat five servings of vegetables a day!
- Combine a liquid (almond milk or vegetable stock) and flour to make the easiest ever sauce or sauce base. It’s the perfect base for adding spices into to create a sauce to your taste.
- BBQ sauce makes everything taste better. Honestly, sometimes a flat meal or a super spicy meal just needs something sweet to balance it out. If BBQ sauce isn’t your thing you could use sweet chilli sauce, cinnamon, or add peaches – peaches go with everything savory or sweet.
- Just add hummus.
Today is the first day away from the torture of assessments. (AKA my first day of holidays!) Which I’ll spending making vegan gingerbread men with Halloween cookie cutters. I wanted to make them before Halloween but before mentioned torture put my plans behind schedule. How are you celebrating World Vegan Day?