Wednesday, December 30, 2009

What do vegans eat?

Ok so here is my first attempt at the new format.... my attempt to answer the question:

What do vegans eat?

Of course the answer is "normal food" but still non-vegans have a hard time envisioning a vegan meal without a gaping hole where their meat would be. Now bear in mind that I am visiting my in-laws for the holidays so my meals are slightly different than they are at home but not much.

Here is what I have eaten (so far) today:

Toaster Waffles
Whole Soy yogurt

While I don't like to rely heavily on packaged, processed food; when I travel it often makes life easier for the people I am staying with. So my breakfast toaster waffles were a nice treat, supplied by my inlaws. I eat them without syrup but my (non-vegan) husband likes them with the works maple syrup, cinnamon, sugar and butter....

The whole soy brand yogurt is the best vegan yogurt (in my humble opinion) and unlike some brands it is totally vegan. Many of the soy yogurts are made with dairy cultures.

A starfruit


A Garden Salad topped with chicken-style tofu salad (recipe below)

I am a salad freak and as such I have found the easiest thing to do is to make a big salad and keep it in the fridge. That way it is always available and easy as a side dish or snack. I can add additional stuff to it like a scoop of tofu salad or some kidney beans as well for a heartier lunch. Having a salad always available also boosts my overall nutrition for the day. I find that when the salads and veggies are easily available everyone is more likely to eat them instead of chips or cookies when hunger strikes. As weird as it seems to non-vegans, it is possible to be an unhealthy, junk-food vegan.


Garden salad with edamame and a ginger-orange vinaigrette (recipe below)
Pasta with sauce

When visiting family, I feel like it is a service to both veganism and my hosts to attempt to eat as much "normal" food as possible. So when my mother in law suggested pasta with sauce, I was thrilled. There are so many commercial jarred sauces that are available at the market which are "accidentally" vegan. So tonight's dinner was pasta with Francesco Rinaldi sauce and everyone was pleased. Check the jars though, not every marinara is vegan. Many contain cheeses or meats.

Now for the recipes:

Tofu salad- "chicken style"

In a bowl, combine the following ingredients:
  • Tofu, cubed (Bryanna's chicken style is especially good)
  • celery, chopped
  • onion or scallions, chopped
  • sweet red bell pepper, chopped
  • carrots, finely cubed
  • pickles or a seeded cucumber cubed
  • vegan maynaise
  • crunchy mustard
  • Thyme, rosemary, sage, to taste
  • salt and pepper

Mix to taste and mash a bit. I like this with crackers, on bread, on a salad. Just about anywhere.

Ginger-Orange Vinaigrette

In a jar combine and shake well:
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 3 TBS sesame oil
  • 1/4 cup (or less... I like less) peanut oil
  • 2-3 TBS minced ginger
  • 1 tsp agave nectar
  • 2-3 TBS low sodium soy sauce

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