What is veganism?
The nature of our modern diets has led some to believe that meals are not hearty without meat. Nothing could be further from the truth. Those who have chosen to be vegetarians or vegans, as well as chefs, restaurant owners and cookbook authors have designed many ways to combine food into tasty vegan recipes. The diets of vegans are considered more restrictive than that of vegetarians who may still eat eggs, milk and cheese. To adhere to a vegan diet, people chose to avoid meat, poultry, fish, and eggs, milk and other dairy products as well as abstain from the use of animal by-products such as honey, whey, casein and gelatin.
Considering the list of foods to avoid as a vegan, someone could conclude that there would be little left to eat and that preparing a tasty vegan recipe would be quite challenging. Nothing could be further from the truth. There are thousands of edible plants, seeds, tubers and grains that can be blended to create a delicious, nutritious meal. There are some simple tips from popular chefs and cookbook authors that can be used as a guide to create tasty vegan recipes at home.
Tips for a vegan diet
The first tip is to consume more whole foods that should include fresh fruit and vegetables, and considering where appropriate to consumption of organic versions and eating in season and local products. The second tip is to add whole grains, such as quinoa, brown rice, wheat and oats to the diet to boost fiber and to combine avocado, nuts, oils and fruits as a way to include more proteins and calories to the diet. A tasty vegan recipe may be as simple as using cooked quinoa adding toasted walnuts or almonds, minced oranges or berries and finishing it off a bit of walnut oil, a splash of fruit vinegar and minced fresh mint leaves.
The third tip focuses on simple approaches to making the transition to a vegan diet easier. Modifying a favorite dish with one or more substitution can convert a craving into a tasty vegan recipe for delicious and hearty eating. There are many ways to recreate a favorite recipe that asks for cheese or dairy by replacing the cheese in a pasta dish with toasted pine nuts or switching out the dairy in a cream sauce with almond or soymilk. It is an absolute must to play with your food to re-create some tasty vegan recipes from old standbys.
The fourth tip is to make your meals meatier without meat by using mushrooms, tofu, beans, lentils and seitan and tempeh. These alternatives can be found online, in whole food groceries and with their growing popularity in conventional grocery chains as well. Portabello mushrooms can be grilled then topped with tomatoes, lettuce and pickles or avocado and put on a bun creating a vegan burger. Beans and lentils can be cooked whole or pureed to make tasty vegan recipes for dips or sauces. Seitan and tempeh can be sautéed with mushroom gravy and combined with as side of quinoa and blanched asparagus for a hearty dinner.