What is veganism?
Vegans, like vegetarians do not eat any kind of meat or animal. However, unlike vegetarians, vegans also refrain from eating eggs, dairy products and processed foods made with any of these products as well as gelatin. Most vegans also avoid all foods and products tested on animals.
So what do vegans eat? Vegans dine on grains, beans, legumes, nuts, fruits, vegetables, and recipes that include these foods. There is also a large range of products made from vegan products that resemble meats such as vegan hot dogs, vegan chicken nuggets, vegan ice cream and vegan cheese.
If you are a meat-eater, you may be wondering how you could possibly get enough protein and be satisfied with an animal-free diet. A well-balanced vegan diet includes protein-rich foods like legumes, beans, tofu, nuts and seeds, and plenty of grains, fruits and veggies to healthfully fill you up.
Satisfying vegan-friendly recipes
Vegan Blueberry Pancakes
Makes 3 servings
- Squeeze of fresh lemon juice
- 1 cup soy milk
- 1/2 cup whole grain buckwheat flour
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- Pinch of salt
- 1 slightly heaping teaspoon of egg replacer
- 1 tablespoon melted vegan margarine
- 1/4 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen, thawed
- Maple syrup
1. Squeeze lemon juice into soy milk and let it sit to thicken. Combine flours, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl.
2. Pour a little bit of the soy milk into a bowl and whisk in egg replacer. Whisk in the margarine. Add soy milk mixture to dry ingredients, stirring ingredients until fully combined.
3. Gently fold blueberries into batter and spoon a ladleful of batter onto a hot skillet. Cook until bubbles form, then flip and cook until golden. Serve with maple syrup.
Pumpkin Seed Ravioli
Makes 8 servings
- 1 cup pumpkin seeds, lightly toasted
- 1 cup firmly packed fresh parsley leaves
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 teaspoons miso
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 8 ounces firm tofu
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 package egg-free round or square wonton/dumpling wrappers
1. Combine pumpkin seeds, parsley and garlic in a food processor until minced. Blend in miso, salt and tofu and mix until combined. With motor running, slowly drizzle in oil.
2. Lay wonton wrappers on a flat, lightly-floured surface. Spoon 1 teaspoon of filling in the center of each wrapper and fold wrapper over to make a triangle. Dip your fingers in water and use to seal edges. Continue filling remaining wrappers with filling.
3. Cook ravioli in boiling water for 2 to 4 minutes. Drain and toss with a pinch of salt, pepper and a healthy drizzle of olive oil.
Makes 4 servings
- 2 onions, quartered
- Pinch of minced fresh basil
- Pinch of minced fresh cilantro
- 4 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
- 1 Thai chili, trimmed
- Pinch of vegan oyster sauce
- 2 teaspoons of wasabi (optional)
- 1 stick of lemon grass, finely chopped
- 2 large cloves of garlic
- Sea salt
- Black pepper
- Juice of 1 small lime
- 1/2 package vegan chicken-style pieces
- Oil for cooking
- 1 teaspoon dried Thai spices
- Fresh stir-fry vegetables of your choice
- 1 small can of coconut milk
- 2 teaspoons fresh kaffir lime leaves
- 1 teaspoon fresh capers
- 3 bay leaves
- Fresh cilantro
- Fresh spring onions
- Fresh basil
- 4 cups cooked brown rice or noodles
1. Combine onions, basil, coriander, ginger, chili, oyster sauce, wasabi, lemon grass, garlic, salt, pepper and lime juice in a blender or food processor and pulse until a smooth paste is made.
2. Heat peanut or vegetable oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Cook vegan chicken pieces, stirring often, until cooked through. Sprinkle with Thai spices. Mix in the vegetables and continue cooking, stirring, for 5 minutes or until vegetables soften.
3. Stir in the onion paste and cook 1 minute. Add coconut milk, lime leaves, capers and bay leaves. Bring to a simmer and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring, for another 2 to 3 minutes.
4. Remove bay leaves and spoon mixture into a bowl and top with fresh coriander, onions and basil. Serve over rice or noodles.
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