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BS: Vegan mudcatters

Steve Shaw 23 Sep 15 - 05:36 AM
Stilly River Sage 22 Sep 15 - 10:26 PM
Stanron 22 Sep 15 - 09:34 PM
Steve Shaw 22 Sep 15 - 07:01 PM
Steve Shaw 22 Sep 15 - 06:57 PM
Steve Shaw 22 Sep 15 - 02:57 PM
GUEST,CS 22 Sep 15 - 09:23 AM
Steve Shaw 14 Aug 15 - 07:19 PM
Steve Shaw 14 Aug 15 - 07:07 PM
GUEST,CS 14 Aug 15 - 01:16 PM
Steve Shaw 14 Aug 15 - 05:31 AM
GUEST,CS 14 Aug 15 - 03:12 AM
GUEST,CS 07 Mar 15 - 06:15 AM
GUEST,CS 01 Mar 15 - 02:42 AM
GUEST,CS 25 Feb 15 - 01:17 PM
GUEST,sciencegeek 25 Feb 15 - 10:49 AM
Stilly River Sage 25 Feb 15 - 10:40 AM
Stilly River Sage 24 Feb 15 - 05:02 PM
GUEST,CS 24 Feb 15 - 01:49 PM
GUEST,CS 22 Feb 15 - 02:35 AM
GUEST 22 Feb 15 - 02:17 AM
GUEST 22 Feb 15 - 02:13 AM
Stilly River Sage 22 Feb 15 - 12:35 AM
GUEST,CS 21 Feb 15 - 11:18 AM
GUEST 21 Feb 15 - 09:41 AM
GUEST,CS 21 Feb 15 - 09:36 AM
GUEST 21 Feb 15 - 04:00 AM
GUEST,CS 21 Feb 15 - 03:55 AM
Stilly River Sage 20 Feb 15 - 07:18 PM
GUEST,CS 24 Dec 14 - 08:39 AM
GUEST,CS 27 Nov 14 - 04:03 AM
GUEST,CS 27 Nov 14 - 04:01 AM
GUEST,sciencegeek 19 Nov 14 - 11:01 AM
GUEST,Steve Shaw 19 Nov 14 - 05:14 AM
GUEST,CS 19 Nov 14 - 02:57 AM
GUEST,CS 19 Nov 14 - 02:52 AM
Stilly River Sage 18 Nov 14 - 02:20 PM
GUEST,sciencegeek 18 Nov 14 - 08:57 AM
GUEST,Steve Shaw, Italiophile 17 Nov 14 - 06:32 PM
GUEST,CS 17 Nov 14 - 06:19 AM
Stilly River Sage 16 Nov 14 - 11:46 AM
GUEST,Steve Shaw spellchecked 16 Nov 14 - 06:36 AM
GUEST,Steve Shaw, gastronomically flummoxed 16 Nov 14 - 06:31 AM
GUEST,CS 16 Nov 14 - 04:19 AM
Stilly River Sage 11 Nov 14 - 02:14 PM
GUEST,CS 11 Nov 14 - 01:18 PM
GUEST,CS 11 Nov 14 - 01:11 PM
Musket 11 Nov 14 - 01:07 PM
Stilly River Sage 11 Nov 14 - 11:20 AM
GUEST,CS 11 Nov 14 - 03:15 AM
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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 23 Sep 15 - 05:36 AM

Thanks for the defence, Acme, clearly a fellow aficionado of the cheesy comestibles. I love this thread, but if needs be I could always start a subsidiary "not-quite-veggie" thread...   :-)


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Sep 15 - 10:26 PM

Because the thread strays into interesting eddies every so often, Stanron. Just skip what doesn't appeal to you.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stanron
Date: 22 Sep 15 - 09:34 PM

I am not a vegan but I am perplexed as to why someone would post details of eating fish and cheese on a vegan thread if not just to be mischievous.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 22 Sep 15 - 07:01 PM

Also, cholesterol is exclusively an animal product, so no plant food will contain cholesterol, not even a huge sack of greasy kettle chips. Though my potatoes do when I mash 'em, owing to the disturbingly large amount of butter I beat into them.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 22 Sep 15 - 06:57 PM

Not a medical expert, but here's what I've gleaned today. Foods high in cholesterol such as eggs need not be avoided for their cholesterol content. Eating cholesterol will not affect your blood cholesterol level. It's eating a lot of saturated fat that will raise cholesterol, as will being overweight, being sedentary and having a genetic disposition (even vegetarians with the latter will have high cholesterol).   Of course, some foods can be high in both cholesterol and saturated fats. But a life without cheese for me is unimaginable. My latest cheese discovery that I need to get over is Montagnolo affine, a soft, creamy blue that, oddly, comes from Germany.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 22 Sep 15 - 02:57 PM

Italians never use Parmesan on fish pasta dishes. Our three favourites are tuna in olive oil, roughly broken up, with garlic, capers and creme fraiche (or cream, but we like the tang), sprinkled with chopped fresh parsley; salmon arrabbiata (plenty of home-made tomato sauce with garlic, parsley and a goodly dose of chilli, with rigatoni); and prawns with spaghetti, lemon, garlic, chilli, sundried tomato paste and rocket.   We never use Parmesan on puttanesca either. Just a sprinkling of fresh parsley.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 22 Sep 15 - 09:23 AM

Steve Shaw: "By the way, catch up with recent medical opinion on cholesterol in the diet. Basically, we are worrying about nothing. The cholesterol level in our blood has little to do with cholesterol in the diet. Which isn't to say that we should be gorging on animal fats. Just that we have one less thing to worry about. Google!"

I don't know about needing to Google, but I do know my blood test results. After adopting a low-cholesterol diet for a number of months (under instruction from my Dr.) my cholesterol is down 27% from very high to average. Nothing much else has changed, though if I want to keep improving and not backslide I do need to make greater efforts in stuff like exercise and weight-loss (imposing moderate portion control/calorie deficits).

I'm surprised at how I no longer desire cheese. It used to be my 'pudding' of choice after a meal out, but after having stopped it for so long now, it no longer appeals at all. Either my tastebuds have changed or there's somehing in the theory that casein has 'moreish' addictive components.

I never put cheese on pasta dishes any more. It's either nutritional yeast (for savoury flavour), pangritatta for richness and texture or just a drizzle of EVOO and a sprinkle of sea salt for richness and flavour. The latter is actually my favourite option.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 14 Aug 15 - 07:19 PM

By the way, catch up with recent medical opinion on cholesterol in the diet. Basically, we are worrying about nothing. The cholesterol level in our blood has little to do with cholesterol in the diet. Which isn't to say that we should be gorging on animal fats. Just that we have one less thing to worry about. Google!


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 14 Aug 15 - 07:07 PM

Your grissini with dip sounds very nice. You wouldn't like it my way at all, broken into three-inch lengths with one end wrapped in prosciutto! An essential element in my admittedly carnivorous antipasti repertoire.   But a few bits of grissini to go with my salmorejo is gorgeous. The salmorejo itself is vegan, though it wouldn't seem the same without some chopped hard-boiled egg and a scattering of chopped Serrano ham... However, there are no rules!


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 14 Aug 15 - 01:16 PM

I cut out dairy for two reasons, firstly because it gives me asthma (and I think joint pain as well, though that one's less immediately identifiable) and secondly for the cholesterol content (at least of higher fat products). It's true that the subs contain more ingredients; the milks not so much, but the cheeses certainly. I don't get the cheese but once a month or less though, the vast bulk of my diet is pretty unprocessed (barring home cooking processes) and of the 'plant-based whole-foods' variety.

Today I've had a happy afternoon in the kitchen knocking up whole wheat grissini with butter bean, parsley and horseradish dip for evening snacking (he asked me to order a box of crisps and I said nope, I'll make something healthy instead - crisps disappear too quickly in this house). Tomato vinaigrette to go in the fridge ready for pasta salad this weekend. I've also made chunky corn chowder for our suppers.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 14 Aug 15 - 05:31 AM

We use unsweetened soya milk a lot, but I can't stand it in tea or coffee. Great for cereals and porridge though even here it adds a pronounced layer of alien flavour that takes getting used to. I like to just drink it on its own too. Your subs are, on the whole, replacing natural products with artificial concoctions. There's nothing natural about margarine, despite the efforts of the industry to rid it of trans fats. The oils often have to be deodorised and coloured up, as well as hydrogenated, to make them plausibly like butter. I've yet to taste one that doesn't have me thinking I should be using it on my bike hubs instead of my sandwiches. The Cornish butter I buy contains just one natural ingredient. Not even salt for me. It's delicious!


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 14 Aug 15 - 03:12 AM

Just updating with a couple of decent subs for those in the UK who may have trouble finding decent substitutions:

Best chocolate plant milk I've found is Oatly, good and creamy. Though there are a number of good chocolate milks in rice, soya and coconut versions.

Best cream substitute I've found is also Oatly (Tesco, Waitrose and Holland & Barret stock). Plain tasting so ideal for savoury dishes.

Best egg-free mayo I've found is Tarragon & Chive by Plamil, ask your local health food shop. Tangy and rich, pretty good as alternatives go. A slight plasticky back note (a bit like lower fat kinds of mayo have) but it's not prominent.

Best dairy-free cheese I've found is Violife. Available from Tesco. Block or sliced. Slightly nutty flavour. I prefer the sliced version as it's easy for sandwiches.

Tesco also stock a fairly decent own-brand range. I like their 'cheddary' spread on crackers, as well as the herby 'cream cheese'. The plain yoghurt is also quite good, though a tad thin.

Best dairy-free butter sub I've found is Pure Sunflower (no trans-fats or chemical additives. Available in all major supermarkets.

Unsweetened soya milk is pretty good for most things. Though almond milk is better if you dislike the chalky flavour characteristic of soya. Get unsweetened for savoury dishes.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 07 Mar 15 - 06:15 AM

I'm baking more granola and vegan fruit cake today. Once I get a recipe I like, I keep using it again and again. I like safe recipes!


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 01 Mar 15 - 02:42 AM

I adapted that vegan cake a bit and made another one yesterday with cranberries and walnuts in.

Cranberry and Walnut Loaf Cake

Oven 180C / 2lb loaf tin

Beat 4oz margarine with 8oz brown sugar and 8oz apple sauce (I used cheapo supermarket own brand stuff).
Then beat in 14oz self-raising wholemeal flour, 7floz soya milk plus 2tbsp lemon juice.
Mix in 4oz dried cranberries and 2oz chopped walnuts.
Pour into greased & lined loaf tin and bake for about 1&1/2 hours (mine took a little longer but my oven is funny).
(Cover in parchment or foil half way through baking if it's looking too brown.)

Turn out and cool before cutting.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 25 Feb 15 - 01:17 PM

One of our favourite filling midweek meals tonight. Veggie chilli made with vegetarian soya mince (the standard frozen stuff from the supermarket) lots of chunky chopped sweet peppers and onions, some sweetcorn, and a rich mole style sauce with cumin, chilli flakes, cinnamon, smoked paprika, cocoa powder, molasses sugar and a little balsamic vinegar for a bit of lift at the end. Served it with mashed spuds for a change, though we usually like tortilla chips.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 25 Feb 15 - 10:49 AM

gumbo can be thickened either with okra or file - ground up sasafrass leaves.

try sliced & breaded okra that's been deep fried and served with ranch dressing for a dipping sauce... very nice.

I'm very fond of tempura style vegetables also with soy sauce based dipping sauces.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Feb 15 - 10:40 AM

As I skimmed through the first of the most recent recovered messages, adding horizontal rules and line breaks, I noticed a couple I missed when they were first posted. I'll have to look into blanching basil, but the way I freeze, I intend to break off and immediately crumble the leaves from the bag so they don't have time to get mushy before the bag is back in the freezer and the herb mixed into the dish. I do freeze pesto (my neighbor makes it and brings me some - I give her the basil).

Okra isn't a peasant food, but it is one of what I call second tier vegetables, like eggplant. You can't just pick it and eat it raw, or steam it and it's ready. Okra isn't slimy if it is soaked in vinegar for a little while. This is a tip that is in one of my Middle Eastern cookbooks. It is an African vegetable and there are special dishes all over Africa and up into Afghanistan and Pakistan that use it in stewed dishes. It can be used to thicken the gumbo here in the US, but there is so much more to it. I'm only beginning to learn myself, since I've started growing it.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 24 Feb 15 - 05:02 PM

I broke up the last two pasted saved files with horizontal rules. With both of them it will be easier to scroll through and see each separate post.

The dog treats seem to be trending among a few friends right now, the topic has come up several times lately on facebook. These high end dog treats are expensive in the store, and they're so easy to make that I'm going to keep making them for my dogs.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 24 Feb 15 - 01:49 PM

We had Aubergine and Pepper Ragu with Pappardelle this evening, and it was pretty darned good.

Really rich and substantial dish, very satisfying on a chilly evening as the ragu was quite thick and chunky, which also perfectly matched the 'meaty' texture of the pappardelle.

I didn't boil the aubergine as per the Waitrose recipe but I sauteed it along with the pepper, as I though boiling it sounded too weird. I also added some sliced green olives; alas no capers but they would have worked a treat too. I also added some leftover homemade vegan spicy Italian sausage, which was an excellent addition.

Next time I'm going to use equal quantities of peppers to aubergines as I think this time, the peppers overwhelmed the ragu somewhat.

I also gave the pappardelle a good drizzle of EVOO on draining, as the ragu was quite thick and dense in texture, so the pasta needed a little oil to keep it loose and moist.

Would've got great with garlic bread if I'd've felt hungry enough to sort out that granary baguette we have sitting in the bread bin..

Nice one! You can find a number of variations on the same theme online, worth giving a go.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 22 Feb 15 - 02:35 AM

Stilly I've heard of quite a few people making their own vegan / vegetarian dog treats.
What a nice idea :)


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Feb 15 - 02:17 AM

4th and final batch:

Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 18 Jan 15 - 10:47 AM

I use naan bread as a base for Pizza, it is perfect for that. I only top it with veg, Peppers, mushrooms, spinach , olives. whatever you like . A few sprinkles of cheese, and a homemade tomato sauce. I think that the secret to the tomato sauce is to put in two anchovie fillets. They give the sauce a really rich flavour. Besides the tomato and fillets, I put in Red Peppers, tomato puree, shallots and a clove of Garlic.
For vegans, you could leave out the cheese and the anchovies.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,Patsy
Date: 18 Jan 15 - 07:38 PM

I love the versatility of a vegetarian or vegan diet which means I can always rustle up a healthy meal and it always ensures me that I am getting the required 5 a day or 7 a day. The Macka B video is similar to the way I think about my diet and the benefits each ingredient is doing for me. Although I am not sure that I could strictly adhere to the no fish or meat totally in life, if I do have that as part of a meal it is only a very small part. On the very rare occasion I do like the odd bacon sandwich and I cannot find an alternative for that if I am honest. But I do think that good education at school about food would also be cost effective. It is food waste that bothers me, if vegetarian or vegan cookery was taught in schools more widespread I am sure that there would be less waste potentially in households and would encourage people to create meals with the contents of the fridge or the store cupboard before shopping for more potential waste. The soups that you can make doing that can make a tasty and wholesome warming meal especially this time of year when it is so easy to get in the junk comfort foods.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 19 Jan 15 - 11:28 AM

Today I made my new 'Spicy Italian' seitan slicing sausage for our lunchbox sarnis, and I think it's surprisingly brill! I flavoured it with vegetable bouillon powder, garlic granules, oregano, tomato puree and chilli flakes. Yum!



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 20 Jan 15 - 03:16 AM

Patsy: "if vegetarian or vegan cookery was taught in schools more widespread I am sure that there would be less waste potentially in households and would encourage people to create meals with the contents of the fridge or the store cupboard before shopping for more potential waste. The soups that you can make doing that can make a tasty and wholesome warming meal especially this time of year when it is so easy to get in the junk comfort foods."

I'd be surprised if anything is taught about vegetarianism at all anywhere including school, as so many people are under the misapprehension that humans absolutely need animal products to be healthy. Or that complete protein is THE most important nutrient in the human diet. Or that our bones will collapse if adult humans don't specifically consume enough of the stuff that mother cows produce for baby cows, which is kind of silly if you think about it.

As for teaching vegetarian cooking I agree that it should be included in any 'home economics' (or whatever they call it these days) class, as it can be one of the healthiest ways to eat but it can also take a bit more planning and forethought than meat and potatoes type cooking, so you do really need to learn how to create certain foods before diving in.

Vegetarian cooking can often include ingredients that a lot of people simply don't understand HOW to deal with in the kitchen. Pulses need to be soaked and some boiled to remove toxins. There are all kinds of grains out there which require different kinds of treatment and of course a lot of younger people in particular can even find vegetables confusing. I've heard a number of anecdotal stories of young checkout staff asking a customer what their bagged vegetables and fruit actually are, even parsnips.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: sciencegeek
Date: 20 Jan 15 - 05:33 AM

More than once I've had to identify a vegetable or other ingredient for the checkout person - and not just the kids. Then I explain how to use it and why it tastes good. Always a teachable moment... and that includes the folks behind me in line... lol

It's hard enough to get school lunch programs to provide non junk food in even affluent areas. We are teaching by example. And the food wasted is unbelievable.

I must inject that kids need to learn to prepare healthy food of ALL kinds... and include recipes from around the world to expose them to new ideas. A dear friend would collect acorns with her kindergarden class and teach them how native Americans would make flour and bake it by doing just that. Practical application of cultural anthropology... a lesson they would never forget.   

But it's sort of silly to expect inner city kids to even have access to fresh fruit and vegetables... during the early migration from the countryside to the cities, they knew how to prepare fresh food - but over generations this knowledge has deteriorated. Especially when major grocery chains moved out to the suburbs and away from the poor. One more area of unequal opportunity or access. It takes a major commitment to even bring in farmers markets on a limited basis. And the restrictions on what food pantries can provide show how the lawyers have had their say...

The highest profit in the food industry is in selling prepared/processed food... just a glance at the price tags should show how over priced it is. And don't get me started on the craze for bottled water.

Teach kids and adults how to prepare healthy meals and give them access to fresh ingredients... then they can chose on their own what they care to eat.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 20 Jan 15 - 11:46 AM

I've heard talk about so-called 'food deserts' on telly. I've no idea of how prevalent they are, but I do know that being stuck on a suburban estate without money for adequate transport, can mean getting to the shops can be awkward - most especially for elderly or disabled. As a kid we had to walk for something over half an hour to get into town and then lug the shopping back with us. Not a huge distance as it wasn't a huge town, but no doubt the bigger the city the further the distance.

I had to teach myself to cook as a teenager, as my mum hadn't got much of a clue past boiled potatoes, bangers, battered fish portions and frozen peas or broad beans! She did cook her Irish grannies lamb and leek stew though, which I now do without the lamb - using just onions, leeks, potatoes, barley and light vegetable broth. Still good! If I hadn't have been motivated to teach myself though, I probably wouldn't have fared to well and would have ended up relying a lot on ready made frozen meals and takeaways like lots of other folk do. Thankfully I also enjoy cooking, so I'm happy to spend a few hours at the weekend filling up the freezer with wholesome brews for the week.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Jan 15 - 01:15 PM

Sad to say, but food deserts are all too common in cities of every size, depending on the neighbor hood and income level. And for those outside the city, mass transit is a joke... even in the cities it's no picnic.

I've known too many people who had to live in their cars - if they had one- and one job I had back in the '80's was in the poor end of town and the street people used whatever they could to keep warm in winter. And a cheap fast food hamburger was their meal until the money ran out. And when they stopped coming around you knew that was the last you'd ever see of them. Reagan-ominics at its "finest".

Meals on Wheels is basically warmed up cafeteria food dropped off at the doorstep of shut ins.

The working poor use most of their wages for basic needs - including transporation cost to their jobs... a treadmill leading nowhere.

Well, wasn't that cheerful... but it is the reality for too many folks around the world.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST
Date: 20 Jan 15 - 01:49 PM

I know this isn't 'vegan' but then again this thread is mostly comprised of non-vegans!

An organisation that meat-eaters with an interest in higher standards of animal welfare (or indeed ANY standards in animal welfare) might find of interest is 'Compassion in World Farming'. Please see their website here: http://www.ciwf.org.uk/

As you might gather, the aims of the CiWF are not to see meat eliminated from out tables, but to simply ensure that the means it gets there, are as humane as reasonably possible. Though I'm not sure of specifics, they have I believe campaigned successfully to improve standards of animal welfare in a number of areas. An area they are continuing to campaign on is to abolish 'factory farming' which I would hope that all contributors to this thread would at the least agree, is an abominable way to treat any living breathing creature, whether destined for the plate or otherwise: CiWF 'End the Cage Age'

Also see their useful pages on which labels you can trust, to actually provide higher welfare to the animals used in your meal (scroll down a bit):

Eggs, Meat, Poultry and Fish: Know Your Labels

CS



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 20 Jan 15 - 02:00 PM

PS I should probably point out that despite the name, CiWF is principally a UK / EU based initiative. I don't know what the comparable US based equivalent is, does anyone else know?



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 20 Jan 15 - 02:08 PM

Part of the sustainable food movement includes organizations of farmers that practice organic or IPM (integrated pest management) methods for food production. Seed savers, Livestock Conservancy promote heritage crops and livestock breeds that are suited to various locales and small operations.

in the USA there is Localharvest.org where you can locate nearby growers and producers ... because without support, there isn't the income they need to keep going. CSA - community supported agriculture- where buyers subscribe to a local producer and share the costs and/or labor.. and RISK. And most folks who drop out are because they don't get the amount of produce they expect. Sometimes the grower's fault, but others because it was just a bad year for growing. Droughts are real and so are famines... have been for millenia. The so called Green Revolution can't change that.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 20 Jan 15 - 05:20 PM

Well I have a good number of vegan and vegetarian dishes in my repertoire, but I'm afraid that I can't agree that there should be vegetarian cookery courses/modules/units in schools. Vegetarian dishes, and discussion about vegetarianism, fine. I also don't agree that good meat cookery is any easier than vegetarian. I think that in any school cookery course there should be a strong emphasis on good-quality ingredients including organic, high-welfare and free-range, and that the ethical considerations relating to food production should be prominent on the agenda. It's a bit like teaching religion: teach children about all the world religions but don't make them worship within one or tell them that one's better than the other, or better than atheism. I feel the same about vegetarianism. It has its place but I part company with vegetarian evangelists. Giving children knowledge about food, faith or politics, and the skills needed to make informed choices, is good education. Anything else has no place in our schools.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 21 Jan 15 - 04:26 AM

Any other approach to teaching is what I meant. Plenty of room for history, music, biology, etc!



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: sciencegeek
Date: 21 Jan 15 - 04:55 AM

agreed, Steve...

I can't but help to regard "exclusive" dietary requirements as variants on a common theme... be it kosher, hallal or vegan... based on philosophical tenants that tend to divide rather than join folks. There is this inherent "this is the only right way and all others are wrong" for "this "fill in the blank" reason".

We end up with oxymorons like "kosher bacon" or "tofurkey"... !?!

One common trait in humans is the binding factor of "sharing food"...    made difficult by conflicting dietary mandates. I happen to make a really great matza ball soup... but unless I go over to a co-worker's kitchen to use her kosher setup, she will never be able to taste it. OK, she married a conservative Jew and adopted his lifestyle... but I have to question the need for such rigidity.

In grad school I worked at the local Chinese restaurant and because he prepared good vegetable dishes, the local vegetarians came there to eat. When I realized that he made the sauces using broth from the stock pot I asked why he didn't use hot water instead for them. He snorted and replied... It's all in their heads, so what they don't know won't hurt them. He was a Catholic that fled the Communist regime in China, but he had Buddist monks as well in his family... and the vegetarians raved about how tasty his cooking was. I really couldn't disagree with his assessment.

There are entire cultures that rely heavily on their herds and/or flocks for their very existence... and every aboriginal culture practices hunting gathering along with any cultivation if practical... is their way of life to be distained? I dare say that they live far healthier lifestyles than those of us in more developed lands.

If there is a "culprit" anywhere... it is agribusiness and their corporate models that reduce everything down to money, power and have equated bigger to mean better. This model is unsustainable and that is what needs to be changed, in my opinion. Target the real enemy.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 21 Jan 15 - 05:31 AM

When we have vegetarians round I do find it a bit of a challenge but I wouldn't do anything sneaky such as using chicken stock for soup. I did it once by accident many years ago and I could scarcely live with my guilt (though they found my illicit soup delicious! I never told them...) On another occasion I served up beef sausages to some people whose religion forbade pork, only to find when I checked the wrapper afterwards that there was a bit of pork in the bangers anyway...oops...

I wonder what happens when kids bring notes into school saying that their religion forbids using pork, or that they're vegetarian on principle and shouldn't be made to use meat in recipes. When I worked in a church school the kids were allowed to exempt themselves from religious assemblies, but none ever did to my recollection (I did!). Likewise with sex education lessons. I remember one occasion in a primary school in which Mrs Steve once worked when a "pressure group" of parents of a particular faith managed to stop the school from "doing" Halloween (no talk of witches, no dressing up, masks or pumpkins allowed). Hmm. While I'm no lover of all that Halloween jiggerypokery, I can't help thinking that the school should have held out. We may well espouse multiculturalism as a Good Thing, but separate-culturalism is a different matter. There's a lot to be said for the kind of tolerance that involves a mixture of curiosity, shrugging the shoulders and, if needs be, holding the nose, I reckon.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,Ed
Date: 21 Jan 15 - 09:40 AM

Why on earth do you feel the need to bring your thoughts on religion into a food thread, Steve?



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 21 Jan 15 - 10:01 AM

Ed, I believe Steve's point is about leaning towards tolerance... and most of the intolerance in schools seems to stem from religious factions. And I'm the one "guilty" of bringing up food issues that resemble religious mandates.

Both Steve and I recognize the evolutionary results of a million or more years of an omnivourous diet on the anatomy and physiology of hominids that resulted finally in the human species... even chimpanzees organize hunts to prey upon monkeys... you need to go to gorillas to see a strictly herbivourous great ape. Agriculture arose only since the retreat of the last continental glaciers some 10 thousand years ago. The species has not had the time nor the isolation to result in significant changes due to dietary influences... what we do see is cultural and behavioral changes that are not always conducive to good health.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 21 Jan 15 - 01:13 PM

Thanks, sciencegeek. Ed, I think you are missing the point. I have no intention of turning this into a religion thread,



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 21 Jan 15 - 01:33 PM

I'd like to point out that the analogy with religious belief is erroneous. Apart from where some religions have adopted vegetarianism as a part of their creed, the basic tenates of Veganism have nothing whatsoever to do with any kind of religious faith which is adhered to just because some prophet or god 'said so'. Instead it is based entirely on one's subjective moral philosophical compass. Indeed you will find atheism to be a very typical default position for a large proportion of vegans. As well as oddly enough, the decision not to breed, but to adopt instead.

The logic or rational behind Veganism (as a moral philosophy rather than a health based choice) is quite simple:
1) all the nutrients that human beings need to be completely healthy can easily be found in plant foods (or in the case of B12, fortified food/an occasional supplement) therefore meat is an unnecessary part of a human diet.
2) If I agree (and this is obviously the crux of the matter;"IF") that it is reasonable to not cause the unnecessary suffering of non-human animals purely for the sake of my pleasure, then it makes sense to choose not to eat meat.

That's all there is to it.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,Ed
Date: 21 Jan 15 - 01:55 PM

My apologies, Steve, On rereading your post I can see that I was indeed missing your point.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 21 Jan 15 - 03:28 PM

"variants on a common theme... be it kosher, hallal or vegan... based on philosophical tenants"

I think that your rebuttal actual supports my position...

The logic or rational behind Veganism (as a moral philosophy rather than a health based choice) is quite simple:

1) all the nutrients that human beings need to be completely healthy can easily be found in plant foods (or in the case of B12, fortified food/an occasional supplement) therefore meat is an unnecessary part of a human diet.

the reliance on meat in the diet is what allowed Homo to move out of Africa and colonize new territory rather than being restricted to a single habitat. Your use of the term "easily found" is not correct outside of maybe the subcontinenet of India or in the modern supermarket. Rickets, beriberi and other nutritional "diseases" are still all too common around the world. The addition of a small quantity of meat in their diet would solve much of that. The argument is as useful as stating that people do not need to read or write to live, so it is OK to dispense with that as well.

2) If I agree (and this is obviously the crux of the matter;"IF") that it is reasonable to not cause the unnecessary suffering of non-human animals purely for the sake of my pleasure, then it makes sense to choose not to eat meat.

speaking as person who lives with livestock, I can state that it very possible to raise animals for food purposes without them suffering. I will NOT defend any part of agribusinees or factory farms... but will support sustainable producers. I could go out in the pig pasture and sit down... within a few minutes the sows would come over and lay down next to me. My 800 pound boar would come racing over to get his ears scratched... I made sure to hold out my hand far out to avoid getting my foot stepped on in his haste.

That's all there is to it. - No, that is only one narrow perspective that ignores the rest. And THAT was the point I was trying to make.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 21 Jan 15 - 05:57 PM

Thanks, Ed. There was no Shavian plot to get religion on the agenda! I was (a bit clumsily) trying to compare religious evangelism with veggie evangelism, which, I hasten to add, is admirably absent from this thread. Whilst I'm neither vegan nor vegetarian, I do cook dishes that fit those bills (and I'm the chef in our house!). So I don't feel TOO out of place in this thread.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 24 Jan 15 - 08:55 AM

I just did a super wholefood / vegan Ocado shop. For anyone in the UK who wants healthy dairy-free and meat-free goodies, Ocado is the place. Not Waitrose, oddly they've been rubbish when I've tried to get things I wanted, but Ocado is excellent!

Organic Wholewheat Penne
Organic Wholewheat Pappardelle
Organic Wholewheat Mezze Maniche Rigate
Oatly Organic Oat Cream - is best dairy-free cream sub around
Wholewheat Cous Cous
Oatly Chocolate Drink - is yummy, much better than those goopy milk ones
Red Camargue and Wild Rice
Black Turtle Beans
Crushed Chilles
Borlotti Beans
Brown Basmati - big bag
Pinto beans
Split Dried Fava Beans
Apple Balsamic
'Mock Duck' braised gluten - looking forward to testing this out!
Black eye beans - for hopping john
Adzuki beans
Chick peas
Agar Agar - vegan 'jelly' setting agent made from seaweed
Amy's Vegan Macaroni Cheese - yet to try this but it's supposed to be pretty realistic

I couldn't get much of that at any other supermarket.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 24 Jan 15 - 09:55 AM

Mock Duck was interesting! The texture is soft and juicy but fibrous like meat! It even has the patturn of roasted duck skin impressed on some of it. I had it in a super lazy stew with tinned potatoes, tinned mushrooms and frozen peas! Not bad really considering :)



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 26 Jan 15 - 08:48 AM

Today I'm making 'piri piri' flavoured seitan deli sausage. Two of them on one go this time so I don't have to cook them every week.

Also, because I'm not very alert and adventurous today, I will also be making a nice easy leek potato and barley stew for next week. Just right for this damp weather.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 26 Jan 15 - 07:06 PM

I pulled a large aluminum covered brick of a multi-layered eggplant Parmesan out of the freezer yesterday. It was originally assembled in a Pyrex container, then the foil-wrapped frozen block went from glass casserole to a labeled sturdy plastic bag. Years later, it went into the oven at 325o for about 2.5 hours. Time has only improved this magnificent dish made in late 2011. It's lunch this week.

Today I finished cooking a batch of lefse.

Both of these dishes have milk or butter, and I would never manage a transition to a vegan diet, especially when the substitute foods are so highly processed (I see some serious problems with the production of almonds and soy beans, for example, that rival some of the environmental problems of the dairy industry). If I can manage to find organic dairy, produced locally, I'll settle for that.

SRS



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST
Date: 26 Jan 15 - 09:35 PM

For anyone in the UK who wants healthy dairy-free and meat-free goodies, Ocado is the place.

Not if you live in Scotland...



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: sciencegeek
Date: 26 Jan 15 - 10:41 PM

LOL Mock Duck has never struck me as actually tasting anything like duck... same goes for mock abalone, but "plain" braised gluten is quite tasty because it absorbs so much from the sauce... which are usually very nice and quite varied. I find it canned or in jars at any oriental food store that carries Chinese brands.   

I am also a fan of congee/jook - rice porridge that is made by cooking rice in a large amount of broth/water so that it becomes smooth & thick enough to eat with chopsticks or spoon. I like adding some ground pork and pickled preserved vegetable for a nice winter meal, but otherwise you eat it along with various preserved vegetables, like sliced bamboo shoots in chili sauce or salted radish. Another way is to add dried fruit while cooking... or eat plain with fresh or canned fruits on the side.   

Thinking of rice, boy I could go for some nice sticky rice simmered in coconut milk with fresh mango slices.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 27 Jan 15 - 02:47 AM

Stilly, four years?! How can you store anything in your freezer for four years? If I started doing that it would fill up and be impossible to use in a very short amount of time. Three months is probably the longest time I'd store anything, just because we eat it. And I routinely go through our freezer before each weekly shop, to make sure there's enough room for any fresh stuff that may need to go in.

Is your freezer like the Tardis with an unnaturally huge interior? Or maybe it's like the arctic wastes where mammoth meat hides beneath the snow for thousands of years... :-)



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 27 Jan 15 - 03:07 AM

Sciencegeek, no the mock duck I had was nothing like duck. Not fatty or greasy, but savoury in its own way. Closest to lamb in appearance and texture IMO. I think it would be nice in a rich sauce.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 27 Jan 15 - 04:22 AM

No Ocado in my bit of Cornwall either. There ought to be a law.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: sciencegeek
Date: 27 Jan 15 - 06:51 AM

considering the penchant for imaginative naming of dishes by the Chinese, I suspect that mock duck or abalone refers as much to the texturing and seasoning used in the preparation. Many of these ingredients go back to Buddhist dishes... lo han zai, Buddhist Monk's Delight, uses at least 8 ingredients and would be for special occasions... lotus root, dried tofu, shaped gluten, bamboo tips, straw mushrooms...   

That's what I like about regular braised gluten... it is what it is and not pretend something else. If you like the taste & texture of it, it can be a featured ingredient and enjoyed as such.

I stir fry cut up asparagus until tender and the add a can of undrained braised gluten ... add a little dark soy or oyster sauce to finish and serve with steamed rice. It would work as well with broccoli, though I prefer to steam that, but if you have a ton of broccoli on hand you come up with different ways to prepare... lol



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 27 Jan 15 - 01:20 PM

Sciencegeek, Bhuddist dishes, are probably a bit on the exotic side to cook for someone like me who has no nearby Asian food markets. You can get the odd vegetarian dish at Chinese takeaways, like Buddah's Delight and Phoenix Courts the Dragon, but I'd love to go somewhere to eat out and really have a go at trying 'Temple Cuisine'. There must be so much that I've never heard of let alone tasted.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 27 Jan 15 - 03:01 PM

I know all too well how hard it is to find a good asian food market... I have to drive an hour to a college town with a large Asian population myself.

You can order through Amazon, but their prices are higher than I usually care to pay. The grocery stores now carry more of the sauces and some spices, but only a limited range of fresh vegetables.

When I go into Rochester, I hit as many shops as I can and stock up on the staples that store well. If you don't garden yourself, you might find a local grower who would raise some of the greens and vegetables for you... if they find it sells well they'll keep growing it.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 28 Jan 15 - 08:54 AM

here is a link for making gluten... any wheat flour will work, though the higher the gluten content, the higher the yield... it has pictures to help you out.

http://m.wikihow.com/Make-Wheat-Gluten

once you've made your gluten & got it into a shape you like, use them in a dish. Freeze what you don't use.

this link is for seitan

http://www.vrg.org/recipes/vjseitan.htm

enjoy



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sg
Date: 28 Jan 15 - 09:08 AM

ooops... left this one off

https://eatingrules.com/how-to-make-seitan/

if you can get dark soy or mushroom soy, oyster sauce (it also comes vegetarian), hoisin sauce and toasted sesame oil you can make any number of tasty Buddhist dishes with local greens like cabbage or mustards... kohlrabi is often found in Asian markets. Daikon radish is good, but any radish will do... for that peppery taste.

canned bamboo shoots & water chestnuts will serve well and are found in most grocery stores here

if you can find bean threads or rice sticks... stock up on them - they last forever and have many uses.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Jan 15 - 11:41 AM




Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 28 Jan 15 - 11:43 AM

Sciencegeek, I've enjoyed making seitan for the past few weeks. I make slicing sausage for sandwiches. This week it's piri piri, but I really like the spicy tomato and oregano that I made last week. No chance I'd bother with all the faffing with plain flour though. I use vital gluten flour, which is super quick and easy, and also cheap from where I buy it (in bulk). I'd applaud anyone actually going to the trouble to create the stuff from plain flour though.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 28 Jan 15 - 11:58 AM

yes, if you can get hold of the basic ingredients, life is easier.

if you can get canned bamboo shoots... draing them and then soak in water for a while to freshen them, then put in a jar with hot chili oil and refrigerate. worth a try... :)

Made with hot chile peppers, chili oil is the secret ingredient in many Szechuan dishes. Besides its use in cooking, chili oil (also called hot chili oil or pepper oil) is frequently served as a condiment in dim sum or noodle restaurants. Like all hot oil infusions, the secret to making chili oil lies in getting the temperature of the heated oil just right. Too cool and the oil won't absorb the flavors; too hot and the chili flakes will burn. Ideally, the temperature should be about 225 – 240 degrees Fahrenheit (107 to 122.5 degrees Celsius). For best results, use peanut or canola oil. You can also use olive oil if desired; just make sure it has a high enough smoking point. (Steer clear of extra virgin olive oil).

This is a basic recipe for chili oil. Once you've got the technique down, feel free to jazz it up by adding garlic, ginger, cumin, sugar or other spices. To make it even hotter, add more dried chiles or reduce the oil to 1/3 cup. The chili oil can be used almost immediately, but for best results leave the oil for a day to allow the flavors to blend.

Chili Oil Ingredients
10 – 12 small dried chilies (1 – 2 inches long) to make 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped chili flakes
1/2 cup peanut, canola, or olive oil.
1 tablespoon sesame oil, optional



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 28 Jan 15 - 01:12 PM

Thought I'd list some of the things I now get in, as we veer more and more away from animal foods and towards plant-based eating.

Ground Flax Seeds - Use them to bind and to thicken. I put them in pureed fruit puddings with silken tofu to thicken them up. You can use them in pancakes instead of eggs and in cakes too. Also add to smoothies.

Silken Tofu - As above, a good dairy free goopy substance for fruit puddings. You can also use it to make mayo. Some people use it to replace eggs in dense cakes like brownies. Completely bland so tastes like nothing at all when used this way.

Vital Wheat Gluten Flour - Use to make homemade seitan. I'm only just starting to explore seitan but it's dead easy to make. I used the last of the last batch of sausage to dice and put into a stew with barley, leek and potato.

Nutritional Yeast Flakes - Rich umami flavour plus lots of B vits. Get the fortified version for B12. Use to top pasta dishes or rich vegetable casseroles.

Chickpea Flour - Use to make farinata or vegan eggless 'omelette'. Also use to add to seitan to make it the right texture and to enrichen the flavour. And of course, onion bhajis!

Hmm, if I think of more I'll be back..



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 28 Jan 15 - 01:17 PM

Sciencegeek, I like the idea of making my own chilli oil. I don't have a thermometer to measure the temperature though. Is there any more hands on way I could judge it? Like with using a cube of bread for example.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sg
Date: 28 Jan 15 - 01:29 PM

well water boils at 100C or 212F, which is just a little below the recommended tempertaure.
so I'd do like my mom taught me to see if the pan is hot enough... a quick flick of water. If it sizzles & dances around, that should be hot enough. Add the pepper flakes and keep on the heat a few minutes to bring it back to temperature and wait 'til you get an aroma. I would NOT recommend putting your head down to sniff, though... might singe your nose hairs....   

then remove from the heat and allow to cool down. sample with a spoon - coat with the oil and take a taste... after all you want it hot enough for your preferences, not mine :)



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sg
Date: 28 Jan 15 - 02:00 PM

duh... always go back to basics...

it dawned on me that the recipe for chili oil is done that way to keep down the volatile oils in the kitchen. Keep from pepper spraying the cook... lol

Want to bet the original way was to add a small amount of oil to the wok, heat and add the chopped chilies... when they sizzled and gave off their oils, it was time to remove from the heat and add the rest of the cool oil.

The whole point of the exercise is to get the volatile oils released so they can infuse the rest of the oil. Cooking is chemistry...

That's why you add garlic/ginger/chili at the start of a stir fry - to get those flavors out there...



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 29 Jan 15 - 10:41 AM

one of the health food stores puts out a monthly newsletter and they had an eggplant/chickpea stew recipe...

essentially equal amounts of chopped eggplant, zuchinni and chick peas with onion, garlic & some oregano...

sorry... the Italian in me immediately saw endless ways to improve upon it... lol but as a starting point, not too bad... :)



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 29 Jan 15 - 07:43 PM

The Italian in you should be telling you that you never use onion and garlic together in the same dish. ;-)



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 29 Jan 15 - 08:01 PM

Actually, tomorrow I shall be doing a really good vegan pasta dish . Strictly speaking I should be using orecchiette but you can't get that round here, so I shall be using another short pasta of some kind instead. The whole thing takes only as long as it takes the pasta to cook.

Put a good glug of olive oil in your best heavy shallow pan. While it's warming, get your pasta on in another pan.

To the oil, add a sprinkling of dried chilli flakes (or a small chopped chilli) a clove or two of finely-chopped garlic to taste and a good handful of halved cherry tomatoes. After a few minutes, add a handful or more of freshly-chopped parsley. When the pasta has about three minutes to go, throw about half a pound of broccoli florets into the pasta water. You're aiming to get the pasta al dente just as the broccoli is cooked but still quite crispy.

Drain the pasta/broccoli mixture and throw it into the pan of sauce. Season if needed, mix well and pile into warm bowls. Fantastico.

Personally, I shall be going non-vegan and adding some pecorino or Parmesan, but that is definitely optional.

I found that tenderstem broccoli is great with this, but ordinary calabrese is fine. I have a pack of sprout flowers lying around, so I may try those instead. It's all good.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 29 Jan 15 - 08:06 PM

I should have said that that would feed three biggies if you use enough pasta, let's say 500g. Or maybe a wee bit less. We eat big in our house!



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 30 Jan 15 - 08:38 AM

never use onion and garlic together in the same dish.... such blasphemy!! :) LOL

do like your menu for dinner... add a nice green salad and crusty bread... yum



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 30 Jan 15 - 12:06 PM

Well you've already got tomatoes, parsley and greens in there. I know some people have garlic bread and suchlike with pasta dishes but I'd rather pile the pasta on a bit more. If you're still not full you could always have a bit of our guilt free "ice cream" for afters, which consists of nothing except ripe bananas. Cut the bananas into rough chunks and freeze. When frozen, blitz them a bit at a time in a food processor (has to be man enough to handle the frozen chunks). Refreeze the mush and voila. A slightly less guilt-free option is to eat that with a good splash of Baileys on top!



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 30 Jan 15 - 12:15 PM

I love broccoli with pasta, never had it with a chilli tomato sauce though! In fact broccoli with anything at all is good.

What should I do with my pappardelle Steve? Chunky ragu type thing I'm thinking. Maybe aubergine based.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 30 Jan 15 - 01:35 PM

I also have this maniche rigate (sp?) like huge chunky ridged macaroni. It looks like it could be good baked.. ??



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sg
Date: 30 Jan 15 - 01:42 PM

you can bake any pasta... but some shapes work better than others...

very large hollow pasta can be stuffed with cheese, etc. and baked in a white or red sauce.

smaller shaped pasta can be made into casseroles or cold salads...

or added to soups. experiment... :)



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 30 Jan 15 - 01:58 PM

There are some nice mini-pastas for soup such as stellette, mini-macaroni, orzo and conchigliette, and. because you cook them in the soup, their starchiness adds richness instead of going down the plughole. The best Italian chefs always say that ragu is best with ribbon pastas such as pappardelle, but I don't adhere to such rules. We seem to eat spaghetti more than anything at our house though my cupboard has a fair old variety. I'm not especially keen on ordinary shell pasta because they tend to nest inside each other a bit too much. I don't use farfalle very much either because the thin edges overcook if the pasta is in the water long enough for the thicker middles to be al dente, and I hate overcooked pasta because it reminds me of horrible school dinners. A very good thing to look out for is "bronzo" or "bronze-die" on the pack. These pastas have a rough surface which is much better for the sauce to cling to.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sg
Date: 30 Jan 15 - 02:19 PM

my favorite "mini" pasta for soups is "acini di pepe"... a little bigger than couscous and used in Italian Wedding soup among others. I put it in escarole soup. It can also become a salad base.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 30 Jan 15 - 02:47 PM

Woof! This looks just the job, first result on searching for aubergine ragu:
http://www.waitrose.com/content/waitrose/en/home/recipes/recipe_directory/a/aubergine-and-sweetpepperraguwithpappardelle.html
Aubergine and sweet pepper ragù with pappardelle

Vegetarian
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes 45 minutes
Serves: 4

Ingredients

2 large aubergines, chopped into 2cm cubes
1 tbsp mild olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 red peppers, finely chopped
400g can chopped tomatoes
200ml vegetable stock
1 tbsp soft brown sugar
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tbsp nonpareille capers, drained
250g pack pappardelle pasta

Method

1. Bring a large pan of water to boil, tip in the chopped aubergine and place a saucer over to stop the aubergine floating to the top. Cook for 10 minutes until tender but holding its shape. Leave to drain in a colander.

2. Heat a sauté pan, add the olive oil, followed by the onion, cook until soft and golden, add the garlic and cook for another minute.

3. Add the peppers, and cook until softened. Add the drained aubergine, chopped tomatoes, stock and sugar.

4. Simmer for 15 minutes until thickened. Stir in the vinegar and capers. Season and leave to cool.

5. Bring a large pan of water to boil, cook the pasta according to pack instructions.

6. Add the pasta to the sauce, toss to coat and serve with grated Parmigiano Reggiano and fresh basil.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 30 Jan 15 - 03:34 PM

Regarding vegetable ragu. It calls for stock and tomatoes.

Does anyone use stock and tomatoes?

I don't tend to use stock at all, and prefer all tomatoes instead, as I find stock a bit, well, lacking.

Any thoughts?



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 30 Jan 15 - 04:07 PM

I like that ragu recipe, I'm going to give it a go.

I don't use stock in my soups and stews, I prefer store bought vegetable bullion cubes and water. Careful with it, though, if you have issues with salt.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 30 Jan 15 - 04:32 PM

Being a bit of a non-vegan, I tend to use chicken stock a lot, home-made at all times. If I need veg stock I never use cubes or powder because they are always too salty. Just cut up an onion or two, along with a sliced up carrot and some sticks of celery (the tough outside sticks are perfect for the job), chuck in some parsley, thyme and freshly-ground black pepper and boil for an hour. A bit of green stuff if you have any, cabbage stalks or similar. That way, you get great flavour and you're in control of the salt. If I need a bit more oomph I might stick in a tiny handful of dried porcini, but not if it's for anything delicate.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: sciencegeek
Date: 31 Jan 15 - 06:58 AM

my earlier comment vanished into the ether...

you make a good vegetable stock & freeze it, but I find it benefits from bay leaf and other herbs.

take your peelings, outside leaves and onion skins (for color as much as flavor) and add to your assortment of vegetables to use making the stock. Boil it down to concentrate the flavor.

but I also find that rinsing out the last of the spaghetti sauce and setting aside for broth works fine too... lol



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 01 Feb 15 - 03:29 AM

I try to avoid buying unseasonal fruit and veg.
Any thoughts on where aubergines come from to the UK at this time of year and what they're like?
I'm trying to decide whether it's worth getting some in to do that aubergine and pepper ragu.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 01 Feb 15 - 08:09 AM

The last couple of lots of aubergines I've bought both had skins so tough that they were completely inedible even after long cooking. One lot from Sainsburys, one from Morrisons.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 01 Feb 15 - 12:15 PM

I've just looked at my bags of peppers and lemons, both from Spain. Amazing. Is Spain really warm enough in January to grow such heat loving fruits?

Maybe once the Greek revolution reaches Spain, it'll be time to think about moving on.. So chilly in blighty today. Ouch.

Veggie sausages, mash and beans to warm me up, not exactly 'proper food' but sometimes it's what's needed.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: sciencegeek
Date: 01 Feb 15 - 12:23 PM

even the asian eggplants are dicy this time of year... I can get frozen breaded eggplant at a good price, so go with that... but not so good for stew or ragu.

If the skin is tough, we just peel it and use the flesh... you might want to salt or blanch it first to remove the bitterness. sweet ripe tomatoes will often offset any bitterness.

we sent to the Middle Eastern store yesterday & picked up some spices & mixes... one is for a chickpea curry that sounds like fun. Hope it's not so hot as to bitter the tongue... lol



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Feb 15 - 04:17 PM

Amazing. Is Spain really warm enough in January to grow such heat loving fruits?

They have enormous heated greenhouses, that's how.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 01 Feb 15 - 06:13 PM

Look at Almeria province on Google Earth satellite view. You'll see all the thousands of acres of plasticos, so extensive that they're visible from space. When you see them close up, as I do when I go to that otherwise lovely part of Spain, you're horrified. That's where a lot of our out-of-season tomatoes and peppers come from, and lots more besides. It's very depressing to see.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: sciencegeek
Date: 02 Feb 15 - 05:48 AM

acres of greenhouses... using hydroponics to grow produce for folks living in temperate climates... the western end of Long Island was like that a century ago... growing produce for the city of New York... though they used composted manure instead of hydroponics.

One area is still known by the name Garden City. The produce was trucked into the city and sold by hucksters from horse drawn carts. I remember seeing large greenhouse complexes along the south shore of Long Island when I was kid - before everything was bulldozed for housing tracts- out in the eastern end of the island.

Fresh produce has an environmental cost... just like everything else does. Otherwise we have only dried grains, pulses, preserved fuits and salted/pickled vegetables for how many months of the year. I like kimchi, but not everyday thank you.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,Patsy
Date: 03 Feb 15 - 04:24 AM

Speaking of vegetarian evangelism I admit that as a young girl it did become a sort of crusade to me. I really did feel that I wanted to rid the world from suffering and cruelty so by refusing meat at home and at school I believed that I was making a difference. To my parents I was at 'that awkward age' it didn't occur to me that it would not make a difference to the rest of the world's opinion on it. My mother's family never used herbs or spices unless of course it was to add a bit of nutmeg to a milk pudding or cinnamon to an apple tart or bread pudding. Even now my mum still does not understand why all the cookery programs make a fuss about different herbs but for me I now I hardly cook a meal without them. The problem is that now mum is elderly her digestion is intolerant to what I would normally cook so when I do cook for her it has to be the meat and two veg. Garlic is another example it was never used in her cooking at home adding onions was about as adventurous as she would get and that was only in a stew or fried. Education on different foods is something that I have gained in life with travel, multicultural friendships and to some extent cookery programs to influence me and feel lucky that I can access this information. At the end of the day it is the lack of exercise that is the killer.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: sciencegeek
Date: 03 Feb 15 - 06:31 AM

well, thanks to the snow that fell starting Sunday, I got plenty of exercise yesterday shoveling snow... that added to the usual chores associated with raising critters.

we are oh so looking forward to spring and seeing green again... lol

bought some garden seeds... and the first of the seed catalogs arrived... so many options... :)



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 03 Feb 15 - 01:08 PM

Sciencegeek, yes it is getting to be that time of year again! How the seasons spin past.

I must grow coriander and rocket this year. Coriander for lots of things, but especially curries.

I'm going to have a stab at american land cress too as it's supposed to be a good alternative to my fave watercresss. Love the piquant salad greens.

Always do a patch of parsley, usually both kinds.

I will be doing butternut squash this year too, as I found that to be a useful little crop last time.

Toms natch, and lots of chillies!

I enjoyed the cape gooseberries last year so will be doing those again.

And the lovely white creamy/mild tasting courgettes that have a fancy sounding Italian name that I can't recall right now.

Basil I'll probably buy from the supermarket and plant out later in the year.

Won't bother with aubergines. Not sure about regular peppers, may try something different there for a change.

I like marrow - yes I know it's big and bland, but I stuff it and use it for soup. So will have a couple of plants.

Love radishes, es[ecially those little colourful ones. And I must find a corner for my horseradish so I can get a nice root to make sauce with this year.

I love those little yellow wax beans. and i think ill have a go at Patty Pan Squash.

Any suggestions for other easy to grow veg?



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 03 Feb 15 - 01:41 PM

the hubby plants bush beans... which then get overcrowded and moldy.. I prefer pole beans, especially Italian flatbeans. you can harvest them all season instead of that big flush designed for mechanical harvesting.

if you plant peppers, be sure to not over fertilize them... my dad once ended up with onster plants - but no peppers... lol he said they were ungrateful plants..

tuberous sunflowers, aka Jerusalem artichokes are nice and healthy, their starch being inulin... and you can use them to support your pole beans. One of the native American Three sisters.

I like to grow oriental greens... like shanghai cabbage ... and various cherry tomatoes. Garlic, leeks and walking onions are a must.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 04 Feb 15 - 11:36 AM

have you ever tried radish/turnip cake?

essentially you mix grated daikon - an oriental radish- with rice flour , place in a rectangular tin and steam like you would a pudding.

when it's done & cooled, you slice into 1/2 inch thick pieces and pan fry or grill until nicely browned. serve with dipping sauce, steamed greens and rice.

I leave out the dried shrimp that is often listed in recipes... I prefer it plain.    and the steamed greens are served with oyster sauce - which also comes vegetarian, don't ask me how.



Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 06 Feb 15 - 04:01 AM

Yesterday from over the road at our local newsagents I spied a vegan baking magazine!
It's number 7 or part of a series canned "The Essential Cooking Collection" and was £3:99.

I bought it on the off chance that the recipes might be worth cooking and so far so good.

On my list of weekend vegan baking treats I'm going to try in the next few weeks:

Apple and Cinnamon Cake
Pear and Almond Tart
Cranberry Biscuits
Peanut Butter Cookies
Banana and Walnut Bread
Spiced Gingerbread
Lemon and Raisin Loaf
Oat and Raisin Cookies

And more.. Num num. I don't eat a lot of sweet things but these are my kind of goodies! I will be switching white flour for wholemeal though.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Feb 15 - 02:13 AM

3rd batch from the cache

Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 07 Jan 15 - 03:27 AM

I had another look at the Thug Kitchen recipes and they're actually not so GooP after all (for anyone who doesn't know, GooP is Gwyneth Paltrow's lifestyle blog - don't go there unless you have access to super exotic ingredients for 'cookies'.

Otherwise there are some things you can make use of for baking vegan cookies, or indeed cakes, that aren't that tough to find or expensive. Fat is simple enough of course, you just use vegetable oil, margarine or (quite popular now as a butter sub in baking) coconut oil. When replacing eggs in vegan baking however you have to consider what effect is needed; something gooey and fudgey (eg: brownies), light and airy (eg: cup cakes), or something that binds together well (eg: pancakes). For each kind of baking need there is an egg replacement that will do a similar job. Bananas and silken tofu are often employed for fudgey things, bicarbonate of soda and vinegar for airy style cakes, and flax seeds for binding. Sometimes, depending on what you're making you might employ more than one of these ingredients.

Anyway, there's an article here about it all: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/food-52/how-to-make-your-own-egg_b_6423016.html
Though to save hassle, I reckon it's probably best to hunt down photos on the web of good looking vegan bakes that other people have perfected for themselves. I use google images to do this (with keywords like "vegan cake recipe"), and I always look for a photo that shows a slice or cross section of the cake, to gauge how the 'crumb' looks.

Google Image result for 'vegan' 'cake' 'recipe'

Beware though, *some* bloggers steal other people's photos for their own use, so a great looking photo might not necessarily indicate a great recipe, but it's not the norm I've found. Alternatively just buy a book on vegan baking with good reviews on Amazon, there are a number of them out there now.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 07 Jan 15 - 10:58 AM

I've just this minute heard some expert on Radio 4 declaring that "we now live in an obesogenic environment." *boggle*


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 08 Jan 15 - 05:13 AM

That's a new word on me.

Can't really argue with the idea that the environments in which we live, work and socialise have become increasingly stuffed with the means to make people fat. We have three takeaways within ten minutes walk of our house. It's only a small community. Everywhere you look there's advertising for that stuff too. And they wouldn't put it everywhere if it didn't work.

We are pretty primal creatures at heart, however much we like to imagine ourselves as smarter than other animals, the exact same instincts to feed and to reproduce dominate our behaviours.

In other news I had spicy black bean and sweetcorn patties for breakfast with tinned plum tomatoes and a brown roll, yum yum.

I soaked and cooked a 500g bag of black beans. Sauteed a couple each of finely diced onions and sweet peppers in a little oil Boiled and drained some frozen sweetcorn (probably a quarter of the volume of the cooked beans) Mashed it all into the beans along with plenty of salt, smoked paprika and chilli powder. I added texture and substance to the mixture with a couple handfuls of rolled oats, And used a couple of 'flax eggs' (ie: a couple of tablespoonfuls of ground flax seeds mixed with a little water and left to go goopy) to help everything to bind together nicely (like playdough) Using a well packed US Half Cup measure, and plenty of brown flour to coat them, I made FOURTEEN patties altogether.

Most of those are now in the freezer. Some in our tummies. I probably spent around £2 on the ingredients. About the same as a cheeseburger from McDs'


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 08 Jan 15 - 07:08 AM

That sounds good CS. 2 questions:

1. Would a non-vegan substitute 2 chicken eggs for the flax eggs for that amount of beans? 2. Do the rolled oats get cooked at all before inclusion?

Thanks.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 08 Jan 15 - 07:27 AM

Hi Gillymor,

Yes I use uncooked rolled oats, the basic porridge kind. The oats get cooked when you cook the patties. I find them to be a good ingredient in patties as they improve the texture, making it less squishy. I don't like squishy bean burgers.

I usually pan fry these sorts of patties by the way, but you can bake them too. Place them on an oiled baking sheet and brush extra bit of oil over the tops. About 25mins at a medium/hot heat should do it.

Yes, you can use real eggs to bind. You'll probably get a better result with real eggs as they will help the patties to firm up as they cook.

I should amend my umm 'recipe' above by saying add in your eggs *before* you add your oats. You'll get a better idea of how many oats to add then. Use your own judgement there, I do it just by mixing in as many handfuls as are needed to bring all the ingredients together in a nice firmish 'mouldable' dough, neither too dry and crumbly nor too wet and sticky.

Don't be scared of using lots of seasoning here. I shove in a hearty quantity of salt, herbs and spice in my bean burger mixes. A whole 500g pack makes a large batch and when they taste plain they aren't any fun to eat.

A nice thing to do with these kind of patties once shaped, is to coat them in finely crushed (I use a food processor for this) tortilla chips. You get a really crunchy crumb on the outside and a moist steamy middle.

You would do it by first coating in flour, then dipping in beaten egg, and then finally coating in the crumbs. It can get a bit messy though, especially when dealing with a whole load of them!


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 08 Jan 15 - 07:35 AM

PS one egg would probably be enough.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 08 Jan 15 - 08:02 AM

Thanks, CS. I love the notion of a tortilla chip coating.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 08 Jan 15 - 09:58 AM

I hadn't heard of the Thug book or blog until it was mentioned by my coworker, so I'm interested to read your assessment. I may have to do some more research myself.

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 08 Jan 15 - 10:33 AM

PS one egg would probably be enough.

In France, one egg would certainly be un oeuf!


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 08 Jan 15 - 10:52 AM

for those with cholesterol issues, egg whites work well for binding & keeping the flavor light.

Cooked yolks and crushed egg shells can be added to bird suet to give them a healthy treat.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 08 Jan 15 - 11:47 AM

I'm making a bean goulash (or 'bean gulyas') this evening, roughly following this recipe (check the pic, it looks really quite good):

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/13/health/nutrition/13recipehealth.html?_r=0

Somewhat unusually for me, I'm using tinned red kidney beans instead of dried, as you can get them ridiculously cheaply here in UK supermarkets so I always have them in stock. Handy for when, like tonight, you haven't planned ahead and soaked your beans!

I also find tinned red kidney beans useful to make chilli spiced bean burgers, spicy bean pate for toast or rolls, and chilli sin carne (without the beef instead of with).


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 08 Jan 15 - 01:03 PM

PS that bean gulyas should be served ladled over some boiled, crushed buttered potatoes.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 09 Jan 15 - 08:13 AM

Posters here might find this documentary called Vegucated that follows a bunch of people trying out a new vegan diet for several weeks, of interest.

Vegucated Documentary

" egucated is a 2011 American documentary film that explores the challenges of converting to a vegan diet. It "follows three meat- and cheese-loving New Yorkers who agree to adopt a vegan diet for six weeks."

The director interviewed a number of people to participate in this documentary and chose Brian, who likes to eat meat and eat out; Ellen, a psychiatrist, part-time comedian and single mother; and Tesla, a college student who lives with her family.[1] In the film Dr. Joel Fuhrman and Professor T. Colin Campbell discuss the benefits of a plant-based diet consisting of whole foods. The film also features Howard Lyman and Stephen R. Kaufman. Kneel Cohn makes a cameo appearance.

The documentary addresses the resistance that some people feel towards vegetarianism and veganism, the disconnect between farm animals and the purchasing of meat, the origins of omnivorism and the ethical, environmental and health benefits of a vegan diet. During the filming, participants visited an abandoned slaughterhouse and investigated the reality of intensive animal farming in the US. Of their own accord, they chose to trespass on a factory farm to see for themselves, and became passionate about their new-found cause."


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 09 Jan 15 - 09:29 AM

encouraging criminal trespass... sounds like PETA and Green Peace vigilantes at work. The hell with science, the hell with moderation... let's shove our ideology into everyone's face. I don't care for zealotry in any of its forms...

You will never achieve meaningful reform in agribusiness with this kind of behavior.

You notice they didn't visit a certified organic grower and their free range operation. It is NOT an all or nothing option... even Buddists have the option of eating meat... and it's part of their religion. Why this facination with radical extremes? There is a desperate need for moderation and tolerance in this world... not this my way and anything and everything else is bad.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 09 Jan 15 - 09:46 AM

That recipe for Bean Goulash sounded so good I went out and got the stuff to fix it tonight. Did you notice the link on the left side to more M.R. Shulman recipes? One of my favorite and well-worn cookbooks is her "Fast Vegetarian Feasts".


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 09 Jan 15 - 11:32 AM

Gillymor, having our goulash tonight, I made it ahead. Having it traditional style over buttery crushed boiled potatoes. What's your diet like by the way - just curious. From what you say on here, it sounds like you eat quite a bit of veggie stuff?

Here you go Sciencegeek, seeing as you clearly loved the other film about veganism so much, here's another one for you...

just kidding ;-)

Earthlings

To be honest I haven't watched this one, as I'm actually not brave enough to watch films about the animal industry. I find the news items we often see about undercover footage disturbing enough.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Jan 15 - 11:48 AM

I agree about keeping a few cans of beans on hand. Stopping what you're doing to boil then soak then cook (the old boil for 2 minutes, let sit for an hour, then simmer till ready) slows down dinner. I usually have red kidney beans and garbanzos (chick peas) in the pantry. For some reason the black beans in the can are more expensive, so I cook a batch to freeze in ~14oz jars and they get a few minutes in the microwave on defrost.

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 09 Jan 15 - 12:05 PM

I'd suggest instead that you read Nature Conservancy Novemeber/December issue on how they are working with Montana ranchers to preserve prairie open space for various species that are pushed to the edge by the trend to plow for crops.

There are humane methods for slaughtering animals... I took Slaughter Lab at the AgTech school across the valley from my University. I have raised meat animals for decades and made sure that I was able to do all aspects of the job...

Since not everyone can raise their own food, you really need to explore alternative sources if you have concerns. Only by supporting those alternatives will there be incentives for more to join the ranks.

But again... rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic - too many people will be a self correcting situation when the carrying capacity is exceeded.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 09 Jan 15 - 12:37 PM

Wondering if anyone here has had good vegetarian food out?

We very rarely eat out these days, but I've had good vegetarian Indian and Chinese food.

In particular I'd recommend a Vegetarian Thali, which is a set meal for one that you can get at Indian takeaways and restaurants in the UK. Typically, you get a couple of different vegetable curries, a rice dish, dahl, pickles and an Indian bread. Very filling! But lots of nice variety and flavour.

Not sure if you get British style Indian restaurants in the States?


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 10 Jan 15 - 09:23 AM

Hey CS. Re my diet I only have 3 hard and fast rules:

1. No flesh from animals other than fish or shellfish.

2. It's gotta taste good.

3. Eat in moderation. I think this is the most important one.

Other than that I try to bear in mind some of Michael Pollan's ideas. I've been flirting with vegetarianism for more than 20 years and cooking vegetarian recipes that long, then about 7-8 years ago, after several bouts of diverticulitis the last of which put me in the hospital, I cut out meat other than fish and haven't had problems in that area since. However, I think moderating my eating habits is mostly responsible for my present healthy state. My wife has similar dietary habits but makes an exception for steak fajitas at our favorite Mexican restaurant several times a year. She tortures me mercilessly when we go there as she shovels them down and I remind her that Hitler had one exception as well (liver dumplings). Fortunately, Iguana Mia has several good vegetarian dishes. Chinese and Thai restaurants seem to be the best bets for vegetarian dining around here, SW Florida, and we no longer have a good Indian restaurant that I'm aware of. I do stop at a Whole Foods market in Naples occasionally which has an cafeteria type setup with international fare and a small bar with some excellent beers on tap. I hope this answers your question(s).


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 10 Jan 15 - 09:42 AM

Just had a spag bol for our dinner this afternoon, made with frozen veggie mince. I like to include plenty of finely diced onions, carrots and celery. Plus garlic and herbs. I also include a little tin of those sliced black olives in brine (drained of course), cheap as chips but they bump up the flavours perfectly. I serve my spag bol over wholemeal spaghetti, we find it has more bite and is more satisfying. I always drizzle a little EVO over it after draining and returning to the pan before serving.

We haven't really talked about veggie meat subs. I find them to be pretty hit and miss. They can be useful in a dish like spag bol which is doesn't ask much of the sub, as most of the flavour comes from the other ingredients anyway. So the mince is really only there as a textural element - as well as bumping up the protein content for those who feel unsure about such things. So mince I find quite useful. Sometimes we get Quorn but as a rule I actually prefer the wheat and soya based veggie mince that a lot of supermarkets carry as a part of their frozen own brand vegetarian foods. I generally find that it is both less soft as well as less bland than Quorn.

One Quorn veggie product we do like, is their hotdogs. Hot dogs, like mince, are often the byproduct of the worst scraps of meat that have either been left lying around on the floor in the meat packing factory (this is true - a family member once worked at a meat packing factory) or otherwise sinew and fat that's been 'reclaimed' from the carcass with chemicals. I won't go near these kinds of meat 'products' and find vegetarian alternatives simply less 'yucky.' Again, with hot dogs, the majority of the flavour comes from all the gubbins you shove onto them, like fried onions, mustard and relish - or whatever.

I can't recommend the plain old brown 'veggie burgers' much. Not gained much of a taste for them myself. But I quite like the 'Southern Fried chicken-style fillets' you can sometimes get. These can make a decent alternative to KFC style burgers (which once upon a time, I used to love!) I haven't been able to get hold of these for a while, so maybe the place who used to produce them has stopped doing so. Something similar happened a while back with veggie mince and hot dogs, which mysteriously disappeared from the shelves of UK supermarkets all at once. Anyhoo, good in a decent roll (like ciabatta) with some coleslaw, pickles and salad and a hash brown!

Anyone looking to cut back meat, should have a looksee at the alternatives available. It's good to cook, I like it. And I like cooking whole foods from scratch. But a pack of veggie sausages in the freezer can be a useful standby for those times you're out of time.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 10 Jan 15 - 10:40 AM

I once tried Quorn to make a lasagne for vegetarians. Terrible. Couldn't get any flavour into it no matter what I tried. I find it somewhat amusing that some vegetarian foods simply have to look just like meat, for reasons that completely elude me. The Quorn mince I tried was a case in point. Veggie things shaped and coloured just like sausages are another. Why, I once saw a vegetarian "lamb" chop that looked exactly like a normal lamb chop!


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 10 Jan 15 - 10:53 AM

Flirting with vegetarianism for twenty years? Me too. I first went veggie in my mid teens, at the same time that I taught myself to cook using 80's style wholefood veggie cookbooks in fact. Since then I've continued to be a minimal meat eater, and vegetarian for periods, but lately I've been excluding more animal foods. He's recently had a diagnosis of diverticularitis too, and has realised that meat doesn't do his tum any good. So he's going the same way.

Right now I'm making Seitan (pronounced SAY-tan) or 'Buddhist Meat' for the first time ever, using Vital Wheat Gluten flour. Really odd dough, super rubbery and not at all sticky.

This is the recipe I"m following, dead simple, quick and easy (barring the 1hr steam time).Hail Seitan! Slicing Sausage for Sandwiches. Not too sure about the flavourings in this recipe, we'll see. If I'm not keen I'll just try a different combo, like tomato puree, cayenne and oregano. Or Mushroom stock, soy sauce and black pepper. Or apple, sage and grainy mustard.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 10 Jan 15 - 12:00 PM

I've made the below recipe loads of time, it's my go-to for a something cosy in the evening, that isn't too unhealthy. On the stove now..

Vegan Brown Rice Pudding

In a heavy bottomed pan with a lid, put:

1 US Cup short grain brown rice 1 litre plain soya milk 1/2 US Cup dried cranberries (or other dried fruit) 1/3 US Cup maple syrup 1 stick cinnamon 1 tsp natural vanilla flavouring 2 tsp mixed spice

Bring the contents of the pan to the boil. Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and put on the lid. Cook for about 50 minutes, or until rice is nicely tender (keep an eye on it and stir occasionally) Stir in 1 tbsp of ground flax seeds (this will make it creamy) Serve.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Jan 15 - 02:29 PM

Eggplant Parmesan for dinner tonight, using previously breaded and sauteed slices of aubergine from my garden. This will be a personal sized dish. I'll thaw then warm them to crispness in the oven. Topped with provalone and Parmesan cheese and eaten with a side of spaghetti and a vegetarian spaghetti sauce, most of the ingredients also canned or frozen from my garden. I sometimes make Parm in a casserole dish and alternate layers of breaded chicken and eggplant, but more often I make it with just the eggplant. Eggplant sliced very thin and sauteed is also excellent as a layer in lasagna, another dish that is easily vegetarian (I do use cheese in both dishes).

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 11 Jan 15 - 02:48 AM

My seitan slicing sausage worked out surprisingly well. Mr said it was a bit like doner meat, finely textured and savoury. Next time though I'm going to include chickpea flour in with the Vital Wheat Gluten, as VWG alone makes the finished sausage too rubbery - it needs something else in there to soften up the texture. Some people add mashed cooked beans, some add tofu, some use plain wholemeal flour, others use chickpea flour as it's got a good savoury flavour of it's own. I will be doing that as I've got chickpea flour in the cupboard. Discovering this stuff, will mean no more money spent on meat subs for sandwiches. Occasionally I get those meat-free slices from the chiller cabinet and they're quite expensive for what you get. Plus they typically taste pretty bland too. I'm going to try a seitan Chickie herb sausage later today

SRS: I've never tried aubergine parmesan, it looks nice though. There's a vegan version here, using nutritional yeast instead of parmesan:

http://minimalistbaker.com/vegan-eggplant-parmesan/

VEGAN EGGPLANT PARMESAN

PRINT PREP TIME 45 mins COOK TIME 30 mins TOTAL TIME > 1 hour 15 mins

Simple, 10 ingredient vegan parmesan that yields perfectly crispy, savory eggplant that pairs perfectly with red sauce and pasta of your choice! A healthy filling dinner even picky eaters will love. Author: Minimalist Baker Recipe type: Entree Cuisine: Vegan, Italian Serves: 2 INGREDIENTS EGGPLANT PARMESAN 1 medium eggplant (as narrow as possible - see notes for more tips) 1/4 cup unbleached all purpose flour (or other flour of choice) 1 cup panko breadcrumbs (GF for gluten free eaters) 2 Tbsp vegan parmesan + more for serving (or sub 1 Tbsp nutritional yeast) 1 tsp dried oregano (or 2 tsp fresh) 1/4 tsp sea salt 1/2 cup unsweetened plain almond milk (or other neutral milk) 1 tsp cornstarch PASTA + SAUCE 8 ounces pasta (such as linguini, but any kind will do, including veggie noodles or gluten free) 2 cups marinara sauce
INSTRUCTIONS Slice eggplant into thin rounds slightly less than 1/2 inch thick, and sprinkle each side liberally with sea salt. Arrange in a circular pattern in a colander and place in the sink to draw out the bitter taste of the eggplant. Let rest for 15 minutes, then rinse and arrange on a clean absorbent kitchen towel. Top with another clean dish towel and lay a baking sheet on top. Place something heavy on top, such as a cast iron skillet, to thoroughly dry for at least 10 minutes. In the meantime, preheat oven to 400 degrees F and line a baking sheet with foil and spritz with nonstick spray. Also, if making pasta, bring water to a boil in a large saucepan. Prepare your dipping stations by placing almond milk + cornstarch in one bowl; flour in another bowl; and bread crumbs + sea salt + oregano + vegan parmesan (or nutritional yeast) in another bowl. Once thoroughly dry, dip eggplant slices in flour, then almond milk mixture, then breadcrumbs. Arrange on the baking sheet and pop in oven to bake for a total of 20-30 minutes. IMPORTANT STEP: While the eggplant is in the oven, bring a large skillet to medium heat. Once hot, add 2 Tbsp olive oil (or sub canola or grape seed) and pull 3-4 eggplant rounds out of the oven at a time and sauté to give them extra crisp and texture. Cook for ~2 minutes on each side (or browned) and then return to oven to continue crisping. Do this in batches until all rounds are browned. While eggplant is browning in the oven, prepare marinara. I prefer adding my tomato sauce and spices to a serving bowl and microwaving to warm, but you could also heat it on the stove. Set aside. Once done cooking, drain pasta and cover with a towel to keep warm. Set aside. To serve: Plate pasta and eggplant slices and marinara in a dish as a dipping sauce. Additional vegan parmesan cheese makes an excellent topper. Leftovers don't really reheat well, so it's best when fresh. See notes for additional tips on crispy eggplant!


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 11 Jan 15 - 02:53 AM

Folk in the UK will probably remember this. Royal Family xmas special, featuring the sons new vegetarian girlfriend. Nanna says "Oooh that's a shame for you."

Can she have 'wafer thin' ham?


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 11 Jan 15 - 09:35 AM

Update on Garlic & Herb Chick'n Seitan, surprisingly OK. Better than Quorn, and cheaper too.

In a largish bowl, put your dry ingredients:

1 loosely packed cup Vital Wheat Gluten flour 1/4 cup chickpea flour 2 tsp dried herbs 2 tbsp nutritional yeast 1/2 tsp black pepper

In a jug, put your 'wet' ingredients:

Finely minced garlic cloves (I used several) 1 vegetable stock cube 1 cup hot water 1 - 2 tbsp sunflower oil Stir and allow to dissolve

Mix the wet and dry ingredients and knead in the bowl for a few minutes. It should congeal nicely and not be too sticky.

Get a steamer ready on the hob. Oil some kitchen foil and loosely shape your dough into a 'log'. Roll up nice and firmly into a fat sausage shape and twist the ends tight.

Pop into steamer, put on lid. Steam nice and hot for 1hr, don't forget to keep the water topped up if necessary.

Leave to cool before removing from foil and slicing.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 11 Jan 15 - 09:52 AM

I did not think about freezing eggplant. I do grow it and have been wanting to find more uses for it. So, do you slice it, bread, then freeze it? I'd love to know more.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Jan 15 - 12:35 PM

You have to cook it before freezing it or it doesn't work well. I learned that through trial and error. I dice some of it then saute, others I quarter and saute, or I bread and fry, then they go into the freezer on trays to freeze before bagging.

Other garden crops can go in fresh - I slice or dice in the way I think I'll use them (or in a unique shape, like I tend to make long thin slices of the hot peppers so I recognize them months later if I don't see the label on the bag). Arrange the peppers, onions, okra, whatever, on a baking sheet and freeze, then pour the frozen item into the seal-a-meal or heavy ziplock bag and back into the freezer.

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 11 Jan 15 - 01:57 PM

Thank you so much, I will try that. I do freeze much of what I grow, tomatoes, beans, asparagus and so on. But I had never done so with aubergene . Thanks again.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 11 Jan 15 - 07:38 PM

When it comes to freezing, the only beans I freeze are my broad beans. I harvest them when they are slightly on the small side, as I want them whole and tender, and I can't be doing with that silly idea you get in some recipes of slipping the skins off them first. Not enough hours in the day! I blanch them for a minute first. I grow lots of French beans and runner beans, but I find these turn watery after freezing so I don't bother. Nice to have stuff just in season anyway. One year I tried salting down a crop of runner beans, but they came out disgusting. I can't grow aubergines/eggplants because my climate is too cool and humid (I have tried). The ones you buy in supermarkets usually have horrid tough skins and have gone seedy/fluffy in the middle. Useless. Lamentable, cos I love 'em!


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 11 Jan 15 - 07:43 PM

I finally got around to the Red Bean Goulash recipe that CS linked to below (eating an abundance of fresh fish the last two days) and it came out pretty good for a first effort. I followed the recipe pretty close and served it with wide egg noodles because my mother used to serve her goulash that way though her noodles were homemade. I've got some Yukon Gold potatoes I'll serve it with next. It's going to become a regular for me, thanks CS.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 12 Jan 15 - 04:54 AM

Gillymor, we're going to make bean (and mushroom) goulash a regular in our home too. Both of us really enjoyed the earthy flavours. I used 2 tbsp paprika, 1 tbsp smoked paprika and 1 level tbsp chilli powder in our brew. I didn't have as many beans as the recipe asks for because we were low, so I added roughly half a pound of sliced chestnut mushrooms to help beef it up a bit, and they really worked. I simmered mine partly with the lid off which helped the sauce to reduce and come out more thick and stew-like, which we both preferred. Thanks for reminding me, I have all the ingredients in stock, I may make it again later.

As for frozen veg, we freeze our windowsill birds-eye chillies, they seem to work out just fine. Still burning hot! You only need three or four to make a curry that makes your eyes water. Mr's parents gave us home grown garden peas already bagged and frozen, and they were sweet and delicious.
I've also been gifted frozen home-grown peppers, which are not right for everything, but fine in stewy dishes where the texture will break down anyway. The bought supermarket sliced frozen peppers I've had have been just horrible though. I buy frozen baby broad beans and find them just fine, we also get given them bagged and frozen from his parents after the growing season is over.
During the cold months I buy frozen whole-leaf spinach which I find excellent for cooking purposes, though I've never tried freezing my own chard - I can only imagine how much hassle that would be due to the volumes involved. Frozen green beans aren't as lovely as fresh, but they're OK, so I do buy them. I find frozen swede to be unpleasantly watery, also sprouts, cauliflower and broccoli.

We may end up freezing more this year in the way of vegetables ourselves though, as we're planning to do a bit more in the garden this year.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 12 Jan 15 - 05:20 AM

One thing I find really good is freezing fresh herbs. Parsley, coriander work well. Cut the whole plant high on the main stem, put it into a plastic bag. Freeze whole. Once frozen smash the bag to crush the contents. Tip into a smaller container and return to the freezer.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 12 Jan 15 - 07:13 AM

CS, I was thinking about adding mushrooms to the goulash as well and will do so next time. Shulman recommends pureeing a cup of the beans to add thicken the sauce in her recipe.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 12 Jan 15 - 09:19 AM

tender herbs take more care in preserving to keep their best qualities.

http://www.preservingyourharvest.com/FreezingMint.html

about.com is a great resource, as well

Freezing Basil

If you simply stick a bunch of fresh basil into the freezer it will be discolored and mushy when it thaws. Yuck. The reason for this is that enzymes that decompose fresh plant material can survive freezing temperatures and work on the food even while it is in the freezer.

Fortunately, there is a way to freeze fresh basil so that it keeps its emerald green color and lovely flavor. You just have to blanch it first.

Blanching kills off those decomposing enzymes. To blanch fresh basil, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Have a big bowl of ice water ready.

Once the water is boiling, dip your bunch of basil into it just until the basil wilts. This shouldn't take more than a few seconds. You don't want to cook out the flavor of the basil, just kill off those decomposing enzymes.

As soon as the basil has wilted, immediately transfer it to the ice water. This eliminates the residual heat that would otherwise continue cooking the basil.

Pat the blanched basil dry. Strip the leaves off the stems and transfer to freezer bags and freeze. Tip: spread the leaves thinly in the bags and store flat. This will enable you to break off just what you need when you want to use some - but not all - of a bag of frozen herbs.

Freezing Basil Oil or Pesto

The blanching method above is the first step to ensuring your basil oil or pesto comes out of the freezer with the same vibrant color and taste that freshly made pesto or herbal oil has.

After you've blanched, chilled, and patted your basil dry, strip the leaves from the stems. Put them in a blender or food processor and puree, adding enough extra-virgin olive oil to make a smooth, somewhat liquid paste. Or simply use the blanched leaves to make your favorite pesto recipe before freezing.

If you just dump your oil or pesto into a big freezer container and freeze it, you'll have to take out the whole brick of pesto or oil and use it within a week. Better is to freeze it in small containers, or even better use one of the following two methods.

Freezing Pesto or Herbal Oil in Freezer Bags

Pour or spoon your oil or pesto into freezer bags. Put in just enough to cover the surface of the bag when it is horizontal. Freeze flat (horizontal). What you'll end up with is a pesto "pancake" from which you can break off just what you need.

Freezing Pesto or Herbal Oil in Freezer Containers

Alternatively, fill ice cube trays with your basil oil or pesto. Freeze, then pop out the cubes and transfer them to freezer containers (or freezer bags). Each cube will be approximately 1 tablespoon of basil oil or pesto.

Basil Vinegar

Basil vinegar is wonderful in salad dressings and marinades. One of my favorite herbal vinegars is made from the purple basil I grow in my garden preserved in white wine vinegar. The vinegar is aromatic and takes on a beautiful magenta color from the purple basil.

To make basil vinegar, follow these basic instructions for making herbal vinegars. If you grow your own basil, you can use the flowers that you pinch off to make this vinegar.

Basil Salt

Basil salt is delicious in pasta sauce recipes and on grain salads. Just leave out any other salt called for in your recipe and use the basil salt instead.

To make basil salt, substitute fresh basil leaves for the rosemary in this recipe for herb salt.

Basil Butter

To make basil butter (fabulous on pasta!), use 2 tablespoons of finely chopped fresh basil leaves in this basic herb butter recipe.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,cs
Date: 12 Jan 15 - 10:01 AM

Pesto can also be frozen in IceCube trays. As can garlic and herb buttes. And premade roux of flour and oil or butter for thickening soups and sauces.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 12 Jan 15 - 12:17 PM

We had vegan 'haggis' for our dinner today served with neeps & tatties (mashed swede and potatoes), steamed broccoli and roasted parsnips and carrots. He noticed that I'd given myself the lions share of the broccoli Hehe! I could eat a whole head of that stuff, on it's own. In fact I have done so for lunch before now. We're just like a pair of children counting how many baked beans they each have in case one gets more than the other one. :D

Broccoli is one of my top five veg. Along with spring greens, brussels sprouts and chard or spinach. All steamed (apart from chard which sets my teeth on edge if it isn't boiled) for preference. The only vegetable I find actively unpleasant is okra, jsut because of the goopy factor.

What are the other poster's fave vegetables here? And how do you like to prepare them?


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 12 Jan 15 - 12:24 PM

Mine is baby bok choi sautéed in butter and a cornflour slurry, then drizzled with sesame oil. goes great with veggie spring rolls and basmati rice.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 13 Jan 15 - 03:22 AM

One thing I like to do with both spring greens or savoy, and brussels sprouts is quickly saute them in a little olive oil and butter and crushed garlic. Sprouts should be halved to expose the tight layers of leaves they are comprised of - the butter seeps into the sprouts and makes them very tasty.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 13 Jan 15 - 08:56 AM

5 favorite vegetables: 1. Asparagus, steamed or roasted and especially in omelets with mild white cheese 2. Brussels Sprouts, steamed or roasted 3. Parsnips, roasted or boiled 4. Silver Queen Corn, Boiled or roasted on a grill. 5. Beets, roasted or boiled and the greens sauteed in olive oil 6. Sweet Potatoes, any which way Honorable mention: Artichokes, broccoli, hearts of palm, cauliflower, snap peas


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Jan 15 - 01:23 PM

I grow things I like to eat, and in some instances I've learned to eat things that I know grow well here. Okra, for example. I never had much to do with it but my next door neighbor was having trouble getting some to grow so I planted it and gave her most of the pods, with the proviso that she should teach me how to make something with it (not boiled!). Fried okra is wonderful. I've used it in some stir fries and I have a few recipes to try out.

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 14 Jan 15 - 02:49 AM

I didn't know that about okra Stilly. I can see why it would be good fried, as the pods are rich and firm (if I remember correctly).

I can also understand how okra became a staple among poor communities, whatever it is that it releases, thickens broth and would fill bellies. Probably in a similar way to barley or oats and the way they have been used in traditional rural broths here in the UK.

Having grown up with oats and barley, I like the way they thicken up things, but not having grown up with okra, I find the mucilage it releases strange and unpleasant!


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 14 Jan 15 - 05:05 AM

Interesting idea. This chef's restaurant isn't vegan or vegetarian, but focuses on utilising sustainable ingredients.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/profiles/bruno-loubet-i-am-not-vegan-or-vegetarian-but-beef-is-out-9970350.html

Bruno Loubet, the Michelin-starred French chef famed for his classical meat dishes, is banning beef from the menu at his restaurant Grain Store.

The large, bright 200-seat restaurant, which opened in King's Cross, London, 18 months ago, has already garnered attention for making vegetables the main attraction while fish or meat take second billing. Grain Store, named London Restaurant of the Year last year at the Sustainable Restaurant Awards, uses free-range meat, sustainably sourced fish, and herbs as well as edible flowers from a community garden located next door.

But now Loubet is going one step further and plans to cut beef – which currently features in just one dish at Grain Store – from the restaurant's spring menu.

Loubet believes that, given the damage that the beef industry does to the planet ( 10kg of grain is needed to produce 1kg of beef), by serving beef, he is undoing all the good done by having a sustainable restaurant. "If I didn't I would be untrue to everything," the 53-year-old said. "I have not eaten beef for three months. I do eat it if I am in the restaurant somewhere. I am not vegetarian or vegan but I eat much less meat."


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 14 Jan 15 - 09:16 AM

"Loubet believes that, given the damage that the beef industry does to the planet ( 10kg of grain is needed to produce 1kg of beef), by serving beef, he is undoing all the good done by having a sustainable restaurant."

WTF!?! The logical disconnect here is appalling... The problem with the beef industry is the agribusiness concerns that want to produce "cheap" beef no matter the cost to the environment. If raising beef is inherently wrong, why the hell is the Nature Conservancy allowing it on their Montana Ranch? Instead, they are promoting environmentally sound management on their farm and those of the "renter" which is helping to restore the habitat for threatened and endangered prairie species.

He may be a good chef, but he's a lousy conservationist... buy meat from sustainable producers... help keep them in business!!! Otherwise, the only alternative is big farms.

This "let's throw out the baby with the bathwater" mentality drives me nuts... MODERATION and CONSIDERATION is what is needed, not knee jerk reactions. That's what makes for good applied science.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Chanteyranger
Date: 14 Jan 15 - 01:01 PM

I'm late getting back to this thread, and pleased to see so much discussion. Freda Underhill, I just want to correct one thing about my diet. It's not a low carb diet, as I eat plenty of grains and beans, just not highly processed grains such as white rice. No white flour, and very, very little whole grain flour.

my latest medical exam shows even more reduction in my A1c and cholesterol.

Earlier on in this thread, it was mentioned that tofu would not be the best choice in the stroganoff recipe. point well taken that seitan might be a better choice. however, I found that Isa Chandra's recipe, which uses tofu, to be delicious. It's got to be extra firm tofu, though, to make the recipe really work. I 'll try it with seitan, which, given seitan's consistency, will probably be even better, thanks.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 14 Jan 15 - 02:42 PM

Land management folks are finding that letting cattle onto an area for enough time to graze off the grass then moving them to the next area helps restore a lot of the vitality of the region. The droppings and urine and walking around on all of it stimulates biological activity in the soil, as would have happened when land wasn't fenced and bison travelled over the land in such a way, moving on as soon as the grass was eaten.

It not only helps the soil, it helps predators, prairie chicken, etc. Researchers found that when they introduced wolves back into Yellowstone that predation kept the elk and other ungulates under control, reducing over-grazing, and in general improving the diversity of the animal life and the health of the land as far as water run-off.

You can take the slime out of okra if you soak it briefly in vinegar. I have a Middle Eastern cookbook that has an extensive section of front matter with lots of methods, tips, and substitutions. One of these days I'm going to try the vinegar trick then make some kind of casserole. And I think the vinegar (or fermentation) is why pickled okra isn't slimy.

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 15 Jan 15 - 08:39 AM
stopped at the Asian market last night and since it was quiet asked about one of my favorite items that I haven't seen on the shelves for sometime. so I checked out the webiste for Companion Foods to give them the info to order a case:

http://www.evercompanion.com/

I've been eating their products for forty years and they have been consistent and good all that time. You might want to check them out and maybe get your local market to order for you.

Saute their braised gluten with asparagus tips for a real treat.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 15 Jan 15 - 01:24 PM

Sciencegeek: "Saute their braised gluten with asparagus tips for a real treat."

I've never had braised gluten - though I have recently successfully made gluten/seitan, in slicing sausage form, which has been a very popular discovery in our house - but it sounds good.

I have had braised tofu (see here: Braised Tofu ) and that's also really nice. Super savoury.

It's flaky because it's composed of layers of a soya-based food called 'yuba' which is created from the skin that forms on cooling vats of soya milk, so people often treat it a bit like tuna fish in salads and sandwiches.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 15 Jan 15 - 01:55 PM

think of braised gluten as chewy puffy dumplings... due to the gluten... that are in a seasoned sauce... safflower oil or chili or curry flavored. That's why it's used as mock meat... it's the closest in texture to meat proteins. They can form in so that it appears to resemble duck or abalone...

I can polish off a can in a sitting... just heat it up and add to cooked rice or noodles. or just stir fry with other ingredients... very versatile and keep on hand in the pantry or the office for a quick lunch. I feel like I spend more waking hours at work than at home...


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 16 Jan 15 - 03:56 AM

We had that bean goulash again this week. I've frozen half to be eaten again next week.

I've upgraded the ratio of vegetables to beans quite considerably. I've also simplified the method slightly, so my current version of this recipe looks like what follows. I'm posting this as much for my own reference as for any one else, as I have a horrible habit of forgetting to make notes when I cook:

Bean Goulash

* Peel and chop 3 onions, 3-4 carrots, 4 sweet peppers (red or green), and the cloves from a whole bulb of garlic. Thickly slice 1lb of mushrooms.

* Heat 2 tbsp vegetable oil in a large pan and add veg. Add a little salt to help the veg to sweat and soften and saute for 5-10 minutes.

* Stir in 2 heaped tablespoons paprika, 1 tablespoon smoked paprika, and 1 level tablespoon chilli pepper. Stir for 2-3 minutes.

* Add 4 x 400g cans of drained red kidney beans (OR the contents of a 500g pack of dried kidney beans, which have been soaked overnight and well cooked earlier) 2 pints of vegetable stock, 2 tbsp tomato puree, 1 heaped teaspoon dried oregano, 1 tsp ground black pepper.

* Bring to the boil, add lid and reduce the heat. Cook on a brisk-ish simmer for half an hour. Stir occasionally.

* Stir in 2 tbsp vinegar and 1 tsp sugar.

* Remove lid and continue to simmer for a further half an hour. Stir occasionally. The sauce should reduce somewhat during this time.

* Salt to taste. Serve over mashed or crushed potatoes. Garnish liberally with chopped parsley.

Perfect warming winter fare.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: sciencegeek
Date: 16 Jan 15 - 05:49 AM

our temperatures have been below freezing for the past week, so bean burritos made a nice quick but filling supper last night. Refried pinto beans, chopped onions wrapped in a flour tortilla and lots of enchilada sauce to give it a kick.

The best refried beans I've had were cooked in bacon grease, but there has been a surge in vegetarian options. Whatever floats your boat.. but I go for the flavor. Same goes for Columbian red beans & rice... yum


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 16 Jan 15 - 06:22 AM

CS, I want to bring up the sweet/sour contrast in my next batch of bean goulash. I'm thinking more vinegar and red sweet peppers. Any ideas?


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 16 Jan 15 - 08:40 AM

I was directing my last question re bean goulash to any and all.

I get cans of seasoned black beans with jalapenos from Trader Joe's for a buck a piece. I nuke the beans and put some in a whole grain naan or pita pocket add onions a little bit of Chi-Chi's medium salsa and some 2% shredded cheddar. Quick, cheap and tasty. I get about 4 out of a can.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 16 Jan 15 - 09:15 AM

to get fuller flavor from beans, cumin is a must as well as unsweetened dark chocolate... gives a fuller richer flavor...

add lime juice and a sprig of cilantro for brighter taste

I add dried garlic chips to my simmering chili to get deeper flavor, along with extra cumin and chocolate... and did I mention at least 4 types of beans, white and yellow corn and pazole(canned hominey). Everyone in the pool!


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 16 Jan 15 - 09:36 AM

Gillymor, for the sweet element you could add in some diced sweet potato maybe, or switch it for the carrots? I think it would be really quite nice, golden soft sweet chunks of sweet potato in the sauce. You can also buy 'sweet paprika' but I'm not sure how sweet that is, probably not very!

As for the sour element, lemon is I believe a commonly used ingredient in goulash (might want to check that though). Plus sour cream is often used dolloped on top when serving, adding an acidic tang to counterpoint the rich earthiness of the goulash.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 16 Jan 15 - 11:03 AM

Thanks CS, I like the idea of sweet potatoes and lemon. I'll experiment.

I'm making Brazilian Black Bean Stew this weekend for the football games on Sunday. I follow the recipe pretty closely but leave out the orange juice and zest which doesn't work for me. I'll try adding chocolate as well.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 16 Jan 15 - 11:20 AM

I'm composing my online grocery shopping order right now (he hates going to the supermarket and I can't blame him either) and I've got Piri Piri Seasoning blend, garlic granules, Jerk Seasoning blend, pickled sliced jalapenos, wholegrain mustard, apple juice, and crushed chilli flakes all on my shopping list for my homemade seitan slicing sausage production line! Don't worry they won't all be going in at once, I plan to do a variety of versions, like Spicy Italian style, British pork and apple style, and a couple of others. I plan to make at least one a week for our lunch box sandwiches. He's also inclined to use sliced seitan sausage, instead of cheese because he thinks it's so tasty! Plus you can cram loads of salad in there, and unlike some sarni ingredients the seitan doesn't make everything go soggy.

Today we're having an evening 'all day breakfast' with veggie sausages, baked beans, home-cut oven baked chips, mushrooms, fried egg and bread. I give him double what I have to keep my caloric intake from going too crazy..


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 17 Jan 15 - 03:19 AM

It's interesting how many versions of the 'beans and rice' theme you find around the world.

Numerous nations seems to have some variant on this combination, with a unique set of seasonings to go with them.

The Americas in particular, seem particularly fond of rice and beans. It's interesting to note however, that it wasn't a staple until Spanish colonisers appeared on the scene and introduced rice from Asia to local cuisines. Their African slaves apparently played an even stronger role at the same time, by introducing African rice to local American cuisines.

Wiki on Rice & Beans


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: sciencegeek
Date: 17 Jan 15 - 03:37 AM

started as cheap food to feed slaves, but it doesn't hurt that it's healthy and tasty stuff.

I wonder how much it was to replace amaranth, which the Spanish banned as too heathen ... imagine wheat being banned because it was used to make the "host" in Catholic masses...

religious zealotry knows no bounds...


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 17 Jan 15 - 08:29 AM

Any idea how much baker's chocolate to add to 3 cups (dry) black beans?

I couldn't find any google answers but did find a number of recipes for black bean brownies, some with avocado or sweet potato. Interesting.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 17 Jan 15 - 08:44 AM

Gillymor, three cups in volume, sounds roughly the same as 1lb in weight to me. I use 1lb beans to make up my chilli and I add a good 2 tbsp cocoa powder along with 1tbsp dark brown sugar to enrichen the sauce. I don't know about bakers chocolate though.

Loads of vegan recipes out there for using vegetables in puddings and cakes! Avocado is the latest thing to use to make vegan chocolate mousse :) I tend to use silken tofu for vegan puds, but avocado is richer and fattier and probably more appropriate texturally.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 17 Jan 15 - 11:50 AM

Has anyone on here ever had cheeseless pizza?

I've had one attempt so far, and it didn't really come out that tasty. Just pureed beans and spinach! It wasn't good. Though I suspect I could have made the cannellini bean puree more 'olive-oily' - after all beans and bread do go together well. I think I was too stingy with the fat content, maybe that would have made all the difference when trying to swap out the cheese.

Mr loves his mozzarella, but I'm pretty much cheese-free now. I'd like to be able to make a cheese-free version for me, and a mozzarella smothered one for him at the same time. I make super thin crust, so it's not as bad as it sounds, and I usually only eat half in one sitting - sometimes he'll actually eat his and my leftovers which is fine for him as he burns a LOT of calories at work.

A traditional pizza style thing I've seen is pissaladiere (sp?). I think it's French. That's topped with caramelised onions and olives and sounds bloody great. Anyone had one of those on hols?

Does anyone have any completely random ideas? I'm wondering if olive tapenade might be good, or pesto.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,Ed
Date: 17 Jan 15 - 01:06 PM

Pissaladière traditionally contains anchovies, but I don't see why you couldn't make it without them if you wanted it to be vegan. Just add more olives, I guess.

Nigel Slater's recipe looks a good starting point.

Pureed beans on a pizza don't sound at all appealing to me. I think that onions are key here. Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's Kale and Onion Pizza sounds good.

Yes, I know it contains a little cheese, but maybe another starting point?


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 17 Jan 15 - 02:45 PM

Focaccia bread is like pizza crust with olive oil, fresh or dry herbs, onion and garlic power, and I usually sprinkle on a little provalone and romano, but I bet instead you could sprinkle on some tofu cheese and some of the yeast products that are meant to mimic Parmesan/romano cheeses. Or just stop at the olive oil, salt, garlic powder and herbs (I use fresh oregano and basil from the garden, or some of my frozen basil sprinkled over the top. Frozen it stays greener longer). I like tomatoes on pizza but I don't always put on tomato sauce any more. I thawed some sauce for a pizza a few weeks ago and it turned out to be my Lydia's summer simmered sauce - a meatless tomato sauce with diced eggplant. I spread it on anyway and it was wonderful.

A thing you learn when living in the Southwest of the US is that just about anything can be served in a tortilla. The flat bread can be served fresh and warm and soft (corn or wheat), or something can be put into it, rolled or folded, then sauteed or baked. Make a spicy bean mix then put some in a tortilla for a burrito and serve it topped with a zesty salsa or pico de gallo, and guacamole on top and you have a beautiful, delicious and festive meal.

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 17 Jan 15 - 03:02 PM

Stilly, Woof! Aubergine pizza. Rich and creamy and bang on target with the other flavours (bean puree just wasn't) Beeb has one here that includes pesto and goats cheese, but not much goats cheese so I reckon you could easily go without it:

http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/pesto-pizza-aubergine-goats-cheese

Ed, nice one with the onion and kale one too! I like spinach on pizza for it's richness, but it can be rather watery and consequentially soggy. Kale, or even spring greens, would be a great alternative. I love my dark greens and they would be perfect combined with caramelised onions.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: sciencegeek
Date: 18 Jan 15 - 07:06 AM

if using a brick of baker's chocolate, I just break of a square at at time to add to my chili and taste along the way... lol since I never make it the same way twice. To me chili is like soup or stew... use what's at hand and maybe experiment along the way... :)

as a change from pizza and good for those with gluten issues, try tostadas ... corn tortillas fried or baked flat (not folded like for tacos) and then covered with seasoned beans, lettuce, tomato, onion, cheese & salsa.... OK, I know no restraint here. Hubby is not so fond because after the first bite it falls all apart... but I love it!


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 18 Jan 15 - 08:46 AM

That's just what I did, SG. I was looking for a jumping off point and I started with an ounce and put another 1/2 oz. into the soup. It came out pretty good and the chocolate worked well with the orange juice, which I decided to add after all. Thanks to you and CS. The black beans and the large snook that I caught last night will make a nice feast for 4 today.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 18 Jan 15 - 10:47 AM

I use naan bread as a base for Pizza, it is perfect for that. I only top it with veg, Peppers, mushro


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Feb 15 - 12:35 AM

I made what I suppose are vegetarian dog treats - they have eggs - because one of my dogs is allergic to wheat and chicken fat (which are both prevalent in pet food and treats these days). This recipe uses brown rice flour, pumpkin, eggs, powdered milk, salt, and a little dried parsley. They were actually quite easy and I got some bone-shaped cutters so there will be no confusion between human and dog treats.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 21 Feb 15 - 11:18 AM

Whoop!

Also made vegan loaf cake today, is good! This recipe uses jarred apple sauce instead of eggs and vegetable marge instead of butter, works really well I think. Next time I'm adding diced apple and chopped walnuts to the raisins. Probably best to use a food mixer for this one as you need to beat quite well to get everything blended.

Raisin Loaf Cake

Oven 180C / 2lb loaf tin

Beat 4oz margarine with 8oz brown sugar and 8oz apple sauce (I used cheapo supermarket own brand stuff).
Then beat in 14oz wholemeal flour, 3 - 4 tsp baking powder and 7floz soya milk plus 1tbsp lemon juice.
Pour into greased & lined loaf tin and bake for about 1&1/2 hours (mine took a little longer but my oven is funny).
(Cover in parchment or foil half way through baking if it's looking too brown.)

Turn out and cool before cutting.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST
Date: 21 Feb 15 - 09:41 AM

Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 31 Dec 14 - 04:04 AM

Sciencegeek, lentil shepherd's pie is great! One of our staple meals during colder weather. For some reason potatoes and lentil go wonderfully together - very satisfying.

This is the recipe I use, which doesn't include mushrooms (though I think I will next time)

Lentil Shepherd's Pie

Ingredients:

1 large onion, chopped 2 medium carrots, sliced 2 sticks of celery, sliced 1 – 2 tbsp vegetable oil 8 oz / 250 g whole lentils (brown, green or speckled – just not the red split variety) 1 & 1/2 pints / 900 ml boiling water 1 tin chopped tomatoes 1 tbsp yeast extract, Vegemite or Vecon 2 sprigs fresh rosemary or 2 tsp dried 1/2 tsp black pepper 1 tbsp brown sauce 2 & 1/2 lbs / 1 kg potatoes a bunch of spring onions, finely sliced 2 oz dairy-free margarine (and a little extra to dot over the top of the mash) A splash of non-dairy milk to let down the mash 2 tsp course cornmeal / polenta 1 tsp paprika

Method:

Heat oil in a large saucepan and add the chopped onion. Once softened add the sliced carrots and celery and continue to saute for a few more minutes. Add the lentils, water, black pepper, tinned tomatoes, rosemary and brown sauce. Bring to boil, lower the heat, put on lid, and simmer for about 45 minutes or til most of the liquid is absorbed and the lentils are tender. Remove the rosemary stalks and tip into an ovenproof dish.

While the lentils are cooking peel and chop the potatoes. Add to a large pan with plenty of boiling water, bring back to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes, until the potatoes are cooked through and soft when pierced with a knife. Strain the potatoes and mash them well with the spring onions, margarine and a splash of non-dairy milk.

Spoon the champ over the lentils and fork the surface. Sprinkle the paprika and cornmeal evenly over the mash, add a sprinkle of salt then dot the surface with a few teaspoons of dairy-free margarine.

bake at 190C for 30 – 40 minutes, until the centre is piping hot.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: sciencegeek Date: 31 Dec 14 - 04:58 AM

what I find fascinating is the origins of the variety of foods coming from so many different parts of the world... and climates.

Potatoes and peas in an Indian curry, tomato sauce with pasta...

the list gets pretty long without even trying.

what I find distressing is the increasing number of folks with food allergies... there is something going on, environmental or cultural or a mix of both, that is not good. This is an area in great need of good research.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 31 Dec 14 - 09:31 AM

For those interested in reducing their meat consumption but not inclined to go the whole way, the idea of 'Weekday Veg' might appeal.

It's pretty simple, five days a week no meat fish or fowl, then at the weekend you eat whatever you want to.

I think it's quite a sensible and easy way to structure meat reduction. I guess it's the natural step up from meat-free mondays (if any of you currently do that?)

Here's a short Ted Talk from the guy who created the eco site 'Treehugger' describing how he decided to reduce his meat consumption by 70%:

http://www.ted.com/talks/graham_hill_weekday_vegetarian


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,sciencegeek Date: 31 Dec 14 - 09:45 AM

I can get artichoke hearts in bulk, so was looking for different ways to use them... this should be nice after so much heavy eating:

Angel Hair Pasta with Artichokes, Olives, Tomatoes, and Capers

•1/2 lb angel hair pasta, cooked per instructions •1-2 tbsp olive oil •2-3 cloves of garlic, minced •1 cup of frozen artichoke hearts, thawed •1 cup of grape tomatoes, diced •1/2 cup black olives, sliced •1 tbsp capers, rinsed •Sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste •2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped •Parmesan cheese, shaved Cook the pasta in water per instructions. Make sure you season the water with sea salt before cooking the pasta. While the pasta is cooking, heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Add the artichoke hearts, tomatoes, olives, and capers. Cook for an additional 1-2 minutes. Add the cooked/drained pasta to the skillet, season well with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, add the basil and some Parmesan cheese then toss to coat evenly. Taste and re-season if needed. Serve immediately. Enjoy.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 31 Dec 14 - 11:12 AM

Artichoke hearts are lovely with pasta or on pizza. It's a little bit harder to get hold of them here in the UK though, I've never seen them frozen anywhere.

Usually I find Lidl the best place for getting them in jars - along with lots of other 'world food' pickles and preserved vegetables. Aldi stock them too, but their isle of preserved veggies tend towards smaller jars rather than the big value ones Lidl stock. Hmm, must make a trip to Lidl and get some goodies in, in the new year..

I find artichokes also go really well with cannellini beans in particular, whether mashed on bread, or in a salad or served with pasta.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,sciencegeek Date: 31 Dec 14 - 11:26 AM

at the buying clubs here I can get Berkley & Jensen brands in large jars. Marinated artichoke hearts is my favorite. The plain hearts are nice for making "artichoke french" - a western NY form of piccata. Sauted in egg wash and served witha nice lemon sauce.

No green salad is truely complete without my marinated vegetables... mushrooms, artichokes, gardenia.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Stilly River Sage Date: 31 Dec 14 - 01:28 PM

This morning I reviewed all of my posts in this thread and skimmed the rest in general as a reminder of what I've shared and asked so far. It's more than two months old and I read so much here at Mudcat that I don't remember everything I wrote on a given topic, though I do know myself well enough to guess what I probably wrote. About my organic garden, itemizing my crops, about my general food choices and eating less meat than I used to. Check.

This is an interesting thread, and (skipping over a few posters who dropped in just to snipe) the subject has moved forward in a productive way. For those who are vegan, a lot of recipes and sources of information have been shared, and for those who are considering vegetarian eating or a moderated diet including just certain types of meat/poultry/fish/dairy products, sources and discussion will aid that decision. Good links, lists of books, and recipes have been shared.

I don't make new year's resolutions because that seems a sure-fire way to set oneself up for failure, but I do foresee continuing the reduction of meat in my diet. I don't eat as much beef for health reasons, but reducing the poultry and other meats (lamb and pork) will be for a mix of cost and ethical reasons - finding organic meat isn't easy and it always costs more. The way big companies raise poultry is an abomination and feed lots for four-legged meat sources are equally awful. I see myself favoring the wild-caught pesectarian approach, with milk and eggs there also.

I thought about some of the recipes I've adopted over the years because they use many types of my garden produce. For example, a recipe from Cyprus that has pork simmering in onions and tomatoes covered in the oven for 90 minutes, then adding browned quartered eggplant on top and baking for another hour. This is eaten with rice or mashed potatoes, but how good would it be to make it without the meat and serve it with falafel balls or lentil patties? Or add lentils to the liquid and let it all cook into a sort of lentil stew. Probably excellent and the tomato, onion, and eggplant come from my garden. Lidia of Italy has a summer simmered sauce that uses all of these things plus fresh basil - no meat in her recipe - that I can (process) in small jars to use year-round. Organic home-grown foods are my eating preference.

I can easily choose to not eat meat several days a week, and often (as stated above) the meat is part of a more complex dish, a casserole or sauce. It could be substituted out. For a health-conscious diet, other things that need to be reduced that also have some ethical issues are white flour products (because of both GMO wheat and the unhealthy carbs of processed white flour), foods with high fructose corn syrup (because despite the protestations of the pundits, not all sugars are equal), adulterated foods from abroad (many American producers now ship raw materials to China to be processed and returned because the labor is so much cheaper, but the oversight is also lax). Local honey instead of the mess that comes from China, and if I didn't have a good source of Middle Eastern olive oil, there are some excellent varieties coming out of California now.

I am allergic to coconut, so any of the things that are used for substitution must be free of the meat or oil. (I also have to avoid it in soaps, shampoo, lotions, etc.) This is why cow's milk is a better option for me than coconut milk, and soy milk isn't something I am interested in any more. Between the GMO beans and the addition of whitening agents, it isn't really healthy. I haven't looked at almond milk, but know it takes a lot of water to grow those California almonds to turn into "milk."

Being a locavore in addition to whatever level of vegetarian as much as possible means knowing the sources of food and aiming at organic origins. These are all part of my concerns as an American eating from the American food supply these days.

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,sciencegeek Date: 31 Dec 14 - 01:55 PM

yesterday I was on the phone with a farmer and the conversation drifted over to the pressures placed on them to "get bigger", just to stay in business, much less competitive. He had started small and wished he could have stayed that way.

A major issue is that you lose direct control over the operation when you must rely on others to take care of things. He cares for his animals and land, whether his own or rented, but if he had it do over he probably wouldn't do it. He's working for the bank, not himself at this point.

Bigger is not better: it's just bigger. But it's the way the "system is rigged these days by short sighted politicians and regulators. The little guy is left to fend for themselves unless they can become "too big to fail"...

I'll give him credit for this - the reason he called was because he needs to renew his permit for creating a wetland on his land as part of the USDA- NRCS wetland reserve program. They ran out money for this fiscal year and have to wait for more funds before his project can go forward.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 31 Dec 14 - 04:23 PM

"I thought about some of the recipes I've adopted over the years because they use many types of my garden produce. For example, a recipe from Cyprus that has pork simmering in onions and tomatoes covered in the oven for 90 minutes, then adding browned quartered eggplant on top and baking for another hour. This is eaten with rice or mashed potatoes, but how good would it be to make it without the meat and serve it with falafel balls or lentil patties? Or add lentils to the liquid and let it all cook into a sort of lentil stew. Probably excellent and the tomato, onion, and eggplant come from my garden. Lidia of Italy has a summer simmered sauce that uses all of these things plus fresh basil - no meat in her recipe - that I can (process) in small jars to use year-round. Organic home-grown foods are my eating preference."

This is a good sound policy to adopt. Working out how to adapt dishes you already make and enjoy so that they can be done either by simply omitting the meat altogether (as you say, in a recipe which has lots of flavoursome ingredients this may work fine) or finding something else to put into the dish to help beef it up a bit. Pulses often work well in this context.

I make a moussaka that omits the meat element and doesn't replace it with 'veggie mince', lentils or anything. Because it's chock full of lovely beefy aubergines, a rich tomato sauce and thick sliced potatoes, there's simply no need to bother switching anything for the meat. Family members have said it's as good as anything they've had on holiday in Greece.

Sometimes with classic traditional dishes, you will find that there's a "poor man's" version already in existence that doesn't contain the meat element. They may include beans or potatoes instead. You may have to search for these traditional dishes outside of mainstream US based recipe sites though as Americanised versions of traditional 'old world' dishes, are often much richer in meat and dairy than their 'peasant' origins (not always the case, but often). "Lenten" dishes for religious fasting days, are another good source for vegetarian alternatives to traditional dishes. You will find plenty of these if you search about a bit.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 01 Jan 15 - 03:26 AM

More bad news for red meat consumption, according to a recent study researchers have identified the molecule which causes a harmful autoimmune response in animals (ie: humans) whose bodies don't possess it.

Red Meat Molecule Identified Increases Cancer Risk

Red meat has been known to increase the risk of heart disease with its high saturated fats, but it's also linked to higher cancer rates, and scientists didn't know why until now.

[..]When researchers took a closer look at red meat, they found the sugar molecule Neu5Gc may be the culprit. It's found in most mammals except for humans, which is why when we ingest it our bodies it disrupts our system. [...]

this newly-discovered sugar molecule caused spontaneous tumors formed five times as faster than mice that didn't consume it. Their immune systems generated antibodies to fight the foreign Neu5Gc molecules, which caused inflammation known to fuel and accelerate tumor formations.

"The final proof in humans will be much harder to come by," Varki said. "But on a more general note, this work may also help explain potential connections of red meat consumption to other diseases exacerbated by chronic inflammation, such as atherosclerosis and type 2 diabetes."


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 01 Jan 15 - 03:36 AM

We've already mentioned vegan athletes like Carl Lewis, but this one's a bit different.

English chap called Tim Leiff AKA 'Livewire' whose a world class exponent of Parkour / Free Running. Worth watching just for the woo factor.

He also promotes a vegan diet on his site:

https://www.youtube.com/user/99timshi/videos


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 01 Jan 15 - 11:45 AM

For those who observe 'hogmanay' they may be interested in vegan haggis. Yes I know haggis is supposed to be made with all kinds of sheep's gooey bits and bobs, but homemade vegan haggis can be surprisingly tasty - at least we think so.

Here's the recipe I use. Lots of good wholesome ingredients like oats, beans and barley are involved as well as all the traditional pepper and spices. It is a bit of a faff, but it makes a BIG batch that you can freeze and reheat for lots of other meals. It's also cheap as chips, if not cheaper.

You can even use it as a basis for veggie shepherds pie, or to stuff vegetables. Or just use it to top a baked spud and have baked beans on the side. We like to pan fry it and serve it with mashed neeps and tatties and lots of steamed greens.

Vegetarian Haggis Recipe Ingredients

150g pearl barley 250g aduki beans, soaked overnight in water 200g spilt yellow peas, soaked overnight in water 250g pinhead oats 100g mixed nuts 4 tbsps olive oil 4 bay leaves 2 onions 2 medium carrots 2 sticks celery 4 cloves garlic 3 sprigs rosemary 250g mushrooms 2 heaped tsps ground allspice 1-2 heaped tsps ground white pepper (to taste, but it needs to be tasteable) 1/2 whole nutmeg, finely grated Sea salt to taste 750ml good quality veg stock 2 lemons, juiced

Method Toast the oats and nuts in a hot oven (180°C) for 25 minutes. Or you can roast the oats and nuts in individual batches, but more quickly, in a dry frying pan (keep stirring so they do not burn). Chop or process the nuts into fine dice (not a powder). Set the oats and nuts to one side.

Cook the pearl barley in boiling water until tender but with some bite left. This is important for the texture of the finished dish. You can pressure cook it for 20 mins or cook according to packet instructions for about an hour. Test frequently so that you do not over cook the barley. Drain and put to one side.

While this is cooking cook the well soaked pulses together in a saucepan. Don't try to cook these unless they've been properly soaked overnight. Cook in just enough water to cover and top up as necessary. Don't add any salt or acid or you will toughen them. Drain and put to one side.

Finely chop (or food process to fine dice) the vegetables and rosemary. Heat the olive oil in a wide based pan to a medium heat and add the bay leaves. Stir for a minute or so. Then add the vegetables (not the mushrooms) and the chopped rosemary. Sauté over a medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Then cover and turn down to low and sauté for 15 minutes. You want the vegetables to sweat but not to colour.

Add the mushrooms and stir well. Re-cover the pan and cook for 5 minutes or so.

Add the spices to the vegetables and cook, stirring for 2-3 minutes. Add the pearl barley and pulses and stir well to incorporate. Taste and season with salt if required. Add enough vegetable stock to create a slightly sloppy consistency. Cover and simmer for 10-15 minutes for the flavours to amalgamate.

Add the oats and nuts to the mix and stir well. Add more stock which will get absorbed by the oats. Simmer the mix for 30 minutes over a very low heat, stirring frequently so it doesn't stick to the bottom of the pan. You may need to add a little more stock or water depending on how good a seal your pan lid makes.

You should end up with a fairly dense but not solid mix at the end of this time. Check the seasoning and add what you need along with the lemon juice.

http://www.carllegge.com/2012/01/vegetarian-haggis-recipe/


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Steve Shaw Date: 01 Jan 15 - 12:09 PM

Your link to the mice study is to a popular science publication. It is full of flabby statements and weasel words. Of course, the original science so badly described by the article may be good science for all I know (I'll look it up as long as it doesn't cost me anything), but I can tell you straight away that there's no spectacular breakthrough afoot..


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 01 Jan 15 - 12:12 PM

What publications would you recommend as worthwhile online sources for current research?


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Steve Shaw Date: 01 Jan 15 - 12:40 PM

You need to go to the peer-reviewed source. Simple as that. I looked at the abstract in PNAS (I don't think I can access the whole thing unless I subscribe). What I glean from it is that the mice were considerably mucked about with in order to be experimented on. I also know that it is extraordinarily tricky to extrapolate results obtained on mice being kept in artificial, experimental conditions to human beings. What's more, there was a conflict of interest involving two of the workers. What I would be wanting to know from the full study is the size of samples, the duration of the experiments, the nature of control experiments and the full data subjected to statistical scrutiny. You should never take popular science journalism as gospel, no matter how enticing it seems and how much it confirms prejudices. I'm not saying it can never be good. I'm also not saying that the science in this study is bad. The scientist in me is naturally sceptical whenever dramatic breakthroughs are claimed. Somehow, they always seem to fizzle out.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 01 Jan 15 - 12:46 PM

How about this. I'll continue to post current stuff from the popular press relevant to the topic of this thread, and you can continue to debunk it? ;-P


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Stilly River Sage Date: 01 Jan 15 - 12:46 PM

If you do find a for fee publication post the full citation here and I'll see if I can reach it through my university databases. I agree - it takes some filtering to get past some of the full articles that actually hinge on a single small statement but have a lot of padding added. One of the more frustrating aspects of the Internet - anyone can post anything and name their site anything. You'll save time if you start your search in Google Scholar.

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Steve Shaw Date: 01 Jan 15 - 12:58 PM

I was being constructive. I have a science background and I know weasel words when I see 'em!


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Stilly River Sage Date: 01 Jan 15 - 03:59 PM

I never said you weren't being constructive - I offered to look for your citations to save you money because the university already pays for the access.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Steve Shaw Date: 01 Jan 15 - 04:42 PM

I didn't mean you, Maggie. 'Twas CS I was coming back to.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Stilly River Sage Date: 01 Jan 15 - 05:40 PM

Some of those bogus sites look awfully authentic - it takes debunking the "weasel words" and logical fallacies to find the useful information.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Steve Shaw Date: 01 Jan 15 - 06:18 PM

The beauty of peer-reviewed science is that you know that it has been subjected to keen scrutiny by people who are just as qualified as the authors. The trouble with popular science journalism is that its quality not only depends on the scholarship of the author but also on the editorial standards of the publication, and there is no peer reviewing. There is also the potential for conflict of interests apropos of advertisers. Don't get me wrong: some of it is very good, adhering to standards of high integrity. But you do need the critical skills to see the wheat from the chaff. Weasel words are always a red alert. "Experts have discovered..." "Scientists are now saying that..." "the dramatic discovery that..." And always look out for the deliberate, attention-grabbing headline. You get none of any of that in real science. It's worth looking up the term weasel words on Wiki.

Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Stilly River Sage Date: 01 Jan 15 - 10:01 PM

You're right. My academic background is an MA in English MA and Environmental Ethics (philosophy). There is pleasure in tracking down good citations, in looking at someone's use of material and going to the original source to learn more. This kind of scholarship can lead to accusations of pedantry when you're looking at popular culture publications. Sticking with good journals and newspapers is one way to generally avoid the nonsense, but there are plenty of people willing to totally buy junk science. Keep pushing back, describe lucidly why the junk is junk and make the truth understandable, and be nice to people who made the error.

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 02 Jan 15 - 10:03 AM

I find, because my imagination and organisational skills need a little help, that I work best with a rough idea of what I'm going to cook each day. So my menu planning this year is going to look something like this. I find it helps, especially if you've got to plan ahead, as you often do to cook veggie stuff. When cooking meat I find you often don't have to think much about it, but eating mostly vegetarian does take a bit of forethought, hence I do recommend using the internet or cookery books and having a rough menu plan within which you can allocate dishes for the weeks and months ahead:

Fridays are usually slated as 'curry night' any kind of rich spicy dish anywhere can fit in here, in fact I'd like to do a bit more in the way of hot African stews with rice.

Saturdays are 'burger and chips' veggie style with homemade bean burgers and home baked oven chips, plus a nice green salad.

Sundays are 'potatoes and gravy' day, with anything from a nut roast to pies as the main with lots of greens and carrots.

Mondays it's anything I haven't tried cooking before. Could be Korean noodles or Greek pie. Or indeed anything that doesn't fit into my other days.

Tuesdays we often have a thick beany dish, like the hopping john, chilli or boston baked beans. Often served simply with baked potato and slaw. I like these kinds of dishes as they're easy to cook in bulk and freeze ahead.

Wednesdays is stew, casserole or cobbler - something 'British' feeling.

Thursdays is pasta. Spaghetti, lasagne, fusilli, whatever.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 02 Jan 15 - 10:19 AM

Further to the freezer and prepping ahead. Bean burgers are also great for this. I do a big batch of bean burgers and open freeze on trays then pack them into bags to story. Any type of classic combination can be used.

- If for example you love hummus or falafal, think about a chickpea and cumin burger covered in sesame seeds; serve in buns with a nice greek salad on the side and some herby home made chips. - Or maybe a black bean and sweetcorn burger served on buns with a spicy salsa. Chips tossed with chilli powder. - Curried lentil patties, beefed up with some rice in there too. Put in buns with raita and some of that Indian curry house onion and cucumber salad. Colour your chips golden with some turmeric. - Minted pea patties, made with dried whole peas or green split peas and lots of mint and parsley. - Or Christmas burgers made with dried chestnuts, parsnip and sage.

You can do anything you fancy. But the mixture will need plenty of seasoning as well as a good amount of filler in the form of breadcrumbs and / or oatmeal in order to hold it's shape.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,gillymor Date: 02 Jan 15 - 11:27 AM

Thanks all, for the suggestions for black eyed peas. I added smoked paprika and minced baby bellas, a bit of worstershire sauce, an extra vegetable bullion cube (in about 2# of peas and lots of veggies) and got something close to what I was looking for. I'm going to use some of the other suggested ingredients in the future. I also added three fresh caught Spanish Mackerel (I guess I'm a pescetarian), not to the peas but to the grill, to the feast which also went over big. All that and lots of Cava, Vinho Verde, music and a resounding victory by Oregon in the Rose Bowl made it a memorable day.

CS, curried lentils with brown rice are a staple of mine, how can I bind them up into patties? Thanks.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,Ed Date: 02 Jan 15 - 11:38 AM

Your 'Christmas burgers' sound delicious, CS.

What sort of beans do you use? Haricot?


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Stilly River Sage Date: 02 Jan 15 - 12:22 PM

I love black beans, and make a general mix that I use during the week for tacos, burritos, etc that is half beans, half hamburger (I grind my own roasts, I never buy ground meat any more). I could probably just as easily make that without the beef and have the seasoned beans for the same use.

I don't have nights when different things are cooked, I cook on the weekend then use leftovers during the week. But I fix things that are adaptable to different uses, like the beef/bean mix described. I love beans over rice, and beans can easily be made without a meat ingredient (though we get back to the hamhock question again - putting the smoke in the dish - smoked paprika in beans would be excellent). Pinto beans are popular here in the south but I prefer red kidney beans, or the aforesaid black beans.

I use small jars (kept from salsa, peanut butter, salad dressing ,etc.) to freeze about 10 - 12 ounces of beans in each, then when I make lunch to take to work I use rice from the fridge, take a jar of beans from the freezer, and add whatever fruit or other item to the padded lunch bag. By lunch I usually still have to microwave the beans to thaw them. Include a small container of green tomato relish to spoon on top of the plate and it is perfect.

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 02 Jan 15 - 12:31 PM

Gillymor: "CS, curried lentils with brown rice are a staple of mine, how can I bind them up into patties? Thanks."

Hi Gillymor!

I tend to make my burgers by 'having a go' rather than following recipes. Lentils can be horribly sloppy though, so I'd cook them so that they're 'just' done, or in other words, 'not quite' done. Then drain them thoroughly and let cool, before mixing into other ingredients.

I would probably include an egg in the mix. As well as plenty of cooked and drained short-grain rice (nice and starchy) and some oatmeal or breadcrumbs to thicken to a good 'playdough' type of consistency.

Shove loads of curry powder in there. And plenty of other seasoning like herbs, salt and pepper. Lentil dough isn't too exciting in its natural state!

Typically I chill the mixture well before trying to shape into patties. I find this helps make the mix a bit more friendly.

You can either then just douse in flour before frying, or do the whole flour, egg and breadcrumb routine. I do both.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 02 Jan 15 - 12:42 PM


From: GUEST,Ed Date: 02 Jan 15 - 11:38 AM

"Your 'Christmas burgers' sound delicious, CS.

What sort of beans do you use? Haricot?"

Ed, I'd just use whatever you have. If you have a tin of butter beans, or red kidney, use them. Chickpeas would be just as good.

I'd roughly chop the 'key' ingredients like roasted parsnips (if not roasted then grate them instead) and cooked chestnuts. Try to ensure there's not too much moisture in there by draining or mopping with kitchen towel. You could add in dried cranberries too. Set aside.

Add a good mixture of oats and breadcrumbs - as well as lots of herbs and seasoning - to your mashed bean mix to turn to a 'playdough' consistency. An egg can help to bind it all. Or some flax seeds if vegan.

THen gently squidge in your 'set aside' ingredients.

Shape flour and fry. Or shape, flour, egg, breadcrumb and fry.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,gillymor Date: 02 Jan 15 - 12:45 PM

Thanks for the ideas, CS and Happy New Year.

Black Bean-Sweet Potato Burritos. Two of my favorite foods in one great dish.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Stilly River Sage Date: 02 Jan 15 - 12:52 PM

There are two approaches to cooking dried beans. If you're making hummus, soak then cook the beans then pop off the pulses (for a creamy texture) then add ingredients and puree. But if you're making falafel, soak the peas, pop off the pulses, DON'T COOK them before grinding and making your dough, then they cook when they are in the hot oil. I imagine you could make a similar approach with lentils if you want to make a patty that you are going to fry.

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 02 Jan 15 - 01:16 PM

Here's a Veggie Burger 'Formula" from the Meat Free Athlete site. It may help with working out a mix that appeals to you, without relying on a fixed recipe as such:

Veggie Burger Formulae

Though I'd reinforce the importance of i) seasoning, ii) using wholegrain starchy fillers to achieve a 'playdough' like consistency, iii) draining / blotting everything well, iv) chilling thoroughly before shaping and frying, and v) seasoning!


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,gillymor Date: 02 Jan 15 - 01:50 PM

Those formulas look interesting. Lots of room for personalization.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters + diabetic challenges From: freda underhill Date: 02 Jan 15 - 09:37 PM

Very interesting thread. There are lots of recommendations on this thread, and many yummy recipes.

I've been vegetarian since 1973, but like you Chanteyranger I went onto a no-carbs, plant based diet 4 months ago. I too have diabetes type 2 and since adopting this eating style my blood sugar levels have halved and are now normal. I follow Dr Joel Fuhrman's nutritarian diet which can be summarised as concentrating on greens and beans - with some fruit, large serves of seeds and some nuts daily, and no carbs (grain based products).

This has been a tough change but I have averted going on insulin and have reversed some of the symptoms of diabetes, though I haven't yet eliminated it.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: freda underhill Date: 02 Jan 15 - 09:38 PM

ps grains have been substituted with legumes..

freda


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 03 Jan 15 - 03:48 AM

This weekend I'm doing a bit of batch cooking.

Today I'm making Boston Baked Beans (linked to somewhere below) - I put whole 500g bag of haricot (navy) beans in a large pan to soak overnight. I'll boil these this morning and then I'll bung them with everything else into the slow cooker for a couple of hours.

I'm also making up the vegan Haggis mixture I linked to below - some adzuki beans and split peas were put in an even bigger pan of water to soak overnight. I'll boil up a bit of barley with these. Then I'll use the processor to blitz some nuts and toast those with some oats till nicely brown. Onions, carrot, celery and mushies will also be blitzed in the processor and then sauteed. All the mixture will be mixed together with lots of herbs and spices. Makes loads and will last us several weeks cooked from the freezer.

Both these dishes will be portioned up and frozen for future meals (I save up stuff like icecream tubs for doing this)

Tonight I'll soak some black beans to make a huge pan of veggie chilli - lots of onion, peppers and sweetcorn will go into that as well as cumin, chocolate and chilli for lots of flavour.

These are all big batch dishes I've made before so I know what I'm doing, which helps to speed things along a bit when dealing with larger quantities. But today I'll also look for something else to cook that I've not tried doing before so I can expand the range of recipes I know. I might for example have a think about doing something like a veggie cassoulet with cannellini beans and tomatoes. I might portion this us into little enamel tins. for reheating in future weeks.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,Ed Date: 03 Jan 15 - 06:22 AM

CS,

I've really enjoyed reading your recipies on this thread.

I very much doubt if I'll ever become vegetarian, let alone vegan (cheese, butter and eggs are amongst my very favourite things). However, I should eat more healthily and you have given me some inspiration.

Thank you.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 03 Jan 15 - 07:47 AM

You're welcome Ed, I'll no doubt keep updating and use this thread as a future reference for things I want to try.

To be honest it's probably just as easy to eat a 'bad' vegetarian diet as it is a bad meat based diet. Three are plenty of vegetarians who don't do things right. Subsisting on pot noodles and crisps for example and not making sure they're getting decent nutrition.

The key really - for meat eater and veggie alike - is to try to incorporate more of the good fresh natural wholefood stuff into your diet and try to minimise processed foods full of unnecessary additives.

The classic vegetarian staples such as pulses, vegetables, whole-grains, nuts and seeds all have lots of good things going for them. Fibre, minerals, antioxidants and so-on. The papers love to call these things 'superfoods' when in fact their really just plain old 'ordinary foods' that haven't been stripped of their goodness and turned into something unrecognisable.

Apart from the health benefits such simple foodstuffs provide, they're also - typically - very cheap. So even if you find you''ve tried a batch of say Cajun black-eye beans and you decide you don't like it, you've probably only spent a couple of quid altogether.

The only real downside to this kind of cooking, is time. It does take a bit of time to faff around with wholefoods. But once I know what I like and how to do something. I balance that out by doing batch cooking for the freezer. Like today. In fact my haggis is on the stove now. Off to finish it off..


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Steve Shaw Date: 03 Jan 15 - 11:21 AM

You are not on a no-carb diet just because you restrict yourself to nuts, fruit and greens. Plants are rich in starch and/or sugars (think juicy fruit) as well as the oils in some seeds. Starch and sugars are carbohydrates.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 04 Jan 15 - 04:38 AM

Vegetarian diets are associated to a number of spiritual and religious disciplines. An interesting form of vegetarian cuisine that I haven't really explored before is 'Ital' (from the word 'Vital') Rastafarian cooking. Ital focuses on natural whole foods, and shuns processed foods. Lots of herbs and peppers are used, but typically no salt or sugar. SEe more here:

http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2013issue1/2013_issue1_jamaican_ital_cuisine.php

"Jamaican cuisine has been influenced by its slavery era and a variety of cultures including China, India, Africa, Europe, and the Middle East. Its food includes everything from boiled green banana to mango chutney. Most Jamaican food includes meat of some kind, but ital food is an exception. Ital cuisine involves a natural way of cooking, developed by Rastafarians. Typical ital food does not include red meat and is prepared to enhance a healthy lifestyle. Since the 1940s, Rastafarians have disapproved of processed food. Herbs and hot peppers like Scotch bonnet are a frequent substitute for salt. Sugar is usually avoided, and only a little dark raw sugar sweetens some food on occasion. Though vegan food wasn't popular in 1970s mainstream Jamaica, it wasn't unusual for Rastafarians to make their own tofu, veggie mince, and soymilk from scratch. Now, a whole generation has lived to see ital become a more accepted part of Jamaican cuisine. Generally, ital ingredients are directly from the Earth, and local markets are a popular place to find fresh vegetables. It's common for some Rastas to blend their own herbs and spices to create flavor specific to their taste. Traditional ital food includes beans, peas, callaloo, and coconut, which are part of traditional Jamaican cuisine as well. Ital is thought to be a take on the word vital, and means natural, organic, fresh, and pure. For Rastas, the choice to eat ital is a spiritual decision that can be for health reasons, or as a way to respect the lives of fellow animals. Despite the general guidelines, there aren't rigid rules about what to eat or how to make ital food. In fact, there is a tendency to experiment with food. If an ingredient isn't available, then some Rastas will try something else. Food can be influenced by other cultures. For example, Ghanaian peanut stew can get the Jamaican treatment with scallions, thyme, coconut milk, and callaloo added."


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 04 Jan 15 - 04:43 AM

Here's a song about Ital from vegan Rasta Macka B:

Wha Me Eat - Macka B

This is what Macka eats..

[Intro] Selamta (Greetings in Amharic) Ital (natural) we Ital and Vegan we Vegan I and I (we) eat from the earth and leave the animals to give birth No deaders (dead flesh) No fur No feathers When I tell people I don't eat meat, fish or dairy They look at me strangely They don't realise I eat a very wide variety Listen to Macka.B Yo!

[Hook x2] Wha me eat them a wonder wha me eat When me tell them say me nu (don't) eat no fish nor no meat no Wha me eat them a wonder wha me nyam (eat) When me tell them say that I'm a vegan

[Verse 1] Well me nu eat no meat no fish no cheese nor no egg Nothing with no foot no eye no wing nor no head Nothing with no lip no ears no toe nor no leg Prefer fruit and vegetables instead Me careful and me choosy about what I'm eating My medicines my food my food is my medicine When I tell people that me nu eat dem deh (those) things The look at me and scratch their chin And start wondering

[Hook 2] Wha me eat them a wonder wha me eat When me tell them say me nu eat no fish nor no meat no Wha me eat them a wonder wha me nyam When me tell them say that I'm a vegan Wha me eat them a wonder wha me eat When me tell them say me nu eat no fish nor no meat no Wha me eat them a wonder wha me eat Dou you want to hear wha me eat?

[Verse 2] I eat Callaloo, Ackee, Sweet Potato Yam, Banana and Tomato Cabbage, Spinach, Avocado Cho Cho, Butter Beans and Coco Courgettes, Millet, Plantain Rice and Peas and Pumpkin Mango, Dates and Guava Chick peas and Cassava Brussel sprouts and Caulifower Onion, Fennel and Cucumber Plum, Pear and Papaya Aubergine and Soya Lime , Lentils and Quinoa Wholemeal Bread and Wholemeal Flour Watercress and Okra Tofu and Sweet Pepper Cous Cous and Carrots Broccoli and Coconut Peaches, Apples, Apricot Breadfruit, Jackfruit, Sour sop Pistachios, Cashews and Almonds Walnuts, Peanuts also Pecan Sesame Seeds, Sunflower..., Lemon Orange, Pineapple and Melon Bulghar Wheat and Garlic, Kiwi, Corn and Turnip Pap Choy and Pomegranite, Hijiki and Rocket Berries, Cherries and Strawberries Beetroot, Grapefruit and Celeries You see the meat's not necessary We tell them say

[Hook x2]

[Verse 3] Look how me big and me say look how me strong Some people can't believe that me a vegetarian If you want a healthy body check the real Rastaman Cause Rastaman will tell you about the right nutrition Me get my Calcium ,my Sodium me get Potassium Me get my Zinc,me get my Iron and my Magnesium Instead of nyam(eat) the fish I nyam what the fish nyam Like the Kelp and Irish Moss that grow in the ocean Me get me Proteins and my Minerals, me get me Calories The Vitamins A the B the C the D the E,the F the G Essential fatty acids like the Omega 3 Me get me fibre and me Carbohydrates in my body Don't forget your Water drink a few glasses a day The toxins in your body just flush them away Some of the things you eat stop in your body and decay When it comes to food I don't play We tell them say

[Hook x2]

[Verse 4] A lot of people would stop eat the meat If they had to kill the animals before they could eat Look at the way the animals them get treat The unsanitary conditions where some of them keep If we were supposed to eat the meat we would have sharp teeth You wouldn't need a Knife and fork can you see it You can't eat it raw you have to cook it complete And put on Vegetable seasoning to make it taste sweet

[Hook x2]

[Verse 5] It's up to you you can eat what you want to You can be a vegetarian and be healthy too There's a lot of choice around many foods are on view I just remember some more I forgot to tell you The Nectarines and tangerines and clementines and guanabana Lychhe, oats and ginger, kale and spirulina Mung beans, wholemeal pasta etc


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Steve Shaw Date: 04 Jan 15 - 04:49 AM

I note that his diet is jam-packed with carbohydrates. Just thought I'd mention it.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 04 Jan 15 - 06:33 AM

Going grain free on a vegan diet would be challenging but achievable, going carb free / extremely low carb on the other hand, would be very difficult if not virtually impossible.

Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 04 Jan 15 - 10:09 AM

One of his favourite easy store-cupboard suppers tonight.

Winter Minestrone made with red onions, garlic, rosemary and bay (from the garden), celery, carrots, frozen whole leaf spinach, frozen green beans, cannellini beans (I cook these up in batches then freeze them in individual tubs), macaroni, and tinned tomatoes.

This is a good end of the week meal, as you can chuck basically whatever bits of veg you have left in the fridge into it. It's nicer with fresh greens, especially good dark kale, but I find frozen spinach to be quite adequate. It also makes a good home for any pesto lingering in the bottom of that jar in the fridge...

Pity we don't have any decent bread in though. Maybe I'll bake a couple of the pitta breads I've got stashed in the freezer and stick a bit of garlic 'butter' in them.

Winter Minestrone - take your pick


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Stilly River Sage Date: 04 Jan 15 - 10:53 AM

Moderation in everything. That's the approach to keep in mind.

I concur with Ed, I probably wouldn't make it completely to vegetarian, let alone vegan, but I will eat less meat and I will work on broadening my diet, especially as far as the beans.

There are lots of types of beans in the world (some very interesting new world beans I've come across in the writings of Gary Paul Nabhan, an ethnobotanist out at the University of Arizona). The tepary bean in particular is quite delicious. He discusses how American Indians from some of the Southwestern deserts (Sonoran desert - Tohono O'odham - used to be called Papago, and Akimel O'odham - used to be Pima) had such a specialized survival diet that the introduction of processed foods with easily accessed carbohydrates catapulted huge numbers of the indigenous populations into diabetes. This is an extreme example of the harm of modern carbohydrates can do, but taken by degrees there is a lot to be learned about how we process carbs. They aren't all bad, but we get way too many of them and they hit our metabolisms hard.

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Steve Shaw Date: 04 Jan 15 - 11:48 AM

The problem is not "carbohydrates". The problem is sugar. Of course, starchy carbohydrate can be soaked in fat, as with burger buns, crisps, doughnuts and biscuits, but don't blame the starch for that. As I said beforehand, the blanket vilification of "carbs" is based on ignorance. Bread, potatoes, porridge, rice and pasta are all delicious, if properly prepared, and very good for us. I read somewhere last week that pasta cooked al dente is much better for us than overcooked pasta because it is far more of a slow-release food. There's only about a minute in it.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,gillymor Date: 04 Jan 15 - 12:06 PM

I've got Gypsy Soup simmering on the stove right now. One of my favorites, I follow the recipe pretty close but have added fresh ginger, carrots,red and green sweet peppers and put in a little more garlic than called for and left out the squash. I've got some store bought naan to go with it. From the original Moosewood cookbook.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Steve Shaw Date: 04 Jan 15 - 12:11 PM

Putting in a little more garlic than is called for is always called for.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Stilly River Sage Date: 04 Jan 15 - 12:12 PM

It is the efficiency of the body metabolism, adjusted to a life of scarcity, that converts bread and other flour products into sugar that has stymied the desert tribal people. Not just sugar. Many cultures have different food requirements based upon the adaptations of their metabolisms.

Food, Genes, and Culture: Eating Right for Your Origins by Gary Paul Nabhan.

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,gillymor Date: 04 Jan 15 - 12:33 PM

Amen to that, Steve.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 04 Jan 15 - 01:37 PM

I've yet to find anything either experientially/subjectively or anecdotally from others, or indeed anything contained in studies covered in the health press (albeit I'm not very sciency minded) to convince me that there's anything whatsoever wrong with eating whole-grains or other naturally carb-dense foods like spuds, fruit or pulses.

I have had subjectively experienced issues with 'the white stuff', which I think is a little bit, if not actually quite a lot, evil. But the main issue here, as with so much modern so-called 'food', is processing things that would be otherwise relatively harmless in their original state, into intensely refined and concentrated crapola.

Even though 'natural' is obviously something of a problematic word - and not in any small part due to the way in which it's been co-opted as a lying marketing tool - it still broadly speaking describes my personal idea of what constitutes a wholesome and healthy diet.

The day I hear that people who eat a diet of primarily whole-grains, fruit and vegetables are dying in their masses of diabetes, heart disease and strokes, then maybe I'll have another think. Meanwhile I won't hold my breath.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 04 Jan 15 - 01:53 PM

That Moosewood 'Gypsy Soup' looks great Gillymor, got a nice warming Hungarian vibe to it; great for this grey time of year. I'll deffo try that one.

Meanwhile, I'm trying to wean myself off of the garlic a bit as I routinely put a whole bulb into what I'm cooking - especially pasta sauce or curry. And though no-one's ever actually told me so, I can't help but suspect I must totally reek of the stuff... :-/

He's on his second bowl of Minestrone now. After which it's back to Peter Jackson's 'The Desolation of Smaug' (or indeed Peter Jackson's 'Demolition of Tolkien', depending on your perspective..)


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,HiLo Date: 04 Jan 15 - 03:21 PM

What great thread. Very informative. Although I am not vegan or vegetarian , I like lamb and stilton too much, there are sone grand recipes here! I will be havIng a go at few. Thanks to all.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,sciencegeek Date: 05 Jan 15 - 08:40 AM

a fun book to read is The Bean Bible...

and for those with wheat/gluten issues... try rice sticks or bean threads... inexpensive forms of pasta that are quick & easy to make and are found in most non Asian grociery stores these days.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,gillymor Date: 05 Jan 15 - 10:23 AM

CS:"Meanwhile, I'm trying to wean myself off of the garlic a bit as I routinely put a whole bulb into what I'm cooking - especially pasta sauce or curry. And though no-one's ever actually told me so, I can't help but suspect I must totally reek of the stuff... :-/"

At least you've got good vampire insurance. :)

If a dish calls for 2 cloves garlic I generally use 5-6, depending on the dish and strength of the garlic, and go from there.

SG, I'll have to track down The Bean Bible. I don't have problems with wheat but in pasta dishes I use brown rice fusilli or a brown rice quinoa blend or b.r. spaghetti from Trader Joe's about as much as I use wheat pasta. It's cheap and quite edible.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 05 Jan 15 - 10:55 AM

Beans are great, I use them lots. If anything I should expand my range of grain based dishes. I tend to go for brown rice or couscous all the time out of sheer lazy habit, but I've got some red quinoa in the cupboard that I should really get out and play with. As well as a packet of millet, and some roasted buckwheat (aka Kasha) too.

Nuts and seeds too I should use more of as they're full of good oils and minerals. I find sunflower seeds are particularly useful as they're exceedingly inexpensive and can be used to sub for pretty much any other nut. I use them in burgers, roasts, salads and (Steve may not like this idea) pesto. Especially nice just toasted a bit in the oven.

As for beans, I most often use haricot, cannellini, mung beans, black-eye, red kidney, butter beans and chickpeas. But flageolet can be lovely (not so easy to come by, but you can get them dried from Ocado). Adzuki, borlotti, black beans and pinto are also good in a variety of contexts.

My preference is for dried pulses over the canned variety, partly because I don't like to see unnecessary waste in the form of packaging (one 500g bag of dried beans works out about the same as four tin cans worth), partly because it saves space in my cupboards, and partly because it works out somewhat thriftier even after factoring in cooking costs. Plus it's simply the way I taught myself to cook back in the day; you had to cook vegetarian whole-foods from scratch twenty odd years ago, because there wasn't so much of it readily available off of the shelf. Times have definitely changed in that regard. I find Tesco and Ocado, even ASDA surprisingly good for finding veggie whole-food staples these days.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,sciencegeek Date: 05 Jan 15 - 11:31 AM

LOL.. "back in the day"... a great reminder of how much change has occurred in the past century...

my grandmom had an icebox and my mom had her chest freezer and pantry that was stocked up to get us through the winter when construction work was slow or dead - just enough income to pay down bills... though canned beans, vegetables & tomatoes were a staple. If you watched the sales you could stock up and save $. Mom had a "brown thumb", so not much fresh garden produce... lol.

But there were no TV dinners or mixes or microwaves or even much in the way of fast food... that came later. And there were plenty of neighbors who either remembered the tough times of the Depression or even war torn Europe and the hunger then. Food on the table was cause for satisfaction if not celebration.

I've heard a fair amount of complaints about the food in our diets - and not without justification - but not much about being glad that we DO have food and choices... or what is available for those who are not so lucky.

For those of you in the USA, please contribute to the Martin Luther King food drives, especially in these winter months. And whatever serves that need in the rest of the world...


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 05 Jan 15 - 12:38 PM

Speaking of grains, new Harvard study suggest that eating whole grains such as whole oats, brown rice and whole wheat (ie: unrefined grains with the fibre left in place) are good for cardiovascular health.

https://uk.news.yahoo.com/whole-grains-cut-death-rates-164604938.html#Axzkdit


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Stilly River Sage Date: 05 Jan 15 - 01:39 PM

The idea of eating whole grains is that the roughage and (often described as "nutty") flavor were removed when hulls or whatever were separated. It is also more labor intensive, but so far I don't see who grains costly less - to the contrary!

Beans and rice for lunch today, a favorite meal with the benefits of complex carbohydrates when these foods are eaten together.

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: Stilly River Sage Date: 05 Jan 15 - 03:23 PM

A coworker told me today that she is happy to have received Thug Kitchen: Eat Like You Give a F as a gift. The book and the related web site encourage people to eat more vegetables.

Thug Kitchen started their wildly popular web site to inspire people to eat some Goddamn vegetables and adopt a healthier lifestyle. Beloved by Gwyneth Paltrow ("This might be my favorite thing ever") and named Saveur's Best New Food blog of 2013—with half a million Facebook fans and counting—Thug Kitchen wants to show everyone how to take charge of their plates and cook up some real f*cking food.

SRS


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 06 Jan 15 - 04:28 AM

Like a lot of people, I followed the Thug Kitchen blog before the book came out and until the book was published the authors where unknown to me or anyone else.

Since the book's publication however there's been a bit of controversy over the mimicking of Black American 'ghetto' dialect by two educated white hipsters for comedy effect. And for critics, a key part of the comedy is the implicit counterpointing of the often fat and sugar laden. heavily processed and meat heavy fast food diets typically associated to poor minority cultures, with a diet that's more typically associated to the white affluent educated classes. I'm not making that argument by the way, I'm just responding to the thread.

It's definitely a book that has successfully popularised a whole-food plant based diet. It's sold really really well, pushing well known chefs off of the top spot. The photos are really vibrant and the dishes really clean, simple and fresh. I probably couldn't afford to cook like that though.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 06 Jan 15 - 04:40 AM

Not every day, anyway. Thug Kitchen focuses on a wide variety of fresh produce, which actually works out quite expensive when compared to whole-food storecupboard staples. I keep costs down by mainly sticking with quite a basic selection of fresh produce like roots, simple salad ingredients, brassicas and alliums.


Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters From: GUEST,CS Date: 07 Jan 15 - 03:27 AM

I had another look at the Thug Kitchen recipes and they're actually not so GooP after all (for anyone who doesn't know, GooP is Gwyneth Paltrow's lifestyle blog - don't go there unless you have access to super exotic ingredients for 'cookies'.

Otherwise there a


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 21 Feb 15 - 09:36 AM

I made homemade granola (US) / oat crunchy cereal (UK) today. I have a large bag of muesli and lots of sunflower seeds so this was a good way to put them to use.

3 US cups muesli (or plain porridge oats)
1 US cup sunflower seeds (or almonds)
6 Tbsp sunflower oil (or other neutral tasting oil)
6 Tbsp runny honey (or maple syrup)
1 heaped tsp ground cinnamon (or preferred pudding spice)

Add the honey and oil to a large heavy bottomed pan and heat gently.
Stir in all the other ingredients and coat them thoroughly in the syrup.
Spread the mix out over a greased baking tray.
Bake at about 170C for ten minutes. Remove tray and stir, turning the browned bits over.
Return for another ten minutes. Turn again. Return to oven for a final five to ten minutes.
Take out of oven and stir about, then leave to cool.
Crumble gently into smallish clusters and store in an airtight jar.

For those who are interested, honey isn't a vegan ingredient because it comes from teeny tiny animals. Not all vegans take their efforts to avoid animal products down to the insect level though, so vegans who eat honey are named 'Beegans'. Quite cute!

I eat my crunchy cereal with soya milk usually as it has more protein and is cheap as chips. But if your shop stocks it, oat milk makes the perfect plant milk to eat with cereal in my opinion. Oat milk is creamy and slightly sweet, though naturally so, and of course slightly oaty. If you can get Oatly oat milk, do try the chocolate one. It's really good and probably gorgeous on granola too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST
Date: 21 Feb 15 - 04:00 AM

Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 24 Dec 14 - 10:05 AM

sigh... Once again we seem to be missing the forest for the trees.

Just as we turned the phrase "the LOVE of money is the root of all evil" into "MONEY is the root of all evil", we are turning a blind eye to one very real fact... there are too many F*ing human beings in the world to be supported in the fashion of "first world" members.

The earth is a finite system... what you see is what we've got and there ain't no more. Now figure out a way to curb our over population first... because our population doubling rate is going to screw us all in the end... carnivour, omnivour and herbivour.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 24 Dec 14 - 10:25 AM

"Now figure out a way to curb our over population first... because our population doubling rate is going to screw us all in the end... carnivour, omnivour and herbivour."

Well that's one way of seeing it. But I wonder why you think we need to introduce measures to curb our FUTURE population, BEFORE we think about ways to encourage our EXISTENT (and future) POPULATION to adapt some of their habits? Surely both things can be addressed at the same time? I don't think it has to be an either/or approach.

As for the problem of future population, I've already done my bit by not having children myself. But that's a biggy for most people, and probably a substantially bigger 'sell' than encouraging folk to either give up their cars or quit eating meat (the two other significant positive environmental impacts that people can choose to make).

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,Steve Shaw
Date: 24 Dec 14 - 11:08 AM

I've done my bit by having exactly 2.4 children.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 24 Dec 14 - 11:10 AM

"a substantially bigger 'sell' than encouraging folk to either give up their cars or quit eating meat (the two other significant positive environmental impacts that people can choose to make)."

a choice that has all the usefulness of rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. I work for a state environmental agency and still see the shortsightedness of policies that are politically veted to upset the least number of people, but are bandaids and not solutions.

we take prime agricultural land out of production, put in housing for people who want the same benefits of city life ... that infrastructure does more environmental damage than any CAFO (concentrated animal feeding operation in EPA parlance)... but it's culturally acceptable.

there is nothing new about humans exploiting their environment... it's just that the scale is getting larger and larger...

there are already too many countries that regard their populations has little better than human livestock to be used as they will; the more people there are, the cheaper seems to be their individual "value". We need to learn from history and take hard looks at what is going on and why.

I'm sorry, but I have little patience for simplistic "answers" to complex issues that will ultimately fail because they do not address fundamental problems. There is nothing fundamentally wrong with "eating meat"... there are many problems created by the bigger is better mentality of western culture, but that extends to all facets of agriculture.

A cursury study of ecological principles will identify carrying capacity of the environment as a make or break issue. More than one civilization has vanished due to inability of the environment to support them, we are not immune and our population far exceeds any that has existed in the past.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 27 Dec 14 - 05:31 AM

Oh yum! Just watching Rick Stein on Beeb while browsing on my puter. This recipe from Palermo looks so good. Spaghetti in a fresh tomato sauce with mint and capers - found it on Youtube:

Veggie spaghetti recipe with chilli flakes, capers and mint

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 27 Dec 14 - 05:49 AM

Meant to also mention that Mr bought me Madhur Jaffrey's 'Eastern Vegetarian Cooking' for one of my stocking fillers.

Lovely looking international veg cook book. No posh photos but the research looks very good.

One of the things I find most interesting about veg cooking is the different traditions and regional styles where you will find veg dishes commonplace. This book covers Turkey, Japan, China, India, Korea and the Phillipines.

While non-vegan egg and dairy dishes are included, there is also a whole chapter on traditional Eastern vegan meatless protein-rich food-stuffs such as tofu, soya milk and seitan.

See here: Eastern Vegetarian Cooking

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,Steve Shaw pimple on Mudcat's arse
Date: 27 Dec 14 - 06:16 AM

Another great veggie pasta recipe from Sicily is Spaghetti alla Norma. There are several variations around but I like Jamie Oliver's one except with the aubergines cut a bit smaller. You do have to find nice young aubergines for this though. If they're going brown ands seedy in the middle, the skin will always be too tough and will spoil the dish.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: sciencegeek
Date: 27 Dec 14 - 07:53 AM

went a little wild in the produce section... tons of salad greens half price or more... guess salads didn't feature much at the Christmas table... organic spring mix greens, baby spinach and kale mix. oh for a stasis chamber to store them all away... lol.

So with so much spinach, just had to go to one of the oriental food stores to pick up some nice miso, tofu and a couple of fresh shitake mushrooms. If you haven't tried miso soup with fresh spinach and shaved shitakes, this is my Christmas present to you. Do so ASAP! Use the light or clear miso paste.. the red/dark is better for hot pot.

Mind you, while at the store I indulged in a Nathan's kosher all beef hot dog with saurkraut... pity they only had yellow mustard... dark whole see is sooo much better.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 Dec 14 - 02:42 PM

I am an organic gardener with canning jars and a large freezer. I grow tomatoes, peppers (several types), eggplant (aubergine), okra, onion, garlic, potatoes, squash, herbs, Swiss chard, asparagus, and I'm sure I'm forgetting some stuff. I grow broccoli, but don't always have luck with it (the growing season is a bit off in the south, it likes cooler weather).

One can only eat so much eggplant Parmesan before it gets old, and I have a number of sauces and casseroles that use eggplant, so I prepare it ahead and freeze it. Some of it is sliced, some is a small dice, some is quartered length-wise, all of it is sauteed, then it is frozen and bagged in a seal-a-meal vacuum bags. I freeze peppers, okra, and some of the tomato products, though I mostly can tomatoes (diced and as sauce and juice). Often times when I'm making something with a tomato sauce base I'll pull a handful of the diced eggplant out of the freezer and sautee it with the onions and peppers - it doesn't change the flavor so much as add a richness to the flavor, and of course, adds a few healthy nutrients.

As a gardener I learned a long time ago that you can't eat it all when it is ripe and ready, you have to learn to preserve it for year-round use. Gardening isn't always the cheapest way to get food, I could buy from the grocery on sale and have a lot less work, but I'd be contributing to the use of fertilizers and pesticides in monoculture crop environments and the low-wage workers who pick these crops. I know it is organic when I grow it myself and I'm not polluting the planet as I use compost and other organic materials to garden and improve my soil.

At the end of the growing season everything has to be picked before the first frost, and everything isn't always ripe. I use green tomatoes for relish - this year I had 3 gallons when I finished - it makes a great gift and I try to use a lot myself.

I have two children, so we replaced ourselves but didn't increase the population. If you want to make a quick shift (during a single generation) in the high populations in poor countries, give the women more autonomy. Research (which I would have to dig out, but is probably easily found) shows that when women are given access to micro-loans and can start their own small businesses they prosper and an immediate result is that they have fewer children. They are able to raise the children they do birth through infancy to adulthood, are able to better educate their children, and their villages are more prosperous. There is a surprisingly low level of default in the microloans (though with many more investors getting into the microloan business, this is bound to change - loans thrust into the hands of poor people without a plan leads to default - loans given in a strategic manner are successful).

SRS

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Dec 14 - 05:42 PM

Disappointing to see so many posts concentrating on the health benefits or lack of for humans when choosing to consume meat. The first question I normally ask when someone tells me they are vegetarian, vegan, pescetarian etc is why? The welfare, the rights and wrongs, the ethics in relation to the animal imo as they are the victims, should be considered before man's preferences.
Whilst I appreciate it isn't at this time in other parts of the world a viable option, it is a moral and ethical luxury in countries where access to alternatives are readily available. Choosing to consume a creature to sustain us from the sea that has most likely spent it's last hours/minutes suffocating or consuming a creature that will have spent it's last moments being as utterly petrified as you and I would have been if faced with the premature deliberate terminating of our life is a decision many choose oblivious to the these horrors.
I suggest a nice family fun day our at your nearest abattoir is the best way to inform especially our conditioned young before continuing consumption of meat.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,Stim
Date: 27 Dec 14 - 06:57 PM

Every living thing dies, GUEST. Most animals are killed and eaten by other animals, and it is seldom pretty. The ones that aren't killed often die of starvation.

For those who consider vegan and vegetarian diets to be more moral, consider that hundreds and thousands of animals are killed during the production and harvest of food. They may not be animals that you care much about, but they are living, breathing creatures, and probably think and feel, as well.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,Steve Shaw
Date: 27 Dec 14 - 07:25 PM

Well, I totally respect your right to be vegetarian or vegan, but I'm not going to become either, for several reasons (not the least of which is that I like eating meat, in common with peregrine falcons, grass snakes, snow leopards, pike, dragonflies and frogs). My gut is adapted quite well for digesting animal tissue but not quite so well for breaking down plant call walls. All the evidence from debris found at prehistoric settlements is that my ancestors ate meat that they first of all hunted and later obtained partly from animal husbandry. Eating meat has been a human tradition since the year dot. It is fairly tricky to obtain all the nutrients required for good health from a pure vegan diet. A good deal of marginal land on this planet is unsuitable for growing crops due to factors such as climatic extremes, steep slopes, thin soils or rocky terrain, all of which may render arable farming impractical but which are not obstacles for animal husbandry. Unlike crops, animals can be and are moved around seasonally. Without animals there would be no animal manure for fertiliser, which is free and very good for soil structure, vital in poorer parts of the world where the cost of artificial fertilisers is often prohibitive. We can learn a lot from the kind of so-called primitive or subsistence agriculture in so e rural areas of developing countries about long-term sustainability. I have no patience with the meat-is-murder-how-could-you-even-think-of-eating-the-poor-little-pink-things brigade. I'd rather listen to arguments for more organic farming, sustainability in agriculture that does away with damaging inputs (artificial nitrogen pollutes the atmosphere in its production, using up masses of energy from oil in the process, damages soil structure and pollutes rivers and groundwater - AND provides us with third-rate food), for humane farming practices (much of what we currently do is inexcusable), and properly conducted and supervised methods of slaughter.

Drag your kids to the abattoir? Good luck with that. But just check your motives first.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 27 Dec 14 - 11:38 PM

Stilly, I absolutely agree with your points about women in developing countries. Autonomy for women really is the key to improving everyone's lot. Give a girl an education and she will pass on her knowledge to her children. Give a young woman access to good information about sexual health and the necessary means to prevent unending pregnancies and her liberty, resources and health will also be improved with a knock on benefit to her family. Give her access to a little money, enough to invest in a small business (as well as the means to keep it in her own possession rather than those of her male relatives), and she will become economically independent with knock on benefits to her children who will learn the skills she has learned. It's quite striking how closely women's emancipation is bound to emancipation for all.

As for the unnamed guest, I find it disappointing that you decided to post purely in order to criticise those participating in this thread, for failing to meet your standards of animal rights advocacy. You could have posted some useful information, some helpful guidance, or some great recipes, but you'd evidently rather criticise. This kind of approach simply reinforces negative stereotypes of vegans being exclusive, intolerant, critical purists. Good luck with that style of advocacy, but unless your goal is to alienate others, it simply does no good. And in particular you're not doing the animals you claim to care about any good, criticising people for going vegan for the 'wrong' reasons, or going vegan slowly or in a piecemeal fashion. Meanwhile the ranks of the 'health' vegans continue to grow *despite* critics like you popping up on the internet, doing your best to undermine and belittle their choices, efforts and impact.

In other news we are having Vegetable Paulo and dahl from my new cook book later. Num.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: sciencegeek
Date: 28 Dec 14 - 09:49 AM

I found the bullion on Amazon... but at least it has a photo you print to show your local stores when asking if it's available.

Totole - Granulated Mushroom Bouillon 454 g /16 Oz

haven't tried it yet, but maybe next weekend.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 28 Dec 14 - 11:35 AM

Change of plan for tonight's meal as I've run out of onions (as I cook from scratch a lot, I go through onions like no-one's business) and I've no idea how to do Indian food without them, so instead it's a simple tomato, garlic sauce over gnocchi.

I LOVE gnocchi, I'm sure homemade is the best but I simply can't be bothered when the bought stuff is as nummy as it is.

Top tip for vegan folkie campers (or the meat eating kind of folkie camper), get your gnocchi in! Takes no time at all to reheat in boiling water, and with the addition of some olive oil and pesto, along with a bag of mixed leaves and some crusty bread, you have a tasty satisfying dish ready in a flash. Really useful stuff to get in for a folk weekend, whether camping in a tent with a little portable gas hob as I do or in a camper van with a marginally more glamorous kitchen.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 28 Dec 14 - 11:46 AM

I make my own potato gnocchi in big batches and open-freeze what I don't need straight away. I even bought myself a nice potato ricer to do the job. You can cook it from frozen. My preferred recipe is vegetarian rather than vegan as it requires mozzarella - gnocchi alla Sorrentina. I make a sort of intensified tomato sauce for this, using lots of basil, garlic and sundried tomato paste to jolly up the canned tomatoes a bit. Good, healthy grub.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 28 Dec 14 - 11:50 AM

This afternoon I did what I called a 'Vegan Cream of Christmas' soup. Easy peasy.

Just get whatever oddments of veg you have left over peeled and diced. I did mine in two piles; in one the slower cooking stuff like carrots, spuds and parsnip, and in the other quicker cooking stuff like brussels sprouts (I roughly shredded these), and peas.

Finely slice some onion and celery, then saute in a glug of olive oil. Add hot vegetable stock (not a lot though - just enough to cover your veg) and then your slow cooking veg. I boiled these for about ten minutes. Then I added the quicker cooking veg and simmered for another ten minutes.

Mix a small carton of vegan cream substitute (I prefer oat cream to soya) with a bit of cornflour or white flour (use your own judgement based on the volume of liquid) then stir in and reheat stirring until it starts to thicken. Add pepper and salt - and a bit of nutmeg if liked - to taste.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 28 Dec 14 - 11:52 AM

On this cold dark day I pulled out Heaven's Banquet to take a look at some of her recipes - the soup section looks very tempting. I'll try that tortilla soup recipe soon, but as I was reading it occurred to me to make my family's favorite split pea soup. My soup isn't vegetarian, it has a ham hock, but it is perfect for this kind of weather and is a healthy choice. I also have a bag of lentils and I have totally fallen in love with the lentil soup served at my favorite Lebanese restaurant. This is the season for soup experimentation!

SRS

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 28 Dec 14 - 11:55 AM

Hmm Steve, homemade gnocchi may yet have me tempted. I like the idea of making gnocchi in a large batch and freezing ready to use. In fact I like anything that I can cook and freeze ahead.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 28 Dec 14 - 12:18 PM

"On this cold dark day I pulled out Heaven's Banquet to take a look at some of her recipes - the soup section looks very tempting. I'll try that tortilla soup recipe soon, but as I was reading it occurred to me to make my family's favorite split pea soup. My soup isn't vegetarian, it has a ham hock, but it is perfect for this kind of weather and is a healthy choice. I also have a bag of lentils and I have totally fallen in love with the lentil soup served at my favorite Lebanese restaurant. This is the season for soup experimentation!
SRS"

Yes, the depths of winter really is a good time to make soup.

I love soup. It's also great for anyone trying to lose a bit of weight - so long as there's not vast quantities of cream and butter.

I make a smokey split pea soup using smoked paprika instead of ham hock. Works a treat. Then there's also that smoked Maldon sea salt for table top seasoning (probably only available in UK deli-like places) which is a great addition to the seasonings cupboard when looking for a 'bacony' flavour.

What's your Lebanese lentil soup like? As a lentil lover I'm intrigued..

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 28 Dec 14 - 12:34 PM

Paprika would taste good, but I wonder if it would change the color? I puree my soup, but I suppose it wouldn't take much paprika. I've heard about that smoked salt, and I also found some smoked basmati rice in the Halal market where I shop - something to try, adding a little rice, but it comes in a huge lifetime supply bag.

I hadn't eaten lentil soup before the last couple of years, I just never crossed its path. This place only makes it in the cold season. The stock is a well-salted possible chicken broth (or lamb broth - I just looked in my middle eastern cookbook), small-dice onions, pepper. Very simple. I imagine it has the effect of a blood transfusion on someone who is a pint low - the warm salty broth hits the palate and then the stomach and washes through your nervous system like an instant dose of endorphins.

SRS

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 28 Dec 14 - 12:46 PM

This is my recipe for smokey paprika soup. I use yellow split peas and the smoked paprika turns the soup a tad more golden:

Yellow Split Pea and Paprika Soup

Ingredients:

2 cups yellow split peas, rinsed
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 onions, finely chopped
3 or 4 carrots, diced
8 cups hot vegetable stock (I use Marigold Bouillon)
2 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tbsp tomato puree
juice of 1 lemon
half a tsp ground black pepper
salt to taste

Method:

Heat the oil in a large pan and add the chopped onion. Saute for a few minutes then add the garlic and saute for a couple more minutes.
Add the paprika and cayenne and allow the spices to cook briefly before adding the carrots.
Allow to cook for a few minutes more then add the hot stock, split peas, tomato puree and black pepper.
Bring to the boil, reduce the heat, cover and simmer for about 1 hour – stirring occasionally – until the split peas are tender.
Take off the heat, add the lemon juice and blend until smooth – I use a hand held immersion blender.
If thicker than desired reduce the thickness of the soup with a little more hot water and season with salt to taste. Reheat if necessary.
Serve with crispy croutons if liked.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 28 Dec 14 - 12:48 PM

PS - you may want to halve that recipe if cooking for one or two.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 28 Dec 14 - 08:51 PM

I thought I had a ham hock in the freezer but couldn't find it so I used a little bacon grease for the smoky flavor (I sauteed my onions in a mix of olive oil and bacon grease - it may sound odd, but it tastes great).

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Jeri
Date: 28 Dec 14 - 09:52 PM

Was that vegan bacon?

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,Stim
Date: 29 Dec 14 - 02:39 AM

This is a vegan thread, SRS. Why are you talking about ham hocks?

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 29 Dec 14 - 03:26 AM

For US Mudcatters who are vegan / vegetarian or on a low-cholesterol diet like me, you can get this stuff that is a vegan imitation of bacon grease (reviews say stuff like 'freakin awesome' and 'awe. some' so I'm guessing it's good). I think it's coconut oil flavoured with liquid smoke. People use it with greens (collards) and in savoury muffins and pea soup. Folks also use it to fry their vegan bacon.

Magic Vegan Bacon Grease

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 29 Dec 14 - 03:49 AM

We were talking a bit about Seitan or 'Buddhist Meat' earlier on the thread which is a traditional oriental protein rich alternative to meat, made from wheat gluten (so no good for coeliacs).

It has a great texture for a vegan product, and forms the basis of some fairly tasty bought vegetarian savoury sandwich slices as well as sausages and chicken-style chunks.

You can make seitan at home with something called 'vital wheat gluten flour' that you can buy online (do look around for the best online deals as it can work out a bit pricey otherwise).

A Seitan alternative to a baked ham - made from vital wheat gluten flour - is something I mean to have a go at soon. In fact I meant to try it over Xmas but maybe I'll try it for new year instead.

Some online recipes go the whole hog (so to speak) and actually make it look eerily like ham by doing all the criss crossing and clove studding. But for some reason I find that a bit weird, so I'll probably make something that looks a bit less glazed-ham-like , and a bit more plain-roll-like like this:

Seitan 'Ham'

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 29 Dec 14 - 04:23 AM

"Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: sciencegeek
Date: 28 Dec 14 - 09:49 AM
I found the bullion on Amazon... but at least it has a photo you print to show your local stores when asking if it's available.
Totole - Granulated Mushroom Bouillon 454 g /16 Oz
haven't tried it yet, but maybe next weekend."

Sciencegeek, I haven't used granulated mushroom bouillon, but I have used Kallo mushroom stock cubes which are good.

Further to soup season, Moosewood is a series of veggie cookbooks that the awld hippies may remember, and this barley mushroom soup is one that I've made from there and liked. Your mushroom stock would be perfect here:

Moosewood Mushroom Barley Soup

Mushroom Barley Soup

1/2 cup raw pearled barley
6 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken stock, vegetable stock (or water)
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 or 4 tablespoons tamari (a type of soy sauce)
3 or 4 tablespoons dry sherry
3 tablespoons butter
4 cloves minced garlic
1 heaping cup chopped onion
1 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

In a soup pot, bring 1 1/2 cups of stock to a boil. Stir in barley, cover with a lid and reduce heat to low. Simmer until barley is tender, about 35 minutes. (Note: If you soak the barley over night in a cup of water or stock, you can reduce cooking time to around 15 minutes.)
Add the remaining stock, tamari and sherry.
Saute the onions and garlic in butter over medium heat. When they soften, add mushrooms and 1/2 teaspoon salt. When all is tender, add to the barley--making sure to include all of the liquid in the pan.
Generously sprinkle with black pepper and simmer for 20 minutes, covered, over the lowest possible heat. Taste to adjust seasonings. Serve hot.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: sciencegeek
Date: 29 Dec 14 - 06:48 AM

I used the mushroom bullion last night... just add boiling water and the last of the sliced shitakes for a simple light supper. A very nice product. Just as flavorful as when you use the dried shitake stems for broth.

I think I'll pick up a few more cans while they're on sale. The vacuum sealed can should store nicely and the hubby preferred it to the miso.

I think some hot pot meals with this or kim chee will be great as the winter returns this week.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 29 Dec 14 - 10:02 AM

One of the groups I support is the American Farmland Trust... an advocacy group that works to preserve our farmland that is vulnerable to development. Forty years ago, a joke among those involved in agriculture was, "What's the terminal crop for a mid west crop rotation?" answer... a subdivision. When our economy is rigged so that most of the "wealth" of the average American is tied up in their land, a retiring farmer can't afford to retire unles they sell the land... and their kids either don't want to farm or else it is too expensive for them to buy.

AFT began nearly 35 years ago with a clear vision – to protect America's family farms and ensure they can provide a healthy, sustainable food supply. Its experienced staff:

•       Pressures federal and state lawmakers to preserve America's remaining farmlands.
•       Works with cities and states to create smart development plans that minimize impact on family farmers.
•       Educates consumers through its No Farms No Food campaign about the importance of supporting our nation's family farmers, especially through purchases at farmers markets.
•       Protects the environment by helping farmers use sustainable and financially-incentivized farming practices.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 29 Dec 14 - 10:18 AM

Just a few more days before new year and there's a new gimmick for january come 2015 called veganuary.

After all the sherry trifle, cheddar, stilton, sausage rolls and pork stuffing it would seem to be a good time of year to consider ditching the meat eggs and dairy; for those who fancy dipping their toes in but not getting too committed in any event, as it's just one month. See more here:


http://www.veganuary.com/about/

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 29 Dec 14 - 12:00 PM

The subject has strayed into meat eating as well - read back through the thread. Making split pea soup without a hamhock is a big deal - for a meat eater to substitute a couple of tablespoons of bacon grease is a step in the direction of eating less meat, if not completely removing it from the diet.

SRS

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 29 Dec 14 - 12:16 PM

I've tried using Marigold powder when vegetable stock is called for but it's far too salty for me. To get the right level of salt (which for us is a low level) I have to dilute it far too much for any flavour to show through. I make veg stock from sliced-up carrots, onions, celery, parsley, thyme and a bay leaf or two, and a bit of green veg if I have any, boiled until I remember to turn it off, then I squidge it all and sieve it. The only other stock I generally bother to make is chicken stock whenever we've roasted a chicken. All of the above plus the carcass, and I never skim it. I'm not going to throw flavour away! I always find stock made from ham hocks to be too salty. I have a great recipe for pea soup that uses frozen peas (Birdseye or nothing) and chicken stock.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stanron
Date: 29 Dec 14 - 01:55 PM

I've only just discovered this thread and it's taken almost a day and a half to read it all. Fascinating stuff. I'm not vegan, not even fully vegetarian but round about 1997 I cut all bovine stuff from my diet. No beef, cheese, milk or butter except on the very rare occasions when I'm eating at someone else's table and don't want to make a fuss.

18 months ago I did something called a juicing fast for three months. The idea is to eat nothing and just drink juices extracted from fruit and vegetables.

In those three months I lost about four stone and my cholesterol went down from 7.9 to 2. something. It's the sort of thing that takes a bit of commitment to start but if you can get into it the rewards can be enough to keep you going. Mind you it would be impossible to do it if all the circumstances were not right. For a start it was during the summer. When I tried it after the following New Year I found I just got far too cold if I didn't eat high calorific food. I am retired and I doubt if I could have done this while working and I now live on my own so there is not the temptation or distraction of a non participating partner.

For the first two months I was fully vegan. In the last month I started to eat small amounts of goats milk cheese just before going to bed.

I'm still fully non bovine and trying to be non grain as well. As an alternative to normal flour I use Gram flour, which as you may well know is made from chick peas. With this I can make a great cauliflower cheese and breads. Without the cheese it's a great thick sauce but yellow rather than white.

Yellow Sauce

50 to 60 grams of Gram flour in a saucepan with oil of your choice enough to make a paste.
Gentle heat until it starts to fizz.
Add milk, I use hemp or oat milk type, slowly until you have enough.
Keep on gentle heat and keep stirring while it thickens.

It's not bechamel, it's not white but I like it.

I'll get through five or six small tins of mackeral a week, occasionally some Quorn as a meat substitute and now and then white meat, only rarely red meat. I do like ham and lamb but it is so expensive I begrudge spending the money.

Buying ingredients is by far the cheapest way to eat. The only time I'll buy prepared food is when it's on the reduced shelf in Tescos. The cheapskate in me finds it hard to resist.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 29 Dec 14 - 02:04 PM

just a footnote on the mushroom granules... very high in MSG for those who are sensitive to that.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 03:05 AM

Stanron that's an interesting use for gram flour! I'd guess it's richer than a plain bechamel.

Gram flour seems like quite a versatile ingredient. I've seen a number of ways that it can be employed in vegan cooking.

You don't mention cutting out eggs, but for anyone who doesn't eat eggs - whether for health or ethical reasons - you can make a cross between a vegan omelette and a pancake with gram flour.

It makes a savoury filling brunch. The Italians call it farinata. I like to use grated courgette to keep it moist on the inside which turns it from being a dry 'pancake' and more towards a soft 'omelette'.

Vegan Chickpea Flour and Courgette Omelette

Makes 2 large pancakes, which make 2 main dish servings or 4 appetizer/side dish servings

3 medium zucchini, or about 4 cups shredded
2 zucchini flowers (optional; adds a bit of color)
Some coriander or basil leaves (optional: adds flavor)
1 cup chickpea flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. garam masala
1/2 tsp. hot red chili powder
1/2 tsp. curry powder
Olive oil for cooking
Equipment needed: a non-stick frying pan

Finely shred the zucchini - I use a food processor for this. Julienne the zucchini flowers and the herbs. Put all into a large bowl; add the salt, spices and the chickpea flour. Mix well - the moisture that comes out of the zucchini may be enough to turn this into a batter, but if not add a tiny bit of water, just so that it turns moist but not runny.

Heat up a small (8 inch / 20cm) non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat. Add some olive oil and spread around. Put in about half of the batter and spread around to form a circle. Cook for about 5 minutes, then turn and cook for another 5 minutes or so, until it's cooked all the way through. (You can slice into the middle a bit to see if there's any batter oozing still; if so, cook a bit more.) Repeat for the other half of the batter.

Cut into wedges, and serve hot or at room temperature.

Note: If you want a crispy outside, use more oil in the pan; if you want it soft (and less caloric) add less. You can use ghee or butter instead of the olive oil.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 06:53 AM

More soup for lunch, I feel like I need some simple veg brews now. I'm so unused to all this animal rich food that it's getting unappetising already, and there's still loads of stilton left uneaten.

Today I'm doing a Greek lentil soup called Fakes Soupa; a dead simple concoction of small whole lentils with carrots and tomatoes, flavoured with herbs and garlic.

The real secret lies in seasoning the soup once served, with a dash of nice vinegar (balsamic or red wine). A Greek friend introduced this to me something like twenty years ago, and she said the vinegar was what makes it so good. I agree.

There are lots of recipes for Fakes online, heres one: http://www.mygreekdish.com/recipe/lentil-soup-fakes-soupa/

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 06:59 AM

This one's actually much more like the way I do it:

Fakes Soupa / Greek Lentil Soup

Ingredients
Serves: 4

225g brown lentils
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 onion, minced
1 large carrot, chopped
1 litre water
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon crushed dried rosemary
2 bay leaves
1 1/2 tablespoons tomato puree
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
red wine vinegar to taste

Method
Prep:20min › Cook:1hr › Ready in:1hr20min
Place lentils in a large saucepan, and pour in water to cover. Place over medium-high heat and bring to the boil; cook for 10 minutes, then drain lentils into a strainer.
Dry saucepan, pour in olive oil and place over medium-low heat. Add garlic, onion and carrot; cook and stir until the onion has softened and turned translucent, about 5 minutes. Pour in lentils, 1 litre water, oregano, rosemary and bay leaves. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
Stir in tomato puree and season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover and simmer until the lentils have softened, 30 to 40 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add additional water if the soup becomes too thick. Ladle into soup bowls, and drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil and red wine vinegar to serve.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 07:14 AM

That sounds very nice. Whenever I've done recipes like that, I find that the softening stage takes a lot longer than five minutes! I think I'd chuck in a bit of celery, too.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 09:09 AM

Any suggestions for a vegetarian black eyed pea recipe? I have my own simple one that I like but this dish has to appeal to vegetarians and meat-eaters (if possible) at a New Years Day gathering. Thanks.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 09:27 AM

is salsa an option?

black eyed peas, drained
black beans, drained
white corn, yellow if not available
tomato
onion
garlic
cilantro greens and/or lime juice to taste
add salsa seasoning or vinegrette dressing

amounts are always variable in my life... lol depends on what's at hand

serve with corn or tortilla chips

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 09:42 AM

This is the one I've been cooking. We like it lots. Good served with roasted sweet potatoes or pumpkin patties and a big pile of sauteed greens.

Serves about eight.

"Hoppin' Jane"

1lb / 500g black-eyed peas, soaked overnight
1 litre vegetable stock
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp vegetable margarine
1 onion, chopped
2 sweet/bell peppers (red or green), seeded and chopped
2 sticks celery, finely chopped
2 carrots, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 bay leaves
Salt & Pepper, to taste
Pinch of celery salt
1 Tablespoon Cajun or Creole seasoning
Hot chilli sauce to taste

Put the oil & marge in a frying pan and add the chopped veg.
Saute gently until they're tender.
Scrape into a slow cooker / crock pot and add everything else.
Cook on low for about three hours, or until the beans are tender (I put a towel over the top of the slow cooker which keeps it simmering lightly). You could of course just put it all into a heavy bottomed pan with a good lid and do it on the stove for about an hour or so.

To serve, mix into hot steamed brown rice.

I use this recipe - Steamed brown rice

Twice that recipe, or in other words four cups of raw rice - cooked, should be about the right ratio to mix with the cooked beans. The whole lot will serve around eight or more.

As we aren't a huge family, but only the two of us, I tend to divide the beans into four portions of two servings to freeze for later. Then when we eat them, I steam one cup of raw rice, to toss the re-heated beans into.

I hope that all made sense!

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 09:55 AM

PS that's a pretty generous 'eight' servings, think eight to twelve depending on appetite and whatever else you're serving it with. My fella thinks it's really tasty.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 10:23 AM

That sounds good and I'll try it sometime but this needs to be something more conventional served with cornbread. I'm looking to add something that might give it a ham hocky flavor without the hocks.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 10:34 AM

I was responding to sciencegeek, CS, but your recipe is very similar to mine except for the cajun/creole seasoning which I'll defintely include. As I said I want to add something to give a meatier flavor for the carnivores in attendance. Will incorporating mushrooms in some way help?

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 10:34 AM

I use smoked paprika here in the UK, as well as smoked salt at the table. Both grant a nice bacony effect. Smoked cheese is also nice in the right place, as is smoked tofu.

In the States you can get stuff called 'Liquid Smoke' - all the vegan blogs use it for 'Southern' style dishes. Depending on where you live, it might be a challenge getting some by new year's day though.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 10:40 AM

Down here in the south there is a tradition that black-eyed peas eaten on New Year's Day bring good luck. I'm not from the south and I've never eaten them, but I did just examine the photos on Google image search. In lieu of salsa, I would suggest green tomato relish. That is a popular garnish for bean dishes (pinto in particular) in old style restaurants.

I'm with you, gillymor, on the ham hock flavor - what other smoked foods would be good in a bean dish? I smoke fish, cheese, poultry, and meat. I have used smoked turkey wings in beans before, but I'm pretty sure it isn't approved in any vegan, let alone vegetarian menu. I grill Hatch chiles (a variety of Anaheim peppers grown in New Mexico) to remove the skins before I use those in cooking - they might add some smokey flavor, even after the skins are removed and I love peppers in my beans. It would take a considerable amount of grilled pepper to impart the same amount of smoke, though.

SRS

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 10:40 AM

in the US, we can get smoked paprika as well as liquid smoke.

many stores also carry Cajun & Creole seasonings. would artifical bacon bits work in a pinch? below is info on Kitchen Bouquet which is often used for stews & gravies... but seems to be meatless:

Kitchen Bouquet is a bottled condiment sauce used as an ingredient in cooking, rather than as a table condiment. It is mostly used for its ability to add a dark brown colour. It's generically referred to as a "browning agent."

Brushing it on the top of meat before cooking can help the meat end up with a more well-roasted look.

Kitchen Bouquet can also be used to darken gravy, soups and marinades, and to enhance the colour of foods cooked in the microwave, electric indoor grills or in slow cookers, which might not brown otherwise and end up with an undesirable grey appearance.

Some people think it has no flavour; some people think the flavour is an important part of it; some people don't like the flavour, thinking it tastes burnt. The truth is, the flavour tastes mildly like beef. It is made from herbs, spices, vegetables and water.

It comes in an iconic brown bottle with yellow label whose look hasn't changed for decades [1]. The bottle was glass, but is now plastic. Kitchen Bouquet is used in small quantities, so one bottle lasts a long time.

From time to time, Kitchen Bouquet has been used in alcoholic drinks in place of bitters to add a bit of colour and taste.

It is a favourite of food stylists for how it can make food look deliciously roasted.

It is not the same as Maggi bottled sauce, which is also brown; Maggi has a much stronger, saltier taste.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 10:50 AM

Anyone got any tips for great Bubble & Squeak?

That's what we're having for supper later, along with the last of the Xmas meat (some Wiltshire dry-cured back bacon).

Should be simple enough but I've never managed to get it quite right.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stanron
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 10:56 AM

CS I'm nearly finished with the recipe you linked to for Greek Lentil soup. Waiting for it to thicken now but it tastes amazing already. Only just got it all in my biggest pan. I'll halve it next time. Cheers.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 11:13 AM

Lots of good suggestions re black eyed peas and I'll try some on an experimental batch tonight. Smoked papika and roasted chiles sound interesting. I'm going to include some kind of minced mushrooms in hopes of giving it a more robust flavor. Any ideas on the best type for that?

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 11:17 AM

portabella caps are often used as mock burgers... and have a deep flavor. diced & sauted eggplant is often used in meatless tomato sauce for pasta dishes that make it more filling.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 11:34 AM

The fat in foods that are smoked is what imparts the flavor to dishes. I do have Liquid Smoke - it has to be used very carefully or you get too much. And you need to find a substitute fat that will give the right mouth feel to the food as well as make it more digestible. Fat is often considered the culprit when it comes to dieting and food, but it is necessary. Oils in the place of chicken or beef or pork fat are logical, but they aren't all created equal either.

I no longer use Canola oil (rape seed, a GMO intensive crop largely out of Canada these days, hence the Can in the oil name) and I rarely use corn or soy vegetable oil, only when there is something I'm going to fry in shallow oil that I don't want to waste my good olive oil on. Mostly I use olive oil I buy at a Halal middle eastern grocery in 3-litre bottles. Green and in large thick glass bottles labeled from one or another town in Lebanon or Israel, not gathered from nations all around the Mediterranean and packaged as virgin cold pressed oil. I just don't believe it.

I was using Grape seed oil (good for high heat cooking) until a health guru on a gardening program I like said it has too much Omega 6. Macadamia oil is supposed to be good for high temperatures and has Omega 3 but is very expensive. I tried some in a misto dispenser for spraying on skillets before cooking. It's okay, but the price is the issue. I like the oil in avocado, but I only eat that raw, I have never cooked with it.

SRS

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 11:48 AM

Stanron, you'll have to do as I do and keep your soup in the fridge to use for lunches or suppers for the rest of the week! I find soup in the fridge keeps perfectly for *at least* five days.

I like my Greek lentils quite thick and more stew-like than soup-like, but I do it by eye rather than measuring, so I just add 'enough' water to bring it all to the boil and then top it up to the right consistency once the lentils start thickening up. You may find that approach suits you too.

You can crumble a little Greek sheep's feta over the soup once served up if you fancy it. I've also seen Fakes served with toasted pitta bread (though personally I like a fat wholemeal crust smothered in sunflower marge).

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 12:19 PM

Stilly you're right about the Omega 3 / 6 ratio. It's an issue that plant eaters / vegans in particular should probably pay attention to as those who eat fish are probably less likely to be out of whack.

This chart seems to indicate that flaxseed oil is a good option for omega 3 content:

http://authoritynutrition.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/fatty-acid-breakdown-of-different-fats.jpg

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,gillymor
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 12:28 PM

SRS: "Fat is often considered the culprit when it comes to dieting and food, but it is necessary. Oils in the place of chicken or beef or pork fat are logical, but they aren't all created equal either."

Are you suggesting I add more oil beyond the olive oil I use to saute the veggies in my hock-less BE Peas?

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 12:35 PM

Groundnut oil is neutral in flavour and has a high smoke point. Very good for hot frying and for doing your oven chips. You hardly ever need to be using extra virgin olive oil for cooking, in fact it's usually not a good idea at all. For most of my Italian recipes I use ordinary olive oil (Napolina's a good brand here) for cooking. EVOO is for dressings. I have a special bottle for drizzling over soup or pasta. One thing I never do is read wacky nutrition books that might get me worrying about omega this or that. As far as I know the jury's out on all that in any case. Life's too short.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 12:36 PM

I grew up eating lentil soup & just found this - looks tasty

lentil & mushroom shepards pie - 8 or more servings

n 8 large or 10 medium potatoes (Yukon gold works well)
n 2 tablespoons Earth Balance or other vegan buttery spread
n 1/2 cup unsweetened rice milk or other nondairy milk
n Salt to taste
n 2 tablespoons olive oil
n 1 large onion, finely chopped
n 2 cloves garlic, minced
n 6 ounces cremini or baby bella mushrooms, sliced
n Two 15-ounce cans lentils, lightly drained
n 2 tablespoons dry red wine, optional
n 1 to 2 tablespoon reduced-sodium soy sauce or Bragg's liquid aminos
n 2 to 3 teaspoons all-purpose seasoning blend (such as Spike or Mrs. Dash)
n 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
n 3 tablespoons cornstarch or arrowroot
n 8 to 10 ounces baby spinach or arugula leaves
n Freshly ground pepper to taste
n 1 cup fresh bread crumbs

Peel and dice the potatoes. Place in a large saucepan with enough water to cover. Bring to a simmer, then cover and simmer until tender, about 20 minutes. Drain and transfer to a small mixing bowl.
Stir the Earth Balance into the potatoes until melted, then add the rice milk and mash until fluffy.

Season with salt, cover, and set aside until needed.
Preheat the oven to 400º F.
While the potatoes are cooking, heat the oil in a medium skillet. Add the onion and sauté over medium heat until translucent. Add the garlic and mushrooms and continue to sauté until the onion
is golden.

Add the lentils and their liquid and bring to a gentle simmer. Stir in
the optional wine, soy sauce, seasoning blend, thyme, and pepper.
Cook gently for 5 minutes. Combine the cornstarch with just enough
water to dissolve in a small container. Stir into the lentil mixture.

Add the spinach, a little at a time, cooking just until it's all wilted down. Remove from the heat; taste
to adjust seasonings to your liking.
Lightly oil a 2-quart (preferably round) casserole dish, or two deep-dish pie plates. Scatter the
breadcrumbs evenly over the bottom. Pour in the lentil mixture, then spread the potatoes evenly
over the top. If using two pie plates, divide each mixture evenly between them.
Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the potatoes begin to turn golden and slightly crusty. Let stand
for 5 to 10 minutes, then cut into wedges to serve.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 12:48 PM

You might want to add a little more beyond the amount you use to saute the sofrito, especially if you use non-stick pans that don't require much to begin with. Oil is an important way to transmit flavor in foods.

That cheese over the soup sounds heavenly. :) This is a fasting day, with one 500 calorie meal. I should stay away from this thread until after I've eaten, it's making me hungry! (I'm working on losing the last 10 pounds, using an alternate day modified fast routine that works well for me).

SRS

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 03:32 PM

"Are you suggesting I add more oil beyond the olive oil I use to saute the veggies in my hock-less BE Peas?"

Gillymore, I've tended to find that traditional meat-free 'peasant' dishes, are often somewhat higher in oil than you will tend to find in more modern vegetarian dishes. As Stilly suggests this does tend to make such dishes 'richer' and thus more flavourful. It also makes them more calorific, which for people working an energetic life on the land, is typically a pretty good thing. It's also fine for 'festive' dishes, which are less frequent than everyday food.

Personally speaking for everyday use, I tend to go for a maximum of one or two tablespoons of oil in any dish. I probably wouldn't go beyond one ounce of marge or butter (if that way inclined) these days in a richer dish.

Fat doesn't give me the heebie jeebies (I happily eat seeds, nuts and avocados, and I also eat oily fish), but I just don't think it's necessary to add too much in the way of artificially refined fats to otherwise natural wholefoods (much in the way I don't think it necessary to add much in the way of artificially refined sugars to food).

That's my opinion :)

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 30 Dec 14 - 08:59 PM

If you stick to the healthy oils and fats, and look out for the empty sugar and white flour types of carbs, you'll be healthier than avoiding fats across the board. I don't know if there are "levels" of vegetarian eating - we read here of someone who doesn't eat beef - are there those who will just eat fish? That is a good source of healthy oil, in wild-caught oily fish.

SRS

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 31 Dec 14 - 03:04 AM

"I don't know if there are "levels" of vegetarian eating - we read here of someone who doesn't eat beef - are there those who will just eat fish? That is a good source of healthy oil, in wild-caught oily fish."

Stilly there are levels of exclusion that have their own terms.

Vegans eat no foodstuffs that include animal ingredients of any kind, that means nothing from any kind of fish, flesh or fowl - no meat, fish, bird, eggs or dairy (including butter milk or cheese products) of any kind.

Vegetarians eat "nothing that has a face" no fish, flesh or fowl, but they may eat eggs and dairy.

Pescetarians eat no land animals or birds, but they do eat fish. This kind of diet that is often adopted for health reasons. They may or may not also choose to eat eggs and dairy (I've heard egg and dairy excluding pesectarians called 'pescans')

Then there are those meat eaters that get termed 'Meat Reducers' (also sometime Semi-Vegetarian or Flexitarian) they may eat meat once a week or something similar, but they minimise the amount of meat they eat quite considerably. Sometimes for health reasons and sometimes for ecological reasons. Typically Meat Reducers will eat a lot less meat but make sure that what meat they do buy is organic and free range with good welfare standards. At a guess I would suppose that those of us on this thread most broadly fit into this category.

It can seem complicated on a thread like this where everyone is doing something different and has their own different dietary goals. In fact think we only have one actual vegan posting here, and that was the OP Chanteyranger. My goals for 2015 remain pretty much the same as I've been doing 2014, mostly plant based with some fish but no eggs dairy or meat (well, maybe a free-range chicken or free-range meat for Christmas as we did this year)

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 31 Dec 14 - 03:29 AM

I forgot the best one "Plant-based diet"

It's a fairly new term that's being used by a number of US MD's who have done a lot of promotion of focusing on a mainly plant diet for purely health reasons rather than ideological reasons. It works because you can be 'Plant Based' but still eat a bit of fish or chicken or similar once in a while, without it implying any contradiction. So plant based encompasses everyone who is aiming to reduce or minimise their meat consumption.

Google for material from:

Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn
Dr. Colin Campbell
Dr John McDougall

They're all about using a plant based diet to correct health problems such as heart disease, obesity, diabetes, and some cancers that are often correlated with the SAD (Standard American diet) high in processed foods, animal foods, sugar and saturated fats.

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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 31 Dec 14 - 04:04 AM

Sciencegeek, lentil shepherd's pie is great! One of our staple meals during colder weather. For some reason potatoes and lentil go wonderfully together - very satisfying.

This is the recipe I use, which doesn't include mushrooms (though I think I will next time)

Lentil Shepherd's Pie

Ingredients:

1 large onion, chopped
2 medium carrots, sliced
2 sticks of celery, sliced
1 – 2 tbsp vegetable oil
8 oz / 250 g whole lentils (brown, green or speckled – just not the red split variety)
1 & 1/2 pints / 900 ml boiling water
1 tin chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp yeast extract, Vegemite or Vecon
2 sprigs fresh rosemary or 2 tsp dried
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tbsp brown sauce
2 & 1/2 lbs / 1 kg potatoes
a bunch of spring onions, finely sliced
2 oz dairy-free margarine (and a little extra to dot over the top of the mash)
A splash of non-dairy milk to let down the mash
2 tsp course cornmeal / polenta
1 tsp paprika

Method:

Heat oil in a large saucepan and add the chopped onion. Once softened add the sliced carrots and celery and continue to saute for a few more minutes.
Add the lentils, water, black pepper, tinned tomatoes, rosemary and brown sauce.
Bring to boil, lower the heat, put on lid, and simmer for about 45 minutes or til most of the liquid is absorbed and th


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 21 Feb 15 - 03:55 AM

Wow, two months of postings lost to Mudcat. That's a real shame for the song threads in particular.

As for this thread, here's the internet cache for up to a few days ago:

Vegan Mudcatters - Cache

Stilly: in theory there should be online caches for all threads that need patching up. I suggest thread starters - or other volunteers - could take on the task of cutting and pasting lost material from cache to MC?


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Feb 15 - 07:18 PM

A lot has gone missing (for now, after the crash of Feb 20)) but since this is such a great thread I've pulled it out of the nether regions of mudcat post history.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 24 Dec 14 - 08:39 AM

Not a post about veganism, or even vegetarianism this one. Instead I'm flagging up a piece by George Monbiot in the Guardian promoting collectively significantly reduced meat consumption for the benefit of all. As my partner is a meat eater and he really fancied some meat dishes for the festive season, this is how we've approached this Xmas ourselves. I will be doing free-range gammon steaks for Xmas eve dinner, a free-range chicken for Xmas dinner and some venison sausages for Boxing day before returning to another meat-free year in 2015:

If You Eat Meat, Save it For Christmas

"This system is also devastating the land and the sea. Farm animals consume one third of global cereal production, 90% of soya meal and 30% of the fish caught. Were the grain now used to fatten animals reserved instead for people, an extra 1.3 billion could be fed. Meat for the rich means hunger for the poor.
    What comes out is as bad as what goes in. The manure from factory farms is spread ostensibly as fertiliser, but often in greater volumes than crops can absorb: arable land is used as a dump. It sluices into rivers and the sea, creating dead zones sometimes hundreds of miles wide. Lymbery reports that beaches in Brittany, where there are 14 million pigs, have been smothered by so much seaweed, whose growth is promoted by manure, that they have had to be closed as a lethal hazard: one worker scraping it off the shore apparently died of hydrogen sulphide poisoning, caused by the weed's decay.
    It is madness, and there is no anticipated end to it: the world's livestock population is expected to rise by 70% by 2050."


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 27 Nov 14 - 04:03 AM

I should add, I have also cooked this in the slow cooker - same amount of time on Low - turned out fine. And the beans freeze really well too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 27 Nov 14 - 04:01 AM

This is my recipe for vegan Boston Baked Beans, which is one of my favourite things to cook during damp Autumnal weather such as we are having now in the UK. Serve with a big fluffy baked potato and a pile of coleslaw on the side (made with vegan mayonnaise, which I'm going to try later today - I will report back)

http://pennyveguk.wordpress.com/2013/10/09/bonfire-party-boston-baked-beans-vegan/

BOSTON BAKED BEANS

INGREDIENTS

450g / 1 lb dried haricot beans (navy beans), soaked overnight in cold water
2 onions, chopped
2tbsp dark brown sugar
2tbsp wholegrain mustard
4tbsp molasses or black treacle
450ml / 16 floz lager or bitter (alternatively use dark vegetable stock)
1 x 400g / 14oz tin chopped tomatoes
4tbsp tomato puree
4tbsp vegetarian Worcestershire sauce
1tbsp chilli powder (optional, or use less if you prefer your beans less piquant)

METHOD

Preheat oven to 150C / 300F / Gas 2
Drain the beans. Place them in a large saucepan and cover with fresh water. Boil for 10 minutes, scoop any foam off at this point. Put lid on saucepan, reduce heat and simmer for a further 45 minutes.
Drain cooked beans and place in a casserole dish. Stir in the chopped onions, mustard and lager or bitter.
Add all the other ingredients to a food processor or blender and process until well blended.
Pour the mixture into the casserole dish and stir through the beans well.
Put lid on casserole and bake for around 4 hours. Check a couple of times during cooking to ensure the beans don't dry out too much – add a little extra water if needed.

Serves 6


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 19 Nov 14 - 11:01 AM

if there's a sale on fresh mushrooms, I'll stock up and either dry the excess or saute them to freeze.

removing the stems and using them for stock is the best way I've found to get a good broth... or get dried shitakis from the oriental food stores - lowest prices around- and then use the soaking water for soup. you do need to fool around until you get the right strength broth... too overpowering if not done carefully.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Nov 14 - 05:14 AM

If I need veg stock I add a bit of dried porcini soaking water (carefully strained). Like you I'm not keen on the texture of the reconstituted fungi, but I do like the flavour they add, so, occasionally, I'll chop them up fine and add to the dish. I must admit I'd probably only do that for something with more assertive flavours, such as beef stews. Maybe a mushroom or chicken risotto. I've never had the grittiness problem with the Merchant Gourmet brand.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 19 Nov 14 - 02:57 AM

Oops. Did I mean porcini, instead of shitake? I think so. Either way, I don't like dried mushrooms. Mushroom granules however sound like they might be worth checking out.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 19 Nov 14 - 02:52 AM

Sciencegeek, I've never tried mushroom granules, they sound interesting! I know everyone raves about dried shitake for stocks, but I really don't get the appeal - I find them texturally unpleasant, very rubbery and chewy, and they're always chock full of grit when you reconstitute them too, even if you're careful about it, grit always seems to transfer from the reconstituted shroom liquid into whatever you're cooking. A bit of mushroomy flavour, rubbery stuff and grit doesn't excite me. I prefer mushroom stock cubes by Kallo (in fact Kallo cubes are the best, their Free-Range Chicken Stock Cubes are the only kind I ever use if cooking chicken which I do a few times a year like Xmas). I also keep that Mushroom Ketchup by Geo Watkins in: http://www.ocado.com/webshop/product/Geo-Watkins-Mushroom-Ketchup/37074011 Not just for veggies, use in your meat pies and puddings.

I did devilled mushrooms this weekend for breakfast, used a little oil and marge to saute the shrooms, then seasoned with worcester and cayenne, added some oat cream and reduced in the pan - either serve as a part of a larger brunch as I did or pop on nice crusty brown toast and top with parsley - they turned out a treat!


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Nov 14 - 02:20 PM

Yesterday I baked some veggies to use for lunches. I grew up in a family where we didn't add butter to everything or use various gravy or mayonnaise sauces - the green beans, the peas, whatever, were served plain, or with a little salt. I also eat squash and other things that way - no need to gild the lily. I baked an acorn squash - halved, face down on a piece of foil oiled with olive oil - and a large sweet potato. I'll take these to work with my lunch and heat them in the microwave. No butter, no salt, no nothing. I do like a sweet potato casserole at Thanksgiving, it has some orange juice and butter and spices (but no extra sugar).

A couple of years ago I completely abandoned the idea of making turkey dressing at Thanksgiving. I don't like it, it takes the bird longer to roast, and it can compromise the bird if it isn't removed promptly (spoil). So I roast a turkey that has been brined, and I oil a large baking sheet and put on various root vegetables that are seasoned a bit and turned a time or two. A bowl of that on the table is healthier and I think better tasting than any stuffing people can concoct. It's also nice to add to stock or soup if there is any left over.

That said, I have a friend who makes a wonderful asparagus casserole dish that she is always requested to bring when we do a holiday potluck. I'm sure it's full of cream of mushroom soup and canned French onion rings, etc., but it is wonderful. Once a year it's worth the fuss.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,sciencegeek
Date: 18 Nov 14 - 08:57 AM

went into Rochester this weekend to stock up on goodies... which included a visit to the China grocery store... found mushroom granules for making stock and half the price of online... so I got two because who knows when I'll see it again.

I like making noodle soup with mushrooms, dried fungus and green onions... plus my favorite oriental cabbages - nappa and Shanghai green cabbage. Kim chee hot pot is pretty good too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,Steve Shaw, Italiophile
Date: 17 Nov 14 - 06:32 PM

If my dish requires garlic and/or chilli, I fry that gently first for two or three minutes before adding the veg. The garlic is always finely sliced, never crushed, and must not go brown. I'm not religious about it, but generally I would use about two parts onions (or banana shallots, which I love) to one part celery and one part carrot. Occasionally my dish requires pancetta. If so, I would dry-fry that at the very start, then add the chilli and garlic, then, with a bit of extra olive oil, throw in the veg. I prefer to keep the veg quite chunky, so my sweat phase might take 20 or 30 minutes. I never use butter for this and I think it's a waste to use extra-virgin olive oil. A basic soffritto might not have garlic at all: much, most, maybe, traditional Italian cooking avoids using onions and garlic in the same dish - just olive oil, onions, celery and carrot. One school of thought advocates seasoning the soffritto as it's sweating. I prefer not to do this as later ingredients in the dish, such as Italian sausages or Parmesan, can add salt, not to speak of the pasta, which should have been boiled in water just as salty as the Mediterranean! I find the Schwartz crushed chilli flakes to be excellent and reliable, and a jar lasts for ages. And they're three for two in Sainsburys right now!

By the way, I do all this in my large Le Creuset sauté pan. If ISIS ever invades Cornwall, I would fight to the death in order to hang on to that pan!


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 17 Nov 14 - 06:19 AM

I tend to call my base of chopped veg mirepoix - but I do almost always include garlic along with the onion, carrots and celery, so maybe soffritto is more accurate?

Yes to dried chilli flakes too. I get them in those reasonably decent sized packets you get in the world food isle, instead of the little Shwartz glass jars.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 16 Nov 14 - 11:46 AM

Sofrito is a regular starting point for all of my bean dishes, and that base, without hot peppers or cilantro, is what goes into my pasta sauces.

I haven't done any research lately, I've worked on other projects. The first hard freeze of the season was early on Wednesday morning, so Tuesday afternoon I picked many pounds of garden produce. Lots of green tomatoes to make into relish, other things to cut up and freeze. This time of year gardeners realize that there are options to preserve the good food quality of produce that isn't ripe yet. It's part of the learning curve. I remember years ago having to toss green tomatoes because the plants got a frost on them and I didn't know how to ripen them indoors. You can't can with them if they were hit by frost - these days I make sure to give myself the most options possible. Healthy eating is the by-product.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,Steve Shaw spellchecked
Date: 16 Nov 14 - 06:36 AM

Soffritto. Leave me alone, Apple.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,Steve Shaw, gastronomically flummoxed
Date: 16 Nov 14 - 06:31 AM

Yeah, and the ten best recipes for goat's cheese. Ugh. Mind you (off-topic red alert...), I made chilli con carne last night, more or less following Henry Dimbleby's method, and it was very good indeed. I did use crushed chilli flakes instead of fresh chillies, and I added a tablespoon of sundried tomato paste (if I'm having something tomatoey, I want a bit of intensity) and a good dose of dried oregano. And home-made chicken stock. And no chilli powder. Definitely not required. Also, I made a soffrito first, frying the garlic and chilli for a minute or two before adding the veg to sweat for 20 minutes. Sine qua non. Must be the Italian in me. I don't understand adding garlic to a pan of sauce without frying it first.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 16 Nov 14 - 04:19 AM

Did you find anything of interest Stilly?

Meanwhile a Guardian baking column today featuring The British Bake Off's Ruby Tandoh on vegan bakes:

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2014/nov/15/vegan-tea-party-raspberry-cookies-chocolate-cake-ruby-tandoh

I rather fancy the chocolate fudge cake.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Nov 14 - 02:14 PM

I'll make a point of eating oatmeal each morning, and as we get into the cooler season that is an easier goal to accomplish. I also eat wild-caught salmon versus other types, and probably eat more fish than beef these days. I probably use chicken the most.

I cook with olive oil, I use a lot of avocado in conjunction with meals, but I probably need to up certain products to get more benefit from them. Cheese is part of meals, but not a major part. I do eat butter instead of margarine, but I don't eat a lot.

Research is something I'm good at, and I have a lot of resources since I work at a university library. I'll report back when I find something helpful.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 11 Nov 14 - 01:18 PM

PS: My Doctor advised me to take a dietary approach to reducing my high cholesterol levels, which meant going on a low cholesterol diet. That's what I'm doing now.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 11 Nov 14 - 01:11 PM

"Any suggestions for bringing down the cholesterol a few points? My test came back a little high - not needing medication, but I need to address the levels. A "low fat" diet is so unappealing - healthy fat with good foods is what I will try. Is there any evidence that vegetarians have better cholesterol levels?"

So far as a dietary response to elevated cholesterol is concerned, people on a vegan diet that excludes animal foods (I don't know about vegetarians, because they eat eggs, milk, cream, butter and cheese all of which have plenty of cholesterol in them) ingest no cholesterol at all.

All dietary cholesterol comes from animal foods. There is no cholesterol in any plant food. So you could think about which ways you can switch from animal rich products - especially fats - to plant based ones. Apart from fat-free dairy (I don't think that stuff is cholesterol heavy), I believe that pretty much any such switch will mean eliminating a dietary source of cholesterol.

I'll see what studies I can find to answer your question in better detail, there are bound to be some out there.


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Musket
Date: 11 Nov 14 - 01:07 PM

No evidence at all. It is more than just meat that raises it, apparently.

I am no expert, but have worked alongside many who are, (I used to "chair" a health authority, responsible for health spending for a region, including health promotion and public health.)

My cholesterol was rather high back then. A PH doctor friend suggested that if I refused to change my diet, at least use cholesterol reducing oil spread, (the main one over here is Benecol, although I have not noticed it by name in the States when I have been over.) Purely replacing butter with that, my level reduced by 2 over a couple of months. By the end of that year, it was down by 4.

I still use it and my level is even lower, although since meeting and then marrying a doctor, my diet has, against my better judgement, got far better.... Shit, cooking has become a hobby, and my ex wife would giggle at that thought!


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 11 Nov 14 - 11:20 AM

Any suggestions for bringing down the cholesterol a few points? My test came back a little high - not needing medication, but I need to address the levels. A "low fat" diet is so unappealing - healthy fat with good foods is what I will try. Is there any evidence that vegetarians have better cholesterol levels?

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: Vegan mudcatters
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 11 Nov 14 - 03:15 AM

"Veganism = nutty as a fruitcake!!"

You haven't been paying attention Bonzo, nuts are only one of the three main food groups needed for energy and protein. Nuts have their place, but beans and grains are at least as important in a meat and dairy free diet... As for fruitcake, not with all the butter and eggs I'm afraid ;-)


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