Going decadently, sensually, joyously, simply vegan
Today I am a vegan … at least for the next 2 weeks.
My experiences with vegans are too many seem unhappy, even puritanical … all that mean brown rice and uninteresting food, I think.
I know any vegan reading this is the exception, as jolly as Santa swilling Coca Cola … or Pepsi on vacation.
However, my own encounters of the vegan kind … restaurants and people … have been 75% on the downer side.
I am jazzed to be going vegan. I want to hear from people who are jazzed to be vegans and what they eat to make them happy.
I’m not much of a cook, but I’ve always been a great shopper. So I’ll be relying mainly on exceptional produce, grains and legumes prepared simply.
I have red rice, green rice, forbidden rice, wild rice and Jasmine rice. I have about a dozen types of heirloom beans.
Teas include smokey lapsang souchong, earthy 20 year puer, floral charcoal fire oolong, intense blood orange and one of those jasmine teas that unfolds into a flower when steeped. There is a lot of beauty and sensuality in tea. Of course, I have coffee from my favorite local roasters.
The menu for day one includes
- Oatmeal with Vietnamese cinnamon, yellow aurora apple and pecans
- Coffee with soymilk (also have rice milk, almond milk and oatmeal milk)
- Artisan English muffin with cashew butter
- Spiced Scarlet and Bartlett pears
- Persimmons, pomegranates and various types of grapes
- Vinaigrette with vintage 2006 plantano vinegar
- Green salad with edible flowers, cucumbers, multi-colored heirloom tomatoes, gypsy peppers, black olives, beets, jicama, mushrooms, red onion and yellow Indian woman heirloom beans. A riot of color seems cheerful
Health is my reason. After a year of living in Guatemala and pigging out on junk food while in tempory living conditions when we came back, it is time to re-acquaint myself with my doctor. I am trying to bring any bad test numbers I might have down before seeing the medico.
My last encounter with a vegan was in Antigua while touring a coffee farm. He was a dour person who told me he found a restaurant that would serve him brown rice and plain beans. He refused to listen to some very good restaurants serving vegan chow and the glorious bounty of tropical fruit steps away at the market. He wanted rice and beans. Period. Seemed like a waste. Why travel if not exploring what is different than at home.
I don’t think being vegan needs to be uninteresting.
Tell me what makes you a vivacious vegan.
In two weeks I’ll tell you if I’m still my usual, happy, sunny self … ok, I’m acually somewhat of a cranky carnivore curmudgeon.
I'm a vegetarian but I often make meals and later realize they're vegan. A great cookbook- REALLY!- is Appetite for Reduction. The Catalan Couscous Salad alone is worth the cost of the book. I see the person below has mentioned romesco sauce- this is used as dressing for the salad! I also make tons of vegan soups in the winter- I made a pot earlier today with butternut squash, carrots, apples, red curry paste, red lentils and coconut milk. I made a great vegan version of a 101 Cookbooks recipe last week- I made my own southwest pesto (with cilantro, pumpkin seeds, chipotle pepper and no cheese) to change the flavour profile a bit. http://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/...
I am not vegan, but some of my friends are, and I enjoy cooking meals for and with them. One thing that they appreciate is having fantastic condiments to make meals more enjoyable. Two particular favorites are:
Toum- rendolent with garlic (if raw garlic seems to intense, just blanch garlic for a few minutes....or use roasted garlic)- http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/toum/detail.aspx
I love to dip steamed or roasted vegetables in this, or dollop some next to some parsley-rich tabbouleh. This tabbloueh recipe is my favorite: http://nutritionunplugged.com/2009/04/authentic-lebanese-tabbouleh-recipe/ As a nice, more protein-rich adaptation, sometimes I'll mix in some cooked quinoa (or use all quinoa instead of bulgur....but quinoa must be simmered and then steeped in lemon juice, not just soaked like bulgur.)
Romesco sauce- this is one of my favorite recipes: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...
Again, goes well with vegetables...a pretty salad involves tossing chickpeas and steamed green beans with Romesco.
Best wishes on your vegan journey!