Friday, 8 November 2013

Vegan eh?!

11:06:00 Posted by Louise Barklam , , , 3 comments

Crikey!  Since I was asked to start writing on this blog, I can truly say that I’ve been challenged by some of the themes.

Ok.  I am NOT a Vegan.   I do however admire anyone who is able to follow this lifestyle choice.   It takes real commitment!  Doing a little research, you realise just how little there really is in a Supermarket that they can eat.  The vast majority of our Food and other items these days contain ingredients that we may not realise are actually there, like gelatin to bind. It can be found in food, pharmaceuticals, and cosmetics.  It is derived from boiling various by-products of animals such as bones, tendons, ligaments and sometimes skin.   The Vegan alternative to gelatin is Agar Agar (derived from Seaweed apparently) just in case you needed to know.

 I found it quite fascinating how much I didn’t know about the food we eat.  I’ll always be a carnivore, but one perhaps that is a little more aware of what is in her food.

 Should anyone ever wish to invite me to a Vegan Dinner Party, I have had a mooch at some recipes and have found the following one to be the most appealing.  Simple tastes, but please omit the Courgette.  Can’t stand it, yuck!

Vegetarian casserole
By Caroline Hire

Cooking time
Prep: 10 mins Cook: 40 mins
Skill level
Serves 4

A Mediterranean one-pot stew with peppers, courgettes, lentils, sweet smoked paprika and thyme.

Flavour tip
This casserole is best if made the day before to allow the flavours to develop.

·         1 tbsp olive or rapeseed oil
·         1 onion, finely chopped
·         3 garlic cloves, sliced
·         1 tsp smoked paprika
·         ½ tsp cumin
·         1 tbsp dried thyme
·         3 medium carrots, sliced (about 200g)
·         2 medium sticks celery, finely sliced (about 120g)
·         1 red pepper, chopped
·         1 yellow pepper, chopped
·         2 x 400g tins tomatoes or peeled cherry tomatoes
·         250ml vegetable stock cube
·         2 courgettes, sliced thickly (about 300g)
·         2 sprigs fresh thyme
·         250g cooked lentils (we used Merchant Gourmet ready-to-eat Puy lentils)

1.       Heat the oil in a large, heavy-based pan. Add the onions and cook gently for 5 – 10 mins until softened.
2.       Add the garlic, spices, dried thyme, carrots, celery and peppers and cook for 5 minutes.
3.       Add the tomatoes, stock, courgettes and fresh thyme and cook for 20 - 25 minutes.
4.       Take out the thyme sprigs. Stir in the lentils and bring back to a simmer. Serve with wild and white basmati rice, mash or quinoa.

That’ll do nicely, thanks.  Mmmmmmmmm. 

Disclaimer - If the above recipe should incorporate anything that is not suitable for Vegans, firstly I wholeheartedly apologise, and secondly it may be worth logging on to the site to complain.  That’s where I got it from as it was listed under their Vegan Category.


Thanks for reading. ;-)




Janine Ashbless said...

The secret to courgettes is NEVER BOIL THEM IN A STEW. They are just slimy and bland.

Cut them thin and grill or roast them (in oil) until they are browning and start to crisp. I promise you, there is a complete taste transformation. I too used to despise courgettes, but now I love them!


Louise Barklam said...

I'll have to remember that one. Thank you!

Ashley R Lister said...

Louise - thanks for the recipe.
Janine - thanks for the tip re courgettes.

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