Boy are we enjoying our veganism this round…and this is a 4th tour, maybe 5th but who’s counting? PETA?
It helps to learn some dishes, the biggest tip I can give is learn how to remake your favorites and really experiment with alternatives. Daiya cheeses have come a looonnng way.
Some foods we enjoy are Quorn products. They have a Turk’y roast that tastes pretty darn good. You slice it up, cook it, either eat with dinner, add gravy, or later for sandwiches. Tofurkey is another one that can be found with stuffing and I love slicing it up and cooking in my cast iron pans. Not that you would need a cast iron pan for flavor nor is it a vegan “thing” to cook in cast iron. Sophie’s Kitchen has crab cakes made out of some root and sea weed and it is DELICIOUS! We fry those with just a little oil. I know roots and twigs aren’t selling words but trust me. We love to eat and the boys and I are picky, picky, and picky. We can eat the junk but we do prefer food that is fresh, clean, and loaded with flavor.
Daiya cheese is really good now and melts! With some help from the old microwave of course. I stored my microwave to make room in my small 1941 kitchen and to be really granola hippy but today we had grilled cheese sandwiches and I was made aware that this cheese needs just a little zap to really melt. Maybe not but I didn’t feel like slow cooking a grilled cheese.
We are trying Daiya provolone and smoky gouda and it passed the kid and mom test. I have also found GoVeggie cheese slices at FoodMaxx years ago and it was great for grilled cheese as well. As for eating these cheeses cold…I wouldn’t do it.
You can get organic, Non-GMO, and vegan substitutes at box stores all over now. It’s great! FoodMaxx, Winco, Costco. And all the other stores such as Safeway, Raley’s…they are all getting on board and the vegan and organic sections just keep growing.
Raw snacks are fabulous for getting your sweets and loading up on nutrition. LARABARs, raw flavored nuts…
These wonderful macaroons will get you over your love of milk chocolate real quick. There other vegan chocolates out there but I haven’t tried them yet. For you coffee and creamer people, I have found that Wildwood plain soy creamer is pretty good with some coconut sugar or honey. It’s definitely a different taste if you are a cow cream and white sugar lover but you will grow to like it better…in time, and after a mood swing or two.
l love going to Whole Foods and find that they are so much more affordable than 10 years ago. Their prices have gone down some 25% due to all the other stores now competing with the organics and vegan fair. Now Amazon has bought them out and, although I have some concerns, it will probably make it all the more affordable. Health Food Stores, in general, are going to have more alternatives and healthy substitutes.
On Amazon, you can find a cook book to suit your personality. Here are some, please excuse the language of the first one, I had to post because it is so popular and has some good stuff in here.
Look how hip and cool you can now be as a vegan! I find recipes online because I want to wait a bit. I go crazy and buy all these cook books only to have them look interesting on a kitchen shelf. There are so many vegan blogs and free recipes for foods we love.
We already do vegan pizza and burgers, fries, burritos, grilled cheese, pasta dishes, salads, curry lentil soups, and more.
I love the potato bread burger buns and I use Boca or Amy’s burgers then I put all sorts of sauces, pickles, lettuce, red onions, tomatoes, and it is so yummy and filling.
Amy’s has vegan frozen food that is beyond scrumptious for the worker bee that just wants to nuke lunch at the office.
There are frozen pizzas.
Go play and have fun with it and don’t stress about being perfect. We don’t even mention being vegan when we go to someone’s house. We have embarrassed ourselves too often with waving our vegan flag to only be Paleo the next week. We are silent this time. Maybe in a year, we will say something. If they serve meat we do eat it and thank them because we aren’t fanatical about it. Yet. Most dinners and parties will have enough items to eat and skip the meat. If we really crave a baked chicken we may have it but this time I’m going to make sure there is plenty of balance in our diet, proteins, and substitutes to meet those cravings.
It is important to do some learning about being balanced so you don’t become deficient. With any diet, you can become deficient. With vegan, it could be with vitamins D and B12 so take supplements. Eat a ton of veggies of every color of the rainbow and fruit too. Try new veggies and fruit weekly. If you mix beans and rice it makes a complete protein and grain bread and peanut butter also make a complete protein. Nuts, brown rice, legumes (fancy for bean) are excellent for keeping meat cravings away and giving you great nutrition.
Don’t become a junk food vegan or you will look and feel like poo very quickly. If you want junk food go to the Whole Foods or a health food store and find raw snacks. You will be surprised at how good they are and they are mostly made from nuts, coconut, dates, and avocado.
Oh, and nutritional yeast! What a great thing to have in the kitchen. Use it on salads, popcorn, in sauces with cashews to substitute cheese. It also has B12 and a lot of other great vitamins.
Things to have in your pantry for Vegan and Raw:
- Cashews, almonds, raisins, cranberries.
- nutritional yeast, sea salt, white pepper and anything else that sounds fun. Flax seed meal.
- veggie burgers, GoVeggie or Daiya cheese.
- Almond milk or soy, cashew, rice milks. Creamers too.
- Whole grains, breads, brown rice, quinoa, beans, black and pinto, brown rice pasta.
- Lot’s of yummy and healthy cereals, both hot and cold.
- raw veggies, salads, fruit for snacking.
- Vegan dressings and dips like hummus.
- Raw snacks.
I’m missing many things so I’ll blog about it later. Stock up on frozen and fresh stuff. Just have fun and try it all. Some foods will be awful and you’ll be pissed you spent the funds, other foods will be so amazingly delicious you will think, “maybe I can do this forever!”
I’m still sticking with our free range eggs stamped humane and I would definitely eat eggs from our own chickens if we had them. However, as my kitchen and body get cleaner and the freshness of cilantro and tomatoes fill the air, I’m finding eggs to be sort of a gross smell. I cracked an egg the other day and it got everywhere. I didn’t know this and kept smelling this raw egg all day and I thought that maybe I could get rid of this yolk altogether. “Egg smell, you disgust me!”
I will end this page with some inspiring reports. I’m losing weight fast again and the boys are getting healthy again. My husband looked 9 months pregnant and now he only looks 6 months. It’s been a short time. We are eating more veggies and fruit than ever. I suppose that happens when that is the only thing on the menu.
The other day we had avocado on grainy, nutty bread and melon for breakfast. We traveled to Nevada City to find the forest trails and I packed peaches, bananas, and apples along with peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, all organic, no sugar. For dinner, we had green beans with pasta and Turk’y. Most days we have green juices and green smoothies with lots of greens. A salad is almost daily.
I learned a great morning cereal mix from Engine 2’s vegan documentary on Netflix. I take several healthy cereals and mix them along with rolled oats, flax seed meal, bananas, strawberries, and blueberries. Talk about filling!
Engine2diet.com is another great resource for intensely healthy food.