I am a long-time vegetarian who is having some trouble completely committing to becoming vegan.. I blame my husband! :) (kidding!)
However, because I am hoping to make the transition permanent sometime within the next year, are there any "Staple Recipes" you could recommend for me? Please keep in mind that my husband is NOT a vegetarian and has no intention of becoming vegan. - It proves to be hard when I'm cooking, but he is completely find with eating whatever I make...
I just want to find things that are good for making the transition, or incorporating vegan items more and more, etc, so that the more I make, the less of a restriction it feels on both he and I - gosh I hope I'm making sense!!
Hey Jill. I've been vegetarian three years this Thanksgiving and have been vegan for the last year. The transition for me was rather difficult because my fiancee and family are hardcore carnivores and in a way mock my lifestyle. However, I love to cook and have read many cookbooks, learning ways to make things feel more "meaty" for those people in my life. A great book I found and my fiance loves is, Vegan Cooking For Carnivores. They have a lot of transition type recipes in there.--- A lot of the stuff is "familiar" food, while being vegan. I also really honestly love Alicia book, because the recipes are simple.
Another thing I found with vegan cooking is to pack flavor into everything. Experiment with spices. --- Don't be afraid and if it comes out terrible, crack open a can of vegan soup and try again tomorrow.
I don't know how you feel on soy and fake meats, but there are a lot of vegan friendly "meats" out there. I personally try to avoid these items because fake meats kinda freak me out, lol. However they are a great transition, because it is mocking something familiar.
Lastly the thing I recommend the most is eating whole filling foods. The best way to build a plate and be satisfied is to have a starch, protein, and vegetable. --- As you probably already know from being a vegetarian, quinoa is an incredible food that is a perfect protein. It has all 8 amino acids you need. Not only is this nutritious but its filling.
Here is a simple recipe I made for connivence and the carnivores in my life seem to enjoy it and its filling.
A simple ratatouille over barley
-1 yellow squash
-1 red pepper
- 1/2 red onion
-2 cloves garlic
- 1 bag of spinach
- pinch of salt
- pinch of pepper
- pinch of paprika
- dash of red pepper seeds
- 2 basil leaves
- oil of your choice
Cook barley and keep aside. ( a trick with barely, soak over night and your cook time will be fifteen minutes as opposed to 45)
Sautee your onions till translucent, add garlic in, then add ingredients according to thickness.- thickest veggies go in first and then thinnest-- to make cooking time even. ( however don't add your spinach till the end.) Add your spices, except for basil leaves. Saute till soft, add spinach, cook down, making sure its still vibrant green, add your basil leaves, throw in your barley and serve.--- You can also add tomatoes in at the end. ( I'm not a big fan of tomatoes, but it does give a nice juice to it.) --- Serve with a salad with some nuts and seeds in it.
I hope this helped