So I am starting to get more and more people asking me for vegan recipes. You guys are watching great documentaries like Cowspiracy and Racing Extinction and making the choice to save yourself, the animals and this planet. But it's not always easy in the beginning. I have friends who are consciously not eating meat but have no idea what to eat anymore. They tell me they are starving. But this does not have to be the case.
There are so many great options a vegan can eat. I don't starve and not only am I vegan. I'm gluten free and have a crazy list of random veggies I can't eat due to allergies.
Tonight's Dinner: Veggie Stir-Fry
So I'm going to try and make this as simple as possible. This is a very general, easy stir-fry I make new and exciting versions of all the time. I rarely make the exact same thing twice. I'll tell you what I made tonight and give you some great options of alternative things you can add.
Start with a nice size pan. Add a great olive oil and coat the pan. Olive oil is really good for you. So don't be afraid of using whatever you want of this. We're not deep-frying though. So just do a good bottom coat.
Tonight I chopped up a bunch of organic broccoli, onions and fresh garlic. I like to taste them, so my pieces weren't even super small. Just do an over-sized chop. (As a general rule...I buy everything organic when it doesn't have an outer layer of skin. But, if there's a peel to it, like a banana or avocado, then don't waste your money.)
Throw the veggies in a hot pan and cover them for a bit. This will allow the broccoli to soften and start to brown the onions. Stir it occasionally until the broccoli starts to seem soft. Some great additions to this are mushrooms, red peppers and even brussel sprouts. Put whatever veggies you want in at this point.
Next, uncover and keep cooking. This will start to get everything brown and make it a tad crunchy. We don't want anything mushy here.
Now you can start to play. I like to add a little apple cider vinegar, Himalayan sea salt (this is very good for you by the way), a touch of black pepper, a little organic turmeric (I order mine from the Bulk Herb Store), a great thick balsamic vinegar (my favorite is Bistro Blends-I stock up on it-it's not cheap but I taste a huge difference), almonds (I love Marcona almonds) or pine nuts or even walnuts...and anything else your heart desires. Spinach and/or kale are great healthy additions here too!
Keep stirring now and then. But let it sit in one place long enough to start getting nice and brown here and there.
At the end I added something tonight I haven't tried before-a bit of vegan cheese. I like to use the Daiya Shredded Cheddar. I just added a litte. It gave it a gooey consistency and just made it a tad thicker. In the past, when I wanted more of a thick sauce in the dish, I would add a great coconut milk to it. I order mine by the case from Import Foods-Chaokoh brand. I like theirs the best because there are no added ingredients like in our grocery stores here in the US. It's just coconut. I use this for everything!
Okay-it should be about done by now. Let's scoop it all into a plate and garnish. If it seems dry, add more balsamic on top. If it needs more Himalayan sea salt, go for it.
This is a great time to add half of an avocado cut up on top, maybe some tomato, raw red onions or whatever you like that's raw. Now you can sprinkle some chia seeds, nutritional yeast (this is nothing like rising yeast-it's extremely high in vitamin B and has a bit of a cheesy flavor to it,) and goji berries. Even drizzle a little raw coconut oil on top, or maybe flax seed oil.
And, voilà! You have an amazing, superfood, super charged dinner that's easy, healthy, vegan and filling!! If you need something heartier or to feed more mouths, just grab some organic quinoa (I like to make it with a low sodium vegetable broth instead of water) and make that on the side just like you would rice. You can then put your stir-fry right on top of the quinoa on your plate. And if you STILL need more, make a salad. I'll cover salads another time. But in general-don't add traditional dressing. Either use the same balsamic vinegar you used for the stir-fry, lemon juice or make your own with olive oil, garlic, sea salt and lemon.
I linked to a lot of the products I use and exactly where I buy them from. It's so super easy and I do different versions of this all the time. Don't be afraid to play and just keep adding stuff and tasting it until you like it. That's exactly what I do. I just add and cook and play until it's amazing!!! Then I serve it with with water with a splash of the apple cider vinegar in it (I drink this all day, every day anyway), or yes, you can do a glass of red wine if you like.
A good rule of thumb when buying products is to get in the habit of buying things in a glass container, like the oils and vinegars. Then recycle the glass!
Please let me know what you think...and most of all...don't starve! The planet gave us so many great products straight from nature. These are the things we should be eating. These are what will fill us up the most, give us the protein and vitamins we need and keep us safe from human made chemicals and the diseases that are a result of all that junk out there.
And the best way to shop? There are two ways. Either go straight to Lucky Vitamin.com and shop away (as linked above)....or go onto GoodShop and name Animal Avengers as your charity of choice. Then, go to Vitacost and shop on there. Both are great stores with (usually) the least expensive prices on everything! And there are tons of discount coupons online and at GoodShop AND 3% of your purchase will go back to Animal Avengers if you shop at Vitacost through GoodShop. You can't go wrong with all of that either way!!
You are now armed and dangerous with lots of great info, tons of links to explore and a recipe you can play with for a long time. I will try to keep posting some of the yummy things I eat all the time. Don't get discouraged. it all gets easier, I promise.
Thank you for saving the planet, the animals and most of all...yourself!!
Lots of love always...Shannon