When approached by a situation that involves cooking for a vegan, even the most seasoned cooks can find difficulty in deciding how best to prepare for the main course and accompaniments that make up an evening meal. There follows a few useful guidelines to aid you in the process of devising menus for your vegan guests and relatives:
So, First Question – What Does Vegan Mean?
People often get confused between vegan and vegetarianism. While a vegetarian typically avoids all meat products, vegans avoid all fish and meat AND the by-products also. Such by-products include dairy, eggs, and even honey. Any product that comes from animals must be left out when preparing food for vegans.
Whether cooking one dinner or one dozen, fixing meals for vegans requires solid preparation. It is crucial for each meal to be full of flavor and nutritionally correct, which is often a problem for the chef who is familiar with using animal-based food products in recipes. The courses should be specced-out early in the process, considering the best way to add iron, protein, fiber, and taste to the vegan dinner.
Advanced planning is less complicated if you can discover a specialist on-line recipe collection with a collection of vegan recipes. Even then, you must verify each of the vegan recipes item by item before using them. Unfortunately, a few recipes described as vegan are not even fully vegetarian. Sadly, some individuals have very different opinions of what 'vegan' really means. Still, if you make an effort many of these vegetable recipes are very tasty and highly nutritious. A few may need particular ingredients, but once again, the internet can be a major help in tracking these down. You may actually locate online sellers of vegan food stuffs, which, as they are usually 'experts' in the vegan lifestyle, should even be able to give advice on replacement ingredients for your vegan cooking.
In vegan cooking, it is tempting to create bland dishes that seem similar to each other. You can easily avoid this mistake. In Point Of Fact, dishes can be as exciting those cooked in carnivorous meals. With the huge number of TVP style alternatives to animal based ingredients, you can use substitutions for ingredients from beef to bacon, which can also introduce plenty of flavor and variety to the beast.
Do not Make Dangerous Assumptions
As the main cook for a vegan meal, one of the most important tasks is to be utterly sure you are honoring your guests' beliefs. It would be very simple, as well as far sooner, to simply accept that all non-meat ingredients are not animal based and prepare a dinner accordingly. However, a good chef will remember to read through the essential lists of all bought items needed for the meal so you can be perfectly certain the food is OK for vegans. You will find some surprising places that meat products and their by-products crop up, for example:
o Sugar: About 50 percent of the sugar processing plants in the US use carbon from animal sources to filter the sugar. For this reason, many vegans avoid refined sugar.
o Gelatin: Many chefs do not realize that gelatin is derived from fish or animal sources.
o Soups: Some vegetable soups are have stock made from beef in their ingredients.
o Breads and Pastries: Even those that are not made with milk or eggs may contain animal-derived lard.
o Worcestershire Sauce: This ubiquitous sauce is made with anchovies, look out for vegan alternatives – they are out there
Honoring these tips, any cook can prepare a meal that is a delight for carnivores and non-meat-eaters alike, and your vegan friends will without doubt thank you for care and attention to detail.