Recently, I decided to try making some vegan recipes. I’ve made two dishes, so far, and I have a third and fourth that I’m wanting to try out. I’ve basically had positive outcomes; the recipes I’ve found are surprisingly simple to follow and don’t require weird ingredients (one ingredient did require trips to 3 different grocery stores, but that was really my own fault).
I really have nothing against vegan food. I’m a total omnivore; sometimes I like to eat meat and sometimes I have meat-free meals. The reason I haven’t really tried vegan recipes up until this point is that the recipe websites and cookbooks I consult most often aren’t vegan.
This time I didn’t actively seek out vegan recipes, I sought out the recipes of a specific chef who happens to be vegan. A number of months ago I saw an episode of “Cupcake Wars” on the Food Network which featured vegan chef Chloe Coscarelli. She won the competition, and I thought she was such a winning personality on the show, plus she’s from LA, so I checked out her website to find out more. Not only does she have vegan pastry recipes, she has vegan dinner recipes.
A few nights ago, I finally decided to make one of her recipes. I chose the vegan mac ‘n’ cheese which had gotten rave reviews in the comments section. The only ingredient that was foreign to me was nutritional yeast. I knew it was a health food product, which should have been my first clue to head to Whole Foods, and I ended up going to 3 stores to find it.
The mac ‘n’ cheese tasted delicious, but it didn’t really taste like cheese sauce. The sauce tasted more nutty. Also, the photo on the website made the sauce look really orange, similar to Kraft mac ‘n’ cheese, but mine turned out a nutty brown color. I added some turmeric to brighten the color.
So after missing the mark, somewhat, on my first recipe, I decided to try another pasta recipe. I chose the vegan pumpkin penne pasta, because we’re getting into fall. It turned out delicious, and all the ingredients were incredibly accessible. Most of them I had in my cabinet already (and you probably already have them in your kitchen as well). If you love pumpkin and nutmeg and sage, you’ll love this recipe. Don’t think about it being vegan, just think about the delicious fall flavors.
I’m anxious to try the vegan pad thai and vegan avocado pesto recipes. I have no intention of ever actually becoming a vegan, but I like experimenting with different cooking styles; it helps me develop my skills and gain a better understanding of cooking methods.