world vegan day – a tribute
[5 ingredients]

roast cauliflower with saffron & pinenuts spanish saffron (left) kashmiri saffron (right)

Recently I found out that I missed World Vegan Day. It was on the 1st November and I’m a little disappointed I didn’t get to celebrate because I really admire anyone who is able to choose a life without bacon. Those that choose to be meat-free for the betterment of our environment, for animal rights reasons, or because they feel healthier – I take my hat off to you all.

You see the truth is I love my cheese and pork products, not to mention icecream too much. While I really support the idea behind veganism, I mean I LOVE my veggies too, I wouldn’t be able to make that pledge. 5 ingredients, absolutely. Vegan, I’m afraid I’m not that strong a woman.

Back in May, my Irishman and I went vegetarian for a month. It was partly because we wanted to get more vegetables in our diet but mostly just to see how the other half lived. And the thing that I didn’t blog about was how much I struggled. After I embraced tofu and getting enough iron, I really enjoyed the challenge of choosing a vegetarian menu every day, even when we were eating out.

But I always had this feeling at the back of my mind. A nagging little thought going, when is this going to be over? When can I have some chorizo? Yes people, I did look at my calendar and count days on a number of occasions. It wasn’t all smooth sailing for me.

Which is why I want to raise a virtual toast of respect to all the vegans out there. ‘Cheers guys.’

The good news is, that November is actually World Vegan Month. And the Vegan Society has a pledge system going for non-vegans who would like to commit to being vegan for a week, a fortnight or even a month. If that’s something that might interest you the details are over here.

And for some inspiration for budding vegans or even omnivores like me, who would like to eat more vegan meals, here are a few vegan recipes that have appeared on stonesoup in the last 6 months:

recent stonesoup vegan recipes

- couscous & broccolini salad

- cabbage & crispy noodle salad

- japanese salads

- hummus

- homemade falaffels

- quinoa tabbouleh

- spiced chickpeas with cauliflower

- scrambled tofu with tomatoes & peppers

- minimalist dahl

- chilli spiced tofu with hummus

- rustic homemade sourdough

- hearty red lentil stew

- carrot ribbon salad with pesto dressing & cashews

- sicilan nut pesto

- basic vegetable stock

- simple soba noodle soup

- babaganoush

- super simple carrot soup

- broccoli soup

- roast avocado & couscous salad

- homemade peanut butter

- cold oil potato chips

- stewed apples as good as nannas

- rice & lentils

- warm chickpea salad with rosemary & garlic

roast cauliflower with saffron & pinenuts
[5 ingredients]
roast cauliflower with saffron & pinenuts

serves 1

Inspired by the wonderful Moro Cookbook by Sam & Sam Clarke. The Clarkes boil their cauli but I much prefer to take the extra time and roast mine.

This makes a wonderful vegan dinner all on its own but I’ve also had it as a side dish to a curry and it worked well as a supporting act too.

For something more substantial, you could toss in a drained tin of chickpeas when you add the pinenuts.

1/2 cauliflower, chopped into tiny trees, leaves reserved
10 strands saffron, soaked in 2 tablespoons boiling water
small handful pinenuts
small handful raisins, soaked in 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1. Preheat oven to 200C (400F).

2. Place cauliflower and leaves in a baking dish and drizzle with olive oil. Bake for 20 minutes, or until starting to soften and brown at the edges.

3. Add saffron and the soaking water and pinenuts and toss to bathe the cauliflower in golden loviness. Bake for another 5 minutes, or until cauli is tender and the pinenuts are roasted.

4. Toss in raisins and vinegar. Season well and serve warm.

roast cauliflower with saffron & pinenuts

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This goes without saying, but the only way Stonesoup reaches more people is if you share it, Tweet it, Like it on Facebook, link to me from your blog, and email it to your friends. THANKYOU. I really appreciate your help spreading the word about 5 ingredients.

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{ 20 comments }

Natalia November 4, 2010 at 8:09 pm

As a vegan, I always get excited when excellent recipe sites like this give out vegan options that are easy and delicious! And don’t be too hard on yourself – baby steps and all that :)

jules November 4, 2010 at 9:40 pm

thanks natalia,
I don’t think I’m even up to baby steps though

Wei-Wei November 4, 2010 at 10:41 pm

I absolutely agree with you – I agree with the cause and I highly admire vegans, but I don’t think I’d be able to do it in a country where chicken is considered a vegetarian ingredient… and a garnish of ground beef is added to sauteed vegetables. :P Maybe when I’m in college…

Matt Stone November 4, 2010 at 11:09 pm

I strongly disagree that vegans should be respected. That’s like respecting someone who straps a bomb to themselves for their courage and dedication to what they believe in – what they believe in is based upon a delusion about morality, and an even greater delusion when it comes to health – as there is no diet that is more destructive and physically crippling long-term than a vegan diet. I’m working with a former vegan right now that just got out of the hospital and hopes to have her children back soon, who were taken away months ago because she was no longer able to care for them due to her extreme vegan-induced health problems incurred in the name of health and morality.

http://180degreehealth.blogspot.com/2007/05/when-plants-fight-back.html

Karen Call December 16, 2012 at 10:52 pm

Matt,

Knowing one person who didn’t eat a HEALTHY Vegan diet is not the same as calling all Vegans suicide bombers. I recommend adding me to your facebook page if you have one. I discuss all the moral, health, and environmental reasons for being Vegan. My Vegan husband, daughter and I are very healthy, I have remineralized my teeth on a raw Vegan diet (also by cutting out all glycerin toothpastes which coat the teeth and prevent saliva access for remineralization–for the past year, I’ve just used a 50/50 baking soda and salt combo), my skin cleared up after cutting out cow’s breast secretions and table sugar, I can breathe through my nose now (a problem I have had my whole life and used to think just ran in the family, that we just had small nasal passages), I used to have arthritic symptoms (my whole family has had arthritis problems. On a Vegan diet? Completely gone.), my BMI is at 18.4% (athlete range), I can workout for 2-3 hours at a time, I taught cardiovascular strength aerobics for 4 years. Three months after giving birth, I ran a 5k with my company without training for it and placed 4th in my division, and I am currently 3 months pregnant with our 2nd Vegan baby. I eat cruelty-free and am loving it! (Before I was Vegan this past year, I was Vegetarian for ~6 years prior.). My teeth continued to develop cavities on a primarily cooked foods, Lacto-Ovo Vegeterian diet (this is coming from someone who was told as a child that I would have weakened enamel for life by multiple dentists due to antibiotics given to me as a child when I was omni)–mostly Raw, 100% Vegan has given me the best health of my life, the most energy, the whitest, strongest teeth without the use of whiteners due to nutrient density of the teeth now, the most positive, peaceful feelings, and I would never change it for the world.

Here’s my facebook page if you’re interested in the articles, research, my experiences, and the experiences and before and after photos of hundreds of Vegan friends and mentors. (Did I mention I used to be 165 lb. at 5’6.5″ pre-Vegetarian with easily added weight while working out continuously without results, and am now 128 lb. stable? Well, 129 at three months pregnant now.). Best regards,

Karen P. Call

Rachel November 5, 2010 at 2:56 am

I might be vegan if it’s weren’t for ice cream and eggs. I think it’s nice to realize that there’s a lot of really good food out there that’s already vegan! Your list of recipes are great examples.
The roasted cauliflower sounds delicious!

et November 5, 2010 at 3:13 am

I’ve been a vegetarian for over 30 years. It’s been easy for me – I just decided that certain things are “not food”. Now if I could only do the same with sweets…

Autumn November 5, 2010 at 3:29 am

Matt Stone is a little heavy handed but I have to say that I agree. Veganism is neither healthy or pleasurable.

Erin S. November 5, 2010 at 5:05 am

The cauliflower & saffron looks great, I will be trying it as I love both. Roasting is such a magical process for vegetables, bringing out the best in them. Have saffron and never quite know what to do with it. Thanks for showing the way.

I am with you on the bacon. A little bacon is a lovely thing. I have been eating meatless on Mondays for about a year now, and sometimes on Tuesday as well. Like you say, I don’t want to go vegan for the rest of my life. Moderation really is the key. Balance is something to enjoy in all aspects of our lives, not just food.

Carla November 5, 2010 at 11:41 am

whoa. I love you!

(ps as a trained chef and avid vegan cook… I was THRILLED to see you too cook only with a serrated edge knife and a cooks knife – my kitchen is totally minimalist due to years of poverty… but you can get by!)

Erin November 5, 2010 at 1:43 pm

Two of my friends who I greatly admire for their intelligence and common sense are both vegetarian. And it does make me wonder.

While driving the other day I passed a cattle truck. The cows looked so sad. Or was I just imagining that they were?

I don’t think eating animals and their products is inherently wrong, but I do believe that the way most of our food-producing animals are treated is awful. All of us meat eaters need to chose our animal products more wisely.

I’ve just ordered Jonathan Safran Foer’s “Eating Animals”. It’s supposed to be really good. Peter Singer’s “The Ethics of What We Eat” is a great read for anyone interested in where their food comes from.

Abigail @ Good to Think and Eat November 8, 2010 at 12:41 pm

Oh no I missed vegan day! I think to make up for it I will make the next week vegan week. I want to be so thoughtful about my meat and dairy consumption.

goodtothinkandeat.blogspot.com

Jane O'Brien November 8, 2010 at 1:52 pm

Thanks for this recipe Clance – I am heading out to pick my Cauli’s to roast today
Trust it is all going well for you – your blogg is amazing – I have major blogg jealously – lots of love your uni pal – Jane x

Claudia November 10, 2010 at 3:47 pm

I was just diagnosed as diabetic, so I’m doing my best to embrace a vegan diet, one that’s low in fat with the focus on foods with a low glycemic index (as per Neal Barnard’s book on reversing diabetes). OMG.

Vegan, no problem. Low-fat, okay I can handle that. Low GI, way more challenging. All three, whoa.

Thanks for the recipes, it all helps :-)

Quay Po Cooks November 10, 2010 at 9:54 pm

I love vegetarian food but I am not a vegan. this recipes sound great!

Joseph November 28, 2010 at 12:26 pm

Your love for cheese & bacon hasn’t stopped you from making wonderful totally plant based recipes at all!

jules November 30, 2010 at 10:17 pm

hey jane
very jealous of your caulis! lovely to hear from you.

claudia
wow that sounds like a tough gig. good luck

joseph
i love my veggies just as much – I’m a true omnivore ;) Actually if I had to choose between bacon and salad leaves, salad would win.

jody April 26, 2013 at 5:51 am

ok, looks like the saffron is going to meet some cauliflower!

Brooke May 1, 2013 at 9:11 pm

Made this cauli dish tonight. We really liked it but next time want to use your No.1 vinegar, sherry vinegar, instead. The red wine vinegar was a little overpowering.

jody May 11, 2013 at 8:03 am

ok, my experiment is over – that was saffron’s second chance and i just don’t get it – which is fine because mine is now used up and i never have to pay a lot for it again! the cauliflower & chickpeas were good still, tho!

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