December 11, 2014
Undertaking a vegan lifestyle can seem so daunting at first but it actually is quite simple. Sometimes having a checklist like the one below can really make you feel at ease. So, follow our easy-peasy list to get on your way to become a lean mean vegan machine!
- Read through our Vegan 101 section to become familiar with the benefits and what a vegan actually is.
- Make the swaps! Swap your dairy for soy milk, almond milk or other plant based milk. Swap your meat for beans, legumes, tofu, mushrooms or commercial meat alternatives. Swap your eggs in your baking with the egg alternatives listed in our vegan 1o1 section. Swap your normal chocolate for dairy free chocolate or for dark chocolate which is commonly vegan.
- Plan your meals out for the week. Have a look through our recipes or through magazines, decide which meals you will be making, write a grocery list and go grocery shopping. Then every week, add one new recipe to your shopping list. This will really improve your recipe repertoire and will really increase your confidence with vegan cooking. It is so much easier than you think. Trust me! Or, as an alternative, make all of your normal meals but make the swaps listed in step 2. For example, make your famous spaghetti bolognese but add lentils and mushrooms instead of beef.
- Start educating yourself. Read some studies such as The China Study to inform yourself on why a vegan lifestyle is so beneficial. This will make you feel better about your choice and will also make you feel confident when others ask why you are vegan etc...
- Search for vegan restaurants near you! Have a look for some vegan cafes, takeaways and restaurants near you. It is so much fun to eat out and try lots of vegan deliciousness.
- Follow some of your favourite vegan blogs and websites! This will keep you up to date with all of the latest vegan news and products etc...
- Have fun! Buy some vegan cook books and start cooking. Make vegan cupcakes for friends and family. Chat to others on vegan forums. Start loving your choice and have fun!
Don't forget, every person undertakes a vegan lifestyle at their own pace. It doesn't matter if it takes you 1 day or 1 year. Just relax and enjoy the transition!
In early 2010 Jerome and I decided to become a lovely vegetarian couple. It wasn't the large amount of triple cheeseburgers I was eating or the fact that I was constantly tired, lethargic, nauseous and catching colds but that my eyes were opened to what has been hidden behind the smiley egg cartons and happy dairy cow commercials. I watched one documentary after another which explicitly showed what happens behind closed doors and why the egg industry, dairy industry and meat industry were so so horrible. I felt completely distraught. It took me a good couple of days to come to terms with what was happening in the world and I really understood why Paul McCartney said "If slaughterhouses had glass walls, everyone would be vegetarian" because it truly was horrific. However, it wasn't the meat industry that got me... it was the constant torture of cows and their calves in the milk industry and chickens and their chicks in the egg industry. I felt not only sad but angry that I wasn't informed of what was happening. I felt that as a consumer, I should be informed about what we were buying and what types of processes and ethics we were supporting! I had no idea that my money was going towards such an indescribable cruelty.
From this point on, I started reading about the health benefits of the vegan lifestyle. The cruelty was what really made us become vegan in the first place but the health benefits were such a perk! I loved reading more and more about how my body was improving and this gave me such an overwhelming sense of relief and comfort to know that I was doing good for myself, the environment and for animal welfare.
One month after being vegetarian we became vegan. Not only because I suddenly felt like a superhero but because I just felt better and strangely, felt like I had a purpose. After becoming vegan I noticed a lot of changes in my body. I was able to run faster and longer on my daily jog, I could see better (this sounds weird but my vision actually improved), my hair become thicker and shinier, my nails became stronger, I wasn't catching colds or flus and basically, I was an all round healthy vegan lady... plus, I was making such incredible food which made Jerome very happy.
This is when we started Veggieful. Jerome and I were sitting in another boring Accounting lecture when I was asked again by friend if I could share one of my vegan recipes. It was getting hard to keep sending them out to separate individuals so I decided to start a blog for a communal sharing point. I still remember sitting in the lecture room, obviously not listening to what I should have been listening to, and doodling different blog names on my note pad. Jerome and I were so excited to start a little vegan project together and loved the name 'Veggieful'. From that moment onwards, Veggieful became such a huge part of our lives. We never knew what was yet to come!
On January 5th 2014, we welcomed our lovely little vegan bundle of joy, Mia. Jerome and I had been vegan for four years and were so excited to bring up a little vegan baby! You can read more about her and our pregnancy in our vegan baby section.
All in all, our vegan lifestyle started with a passion and this passion is still up and running. I love my little vegan family and am so glad that Veggieful and all of our lovely Veggieful followers are part of our lives. Big hugs to you all and good luck with your own vegan journeys ^-^
December 6, 2014
Who ever said that being vegan was hard? It is soooo easy, soooo delicious and sooooo satisfying... let alone, so good for your body too! This is a great alternative to the classic non-vegan egg nog as it is creamy, slightly sweet, decadent and spicy. Plus, you can add a dash of alcohol and be guilt-free as it Christmas time! Fun fun fun. Anywho, I hope this makes your vegan Christmas even more Christmassy! Enjoy :)
1 cup plant milk (such as Soy Milky Lite)
1 cup coconut cream
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 teaspoon cinnamon
big pinch nutmeg
dash vanilla extract
rum or brandy (to taste)
- In a saucepan on medium heat, add all ingredients except for the alcohol.
- Bring to the simmer and whisk for a couple of minutes until heated through.
- Take off the heat and add the desired amounts and types of alcohol (Don't feel guilty... it's Christmas time!).
- Divide between two glasses.
- Happy holidays!
The nutrition information above is an approximate guideline.
December 4, 2014
Ok... I am not exaggerating, this is the BEST mac and cheese I have EVER had or made. It is creamy, cheesy, delicious and much healthier than a non-vegan version. It is also amazingly quick to make which is great for those "I'm-going-to-wear-trackies-all-day-and-not-see-the-light-of-day" kind of day. Seriously make this... you will not regret it!
500g macaroni (reserve some of the cooking water)
1 cup raw cashews
1 3/4 cup soy milk
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
big pinch salt
big pinch pepper
2 teaspoons corn flour
2 teaspoons dijon mustard
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon tahini
2 teaspoons SMOKED paprika (so amazing)
1 garlic clove
chopped parsley (to garnish)
- In a food processor or blender, blend the cashews, soy milk, nutritional yeast, salt and pepper, corn flour, dijon mustard, lemon juice, tahini, smoked paprika and garlic. Blend until smooth and creamy. Taste, and season with more salt and pepper as needed.
- Cook the macaroni as per package instructions and reserve some of the cooking water.
- In a frypan on medium heat, pour in the creamy mixture from the food processor and allow to heat.
- Add the macaroni to the pan and drizzle in some of the cooking water to thin out the sauce as desired.
- Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve immediately.
- Now, sit back, relax in your comfiest trackies and devour the whole pan. Enjoy!