I am a firm believer that food has endless and magical possibilities, and that it should be this way for everyone. New tastes and opportunities come with trying things, even if at first you may seem skeptical of them.
Though I do not follow a strict plant-based diet, I do love tasting the new possibilities that come with food technology and science nowadays. Isn’t it fascinating how meat substitute has become so popular nowadays? That being said, I still can’t resist a buttery high-quality foie gras dish or some juicy decadent oysters.
Coming from a family of four where my kids and spouse prefer unprocessed plant-based ingredients has always been a bit of a challenge for me. Whether it be having to find new ways to switch it up or be creative with how I use my ingredients, it is no denying that my family being plant-based is a challenge when I’m such a devoted cook.
But despite the challenge, I realised soon after that this was a new world for me to explore my relationship with food.
As well as it being fun to experiment with, seeing my family so energised, active, strong, and happy after their meals just motivates me greatly.
For all these reasons, I felt so excited to hear that the plant-based diet was taking on traction and influencing many others’ lives for the better.
With that in mind, I’d like to share with you all the wonderful benefits of the plant-based diet!
You might be asking, “what actually is a plant-based diet?”
“A plant-based diet consists of all minimally processed fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds, herbs, and spices and excludes all animal products, including red meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and dairy products.”
To be concise, this diet focuses more on eating foods that haven’t gone through any processing and thus have kept their natural characteristics. Though they may be found packaged or frozen, don’t worry. Just ensure these foods don’t contain any preservatives or added flavouring.
Health benefits of following this trendy diet!
In recent years, many have been looking into the physical effects of being vegan/vegetarian, with largely positive results.
Some may say…
The conversation surrounding plant-based diets is often very skeptical, many believing that there’s simply no way a vegetable product can taste anything like meat. But I’m of the belief that with a bit of research and a pinch of creativity, you can make a plant-based version of any dish you desire!
If you’d like to start your journey and need some guidance, I have some tips for you.
Pick your protein wisely
Many assume that one would be limited to simply tofu when trying to include protein in a plant based diet. While tofu has the strength of replicating the texture found in chicken, other substitutes like seitan can perfectly mimic the feeling that comes with ribs and beef in general.
Choose meaty veggies
While your brain may be set on purchasing plant-based meat, you can also use a little invention to apply this magic to vegetables. For example, everyone knows that Portobello mushrooms can be used to create a unique and lovely substitute for a beef patty. Many mushrooms have this meaty flavour as well as texture, so employ them and play around with what flavours you love the most!
Seasoning seasoning seasoning!
Seasoning will always be important in your cooking, but in the creation of plant-based dishes it is truly your best friend! If you need something quick and simple, poultry and steak spice blends are a necessity in your spice rack. Contrary to some belief, poultry and steak seasonings do not actually employ any meat, so use them to your heart’s content!
Using ‘meat’ broth
If you intend on making soups and stews that taste like meat, look no further than a flavourful broth! Just add meatless poultry and beef bouillon cubes to your average vegetable broth to transform it, or you can make your own broth! For example adding tamari, soy sauce, vegan Worcestershire sauce, red wine vinegar and black pepper to vegetable broth can make a tasty ‘beef’ broth!
The Final Takeaway!
As you can see, the benefits of being plant-based simply cannot match any other diet!
Hopefully, by now you can see why many are adopting a plant-based diet. Remember that you don’t immediately have to dive into it. Take it slow, incorporate small changes, and you’ll find it way easier to stick to it in the long run.
For those of you wishing to start this journey, The New Grocer is going to be coming out with new plant-based recipes and ingredients to help your meals taste delicious while being incredibly good for you! So stay tuned, and I’ll see you in the next entry :)
Are you convinced to start your plant-based journey today?