Plant Based Cuisine that will Excite Your Taste Buds

Plant Based Cuisine that will Excite Your Taste Buds

Plant Based Cuisine that will Excite Your Taste Buds

We’ve all heard about plant based diets or going vegan and for many of us I’m sure our minds go to eating shrivelled kale and bland tofu, I’m here to tell you that those are definitely not your only options. While a plant based diet has many health benefits, it is also great for the environment; it helps to reduce carbon emissions, minimise agricultural land use and lessen the impacts of climate change. So, let’s see how we can make this traditionally unexciting cuisine into something that you look forward to trying.

Accra Classroom

The Poké bowl is traditionally a Hawaiian dish that is comprised of diced raw fish, rice, raw and pickled fruits and vegetables. We can make an amazing vegan alternative by tossing some cubed tofu in cornflour and frying it off with some honey and soy sauce. The rest of your ingredients can be equal parts of sushi rice, avocado, cucumber, pickled edamame beans. Add some pickled ginger, fresh chilli, peanuts and sesame seeds on top. Drizzle some lemon and some soy sauce and you’ve got a fresh and delicious bowl ready to eat.

Vegan chilli is impossibly easy to make and a lovely Mexican dish to add to your plant based repertoire. I add mixed three beans and corn, but you can add any legumes you prefer, simmer it with some diced tomato, herbs, chilli and garlic until it’s a thick tomatoey mixture. I love to eat it with tortilla chips and guacamole but you can always make a bowl with some quinoa, salsa, guacamole and your choice of fresh veg.

Sushi is my favourite meal of all time so naturally I had to find a way to make it plant based. Though the end result is more similar to the Korean Gimbap, it’s still a delectable alternative. I love to use plant based ‘chicken’ pieces but you can also use mushrooms, tofu or any other protein options that you prefer. The key is to tightly pack the sushi rice onto the piece of nori and place the finely sliced vegetables at the bottom. I love to combine cucumber, pickled ginger, carrot, avocado and a protein option. Roll it up tightly and cover it in sesame oil to bind it all together. Just cut it up and dip in soy sauce, then you have your perfect vegan sushi!

Of course we have to include a mouth watering pasta; this creamy mushroom, spinach and pine nut combination is perfect for a busy week night as it takes less than 20 minutes. Fry off your pine nuts first to bring out their flavour, then add your sliced mushrooms, baby spinach, garlic, herbs, chilli flakes, salt and pepper. Once the veg is cooked, add your plant based milk or cream (oat or rice are preferable due to their creamier texture), allow to simmer for about 10 minutes and add some cornflour in water to thicken. Add to your pasta and you’re sorted for dinner.

Veggie burritos are an easy and diverse option for lunch or a light dinner. With the right amounts of chilli and garlic, you can put any combination of veg and plant based protein. I tend to slice up bell peppers and ‘chicken’ strips and fry them up in a spicy tomato salsa (with chilli, garlic, smoked paprika and herbs). Feel free to add rice and beans with some coriander and lime juice. Put it all into a tortilla wrap and you’re ready to go.

If you’re a curry person, this chickpea curry will change your life. I start off by frying my diced onions and tomatoes, then adding butter chicken curry spice and my chickpeas. You can add bell pepper, butternut or spinach at this stage as well. Once it’s all fried nicely, I add some tomato paste and coconut cream, add garlic and chilli to taste, mix it all together and allow to simmer for about 20 minutes. Serve with some basmati rice and optional lime juice.

Hopefully these mini recipes are enough to get you excited about plant based cooking! Which one will you try first?