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Thread: Building up a repertoire

  1. #1
    Syren's Avatar
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    Default Building up a repertoire

    I'm an 18-year-old somewhat new vegan and cook. As such, I'm trying to kind of build up a repertoire of basic recipes that I can throw together without carefully following a recipe, little planning, etc. Your standard weeknight lunch/supper sort of meals. ;D I'm a mean hand when it comes to baking, so baked goods and breakfasts are easy stuff, and I've had some luck with soup/stew/dhal sort of recipes.

    It'd be great if you could list a couple of the recipes you fall back on, time after time. Preferably recipes that are suitable for a newbie cook and which don't take too much time to prepare. Beans and rice are great, but I could use some inspiration as to how to spice those suckers up and make them tasty, hehe. Stuff with a bit of a kick is best... comfort food is okay from time to time, but the spicy stuff is lots of fun!

    Thanks, guys

  2. #2
    AR Activist Roxy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Building up a repertoire.

    We occaisionally make Vegan Spaghetti Bolognaise.

    Just boil the spaghetti as per the packet directions.

    For the sauce we mix up and cook together in a pan:

    chopped mushrooms
    chopped red pepper
    chopped green pepper
    chopped onion
    chopped garlic
    bottled pasta sauce (usually an organic roasted garlic or herb one)

    then we add a packet of Yves Italian ground round and stir through until it's all warmed.

    Mmmmmm - this is delicious!

  3. #3
    Eating Wildflower's Avatar
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    Default Re: Building up a repertoire.

    I eat lots of simple things like bean burritos or beans and tortillas...basically I use canned refried black or pinto beans, then I chop up veggies (green onions, tomatoes, avacado, olives, spinach, shredded carrots, chilis, basically whatever you like). this is more heating then cooking. i put the beans on the tortillas and warm in the microwave for 30 seconds or so.

    I also always keep some whole wheat spagetti and a jar of marinara sauce on hand, and some Tofurky itallian sausages in my freezer.

    I grill a lot - grilled veggies and tofu or seitan are great. I grill onion, brocolli, mushrooms, red peppers, grape tomatoes on skewers. grilled portabella mushroom caps with a nice baked potato, or chopped potatoes w/garlic and olive oil in a foil pack on the grill. I roast corn on the grill too - just run a whole cob of corn with the husk and everything under water, and throw it on the grill, turning every 5 or so minutes for about 20 minutes.

    tofu scramble is good w/toast for breakfast or dinner. I use silken tofu w/tumeric and cook with onions, brocolli, canned tomatoes, mushrooms, spinach, etc. roast potatoes w/sage and white pepper, garlic and olive oil go well with it.

    I always have avacados around, tomatoes, green onions and limes to make up guacamole. Good snack!

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    Default Re: Building up a repertoire.

    Quote Wildflower
    I grill a lot - grilled veggies and tofu or seitan are great. I grill onion, brocolli, mushrooms, red peppers, grape tomatoes on skewers. grilled portabella mushroom caps with a nice baked potato, or chopped potatoes w/garlic and olive oil in a foil pack on the grill. I roast corn on the grill too - just run a whole cob of corn with the husk and everything under water, and throw it on the grill, turning every 5 or so minutes for about 20 minutes.
    i am so glad it's getting warm, cant' wait to pull out the bbq. grilled corn on the cob is the best..



    i make a lot of stir fries.. i got a wok for christmas and it has made all of the difference with my tofu cooking. i fry that up first, generally coated in tahini (makes it crisper) and then do the veggies..... it's great because you can experiment with spices and it never comes out the same...and i make a ton so it lasts a few days.

  5. #5
    Eating Wildflower's Avatar
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    Default Re: Building up a repertoire.

    gee, i never thought of coating tofu in tahini!

    Do you think it would grill that way?

    I have a wok, but I really never use it...i didn't used to like stirfry much, but I have been more into it lately. Maybe I will have to have a go at it.

  6. #6

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    Default Re: Building up a repertoire.

    ohh, i am going to have to try to grill it that way and find out- i have never grilled tofu

  7. #7

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    Default Re: Building up a repertoire.

    I made some beanburgers yesterday and surprised even myself! (I am the kind of person who normally follows recipes to a T - lately I've been more adventurous). I got a tin of kidney beans and mashed them (small tin). Then I added 2 tablespoons of couscous, some hot water, about a teaspoon of vegan stock powder, some tomato paste, a little Tabasco and some breadcrumbs. Mixed it all together and let it sit until the couscous was soft (about five minutes). Then I made "burger" shapes, coated them in cornfour and shallow fried them. Worked a treat and they held together superbly, better than any recipe I've previously tried.

  8. #8

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    Default Re: Building up a repertoire.

    Here's what I did this week.

    1. Cook quinoa (or cous cous) in vegetable stock using the absorption method (add herbs/spices if desired).

    While that is cooking (10-15 mins), knock up some stir-fried vegies, garlic, herbs etc. with legume of choice. See if you can find a nice stir-fry sauce from the supermarket or use soy sauce/tamari.

    Marry the two. Yum!



    2. Buy a can of vegan Thai curry paste (yellow curry is good) and a can of coconut milk (or as directions on packet).

    Fry onions, leeks, whatever. Add curry and coconut milk (to taste) and vegies and simmer until cooked. I like to put sweet potato in it and squeeze in a lime.

    3. For a quick meal, throw in onions, fresh vegies, herbs etc. and stir-fry. Add noodles, fave pasta sauce a bit of tahini and it's ready in a few minutes.

    If you do all this one day a week and freeze it in portions, you don't have to cook all week. It's also cheap as you can bulk it up with celery, spinach and sweet potato.

    I also make a large salad and squeeze lime in it. Depending on what you put in it, it can keep for a week. Oh an electric wok is very, very useful.

  9. #9

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    Default Re: Building up a repertoire.

    Can I come over to yours for dinner?

  10. #10
    Cake Fairy Cherry's Avatar
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    Default Re: Building up a repertoire.

    My favourites to fall back on are tofu stir fry with noodles/rice, chilli, pasta sauce with roasted veg added, lentil or chickpea curry and cous cous with chickpeas.

    (See below)

  11. #11
    fortified twinkle's Avatar
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    Default Re: Building up a repertoire.

    My favourite spicy things (especially for a party, because they impress guests and it's more cost and time effective to make them in bulk) are falafel. Apparently authentic falafel are made with soaked ground uncooked chick peas, but I like to pour boiling water over mine after I've soaked them for 12 hours, because otherwise they give me indigestion.

    They're great because you can spice them up as much as you want, and serve them with lots of different accompaniments in different ways (though the classic is always going to be in pitta with salad and garlicky, lemony tahini sauce, and chilli sauce). You can also freeze them and heat them up later, so although they're not "quick" to prepare initially they do fry quickly, and they do make a quick meal for other times. You can prepare the mixture ages in advance and then just fry it at the last minute.
    "If you don't have a song to sing you're okay, you know how to get along humming" Waltz (better than fine) - Fiona Apple

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