Sunday, 8 November 2015

A Week Of Vegan Meals - Week One

Porridge: I'm not very good at mornings. In fact I'm really, really crap at mornings. Eating is the last thing on my mind when I first get up, so I don't do breakfast. However, these days I can't afford to be starving when I'm out and about, because sausage rolls from the bakery are very tempting, but they aren't vegan. And so I've tried forcing myself to have breakfast a few days this week. Porridge, made with almond milk, is very nice. I haven't missed cows' milk in porridge at all. 

Stir Fry: First meal of the week - just a bog standard stir-fry, with caraway and sesame seeds. I wanted to use the beansprouts while they were still fresh, and needed to keep veganism easy by cooking something I'm already used to.

Linda McCartney's Sausages: To ease my meat withdrawal symptoms. I thought I could manage fine without meat substitutes, but I can't. Not yet anyway. These were a godsend! And so good I had the same meal twice this week! Both times served with mashed potato, cabbage and onion gravy made with Original Bisto. Linda Bellingham is probably turning in her grave. 

MY Green Curry: I wanted a thai green curry so badly, but didn't have any of the thai ingredients - lemongrass, galangal, not even ginger, so I made a paste in the same way as normal but using tarragon instead of all the above. It was delicious! And I have quite a bit of the paste leftover to use some other time too. 

Verts Mariniere: I made this just as I would make moules mariniere - with a white wine, garlic and cream sauce, except I only had rosé, and obviously I substituted vegetables for the mussels and used soy cream instead of cows' cream. The soy cream was good to cook with and tasted great! I used leeks instead of shallots because they're more substantial and I thought they'd go well with the sauce. They did. I made far too much of this, and overcooked it a bit so it wasn't going to freeze too well. I thought it would be lovely in some tarts with caramelised onion on top.... but SOMEbody left it out on top of the microwave all night uncovered... I discovered it the next day looking a bit crusty on top. So there'll be no tarts here this week. 

Takeaway: Treated myself to a takeaway from some place I've never been to before. I got saag chana with a naan bread and a bit of salad. It was ok, but I know the place next door does much better and bigger naan breads, and the saag chana was too much for me as a single dish. There's only so much chickpeas and spinach I can eat in one sitting. And that place was quite expensive. I have resolved to seek out Rice N Three sometime soon. 

Takeaway 2: Unexpected takeaway when my husband decided to go for a kebab at the last minute! Yayy! Not a place you would automatically choose if you're a vegan - there was only one thing on the menu I could have. Veggie 'burger' and fries. Take those quotation marks as a sign of my utter contempt for the misuse of the word 'burger' in this context. Never, ever again! It wasn't a burger, it was mashed potato with peas and sweetcorn in it. In a bun. With salad and barbecue sauce. Utterly wrong on every level. And it was disgusting. I think Linda McCartney may have given me a false sense of security. Back to Vegan Level: Nervous for me again then. 

Salad: I've had a few salads this week. I love salad, which is handy, but I need hot food too, so salads have been for smaller meals only.

Potato Wedges: This plate of potato wedges was real comfort food to me. It felt like something I would 'normally' have, even though I don't normally eat potatoes. I really have craved them this week though. I'm going with the potato flow for now. At least these were real potatoes, unlike the fries. Nothing fancy, just salt, pepper and olive oil. 

Snacks on the go: I've been doing this a lot - carrots, celery, radishes, cherry tomatoes. And nuts. Lots of nuts. Especially cashews. I seem to always have a bag of nuts in my handbag these days. Just in case I get hungry while I'm out. Definitely still Vegan Level: Nervous.

Parsnip Thingies: I don't know what these are supposed to be called. I boiled some parsnips, mashed them, shaped them into balls, drizzled them in oil and roasted them. They're very nice. They kinda lost their ball shape though and flattened out a bit. I've only eaten one so far. These are in the fridge waiting to be reheated. 

Peanut butter, banana and beansprouts on toast: It's my favourite sandwich ever. I've had quite a lot of peanut butter on toast this week. More bread than I'd usually have, but I'm not going to worry about it too much for now. 

Bananas, chopped hazelnuts and coconut cream with grated chocolate: Well duh! It looks like a lot of chocolate, but it was only about a quarter of one piece! 

Kiwis with coconut cream and hazelnuts: Not really a fan of kiwis on their own as I find them too acidic. Will have them with something else next time. Still good though! 

Other stuff I've eaten: Almost a whole packet of Oreos, about a packet and a half of kettle-chip-style-crisps and a packet of hula hoops. I've also had a few pieces of fruit and a Co-Yo yoghurt. 

I have eaten better than I have in a long time. I've also eaten a lot more than I have in a long time. I've cut down my coffee this week from 10-plus cups per day to one. And this is the first time in well over a year that my digestive system has behaved 'normally'. I'll not go into any more detail about that, but there have been significant changes. I feel lighter, and cleaner; not just physically, but in my conscience and my spirit too. So far so good! 


  1. Well done Sally great week .. Great read .. Sweet potato wedges are great to try too .. Good luck for the next week xx

  2. Thanks Marianne! I do love sweet potato wedges :) I think this first week I needed something that felt a bit more familiar lol.