Friday, March 22, 2013

The Vegan Challenge Continues

Almost a year ago I began cooking for a client who wanted to prescribe to a vegan diet. Her goal was to see if removing all animal and animal by-products from her diet would get her cholesterol levels back under control. She did not want to be on a lifetime of medicine to control it if she could do so another way.

So our relationship began and I must admit that even today I find cooking for her a challenge. I have cooked for vegetarians in the past and knew that I had a great arsenal of recipes that I could use. It was when I began moving into the truly vegan recipes that I became overwhelmed.

My client suggested a cook book, Forks Over Knives, which I bought and began using...occasionally. I found the recipes to be interesting but very daunting. The amount of work that needed to be done to complete one recipe was mind blowing. I found  there were many more steps/preparations to get to the finished product and it can be pretty expensive! Given that I prepare five different meals for her each time I cook, I don't need one recipe to take an hour and a half to prepare before I cook it.

Needing to find over sources for recipes I turned to the Internet and found Urban Vegan and Veg Web. Both have been provided me with a variety of recipes that don't have four hundred ingredients and steps!

Another challenge is keeping the menus "fresh"...aka known as exciting and full of variety. Cooking every two weeks makes this aspect especially challenging. I seem to stuff a lot of things, like peppers, cabbage and grape leaves, and tortillas. I use a lot of beans and grains and rice. Dense foods like lentil loafs are out as she doesn't like, well, the density of them. I've got a good thing going with side sides; it's the main dish that often throws me in a panic. 

To add to it all, many vegan recipes do not freeze or freeze well.

I cooked this week for my client, who I really like, which is probably one of the reasons I am still cooking for her! It was not too challenging of a day, but then I made soup for one of the meals.  Here's a photo of the results of the day.

Spinach and Lemon Paella with Wine Braised Brussels Sprouts

Sweet and Sour Stuffed Cabbage with Roasted Cauliflower and Broccoli finished with Walnut Oil

Gnocchi and Wild Mushroom Gratin with Italian Style Green Beans

Braised Tofu in Curry Coconut Milk over Brown Basmati Rice

Mushroom, Orzo and Kale Soup with Herb Bread
 
 
I welcome any suggestions and/or recipes/websites, that might help me not feel so challenged!

1 comment:

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