My husband said a brilliant thing the other day. In his light bulb moment, he said, with vegetarianism and its food, there is always the feeling that the recipes are trying to replace something. Then he went on to say that in veganism too, when people talk about it that aren't vegan, often they talk about what you can't eat, rather than all the wonderful things you can.
I've been involved with the vegetarian lifestyle since my teens. I've also eaten pescatarian for many years. Recently though, I've become excited about raw foods and veganism. I'm seeing past the rhetoric of what you can't eat and enjoying all the magickal goodies from the plant kingdom that you can.
Seeing how he, a dedicated carnivore, saw all the potentiality in veganism, I decided to add some vegan dishes to our Father's Day feast. I made spinach/portabella burgers and Asian sweet potato salad. Hubby made a vegan roasted eggplant salad. Then we had a number of other dishes, for the vegetarians and omnivores at the table. The family loved it. Even my notoriously finicky son dug in. Instead of missing something, there was a new element of taste and wonder (how'd she do that with that stuff?) to the meal.
One of the things, even I as the cook of such things was surprised about, was my raw vegan ganache tartlettes. First of all, I was surprised when I went to make the crust. It is largely walnut based, with no added oils. Well, low and behind, from processing the nuts in the food processor, they through off lots of oils--I'd made walnut oil! The walnut oil held all the other chocolately ingredients together.
Notice the gleaming surfaces. That's shine is from the natural oils that were released from grinding up the nuts. I can just imagine the antioxidants and nutrients, freed up and ready to be absorbed into our bodies.
Here are the finished goodies.
They use brown rice syrup in place of cane sugar, coconut oil instead of butter, pure cacao powder for the chocolate element, and the rest of the ingredients are completely vegan and raw as well. The peppermint came from my garden. I felt as though I was being nourished while eating something yummy. That doesn't happen too often.