Adding Variety to Your Vegan Cookbook

In the past, the vegan diet has been thought of as too restrictive and a little austere.  However, a contemporary vegan cookbook has quite a variety of recipes to choose from.  A vegan diet is a diet that is completely animal-free, including no products made with anything from an animal.  What this type of diet includes is grains, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and legumes.  That’s it!  But, wow… what a huge variety of foods are in those categories.  


There is a new book called “Veganomicon” that contains some pretty amazing recipes and easy step-by-step instructions on how to make delicious and interesting meals. Recipes range from complicated and gourmet to plain and simple, and all can be delicious and satisfying.  So if you were thinking that a vegan diet is boring, think again.

Benefits of a Vegan Diet

There are, of course, many benefits to eating vegan.  This diet provides antioxidants, phytochemicals, fiber, complex carbohydrates, protein and many other vital nutrients that help prevent and fight chronic disease, support the immune system, and provide energy (and is also naturally low in fat and low in calories).  

Just take a look at some of the names of vegan recipes to whet your appetite, and this will help give you an idea of what kind of variety you can expect from your vegan cookbook.

Variety of Dishes

The list is quite extensive, and as unlimited as your imagination:

  • Thai Mushroom Noodle Soup
  • Black-Eyed Pea and Bulgur Salad
  • Hot Chili Macaroni
  • Walnut Mushroom Pate
  • Lemon Walnut Hummus
  • Leek and Bean Casserole
  • Brownies
  • Pumpkin Raisin Scones

Even a single food has variety. Take rice, for instance:

Varieties of Rice

  • Arborio is a short, pearly white grain used to make Italian risotto.  It’s soft and creamy.
  • Basmati is aromatic and nutty, either brown or white.
  • Black Japonica is a blackish-purple rice grown in Southeast Asia and California.  It has a mild nutty flavor and soft texture.
  • Jasmine rice is fragrant with a popcorn-like aroma.
  • Wehani is a mahogany-colored whole grain rice which works well in pilafs.
  • Wild rice is really a dark seed of a native North American aquatic grass, which is firm and chewy and very delicious.

There are as many or more varieties of grains and legumes and endless ways to prepare them.

Mexican-Style Rice Pudding  

The following is a recipe that’s simple, but delicious, for you to try:

  • 2-1/2 cups rice milk
  • 2 cups cooked white or brown rice
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup dark raisins
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons grated sweetened coconut
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 whole cinnamon stick
  • 1 (2-inch) strip of lime or orange peel

In a medium saucepan, combine the milk, rice, sugar raisins, coconut, vanilla, cinnamon stick and lime peel.  Cook over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, until the rice is thick and the fruit is tender, about 30 minutes.  Remove from the heat and let cool slightly. Transfer the pudding to a bowl and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.  When ready to serve, remove the cinnamon stick and citrus peel and discard.  Spoon the rice pudding into bowls and serve at once.  If desire, garnish each bowl with a twist of lime or orange peel.

Have fun with your vegan cookbook, and enjoy!




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