Monday, December 29, 2008

Suddenly I'm a Vegan

Well, maybe not so suddenly...

I had been a vegetarian (eating dairy and the occasional egg) for over 30 years. Then I went to the doctor who found out that I have an underactive thyroid which has sent my cholesterol level into overdrive. The measure was 9.7 out of 10... which he said was dangerously high...hmmm.

He sent me to a nurse who said to cut down on cheese and chocolate as there wasn't much else I could do.

I walked out deciding that maybe a vegan lifestyle was the thing for me. I have friends overseas who are vegan and they gave me a ton of great links. I also joined the The Vegan/Vegetarian Society of Queensland and they sent me out a pack with some facts, figures and quite a few interesting recipes. I was pretty sick when I got the diagnosis so I wasn't eating much at the time, but now I am thinking more about food.

My hubby (who is now known as Dear One (DO)) and my youngest son (Dear Son, (DS) who still lives at home) are omnivores and although the son is not impressed with my vegan meals, my hubby is quite long as he gets some meat occasionally.

DO has eaten everything that I have cooked that is vegan and while some things are 'okay' he has raved over a spicy peanut sauce I made to go with some vegie patties with I thought were bland by themselves. I made Chana Masala which I thought was heaven on earth, a Tadka Dahl, which was okay over rice and a curry. I never used to like curries or chillis but now I quite enjoy them. They reckon Chilli is good to give your metabolism a kick start and since I have gained weight becasue of the tablets I am on, I am hoping my metabolism will get a move on and I can burn it those extra kilos.

I've done a bit of research and I am doing my best to eat balanced meals. I'm not a huge fan of soy products so I they aren't going to take a huge place in my diet. I've tried one brand of soya cheese and I will survive if I never eat it again. Soya yoghurts are overly sweet and I guess they will do in a pinch when I need to get the right amount of protein.

The purpose of this blog is to keep track of some of the recipes I try, so interesting things that I have found as well as place to keep links to great vegan sites. And if I find some prepackaged foods that I enjo, I'll list them here too... For instance, I had some Belgian Truffles which are vegan. I found them in KMart just before Christmas and I finished the last one today. Yummo for vegan suitable chocolates!!!!!!!!!!!!1

I have found some great sites and blogs, whose owners kindly post photographs of the foods they make. I hope to get into that habit one day.

Here is my spicy peanut sauce recipe, which I forgot to write down the measurements as I went I am guessing the levels.

Spicy Peanut Sauce

2 tablespoons peanut butter
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon malt vinegar (I think lemon juice would have been nice if I had any)
1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon chilli powder.

Stir over low heat until everything is melted together. Add more water if it is a bit dry. Adjust chilli and other sauces to taste.

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