As January's cold days call for heartening food to warm up our soul, we are getting together with our loved ones indoors and indulging in our favourite vegetarian comfort food. Coincidently, our entire team happens to be vegetarian, so we asked around to discover why they had decided to go meat-free and what their favourite dishes were. Because we like our birds and cattle wild and free, here is a roundup of the tastiest - and easiest- recipes you can try at home this weekend. Let us know how they turn out!
Amie, yoga teacher at our Kingfisher room in Margate
" I didn't really think about where my meat actually came from. I just thought if it's free range it's fine. Then my vegan friend made me watch the documentary called Cowspiracy and it really opened my eyes to the farming industry and the detrimental effect it's having on our planet. Also, it makes me sad that we can differentiate a cow from a horse, or our pet dog with a pig. All of these animals feel pain, fear, frustration, happiness... chickens enjoy basking in the sun just as cats do. What gives humans the right to decide which animals get to live and which animals are industrially farmed and mass slaughtered?
My favourite recipe would have to be the sweet potato lentil & coconut curry by Deliciously Ella. Get the full recipe on Amie's blog here
My main concern lies on the environment. The amount of soil that is turned over to grow food to feed animals in order to feed other animals to feed us, rather than directly feeding humans, is huge. As well as the alarming levels of methane produced by cattle around the world, the welfare and treatment of animals being bred in factories is just not up to modern standards.
If I had to choose one dish, I would go for Campania's
hand-rolled pasta, with light tomato sauce and fresh basil leaves on top.
Dani, Store Manager
I think it's important to be a vegetarian because I care about the planet. I believe in maintaining a balance between animals, humans and plants for the Earth to flourish.
My favourite vegetarian recipe has to be a veggie breakfast with all the trimmings, spinach, smoked tofu, veggie sausages, avocado and sourdough toast. Oh, and hash browns with a generous splash of bbq sauce.
Imogen, Account Manager
I think it's important to eat less meat for many reasons, firstly the environmental impact of meat production is huge and if we want to carry on living in this world then we need to do so in a more balanced way. Secondly, personally the treatment of animals in much of the meat industry is not something I'm happy with, and thirdly, we simply don't need to eat as much meat as we do and would be much healthier if we ate a more varied diet including proteins from other sources.
My favourite vegetarian recipe is probably one of my mum's homemade veggie lasagnas or a yummy lentil daal.
I was brought up living a meat free diet, feasting on delicious veggie meals cooked by my mother. Since getting my dog Hiro, not eating meat has become even more important to me, I wouldn’t eat my dog so why would I eat any other lovely creature on this planet?
MUSHROOM WELLINGTON RECIPE
- 500 gs of mushrooms
- Olive oil
- One onion
- A stalk of celery
- One carrot
- Three cloves of garlic
- One vegetable stock cube
- Cayenne pepper
So, you take 500g of portobello mushrooms, slice them so they're 1/2 cm thick and sauté in a little olive oil for 3-4 minutes (before they leach all their tasty liquidz) set aside in a bowl to cool. Then in the same pan - sweat a sliced onion, a stalk of celery ( if you have it), and a chopped carrot, once they're soft - then add some garlic (at least three cloves!) crumble in a veggie stock cube and a bit of cayenne. Remove that from the heat and add back the mushrooms. Mix it all up and sprinkle in half a pack of ground almonds (though I'm not sure how much that is - check how much you've got left in the cupboard!) add some PEPPER PEPPER PEPPER. And then wrap it all up in the pastry, make a load of crazy embellishments with the leftovers, then glaze with a little milk, use a makeshift pasty brush that Freddie fashions from a bit of wool and some wooden tongs. Remove bits of fluff from the pastry, then whack it in the onion on 180 for 35mins!
Serve with lovely friends and some awesome roasted vegetables.