Monday Night = Vegan Night

by Abel Prasad

Its been a big weekend and to be honest I’m trying to cut meat from my diet at least three times a week.

I’ve been asked why for three nights a week I decided to go vegan, many people believe that going vegan is about preventing the exploitation of animals. But that is not the only reason for becoming vegan, but for many it remains the key factor in their decision to go vegan and stay vegan.

I’m not going to lie I can’t be 100% Vegan although my mother who is a devote Hindu would love that.

My gut has been a bit of an issue recently and gut health is very important to a healthy mind, body and soul.

Well-planned vegan diets follow healthy eating guidelines, and contain all the nutrients that our bodies need. Both the British Dietetic Association and the American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics recognise that they are suitable for every age and stage of life. Some research has linked vegan diets with lower blood pressure and cholesterol, and lower rates of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and some types of cancer.

Going vegan is a great opportunity to learn more about nutrition and cooking, and improve your diet. Getting your nutrients from plant foods allows more room in your diet for health-promoting options like whole grains, fruit, nuts, seeds and vegetables, which are packed full of beneficial fibre, vitamins and minerals.

Each day I will be updating my blog on what food I will be eating that night, granted on days that I am heading out for a meal with my mates I doubt I’ll know what I’m eating in advance. But at least it might be a vegetarian option.

Roasted carrots with cashew ago blanco dressing. Original image from delicious.com.au

Tonights meal will be: Roasted carrots with cashew ago blanco dressing

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 bunch baby (Dutch) carrots, trimmed
  • 1/2 tsp ras el hanout (Moroccan spice blend from delis)
  • 1/4 tsp sumac
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) robust extra virgin olive oil, plus extra to serve
  • Micro red radish leaves, to serve

AJO BLANCO

  • 75g white bread, crusts removed
  • 115g cashews, roughly chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) sherry vinegar
  • 1/2 cup (125ml) mild extra virgin olive oil

METHOD

  • 1.For ajo blanco, soak bread in water for 5 minutes to soften, then drain. Transfer to a blender with cashews, garlic, vinegar and mild olive oil.
  • 2.With the motor running on high, gradually add 1/3 cup (80ml) cold water. Whiz for 30 seconds or until smooth. Set aside in a bowl until ready to serve.
  • 3.Preheat the oven to 200°C. Grease and line a baking tray with baking paper.
  • 4.Place the carrots in a bowl with spices and robust olive oil. Season, then toss to coat.
  • 5.Transfer to the baking tray and roast for 40 minutes or until golden and tender.
  • 6.Spread ajo blanco over a serving plate and top with carrots. Scatter with micro radish and drizzle with extra oil to serve.
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