Why eat plant based? For me, it’s about the environment and knowing what I am eating. Plant based foods are better for the planet and of course, better for our bodies. While I can’t say that I will ever be vegan, I have really enjoyed incorporating more plant based recipes into my cooking. While I love many of the new foods and recipes, there are a few of my old favorites that I miss…Which is why I have come up with some alternative versions.
Peruvian Cauliflower (formerly Peruvian Chicken)
I have served Peruvian chicken at countless family gatherings and I will say it is a favorite among my family and friends. I wanted to create a plant based alternative that I could offer side by side the chicken. I decided on cauliflower because of it’s texture and ability to soak up a marinade. The result=fantastic! Even the chicken eaters were loving it.
1/2 cup olive oil
8 garlic cloves – pressed
1/2 cup white vinegar
4 lemons – juiced
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon tumeric
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon cayenne
Marinade the cauliflower (1 full head chopped into medium size pieces) in the marinade for at least 4 hours. Grill or bake for 30-40 minutes on medium heat (350).
I love cream based soups, who doesn’t? But now that I am cutting or at least limiting dairy, it’s been a challenge to find good ways to prepare creamy soups. One of my favorite Austrian dishes, is pumpkin soup. It’s healthy, delicious and hearty. The original recipe does call for cream, but here’s my new non dairy version:
Saute 1 medium onion(diced) and a 2 Tablespoons olive oil
Peel and dice a 1.5 lb pumpkin, add to onions & oil
Add salt, pepper(to taste) & cumin and paprika(1 teaspoon each)
Add two cloves garlic (minced) and 1 bay leaf
When pumpkin is slightly browned, add 3 cups vegetable stock
Add 3 cups milk (I use coconut or cashew milk)
Boil until pumpkin is soft and blend with emulsion blender.
Thicken with 3 to 4 Tablespoons Cashew butter
Serve with drizzling of pumpkin oil and top with pepitas (hulled pumpkin seeds)
Note: If you can’t find cashew cream in your grocery store, it’s easy to make. Add 1 cup cashews to 1/2 cup water, soak for 30 mins, then add 1 clove garlic and puree until smooth.