It’s the first day of Vegan Heathen Lent and, despite falling down on trying to post every day for the 40 days of atoning or whatever last year, and not getting very far on Holidailies, I will DO MY BEST to post, let’s say, thrice a week from now until the anniversary of when Dude comes out of his cave or whatever.
I think that vegan food is not that fascinating, so photos will be few, but know that I am doing this on a budget this year (20+ years of trying to keep up with better-paid and more well-off people is hard to recover from, but I’m committed to get them debts down by living super budget), so if I come up with anything hella cheap and genius, I’ll post it here. Though, as per usual, I am awful at writing things down when I’m doing kitchen experiments, and all ‘recipes’ posted here reflect this en hostie.
Example: Lunches this week involve putting vegan pâté on toasted multigrain bagels.
What’s in it? It varies, but this is more or less what I did this week.
Vegan pâté à la Megan (Variation #27) (Makes about 2 cups, or a work week and a bit’s worth of sandwiches.)
(I did this in an Instant Pot, but if you don’t have one, just do everything on the stove, and cook it longer.)
Heat up a tbsp of oil in a pot (olive, canola, whatever) (Instant Pot sauté setting)
1 chopped up big onion
2 minced cloves of garlic
Stir it around and let ’em cook for about 5 minutes.
2 shredded up raw beets (I’ve also used carrots or parsnips – something rooty/starchy)
250g (ish?) of mushrooms? or slightly less, plus a couple of dried ones. (A giant tub of these from Costco is $20 well spent. It’ll last, like, a year, even if you are a mushroom fiend like me.)
Stir that around for a couple of minutes, then add.
1 cup brown lentils
1.5-2 cups weak veggie or mushroom stock, or plain water if you have dried mushrooms in the mix
1 bay leaf
1 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp sage
(Just use whatever herbs you like with mushrooms.)
Stir it up.
If using an Instant Pot, hit cancel, then put on Bean/Chili setting for about 12 minutes.
If using the stovetop, bring to a boil, then turn it down, and simmer, stirring every now and again, for about 20 minutes. Add more water if things are sticking.
Instant Pot: Beeping means hit Cancel, and wait for pressure to come down.
Stovetop: Lentils being soft means shutting things off.
Take the bay leaf out and mash that shit up (a stick blender is best).
Tip the lentil goo into a bowl and add 1/2 cup breadcrumbs and, if you’re fancy like me and got a deal on almond flour on Amazon, 1/3 cup almond flour. (I have also used chopped up walnuts and pecans.)
Stir that shit up. Salt and pepper to taste. Add a splash of balsamic vinegar if you’re feeling kicky.
Stick in the fridge to firm/flavour up for a couple of hours before digging in.
It looks, well, pre-eaten the same way that dal or refried beans do, but it tastes pretty fancy and is lovely on a cracker. Like when I spill it on myself.
(Racial humour’s OK now, right? Trump said so?)
Oh, and important update: Bea continues to be a super pesky joy.