#Newvegan theme 8th january 2015

I started writing this up and was finding it really hard and was feeling a bit stressed.

I then though, hang on, this is silly! The theme was #Newvegan. demonstrating how easy it actually is to go vegan and here i am stressing over it! Oh the irony!

So, I have decided to talk about my journey and hopefully share some hints and tips along the way.

You can always catch up on the twitter feed for recipes and all sorts of other helpful bits and bobs.

I had been cutting out a lot of Dairy products for years as i found they were making me ill. Bad belly, sickness etc. My favourite chocolate was Galaxy. really creamy and I have to say, if there was a Vegan version that tasted like that, I’d be right there! (although vegan brands of chocolate are getting better and better so don’t let me put you off! ) I wasnt a dark chocolate fan really. The last straw for me came when I had some chocolate and within minutes i had to rush to the toilet. I, on that day decided I’d had enough.I changed to plant based alternatives.

We had stopped eating meat already and with the help of #Worldveganmonth both my Husband and myself gave a #vegan diet a go. We had initially said we would do it for the November and see how it went. We never looked back.

He was/is a big fan of Cheese. I’d stopped eating it a while before as it made me sick. He simply chose other sandwich fillings and tried different cheese alternatives until he found one he liked. At the moment, he prefers the Tesco / sheese smoked one. It’s not (I don’t thing)very much like a traditional ‘cheese’ BUT it’s really great with chutneys or used in baking.

I have recently discovered #Violife cheese. I’m also a big fan of #Tofutti cream cheese and their Mozarella slices. I think #Vegusto is also very good. it’s full of flavour, though it is more expensive.

a few other brands:

MozzaRisella

Veganic

Cheezly from VBites

Check out Veganoo for more help.

You can also make your own! Nut Cheeses are amazing. Cashew nuts make cheese! Who knew?! This is a really great. I’ve made a few of those and love them all! We even had a #vegancheese themed veganrecipehour! Loads of great recipes there.

Another revelation is Nutritional yeast. I think it’s one of the best kept secrets ever! I simply do not know why this isn’t a Mainstream product to be honest. it’s so versatile. Check out this blog post.

Neither of us have any Cheese cravings! Especially with all of the options available.

Milks, We actually both plump for the basics ranges of unsweetened Soya milk here. I like almond, rice, and Oat Milk. Hazelnut I didn’t like too much. I find personally, the nut milks are great in cooking and hot chocolate/coffee/cooking/poridge but in my tea and on cereal I like the unsweetened Soya. My advice is to simply try each type and you will probably find which you prefer. You can of course make your own. just google it and you will find loads of guides.

Tofu and Tempeh. I’m a fan of both and we make both at home. I get they Soya beans from the Chinese Supermarket in Liverpool. They are pretty Cheap. Click on the two links there for more info.

Some Tofu Brands

Cauldron

Clear Spot

Clear spring

Viana

And many more!

Spreads… I use spreads, people don’t for various reasons. It’s totally up to you what you use.

I usually use either Vitalite or Pure . Although, again, many more are available. I tend to use those because they are sold at most Supermarkets.

Here are a few lists that will help you to check ingredients.

Peta’s Animal ingredients list

Vegan Peace list

Booze. Did you know a lot of Beers and Wines are not even really vegetarian? They are ‘cleared’ with a thing called Isinglass. Read it? Grim huh! One great resource is Barnivore. A great way to check out the plonk! There are also I phone/android apps you can download.

The best bit of advice I can give is Don’t worry. By moving your diet towards a vegan one, you are already making a huge difference. I am always aware that I don’t go into the Environmental aspect or of course, the Animal welfare, cruelty, exploitation issues on Vegan recipe hour.

Becoming vegan is big step.It is a change to most aspects of your life and it can’t all be done over night. It’s not always financially as simple as getting a vegan alternative! Things do tend to be more expensive sometimes. It’s also not always easy to be the different one and yes, sometimes it is a right pain! But you have to remember why you are doing this, why you have made the change and remember all of the good you are doing for the Animals, the planet and for you. There is so much support out there, particularly on Twitter. You won’t be alone.

Don’t get me wrong. I care very much about all of those issues but, I see VRH as simply an education on food. What is possible, showing nothing is impossible and having an inclusive not exclusive philosophy. I also think there are many other people doing a much better job that I ever could talking about and education us about these issues.

I also know that one of the first thing you will get asked when you say you are Vegan is…’What do Vegan’s eat!??’

Just tell them to so a search on veganrecipehour ;o)

I hope that helps a little.

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