Veganism has spread fast and far, casting a wide net on even hard-core meat lovers. It's a common sight these days to see these people giving up entirely on meats and turning into staunch vegans. We wonder how difficult it must be for a just-turned vegetarian to avoid what used to be their favourite food ever. A foodie is a foodie forever! While we endorse a healthy living through a healthy diet; by no means we concur to compromise on taste. Giving up on non-vegetarian food doesn't necessarily mean giving up on the enjoyment of eating them. Yes, with a well of plant-derived produce easily accessible, you can always pick up those foods that replicate the same texture, properties and taste of your once-revered meats.
Meatless meat is the newest fad that is spreading like wildfire. They are plant-based foods that have similar molecular structure as that of animal meat. They are considered as a great alternative to meats as they are healthier and environment-friendly.
As per consultant nutritionist, Dr. Rupali Dutta, "Meatless meats are made from really good quality proteins. Consumption of meatless meats is, therefore, good for the environment as well as health as it is low in cholesterol and fats."
Plant-based proteins make for perfect imitation meats as they provide almost the same amount of protein content and contain many essential nutrients and all nine amino acids that are present in meats. Also, they have zero saturated and trans fats, which are also found in abundance in animal meats.
Mock meats are flying off the shelves of grocery stores nowadays. But, if you want to avoid the preservatives and processing additives contained in them, you should try cooking with raw foods at home.
Here Are Some Mock Meat Options Every Just-Turned Vegan Should Try:
Tofu Salad -
A quintessential Asian cuisine staple, tofu is made from soybeans and very rich in protein content. Tofu can acquire a meat-like texture and taste by refrigerating it and pressing it down to make it harder and chewy. You can use tofu in place of chicken or shredded lamb to make your favourite salad. You can also try pastas and noodles to bring in variety.
Soya Kebabs -
Just replace minced pork, chicken or mutton with tiny soya granules and fry or roast to make delicious kebabs. Have with mint chutney and you'll never miss non-vegetarian snacks. Soya abounds with proteins, and the best part about this superfood is that it has the same texture as animal meats. Soya can also sop up marinades, sauces and gravies well to ooze out meat-like flavour.
Mushroom Pizza -
Mushrooms are naturally meaty in flavour as well as texture. They are fibre-dense and low in calorie content, making it an ideal food for weight loss purpose. A pizza topped with a bed of thin slices of mushrooms in place of salamis can gracefully take the place of a pepperoni pizza.
Black Bean Burger -
These protein-rich beans render an earthy taste and texture to any meal, which turns out to be whole-heartedly filling. Mash boiled black beans and add to the mixture, other ingredients (peas, potatoes etc.) and spices to make small round balls. Press the balls with your hands to flatten them. Fry them and make delicious burgers with these grainy tikkis.
Here, we are trying to debunk the notion that vegetarian food is boring. Be smart and make meaty meat-free dishes that help you transition into your all-new vegan diet, without really missing animal meats.
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.
About Neha GroverLove for reading roused her writing instincts. Neha is guilty of having a deep-set fixation with anything caffeinated. When she is not pouring out her nest of thoughts onto the screen, you can see her reading while sipping on coffee.