Let’s talk about why eating less meat and dairy is not the only thing that makes a diet sustainable, and why not being vegan doesn’t make you a bad environmentalist.Read More
Preparation time: 30 minutes
- 3 cups of mushroom, chopped (approximately three large, flat mushrooms)
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 tbsp rosemary
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- ½ onion, chopped
- 1 can black beans
- 1 cup oats
- 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
- Salt & Pepper
- Roast the mushrooms at 160 degrees celsius, along with the garlic, balsamic vinegar, onion and rosemary, for 10-15 minutes.
- Drain and then blend the black beans. Add half the oats and blend again. Add the rest of the oats but leave whole. (You can add more oats to dry the mixture - it should stick together easily and not be too runny).
- Remove the mushroom and onion from the oven and add to the mixture. Add the breadcrumbs. Stir and season well.
- Mould the mixture into burger patties. The mixture should provide about 4 large-ish patties - depending on how big you want them to be, it could provide more.
- Place in the freezer for 10-20 minutes.
- Place olive oil in a frying pan and allow it to heat. Remove your patties from freezer and place straight into the frying pan. Fry either side until golden brown and crispy.
- Serve on a bun with smashed avocado, fresh lettuce and tomato and any other of your favourite condiments. I like to serve my burger with homemade sweet potato fries!
Cut down on your meat consumption
As discussed in my previous post, there are a number of issues associated with the production and consumption of meat. Why not start by trying Meat Free Monday and then take it from there? This is a great way to ease yourself into eating less meat.
Switch to plant-based milk
Have you ever stopped to think about the fact that we are the only mammal on the planet which consumes milk after infancy, let alone drinks milk from another mammal? Once that sunk in, I totally changed my view of the dairy industry. An easy first step is to switch to plant-based milk in your coffee order, and take it from there. Almost all coffee shops will now stock Soy and Almond milk, due to increasing consumer demand for alternatives.
Support your local farmers
Before food production was industrialised and the global population exploded, farmers markets were the only place you could buy your food. Nowadays, it’s deemed too much effort. Buying from weekly food markets is a great way to support your local farmers and guarantee you take home fresh, delicious fruit and vegetables which haven’t travelled thousands of kilometres to get to you.
Buy organic when you can
Organic fruit and vegetables are free from pesticides and chemicals and are more nutritious. The use of pesticides and chemicals in farming causes deposits to seep into lakes, rivers, and reservoirs via surface water runoff, ending up in our water system. Buying organic food supports sustainable farming, which in turn preserves non-renewable fossil fuels, saves money spent on energy resources and reduces global warming impacts.
Try growing your own food
One of the things I love most about growing my own vegetables is learning how and when they grow, and the joy in harvesting them once they are ready. Homegrown food also tastes SO much better and can save you money! Start with herbs such as basil, chives or rosemary and then go from there. You don’t even need a backyard, just a sunny spot by a window.
Join the slow food movement
The rise of the 24/7 society, unsocial work hours and an accelerating pace of life have made it challenging for individuals to devote time to cooking, and led the consumption of fast food to soar. Slow food is a global grassroots movement which promotes a lifestyle that connects our food consumption to the wider social, ethical, lifestyle, political and environmental elements around us. Slow food’s aims are to protect food biodiversity, build links between producers and consumers, and raise awareness of some of the most pressing topics affecting our food system. Find out what your local slow food movement is up to and get involved.
This recipe is a vegan version of classic basil pesto i.e. without the parmesan! If you still like your pesto to have a cheesy flavour, add some nutritional yeast, which is also a source of vitamin B12, a complete protein and has loads of other health benefits. I also add some golden flax flakes, another superfood which is tasteless but a good source of omega 3. Finally, I like to add some avocado to make it a bit creamy.
This is a super easy, healthy go-to vegan meal that only takes 10 minutes to prepare!
- ¼ - ½ Avocado
- 2 handfuls of basil leaves
- 2 cloves of garlic
- Juice of ½ lemon
- Handful of pine nuts (or use cashews or almonds instead)
- 3 tablespoons of olive oil
- Salt & Pepper
- 1-2 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- 1 tablespoon golden flax flakes /ground flaxseed
- Roast the pine nuts at 160 degrees celsius for 5-10 minutes, until golden brown. Keep an eye on them as they burn quickly!
- Add the pine nuts, along with all other ingredients to a blender.
- Blend until smooth. Add more olive oil until it is at your desired consistency.
- Serve with pasta, on bread, or any other way you would like!
- I had mine on pasta, served with sautéed mushroom, onion and broccoli and fresh basil and tomatoes. Yum!