Let’s Eat

I have several friends who have made the transition to becoming vegan.

Vegan PETA Campaign

Thank you Pako Mera for use of this awesome Vegan PETA Campaign picture.

While I know it is not for me, so long as they have done the research and know how to do it safely (selfishly I want them to  still be around to be my friends), I don’t really see why it should be any of my business. I might ask them about their choice, whether it was ethical or for health reasons, but that is out of curiosity. I have also been known to pick their brain for new-to-me recipes.

When eating is involved with a get together, I always check to see if there are any food restrictions so my guests can eat what I prepare for them. I’ve heard some hosts complain about what a pain this can be. Maybe it’s because I kept kosher for 8 years, but I simply don’t find it hard to accommodate. It gives me the opportunity to try out new dishes. All my friends know that they are probably guinea pigging new recipes whenever they come to my place for dinner anyway. (I have trained them well.)

I view dietary restrictions like the reverse of the television cooking show Chopped. Instead of having to use certain ingredients, they are forbidden in my mental game. Of course, at the beginning everything I want to make includes those ingredients, but I quickly get into the spirit. Having once made a pumpkin pie in which every single ingredient was a substitute, I’m up for the challenge.

Yesterday I watched the Academy Awards with Ms. M, as I do every year and have forever. She has fully embraced veganism, and I am more than willing to comply. I supplied the main course last night, which was the vegan version of my step-mom‘s uber-yummy tamale pie. I have loved that recipe since I was a little kid, and I was so glad to be able to share it with a dear friend.

Tamale Pie

What made it delicious instead of a soggy mess was the cool tofu trick I learned: freeze it! By freezing the tofu first, and then thawing it (and wringing it out like a saturated sponge), it completely changes the texture. It gives a lot more resistance when chewing, making it an excellent ground meat substitute.

I’ve always found the company I share for the Academy Awards more spectacular than the program itself. I hadn’t seen many of the nominees this year, but I always enjoy an evening that involves a good friend, delicious food, and an excellent opportunity to catch up.

What is your favorite vegetarian/vegan comfort food? or Am I the only one who consistently tries out new recipes on guests?

4 thoughts on “Let’s Eat”

  1. Yay! You are an amazing hostess, Tammy! I still think about that yummy vegan meal you made for us! From start to finish…yum! 🙂

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  2. Interesting tofu trick – I think I avoid trying things like that because I don’t want the tofu mess.

    Guinea pigging on guests…hmm… It’s become a favorite thing to do lately. I used to be terrified to try new thing on guests. Maybe I’ve just become more confident with my food prep on the first try or maybe it’s just the thrill of the challenge. Now I often use guests for a first-try because there are more people involved than when it’s just the three of us at home.

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    1. Until I learned the freezing trick, I was not a tofu fan. I’m all about texture, and slimy isn’t one of my favorites.

      For me, I think it is the thrill of the challenge when making new recipes for guests. They all know that if it goes horribly wrong I’ll order in pizza. I’ve yet to have to do that. It came close once, but I was able to doctor it into something edible.

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