Archive for the 'Vegetarian' Category

Jewish Vegetarian Chef on Iron Chef America

Tomorrow night on the Food Network, Amanda Cohen will become the first vegetarian chef to compete on Iron Chef America. After seeing an episode of Top Chef last year in which chefs had to make a vegan dish for guest Natalie Portman, I can see that the combination of a vegetarian and a reality cooking show is going to make for good television!

Here’s what I wrote about Cohen after she was named as one of the Heeb100 in 2009:

New Web Site Hosts Updated List of Veg-Friendly Kosher Restaurants in the NYC Area

Cross-posted to heebnvegan

Last year, I blogged about a list of vegan, vegetarian, and vegetarian-friendly restaurants in the New York City area that have kosher certification. Cathy Resler, organizer of the NYC Jewish Veg*ns MeetUp group, has created a Web site featuring an updated version of her list. It’s now quite easy to navigate through the myriad options by alphabetical, geographic, or cuisine-based sorting.

As I mentioned in my previous post, “If you’re looking for a kosher establishment with plentiful vegetarian and vegan options, there’s no need to check both vegan and kosher restaurant guides when you can check only one list.”

Eating Kosher and Veggie Across South America: The Good, The Bland and The Ugly

This entry is cross-posted at marriedwithbackpacks.com

It’s now been seven weeks backpacking through this meat-lovers paradise, tough going for a pair of Jews spoiled by home cooking and New York’s great vegetarian restaurants. Vegetarian cuisine in Peru and Bolivia is, like their economies, ‘developing.’ We were pleasantly surprised at the number of vegetarian restaurants in Lima, Arequipa and Cusco. In many of them we had a set menu consisting of a soup, a main, tea and possibly desert for $1.50-$5. Now it could be that South American vegetarian cuisine is relatively immature, or did the Spaniards run off with all the Inca’s seasoning as well as their gold… because all most all of our Andean meals were quite bland. The vegetables or grain soups would have been enlivened by adding almost anything. The mains usually consisted of rice, eggs and glisteningly oily fried vegetables. Most of the vegetarian restaurants rely heavily on eggs and cheese, so if you are travelling vegan, it might end up being the rice and oily vegetables for meal after meal. If you risk eating at a non-vegetarian restaurant, the vegetarian menu usually consists of pizza and spaghetti. I should mention that it wasn’t all bad news, we did enjoy a veggie version of a traditional Arequipa dish (at a restaurant called Lakshmivan), a large pepper stuffed with vegetables, tofu and chillies, as well as scrumptious burritos at the Hearts Café in Ollantaytambo.

When it comes to snacks there is more to get excited about.

Buying Tips and Seasonal Recipes for Fall Vegetables

Fall vegetables bring to mind the hearth, coziness, beautiful autumn colors, hearty food and interesting one dish and multi-dish menus.  We think about roasting, caramelizing, thick rich stocks, braising and sautéing when we think about the preparation of root vegetables and the other succulent vegetables which brighten up farm stands and markets all over the country at this time of the year.

I hope that all of you enjoy Fall Vegetables as much as I do. What’s fun about the change of seasons is that we are forced into creative ways to cook with the new bounty of the season. In this way, your food is never boring and you don’t get stuck eating the same foods day in and day out.

Kosher Veganarchy in the U.K.!

Cross-posted to heebnvegan

Last month, the Redwood Wholefood Company, a vegan food manufacturer in Britain, issued a press release announcing “one of the first times that a UK manufacturer of vegetarian and vegan products has undergone the kosher certification process.” Celebrity animal rights advocate Heather Mills, who owns Redwood, said, “Achieving kosher certification is an endorsement of the care and attention we give to the sourcing of ingredients and to the manufacturing of our products.”

Perhaps a press release should be taken with a grain of kosher salt. While it is commendable that Redwood has reached out to clientele seeking a hechsher, kosher-certified vegan food is likely not a total anomaly in England. The press release highlights the rarity of kosher certification for companies that chiefly focus on vegetarian and vegan foods, but surely there must be a fair number of kosher foods that are vegan in the U.K. I took the below photo last year to show off the kosher section of a London supermarket, and I’m guessing that at the very least, the matzos that my friend was holding were both hechsher-bearing and vegan!

At Vegans’ Weddings: Beef or Tofu?

“I know it’s your day, but it’s not all about you…Why have a wedding if you’re going to be like that [serve only vegetarian options]?  Just print a bumper sticker.”

Did this article that concluded with this choice comment in today’s NY Times Sunday Styles section annoy others as much as it annoyed me?  Of course weddings should reflect one’s values, so if you’re kosher, or vegan, or vegetarian, why wouldn’t you serve kosher, vegan, or vegetarian food?  As the vegan Kathleen Mink quoted in the article said, it was  a “no brainer” to have a vegan menu at her and her husband’s wedding.  But another vegan pastry chef served meat at her wedding because she was afraid celebrity chefs like Eric Ripert and Daniel Boulud would think she and her husband “were crazy” if they didn’t serve meat. 

How My Dog Turned Me into a Vegetarian

Flynn

Due to my son being an only child with little perspective on living with siblings- friendships, fights and loyalty, my husband and I adopted mans “best friend” with the hope it would become Jonah’s “little brother”. The big hope was that our gorgeous red and white cocker spaniel rescue dog was to would teach my son the responsibilities of caring for another dependent being. We had images of my son walking and feeding our new addition to the family.
What actually transpired was far from my vivid imagination. Flynn gravitated to me – I became his world and he, my shadow. Irrespective of my mood, Flynn was always happy to be with me and tail wagging to prove his point.

My Interview About Judaism and Vegetarianism on Our Hen House’s Podcast

Cross-posted to heebnvegan

My interview from earlier this month was featured on Our Hen House‘s podcast this weekend. We talked about Torah teachings about compassion for animals, how well Judaism and vegetarianism mesh together, kosher slaughter, the new Jewish food movement, and vegan versions of traditional Jewish foods.

YID DISH: RED CABBAGE COLESLAW

Red Cabbage Slaw

This is cross-posted at The Fink Farms Dirt.

A cabbage harvest in July?

In California, it works. (We planted late in a mild winter.)

That means just in time for outdoor Shabbes dinners, we have the basic ingredient for coleslaw.

But with this gem-like vegetable sitting on my kitchen counter, I couldn’t bear the thought of traditional coleslaw: cabbage shreds drowned in mayonnaise and sugar. I decided to celebrate the color.  The following recipe is adapted from several sources.

Yid.Dish: Chilled Peanut-Sesame Noodles

This is a wonderful Parve side dish that I’ve been making for the past five years. Ask anyone in my family and they’ll tell you it’s a favorite at home. (My dad especially loves it). This recipe is simple and delicious and can be made up to a day in advance.

Yid.Dish: Summer Quinoa Salad

Cross-posted to Orange Ideal

For my first recipe post on The Jew and the Carrot, I thought I’d start off with something versatile. I sampled a version of this quinoa recipe while browsing at my local Whole Foods and then came home and made my own version. It’s great served as a cold salad or as a warm side dish and it is ideal for all of those summer picnics and pot lucks you have on your calendar. Quinoa packs up really easily and this one is so full of veggies, colors, and flavors that it’s sure to be a hit!

Red, White, & Blue Vegan Shabbat Dinner

Photos: Lauren Krohn

The last time I hosted a vegan Shabbat dinner for friends, I planned it a couple of weeks in advance. Although I only came up with the idea of hosting this past Friday’s dinner four days earlier, there was still an “agenda.” First, I wanted to rely chiefly on produce purchased at the Union Square farmers’ market earlier in the day. Second, I wanted to use some red, white, and blue foods, as Independence Day was just two days away.

The Power of Reading

In November of last year I read a story by a Holocaust survivor describing how, even though they were starving, she and other Jewish prisoners refused an offering of snails from the Nazis. The reason? Snails are not kosher.

I sat back and my heart sank.  I’d never really thought about what I ate, food meant nothing to me but a few moments of taste. I felt guilty and I wanted to change. I still wanted to eat good food of course, but now I wanted my choices to matter and I felt deeply that I had no excuses.

Do Fish Feel Pain?

Cross-posted to heebnvegan

For those of us who base our total or partial vegetarianism on the ethical principle of not inflicting suffering on animals who are capable of suffering, one question deserves to be asked but is frequently relegated to the realm of “ignorance is bliss”: Do fish feel pain?

In April, Oxford University Press published Do Fish Feel Pain? by animal welfare scientist Victoria Braithwaite. Many people think the answer to that question is obvious, but depending on whom you ask, that “obvious” answer varies considerably. For once, we have a credible book that attempts to answer that question with science.