August 26, 2011

Dawn is not only meeting our Vegetarian Healthy Habit goal, she's exceeding it by going vegetarian two days per week. She reported back that she loved last week's Pasta with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Feta Cheese (and so did her partner!) and enhanced it by adding olives and roasted eggplant (which she cubed, tossed with olive oil and garlic powder and roasted at a high temperature).

When I asked what she's enjoying most about this project, she said, "The most fun thing is trying things I haven't tried before and feeling comfortable tweaking recipes." Sometimes when we get bored with our home cooking, we just need a reason to try something new. There's plenty of non-veg recipes out there, but can we remove the chicken, beef or pork, and still get wonderful flavor?

Sure we can!

In fact, many cultures around the world cook with more vegetables than we do, using meat as a seasoning. The first week Dawn played with Mexican flavors (enchiladas, chiles rellenos), and last week we enjoyed French-inspired cold lentil salad, and a Greek pasta. This week, Dawn is keen to play with whole grains like quinoa and wheatberries, and for that, we're grabbing our passports and going abroad again.

Vegetarianism is widely practiced throughout India, and Indian cooks are known for their use of spices, and vegetables and pulses. Whole grains? Not so much, but I had a feeling with a little poking around cookinglight.com and the Internet in general, someone has fused Indian flavors onto the whole grains Dawn wants to explore.

A few of our favorite whole grain recipes with Indian flavors:

Curried Quinoa with Cucumber Mint Raita and Indian Spiced Grilled Baby Squash

Indian Style Tofu and Cauliflower with Chutney

Curried Wheatberry Salad

Toasted Farro with Roasted Vegetables and Fennel and Butter Beans (ok, not so Indian...but very delicious-sounding and Dawn loves Butter Beans)

 

How's your vegetarian month going? Isn't it just wonderful eating this time of year? And the next few months get even better...

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