Hi there! Much welcome to Vegan Recipes for Beginners! I’m in the process of adding lots and lots of content to this site, so bear with me while the site grows! And make sure to stroll by here often, as new and delicious recipes and suggestions will be added continuously.
Truly yours, Katrin 🙂
Have you decided to go vegan?
When you first consider entering a vegan lifestyle, and thereby avoiding all foodstuff that comes from the animal kingdom, it might appear a bit – overwhelming. We are so used to building our meals around the protein part: fish, meat, dairy and eggs. With those out of the list of available foods, what do I use instead?
What will I eat for breakfast? For lunch? For dinner? What’s a vegan snack like? Can I ever have a muffin again? Can I barbecue? Can I visit a restaurant?
Believe you me; I have struggled with all of these questions since my daughter became a vegan. I want us to eat good and healthy meals every day, which is always a challenge in our busy everyday lives, but even more so when you want to stay away from everything and anything that comes from animals. On this site I want to gather all that I’ve learnt (and am very much still learning!) when it comes to cook vegan style. Alas, vegan recipes for beginners!
Whatever your reason for going vegan is, ethics or health or both, you have a whole new world of food to discover, new ways of using ingredients, and some delicious new tastes to discover!
The term “vegan” seems to have seen the light of day in 1944, when The Vegan Society was founded. The founders searched for a single word to describe “non-dairy vegetarians”, and finally decided to use the first three and last two letters of “vegetarian”. However, that was not the start of veganism itself. In 1806 the earliest concepts of veganism began to emerge, when the poet Shelley and Dr William Lambe both publically objected to the use of eggs and dairy on ethical grounds.
When The Vegan Society became a registered charity in 1979, the definition of veganism was updated to read as follows:
“[…] a philosophy and way of living which seeks to exclude—as far as is possible and practicable—all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose; and by extension, promotes the development and use of animal-free alternatives for the benefit of humans, animals and the environment. In dietary terms it denotes the practice of dispensing with all products derived wholly or partly from animals.” (Source: https://www.vegansociety.com/society/history, 07/20/2015)
Why become a vegan?
According to The Vegan Society, there are four main reasons to become a vegan: for the animals, for the environment, for your health, and for the people. Let’s take a quick look into each of them.
For the animals
This is perhaps the most obvious reason, since you avoid all food that in some way is derived from animals. There are various arguments for this, one being that all sentient animals have a right to life and freedom. Being a vegan means that you seek to avoid all kinds of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals. That may also include not wearing leather or fur and feather, as well as wool and silk, or using products that have been tested on animals.
All meat production, as well as milk and egg production, leaves a much larger ecological footprint than vegetables grown for the same amount of food for human consumption. Becoming a vegan is the single most effective choice you can make to lessen your negative impact on the environment.
For your health
A plant-based diet is by many considered to be man’s natural diet by evolution. Be as it may with that, research shows that eating red meat may increase the risk of developing heart- and vascular disease as well as some forms of cancer (e g colon cancer). Eating a plant-based diet also provides you with all the proteins you need, and is rich in minerals, essential vitamins, antioxidants and dietary fibres. There are many testimonials to improved health conditions, bowels that start to work properly and allergies and constant fatigue syndromes that disappear on a vegan diet. People who suffer from gout or rheumatism are sometimes recommended a vegetarian/vegan diet and are often greatly helped by that.
With a fast growing human population on earth alongside a rise in socio-economic problems and global food and water insecurity, a vegan diet is an act of solidarity towards the poorest people on the planet. Land availability is a major concern for the future, and studies indicate that a vegan diet only requires about a third of the land needed for an animal-based diet. There is simply not enough land to feed the planet’s rapidly growing human population.