Vegan food is not something that comes naturally to me (how do you milk an almond???). My exposure to it was certainly limited growing up in Hamilton, one of the livestock capitals of the world. But a vegetarian flatmate and the lunch special at the Curry Pot (Naan, rice, raita, a chicken curry and a vegetarian curry for $9.90!) have shaken my ideals… “How does the vegetarian curry taste better than the chicken one?”
It seems to me that innovation and a meatless meal go hand in hand. Vegan cooks can’t rely on a flavoursome meat centrepiece to produce great tasting food, and are driven to pioneer new flavours as a result. And the economics of a triangular food chain mean that the herbs, spices and vegetables necessary for a meal packed with flavour will never cost as much as the cut of meat required to achieve the same. Give this chickpea salad a go. The lemon and parsley dressing gives it as much punch as your favourite marinated chicken, trust me.
** note, as I was feeding 8 hungry engineers, I caved and included some seared chicken thighs, but these are by no means necessary.