Today is Day Two of the Vegan Month of Food! Hurray! This is my first year taking part in the Vegan MoFo and although I’m still a little intimidated by the prospect of writing about food on an everyday basis, things are going well so far. Now, let’s have a look at today’s daily prompt, AKA “How to Make Friends” or, as they put it on the interwebs:
What’s your go-to “impress me” meal?
I decided to cheat a little bit for this one. Well, not cheat, per se; it’s just that my interpretation of the word “meal” may be a bit more literal than was originally intended by the fine MoFo people, because my favorite impressive meal is… brunch.
I love brunch, though I didn’t eat it much as a kid. In my family, brunch was something that happened either on Mother’s Day (and not every year at that) or once in a blue moon at Cora. What can I say? I just didn’t grow up in a very brunchy household. In fact, I don’t think I started truly appreciating brunch until just a few years ago, when I started taking an interest in veganism, and particularly in Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s books, which feature brunch recipes, both savory and sweet, in copious amounts.
I think the main reason I love brunch so much is how varied it is (or can be, anyway). I love being able, if I feel so inclined, to pile up a savory protein, a tasty starch, something sweet AND some fruit or veggies on a plate. It’s like a little plate party! (Also, there’s generally coffee. I like coffee.)
Another thing I enjoy about brunch is how it tends to get other people really excited. Maybe it’s because contrary to breakfast, lunch and dinner, it’s a meal most of us don’t have every day? Anyway, I like it.
Last but not least, brunch provides ample opportunity to impress (see what I did there?), especially when served to omnivores. What’s that? A frittata made from tofu? Perfectly fluffy pancakes that are also egg- and dairy-free? A potato hash with sausages and a creamy sauce? Yep, yep and yep. And it’s all vegan. I love it. I even get a little smug about it.
And now, without further ado, here are some brunch pictures.
I made this frittata pretty recently for an omni friend who came over for (you guessed it) brunch. It’s the Swiss Chard Frittata recipe by Isa Chandra, and it’s delicious. The friend in question even said it tasted eggy!
The pancakes on the left were heavily inspired by the Banana Pecan Pancakes from Isa’s book Vegan with a Vengeance (the new edition). And on the right, you have a picture of a simple brunch I made for my partner’s last birthday: the Chipotle Sausage Hash from Isa Does It, topped with cubed avocado and a creamy tahini-based sauce, plus grapefruit triangles, orange juice and coffee.
Tofu scramble! I care a lot about tofu scramble. It was one of the first plant-based dishes I became truly comfortable making without a recipe, as seems to be the case for a lot of vegans.
I like tofu scramble because it’s easy, cheap, delicious and super versatile—though nine times out of 10, mine is a combination of firm tofu, garlic, fresh tomatoes, lemon juice, dried basil, nooch, turmeric for color, salt and pepper. I just dunk it all in a hot, lightly oiled pan and sauté the mixture, stirring often, until it smells just right. I like to wilt in some spinach at the end and serve the scramble with avocado slices and a toasted English muffin brushed with olive oil. Or toast. Toast is always good.
Sometimes, somebody else will make me vegan brunch (in this case, it was Maya), and I’ll be totally impressed! This is Maya’s own tofu scramble, served alongside avocado, sliced baguette, homemade pâté, a berry smoothie and some kombucha.
And of course, I love going out for brunch, too! If I’m looking to impress some omnivores, Aux Vivres is definitely a great choice. Their brunch platters look and taste fantastic (even though I sometimes think they’re a bit heavy on the salad). Pictured here: Huevos Rancheros (corn tortillas, refried black beans, tofu scramble, sour cream, salsa, guac and sweet potatoes) and Le Complet (tofu scramble, tempeh bacon, cornbread, sweet potatoes and salad).
Well, that’s it for today! Now I’m off to make lunch for tomorrow. And who knows? Maybe that recipe will make it into tomorrow’s MoFo post.
Thanks for reading,