21 January 2021, 14:55 | Updated: 22 January 2021, 16:52
If you’ve recently gone vegan and are missing your favourite meals, it couldn’t be simpler to veganize them!
With Veganuary in full swing, more of us than ever are currently following a plant-based diet.
A whopping 500,000 people signed up to give up animal products for the month, and the huge growth in popularity of the vegan diets over the past years means you can now buy a vegan version of pretty much everything.
As well as the huge range of new products launched this month (hello, vegan Krispy Kremes), home-cooked food is now easier than ever thanks to the wide-range of vegan ingredients available at supermarkets.
Read more: The biggest, best and most exciting launches for Veganuary 2021
One of the hardest things about going vegan can often be the cravings for your old favourite dishes – so we caught up with Aimee Ryan (@WallflowerKitchen), author or plant-based recipe book Great British Vegan, to find out how to veganize some classic British meals.
She told us: “It really doesn’t seem like there are limits to what you can veganize anymore!
“I can’t even think of a recipe where I would see no way to re-create it. However, some specific adapted recipes may require more ingredients or more steps and cooking time which can make it slightly more time consuming but not difficult.
“Once you get used to swapping dairy, meat and eggs for their plant-based equivalents, you will get a feel for how easy it is to re-create your favourite dishes. “
See below for her delicious recipes:
Vegan Beer-Battered Tofish and Chips
Not only does this beer-battered tofu look like the real deal but it also has added fish flavour, thanks to the nori sheet. Served with probably the best chips you’ll ever make – which take a bit of effort but are totally worth it – and super-simple minted mushy peas.
Preparation time: 20 minutes,
Cooking time: 30 minutes
For the tofish:
1 x 390g/13¾oz block of extra firm tofu, drained and patted dry
1 sheet of nori
juice of 1 lemon
80g/2¾oz (scant ²⁄3 cup) plain (all-purpose) flour
50g/1¾oz (½ cup) cornflour (cornstarch)
150ml/5fl oz (scant ²⁄3 cup)
vegan-friendly pale ale
For the chips
1kg/2lb 4oz King Edward potatoes, peeled and cut into chunky chips
750ml/26fl oz (3¼ cups) vegetable oil, for frying
For the mushy peas
1 tbsp dairy-free butter
200g/7oz (1½ cups) frozen petit pois
A handful of fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
1 tsp white (distilled) vinegar sea salt and ground black pepper
1 lemon, cut into wedges
1. Rinse the chips in cold water to remove excess starch. Add them to a large saucepan of cold, salted water and bring to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 5–8 minutes until just softened. Drain, pat dry and arrange on a baking tray. Refrigerate for at least an hour or, covered, overnight.
2. Make the mushy peas. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over a medium heat. Add the peas and cook for 5 minutes until soft. Add the mint and vinegar and, using a potato masher, crush the peas until mushy. Season then place a lid on the pan to keep them warm.
3. To cook the chips, heat the oil to approximately 180ºC/350ºF and carefully lower half of the potatoes into the oil. Cook for 4–5 minutes, or until they are crisp and golden. Use a slotted spoon to carefully remove the chips from the oil and drain on some paper towel. Repeat with the remaining potatoes. Season generously with salt.
4. Whilst the chips are cooking, prepare the tofish. Cut the block in half horizontally, then create fillet shapes, triangles or just rectangles. Using scissors, cut the nori sheet into matching shapes, so that it sits neatly on top of the tofu. This will resemble fish skin and also adds a fish flavour. Squeeze half a lemon over the tofu pieces then pat the nori shapes on top, so they’re fairly secure.
5. Use the same pot of oil as you used to fry the chips, and reheat it until it’s reached approximately 160ºC/315ºF. Make the batter by whisking together the flour, cornflour and ale, then season. Dip the tofu shapes into the batter and then carefully transfer them to the hot oil. Cook for 3–4 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from the oil with a slotted spoon.
6. Sprinkle the tofish with salt and vinegar and serve with the chips, peas, lemon wedges and mayonnaise.
Vegan Full Engish
Weekends aren’t the same without a fry-up. This vegan version will cure your cravings and is packed with plant-based protein and fibre.
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes
2–4 Vegan Sausages
1 tbsp vegetable oil
8 cherry tomatoes
2 large flat mushrooms, stalks removed and peeled
1 x 400g/14oz can baked beans
2 handfuls of spinach, washed
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
8 Crispy Vegan Bacon Strips (recipe below)
1 recipe quantity Tofu Scramble (recipe below)
Sea salt and ground black pepper
Buttered toast, to serve
1. Preheat the grill to medium–high. Put the vegan sausages in a large roasting tray and drizzle with the oil. Grill for 10 minutes, then turn the sausages and add the tomatoes and mushrooms. Cook for 5–8 minutes. Turn the grill off but leave the tray under it to keep everything warm.
2. In a small saucepan, warm the baked beans for 5 minutes over a low–medium heat.
3. Place the spinach, the balsamic vinegar and a splash of water in a small saucepan. Put the lid on and cook for 2 minutes over a medium heat, until the spinach has wilted.
4. Divide the spinach between the plates followed by the beans, sausages, tomatoes, mushrooms, bacon and tofu scramble or fried eggs. Season with salt and pepper and serve with buttered toast .
Crispy bacon strips recipe
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp smoked paprika
½ tsp sea salt
4 sheets rice wrappers
1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC fan/200ºC/400ºF/gas 6 and line a large baking tray with greaseproof paper.
2. Mix the oil, soy sauce, vinegar, maple syrup, paprika and salt together in a shallow dish.
3. Stack two sheets of the rice paper on top of one another and soak in a bowl of cold water briefly to soften them. Using kitchen scissors, cut the sheets into bacon-sized strips.
4. Dip each strip into the mixture, coating the paper on each side, before laying on the prepared baking tray. Use a pastry brush, dipped into the mixture, to give them a second coating on the baking tray.
5. Bake for 5–8 minutes, watching carefully to make sure they don’t burn. They should be crispy and textured with a good crunch. Serve immediately as they will lose their crunch after a few hours.
Vegan tofu Scrambled ‘egg’ recipe
This scramble tastes just like the real deal, especially if you can get hold of some black salt, which adds an eggy flavour. It’s delicious served on toast or as part of a full English breakfast.
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 10 minutes
1 tbsp dairy-free butter
1 x 396g/14oz block of firm tofu, drained
¼ tsp kala namak (black salt)
1 tsp ground turmeric
A pinch of ground black pepper
A few drops of unsweetened dairy-free milk (optional)
fresh chives, chopped (optional), to serve
1. Heat the butter in a frying pan and then crumble the tofu into small pieces before adding to the pan.
2. Add the black salt, turmeric and pepper and cook for 7 minutes. Pour in a little milk if you want a creamier consistency.
3. To serve, add some extra ground black pepper and sprinkle with a few chopped chives, if you like.
Go Vegan without giving up your favourite dishes, with the simple plant-based recipe book Great British Vegan by Aimee Ryan, out now; click here to buy.
The best vegan wine and Prosecco for Veganuary 2021