Having a variety of protein sources in our diet is beneficial for our health and our tastebuds. Including plant sources of protein a couple of times a week keeps our hearts, arteries, brains, digestive systems, waist-lines and bank accounts happy!
TOP TIPS (scroll to the bottom for recipes)
Tofu & Tempeh
Ensure it is certified organic or states it is non-genetically modified (GM).
Ensure tofu ingredients state soybean not soy extract. I'm enjoying Earth Source from McLaren Vale Foodland at the moment.
Plain tofu and tempeh have no flavour so will absorb the flavour of whatever they are cooked with therefore are great in curries, chilli and stews. Nutrisoy Organic Tempeh Plain is a good one from McLaren Vale Organic Store.
Firm tofu will hold its shape when cooked whereas silken tofu will break up and is good for creamy desserts, smoothies and as a yoghurt substitute in recipes.
Tempeh has more texture than tofu so is great as a meat alternative. Crumble it up to replace mince in cottage pies and bolognaises.
Marinated tofu or tempeh is an easy option for BBQs, stir fries, baked in the oven if you're having a roast or even cold in a salad. Do check the ingredients of the marinade for any nasties like colourings, flavourings, added sugar or preservatives. An easy DIY marinade that I use all the time is:
2 tablespoons neutral-flavoured oil such as macadamia oil
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon paprika or smoked paprika
This will be enough for about 300g tofu or tempeh.
Lentils, beans & chickpeas (legumes)
A great source of protein either incorporated into a meal such as kidney bean nachos or as a stand-alone such as hummus.
Keep a few tins of beans in the cupboard for emergency meals.
Before cooking, dried beans, whole lentils and chickpeas must be soaked for 12 hours. If you have time semi-germinate for another 12 hours to reduce their fartability!
Red lentils and split peas don't need to be soaked, just rinse and cook.
A pressure cooker is a very quick way to cook legumes.
Once cooked all legumes can be frozen into whatever size portions you like so they are easy to use.
Tempeh Chilli - this is a thermomix recipe which can be adapted (it's in the Vegetarian Thermomix book or look on cookidoo)
Cottage Pie - proper comfort food
Spiced Carrot & Lentil Soup - made this on the weekend, it's delicious!
Black Bean Burgers - I've shared this before but just incase you haven't got around to trying it...
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