From Greggs sausage rolls to Marks & Spencer’s ‘Plant Kitchen’ range, it seems 2019 is going to be the year of veganism.
As we kick-off the New Year, we all make promises to change our life for the better. Many of us will give up the booze for a month as part of ‘Dry January’, however, there is a new phenomenon sweeping the globe – Veganuary. Thousands of people are vowing to go meat and dairy free for the first month of the year to give their 2019 a healthy start.
While vegan food is becoming increasingly popular in the UK, there are a range of delicious plant-based dishes from around the world that you simply have to try.
Caldo Verde – Portugal
Photo credit: QUOI Media Group via Flickr
Portugal is not necessarily the first place you would turn to for vegan-friendly cuisine but the country puts a veggie twist on a classic dish to create a delicious meal. Caldo verde soup warms the soul on those chilly evenings and has brought Portuguese families together for generations. Made of cabbage, potatoes, onions, olive oil and occasionally tomatoes it is cooked in a metal pot over an open fire and served with a thick slice of freshly baked bread.
Frijoles negros – Mexico
From tacos and burritos to a delightful side dish, frijoles negros have a special place in Mexican cuisine. The spicy black bean bowl combines garlic, peppers, onions, oregano, cumin and chilli to create a delicious accompaniment to your main meal. You could even have it on its own scooping it up with fresh tortilla chips.
Tabouleh – Morocco
Photo credit: Marco Verch via Flickr
Vibrant, green and full of flavour, tabouleh is a light Levantine salad perfect for a summer’s afternoon. Popular across the majority of Middle East and North Africa, each country has its own take on the dish. In Morocco, it is traditionally a blend of bulgar, parsley, mint, spring onion, tomatoes, lemon juice and hummus, don’t forget to mop of the remainders with a hot falafel.
Patatas bravas – Spain
One of Spain’s most beloved dishes from Seville to San Sebastian, you are likely to find a restaurant serving a portion of delicious patatas bravas. From the beachside tapas bars of Barcelona to the high end restaurants of Madrid, there is nothing more satisfying than a plate of crispy golden potatoes drenched in a spicy tomato sauce, layers of vegan mayonnaise and a sprinkling of parsley.
Spiced corn soup – Jamaica
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For an incredibly fiery soup you need to head to Jamaica. The country is famous for its love of hot food but its spiced corn soup really hits the spot. Made with cayenne pepper and Scotch bonnet chilli, this broth certainly packs a punch. Combined with garlic, coconut milk, fresh corn, potatoes, split peas and butternut squash it brings together a wealth of Caribbean flavours.
Çiğ köfte – Turkey
Okay, we’ll level with you, a food with a name that literally translate into “raw meatball” is not going to be top of your Veganuary menu. Fear not, however, as a traditional Turkish Çiğ köfte is actually made from bulgar wheat rice instead of meat. This delightfully spicy snack is often paired with a pomegranate sauce and rolled in a lettuce leaf.
Caponata – Italy
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Among the vast array of cheeses and cured meat there are some delicious vegan Italian dishes and one of the best is caponata. Originating in Sicily, it is essentially a cooked vegetable salad with a particular focus on aubergine which is cooked with celery, red wine vinegar and capers. There are different variations of caponata but the Sicilian version adds tomatoes, raisins, basil and pine nuts before served with an obligatory slice of ciabatta.
Falafel and hummus – Greece
We couldn’t leave this list without indulging in the king of vegan food – falafel and hummus. It is a combination so perfect that the mouth is already at the prospect. Greece renowned for its falafel making prowess turning chickpeas and spices into little ball of Heaven and when dipped in hummus or served in a wrap you are in Veganuary paradise.
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