The vegan diet — a vegetarian diet also devoid of eggs, dairy, honey, and other animal by-products — is all the rage. It’s been featured on Oprah, Ellen, and Martha and it’s making its way into the mainstream. On this week’s Cooking with the Moms radio podcast, we sit down with our nutrition intern, Ashley, to chat about her self-imposed Vegan Diet Challenge. For Lent, Ashley decided to give up meat and follow a vegan diet. Through her month-long culinary adventure, she sampled new foods and flavors, read food labels like it was nobody’s business, and came to the realization that eating in restaurants was “nearly impossible.”
One of the recipes she enjoyed several times during her 30-day meatless mission was Eggplant Scallopini from Molly Katzen’s award-winning Moosewood Cookbook. Instead of topping it with grated Parmesan cheese, she uses nutritional yeast.
Makes 4 to 6 Servings
- 1 cup chopped onion
- 3 cloves crushed garlic
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 bay leaf
- 4 cups peeled, cubed eggplant
- 1 pound chopped mushrooms
- 2 medium tomatoes, chopped
- 1 cup chopped green bell pepper
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- black pepper, to taste
- 1 cup Marsala wine
- 1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley
1. Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy saucepan or Dutch oven.
2. Add the onions, garlic, ½ teaspoon salt, and bay leaf and sauté five minutes. Add eggplant and another ½ teaspoon salt, stir, and cook, covered, for ten minutes stirring occasionally.
3. Add mushrooms, green pepper, tomatoes, tomato paste, basil, and pepper. Mix well and simmer, covered, for ten minutes.
4. Add Marsala and parsley. Cover and simmer over low heat, about 15-20 minutes. Serve over whole wheat pasta and sprinkle with vitamin B12-fortified nutritional yeast.
Ashley turned to vegan expert, Isa Chandra Moskowitz from Post Punk Kitchen for cooking inspiration. Isa has written a bunch of cookbooks including two of Ashley’s favorites: Vegan with a Vengeance and Veganomicon: The Ultimate Vegan Cookbook. Be sure to tune in to Cooking with the Moms to hear all about Ashley’s vegan eating adventures, her true confession (“I hate tofu”), and her favorite vegan treat, Big Gigantoid Crunchy Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies.