Tag Archives: oil

Easy Egg-Free Mayonnaise

20 Jul

Mayonnaise (or mayo for short) is a staple in households all over the world. Said to have originated in Spain, this creamy white condiment is used in various dishes both savory and sweet (source).

In traditional mayo, the lecithin contained in egg yolks serves as not only a thickener but an emulsifier, which stabilizes the mixture, allowing it to hold its shape. In other words, when something is emulsified, it allows two naturally repelling liquids (i.e. oil and water) to stick together. So how does one go about making an egg-free mayo? The answer: use alternative sources of fat and lecithin. Oil may be used in place of the fat. With regard to lecithin, various foods such as raw cauliflower and mustard naturally contain lecithin, but perhaps the most concentrated sources are soy and sunflower lecithin. These alternatives serve as excellent stand-ins and flawlessly replace the eggs.

This super easy Egg-Free Mayonnaise is made in under a minute. The result is a light, creamy, cholesterol-free mayonnaise that looks and tastes like it came straight from the grocery store. If you’re feeling fancy, you can easily flavor your mayo with whatever you choose such as garlic or fresh herbs.

Egg-Free Mayonnaise

Easy Egg-Free Mayonnaise
Yields just over 1 cup

1/2 cup organic unsweetened soy milk
1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon liquid soy lecithin*
1/2 scant teaspoon salt
1 cup organic canola oil

Using a blender with a 2-piece lid, combine first four ingredients and purée until smooth, approximately 10 seconds.

With the blender still running, carefully remove center part of lid and slowly add oil in a steady stream. Watch mixture closely and stop blender once mayonnaise becomes thick. You will know it is ready when the mixture no longer blends. This should take approximately 5-10 seconds. Be careful not to over-blend as doing so will result in a runny mayonnaise.

Scoop mixture into an air-tight container and store in refrigerator. Mayonnaise should keep for 2-3 weeks.

*If preferred, you may substitute 1/2 teaspoon dried mustard in place of the soy lecithin. Resulting mayonnaise will have a slightly yellow color and may not be as thick.

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5 Tips for Eating Healthier

1 Dec

The colder months bring with them the holidays, which just so happen to revolve around a plethora of food. Having enjoyed my Thanksgiving feast just a few days ago, I feel that eating healthy for a while is in order.

One in three American children is overweight or obese, which is nearly triple the rate seen in 1963 (source). As for adults, over 35% are obese according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. With obesity comes a gamut of health issues including type 2 diabetes, heart disease and strokes, in addition to certain types of cancer (source). In the past, these weight-related issues were seen only in adults. Now, however, it is becoming common to see them in children; a huge red flag signalling that we need to do something about this.

The good news is that much of the obesity epidemic can be fought with a lifestyle change, and this means eating healthier. Food is the fuel of life, and what we choose to eat plays a significant role in our health.

While I don’t always post the healthiest of recipes here on Vegan Food Addict, I try to make it a habit of following the tips below in my personal life.

Fresh Sage, Rosemary and Salt

1. Cut the salt
Keep that blood pressure in check by watching your sodium intake. Too much sodium not only results in high blood pressure, it also contributes to kidney disease. Sodium is a vital nutrient, however, those age 50 and younger need less than 2,300mg per day, and those 51 and older need even less, approximately 1,500mg per day (source). When cooking, use a light hand when adding salt or soy sauce, and use products that are low sodium (i.e. soups and vegetable broth). Some of the worst high-sodium offenders are cheese, meat, prepared and processed foods. Add more flavor without salt by using fresh herbs, garlic, onion, citrus juice or white vinegar.

2. Choose unprocessed foods with fewer ingredients
Many of us have already made it a habit of reading nutrition labels. Whether it be to avoid products with specific ingredients, or to buy something with a particular vitamin or nutrient, we need to be aware of what, exactly, we are putting into our bodies. As a general rule, it is best to buy those products which are unprocessed and have the fewest ingredients; ingredients you can pronounce! That way, you should know exactly what you are eating.

3. Substitute wheat for white
Ditch those white products for wheat. Instead of all-purpose flour use whole wheat flour, and rather than white rice use brown rice. All-purpose flour and white rice are typically bleached and stripped of their nutrients, and as a result, really don’t offer much natural nutritional value. When compared to all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour provides more Potassium and Protein, in addition to more Vitamin B6 and Magnesium (source). When compared to white rice, brown rice provides more Dietary Fiber, Vitamin B6 and Magnesium (source). Should you dislike the hearty taste and texture of whole wheat products, try using white whole wheat flour as it has both a lighter flavor and texture, and serves as an excellent stand-in for all-purpose and regular whole wheat flours. When making baked goods with whole wheat flour, the use of additional liquid may be necessary.

4. Sweeten naturally
Rather than using refined sugar and other chemical-laden sweeteners, try fruits such as apricots, bananas or dates. Not only are they excellent sweeteners, they also offer additional nutritional value including Vitamins A, C (source), Potassium (source), Magnesium and B6 (source). There are many fruits you can use — experiment and see what you like best!

5. Bake, don’t fry
Reduce your oil consumption. This includes oil of any type, in addition to butter and margarine. Nearly 100% fat, oil should only be consumed in small amounts. In fact, just one tablespoon olive oil provides about one-quarter of your daily recommended amount of fat (source). Rather than frying, prepare your food as you normally would, however, lightly coat with the oil of your choice and bake until crispy. If you prefer to cook without any added oil, wrap in foil and bake in the oven until cooked to your satisfaction.

Have additional tips? Comment below and let us know about them!

Tofu and Sausage Sauté

2 Feb

I love weekends. Why? Because I have time to cook and savor a sizeable breakfast. And if you don’t know by now, I love my breakfast!

A little note: anytime I mention sausage, cheese, or any other typically animal-based product, I am referring to the vegan version.

Tofu and Sausage Sauté is one of the most popular recipes of mine. My family, herbivores and omnivores alike, always devour it. This protein-packed dish is chock full of tofu, “sausage”, greens and “cheese”, most of which are excellent sources of protein; topped with a delicious, savory sauce. Tofu and Sausage Sauté is perfect for anyone, especially those who live an active lifestyle. Following is the estimated amount of protein this dish provides:

  • Tofu: fried tofu provides over 67 grams of protein per 14-ounce serving (source)
  • Vegan Sausage: seitan-based sausage contains approximately 26 grams of protein per 4-ounce serving (source)
  • Spinach or Kale: raw spinach has 1.35 grams of protein per 1-1/2 cup serving (source) and raw kale has 3.3 grams of protein per 1½ cup serving (source)
  • Vegan Cheese: vegan cheese typically contains approximately 1 gram of protein per 1/4 cup serving (source, source and source)

Tofu & Sausage Sauté

Tofu and Sausage Sauté

1 (14-ounce) package extra firm tofu, drained
2 tablespoons canola or peanut oil
1/2 cup crumbled or diced vegan sausage
2 tablespoons diced white onion
1-1/2 cups chopped fresh spinach or kale
1/4 cup shredded or diced vegan cheese (I prefer mozzarella or monterey jack)

Sauce:
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons yellow mustard
1 teaspoon dried dill weed
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Press tofu by wrapping in cloth or paper towels and weighing down with a couple of plates for 20-30 minutes. After this time, cut tofu into 1/2-inch cubes and set aside.

Meanwhile, prepare sauce by combining soy sauce, mustard, dill weed and garlic powder in a small glass and mixing until combined. Set aside.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add tofu and cook until light brown on all sides, turning occasionally. Add sausage and onion to the pan and cook, stirring often until onion is translucent and sausage begins to brown, approximately 5-10 minutes. Add spinach or kale and continue to cook for an additional 5 minutes, or just until tender. Remove from heat and add the sauce, stirring to coat. Finish by sprinkling cheese over top and mixing in if desired.

Handy Guide to Cooking Oils

13 Dec

While the verdict is out on the necessity of consuming oil, it is known that the saturated fat contained in oil is necessary for your brain to function properly. Some oils (coconut and palm) containing high amounts of saturated fats can be bad if consumed in excess, but others (avocado, canola, corn, cottonseed, mustard, olive, peanut, safflower, soy and sunflower) containing low amounts of saturated fats and high amounts of unsaturated fats (such as mono and polyunsaturated) are seen as more healthy (source).

Oils can be used in a variety of applications, some of which include lip balms, lotions and various food items. Before delving into the types of oil and what cooking purposes they can be used for, we must first understand what Smoke Point is. Smoke Point is “the temperature at which heated fat or oil starts to break down and burn, giving an unpleasant taste to food.” (source) Heating an oil changes its characteristics, sometimes causing it to lose nutritional value and promote toxicity. Therefore some oils can be used for high-temperature frying, whereas others should not. It should also be noted that unrefined oils should not be used for frying (source).

Below is a list of the most commonly used plant-based cooking oils along with their smoke points and culinary uses:

Type of Oil Smoke Point Uses
Almond 430 °F (221 °C) Baking, sauces, flavoring
Avocado 520 °F (271 °C) Frying, sauteing, dipping oil, salad oil
Canola 468 °F (242 °C) Frying, baking, salad dressings
Coconut 351 °F (177 °C) Commercial baked goods, candy and sweets, whipped toppings, nondairy coffee creamers, shortening
Corn 457 °F (236 °C) Frying, baking, salad dressings, margarine, shortening
Cottonseed 421 °F (216 °C) Margarine, shortening, salad dressings, commercially fried products
Flax Seed (Unrefined) 225 °F (107 °C) Baking, salad oil, flavoring
Grape Seed 399 °F (204 °C) Cooking, salad dressings, margarine
Hemp 329 °F (165 °C) Cooking, salad dressings
Mustard 489 °F (254 °C) Cooking, frying, deep frying, salads, dressings
Olive (Extra Virgin) 374 °F (190 °C) Cooking, salad oils, margarine
Olive (Refined) 437 °F (225 °C) Saute, stir frying, cooking, salad oils, margarine
Palm 446 °F (230 °C) Cooking, flavoring, vegetable oil, shortening
Peanut 448 °F (231 °C) Frying, cooking, salad oils, margarine
Rice Bran 489 °F (254 °C) Cooking, frying, deep frying, salads, dressings
Safflower 509 °F (265 °C) Cooking, salad dressings, margarine
Sesame 351 °F (177 °C) Cooking, salad dressings, flavoring
Soybean 466 °F (241 °C) Cooking, salad dressings, vegetable oil, margarine, shortening
Sunflower (Linoleic) 475 °F (246 °C) Cooking, salad dressings, margarine, shortening
Tea Seed 486 °F (252 °C) Cooking, salad dressings, stir frying, frying, margarine
Walnut 399 °F (204 °C) Salad dressings, frying

Source: Wikipedia – Cooking Oils

 

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