Last minute vegan guests
Don’t panic, here is a few advices on how to please your friend without to much stress and work.
A little reminder first, Vegans don’t eat animal products.It means no fish , meat ( yes even chicken ) , no eggs ( hidden in cakes or not), no dairy products ( milk/ butter/ cream / cheese etc..), include to this , fish stocks , meat stocks, gelatines ( made from bones..) some don’t want to eat honey neither.
So think vegetables, fruit, grains, pulse, nuts,seeds, beans, or even seaweed.
Review what you have plan for the other guest :
-you have prepared a few little bits for your guest to eat before the real dinner start.
A good alternative is to toast some fine slices of good bread and cover them with sautéed exotic mushrooms, garlic and fresh thyme or other herbs..
You can open this bruscetta type to other items, fridges are often stuffed with little treasures such as marinated sun dried tomatoes, or olives, or other antipasto. It is the right time to use those .
-You might have a few garnish such as potatoes, green vegetables, red cabbage stew to go with your turkey.
Keep a few bigger portions of those free from butter or cream. That will be the bulk of your vegan main course.
To give a little extra love to your vegan friend, simply select a good looking root vegetable , it could be a whole beetroot, or sweet potatoes, a butternut squash, or even a whole celeriac.Clean it, cut it in 2 , season and cook it whole in the oven at 180degres until you can go through with a knife without resistance. ( from 30 min for the butternut squash to 1,5 hours for the whole celeriac.)then cut it open at the last minute ,drizzle with salt and pepper or herbal oil and serve it on the side of the other garnish to your veggie lover.
-You have decided to include a selection of cheese in your new year menu.
You probably have thought about a green salad to serve with the cheese.Use it to create a wonderful vegan mix salad with diverse Xmas items from your pantry.
In this salad you can mix dried fruit ( dried figs, dried raisin, ) , roasted nuts such as walnut, cashews, hazelnuts ( roasting// torrefying, them will develop the taste and the crunch ). Fresh fruit are also welcome, ( pieces of apples, pears, Sharon fruit, grapes, fresh figs, ..) or pan fried root vegetables ( parsnip , turnip, carrots, squash, celeriac, potatoes, jerusalem artichokes.), or onions, garlic,
Give a little time for the dressing, it is what is going to make your salad a real special party treat.
Use if you have a good balsamic vinegar, choose your favourite oil , mix it with other oil such as walnut oil, hazelnut oil, or truffle oil even.
-The dessert is always a lot more challenging.
Not the most easy to improvise yourself vegan pastry chef , and a last minute cake will probably take you a lot of your precious time.
An easy alternative is to run buying a litre of vegan ice-cream, ( if such item is available near by ) or sorbet ( but check the ingredients … animal products can be found all over.)Then serve it with a selection of exotic fruit such as a carefully selected mango or litchi.
You can also poach a whole pear and serve it with a chocolate sauce ,some toasted slivered almond for a decadent poire belle Helene or even sauteed some apples and pears and flambeed it with Cognac or Grand Marnier with caster sugar and spices.
Marzipan is made from almonds and sugar, so it’s vegan , stuff an apple and bake it, what is more easy than that !!!
and remember chocolate is vegan as well, and vegans , like everybody , are quite found of chocolate.
( go for 70%dark chocolate , check the ingredients, pick up the one without dairy products.)
I hope it helps, please send feedback and comment ,
i wish you a wonderful end of the year.