MEAT-FREE: WORTH IT OR NOT?
Consumers are increasingly questioning meat consumption and the impact of our diets on the animals, the environment, and our health. This can also be seen in the rising demand for meat substitutes. Plant-based burgers, sausages, and other meat alternatives are now available in all well-known supermarkets, made from legumes, vegetables, grains, and other components. When compared to meat, meat alternatives have a number of advantages. Vegan burgers, for example, are cholesterol-free and often have fewer calories and fat than comparable meat-based burgers.
If you're new to no-animal meats or packaged meat replacements, bear in mind that they all differ in terms of how closely they mimic meat in terms of flavours, textures, and, of course, looks. Just because a meat substitute is moulded into burgers, nuggets, or sausages to look like the meat items we know and love doesn't imply it has the same flavour profile as the real thing. Furthermore, not all meat replacements are inherently vegan; some may contain traces of eggs or other dairy, so if you are a staunch Vegan, you must read the nutrition labels carefully before you begin cooking.
Here are some delicious plant-based meats you can try:
Tofu is a traditional meat substitute that has long been one of Asia's most important sources of nourishment. It is particularly valued as a low-calorie protein source. Tofu is also adaptable since it readily absorbs the flavours of spices and marinades. Tofu is now available in a wide range of flavours, including fragrant, smoked types and marinated kinds flavoured with a variety of herbs and spices.
This fruit, like figs, is a near relative, but it has a consistency that is quite similar to shredded flesh. While the fruit can be purchased whole, it is far more convenient to purchase it canned or in refrigerated pouches. It mixes well with any ingredients or sauces you're cooking it with because of its delicate flavour. There are a plethora of innovative ways to liven up jackfruit, from pulled “pork” sandwiches to chilli to a hefty dish of nachos.
3. PEA PROTEIN
The humble pea is one among a number of plant-based protein sources that have recently made a name for themselves as meat substitutes. Currently available pea-based products are made from a combination of veggies, pea protein, and various seasonings. They are high in protein and iron while being low in fat and carbs. Although pea protein-based meat replacements are becoming more widely available, they are now only available in vegan-friendly stores.
Mushrooms, despite their lack of protein, are unquestionably a fantastic meat alternative. These little wonders, on the other hand, outperform meat in many ways: they're high in vitamins and minerals like selenium, zinc, and vitamins B1, B2, B5, B6, and B12. Furthermore, they are high in antioxidants and do not include fat or carbs. They are the only vegetable that naturally contains vitamin D as a result of their exposure to sunlight.
Beets are the candy of nature. They're sweet and delicious, and they're great in salads, but they also have another side. You probably don’t associate beets with meatiness, but tapping into their savory, earthy side can allow you to make some surprisingly meaty dishes. Roasting beets brings out their natural delicious flavours.
Cauliflower is a mild vegetable that is known for being able to subtly replace certain foods like potatoes, pizza dough, and even meat. Cauliflower can be the star of any dish when properly seasoned and cooked. They're the ideal low-carb meat substitute for everything from steaks to tacos.
Although these are just some of the plant-based meats that one can try, it might take a while for you to figure out which ones you like the most, in terms of texture, taste, and ease of cooking it as your favorite dish.