Thursday, October 15, 2009

How does eating meat affect climate change ?

Blog Action Day '09 - Climate Change 
Blog Action Day is an annual event that unites the world's bloggers in posting about the same issue on the same day on their own blogs with the aim of sparking discussion around an issue of global importance. Blog Action Day 2009 will be the largest-ever social change event on the web. One day. One issue. Thousands of voices.

How does eating meat affect climate change ?

Greenhouse Gases
According to the United Nations raising animals for food generates more greenhouse gases than all the cars and trucks in the world combined

Raising animals for food requires almost one-third of all fossil fuels used in South Africa. Producing a single hamburger uses enough fossil fuel to drive a small car 32 kilometres and enough water for 17 showers.

In addition to the pollution generated by fossil fuel consumption, animals raised for food produce 80 million tonnes of excrement each year. This excrement, swimming with parasites, antibiotics and pesticides, befouls our air, pollutes our water and destroys our topsoil.

Twenty times more land is required to feed a meat-eater than to
feed a vegan (pure vegetarian).

Raising animals for food consumes more than half of all the water used in the world. It takes 11,365 litres of water to produce half a kilogram of meat but only 272 litres to produce a pound of wheat.

Rain forests are being destroyed at a rate of 323,748 square
kilometres per year to create space to raise animals for food. For every fast-food burger, 5 square metres of rain forest land must be razed.

You can’t be concerned about the environment without caring
and blood, have complex social and psychological lives and feel
pain, just as we do. More than 55 billion land-based animals are killed each year globally by the meat industry, and they’re raised and killed in ways that would horrify any compassionate person.
This figure does not include the billions of animals torn from the sea.

You Can Help Stop Global Warming! Go Vegan!

The most powerful step that we can take as individuals
to avert global warming is to stop eating meat, eggs, and
dairy products.

Download the pamphlet : "Think you can be a meat eating environmentalist" 

Peta "Meat's Not Green" Campaign

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Tomato and Green Bean Curry

This is one of my favourite curries and it's my own original recipe that I've worked on over the years. It's not difficult to make and requires some preparation time. The roast potatoes may sound evil and a little over the top but try them this way - it's really worth it. 

Ingredients :

800 grams green beans (tips removed and sliced down the middle lengthways and then chopped in half)
6 medium potatoes
6 large tomatoes skins removed and diced (*)
2 tablespoons freshly ground ginger
As much fresh green or red chillies you want (The hotter the better - but if you don't have fresh chillies - dried red chillies will do)
2 teaspoons of black mustard seeds
2 teaspoons of cumins seeds
1 teaspoon of tumeric
2 teaspoons of curry powder (or more if you like)
2 teaspoons of chilli powder
If you have coriander powder and garam masala that would be good about 1 teaspoon of each. 
Fresh lemon juice and paprika for the potatoes.
A small handfull of fesh coriader leaves for garnish.
Vegetable oil for cooking

OK now for the potatoes ...
The super evil way is to peel and cut in quarters, steam until soft and  then roast in oven on a medium-to-high heat until crispy. 5 minutes before the potatoes are done remove from the oven pour fresh lemon juice and paprika over them. 

Use a wok or a deep skillet dish that have lids so they can be covered.
Turn the plate onto medium heat and heat up enough oil  (maybe 2 or 3 Tablespoons)
When the oil is nice and hot add the seeds (cumin and mustard)
When the seeds start popping put in the other spices including the ginger and chillies.
Stir quickly for about 30 seconds and then add in the green beans and stir them around so they're well coated.
Do that for about 2 minutes and then add the tomatoes.
You can raise the heat until the tomatoes are cooking nicely and starting to break up then add enough water to cover everything without making everything float.
Then cover and simmer like that for 20 minutes or so until the green beans are nice and soft and the tomatoes have turned into a nice sauce or gravy.
Cover your wok if you can.
The when the beans are soft and there's a nice sauce add the potatoes and leave for 5 or 10 minutes !!

Serve on a bed of steamed basamati rice.

(*) Do you know how to peel tomatoes the easy way ? 
OK it's really easy. Make crosses over the top and botton just slicing the skin slightly.
Then soak in boiling water for 10 minutes or so then add to cold water and the skins starting peeling off by themselves.Peel off the skins remove hard bit at the top and dice the tomatoes into 
small pieces. 

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Veganlicious Hot Chocolate of Doom!

This is a recipe that I found on this blog : Vegan Chicks Rock.

Although it's from another blog - you have to try this !!

1 Cup soy milk, rice milk, almond milk, etc.
1 Tablespoon cocoa powder
1 teaspoon sugar or agave nectar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

In a small pot add the soy milk and turn the heat to medium. Add the cocoa powder, sugar and vanilla. Whisk everything together until the cocoa has completely dissolved. This might take a minute or two. You shouldn't have any little pieces of cocoa floating around in your soy milk anymore. Keep whisking every minute or so for about 10, or until everything is almost boiling. If your hot chocolate starts to boil, turn the heat down, that's too hot!

Pour into your favorite mug and add soy cream or sugar if you want. I usually add soy cream to mine to make it a bit creamier. I don't like things that are to sweet, so I don't add any more sugar but you may want to.

See how easy it is to make your own hot chocolate? And it tastes even better than any mix you could buy as well.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Butter bean burgers

This recipe has been taken from the Animal Rights Africa Newsletter which can be found HERE

1 onion, chopped finely
1 red or green pepper, chopped finely
1 carrot, grated
4 oz. (100g) breadcrumbs
1 tin butter beans
Ground cumin
Ground coriander
Chilli powder
Soya flour

Fry onion, carrot and pepper for 5 minutes. Place them in a bowl and add the breadcrumbs, one teaspoon each of cumin, coriander and chilli. Add a little salt and pepper and one tablespoon soya flour. Mash the butter beans and add them. Mix well. Form the mixture into four thick burgers and coat them with flour. Fry the burgers for 20 minutes and serve with vegetables.

Serves 2-4

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Tofu "Paneer" Korma

The biggest challenge for some vegetarians to take the final step towards veganism is the addiction to cheese and for those that love indian food the thought of giving up paneer is terrifying.

I thought that I'd veganize this popular indian dish and see if it could convince some of the die-hard paneer junkies.

This was my first attempt and I think this may turn out to be a favourite for of you out there.

- 400g Block of firm tofu (grilled until slightly browned and cubed)
- 1 medium Onion (finely diced) 
- 1/2 stick Cinnamon 
- 1/2 cup of raw Cashews
- 3 Cloves 
- 6 Green Cardamoms 
- 1 Bay Leaf 
- 1 tspn Black Cumin Seeds (may subsitute with normal cumin )
- 2 tspn Ginger Paste 
- 1 tspn Garlic Paste 
- 1 tspn Chilli Powder 
- 1 tspn Coriander Powder 
- 2 tspn Cumin Powder 
- 1/4 tbsp Turmeric Powder 
- 400 g tin of cocounut milk
- 2 Green Chillies Sliced
- Fresh coriander (Cilantro) Chopped - for garnish
- Vegetable Oil 
- Salt to Taste

(Sorry for my poor photographic skills)


1. Brown the cashews lightly in a dry frying pan, then chop coarsely and then set aside.
2. Sautee onions in oil, add cinnamon, cardamom, bay leaf and the black cumin seeds and fry till fragrant.
3. Add the ginger and garlic pastes and stir fry. Then add the cubed tofu
4. Sprinkle in the chilli, coariander, cumin and turmeric powders and mix well.
5. Add the cashews.
6. Add coconut milk and cook over low heat.
7. Once the gravy has thickened considerably, add the salt and remove from heat.
8. Garnish with sliced green chilies and cilantro. You may throw in some slivered almonds for added effect.

PS: Add the salt last as the yogurt tends to curdle into lumps when salt is added while cooking. 

If you like a little more "heat" then add some ground fresh green chillies shortly after adding the coconut milk. I added 5 or 6 and it added the extra bite to the dish.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Chocolate Chocolate Chip Muffins

Not everybody has the time or confidence to bake from scratch. Personally I prefer to prepare everything from scrath rather than buying ready made products. 

Orgran is brand of vegan products from Australia that are widely available in South Africa. I always see them in the health food stores and have been curious to find out if they were any good or not.

I bought a pack of Orgran Chocolate Muffin mix and wanted to see how ready-made muffins compared to the those made from scratch.

The only other ingredients that you need are water and some vegetable oil. I wanted a bit of extra decadence so I decided to add in some chocolate chips.

5 - 10 minutes to prepare and 25 minutes of baking and I had a batch of a dozen vegan chocolate chocolate chip muffins.

 The conclusion : Very good as far as out-of-the-box baking goes and well worth it for those that don't have the time or confidence to try making their own muffins from scratch. 

Friday, October 2, 2009

Falafel in Pita

I had a falafel in pita for our traditional Friday take-away lunch at work and I was very disappointed with the hard, dry and tasteless falafel balls. So for everyone that has never made falafel balls from scratch here’s a recipe that I’ve been using for years and it’s far nicer than any ready-made or instant variety that I’ve ever tried. 

Falafel Sandwich - this is a sandwich version of the popular Middle Eastern dish. Vary the proportion of the ingredients to suit your taste. 

4 pita breads 
1 cup hummus
1 cup tahina sauce (NB : Tahina sauce not Tahini - otherwise extra hummus will do)
16 falafels
1/2 cup chopped onions (red onions add the best flavour)
1/2 cup chopped cucumber
1/2 cup chopped cabbage
1/2 cup chopped tomatoes
Chili sauce, to taste

Falafel balls :
2 cups (440g) dried chickpeas
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
4 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 tablespoons chooped fresh coriander leaves
2 teaspoons ground cumin
½ teaspoon baking powder
Your favourite kind of vegetable oil for deep frying (canola or sunflower would suffice)

Soak the chickpeas in 1 litre of water for 5 or 6 hours or overnight. Drain and then place in a food processor and blend for 30 seconds, or until finely ground.
Add the onion, garlic, parsley, coriander, cumin, baking powder and 1 tablespoon of water, then process for10 seconds, or until a rough paste has been formed.
Leave covered for 30 seconds.
Using your hands, shape heaped tablespoons of the falafel mixture into even shaped balls. If there is any excess liquid, squeeze it out.
Fill a large heavy-based saucepan one third full of oil and heat until a cube of bread dropped into the oil browns in 15 seconds. 
Lower falafel balls into the oil and cook in batches of five for 3-4 minutes, or until well browned all over.
Remove the falafel with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.

 Warm up the pita breads. Cut off the top inch of each pita bread. 
 Spread about 2 tablespoons of the hummus inside each pita bread and put 1/4 portions of all the ingredients inside each. 
• Top with about 2 tablespoons of tahina. 
Serve immediately. 

If you like your food with a bit of an extra kick try adding some dried chilli flakes or dried ground chilli into the falafel mixture before blending.

You can also add some freshly chopped chillies in with the other chopped vegetables.

The quantities you add will depend on how how you like it. 

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Banana Muffins

I decided to start this blog with something that everyone loves. They're moist and delicious and everyone will love them !!

3 ripe bananas
1/4 cup oil or melted margarine
1 cup sugar
2 cups flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional—see other options listed below) 

• Mash bananas (overripe ones make the best bread). Add oil/margarine and sugar. Mix well.
• Sift the flour, salt, and baking soda together and add to the banana mixture. Mix until the flour is blended (do not beat).
Pour into muffin pans or a bread pan and bake at 360°F (175 C) until a toothpick comes out clean. [Approx 15 minutes]

Optional: Add a handful of walnuts, oatmeal, raisins, chocolate chips, currants, coconut, or all of the above! 

Makes 1 Dozen Muffins 

(I've had this  recipe for a while and apologize for not remembering the source)

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Welcome to Vegan Animal a vegan resource guide for South Africans and anywhere else in the world.

Our site will go live on the 1st of October 2009 to celebrate Vegan MOFO (Month of Food) III.

For more info see :

It’s VeganMofo, The Vegan Month Of Food!

Vegan MOFO Directory