Thursday, January 22, 2009
Time was when kitchens were so traditional that women -- who always did the cooking-- rarely ventured to make anything that was not something their moms and grandmoms had made for decades.
Time was when people found foods they were not used to impossible to even contemplate, and therefore eat.
Time was when it was not at all easy to find and shop for ingredients exotic to the region one lived in, restricting even the most innovative cook.
Thank goodness we don't live in those times.
Today, our kitchens -- no matter where we live -- are infused with global flavors. Most of us have access to and can eat, cook, and rave about food from every corner of the world: Italian, Chinese, Japanese, Indian, Thai, Ethiopian, Moroccan, Greek, Lebanese, French, Mexican...there really is no stopping.
So why am I writing this? A few weeks back, the prolific Madhuram suggested that I host a vegan pizza or pasta event. I loved the idea, but I thought, why not run further with it? Why stop at Italian? Why not start a series that celebrates, one at a time, food from every corner of the world? Vegan, of course.
So here's the plan: every month, I'll feature a country or a region (feel free to make any suggestions) as part of this series which I will call It's a Vegan World. And each one of you amazing bloggers and non-blogger cooks is invited to participate with your recipes.
To make the kick-off a little easier on both you and me, I decided to go with one of the most popular cuisines of all: Italian. Who among us doesn't love Italian food, and there's so much to love: pastas, pizzas, risottos, fragrant herbs, delicious sauces, luscious desserts...pure joy, all of it.
Italian food we eat here in the United States often has globs of butter and cheese in it, but I'm hoping that when you're required to cook vegan, you'll come up with healthier alternatives. A win-win all around :).
You can cook anything: entree, appetizer, side-dish, dessert, a snack: your imagination's the only limit. It doesn't have to be a traditional recipe, but it should fit into the parameters of what is generally accepted as Italian food. Don't send me, say, semiya upma made with spaghetti.
Here are the guidelines:
The deadline for It's a Vegan World: Italian is Feb. 28, 2009.
These foods are no-nos in vegan cooking, so please leave them out: honey, butter, eggs, cheese, ghee, milk, yogurt (basically no milk-based products), gelatin, and, of course, no meats or fish. Vegan meat substitutes are fine.
The recipe should be cooked for this event, so please do not recycle old posts.
Link back to this announcement, and feel free to use the logo below.
Send me an email with your post to myveganworld[at]gmail.com. Include these details:
I'll get the photograph from your post
That's it. I know this is a bit of a challenge, but I also know that most of you out there are up for it. So put on your aprons and get thinking: I can't wait to see what you come up with!