Meatless Monday – Cinco de Mayo

Sunday was May 5th or Cinco de Mayo in Spanish. It has become a day to celebrate Mexican heritage and is the inspiration for this edition of Meatless Monday.

More info:

While not naturally vegetarian, Mexican food does offer some vegetarian-friendly dishes. Numerous restaurants, cookbooks and internet recipes abound that offer Mexican-style food.  With a few tweaks and a little imagination any dish can be turned into a meat-free meal.

Your tools:
chocolate, avocado, corn (organic and non-GMO), beans, chili peppers, vanilla, jicama

Your challenge:
Get inspired with the complexity and regional variations of Mexican cuisine to create your own vegetarian/vegan friendly dish.

Here’s my ‘dos centavos‘ worth:

  • Jicama fries with mole gravy. Mole is basically a savoury sauce made with chocolate, chiles and various spices. There are a number of regional versions of this. Just make your basic vegetarian/vegan gravy and grate in some bittersweet dark chocolate (at least 70% cacao content). Add some chiles if you like it spicy. (The smaller and seedier the spicier.) Cut Jicama into strips for some ‘fries’. Jicama is a root vegetable and often eaten raw. It can be compared in taste and texture to a non-sweet apple.
  • Guacamole salad. Make a vinaigrette with avocado oil, lemon juice, cumin and coriander. Pour it over and toss with chopped red and green bell peppers, carrots, more jicama, some organic non-GMO corn, chopped green onions and diced tomatoes.
  • Tortilla Lasagne. Use soft tortilla shells as the lasagne noodles. Layer with refried beans, some grated cheese (any tasty melty cheese will do whether vegan or vegetarian) and salsa. Bake in the oven until cheese has melted. No need to cook for a long time as the ingredients do not warrant this. Serve with a plain yoghurt cheese (plain vegetarian or vegan yoghurt with the ‘whey’ strained out tastes just like sour cream) and guacamole for dipping your forkfuls of food into.
  • The classic in cupcake form! A Mexican chocolate cake made with cinnamon and cayenne, topped with Mexican vanilla icing and sprinkled with cinnamon sugar. This is equally as good as a vegetarian or vegan concoction. (Personally I prefer a good quality vegan vanilla icing.)

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