Photos by Emily Caruso
One of my favorite regular features on Oh My Veggies is Make It Meatless. While I’ve never felt like I needed a vegetarian version of Salisbury steak or meatballs, it’s fun to come up with ways to make those recipes with vegetables, grains, beans or other proteins substituted for the meat. And for new vegetarians who struggle with missing their favorite foods, recreating meat-based recipes and making them meatless can make that transition so much easier.
Last week I shared a Rustic Polenta Casserole recipe from America’s Test Kitchen’s The Complete Vegetarian Cookbook; while the cookbook is full of recipes that are naturally meatless, there are also a lot of vegetarian makeovers for those of you who, like me, have a weakness for that kind of thing. What I love most about America’s Test Kitchen is the way they take the time to explain the how and why of every recipe—something that is especially helpful when it comes to meatless remakes. Shabu-shabu, bolognese, paella, albondigas and reubens are just a few of the recipes that get the “make it meatless” treatment in this cookbook.
Mee Goreng is an Indonesian noodle dish that’s traditionally made with meat and shrimp pan-fried in a sweet soy sauce. In this version, tofu replaces the meat; because Indonesian-style sweet soy sauce isn’t readily available in most supermarkets, America’s Test Kitchen uses a substitute made with molasses, brown sugar and regular soy sauce. Because the noodles are sweet, a squeeze of lime juice just before serving is essential in balancing the flavors of the dish.
If you can't find fresh Chinese noodles at your grocery store, substitute 12 ounces of dried spaghetti or linguine, cooked according to package instructions.
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