Every new year people look for ways they can start living a healthy lifestyle, and lucky for them they can join in veganuary.
Veganuary is a lifestyle trend that involves eating more plant-based products and cutting out animal products from your diet for the first month of the year.
Last week, I spoke to a vegan chef, Nicola Kagora, who is also known as Chef Cola about veganuary.
Kagora said going vegan for a month can change your life and the environment around it drastically.
“For example water reduction globally, and environmental uplifts. You start to see physical benefits to your body, health conditions such as weight are better controlled through the vegan diet, and chronic diseases are better improved via plant-based diets,” she said.
Another vegan chef, Lianne Holt said in the last ten years they have seen a steady increase in the number of people choosing a vegan lifestyle.
“The motivation for this stems from animal welfare, environmental concerns, religious reasons, and a healthier lifestyle. The choice to be vegan can be defined by each individual; personal intentions,” said Holt.
If you are doing veganuary, here is a recipe that you can try.
Rice Paper Sushi Rolls with Peanut Dipping Sauce
10 rice paper wrappers
1 large carrot, peeled and julienned
1 large cucumber, julienned
½ large red pepper, julienned
⅓ cup chopped purple cabbage
30g cooked rice noodles or rice vermicelli (optional)
1 avocado, sliced
A handful fresh mint
Sesame seeds (optional for garnish)
Easy peanut dipping sauce
¼ cup vegan peanut butter
1 tbsp hoisin sauce
2 tsp soy sauce
1 clove garlic, mashed
1 tsp Sriracha sauce or a chili garlic sauce, optional for spice
1–2 tbsp warm water, or more as needed
Crushed peanuts (optional garnish)
Ensure every single ingredient in the summer rolls is prepared/chopped/cooked before assembling.
Prepare the dipping sauce by whisking everything together in a bowl or use a food processor. Add everything to a medium bowl (except water and optional garnish) and whisk until smooth. Add 1-2 tablespoons of warm water or until you reach desired thinness. Pour into a serving bowl and top with garnish. Set aside.
Prepare the rice paper wrappers: Pour warm water into a large bowl. Working with one at a time, dip the rice paper wrapper into the warm water for 15-20 seconds (so it is soft but still slightly firm and pliable). Immediately remove from the water and place flat onto a work surface such as a large plastic cutting board. Pat the wrapper slightly dry.
Place a few sticks of carrot, cucumber, red pepper, and a sprinkle of cabbage on top of the bottom ⅓ of the rice paper. Then, a small amount of noodles (if using), a slice or two of avocado and a shredded mint leaf. NB: do not overstuff the roll.
Roll up tightly by gently pulling up the bottom of the roll and roll over the filling. Then, roll and use your hands to tuck the filling in as you go. Remember, you want a very tight roll.
After rolling each, place on a serving plate. Cut in half, sprinkle with sesame seeds, and serve with peanut sauce.