Alan Roettinger used to think of vegans as "a bit extreme, unreasonable, perhaps even irrational," he wrote in a recent post. Now, however, the celebrity chef and food author is a believer. And the proof is in the vegan pudding, as well as in other recipes in his new book: "Extraordinary Vegan" (click for additional details).
What convinced him to make the shift from meat to meat-free? His cholesterol level soared so high that his doctor wanted to prescribe medication, reported the Huffington Post. So Alan made a deal: He would surrender his sirloin for soy and go completely vegan.
It's been five years since that plant-based pledge, and Alan has no regrets. His cholesterol is at a healthy level, as is his weight. And he also feels better mentally. More than that, as evident from the tasty recipes in his cookbook, Alan feels that he savors food even more
"When I went vegan, I realized all the variety of flavor, all the depth of flavor comes from plants. Meat and dairy dulls your palate. Now my palate is cleaner. I appreciate more," he said.
And consumers will appreciate the fact that Alan's vegan recipes can save them money.
"It doesn't have to be haute cuisine," he says, "it's about quality, about making the stuff you can afford taste excellent."
Try a sample below, reprinted from the book "Extraordinary Vegan:"
Shaved Brussels Sprout Slaw
- 4 cups Brussels sprouts
- 1/4 head red cabbage, cored and very thinly sliced
- 1 large carrot, finely shredded
- 6 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1/4 cup flax oil
- 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
- 2 tablespoons raw cashew butter or almond butter
- 2 tablespoons white miso
- 1 tablespoon reduced-sodium tamari
- 4 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
- 2 teaspoons sriracha sauce
- 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
Peel off any wilted or discolored leaves from the Brussels sprouts. Beginning with the top, slice the Brussels sprouts as thinly as possible (a mandoline made quick, easy work of this), discarding the stem end.
Put the Brussels sprouts in a large bowl. Add the red cabbage and carrot and fluff with your fingers until the vegetables are thoroughly mixed.
In a small bowl, mix the lime juice, flax oil, vinegar, cashew butter, miso, tamari, garlic, sriracha, and ginger in a small bowl and whisk until smooth and well combined. Pour over the vegetables and toss well.
Serve at once.
Makes 4 servings.