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Ever thought about giving up meat? Even for a month? If you're used to breakfasting on bacon butties – or your idea of a tasty treat is a pepperoni pizza – the prospect of giving it all up for a pile of greens probably won't seem that appetising.
But times have changed and gone are the days when it was all lettuce leaves and vegetable lasagne (why did restaurants ONLY ever offer vegetable lasagne?) There's never been a better time to be veggie so here are a few of our favourite recipes from the site to get you started.
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1. Preheat oven to 200°C.
2. Put onion, celery, mushrooms and risotto rice into a rectangular baking dish and add a handful of chopped parsley.
3. If using add the wine and porcini mushrooms.
4. Pour over the hot vegetable stock and season.
5. Stir to mix together and place in the oven.
6. Cook for 30 minutes or until all the liquid has been absorbed, giving a quick stir halfway at 15 minutes.
7. Once cooked stir in the Philadelphia and vegetarian Parmesan-style cheese, sprinkle some chopped parsley, and tuck in!
Tip: Leftovers can be rolled into balls, egged, floured and shallow fried to make arancini - Italian rice balls!
1. Soak the lentils in water overnight and then drain.
2. Make a tomato sauce by frying the onion with the garlic until soft in a drop of oil.
3. Add the tinned tomatoes, salt, pepper, oregano, lentils, tomato purée and stock cubes and mix well.
4. Bring to a slow simmer and cook for about half an hour - if the sauce becomes a bit dry, just add a drop of water.
5. In the meantime, wash and slice the courgettes (don't bother to peel), place in a colander, sprinkle with salt and leave for 10 minutes (to remove the bitterness) before rinsing.
6. Place the courgettes in a baking dish with the raw mushrooms.
7. Pour the sauce over the courgettes and mushrooms and mix together.
8. Top with a good layer of grated cheese and bake in a preheated oven at 180°C for about 45 minutes until the courgettes are cooked through.
Tip: This is great as a main meal for vegetarians, but non-veggies can enjoy it as a vegetable dish with meat. The ingredients are just a guide, as you can add extra mushrooms or other vegetables instead of the courgettes if you adjust the cooking time. More courgette recipes here.
1. Cook the pasta, then drain and rinse under cold water.
2. Add a little olive oil and lemon juice to the pasta and toss thoroughly.
3. Add salt and pepper and all the other ingredients. You can, of course, chop and change ingredients depending on preference.
"Thats my lunch sorted. Sounds absolutely yummy. Thanks for sharing." Queenie412
Like these? Get more dinner inspiration here...
1. Sauté the leeks in 2 tablespoons of olive oil until they soften in a large frying pan. In a large saucepan, wilt the spinach over a high heat, drain thoroughly in a colander and squeeze out the extra water.
2. Using a large bowl, mash together the feta with a fork, then add beaten eggs, milk, dill and nutmeg and season well with salt and pepper.
3. Fold the spinach, leeks, spring onions and pine nuts into the mixture.
4. Grease a 23cm/9" square baking dish and line with half of the pastry (lay pastry sheets down one at a time brushing each sheet wilth olive oil).
5. Spread the mixture evenly over the pastry base.
6. Lastly, cover the mixture with the remaining pastry sheets, brushing each one well with the olive oil. Ensure the last sheet is well covered.
7. Bake for 40-45 minutes, at 190°C/Gas mark 5 until the pie is golden and crisp.
8. When cool enough, cut into squares.
For the dumplings:
1. Heat the oil in a large pan. Add the chopped onion and garlic. Fry for 2-3 minutes.
2. Add the leeks and fry for a further 2 minutes. Add the lentils then add the stock, bay leaf and herbs.
3. Chop and add the celery, parsnips, sweet potato, carrots and mushrooms. Stir in the tomatoes, black eyed peas, Worcestershire sauce and seasoning. Top up with water as needed.
4. Simmer for 30 minutes as you prepare the dumplings.
5. Once the dumplings are added, simmer for a further 30 minutes.
Optional - handful of the following (or similar things):
1. Put the butter, sugar, syrup and honey in a large pan and melt over a low heat.
2. Grind the nuts and seeds in a blender or food processor, or chop them to the size you want.
3. When the butter mixture is melted, add all the other ingredients, stir vigorously and tip them all into a large swiss roll tin lined with baking parchment.
4. Bake for approximately 160°C/Gas mark 3 for 25 minutes.
5. Cut into squares while hot and leave in a tin to cool.
Tip: You can also add fruit. Chopped dried apricots or cranberries go particularly well.
1. Melt the butter, add the cocoa, almond essence and golden syrup into the saucepan and stir well.
2. Add the biscuit mixture and stir well.
3. Put into well greased 7" lined tin and pour in the melted chocolate on top.
4. Put in the fridge to set.
5. Mark into portions whilst setting.
"Very good and easy to make with grandchildren (without the brandy of course!)" LyndaW
We have done our best to provide recipes that suite the lacto-ovo vegetarian diet. If in doubt about any cheese look for the Vegetarian Society approved trademark on the package.