Organic Spa Blog

How to Be Vegan

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Image courtesy of Erika Thorpe

If you are a vegan wanna-be, a vegan dabbler, a VB6, or someone who wants to go, excuse the expression, “whole hog,” this little handbook is jam-packed with everything you need to know to get started and continue down the vegan path.

In How to Be Vegan (Artisan), author Elizabeth Castoria, former editorial director of VegNews, demystifies what it means to put veganism into practice, and offers up tips on just about every aspect: how to stock your pantry, how you will need to supplement your diet, where to find the best vegan airport food, top vegan dining spots around the U.S., how to play nice when carnivores ask annoying questions, and even a few insights into lifelong vegan Joaquin Phoenix’s commitment to living cruelty-free.

She talks about what to wear (modal! tencel! linen! cotton! hemp!), where to shop and what to put in your hair that is cruelty-free. In Top Ethnic Grocery Finds, Castoria shows us interesting ethnic twists on vegan cuisine, with Chinese wonton wrappers for dumplings and Middle Eastern za’atar and baba ghanoush.

You won’t want to miss The Recipes chapter, where she serves up her take on vegan classics like the Black Bean Burger, Tofu Scramble and, one of our favorites, Garden Wraps with Hummus, below. Yum!

Garden Wraps With Hummus

Serves 4

1 cup hummus
¼ cup minced red onion
¼ cup sliced, pitted Kalamata olives
¼ cup chopped reconstituted or oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley or basil
4 large (8- to 10-inch) flour tortillas or lavash flatbread
2 cups shredded romaine lettuce
1 large carrot, grated
2 ripe tomatoes, thinly sliced
1 English cucumber, peeled and cut into ¼-inch strips
1 ripe Hass avocado, peeled, pitted, and sliced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Hot sauce (optional)

1. In a bowl, combine the hummus, onion, olives, sun-dried tomatoes, and parsley, stirring to mix well. Set aside.

2. To assemble the wraps, divide the hummus mixture among the tortillas and spread evenly across the surface.

3. Spread the lettuce and carrot over the hummus, then arrange a few slices of tomato, cucumber, and avocado across the bottom half of each tortilla. Season to taste with salt, pepper, and hot sauce.

4. Roll up the wraps tightly, then slice in half diagonally. Serve immediately.

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