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Becoming Vegan

EIGHT years ago when I decided to become vegan, I was the only vegan I knew.

In fact I hadn’t even met a vegan! My aunty was vegetarian for six years, but that was back in her ‘uni days’ and so it was described as some sort of hippy phase.

I remember making the decision and friends actually betting on when I would crack! (My friend Rachel bet me twenty quid I would break by a week – a lot to a 17 year old!)

Well here I am, unbroken, unwavering, and gladly friends with a more vegans than ever before.

It got me thinking though, when I first began there was no ‘Fry’s Chicken Nuggets’ available at my local Tesco’s – you had to make do, find your own recipes and pray to god you could make Tofu taste like anything other than just tofu!

A lot of discussions on WordPress, Tumblr, Facebook and everywhere else about vegans – seems to be talking to VEGANS. Preaching to the converted if you wish.

So I thought for anyone you know out there who is thinking about being vegan, or anyone who wants to become one, here are some handy links.

After all, this is what we’re all here to do right?

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Vegan Friendly Finds – Holidays!

The other day I was talking to my South African housemates and they were urging me to go on Safari in the country.

“You’d love it” they said, “The animals are so close, and they live in the wild.”

I have to admit I was intrigued, however after a quick bit of research (including a great Louis Theroux Documentary – here) I found that most of these ‘wild life parks’ or ‘game reserves’ actually made their money from hunting.

Of course there are a few exceptions to this rule, but I found communication slow and even the ‘eco-friendly’ websites didn’t have sufficient information on the animal welfare and upkeep of the ‘sanctuary’.

On my travels I did however find a few websites that can help fellow vegans looking for a guilt-free escape and so I thought I’d share them – I haven’t been on any of these holidays (yet!) but if like me you are just looking for some inspiration and somewhere to add to your wanderlust list, check these pages out.

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Check out my new Facebook page!

This year I’ve committed to go big or go home with my blog, so I’ve launched a FB site to help me align it all.

I’ll be doing giveaways, reviews and more in 2016 so please pop over and give me a like.

http://www.facebook.com/veganfriendlyfinds

Plus I promise more #VFF blog posts on a regular basis. 🙂

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Vegan Friendly Finds – Vegan Christmas Treats

If this is your first xmas as a vegan, don’t panic! You can have an amazing and super filling time and feel good about yourself.

Vegans aren’t always Gwyneth Paltrow thin and thanks to the growing number of #accidentlyvegan things, sweet treats and Christmas goodies are now more accessible than ever before.

He’s a quick list of the junk food things you can stock-up on before Christmas crazy shopping fever hits, so when baby its cold outside, you can stay in and get fat watching black and white movies 🙂

  • Diet Coke
  • Dr Pepper
  • Corona Beer
  • Co-op Prosecco (labelled Vegan)
  • M&S white/ red wine (labelled vegan)
  • Mr Kipling apple and blackberry pies
  • Tesco value apple crumble (88p!)
  • Skittles
  • Ooredoo’s
  • Golden Ooredoo’s
  • Hobnobs/ dark choc chip Hobnobs
  • Lotus spread – crunchy is best
  • Betty Crocker Choc Fudge Spread (AMAZING on cakes, toast, anything!)
  • Fry’s chicken strips
  • Bisto gravy
  • Cashew nuts
  • Mrs Crimbles Dutch Apple Cake
  • Choices Vegan Fudge
  • Co-op Jelly
  • Jammie Dodgers
  • Alpro custard
  • Nakd salted caramel bites
  • Nature Valley Bars – Maple Syrup

And soooooooooo much more. This is just a tiny view into the sugar filled world available to you!

Don’t forget you can also bake your way to satisfaction – good baking vegan blog here: http://www.veganricha.com/category/dessert

If I’ve missed anything that needs to be on this list out – let me know ❤

 

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Vegan Friendly Finds – Kosebasi Restaurant

Last week, whilst wondering around the new Gulf Mall in Qatar, I spotted a stylish looking restaurant on the corner.

Imagine Paul mixed with PF Chang’s meets the Middle East.

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I took a look at the menu and although at first the Turkish food seemed heavily to rely on meat I had an amazing meal and found a few great gems for you guys to try out at your local restaurants or make at home!

OBVIOUSLY I ate hummus. A lot of it.

But I also discovered :

Söğürme – Grilled eggplant, tomato and chilli green pepper mixed and roasted on the oven.

Fattuş Salata Fattush Salad – With Lettuce, tomatoes, green olive slices and parsley served with black olive paste dressing – TO DIE FOR.

Kısır Bulghur salad – with parsley, onion, mint and spices.

And a lot of other delicious things I’ve never tried before (one was this crazy white bean salad in a tomato sauce I can’t find the name of)

For my die hard vegans out there obviously the menu still has things like – Çiğ Köfte – Raw ground meat, pounded with onion and pepper; served with lettuce cups – on it (at least they’re eating lettuce hey?!) but I found it a great place to go with some omni friends and know my meal is vegan friendly.

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Unfortunately branches only seem to be out this way at the moment – but who knows, they might expand across to the US, Europe and beyond soon.

http://www.kosebasi.com/subeler

Anyone in Qatar I thoroughly recommend it – although I didn’t fancy shopping anymore after stuffing myself silly!


			
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Vegan Friendly Finds – Fashion Brands

 

I just thought I’d pop this up here as I know lots of people struggle in finding vegan clothing.

I’m very much on the fence when it comes to fashion. I don’t wear leather, wool or anything that I know comes from or would harm an animal.

Equally I don’t shop solely in ethical vegan clothes shops – because they are usually CRAZY expensive.

Saying that I’m always looking for a good winter coat (even though I currently live in the desert – but I’m ginger so a green long winter coat is perfection for me) and I noticed a few of the shops in these links have things such as ‘vegan wool’ which I need to have in my life. SNNUUGGGLLLLYYY!

So yes. Obvs things like Linda McCartney make an appearance but also a few cool little American online places that have trendy shoes and bags I might just order. Then I can be a cool kid.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/fashion/shopping/best-vegan-fashion-brands-for-shoes-bags-and-accessories/

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Vegan Friendly Find – Johnny Rocket Streamliner Burger

FINALLY a burger from a burger chain that is actually vegan.

Ok here’s the details and below my thoughts:

Note – it’s sometimes called a ‘streamliner’ sometimes a ‘Boca burger’:

Boca JR

Veggie Burger (Soy Boca® Burger) ingredients:

Water, soy protein concentrate, wheat gluten, contains Less Than 2% of methylcellulose, salt, caramel colour, dried onions, yeast extract, sesame oil, hydrolysed wheat protein, natural and artificial flavour (non-meat), Disodium Guanylate, Disodium Inosinate. Allergens: Wheat, Soy, Sesame (note sesame is considered a major allergen only in Canada)

Also note:

Johnny Rockets currently uses soybean oil for its fried foods.”

http://www.johnnyrockets.com/menu/ingredient-allergen-list.html

The verdict – the burger is pretty bland but has some serious home comfort skills going on. The bun is vegan and they don’t put Mayo on the burger – but I ask for it without mustard, as, well…. Mustard is gross.

I do have it with fried mushrooms and the manager tells me that every Johnny Rockets has a separate area for vegan and veggie food to be cooked.

BEST OF ALL – the sweet potatoes fries and APPLE PIE are vegan (if you have it without cream or ice cream) a burger and dessert! Heaven!

Although there’s none in the UK yet, I’m pretty sure with enough emails we can get one in London at the least!

Check the website for more details on branch locations.