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Vegan for the Holidays

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Vegetarians in Paradise
Ask Aunt Nettie

We're delighted to share our Aunt Nettie with you. She's agreed to answer any questions you might ask about food, its preparation, and even clean-up tips. But we have to prepare you. She just might want to come right over to your house and help you fix dinner.

To send any questions to Ask Aunt Nettie, .

Vicki asked Aunt Nettie for some hearty lunch suggestions that would carry her through the day. Here are some of Aunt Nettie's favorite lunch ideas.

Well, howdy there, Vicki,

Lunch is right there in the middle o' the day when yer body is jes itchin' fer a pick-me-up. Now dependin' on yer activity 'er yer metabolism, you'll be the best judge o' quantity. Here's some o' what I like ta fix:

  1. Slice up some extra firm tofu and marinate the slices in a tamari and lemon juice marinade fer anywhere between an hour 'er overnight. Then fix yerself a sandwich with as many slices of the marinated tofu as you want, and add tomatoes, lettuce, sprouts, sliced cucumbers, whole basil leaves, 'er mint leaves. A little Dijon mustard or veggie mayo on yer whole grain bread adds a bit o' punch too. Now, that's a tasty sandwich.

    Tomato Half

  2. Fix yerself a salad at night fer lunch next day. Start with some extra firm tofu, 'bout a pound, and cut it up inta little chunks. Toss the chunks inta the big fryin' pan, a 12-incher, along with a couple tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, a tablespoon tamari, and a couple tablespoons lemon juice 'er apple cider vinegar. Turn the heat up high, an' stir them tofu chunks with a wooden spoon til they're nice 'n golden. This takes 'bout 5 ta 7 minutes. Use some o' the tofu chunks fer yer salad that ya mix up with chopped veggies and dress it up with a little olive oil, lemon juice, 'n minced garlic. Add a touch o' salt 'n pepper an' yer all set up fer yer next day's lunch fixin's. Set the rest of' the tofu chunks in the fridge fer a different salad a day 'er two down the line.

  3. A nice salad startin' with a can o' cooked beans is a real easy fix fer lunch. Jes add some chopped veggies, throw in some chopped nuts, sunflower seeds, 'er pumpkin seeds (make sure they're raw), an' dress it up with yer favorite dressin'. Pack some nice whole-grain crackers er bread an' yer all set.

  4. Pack some veggies fer crunchin' like carrots (that's everbody's favorite) an' celery (that's some folks' favorite.) Then try some o' the stuff most folks never pay attention to like turnips, kohlrabi, an' fennel bulb. They're great crunchies with plenty o' vitamins 'n minerals ta give ya energy.

  5. Don't ferget some fruit fer yer lunchsack. This season, ya kin hardly beat a nice, crunchy apple er one o' them bosc er anjou pears. A juicy navel orange is mighty good, too. Now the fruit's where ya pick up plenty o' energy an' that important new-fangled word "phytochemicals." It jes means stuff ya can't see but it's in there ta keep ya healthy.

If You Haven't Met Aunt Nettie. . .

Our Aunt Nettie has a head like a hard disk. It's filled with megabytes of information about food and cooking. And she's just itchin' to share her learnin' with city folk who live in mortal fear of the stovetop.

Aunt Nettie grew up on the farm. She did not eat out of a can or reach into the freezer. There was no microwave to pop her food into. Everything she made was from scratch. All the food she ate was natural, without pesticides. It was grown right there on the family farm, and she had to cook to survive. At eighty-three years young she still leaps and bounds around the kitchen and can shake, rattle, and roll those pots and pans with the best of them.

Nowadays, Aunt Nettie just shakes her head and complains, "Nobody cooks anymore. They have no idea about puttin' a meal together." She's on a mission. She wants to help those younguns eat better so they can grow up healthy like her own eight kids.

Click here for past Ask Aunt Nettie Columns

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