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Omnivores, what are your favorite vegan dishes?

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My favorite vegan dish is the very substantial Indonesian  Gado Gado with peanut sauce.  

There are numerous variations - It contains both raw and cooked vegetables and a peanut sauce that can vary from very mild to very spicy, depending on how you like it.  I like not too spicy. 

I used to go to an Indonesian restaurant with friends who were vegan and this was always their basic dish with a few other side dishes.

The restaurant had some additions, fried tofu or tempeh, some "rice sticks" that were like croutons. 

The nice thing about this, when cooking for guests, is that just about everything can be prepped a day ahead so all you have to do is either steam or stir-fry the things that need cooking, toss with the raw stuff and serve the peanut sauce, which you have made a day or so before, on the side.


It is almost a meal in itself and indeed I have often had it alone, as a meal.

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52 minutes ago, andiesenji said:

My favorite vegan dish is the very substantial Indonesian  Gado Gado with peanut sauce.  


You have posted a dish which features an almond sauce and yet you make it with a peanut sauce.  I've never actually made a peanut sauce.  Would you please post your favorite?  Thanks, andiesenji.

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1 hour ago, Darienne said:

You have posted a dish which features an almond sauce and yet you make it with a peanut sauce.  I've never actually made a peanut sauce.  Would you please post your favorite?  Thanks, andiesenji.

Sorry.  I have been using the Moosewood peanut sauce for decades it is a bit more complicated than some. I omit the tamarind and I use very little brown sugar I add it to taste after the rest is cooked.   And I use Mae Ploy sweet chile sauce instead of the peppers, which is also sweet so there is less need for the brown sugar. 

For vegans, the Mae Ploy sauce is a wonderful addition to many foods.  My vegan friends fry or barbecue extra firm tofu and use the Mae Ploy as a dipping sauce. They dress bean and rice dishes with it.  Like me, they buy it from Asian grocers in the large "industrial" size.

I highly recommend it.  I even have one friend who puts it on ice cream, which sounds weird but I have tried it and it's not bad at all.


You might want to Google Gado Gado Peanut sauce before you decide on a particular recipe.




I meant this as more of a suggestion of where to start.  There are numerous Gado Gado recipes and various peanut sauces for it on the 'net.

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Here's one standby:




Insalata cruda e cotta ("salad of raw and cooked vegetables")


This one has raw Little Gem lettuce, raw diced tomatoes, diced boiled new potatoes, roasted onion, steamed green beans; capers; pickled cherry peppers; marinated artichoke hearts; and olives. Dressing consists of a 1:3 ratio of vinegar to oil, seasoned with salt, and black pepper.


B and I usually have this once every couple of weeks, typically during the summer months. The vegetables will vary depending on what looks good at the market.

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While many have suggested Indian foods, which can be vegan, my favorite, and many of your guests won't  recognize it as vegan, is butternut squash, acorn squash, and sweet potatoes -  chopped into 3/4 inch cubes, tossed with salt, pepper, and rosemary, balsamic vinegar, olive oil  then roasted.  I  sometimes give the squashes a head start, because the sweet potatoes cook a little quicker. 

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Another standby is














green beans braised in tomato sauce. This version has onion and yellow bell pepper in the mix and is from one of Marcella Hazan's cookbooks. My version usually has green beans, garlic, tomatoes, olive oil, salt and pepper. Same difference - the idea is to prepare the tomato sauce first, then add the green beans. Braise the beans in the tomatoes for about an hour, after which it's done.


We also tend to have this in the summer when both green beans and tomatoes are abundant in Bay Area farmers' markets.

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