Buddha’s stir fry

Are you trying to go vegetarian? If so this might be a great dish for you. This would be a great Meatless Monday dish.

This stir fry has the Chinese wood ear mushrooms, shitake mushrooms, Chinese mushrooms, bean sprouts, tofu, ginger, snowpeas, and the like. You can have it with rice. This video is from The Art of Cooking on Youtube.

You can get the Wood Ear mushrooms and the Chinese mushrooms from your local Asian grocery store. They come in the dried form so you might have to soak these for a few hours before using.

You would have this dish with rice or noodles.

Tofu Burgers

I love vegetarian food and I enjoy eating tofu burgers. Pre Covid19 I went out for Tofu burgers a lot. But you can make your own at home.

A tofu burger has no meat in there so it is perfect for Meatless Monday

Image courtesy of Vegan Crunk

You do everything the same as a normal burger except you grill the tofu. You use extra firm tofu and you grill this. According to Threemanycooks, “Wrap tofu in paper toweling or a clean tea towel and place on a plate. Place a second plate on top and weight to drain additional liquid, about 10 minutes”

Instead of tomato sauce you can use sweet chilli sauce. I like the ones from the Asian grocery shops as they are authentic.

All the vegetables and the bun is the same as a normal one.

Kale and what to do with it

Kale is a dark-colored leafy green that has lots of iron in it. It has lots of fiber and antioxidants in there that can prevent various health problems such as diabetes, cancer, and the like. They are part of the broccoli family which means that they are easy to grow. They grow well in the colder months.

You can put kale in smoothies as it has been done before at Shape up.

They can be added to vegetable and lamb soups in winter.

You can eat them raw, steam them, cook them, or sautee them to make a side dish.

Kale chips

This is good as a pick me up snack at 3pm. You can bake the kale leaves in an oven at about 275F for about 15-30 mins to make chips. Before they go in there brush a bit of olive oil on top.

Pasta with kale

You can add kale to all sorts of pasta dishes. 

Pizza with kale

You can add kale to your pizza.

Kale salad

This is a great summer dish. You can add kale to any salad for that little bit of iron.

You can add kale to your breakfast eggs if you like. Simply scramble some eggs with kale in there. Or you can do avocado smash with kale


What else is happening in the plant based world

We talk about this issue as World Vegetarian day is on the 1st of October and now is a good time to consider going vegetarian.

agriculture cherry tomatoes cooking delicious
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Now that the meat industry is struggling, the plant based fake meat products have really picked up their sales. Food politics ahs reported an increase in some of their sales. They reported a huge increase in April in the US when the pandemic was at its highest there. Now that its Melbourne and the abbattoirs are now operating at 60-80% capacity would we see more plant based foods in the supermarket?

There has been some talk about going on a plant-based diet for a while. First of all, it was from the Truth about Weight Loss summit with Chef AJ last year, and then it was reinforced when I watched “Diet Fiction” which is on Amazon Prime (note new users will get 30 days free trial). Diet Fiction talks about being 90% whole food plant-based diet and 10% cheat foods. Too many Americans and Australians are eating too much meat and protein which is not good for you. Meat such as steak has a lot of saturated fat in there which is not good for the waistline and the kidneys

Freely says that about 375 million people worldwide have been vegetarian. But if we encourage more people to go vegetarian the number could be about double that in 2025.

Meat free Mondays has been going on for some time and its really popular. People post a lot of photos on Instagram and they get a lot of likes. Instagram is going crazy over Meat free Mondays. The hashtag #meatfreemondays has over 266K posts as people are more serious about being healthier.

We really should be trying to go for a wholefood diet that is full of vegetables and nuts and legumes. We should have a few Meat-free dishes during the week

Bean and brown rice salad

Now that its Spring time, having a salad at home is a good option for a light lunch. Note this post was written in the pre COVID times when I could get to the Queen Victoria Market. During COVID lockdown you can get all your market essentials delivered.

brown nut lot
Photo by Mike on Pexels.com

Brown rice is one of the wholegrains that you could have in a day and canned beans is another. You can cook brown rice either in the microwave or on the stove depending on the brown rice that you buy. Most of the packets of brown rice comes with instructions.

I bought those Organic beans from the market for $1.80. Here they do fill me up and I tried it with brown mushrooms and brown rice as well as chili olive oil.

Easy vegetarian bake

Now that meat is sort off the menu with the abattoirs all down, we figured that we’d do a vegetarian bake with eggs and whatever vegetables we have at home. Eating vegetables and lots of it is good for you and we should be having five serves of it a day. In this vegetarian bake you can use all sorts of vegetables.

Eating vegetables helps to increase fiber to help get rid of waste. It is a great idea for people to have a Meat Free Monday or another meat-free day during the week.

Recipe courtesy of CookingwithKarma

How to start being a vegetarian

Now that the meat supply is short due to the virus, it is a great time to think about going vegetarian.

Some benefits of going vegetarian are losing weight, being healthier and cleaner and saving the planet.

fruit salads in plate
Photo by Ella Olsson on Pexels.com

So what can vegetarians eat?

Going vegetarian is a plant-based diet. They can eat most foods except for fish, seafood, and meat. They can eat whey products and eggs. We can still eat tofu and dairy products such as milk. But if you want to go all vegan then you can’t have diary. Vegans normally get their calcium from nuts.

Some problems if you’re vegetarian

Lack of B12. This vitamin is found in meat. There is a supplement for that if you need it.

Lack of iron for runners which might mean anemia

But it can be substituted for iron tablets which may be recommended by your healthcare professional. Don’t take more than the recommended dose as you might have liver and kidney problems later.

How to start?

Start off by going slowly if you are a heavy meat eater. Do try a few meals each week that are vegetarian and build up from there. There is some great inspiration online and there are many vegetarian blogs. Just do a search online at bing.com

You may not like it at first but you’ll get used to it. Just give it time and commitment. Going vegetarian doesn’t mean that you miss all of your vitamins and minerals. If you plan it properly you can enjoy a vegetarian diet with all the benefits. You may need to see a nutritionist which can help you out with going on the diet.

Just becasuse its not meat doesn’t mean that its all good. You still have to drink water and try not to have too much of the processed stuff.

Some of the vegetarian stuff has quite a few calories.

Vegetarian burritos

The ones outside are always expensive and are full of a lot of sauces, rice and not much vegetables other than beans. But the ones you get at home are much better.

We used Simpson’s pantry wraps and Edgells beans. To make the guacamole we used avocado, lime juice and Tamar Valley yoghurt. You can add cucumber and tomato in there but we had none so we used carrots. We also had grated cheese in there. We used a bit of red onion to give it that kick.

Although ours does not have rice in it, you can add some if you need. Last night’s rice is ok.

After we put all the ingredients into the wrap it was time to fold it and then we put it through the sandwich press to make it warm.

Homemade hummus

fresh hummus and pita bread
Photo by Naim Benjelloun on Pexels.com

This is so easy to do using a Nutribullet and with canned chickpeas. We love Edgell’s chickpeas as they have no oil and no fuss. You can add yogurt to it if you like or you can leave it without. If we were to use yogurt it would be a low-fat Greek one. You only need a small clove of garlic that needs to be chopped up. Add some water and then blend away.

And there you have it.

This is so much better than the outside ones which are calorie laden and do not have a lot of flavour in them.

If you are losing weight I suggest for you to leave the yoghurt.

Easy vegetarian frittata

This Frittata is perfect for four people and it includes potatoes and eggs. There is no meat in this and it can be a perfect side dish with meat. This recipe would be great for the Coles Cook with Heart campaign which aims to reduce the risk of heart disease.

This recipe was from Coles website as it was a part of the cooking challenge


  • 6 baby Red Royale or baby white potatoes, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup (120g) frozen peas
  • 8 Coles Australian Free Range Eggs
  • 80g goat’s cheese, crumbled
  • 120g pkt Coles Australian 4 Leaf Salad



Heat a greased 20cm (base measurement) ovenproof non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add one-quarter of the potato. Cook for 1 min each side or until light golden and tender. Transfer to a plate. Repeat in 3 more batches with remaining potato.


Meanwhile, cook the peas in a medium saucepan of boiling water until tender. Drain well.


Lightly whisk the eggs in a medium bowl. Season.


Preheat grill on medium. Arrange half the potato over the base of the frying pan. Top with half the peas and half the goat’s cheese. Continue layering with the remaining potato, peas and goat’s cheese. Pour over the egg and gently swirl the pan to cover the potato mixture. Cook over medium heat for 6 mins or until almost set.


Cook under grill for 5 mins or until just set. Cut into wedges. Serve with salad leaves.