Viva Vegan

I love it when a meal is accidentally vegan and allergy-friendly. It's like a little bonus, the icing to my egg-free cake. Aw. It's no secret by now that I miss being in close proximity to hundreds of mexican restaurants - but with a little stocking up on some key ingredients at whole foods, it's quite simple to make your own little vegan mexican meal at home (if you're in London, that is).

The first key ingredient is refried beans (preferably black beans for a healthier touch). This is something you could attempt to make yourself, but I've tried and it wasn't pretty. It's not as simple as cooking your own beans and then mashing them up. This is an acquired skill that is best left to the professionals. Buy a can.

The second key ingredient is a ripe avocado. You could go for the whole shebang and make a dish of guacamole with all of the usual bits and pieces, or you could do what I did last night and just mash up an avocado with some lime juice and cilantro leaves and call it a day. This is a nice way of cooling down a spicy dish. Did I mention it is also vegan AND raw?

The third key ingredient is tortillas. Are? Is? Oh well. Since wraps are the next best thing, that's what we went with. Some nice soft whole wheat tortilla wraps, big enough to fit lots of black beans and veggies. It's a favorite dinner of ours - a kind of mini buffet, as you can see in the photo. And best of all, it's ready in minutes.

Vegan Fajitas

These quantities make enough stuff for 6 wraps

The particulars:

  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 red chili, roughly chopped
  • 1 yellow or red pepper, deseeded and sliced into long thin strips
  • 2 cups mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 avocado, mashed with fork
  • juice of 1 lime
  • handful of fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1 can refried black beans
  • 6 whole wheat tortillas (could use corn to make gluten-free)
  • tomato salsa (optional)
  1. Heat up some oil in a wok or large frying pan and start cooking the onion. Once translucent, add the garlic and red chili, stirring occasionally. Add in the cumin and paprika, salt and pepper, and continue to cook. Add the yellow pepper and mushrooms and stir-fry - keep it on a high heat, let it sizzle.
  2. Meanwhile, heat up the black beans in a small saucepan. Stir occasionally.
  3. Combine the mashed up avocado, lime juice, and coriander leaves in a small bowl
  4. Heat up the tortillas in a microwave - about 1 minute.
  5. Once the veggies, tortillas, and beans are all done, serve everything immediately.
  6. For one serving: take a tortilla, smear on a layer of black beans, followed by avocado, spoon in some veggies, and top with salsa if you want. Roll up and chow down.

Lesson learned: There's nothing fancy or refined about this meal. Just hearty and tasty ingredients for an evening when only quick and easy will do.