Monday, July 1, 2013

Taco Salad for Meat Free Monday

Did you know skipping meat even for one day can help keep greenhouse gases down? Meat Free Mondays is a movement that has been in the scene since 2009 founded by Paul McCartney with his daughters Mary and  Stella. Sort of an ode to their vegetarian wife/mother, Linda McCartney. Their purpose besides bringing awareness to lowering greenhouse gas is to show its benefits from a healthy aspect, and money saving benefits. "Eat less meat + more veg = save money!" Sign me up!

It now has a large number of supporters ranging from big name businesses to big name chefs and celebs like Gwyneth Paltrow, Leona Lewis and Emma Thompson. Click for more information about Meat Free Mondays.

So now I am posting to show my support on this fine Monday, Meat Free Monday!

I love Mexican food, I actually love all Latin cuisines, but today I chose to share a Taco Salad, as you can see from the photo below, the brown granulates you see is not ground beef, but ground walnuts. Yes, Walnuts! I know a few vegan friends that have tried this and sworn how tasty it was so I tried it last week and YES! It is delicious. I even had a meat eater friend try it and she loved it as well. The recipe for the walnuts is from nutritionist Kimberly Snyder. The salad is your basic romaine lettuce, tomatoes, avocados, and chopped cilantro with lemon juice and onions.

Walnut "beef" filling for Taco Salad:
2 cups walnuts
1 Tbs. cumin
1/2 Tbs. coriander
2 Tbs. low sodium tamari
1 tsp. chili powder
From Kimberly Snyder's website: "For the taco filling: Put the walnuts in a food processor with the blade in place, and process until chunky. Scrape the ground nuts into a bowl, and mix in the cumin, coriander, chili powder, and cayenne. Add the tamari and mix again. To save time: just chop the walnuts by hand on a cutting board, and then mix the spices in, then toss in the tamari last. That way you won’t have to clean up the food processor!
Make a quick salsa by mixing the chopped tomatoes, onion, cilantro, and lemon juice."
Once complete add everything to your salad and there you have it! 
Please let me know your thoughts once you try this. I plan to also purchase the McCartney girl's cookbook, The Meat Free Monday Cookbook. It is not a gluten free cookbook, so I will thumb through and any dishes that are safe enough for us all. I will share with you any or all tasty dishes when I've made it.