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Book Review: Broke Vegan

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I want to start this blog by saying that I’m not vegan. The definition of a vegan is: A person who loves animals and doesn’t want to contribute to their suffering. Someone who cares about the planet and our global health. A person who wants to feel well in their bodies and lose weight.

Whilst I agree with the sentiments above, the way I choose to eat is by:
* Eating lots more non-starchy vegetables, bought from my local greengrocer
* Consuming non-processed, home cooked food
* No sugar, grains or dairy
* Eating grass fed, hormone free meat from my local butcher
* Eating only free range, organic eggs

I’m trying to get Mark and Jack to eat this way but it’s a slow process. After eating their own body weight in chocolate and crap over Christmas, we are not now buying said crap and I’m trying really hard to encourage them to eat the meals I cook for myself. Mark loves my curries and said they were much better than a processed version he asked me to make recently. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. Early days…

Mark recently spotted a book in Tesco which he thought I’d like. It’s Broke Vegan by Saskia Sidey. It was only £6.50 so cost as much as a couple of lattes (which we don’t drink anymore!).

What It’s All About

It’s just bigger than A5 in size so super handy to pop in your bag.

It’s split into a helpful intro and then divided into pantry staples; essential dry stores; breakfast and brunch, easy weeknight meals ready in 20, feeding a crowd on a budget or saving time and money by batch booking and, finally a section called “something sweet” for those needing something sweet after your meals.

What I liked about Broke Vegan

I liked the handy size.
The fact that it was non-preachy (sorry vegans but some of you can be).
Recipes were easy to follow and not difficult.
I liked the sections on dressings and various pasta options.
The photographs didn’t look too daunting.

Here are a few options from each section.

Breakfast and Brunch including:
Speedy sourdough
Any berry muffins
Frozen smoothie bowl

Batch Cooking including:
Confit tomatoes
Chilli con veggie
Sticky sweet aubergines

Ready in 20 including:
Kimchi pancakes with dipping sauce
Cauliflower nuggets
Back of the fridge fritters

Impress a Crowd including:
Tofu tacos
Pizza 5 ways
Any vegetable tart

Something Sweet including:
Chocolate mousse
Lemon, coconut and cardamom cake
Leftover porridge flapjacks

I’ve yet to try any of the recipes from the book as we only bought it on the weekend, but I can’t wait to give a few of them a go.

Whether you’re a vegan or whether you just want to eat more healthily by adding more veg into your and your family’s diet, then I would definitely suggest popping this in your basket as you navigate the aisles.

As an aside, I recently read this passage on a blog by Alexandra Jamieson ( and it pretty much sums up how I feel about food.

What I Believe…
I believe there is a middle way. There is no one way that everyone should live or eat. People can still love animals and care about protecting the environment and honor their own animal bodies and consume the foods that they need.

I believe there are many paths to health.

I believe you can love and care about animal welfare and still consume them.

I believe that a vegan, whole-foods diet saved my life and is a delicious, valid, healthy style of eating for many people.

I believe that a vegan diet should be promoted as one of many possible ways to get the body and life that people crave.

I believe most people should be eating more vegetables and less processed, chemicalized, processed junk food.

I believe we should restructure the way animals are raised so that they live in more natural, comfortable, humane surroundings and stop force-feeding them 80% of all antibiotics used in the US.

I believe humans are animals. And some animals need to eat other animals to be healthy. Some do not.

And I believe in the innate kindness of people. And that by having compassion for each other, no matter how we eat, we are creating a new food culture, and a better world.

A culture and world that is free of shame.

And I am still passionately devoted to helping as many people reach their ultimate health as I can. By helping them accept their cravings and working with their unique bodies to create lives of meaning, freedom and radical self-acceptance.

It has been such a huge relief to me to stand in the full view of the people I know and respect. To state my truth from a place of self-acceptance instead of shame. And I hope you’ll join me in exploring the evolution of your diet, wellness and life dreams.”

I couldn’t have said it better myself.

Images copyright Mark Roberts

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