I am a vegetarian and have been for over twenty years. I have dabbled with veganism but haven't been able to quite do that. However, I do drink soya milk and use soya spread, but then again I do use milk in sauces (if I'm cooking for the whole family) and do use butter in cakes. One year when I went vegan for Lent, my younger son's birthday fell in the middle of it and I baked him a vegan birthday cake. Poor boy, the things we mother's do to our kids! He didn't complain and enjoyed it, but I don't think I'd get away with that now! He loves his meat too, like his dad. Only my older son is vegetarian and he came to that himself.
Where is this leading, you might ask? Well, I have a little recipe for you! It's something I threw together one night so quantities is guess work. However, this is the most delicious dish and I always return for seconds.
Red Lentil and Tomato Bake
Red lentils (washed)
1 onion (chopped)
veg stock cube
tomatoes (chopped) (I use fresh tomatoes - either a handful of cherry toms or two/three large ones)
squeeze of tomato puree
one half to one whole tsp of Marmite
herbs (your choice)
potatoes (thinly sliced)
Fry onion until soft. Add the lentils with enough water to cover plus a little extra and set to boil. Add stock cube and simmer until lentils are softening.Add more water if needed. Stir in the chopped tomatoes and cook for a few minutes. Season with herbs etc, plus Marmite and a squeeze of tomato puree. Stir. The consistency should not be too wet.
Pour the mixture into an ovenproof dish and cover with the sliced potato. Sprinkle the grated cheese on top and put in an oven Gas mark 6 until nicely browned. Serve with any veg you like (or salad) and enjoy.