Sunday, July 26, 2009

Iron Chef: Vegan!

Iron Chef: Vegan is a celebration of culinary creativity. Its goal is to provide you with a chance to:

1. Green the way you eat.
Vegan cuisine is fun, delicious, healthy and offers endless creative possibilities. But perhaps most excitingly it offers an opportunity to green our lives where we make a significant impact: our food. Vegan eating (even on an occassional basis) provides you with a more sustainable way to eat.

2. Get inspired.
Iron Chef: Vegan is a chance for culinary exploration and adventure. Challenge your creative side. Try something completely different. Find a whole new world to taste!

3. Discover how delicious healthy can be.
One of the best realizations I've come to in my life is about the direct relationship between how nutritious a dish is and how delicious it is. That's why one of the criteria of choosing the key ingredient is its nutritonal profile. Iron Chef: Vegan is about encouraging the enjoyment of healthy foods.

How it works:
The challenge: create a dish using The Key Ingredient in some way.

While there can be as many other flavours as you would like, each dish should showcase The Key Ingredient.

Extra points (in terms of coolness) if you go for a multi course meal! Some examples of courses you could include: hors d'oeuvres, soup, salad, entree, dessert.

How to enter
Submit your entries* to me at batchild23 at hotmail dot com with the subject line "Iron Chef: Vegan entry". If you have a website, you can just send me a link to your delectable dish. Or join the facebook group and share your entries there. Make sure to also include a caption that sums up your tasty treat.

Your first challenge!

The Key Ingredient: Beets (Beta vulgaris)
This round of Iron Chef: Vegan will end August 23, 2009.

Native to the mediterranian and first cultivated by ancient Romans, the beet is in the same family as quinoa, spinach and swiss chard.

The beet is prized for its subtle sweetness and its impressive nutritional contributions. This root vegetable is high in B vitamins, folate, manganese and dietary fibre while remaining low in calories. Not only does the beet help protect against heart diseases and colon cancer, but as a primary source of betaine it also works to reduce inflammation.

While beets are famous for their rich purple-red colouring, they also come in other colour variations: yellow, white, and candy-striped (red and white). Adding an acid such as vinegar or lemon juice while cooking will brighten the colour. Salt on the other hand will dull the colour and so should be added near the end of your recipe.

Typically beets are enjoyed pickled or in a borscht. But this versatile root vegetable, which can be enjoyed cooked or raw, has so much more potential! So go crazy and let your imagination run wild in this quest for culinary innovation!

Get all your entries in by August 23, 2009!

*note: entries and your links to your blogs may be posted here on Veganlicious! If you don't want them to be, that's cool just let me know!

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