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more food

A week on and I am still interested in building up the delicious cooking references. I actually made a decent leek and potato broth the other night, which I've never managed before. That's how pitiful my cooking skills are: I am impressed I managed a broth. However, tagging today's recipes I found the great bugbear of vegetarians and vegans: pointless use of meat stock. There's a recipe for carrots & leeks in beer (third down the page) which, whilst it didn't make me go "mmmmm" like the idea of beery courgette tempura, does have an immediate appeal. Cheap seasonal veg + beer = yum. Except it uses chicken stock. Why? Why, FFS?

Obviously, this is easy to modify to vegetarian stock, but why is chicken stock required to start with? I remember the taste of chicken and I can't see why that would be required to go with the tastes of carrots, leeks and bitter. Surely the prime flavour is going to be from the bitter? Will the use of chicken stock impart extra proteiny goodness to the food? If thickening is required, why not use a little milk (for vegetarians) or cornflower (for vegans)?

Is it just standard lack-of-thinking by meat-eating recipe writers? Are they like one of my family who, when faced with my conversion to vegetarianism in the '80s, offered me oxtail soup "with the meaty bits strained out"? Or like Spain, where I have long since learnt to specify "sin jamon" when ordering a cheese omelette because for some reason ham doesn't count as a meat?

So, the upshot is that the moosifer cooks listings will now also include the odd note on how to make things vegetarian.

Posted @ 11:29 am on Saturday, October 01, 2005
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