The meat industry is coming under increasing scrutiny because of its significant impact on climate change. Scientists are recommending people to reduce their consumption of animal products and consume more plant-based foods or switch to plant-based diets like the vegan diet. Also, more people are aware of this, and as a result, there is an increasing demand for meat alternatives. So, nowadays in supermarkets, you can see many meat substitutes that are made using legumes, cereals, vegetables, and other ingredients. Moreover, vegan burgers are gaining popularity because they taste almost like non vegan ones. Read on to know more about vegan meat alternatives.
Tofu is the most popular and one of the most widely used meat alternatives used in the vegan meal, and other plant-based food preparations. It is a rich source of protein that is used in many Asian cuisines for hundreds of years. Its calorie content is low compared to meat, and hence it is healthier. Depending on the amount of water contained in it, there are three types of tofu, i.e. scrambled, soft, and firm. Besides, original tofu tastes bland, and it easily absorbs the flavors of other ingredients added along with it. So, it is a versatile ingredient that can be added to several recipes.
Tofu is made by first soaking soybeans; they are then mashed along with the water to form a fine puree. This puree is then filtered using a cheesecloth to separate the fibrous residue from the soy milk. The soy milk is then heated to a temperature just below the boiling point to curdle it, and then it is cooled down. Next, the curdled soy solids are pressed into slabs of tofu with different consistencies. Also, the leftover solids are dehydrated and used as chunks, cutlets, or mince.
Soya protein, also known as soya chunks, is an inexpensive and widely used meat alternative. It is dehydrated soy solids that can be easily prepared by adding water to it. Besides, it is a popular meat alternative that can be used in a variety of dishes as it easily absorbs the flavors of other ingredients used in a recipe. Furthermore, it is an ideal ingredient that can be used in vegan or vegetarian burgers, meatballs, cutlets, etc.
Tempeh is another soy-based meat alternative that can be used in a wide variety of vegan meal preparation. It is made by fermenting soybeans which is then mixed with other grains and legumes to form cakes; it has high protein and fiber content. Due to this, it is ideal to make tempeh part of a balanced diet.
These are the most popular meat alternatives used in the vegan diet and other plant-based diets, especially due to their high protein content.