Oprah Winfrey, media tycoon extraordinaire and longtime Meatless Monday supporter, recently reaffirmed her support of the movement.
Oprah interviewed Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The Humane Society (a Meatless Monday partner organization) and author of the new book, Humane Economy, on her OWN network show SuperSoul Sunday. During the interview, Pacelle offered up participating in Meatless Monday as an easy action step anyone can adopt to move towards a more plant-based diet. Oprah then took to Twitter to share her support of Meatless Monday with her more than 33 million followers.
— Oprah Winfrey (@Oprah) August 21, 2016
Oprah first showed support for the Meatless Monday movement in 2009, when she and journalist Michael Pollan discussed how eating less meat is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint. “I’m not talking about going vegetarian,” Pollan said on The Oprah Winfrey Show. “But even one meatless day a week – a Meatless Monday, which is what we do in our household – if everybody in America did that, that would be the equivalent of taking 20 million midsize sedans off the road.”
Then in 2011, Oprah again interviewed Pollan and another Meatless Monday friend and supporter, author Kathy Freston, on her show. After challenging her staff to go vegan for a week, Oprah decided that a simple way to inspire the Harpo team to stay in the habit of eating more plant-based meals would be to implement Meatless Monday in the Harpo cafeteria. “Meatless Monday! Meatless Monday!” Oprah shouted as she shared the decision with her staff and viewers.
We’re honored to count Oprah among our supporters and we look forward to keeping up with her as she continues to share her enthusiasm for the movement with her millions of fans. Stay tuned!
Try a New Twist on Eggplant this Meatless Monday
Fresh vegetables make for delicious meatless meals, especially now that eggplant is in season. If you’ve never had eggplant before, now is the time to try it – and if you have had it before, now is the time to try it in one of these exciting recipes!
Hearty and versatile, eggplant compliments a huge variety of spices and blends perfectly into a number of classic, multi-cultural recipes. We’ve collected eggplant recipes from Meatless Monday bloggers to help get you started exploring all the culinary possibilities this meatless staple has to offer. Get them now while they’re in season to enjoy their sun-ripened flavor at the peak of freshness!
Hungry for some more excellent eggplant recipes?
Download the Meatless Monday Eggplant e-cookbook from our friends at Dominex Natural Foods!
Make tasty meatless meals with summer produce all year long!
Summer is a wonderful time to sample new fruits and vegetables – but how can you enjoy those flavors all year long? Preserve your summer favorites quickly and easily by freezing them! Use one of these three methods to freeze your particular produce for the colder months.
Individual Quick Freeze
Begin by washing and drying small, fleshy fruits like fresh berries or tomatoes. Place each fruit on a baking sheet and lay flat in a freezer. Make sure each item of produce has space and isn’t touching its neighbors – if they are touching when they freeze, you’ll have to use them all at once. Allow the produce to freeze thoroughly over 2-4 hours. Once frozen, move your fruits to an airtight container or freezer storage bag. For more on freezing and using berries, click here.
Blanch and Freeze
Some fruits and vegetables like squash and zucchini should be quickly blanched before freezing. To blanch, bring a large pot of water to a boil and have a bowl of ice water standing by. Clean and chop your veggies, boil them for about one minute, then quickly remove and place straight into the ice water. Pat dry, freeze, and store. You can also blanch cooking greens in the microwave, and peaches can be blanched whole – just slit the skin of the fruit before boiling. For more about how blanching helps preserve your food, click here.
Freeze in Liquid
Fresh summer herbs can be easily preserved by freezing them in liquid. Clean your herbs and chop or dice them to a small, manageable size. Pour a teaspoon of each herb into the molds of an ice cube tray, and then add a cooking oil like olive or canola oil. Make sure the herbs are saturated with liquid, then allow them to freeze solid. Pack away your produce and keep frozen for later use. For more on preserving herbs, click here.
There are a few foods that shouldn’t go in the freezer, but many fruits and veggies can be preserved with minimal preparations and supplies. Thawed produce works wonderfully in a variety of recipes from soups and sauces to baked goods. For more information on what to freeze click here, and find out more about cooking with frozen foods here. Frozen foods can last several months in the freezer, giving you the opportunity to enjoy the flavors of summer in your meatless meals all fall and winter long!
Love Meatless Monday? Love dining out? Having a tough time combining the two? Let’s unite to let our favorite restaurants and chefs know we are looking for meatless dining options on Mondays!
Stay cool this Meatless Monday with Gazpacho
Summer is in full effect and that means cool foods are on the menu. This includes gazpacho, a soup that is typically made with raw produce and served cold. A dish with ancient roots, gazpacho was originally prepared using a mortar and pestle. These days a blender or food processor will do the trick, but the essence of the dish remains the same. It’s a nourishing meal on a hot summer day, and will keep you cool while still delivering a hefty dose of fruits and veggies.
While the most popular version of the dish features tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers, almost any type of produce can be incorporated with a little creativity. Remember this tip from Food52: “If the vegetables pair well in a salad, they’ll probably pair well here.” And “When in doubt, color coordinate!”
Ready to find the gazpacho that will makes your taste buds sing? Take a look through these tasty and inventive recipes from Meatless Monday Bloggers and friends. From a light and bright watermelon base to a creamy garbanzo bean version, there’s something for everyone!
Meatless Monday rocked out with Paul McCartney, founder of Meat Free Monday, last night for his One On One tour at Met Life Stadium in NJ. A match made in meatless heaven, Meatless Monday along with Sir Paul continue to push the boundaries and encourage people to improve their health and the health of the planet by going meat free one day a week. These efforts have inspired over 40 countries worldwide to adopt their own versions of Meatless Monday.
We are grateful to have met so many people who already support going meatless on Mondays as well as those that are starting with us today! Here are some of our favorite pictures from our photo booth last night which perfectly capture an unforgettable evening.
National Farmers Market Week, August 7-13, is a wonderful time to explore the markets in your community and plan new and exciting meatless meals with local fruits and veggies. In honor of the week-long celebration, we’ve put together this list of protein-packed produce to look for at the market and add to your menu plan. These delicious (and nutritious) veggies make it easy to create balanced meals for Meatless Monday!
1. Green Peas
At the farmers market you’ll often find fresh-picked green peas still in the peapod. Peas have a powerful serving of protein – up to 9 grams of per cup when cooked –and are also rich in fiber, potassium, iron, zinc, folate, B vitamins, vitamin A and vitamin K. Make them the star of your entrée or add them to soup, salad, or stir fry.
Farm-fresh broccoli is as rich in flavor and fiber as it is in protein. Broccoli can be enjoyed raw, steamed, roasted, stir-fried, baked in casseroles or stirred into soups. Broccoli provides over 5 grams of protein per cup and plenty of vitamin A, niacin, vitamin E, vitamin C and vitamin K and high levels of potassium, calcium and phosphorus.
Mushrooms are a protein-rich food but are better known for their savory flavors, meaty textures, and versatility in the kitchen. On their own one cup of raw mushrooms has roughly 2 grams of protein – add them to dishes with other veggies for even more flavor and vegetable protein. Ask farmers in your local market which varieties you should try.
4. Brussels Sprouts
If you’ve never seen brussels sprouts fresh on the stalk, you’ve got to find them in person at your farmers market this season. This tiny, protein-packed (about 4 grams of protein per cup) cruciferous vegetable may have gotten a bad rap in popular culture, but you’ll love what happens when you roast them with a little olive oil and your favorite spices.
Asparagus is a wonderful vegetable for summer being perfect for the grill, roasting, quick blanching, or even eating raw. This veggie contains up to 4 grams of protein per cup and also adds a lot of fiber and minerals like potassium, calcium, iron, folate and chromium to your meal. Asparagus looks fancy, but it’s an easy-to-cook nutritional powerhouse.
Artichokes might be known for their flavor and fiber content, but they have substantial protein to offer as well (roughly the same as spinach). These flowers can be blended, steamed, roasted, or transformed into a delicious dip. Get fresh artichokes at the farmers market and your dinner guests will be more than impressed with a meatless spread.
Spinach is probably the most famous protein-rich veggie in the bunch; this vibrant seasonal green is not to be missed. Spinach shines as a raw ingredient in salad, sautéed with other veggies, or blended in green juices and smoothies. With over 5 grams of protein per cup, spinach makes getting your daily servings of protein easy.
Kale is a versatile, protein-filled green that works well in everything from salads and smoothies to soups and casseroles. With nearly as much protein per serving as spinach, kale offers fiber, vitamin A, and more vitamin C per serving than oranges. Farmers cultivate a variety of types of kale, including curly, frilled, and textured “dinosaur” leaves.
A cruciferous cousin of broccoli, cauliflower makes a moderate protein impact of its own while adding texture and body to meatless meals. Cut your fresh head of cauliflower into thick slices width-wise to make cauliflower steaks, chop into florets and swap in for broccoli in your favorite recipes, or mash it with potatoes to a less starchy alternative.
Farmers markets offer a huge variety of protein-rich foods to make your Meatless Monday fresh, tasty and healthy. Stop by your local market to find even more ideas for delicious meals this season!
Hungry for more fresh farmers market finds? Tour the Union Square Greenmarket with Chef Bryce Shuman of Betony Restaurant in NYC:
Meatless Monday will be rocking out with Sir Paul McCartney Aug. 7 when he takes his “One on One” tour to Met Life Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ. While most of us here at Meatless Monday only play air guitar, we share something hugely important with this great cultural icon: the commitment to encourage people to improve their health and the health of the planet by going meat free one day a week.
A passionate advocate of many causes, McCartney in 2009 launched Meat Free Monday within the UK after many years of being a staunch vegetarian. Since then, along with his daughters Mary and Stella, he has created a website, a cookbook, and a vehicle to inspire activism at the grassroots level. Like Meatless Monday in the U.S., Sir Paul’s Meat Free Monday has inspired chefs, schools, parents, and students to make conscious choices to change their eating habits. Between us, all this effort has inspired over 40 countries worldwide to adopt their own versions of Meatless Monday!
Meatless Monday is excited to host a table at the “One on One” concert, so stop by and say hello. We’ll be featuring a photo booth with a special frame commemorating the concert and raffling off prizes for cookbooks and more. Plus, you’ll get an intimate chance to chat with us and get great tips on how to adopt Meatless Monday both in your home and in your community.
So, in honor of Sir Paul’s unbelievable 700 million albums sold across the globe, let’s “Come Together” on Aug. 7 and have a really “Beautiful Night”!
With a nod to the summer spectacles expected from Latin America this month, the last dish in our “No Cook Summer Recipe” video series brings you a culinary surprise: Vegan Ceviche Lettuce Cups. A surprise because ceviche, originally brought to the Americas 2000 years ago by Moorish women from Granada, is traditionally made with raw fish, marinated in chopped veggies, cilantro, and lime juice. Peruvians finally perfected the dish, but today it’s devoured throughout South (and North) America. In fact, Olympians will be sure to find ceviche shacks up and down Rio’s beaches. The problem is, raw fish can go bad fast.
But hooray! Our vegan version is way healthier, easier to prepare, and equally delicious. We start out with sliced palm of hearts, add cubed tofu instead of fish, toss in diced plum tomatoes and cliantro, then kick up the temperature with minced onion, garlic, and serrano peppers—the latter a staple in salsa and hotter than jalapenos! Before marinating, we’ve added crumpled seaweed—not just for the crackle, but also fiber and protein. One hour later, the sliced avocados make an appearance with two squirts of lime—then all get packed into lettuce cups that serve as perfect tostada substitutes.
Talk about delicoso! And healthy! Even those ladies from Granada would have been pretty impressed.
With zucchinis at the height of their season, what can you do with this popular form of summer squash that won’t require an oven or stove? Just in time arrives our latest “No Cook Summer Recipe” video, featuring Pad Thai Zoodle Salad.
Pad Thai is a traditional street food from Thailand, a vegetable stir-fry made specifically with rice noodles to distinguish it from other Asian cuisine. In our version, we’ve retained the classic Pad Thai flavors but gave it a healthier spin, exchanging rice noodles for raw zucchini. You can find zucchini easily in local groceries and even fresher and organic at farmer’s markets. If you’ve been growing your own zucchini, perhaps you’ve got a major surplus right now. This is a great way to use it up!
For our Pad Thai Zoodle Salad, we’ve used a spiralizer to create spirally noodles from the zucchini (watch our video). If you don’t have a spiralizer, a Julienne cutter works well, and you can even use a box grater. Tossed into the salad goes sliced red peppers, shredded carrots, chopped green onion, and tamari-marinated tofu chunks, sprinkled all over with crushed peanuts. So light, so easy, so delicious, and so much fun to eat those spirals with chopsticks!
Next week stay tuned for our last “No Cook Summer Recipe” video: Vegan Ceviche Lettuce Cups. It’s a fresh veggie “sandwich” delightfully inspired by the cuisine of Latin America.