Vegetarian Holidays

Celebrate Vegetarian Holidays

Holiday celebrations may seem challenging for vegetarians, but it can be a fun adventure, too. They are opportunities to enjoy a variety of great dishes, and at the same time, share the bounty of vegetarian food with your non-veggie friends and family.

I'm looking forward to hearing your holiday stories and your suggestions for a successful Vegetarian Holiday. I'd also love to hear from meat-eaters that may be concerned about providing alternatives to their vegetarian guests.

Image: Vegetarian Pastichio, © Julianne Gentile

Vegetarian Pastichio
Vegetarian Pastichio

Pastichio is a type of Greek Lasagna that my husband's family serves for special occasions. Since we are vegetarians, I make a meatless variety. This recipe includes dairy products, but can easily be made with vegan substitutes and would be just as yummy. This is a quick and easy twist on lasagna, and the kids love it!

For Vegans: replace the cheese with Daiya or other vegan cheese, select a vegan faux meat like Gimme Lean, replace the milk with unflavored soy milk or cashew cream, and finally replace the eggs with Ener-G or other vegan egg replacer. It's just as yummy!

  • Prep time: 30 min
  • Cook time: 30 min
  • Ready in: 1 hour
  • Yields: A house full of people

Ingredients

  • 1 lb elbow macaroni
  • or ziti
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 cups milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 cup grated parmesano reggiano cheese
  • 1/2 small chopped onion (or use minced onion
  • as desired)
  • salt
  • pepper
  • and minced garlic to taste
  • 1 package of your favorite faux meat crumbles (1 can Worthington Burger or 12oz package of Yves Vegge Ground
  • etc)
  • 12 oz. tomato sauce
  • Mild shredded cheddar cheese
  • Shredded mozzarella cheese

Instructions

  1. Pastichio is usually seasoned with cinnamon rather than garlic and paprika. I prefer the garlic/paprika combo, but I urge you to experiment and see what ingredients you prefer.
  2. Cook pasta until al dente, drain
  3. Prepare a large casserole or baking dish
  4. Heat butter and olive oil and add flour to form a roux
  5. Cook the roux to remove the flour taste, but do not burn
  6. Beat eggs and milk together an stir slowly into pan
  7. Stir in the Parmesan cheese
  8. Stir until there are no lumps
  9. Place a layer of macaroni in your baking dish
  10. Pour half of the sauce over the macaroni and press firmly into pan
  11. Top with shredded cheeses
  12. Mix the faux meat, chopped onion, and tomato sauce and layer over the macaroni
  13. Press firmly into pan
  14. Follow with a final layer of macaroni and the rest of the sauce
  15. Cover with the shredded cheeses
  16. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 30 minutes or until topping is bubbly.
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Any Vegetarians?

Do you expect to have any Vegetarians or Vegans attending your holiday parties this year?

  • Yes, we are all vegetarian or vegan!
  • Yes, we always have a few vegetarians or vegans at our parties.
  • I'm a vegetarian/vegan, but I'm usually the token veggie.
  • No, we are all happy omnivores!
  • No, I've never met a vegetarian/vegan.
  • We rarely have vegetarians/vegans at our parties, but it's possible.
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One of my favorite cookbooks!

The Conscious Cook: Delicious Meatless Recipes That Will Change the Way You Eat
The Conscious Cook: Delicious Meatless Recipes That Will Change the Way You Eat

I received this cookbook as a gift and it's one of my favorites. Tal Ronnen shows how to make gourmet quality vegan dishes with ease. The ingredients are easy to find as the recipes feature whole foods and popular vegan brands like Gardein. This book is a perfect start to design an irresistible vegan holiday menu.

 

What Does God Think?

As an outspoken vegetarian who is passionate about animals, I often find myself debating my dietary choices with family and friends. I've been told a number of times that God created animals for us to eat. Other religions believe that God wants us to do no harm, so eating animals is against the rule of God.

Since this time of year is full of religious holidays, I'd be curious to hear what the visitors to this lens have to say on this topic.

What does God think about eating animals?

Animals were put of this earth to feed the humans.

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    God believes we should do no wrong, and that includes eating animals.

    hlkljgk 4 years ago from Western Mass

    i don't believe in god, but it would make sense to me that if there was one, he wouldn't be too fond of our mass producing meat ways...

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        I am the queen of the UnMeatloaf. I'm constantly changing my recipes and experimenting with different ingredients. I've made so many different vegetarian and vegan meatloaf recipes, I can't even remember all of them. ...


      Vegetarian Chatter - Tell us about your vegetarian holidays 9 comments

      anonymous 3 years ago

      @Sami4u LM: hi can you tall me


      hlkljgk profile image

      hlkljgk 4 years ago from Western Mass

      Vegetarian Pastichio is so yummy!


      KimGiancaterino profile image

      KimGiancaterino 4 years ago

      The holidays are a perfect time to show our friends and family how tasty vegetarian cuisine can be. I make a similar vegetarian lasagna, and am anxious to try your Pastichio.


      Lee Hansen profile image

      Lee Hansen 5 years ago from Vermont

      Have a happy, healthy veggie holiday! Peace, Lee


      WindyWintersHubs profile image

      WindyWintersHubs 5 years ago from Vancouver Island, BC

      I love all kinds of veggies and trying new recipes. Although my hubby and I aren't vegetarians we do eat 2-3 (and more in the summer) meatless dinners. Lensrolling to green veggies!


      juliannegentile profile image

      juliannegentile 5 years ago from Cleveland, Ohio, US Author

      @julieannbrady: Feel free to stop by whenever you come to Cleveland. I'll be happy to cook up a feast of veggies anytime (or we can go hit a Cleveland veggie restaurant).


      julieannbrady 5 years ago

      Well, I am game to try vegetarian holidays -- when shall I arrive? Ho Ho Ho and a very Merry Christmas my dear.


      juliannegentile profile image

      juliannegentile 5 years ago from Cleveland, Ohio, US Author

      @Sami4u LM: Thank for for your kindness!


      Sami4u LM profile image

      Sami4u LM 5 years ago

      Hi,

      A sprinkling of Angel Dust for Christmas :)

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