Friday, 27 January 2012

Say 'NO' to sachet flavourings!

Recently my Mum, who isn't vegan and actually has a relatively poor diet, bought back a lot of 'Wonton seasoning' and presented it to me at the kitchen table.  Needless to say I was absolutely horrified!  For those who are unaware of this vile sachet of powder, it's commonly used in 'instant soups' for Chinese Wonton bases.  Traditionally Wonton soup is made from meat stock and ground dried fish but these days people are too lazy, instead using readily 'prepared' sachet powders akin to the Cup-a-soups and Nesquik milkshakes.  
I don't know about you but I am really wary of anything that is 'instant'.  I believe from time to time it's not going to harm our sturdy human bodies, but I do think it's unnecessary and puts a lot of strain on our health if eaten regularly.  The salt, sugar and mono-sodium glutamate content in 'instant' products go through the roof, and some people wonder why they're bloated and dehydrated!  
Unfortunately it's not just the Chinese who like to use instant soup bases but the whole world is beginning to get wrapped up in being fast, instant and unnatural.  It's a shame as much of this comes from busy lifestyles and poor food addiction.  Despite working 6 days a week, I put food as my utmost priority when it comes to health, which is why I won't be touching those soup sachets any time soon.

Now when it comes to seasoning I prefer to keep it simple using pinches of sea salt, natural soy sauce, maple syrup or even sesame oil.  The list goes on but it's a whole adventure looking into clean seasoning and natural flavours.  Gone are the days when I will use instant powders and prefer to make my own veggie broth or kombu soup.  This way, I can feel the power surging through my body and I get less of a hangover the next day.
This leads onto a picture I wanted to share with you... behold my bunches of fresh dill and flat leaf parsley that I picked up at the vegetable market!

In the summer I keep a really pretty herb garden on our window sill but when it comes to the winter, I'm very bad at up-keeping it.  That's why I buy a lot of fresh cut herbs and I make sure they are strong, vibrant and fragrant.  Dill is absolutely fantastic with vegan cheese and goes well with capers, olives and onions.  I love parsley in everything from carrot soup to Tabbouleh.  Right now I enjoy it in my vegetable juices as it gives it another dimension.  It's like drinking a delicious, gourmet salad!

I'm off to the farmers market tomorrow to see what organic goods I can pick up.  What are your favourite natural flavourings?


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