Eddie Shepherd is an award winning modern chef and cookbook author. At the forefront of modern vegetarian cuisine, Eddie uses innovative techniques and culinary flair to produce unique, exciting, vibrant dishes. Eddie explains how The Vegan Society’s trademark symbol has helped him to cook vegan:
A huge amount of what I cook is actually vegan and I’m often sourcing vegan ingredients, so the Vegan Trademark is a fantastic sign that you can trust an ingredient or a product is suitable for vegans.
Smoked Tofu, Plum and Rosemary Skewers
This small dish can be served before the start of a meal or as a snack.
It pairs smoked tofu, dressed with lemon and salt, alongside sweet, slightly caramelised plums, finished with aromatic rosemary.
It’s a simple dish given added impact by its presentation – serving the tofu and roast plums on rosemary skewers is a fun, interesting way to present these flavours but also adds aroma, texture and a visual element to the dish.
For the Roast Plums
400g Ripe Plums
250g Caster Sugar
Cut each plum in half and remove the stone. Then chop each half of the plum into three segments. Repeat this with all the plums.
Now toss the plum segments with the sugar in a bowl, making sure the plums are well coated with sugar.
Let the plums sit in the sugar for one hour.
Pre-heat your oven to 180°C.
After an hour in the sugar remove the plum segments and arrange them on a baking tray lined with baking parchment.
Cook the plums in the oven for 10-12 minutes until the sugar is just about all melted. The cooking times may vary a little for different ripeness of plums – if the plums are very soft cook for a couple of minutes less, if they are very firm give them an extra couple of minutes in the oven. Test a couple of segments first to get the timing just right before cooking the whole batch.
As soon as the plums come out of the oven sprinkle them with the chopped rosemary, then allow them to cool.
For the Tofu
One block of firm smoked tofu
Juice of one lemon
Two tablespoons olive oil
Large pinch maldon salt
10-12 rosemary sprigs
Cut the smoked tofu into 2cm cubes and place these in a bowl.
Dress the tofu cubes with the olive oil, lemon juice and salt.
Now strip the leaves off the bottom third of each of the rosemary sprigs.
Onto each rosemary skewer thread a cube of smoked tofu, a segment of roasted plum and then one more piece of smoked tofu
(From Chef Eddie Shepherd’s cookbook Simple Modern Vegetarian.)
About Eddie Shepherd
Eddie Shepherd is an award winning modern vegetarian chef, cookbook author and development chef.
At the forefront of modern vegetarian cuisine, Eddie takes inspiration from nature and uses innovative techniques to create exciting, unique food that contrast the wild and natural with controlled technique, precision and a modern aesthetic.
In the UK, Eddie has appeared at various points on TV, in and on the cover of magazines, demonstrating at various food festivals and industry shows and across a variety of publications and media.
In 2009 Eddie won ‘Cordon-verts’ ‘Chef of the future’ competition with his unique cooking. To see more of Eddie’s delicious recipes go to: www.veggiechef.co.uk
About Vegan Cuisine
Vegan food is so much a part of everyone’s diets these days; for example, many of us will eat vegan when we’re tucking into our ice cream or sorbet without even realising it. There’s such a wealth of tasty vegan food out there to love, from hot-dogs and pies, to gourmet cheeses and naughty choccies. And many people love to cook vegan too, like award-winning chef Eddie Shepherd.
But what does it mean to ‘eat vegan’? Put simply it’s enjoying foods that aren’t derived from animals or insects eg. meat, dairy, eggs or honey.
Veganism is also a protected belief; since 1993, veganism has been explicitly protected as a human right under Article 9 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights¹. And it’s also a valid, healthy diet that everyone can thrive on; The British Dietetic Association recently stated that, ‘…well-planned plant-based, vegan-friendly diets can be devised to support healthy living at every age and life-stage.’² So we should all love vegans!
The Vegan Society, famous for coining the word ‘vegan’, is about to celebrate its 70th anniversary and is helping many more people to love vegan and go vegan with confidence, encouraging more trusted Vegan Society Trademarked products to be available in shops, and taking veganism to the mainstream.
According to The Vegan Society:
Veganism is for everyone, anytime, whatever our lifestyle. There are so many aspects of the vegan lifestyle that can be adopted by anyone wanting to make a difference, with or without going vegan.
So you don’t have to be a vegan to love vegan food. And as Eddie says, “You can make some amazing vegan food with a little creativity and the vegan trademark makes this even easier.”
There are opportunities to cook vegan and fundraise for The Vegan Society. If you would like a fundraising pack or to join The Vegan Society, you can get in touch at email@example.com on +44 (0)121 523 1730 or just visit www.vegansociety.com
2 The British Dietetic Association, ‘Memorandum of Understanding between The Vegan Society and the British Dietetic Association’, 12th March 2014.