Nutritionist and plant-based food advocate Luke Hines is calling on carnivorous Aussies to give vegie-lovers a break.
Luke, who is working with fruit and vegetable grower Costa on its new Mush-Boom campaign to promote the health benefits of meat alternatives, says the perception that vegetarians are weak and frail is well past its use-by date. “You just need to have a bit of a scan for ‘vegan’ on social media and you go, ‘Hang on, they’re all lifting weights, training really hard, surfing, all that sort of stuff’,” he says.
Catering for vegetarians and vegans has never been easier, he adds, with myriad recipes to satisfy even the staunchest meat-head. “I actually use giant portobello mushrooms as a steak equivalent. I treat it just like a steak so you get that same look and feel and texture. You give it a little bit of seasoning and salt; a little bit of extra virgin olive oil; sear it both sides on the grill and what you get are those incredible char marks that you would on a typical grilled steak. Even the meat-lovers will be absolutely loving it.”
Elisa Siliato, the marketing and innovation manager of Costa’s mushroom category, says the company is right behind vegetarians and vegans in their quest for equality at the dinner table. “We’re backing them all the way because food should bring us together, not pull us apart,” Elisa says. “We’re calling on Australians to swap out one of their weekly meat dishes for a mushroom dish this year to not only support the vegie-lovers, but broaden their recipe repertoire. With a range of varieties, mushrooms can be added to so many different dishes and meals. People just need to understand how best to use them.”
Head to www.mushboom.com.au for some of the hottest meat-free recipes to hit the barbie this summer.