I’m what you might call an organised person.
Ever since I started working at Schumacher, about four years ago, I have a kept a record of the meals I make there. I’m not sure why I started doing this, but over the course of time this list has proved very handy as a reference for upcoming menu planning; when I flick through it, I stumble upon recipes that I might otherwise have let fall off my radar. Also, somehow, seeing the previous menus in their entirety seems to jog my tastebuds and spurs me to create new, different menus with different juxtaposing flavours. And, because the menus are seasonally based, I can see at a glance how each year some crops come in later, earlier, or not at all, and I find that quite interesting.
It occurred to me that this catalog of menus might be quite useful to other people as well. Because Schumacher has a vegetarian kitchen, each menu that I create is totally vegetarian and often – coincidentally – vegan. I know a lot of people who are trying to eat less meat but who don’t really know how to do that without resorting to pre-made tofu burgers and bean-heavy stews, and that’s not always necessary. (Did you know that almost all vegetables contain protein? Check it out here.) Each of my menus is constructed to be nutritionally balanced, especially when considered as part of a regular balanced diet.
In an effort to share this obsessive habit of mine, I have created The Unintentional Vegetarian category on this site*. Every week I will post a menu that I have created for the college. Recipes may or may not appear at the same time, but if you see something you would like to recreate, let me know and I’ll get to work on it!
Even though the menus I will be posting are my own, I am not the only one creating menus at the college. There are three other chefs at Schumacher, along with some part-time assistants, volunteers, and of course, the students themselves. We all work alongside each other in the kitchen, in varying degrees, and I think it’s fair to say that the meals we create are delicious, probably more so for being made together. So if you decide to make any of the menus I have posted, grab a friend, child, partner or random passerby, and get cooking. I guarantee that the love you put into it will make every dish a winner.
* I tried to create a separate page, much like the Cooking Tips page, but it doesn’t seem to be holding steady. And in the course of working on it, the Cooking Tips page has bizarrely disappeared. (Oh WordPress, you are a true frenemy!) Bear with me, and hopefully the pages will sort themselves out soon….