Skip to content

Chef Ceren Topal cooking a General Tso Cauliflower dish.

Enjoy Veganuary one delicious bite at a time

Watch our chefs’ tasty plant-based cooking demos here

Good news if you’re taking part in this year’s Veganuary and would like some tasty dish inspiration? Four of our talented chefs, based at Hive, have given a cooking demo on how to prepare some easy and delicious vegan dishes that can be enjoyed this month or at any time of year. They show us how to prepare some classic dish favourites the plant-based way. See links to the demos below.

The number of people taking part in Veganuary continues to rise every year. In fact, a record number are expected to sign up for this year’s challenge. By the end of this month, the not-for-profit organisation, Veganuary, expects to have reached the milestone of 2 million participants since its launch in 2014*.

The annual one-month campaign was started by a British couple with a strong passion for veganism. They launched a pledge encouraging people to switch to a plant-based diet for the month.

Veganuary’s mission to encourage people to try a vegan lifestyle goes hand in hand with the Unilever Future Foods ambition, which has plants and alternative proteins at its centre. That’s why our brands such as The Vegetarian Butcher, Hellmann’s, Magnum and Ben & Jerry’s are committed to making the journey towards plant-based eating accessible to all by creating tasty vegan alternatives to traditional foods.

Our talented chefs have a key part to play in Unilever’s foods innovation journey. They inspire our business and help consumers and professional chefs to create delicious and healthy meals that benefit both people and planet. Chefs’ innovative solutions show how going vegan is about enriching your life with new flavours and experiences, rather than denying yourself.

Watch our Hive chefs’ tasty cooking demos

Chefs are masters of flavour. Their food expertise has a crucial role to play in supporting people to successfully transition to plant-based diets.

Hive-based chefs Ceren Topal, Leonardo Carvalho, Ozgun Ozenen and Evert Vermandel show us how to cook these four tasty vegan dishes:

1. General Tso Cauliflower by Ceren Topal

General Tso Cauliflower

This heavy-on-the-veggies General Tso Cauliflower is ready in just 35 minutes. We’ve swapped out deep-fried chicken for antioxidant-rich cauliflower, baked in spices and then smothered in a sweet yet spicy sauce. Serve it with rice and sprinkle of spring onions. Enjoy this tasty Veganuary recipe by our chef Ceren Topal!

Find a demo video here:
https://www.instagram.com/tv/

Ingredients (2-3 portions):

  • 800 g (4 cups) cauliflower florets
  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1 tbsp corn starch
  • 1 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
  • 4-6 dried red chilies

For the sauce:

  • 1 Knorr ZERO Salt Vegetable Bouillon
  • 1 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 4 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp grated ginger
  • 2 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 tbsp hoisin sauce
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 4-6 cloves garlic - smashed or grated
  • 1 tsp corn starch
  • 4 tbsp cold water
  • Green parts of the spring onion, sesame seeds to garnish.

Instructions:

  1. Whisk the oil, corn starch, and soy sauce together in a mixing bowl. Add cauliflower. Toss well to coat.
  2. Transfer the cauliflower to a lined baking tray – ensuring there is a little room between the florets. Roast in the pre-heated oven for 20 minutes, turning once halfway through, until golden.
  3. Meanwhile, heat up sunflower oil in a wok or a regular pan and fry cut chilies, garlic and ginger. Add the rest of the sauce ingredients to the pan and let it simmer for 1-2 minutes. (If it gets too thick add a little COLD water.)
  4. Add the baked cauliflower and toss well until coated.
  5. Turn off the heat and transfer the cauliflower to a serving dish.
  6. Garnish and serve with steamed rice. Enjoy!

Need to get ahead? Marinade the cauliflower and stir up the sauce in advance, then just combine and warm up!

2. Spaghetti with Lentil Bolognese by Ozgun Ozenen

Spaghetti with Lentil Bolognese

Find a demo video here:
https://www.instagram.com/tv

Swapping meat mince with lentils is a quick and easy way to cook up a protein-packed vegan Bolognese that’s guaranteed to be a crowd-pleaser. This recipe is healthy, delicious and ready in under 35 minutes.

Ingredients (3 portions)

  1. 1 onion
  2. 2 garlic cloves
  3. 1 tablespoon olive oil
  4. 125 g dried red lentils
  5. 1 teaspoon Knorr Vegetable Bouillon Powder
  6. 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  7. 1 teaspoon dried marjoram
  8. 250 g Spaghetti
  9. 2 spring onions
  10. ½ teaspoon salt
  11. 600ml water

Preparation (35 minutes):

  • Peel onion and garlic. Dice the onion and finely chop the garlic.
  • Add the olive oil to a saucepan and fry the onion and garlic on a medium heat.
  • Add lentils and 600 ml of water to the same saucepan and stir in the Knorr Vegetable Bouillon Powder and the herbs.
  • Cover the saucepan and simmer over a low to medium heat for approximately 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Prepare spaghetti as per the package instructions.
  • Wash spring onions and slice. Add the onions and the spaghetti to the lentil Bolognese and quickly warm up. Add salt to taste and serve with a drizzle of olive oil and, optionally, a grating of vegan hard cheese.

3. Scrambled No Eggs by Leonardo Carvalho

Scrambled No Eggs

Scrambled eggs without the eggs?

It’s a tough challenge but the chefs at our food innovation centre Hive have cracked it! The secret? A healthy sprinkling of Kala Namak for taste and some crumbled tofu for texture. Try it and see.

Ingredients: (2 portions)

  • Spring onions - 23g
  • margarine - 10g
  • garlic - 4g
  • turmeric - 0,5g
  • Kala Namak (salt and egg taste) - 2g
  • Black pepper - 0,4g
  • Tofu (1/3 whole and 2/3 cream) - 300g
  • Water from tofu - 50g

Instructions:

  1. Cut spring onions and separate white from green parts.
  2. Blend 200g of tofu with the tofu water to achieve a creamy texture. Leave 100g of tofu solid.
  3. Melt margarine in the pan.
  4. Add garlic and the white parts of the spring onions in the pan. Fry until golden brown.
  5. Add spices: Kala Namak, black pepper and turmeric. Stir and fry for a bit.
  6. Add the creamy tofu. Mix well together.
  7. Crumble the remaining tofu over the Scrambled No Eggs, using your fingers. Stir well.
  8. Add green part of spring onion.
  9. Stir and fry everything until you achieve the desired level of creaminess.

4. Back to the roots by Evert Vermandel

‘Back to the Roots’ - Pot au Feu of root vegetables

Unilever Food Solutions chef Evert puts the veggies firmly back into #veganuary with this warming medley of root vegetables bursting with taste and texture. A recipe to try when you have a little time on your hands and a lot of hungry mouths to feed.

Ingredients:

200 gr Salsifies
250 gr Parsley root
350 gr sweet potato
1 pcs organic root celery (small size)
350 gr various carrots
Knorr Liquid Concentrated Bouillon
or cube Knorr Vegetable Bouillon

1 Onion
1 string of fresh thyme + rosemary
Pumpkinseed oil

Instructions:

  • Clean and peal the salsify, parsley root, carrots, root celery and cut in equal-sized pieces.
  • Simmer the peelings in 1 liter of water together with the sliced onion and the fresh herbs for 30 minutes.
  • When it has reduced to about 500ml, strain it and season with the concentrated liquid vegetable bouillon or a Knorr vegetable bouillon cube.
  • Boil the sweet potatoes whole for 25 minutes and let them cool down in the water.
  • Cook the rest of the vegetables in water with a pinch of salt until they are “al dente”, with a bit of bite. Start with the light-coloured vegetable and end with the darkest ones. Cooking time: celery root and salsify - 3 min, parsley root - 3 min, carrots - 2,5 minutes.
  • Drain and allow them to cool in ice water.
  • Dry the cooked vegetables, place them in an oven tray. Add the sprigs of rosemary, drizzle with a little olive oil and roast for 20 minutes on 180 degrees Celsius.
  • Slice the sweet potato and remove the peel. Dry with kitchen paper.
  • Grill the sweet potato slices until golden.
  • Plate the grilled sweet potato and the roasted vegetables, add the reduced and seasoned stock, garnish with some watercress and drizzle a bit of pumpkinseed oil on top to finish off.

Bon Appetit!