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Vegan Sausages

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When I became a vegetarian, it was at a time in my life (middle school) when my mom still prepared most of my meals. Mom was not really too happy to hear me announce I would no longer be eating her barbecue chicken, roast beef, or smoked ham. “What on earth am I going to cook for you?!” she exclaimed, perplexed.

Surprisingly, my Italian grandmother shared none of this bewilderment, upon hearing of my vegetarianism. “Much of the Italian cuisine is naturally vegetarian anyway,” she informed me. And so, whenever my grandmother comes to visit, I eat like a queen! Pasta e fagioli, Minestrone, Caponata, polenta, ratatouille, pesto, Primavera, gnocci, zeppoli (doughnuts!), etc.

One of the dishes my grandmother likes to prepare for my family is called “Sausage and Peppers”. But when she makes it for me, she simply substitutes beans—or even tempeh—for the sausages. My grandmother doesn’t follow recipes, but here’s the gist of what she does to make this simple but delicious meal:

Italian Tempeh and Peppers

Over medium heat, sauté onion and garlic (I like A LOT of garlic) in a little olive oil, then add some cut-up bell peppers and continue sautéing for a few minutes longer. Add cut-up tempeh, oregano, pepper, and salt, and cook until the peppers are soft. It truly is so simple, but it tastes so good. Add seitan sausages if desired.

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Katie is the baker, photographer, and author of the popular blog Chocolate-Covered Katie. Her favorite food is chocolate, and she believes in eating a balanced diet that includes dessert every single day. More about Katie—> 

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  1. Jennifer says:

    Your grandma is so sweet to cook vegan for you! Yay for Italian, a food culture that has a lot of authentic food that also happens to be vegetarian. I’d like to make this with beans! Yum!

  2. Bianca says:

    Yea for grandma! My mom had the same reaction when I announced I was going veg at age 14. Thankfully, now she’s awesome about it. She made me Bitch-Tastic Brownies from Skinny Bitch in the Kitch this weekend! I just had one of the last ones. Yum!

    I’ll try that Tempeh/Pepper dish. I’m going through a tempeh phase right now. And I’ve been dying to try those sausages…Jess of Get Sconed has been making them alot lately. And they look so good! I printed out the recipe. Guess I should get on it…

  3. Romina says:

    My mom had the same reaction. I became a vegan after my nonna died (my other one died long before I was born), so I don’t know what she would have said, but my mom is a grandmother herself and she kept saying “what on earth can I cook for you!!”

    It’s nice when my family realized that most of what they ate was vegetarian and vegan (if you take out the cheese) anyway. Your dish sounds fantastic!

  4. stonielove says:

    your grandma rocks! and it’s so awesome that you are such a great cook 🙂

  5. Ruby Red Vegan says:

    A party on a Tuesday! Geez, you’re popular!

    I’m glad to hear that you eat like a queen when you’re grandma’s around. My grandma was really supportive too when she heard that I had become a vegan – for the longest time my mom would forget I was a vegetarian and tell me, “I picked up some chicken dinners at the store that I think you’ll like!” Silly mommy. But tell your g-ma that her Italian Tempeh and Peppers dish sounds awesome! I need to pick up some oregano so I can be trying that one soon!

  6. Jenny says:

    What a wonderful grandma! That is so awesome! The tempeh and peppers sounds really good, I think I will try it out!

  7. Leng says:

    Grandma to the rescue! I wish my grandma lived close to me. I’m sure I would enjoy a tremendous amount of food as you do when yours comes to visit.

    That’s true that Italian food is very vegetarian friendly. That’s one of the reasons why Italian food is one of my faves.

  8. Lizzy says:

    How wonderful is your grandma? Aww =D

  9. Theresa says:

    Gradma’s who can cook for vegans must be the greatest things in the world.

  10. Veghead says:

    I have not yet broken the news to my grandmother. I think she’ll have a cow (something about it not being healthy, natural, etc…)

    Anyways. That looks absolutely delicious! ITalian food is always a winner.

  11. Ricki says:

    The dish does look delish (what a great grandma!). Oh, and I’ll add a late echo about your beautiful array of cupcakes!

  12. missblueberry says:

    I love love love love the migrating nature of these sausages! It has really brought us together as bloggers!!! 🙂

  13. asmexyhousewife says:

    Wow, that’s so cool! It is awesome at least one member of your family goes “It’s okay that your doing this and you have my support.” Ironic, I’ve gotten a lot of support from my Pap. He’s normally the one of picks on people the most (that out of love thing) but he’s been pretty gentle on me and loves my baking. 😀

    I have to admit… The meal you talked about did remind of of Jet from Cowboy Bebop’s “Bell Peppers and Beef” (which was at least vegetarian dude to the lack of beef! 😛 )

    Oh, and one little thing… THANK YOU for adding me to your blog roll! The name is 3 seperate words, though. a Smexy Housewife. But thank you, nonetheless!

  14. Cookiemouse says:

    You are quite right. I love Italian food, and I’m sure that one reason is because it’s so vegetarian friendly. My mother always cooked a Sunday roast so it was quite a shock for her when I announced many years ago that I didn’t want to eat any meat. Her reply was, “But you’ll still eat beef?”

  15. Happy Herbivore! says:

    AWW! sweet g-ma!

  16. Billy says:

    Can’t wait to see your five facts from the vegan tag. 🙂

  17. Rural Vegan says:

    Absolutely nothing tops grandma’s cooking, and how wonderful that she supports your veganism! Grandparents rock.

  18. pavotrouge says:

    oh, to have Italian heritage must be awesome!

  19. Vegan_Noodle says:

    Sounds like a delicious dish. I need to make me some vegan sausages sometime soon…

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