Thursday, October 10, 2013

Vegan Cooking Class at Herbal Academy of New England

A few weeks ago, I attended a class at the Herbal Academy of New England's new facility in Bedford, Mass. The class, which was the first in a series, was called "Veganizing Your Life: The Basics of Vegan Cooking." A lot of my catering clients are interested in vegan food - if they're not already vegan - and so I thought this class would give me some vegan cooking inspiration.

Vegan Cooking Class | The Economical Eater

The class was taught by Lisa Kelly, a personal chef and blogger at The Vegan Pact. The class started with an informal discussion about veganism, where Lisa explained the benefits of a vegan diet and then learned from the group why we were there and how much we knew about veganism. It was a great way to get to know our teacher for the evening, but also our fellow classmates (there were about 8 people attending the class).

After about 30 minutes or so of the informative session, we went into the room next door to get cooking.

Lisa shared several vegan-friendly recipes with us. She did the cooking (and explaining of each dish), while everyone in the class helped prep ingredients.

On the menu: Maple Pecan Brussels Sprouts & Butternut Squash with Millet; Massaged Kale Avocado Salad; Cranberry Walnut Quinoa Salad; and Raw Strawberry Cheesecake. Apparently, I didn't take a single photo of the final products, but they were all really delicious, and surprisingly satiating. I don't think I could ever go vegan, but I could easily eat all of these dishes on a regular basis. Especially that cheesecake - borderline mind-blowing. Thankfully,  we all went home with each recipe, and I definitely plan on making the millet dish again soon - it's perfect for this time of year!

Overall, this was a really fun and interactive class, and I loved the combination of information mixed with cooking. I also appreciated how Lisa didn't preach a vegan diet too much - she understood everyone was there for different reasons, and not everyone in attendance wanted to go vegan. We were all just there to learn.

Interested in attending a class at the Herbal Academy of New England yourself? The kind folks over there are offering EE readers 20% off any fall class! Just use code WELCOME20 at checkout to get the discount. Some upcoming classes include: Plant-Powered Protein, Vegan on the Cheap, Juicing Benefits, and a Yule Log Workshop.

Would you ever go vegan, even if it was just temporarily? Why or why not?

This class was complimentary, but as always, all opinions are my own. 

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