I have been a vegetarian my whole life. My natural tendency is (therefore) to eat meals that balance the protein, carbs, fat, fibre, vitamins & minerals ETC ETC throughout the meal. E.g. aubergine madras with coconut dhal and rice, or Buddha’s Delight inspired dishes with noodles. Dishes that make the most of the harmony between grains & pulses… or just throw a little if everything together. Rather than, say, “meat and two veg”.
This means that my reliance on targeted “vegetarian protein” products such as Quorn, Cauldron and Linda McCartney is actually pretty low, and as a general rule I never feel the lack of meat in my diet.
(Which isn’t to say I think eating meat is a bad idea: I actually think the healthiest diet for a human is mostly veg most the time with small amounts of red and white meat in, say, half your meals, and one portion of oily fish a week. But, for me personally, the idea of chewing some animal’s muscle and fat… nope. No thank you. Do not want.)
EXCEPT chorizo. Yes, chorizo.
I’ll be in a tapas restaurant or wherever, and half the dishes are full of it, or have little cubes of it peppering the ensemble, and it looks & smells amazing, and I just think, “oh dang, I wish I were ok with chowing down on dead pig so I could get in on that”.
And now, I almost can. Really! Ok, I admit it’s not quite the same. But Quorn do a chorizo for veggies and I am so excited to finally be somewhat in on the action! They also do “chorizo style sausages”, and these are what I have actually tried. They’re a bit sweet, a bit smoky, a teeny bit spicy, with a healthy level of paprika flavour. They cook like regular Quorn sausages, pretty much, apart from the fact that they even stain the frying oil red! I definitely want to try the “full chorizo fake” product too, I will be keeping my eyes out for it.
I’ve cooked them up into chunks & stirred through tagine and casserole type dishes for flavour, texture and a great complement to beans in the dish. I’ve loved having something on hand that I can throw into a meal for and instant hit of smoky flavour and protein. This is how carnivores must feel about lardons/cooking bacon, I guess! (And real chorizo, obvs)
A warning: the veggie chorizo (vegrizo? chovego?) is not vegan. Sorry, vegans.