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Vegetarians who don't eat eggs/cheese - confused - vegan buffet ideas please

(25 Posts)
lilolilmanchester Thu 18-Oct-12 22:19:52

Am planning a big buffet. Very happy to accommodate all dietary requirements as far as possible, but need some help understanding it all: several people have said they are vegetarian. So far so good, had decided on various meat alternatives - a variety of dishes containing either eggs, cheese or mayonnaise. Plus a shed load of vegetable based side salads which everyone can eat. Now two vegetarians have told me they don't eat eggs or cheese (if not veg. cheese) or mayo as "that's not vegetarian". I appreciate that it might be my ignorance, but I thought you were vegetarian if you didn't eat "animals" (i.e. the meat from animals) and vegan if you didn't eat animal produce such as eggs & milk. So not sure why they didn't say they were vegan rather than vegetarian in the first place. Or maybe I've got it all wrong, so firstly would appreciate being educated on that point. And then....

If I can't serve egg/cheese/mayo based main courses as planned, what could I serve as a (cold) main course ? There are loads of vegetable based side dishes, but don't want the non-cheese/egg/mayo eating vegetarians to feel they are being palmed off with the side salads. No heating facilities, everything has to be made ahead and transported.

Any ideas very much appreciated. Thanks.

poppy283 Thu 18-Oct-12 22:24:37

Vegans also don't eat honey, wear wool etc, as far as I know.

Tofu, quinoa, nuts, beans and pulses are vegan. How about a nut roast, bean burgers, marinated tofu skewers.

poppy283 Thu 18-Oct-12 22:25:51

And also most hard Italian cheeses use calf rennet and are not vegetarian.

ImaginateMum Thu 18-Oct-12 22:26:13

If you read puff pastry labels careful you can find vegan ones easily. Then make some nice tarts with caramelised onion and black olives - yum yum!

earlyriser Thu 18-Oct-12 22:26:29

Falafels, onion bhajis, samosas, can all be vegan.

Arion Thu 18-Oct-12 22:29:43

Unless you get vegetarian cheese, it is set with rennet which is made from animal stomach lining, definately "animals". Also eggs are unborn chickens, how can they be anything other than "animals".

joanofarchitrave Thu 18-Oct-12 22:34:28

Chana dahl is a lovely chickpea curry that IME has never been known not to please. It is much better made at least one day before needed and is nice hot or cold. Lovely with rice but baked potatoes sometimes easier for transporting. There are a million recipes, here's mine:

To feed 2 - 4 people, you need 2 onions, veg oil (not olive), large bunch fresh coriander (2 bunches if supermarket size), ground coriander, ground cumin, 2 tins chickpeas in water, 1.5 tins of chopped or peeled tomatoes.
Strip fresh coriander leaves from the stalks, discard the stalks. Chop, leaving a few intact leaves for the end. Slice onions, heat a generous slosh of oil and cook onions over low heat until transparent. Add a tablespoon or so of ground coriander, same of cumin and stir to mix well. Cook for half a minute. Add the chopped coriander and mix well again. Cook/stir until it looks well combined - a greenish brown sludge. Add the tomatoes, stir well and cover; bring to the boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Drain the chickpeas and add, stir and cover again; cook for a further 30 minutes at least.

defineme Thu 18-Oct-12 22:35:34

houmous, stuffed vine leaves, tarts, falafels-mezze type stuff

or could you take those food warmer things and wrap pans up in blankets to transport-I just think curry is the easiest vegan option-lovely nut or lentil curry.

I think a load of salads should do though-hefty ones like pasta with pine nuts and vegan pesto.

ceeveebee Thu 18-Oct-12 22:38:01

Can you buy some vegetarian cheese (health food shops sell it) and then just make whatever cheese dish you were planning on?

defineme Thu 18-Oct-12 22:38:08

Are eggs unborn chickens if they're unfertilized-aren't they just eggs. My eggs aren't unborn babies and I lose those once a month?

colditz Thu 18-Oct-12 22:39:41

Arizona, eggs are not unborn chickens, they more closely resemble an adult mammals period than a baby chicken. Only fertilised eggs are unborn chickens.

yousankmybattleship Thu 18-Oct-12 22:41:04

Falafels/stuffed vine leaves are lovely, but if people are restricting their diet so much surely they shouldn't expect much choice. Maybe just make sure there is at least one veggie cheese, plenty of breads and some chutney. Job done!

Allalonenow Thu 18-Oct-12 22:45:40

Onion and tomato tarts or slices of rice stuffed aubergine or red pepper tarts or halved courgettes stuffed with cous cous or halves of peppers stuffed with quinoa salad, or a large platter of giant cou cous with aubergine olives and peppers chopped into it, or endive leave "boats" filled with bean and chick pea salad.

lilolilmanchester Thu 18-Oct-12 22:56:05

wow, so many responses - thank you. I was going to get falafel from Costco, but luckily got to taste them a few weeks ago... they were lovely warm but like sawdust cold and I have no access to heating facilities, and won't be able to keep them warm.

Anyone had any falafel that are good cold?

sashh Fri 19-Oct-12 06:00:43

Also eggs are unborn chickens, how can they be anything other than "animals".

Only if they are fertilized, most are not.


1) Dim Sum

Make dumplings with veggi suet, form into small balls (about 1/2" diameter). Some with just spices, some with a filling.

finely chopped spring onion / mushroom / courgette.

Steam (put greasproof paper under) and serve hot or cold

Filo parcels

Cut filo pastry sheets in 4 and layer them with the corners of one sheet on the edge of the other so you get a star shape.

Fillings can be made from

mango chutney
chopped and cooked mushrooms
yofu (get from the health shop) it's vegan yoghurt but goes solid when cooked so you can use it as you would cream cheese.
chopped and cooked onions
spring onions

just mix and match, try leek with mango chutney or yofu and mushroom.

lolalotta Fri 19-Oct-12 06:45:26

Cathedral city is a vegetarian cheese! grin

lolalotta Fri 19-Oct-12 06:49:22

Could you make a quiche for the veggie egg eaters? I know it's boring, but yummy stumped by the non-egg eaters...

poppy283 Fri 19-Oct-12 06:58:29

Most cheese is veggie, you don't need to go anywhere special, just check the label and avoid parmesan, parmigiano reggiano etc. Holland and Barratt have lots of vegan alternatives.

poppy283 Fri 19-Oct-12 07:01:25

... but it seems you don't need vegan alternatives, just to avoid eggs and meat-cheese grin

lilolilmanchester Fri 19-Oct-12 10:51:32

thank you for all the info and suggstions, I guess I should just stop fretting. I thought I was ok with frittata, cheese rolls, "coronation quorn", until a couple of people said that they are vegetarians and don't eat cheese, eggs or mayo. Hence my confusion as I thought that would make them vegan rather than vegetarian. I just didn't want anyone to feel they'd been palmed off with the side salads, am happy to cater for everyone if I know how! I am also doing a roast butternut squash and chickpea salad, plus a bean salad, as well as the more "salady salads",perhaps they are robust enough and I should just stop overthinking it. But lots of good ideas above, might have a rethink.

sashh Sat 20-Oct-12 11:09:43

I thought that would make them vegan rather than vegetarian

There are all sorts of vegetarians, some eat fish but still call themselves veggi. I know someone who claims to be vegan and eats honey and drinks beer.

The roast sounds good. IME veggi / vegan's are often happy that there is something, anything they can eat.

div22c Tue 23-Oct-12 16:41:28

The definition of vegetarian/ vegan is unfortunately not cast in stone - different people interpret/ adopt it differently, so I sympathise with your dilemma. To add to the other suggestions - cooked and dressed potatoes, bruschetta, sandwiches (eg philly and cucumber - veggi but not vegan/ cucumber, lettuce and tomato), rice boiled with corn kernels and peas with salt and herbs, soup (but may be difficult to transport and keep warm)

multipoodles Wed 24-Oct-12 08:55:26

If you are concerned about vegans the easiest dish to add is some humous (or a variety) with chopped veg, carrots, cucumber, peppers, baby corn, sugar snap peas, cauliflower, just stick the pot of humous in the middle of a serving plate and shove some raw veggies areound it! I would be delighted with this simple addition to your buffet, it means I can fill up on what I know for sure is vegan while I do discreet investigations into what ingredients are in other dishes.

I choose to live my life as a vegan, I don't expect every restaurant, hotel, friends or family to pander to me but a small offering such as as humous and veg at a family buffet will keep me more than happy smile

lilolilmanchester Wed 24-Oct-12 09:26:24

thank you all for your responses and suggestions. Multipoodles, I don't see it as pandering, more wanting ALL my guests to feel welcome and catered for. I was going to do a vegetable & dip platter anyway, was going to do tsatsiki but humous is a good idea.

Thanks again.

sammyscookies Fri 19-Apr-13 16:02:38

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