A couple weeks ago Lightlife contacted me and asked if I would like to try some samples of their products. Since I buy their tempeh all the time and I love it I thought it would be fun to try their other products. I don’t usually buy meat, I like to make seitan sausages at home (the process is somewhat similar to this) and a few times a year I will have a vegan chicken nugget but after trying the lightlife products I think I might have to change my tune. It is all so easy which means I can spend less time in the kitchen and more time thinking about all the things I want to do.
The first item I tried was the fakin’ bacon smoky tempeh strips on the side of some pancakes. They were perfect, not overly smoky and without the bitter taste that tempeh can have if you don’t cook it up right. I will get these again for sure since it is very similar to making your own tempeh bacon but no long marinating time. I can’t marinate things in the morning because I usually wake up ravenous and it is important for me to sleep for as long as possible. I really like that they don’t taste or look like bacon made from pigs but are instead just a happy vegan substitution.
Next we tried the chick’n style strips in a roasted pepper cashew cheese quesadillas. This is a product I never would have bought but we both really liked it. The strips are the perfect taste and texture, I don’t know why people even bother with eating birds when the vegan alternative works so well. These would be perfect to toss into stir frys or pad thai or really anything.
Next I made empanadas with the smart ground which are just veggie protein crumbles. By the way, everything I tried was really high in protein if you are someone who is constantly exercising (not me) then you might want to check out some of these. The crumbles cooked up super fast and texture was spot on but they wasn’t a lot of flavor. This, for me, is nice because I can flavor things how I want. But they have a range of flavors too, like Italian, TexMex etc. I think it would be pretty easy to trick someone with this stuff, if only there were people I knew that didn’t know I was vegan but, if you can imagine, most people who know me know that part too so I am probably not going to be foolin anyone.
I still had smart ground left so I cooked it up with some poblanos and some rotel and made it the base for my nachos supreme along with some refried beans, tofutti cream cheese, food for lover’s queso, tomatoes and green onions. They were pretty much the best vegan nachos ever.
So I am pretty sold on Lightlife, the only thing I don’t like is that not all of their products are organic which I do prefer, especially when it comes to soy products. The tempeh is organic so I will keep buying a ton of that. Hopefully they are working on it and in the future more of their line will follow in that direction because I really like their stuff and it is available everywhere.
So I hope by now you are excited about some vegan meat and all the things you can do with it because Lightlife is offering a fantastic giveway to one of you! It includes a bamboo chopping board, a bamboo serving set, several spices, Lightlife recipe cards, and Lightlife free coupons.
All you have to do is leave a comment making up a name for a fake meat product that doesn’t exist yet. You can’t use fakin’ because the geniuses at Lightlife already came up with that one. Whichever I like the best will win the prize. You have to have a US address to win.
And don’t feel bad if you don’t win, they have coupons on their website and sometimes do giveaways on facebook and twitter so follow them if you want to win some free stuff.
Edit 5/3/2011 Contest is closed
Please read the comments because many of the ideas are fantastic! I really liked to-fuggets the nuggets based on chick-fil-a and Phillet of Phish but in the end Kate with Sham Ham has been declared the winner! Thanks for playing y’all!