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Topic: help! vegetarian allergic to tofu.  (Read 3866 times)
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rhell
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« on: February 07, 2005 03:17:49 PM »

one of my friends is thinking of going vegetarian.  as of now he only eats chicken occasionally.  his biggest problem is that he is HIGHLY ALLERGIC to tofu.  he likes beans fine but a person can only eat so many beans, not to mention the missing of chicken-like-substances.  so i was wondering what alternatives to tofu there are for protein and fake meat?  thanks!

EDIT:  the part in tofu he's highly allergic to is soy protein which means anything such as tofu, miso, tvp,  tempeh, and other fake meats will cause the same reaction
« Last Edit: February 09, 2005 08:14:50 AM by rhell » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2005 03:41:57 PM »

Quorn, http://www.quorn.com has no soy in it! It ROCKS! I prefer the breaded stuff. I used to get it at Mollie Stones and Whole Foods, but now my Safeway carries some of it!
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« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2005 10:02:22 PM »

there are many, many kinds of beans if you buy them dry, so maybe increasing the selection will help.  Also whole grains have alot of protien depending on the grain, the ones i like the best are teff, quinoa, and whole wheat.  you can use them as breakfast cereals with fruits and dairy on top or mixed with all kinds of things for cold salads or hot cassaroles.  if he continues to eat eggs, they are a really building food for healthy people.  Has he tried tempeh?  it is a less processed soybean food, so if it is the soybeans he is allergic to, then probably not a good idea?   Anyway, he may be allergic or having a reaction to the pesticides used on soybeans as they are one of the most heavily sprayed crops, has he tried organic?  Also, not sure how he is showing signs of an allergy, but changing too quickly to a new diet and/or eating too much of a new thing is a good way to screw up your system. 
anyway, i've been a vegetarian my whole life and i hardly ever eat tofu, maybe once every 6 months... 
there are lots of other options and information about how to eat healthily without meat so don't stop trying!
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rhell
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« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2005 12:38:42 PM »

there are many, many kinds of beans if you buy them dry, so maybe increasing the selection will help.  Also whole grains have alot of protien depending on the grain, the ones i like the best are teff, quinoa, and whole wheat.  you can use them as breakfast cereals with fruits and dairy on top or mixed with all kinds of things for cold salads or hot cassaroles.  if he continues to eat eggs, they are a really building food for healthy people.  Has he tried tempeh?  it is a less processed soybean food, so if it is the soybeans he is allergic to, then probably not a good idea?   Anyway, he may be allergic or having a reaction to the pesticides used on soybeans as they are one of the most heavily sprayed crops, has he tried organic?  Also, not sure how he is showing signs of an allergy, but changing too quickly to a new diet and/or eating too much of a new thing is a good way to screw up your system. 
anyway, i've been a vegetarian my whole life and i hardly ever eat tofu, maybe once every 6 months... 
there are lots of other options and information about how to eat healthily without meat so don't stop trying!

he drank about an inch work of soy milk one from a dixie cup and his throat closed up.  any other bite of  anything made out of soy protein has caused similiar reactions so tempeh is out of the question.  he's no stranger to food allergies (he's somewhat allergic to spinach and eggs as well) and has never attempted to go vegetarian at all so it's probably not a dramatic change.  the allergy to heavily sprayed crops is worth looking into (in anycase it can't be healthy so we go organic when we can which is hard when you're poor)
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« Reply #4 on: February 08, 2005 02:56:03 PM »

congrats on your friend thinking about making the big switch! Smiley

Quorn is amazing, if your in the UK there are tonns of places where you can get it from (even farm foods - even though the name sounds.. wrong -_-) mm the carvable chicken was amazing, and guilt free Smiley but! and there is a big but! make sure that your friend tries a small piece first and wait 24 hours for reactions etc. There have been some adverse reactions to those with "mold" allergies Shocked

Make sure your friend has their daily flax too! about 2 tbsp of ground flax a day, normally whizzed up in things like smoothies etc. to keep their omega 3 ratio higher than the omega 6's. Sorry xD recommendning this to all new veggies as most don't actually even find out about it D: - known as linseed i believe here in the UK.

http://www.veganhealth.org/shv/
It has a great source on veg*n diet - vegan info still applies to veggies btw ^^;; thought i should post that for health info etc. Hope this helps at all, sorry if not D:
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« Reply #5 on: February 09, 2005 03:35:21 AM »

I would eat meaty-esque vegetables... eggplant, or portabello mushrooms... Undecided
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« Reply #6 on: February 09, 2005 05:38:25 AM »

seitan ("wheat meat") is good.  it's whole wheat with the starches all rinsed out, leaving just the gluten.  I've always made my own, but it can be bought pre-cooked and as a mix -  note for the fellow budget deficient, it's super cheap to make.

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takewrning
« Reply #7 on: February 09, 2005 06:46:23 AM »

Grains Grains Grains!  Quinoa is a great grain to keep around the house.  It's easy to make, and has a good deal of protein. 
You can make it more watery and sweeten it for a breakfast-type treat, or cook it with less water to make it rice-like.
I love it if you cook it with some miso and tamari and throw in some veggies.  Perfect to take to work.
Amaranth is another good grain, although it takes a tad longer to cook.

Textured Vegetable Protien (TVP) is another must-have.  It doesn't have any flavor, but you add it to stuff.  Like thow it in sauce to make a 'meat' sauce.  Or get chunks and throw it in stirfry. 

Hope this helps!
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« Reply #8 on: February 09, 2005 08:12:59 AM »

Grains Grains Grains!  Quinoa is a great grain to keep around the house.  It's easy to make, and has a good deal of protein. 
You can make it more watery and sweeten it for a breakfast-type treat, or cook it with less water to make it rice-like.
I love it if you cook it with some miso and tamari and throw in some veggies.  Perfect to take to work.
Amaranth is another good grain, although it takes a tad longer to cook.

Textured Vegetable Protien (TVP) is another must-have.  It doesn't have any flavor, but you add it to stuff.  Like thow it in sauce to make a 'meat' sauce.  Or get chunks and throw it in stirfry. 

Hope this helps!

thanks!  quinoa and amaranth are defiantely worth looking into.  miso, tvp, and i think tamari have soy protein in them (which is the part of tofu he's allergic to).

Quorn, http://www.quorn.com has no soy in it! It ROCKS! I prefer the breaded stuff. I used to get it at Mollie Stones and Whole Foods, but now my Safeway carries some of it!

thanks!  there's a whole foods right by us so we'll check it out.

seitan ("wheat meat") is good.  it's whole wheat with the starches all rinsed out, leaving just the gluten.  I've always made my own, but it can be bought pre-cooked and as a mix -  note for the fellow budget deficient, it's super cheap to make.



wow, i always thought seitan used soy protein. 
if you don't mind posting a short tutorial on how to make your own that would be great.
thanks for the info.
« Last Edit: February 09, 2005 08:19:56 AM by rhell » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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« Reply #9 on: February 09, 2005 12:22:15 PM »

I second the eggplant and portobello mushrooms.  It's amazing how meaty they can be.  They might really help when he misses that meat texture.
And I know you mentioned beans, but has he looked into all the different kinds of there?  I love lentils!  Check out making a lentil burger.  There are lots of recipes online.
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« Reply #10 on: February 10, 2005 01:03:04 AM »

there's a long and short version to make seitan, both of which use soy sauce, so just insert your sauce alternative, since it's just for flavoring you could just add more garlic or any other seasoning.  Or, since so many vegetarian recipes call for soy sauce and tamari, you could try this: http://www.japan-101.com/forums/archive/index.php/t-27.html

Long:
12 cups (4lbs) whole wheat flour
3 1/2 quarts water
     Put flour in large bowl and add enough of the water to make a soft dough (about 5 cups or so).  Knead this for 5 minutes, then add enough water to cover your dough and let it rest 15 min.

While it rests, boil together:
1 onion cut up
1 crushed garlic clove
small piece of kombu
1/2 cup of soy sauce*
2 Quarts water

After your 15 min. are up, put the bowl in the sink and knead until the water turns starchy - drain off that water and cover the dough with fresh water and knead again.  You keep doing this until the water is almost clear.  Now you have a raw seitan "roast".  You would stop here if your recipe calls for raw, otherwise make 3 equal pieces and add to the pot to simmer for 1 hour do not boil! it has to cook long and slow to get the meaty texture.

Short:
In a saucepan, bring 4 cups water, 1/4 cup soy sauce*, and a piece of kombu to a boil, meanwhile:

In a large bowl, mix:
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp ginger powder

In a large measuring cup, mix:
1 1/4 cups water or veggie stock
3 TB soy sauce*
1-3 tsp sesame oil

Add the liquid to the dry ingredients, knead 10-15 times and let rest 5 min.  Knead again and let rest 15 min.  Cut into 6-8 pieces and stretch into cutlets or desired shape and simmer in broth for 1 hour do not boil!


Only the long version is really wheat gluten, the short version is more like a meaty pasta since it still has all of the starch.
Hope this helps!

I'd also like to second the bean burgers! 


Edited to add:  Flax is great, but make sure it's milled (ground) because people have trouble digesting the hull and getting the goodness out of the seed.

« Last Edit: February 11, 2005 01:38:52 AM by absintheminded » THIS ROCKS   Logged
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« Reply #11 on: February 14, 2005 10:41:15 PM »

update!
my friend has now been meat free for two weeks (impressive since all i've ever known him to eat is chicken, chicken, and more chicken.
this weekend i whipped up a nutty-mushroom burgers (portabella mushrooms, walnuts, roasted garlic, onion, sunflower seeds, flour, basil and a few other spices) using a local place's vegetarian burger as inspiration.
we also tried seitan super good but waaay to expensive.
quorn also looks way too expensive to afford on a comic book store salary.

this weekend we're going to make seitan the long and short way so thanks so much for the recipe absintheminded.
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« Reply #12 on: February 19, 2005 12:39:39 AM »

Good for your friend -- m ost people would use the allergy as an excuse to never go veg.
Just so he knows --- TVP is not  made from soy products, it is from vegetable proteins (at least the stuff I have seen)
He should also make sure that his allergy isn't to something like magnesium which is used to process tofu.
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« Reply #13 on: February 22, 2005 09:06:49 PM »

Good for your friend -- m ost people would use the allergy as an excuse to never go veg.
Just so he knows --- TVP is not  made from soy products, it is from vegetable proteins (at least the stuff I have seen)
He should also make sure that his allergy isn't to something like magnesium which is used to process tofu.

thanks!  my friend has had allergic reactions to different soy products so it's probably not magnesium.
i've never seen any without soy protein as one of the third or so ingredients do you have any suggestions for brands?

also thanks to everyone for the info on the seitan.  it's super easy to make and the left over broth makes a great stew.
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« Reply #14 on: February 23, 2005 12:25:13 AM »

Yay for you guys!

I'm glad the seitan worked out for you, too! 
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« Reply #15 on: February 23, 2005 03:29:41 AM »

its hard enough to go veg/vegan..but to be allergic to tofu and such...eek...id look on the internet for recipes and ideas for food to buy...and as far as satan i mean seitan being expensive, thats somewhat part of being vegan for me...i mean some of it is actually either the same price or a little less...also try the ethnic markets around you...we get alot of stuff at the asian one...good luck
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