Edible vegan food arrangements | Daily News


Edible vegan food arrangements

‘Life is too short to eat boring food’. Wise words indeed. And not so surprising to learn that they come from a teenager.

But what is surprising is that this teenager is the guy behind a popular Instagram account that depicts healthy vegan food. Peru-based Jose became a vegan at the age of 14, and has been posting pictures of his creations since he started having to cook for himself. Not only is the food he posts tasty on the palate, it’s also tasty on the eye as he aims to present it in an aesthetically pleasing and fun way - think galaxy ice-cream, unicorn smoothies and mermaid bowls.

He’s partial to fruit-and-veggie-topped toasts, breakfast smoothie bowls - a trendy favourite of health food fanatics - and, of course, dessert.

To satisfy his sweet tooth, he bakes cakes, brownies, and doughnuts and freezes up ice cream and popsicles - all made using entirely vegan ingredients.

That means he subs in things like ‘flax eggs’ (which are made with flax seeds and water) for real eggs, straight cacao powder for chocolate made with milk, oils for butter and almond milk and yogurt.

For cheesecakes, he whips up a mix of cashews, frozen banana, agave nectar, and coconut oil, while ice cream is also made with frozen bananas.

He also keeps things healthy by swapping processed cane sugar for coconut sugar, agave nectar, and the natural sugars that occur in fruit.

“I ate animal products for 90 per cent of my life, and meat was my favourite thing in the world,” he said.

“[But] I was struggling with eating disorders and an unhealthy low-weight. I searched for lots of diets online and then the vegan diet popped up. I saw how lots of vegans ate a lot and followed a high-carb diet but still had a perfect fit body, so I started eating less animal products and decided to inform myself about veganism. That is when everything changed and I learned that veganism is a lot more than a diet, it is a lifestyle,” he went on. “Soon after, I made the decision to become vegan. I was no longer looking to lose more weight, but to stop supporting all forms of animal cruelty.”

But making that decision came with some work. His family wasn’t vegan, so Jose needed to start preparing his own food to stick to his plan.

“I started learning to cook as soon as I became vegan,” he said.

“I tried out all kinds of recipes online and was blown away to find out how easy it was to make and how delicious some vegan desserts and snacks can be.”

His favorite recipe ‘by far’ is that vegan cheesecake, which he says is easy to keep healthy and endlessly customizable. He also loves working with any type of berry, since they work so well in smoothies, cakes, and popsicles. Jose’s creations are so inspiring that his mother and sister both decided to transition to veganism, and are in the process of doing so now.

“My mom is very proud and supportive,” he said.

“She says that she loves how passionate I am about it, and my sister loves eating the desserts I make.”

But though it seems like choosing a career as a vegan chef or a professional food stylist would be a natural choice, Jose doesn’t actually know what he wants to do when he grows up.

“I am very unsure about the career I am going to follow,” he said.

“Art is something I have always liked, for sure, but so are math and language. Whatever it is that I choose to do, [I want to] inspire people to be healthier and spread tolerance.”

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