#LunchBreakLIVE with VegansOfLA Creator and Community Events Coordinator for Vegan Outreach for the Greater Los Angeles area, Gwenna Hunter, who will be making pasta mushroom marinara, utilizing several products from Brandless brand, a nationwide product delivery service, along with Parma vegan cheese, Garden vegan meats and Follow Your Heart dressing. Gwenna introduces Vegan Outreach’s amazing program for new vegan and the veg curious called “10 Weeks to Vegan,” a guided challenge that gives everything you need to know to get started with eating vegan.
Gwenna is a definitely a mover and shaker in the vegan community. The 10 Weeks to Vegan Challenge her group created provides all the information necessary to help people transition to veganism in the fashion that is most comfortable for them. Gwenna explains that nine times out of ten people have plenty of plant-based items already in their homes. She believes in a kind compassionate approach to help people open their minds and their hearts to a vegan lifestyle. She points out that it takes all kinds of outreach in the movement but kindness is her preferred approach. Gwenna is actually one of the first vegans that Paige met in Los Angeles. Paige says that her warmth made her want to get more involved in the vegan community.
Gwenna’s recipe is super simple. She cooks the pasta that she bought from Brandless.com. Brandless is an amazing website to stock your pantry with vegan items and all the items are only $3 or less! Gwenna sautés the mushrooms and the rest of the vegetable ingredients. Then she heats up the marinara sauce. Gwenna adds optional Beyond Meat pea protein beef crumbles, which is especially helpful to those who like the texture of meat. This recipe is just as good without the crumbles if you prefer not to eat any processed foods.
Gwenna started her journey to veganism about nine years ago. When Gwenna started VegansOfLA she was not vegan. She was an ovo-lacto vegetarian and wanted to meet other vegetarians in Los Angeles. What gave her the push to a vegan lifestyle was a dream of a cow which made her realize her connection to other animals. Her final push happened after she watched the movie “Dairy is Scary” by Erin Janus and she realized that she could no longer consume dairy products. Animals are sacred to Gwenna. She believes that all animals, human and non-human, are healers. She says that there are many ways to reach out to someone to help them understand the implications of lifestyle choices. People can argue on and on for or against veganism, but they can’t argue with love. These animals love just like humans do and they do not want to be eaten. If you aren’t already vegan please try to take the 10 week vegan challenge to start your compassionate journey today!
Photos courtesy of Paige Parsons Roache.
Report edited by Ellen Dent.
Gwenna’s Marvelous Mushroom Marinara Recipe!
1 jar 24 ounce jar or homemade pasta sauce.
1-2 large chopped mushrooms
1 package of pasta noodles any shape
5 table spoons of fresh chopped garlic
1 chopped red bell pepper
2 handfuls of chopped fresh spinach
Optional salt and pepper seasoning to taste
Optional Beyond Meat Crumbles
Optional Gardein Crispy Tenders package
Begin boiling the noodles according to package instructions.
Add optional Crispy Tenders to oven and bake according to package instructions. 18-20 minutes.
In a small pot or skillet add enough broth to begin sautéing the chopped mushrooms and bell peppers. Sauté for approximately 5-7 minutes.
Begin sautéing the optional Beyond Meat Crumbles in oil or vegetable broth according to package instructions. Add optional seasoning.
Once noodles are cooked and rinsed add your 24 oz. pasta sauce and turn on heat to medium low.
Add your mushrooms and bell peppers.
Once done add the optional Beyond Meat Crumbles and stir.
Now you can add the spinach and basil and let sit for 3-5 minutes.
Plate and add the Crispy Tenders and voila you have an amazing vegan meal that you can be proud of.