A party invite just came in from my closet friend, Ann. She isn’t plant-strong, and she is having a gathering at her home next week. My friends are always so re-assuring, “Don’t worry, I will have plenty here for you to eat.” While I always applaud their diligence, no matter how hard they seem to try, if they are not truly plant-strong®, they generally miss the mark and add oil or salt to foods that are generically plant-perfect. I have learned over the years that it is best to BYOW (bring your own whatever) to remain plant strong at any social gathering. In the beginning, it was difficult, but with time, I think I have streamlined my way to feel relaxed and plant-confident at any social get-together.
I have the secret weapon. Simple. Easy. Quick. Delicious. And plant-strong®. Did I mention versatile?
Yup, it is garbanzo bean flour. A few years ago, I started using stone ground garbanzo bean flour. I was using it to thicken soups, but one day realized that this stuff was like magic in a bag! Makes the perfect garnish. You can make veggie burgers with it. You can make hummus. You can make chocolate pudding. The only thing I haven’t done with it is use it as a facial (although, I have entertained such a thought).
But for the “WOW” factor at parties( and so that I do not pass out)…I make “mini” veggie burgers. You can use Rip’s recipe from page 186 (Engine 2 Diet). Instead of a can of black beans, use a cup of garbanzo bean flour, re-constitute with water or salt-free vegetable broth. Add the liquid until you end up with a “paste.” I cook with my eyes, so you will have to judge for yourself. Follow the other directions in the E2 recipe. Once you reach the consistency as described by Chef Rip, use a melon baller, and make small burgers/patties. You should get about 32-40 mini-burgers. Bake them 8-10 minutes at 400 degrees. Once done, allow them to cool, then arrange them attractively on a platter. Garnish with chopped scallions and grated carrots. I usually make a “bean dip” with the garbanzo flour, so that people can then dip the mini-burgers. Everyone goes WILD for this.
But, in the meantime, I have to think about the never ending question…What will I wear to Ann’s party? I often dress up my with my “Kale” t-shirt…looks snazzy with pearls. People will ask you questions about the shirt, then, you can tell them how Engine 2 has changed your diet. This happens to me all the time.
In the meantime, never allow yourself to feel intimidated when heading to a party. You have a full arsenal of recipes, support and ideas right here at Engine 2. For added support, you can check us out at Engine 2 Extra.
When I am at a party, I go prepared. What others choose to eat is their choice. My motto at parties is always this…
Be plant-strong to thine ownself. And, have fun!
Char’s Quick Tips for Party Success
- Ask the hosts what they’ll be serving, and better yet, ask them what you can bring.
- Sometimes, I eat a hearty salad before heading out to a social gathering.
- When you get to the party, identify those foods that are plant-strong® and enjoy yourself.
- Take you favorite dish…you will not go hungry.
Next time, have the party at your house!