Hi, I’m Anjali, the owner and author of Vegetarian Gastronomy, a Vegan food blog celebrating Healthy Living, Food, and Family.
Through this website, I’m excited to share my passion for cooking and creating new recipes (find out more about my diet and recipes below), my culinary experiences, and my love of food. I’m a full-time mom of two beautiful kids and wife to an amazing husband. My goal is to help you cook, create, and try different dishes and flavors in your own home. I hope you find this website helpful, inspiring, and most of all, delicious.
My “Why” & Inspiration…
If you asked me today what my dream job would look like, I’d tell you that it would be to own a little café or local eatery, where I could simply cook, develop recipes, and be happy watching others enjoy my creations. I would have never imagined 10 years ago, that this would be one of my passions in life.
This passion led me to create Vegetarian Gastronomy, a place for me to share my creations and recipes. After 8 amazing years of working as a Bioengineer, I quit my job to be a full-time Mom (one of the best decisions of my life). What once started casually back in 2009 as a hobby, is now an incredible space for me to share my passion for cooking and creating new recipes, my culinary experiences, and my love of food.
Not everyone needs to enjoy or love cooking. In fact, most of the time we’re all trying to throw together something easy, healthy-ish, tasty, and everyone in your household will eat, as quick as we can, with minimal clean-up.
But I do think it’s a necessary life skill to be able to cook a meal for yourself or others when needed, even something super simple. Eating out can be expensive, unhealthy, and/or repetitive. From being on your own for the first time, to having a family, or entertaining friends…being able to throw together a meal doesn’t have to be difficult.
Sometimes it’s just a matter of finding those few recipes or ingredients that you love and enjoy, and learning how to use them that makes cooking a meal manageable, delicious, and perhaps even fun.
Also, in the process of raising my two young kids, I realized that healthy eating habits start forming at a really young age. It’s important to expose kids at a young age to a variety of different flavors, ingredients, and plant-based foods in order to show them that healthy and clean eating doesn’t equate to taste-less, boring, and bland.
I love using whole food plant-based ingredients to come up with comforting, delicious, healthy dishes! Sharing food is my love language. And if I can help you in any way get to a better relationship with food, cooking, making meals, and/or eating more plant-based, then that’s my ‘why’. I’m excited to be able to share this passion through this site.
A Little About Me…
We are typical spoiled Southern Californians. Born and raised, with permanent sandal tans, living the beach life in San Diego. The only time you’ll see us bear the cold is for some great skiing.
I could live off nachos, mac n cheese, my buffalo cauliflower, dark chocolate, and my husband’s homemade buttery black pepper popcorn. But I also love indulging in a huge salad filled with sautéed veggies, some type of protein, avocado, and a delicious sauce drizzled on top.
I enjoy working out, being active, traveling, and spending time outdoors in nature. I’m so incredibly thankful for our health and the ability to move. It’s something we tend to take for granted and I try to remind myself of that every day.
I went vegan back in 2015 for ethical and environmental reasons, and the rest of my family followed shortly after (more about this below). I love entertaining, cooking, and baking for friends and family…it’s always fun surprising people with delicious vegan food!
There are always ups and downs in this life we’ve created, but I always attempt to end my days feeling positive and live life with perspective in mind. Because ultimately, i’ve learned through experience, that we only have today and don’t know what tomorrow will bring.
In The Kitchen…
I’m a self-taught home chef. Watched my mom cook growing up, but never quite cared to help unless asked or learn until I went to college and had to cook for myself.
After the following…
- lots of phone calls
- messed up dishes that went straight in the trash
- the desire to feed my kids a healthy well-balanced diet
- going vegan somewhere along the way
…I was left with a huge appreciation for the art of cooking and being able to easily re-create your favorites at home, using whole foods, and knowing exactly what goes into each dish.
Being able to come up with dinner during a weekday based on what I have in my fridge and pantry is my hidden secret, and is what inspires most of my creations on my site.
What You’ll Find on Vegetarian Gastronomy…
You’ll find that my recipes are all plant-based (despite the site name ‘Vegetarian Gastronomy’…at some point, I may change the name, but for now it’s here to stay). And although I do not personally follow a 100% gluten-free diet, I have some close family that is gluten-free and I’m always inspired to develop recipes that are naturally gluten-free, or can be made GF (more on this below).
Although we are a vegan family that believes in the power of plants, and most of my recipes are ‘vegan & gluten-free’, this is a space for EVERYONE and all types of eaters. Because simply put, when it comes to food, there should be a good balance of variety and it should taste good! This site is here to show you just that and to help you create wholesome easy, healthy, and delicious meals for the entire family.
In a nutshell, here’s what you’ll find on my site:
- Delicious vegan recipes
- Recipes that are GF naturally, or can easily be made GF
- Quick healthier dessert ideas
- Recipes inspired by a variety of different cuisines
- Veganized versions of some of my favorites
- Various resources such as favorite vegan products, vegan restaurant recs, pantry-staples, my favorite kitchen products, etc. (more coming to the blog)
I develop the recipes, take photographs, write content, and manage the technical backend of the site.
Whether you are looking for a dish inspired by a particular cuisine, or…
- a simple meal (Grilled Veggie Quesadilla w/Black Beans),
- appetizers for a party (Buffalo Cauliflower Bites),
- something that you thought would be difficult but, in fact, is easy (Cauliflower Tikka Masala),
- new fun and healthy breakfast ideas (Chocolate Strawberry Overnight Oats),
- a healthy, yet delicious dessert (Chocolate Fudge Popsicles),
- comfort food (Tortilla Soup)
- something gluten-free (No-Bake Chocolate PB Cookie Dough Bites),
- a quick fix for that mid-afternoon craving (Tropical Pineapple Kale Smoothie),
- a great freezable meal (Creamy Carrot Tomato Pasta),
- a veganized favorite (Vegan Cucumber Ranch),
- or a meal your whole family will enjoy, including your toddler (Green Panini),
I hope you are inspired to try at least ONE recipe and enjoy it as much as I have!
Now you know a little about me and what my website has to offer. Whether you are looking for new recipes, information on my favorite kitchen appliances and cookware, ideas on school lunches, or simply browsing through the mouth-watering pictures, I hope you have fun perusing through the site!
To get emails of all the weekly recipes and posts I make, SUBSCRIBE HERE:
I also love hearing from all of you! Any feedback on this website is always welcome, or feel free to contact me, but I do ask that you PLEASE try to be respectful and keep this place positive.
My Diet, Veganism, & Why Gluten-Free?
Whether you have an allergy, are gluten-free, vegan, or have any other dietary restrictions, simply put, Food should taste Good. This site is here to show you just that and to help you easily create wholesome healthy and tasty meals for the entire family in your own kitchen.
My Diet & Health. Although I do try to be healthy on a daily basis, I love all types of food and tend not to restrict myself. You will notice that over the past two years, I have moved towards a 100% vegan diet, try to avoid processed ingredients, and use natural sweeteners when possible, although I do believe that everything is okay in moderation.
My Vegan Diet. All of the recipes on this website are vegan. I grew up vegetarian all my life, and in January 2015 I became VEGAN for ethical and environmental reasons. It has been one of the BEST decisions of my life and surprisingly, a very easy transition. Although not expected, my family surprisingly followed and went vegan shortly after.
If you are looking for more information on veganism or looking for some inspiration, please do not hesitate to contact me. If you’re looking for more information, visit My Journey Towards a 100% Vegan Diet Page where you’ll find some frequently-asked-questions and a few sites which have helped me along the way.
Why Gluten-Free? My brother was diagnosed with Celiac Disease back in 1999, and has since led a gluten-free (GF) diet. At the time of his diagnosis, there was very little awareness and information about gluten intolerance and leading a gluten-free diet, let alone gluten-free cooking and recipes, especially where we lived. Not only did we constantly get restaurants stating dishes were gluten-free when they clearly contained wheat, but we also had to call food brands on our own to find out if their product was entirely GF. There were hardly any gluten-free products available at the time, and those that were available generally did not taste that great.
Now, fast forward to 20 years later, we have a food industry well-educated in gluten-free foods. There have been amazing strides taken by restaurants, grocery stores, big-name food brands, etc. to become gluten-aware and carry gluten-free products.
Helping my brother follow a gluten-free diet and better understanding the effects of gluten on the body has inspired me to be more conscious of gluten consumption in my daily cooking, at restaurants, or when shopping at grocery stores. For people like my brother, it’s a wonderful new world these past few years and he’s now able to enjoy many dishes he had missed for so long. Although I do not personally follow a 100% gluten-free diet, my family and I are very gluten aware in our daily cooking and everyday lives.
Because of this, I’m always inspired to develop recipes that are naturally gluten-free. So whether you have Celiac Disease, a gluten intolerance, or just want to cut/reduce gluten from your diet for health reasons, the majority of my recipes on my site are, or can be made, Gluten-Free.
But Wait, There’s More…
Here’s a fun list of 50 Random Things About Me and some Frequently Asked Questions.