Whenever I cook Quorn for friends at home, the key question I get asked time and time again is "What IS it?" And it's a pretty tough one to answer. On the surface, it's a high protein, low fat meat substitute, but for a deeper explanation, I'll need to get my lab coat on. Firstly, it's not derived from mushroom which is a common misconception. The link amongst all of Quorn's products is something called Mycoprotein, which is made from the type of fermenters which you'd find in a brewery. It's created by adding oxygen, nitrogen, glucose and minerals to a funguas called Fusarium venenatum, and once harvested is added to the protein found in egg whites to help with the binding. (You can find out more about the process by clicking here.)
The two types of Quorn which I use the most are their pieces and fillets. I am such a lazy cook by nature (unless it's cake related - then I'll bake all day!), so I love that they are quick and easy to cook in a multitude of ways. The pieces are perfect covered with pesto and tossed through some pasta, whilst the fillets are great marinaded in piri piri sauce and served in salad filled pitta bread with mayo and halloumi cheese.
In addition to their range which encompasses everything from meatballs to ready meals, they have also recently introduced vegan and gluten free options to their menu. The Quorn Facts website also serves to provide current production information and also details on their environmental work.
Quorn doesn't have to be saved purely for the vegetarians of the world. My carnivorous boyfriend has been known to knock up a mean spaghetti bolognese using Quorn mince, with the low fat, high protein properties building into his workout routine. But as a vegetarian, I love the choice they afford me to have - whether I want a burger or fajita, stir-fry or bacon sandwich, it's there for me to choose from.
Whether you're a vegetarian or not, what are your favourite meat free recipes? Let me know in the comments!