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Vegetarian Cheese

These cheeses are made without the use of calf rennet or any animal based rennet, they are made with microbial rennet.

All pilgrim's choice cheddar cheeses ( Available in Alpha supermarkets )

La Vache qui ri ( available every where )

Domty Mozzorella  ( very easy to get )

Président Emmental ( metro, alpha, and many other supermarkets )

Most if not all blue cheese and  camembert.

So if you are concerend about cruelty and loss of life of animals try to choose one of the above cheeses.

If you know of any other vegetarian cheeses in Egypt please put them in the discussion and I will add them later.


Vegetarian is healthier

There is no question that being a vegetarian is healthier. Vegetarians

  • Face about 30 percent lower risk of death from heart disease than do those who eat meat, fish or poultry.
  • Some studies show cancer deaths are at least 40 percent lower among vegetarians.
  • Vegetarians have a lesserer chance of suffering from kidney and gall stones, diet-related diabetes and high blood pressure.
  • Lower cholersterol.

Check out these web pages for more info




Kill the cow to make the cheese!

If the reason you are a vegetarian is that you would rather not kill animals just to enjoy their taste ( or use them as leather in your shoes ) then you might be in for a big surprise. Cheese although is made up of mainly milk is partially a by product of killing animals. Flashback, just like yogurt cheese needs a little something to make milk magically turn itself into cheese. With yogurt all you need is yogurt, kind of like a circle of life in itself, but the true abracadabra in yogurt is the bacteria in it. To make cheese you have two methods, in one, you can use bacteria ( bacteriacidical culture to be more precise ) , albeit a different one than cheese. But the other more common alternative is to use rennet. Rennet is an extract from the digestive systems of animals ( extracted after killing them of coarse ) that contains enzymes that change milk into cheese. Out of all the cheese products that are available in the Egyptian market only a hand full are made by bacteria, and most use calf rennet ( abroad many cheeses can be based on pig rennet, but that is not halal to Muslims ). So if you are strict and do not eat or use products that need animals to be killed to produce them then you can totally forget all that Roumy cheese, most brands of mozzarella except one and most cheddar cheeses. If you like blue cheese and Camembert then you will not miss a lot since both rely nearly fully on bacteria. Next time you go to the supermarket spend more time looking at the labels in the cheese display, it is very educational since the fat content of some cheeses will make you stop eating cheese, vegetarian or not. Everything with the word rennet is bad, bacteria or salt or mineral starters are good.

Some vegetarian meat replacements at last.

I was not always a vegetarian. In my teenage years burgers where my favorite and often daily food. Ever since I wised up and stopped eating the flesh of animals I have had that hunger, a hunger that would not be satisfied except by a juicy burger. I tried to create burger replacements, most of these experiments in substitutive cooking have ended up in the garbage bin. The result is years of hunger dreaming about the perfect burger, one that is tasty and juicy but that you do not have to take an animal’s soul out of its body to eat it. You can imagine how happy I am when I found Vegetarian Burger in the supermarket. AHEF has prepared a full range of vegetarian meat replacement products, both frozen and canned.

AHEF Vegetarian Burger

This comes as both cans and frozen box. The frozen boxes are larger and are the ones that satisfy my sinful craving for burgers. To get the best feeling that this is a burger you should put a lot of oil on the grill. Turn it often that makes it cook better. In the end you will be surprised with the result. With a bit of mayonnaise and ketchup or even better barbeque sauce in a pair of buns you will really enjoy this vegetarian treat. Eat as often as you want or need it is a good source of protein. What is funny is that the cans in the picture shown is labled a burger but is infact a minced meat in sauce that is suitable for cooking and on pasta. Go figure. This minced meat is so close the the real thing that it revolutionized my life as a vegetarian. You could easily pass it to a meat eater without them noticing it.

AHEF Vegetarian Kofta ( Meat balls )

Well this was surprisingly tasty, the meat balls or kofta come in a can with it own sauce. The sauce is excellent and gives the kofta an excellent taste. I also tried to put the kofta in puff pastry and it tasted great. If you just take a fork you can grind it and use the result instead of minced meat.

AHEF Vegetarian Steak

Out of the entire AHEF collection this is the one I liked least, or maybe I just did not experiment enough with it.

AHEF Vegetarian luncheon

I fell in love with this one. It is ready to eat out of the can. The consistency is very much like luncheon, the spices in it make it smell and taste like luncheon, the nice thing is that unlike luncheon this does not include the other parts of the animal that no one wants to buy all ground up so you can not see them. This is a heart clean and nutritious fast snack.

AHEF Vegetarian Fried Chicken

Fried is the operative word is fried not chicken. This one is a vegetarian pane. It tastes quite nice once fried. It takes a little less time to fry than chicken so take care not to burn them. The taste is nice and it feels quite nice, it actually mimics the feel of a chicken burger in your mouth. Remember this thing is made from Soya beans so it is just as nutritious as chicken or meat without the cholesterol.

AHEF Vegetarian Frankfurters

These look just like sausages, they smell like sausages ( what do sausages smell like in the first place? ) but they do not really taste like sausages. Well what do you expect all your dreams to come true. Well the nice thing is that they taste nice and with the proper seasoning and some grilled onions it just passes as a sausage. Well it is not as bad as it sounds it tastes quite nice. But take care since they do not have the luxury of using animal intestines to hold the sausages together the outer covering is quite delicate, if you fry this you have to turn it over frequently for it not to stick to the pan and loose it outer part.

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An Indian Alternative

To all those veggies out there...my whole hearted condolences !!
Having lived here for close to 4 years, I am aware of the desperation that comes out of not finding a vegetarian place to eat out.
Being of Indian origin myself, let me mention that any Indian restaurant anywhere should have a decent list of vegetarian menus on their cards. (If not sue them !!)
In Cairo, try the Nile Bukhara in Maadi a small restaurant tucked away at the beginning of Misr Helwan Road from the maadi Corniche. (Add : #43, Misr Helwan Rd. Maadi; or call 380 5999) They have an Indian cook so its as authentic as it can get.
But do note that their portions can be very small and may seem extremely inadequate for people with healthy apetites, especially after all that aroma wafting in from the open grill. Prices are moderately expensive, but again this is not a restaurant review so I leave it at that.. Bon apetit !
Will pass on more information as and when I get to know.
From a sympathetic soul.
Anja Das

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