So later this week, I will begin my journey down Veggie lane.
I thought I might share this morning some observations in my research and preparation for vegetarianism:
1. Vegetarianism doesn’t mean eating organic or non-processed foods.
This one was surprising for me. I thought inherently, that vegetarians were also pro-organic, and con-processed (is that even a word). Having already read In Defense of Food (by Michael Pollan – my review is here), I have an understanding of eating like humans probably should. A menu full of greens, seeds, and a little meat, and a healthy education on “responsible food buying” (Read: instruction on hormones, good fats, and the like). But from the forums I have visited and websites I have viewed, this isn’t always the case with vegetarians.
For example, in soliciting feedback on the transition to vegetarianism, on almost every occasion, people suggested that I visited the frozen vegetarian section in the grocery store. There, I could find things that look like “real food”, but were in fact not meaty. Chicken nuggets, spaghetti and meatballs, hamburger patties … all totally, 100%, meat-free. I appreciate the suggestion, and I might even venture in the processed-vegetarian meal world, but I found it a touch surprising, based on my presuppositions.
2. Vegetarians seem to care a lot about animals and them not being eaten.
I know this sounds like something even your run-of-the-mill vegetarian-experimenter would know, but I must say, I thought there might be more info out there about the vegetarian lifestyle as a health-conscious choice. Everywhere I looked, I read the health benefits as a support for the push to not kill or slaughter animals for food. This was something that was very new for me, seeing as I am not experimenting with vegetarianism with any real specific “principle” in mind, but thought at least there would be significant support for a “I’m a vegetarian because it is the superior means to eat healthily”. If there is this sect in vegetarianism, I haven’t really found that vocal group, but I will admit my research may still be incomplete.
3. Vegetarianism seems very gourmet.
So, in my research, I have been doing some searching for what anyone working on a new diet would be looking for: recipes. Well, I found them. Lots of them. With hummus, and olives, and mushrooms, and hummus (see what I did there), and couscous, and agave nectar, and miso, and tofu.
Can someone tell me where the cheesy potatoes are? Or the 5-cheese mac and cheese recipes? What about at least green bean casserole, or fried rice recipes? It never fails that every time I type “vegetarian recipes” or even “easy vegetarian recipes”, there were plenty of selections, but never really things that I would initially … eat.
Of course, that is the point of this little endeavor. Trying new things, right? Well, I am working on taking the meat out of some of my favorite home recipes currently (vegetable and potato soups, for example), and working from there.
* * *
No real thought or lesson for the day today … just wanted to share with you all some of my thoughts on my preparation into this new world.
On a side note, meat is going out with a bang at my house. On the 30th (Tuesday), I am having a “Farewell to Meat Extravaganza”. We are firing up the grill in effigy, having friends bring their favorite meats to grill out as we revel in the joys of “meat games” (ok, so I made that up … I can’t really find any “meat games” to play)
On Wednesday, I’ll share my eating plan for the month, and how I plan to not die of starvation. Should be fun.