Well, almost Week Three. It’ll be three weeks tomorrow. But this is when I have time to write: on Week Two plus 6 days.
I am still loving exploring new recipes as we take on this new way of eating. It’s not intuitive, yet, but I am making a discovery: I prefer to eat straight up vegan foods and not attempt to re-create “meat foods” with vegan stand-ins. For example: I’m fine with chick pea or black bean burgers, but am actually grossed out at the thought of eating “pretend beef” burgers. I used to love bacon, but I am not running to try that recipe that takes banana peels and liquid smoke to bake up a bacon-like substitute. I am not sure about this product that I saw in the store called “just eggs” that is not at all eggs, (it’s made from mung bean protein isolate); it comes in a pourable container for making something scrambled to resemble eggs. I prefer to just scramble up some tofu if I want that texture.
Now, I’m not an expert in the “vegan-but-trying-to-taste-like-something-else” line of foods- I’ve only tried a few like jackfruit breakfast “sausage” patties (the flavor was really great!) and I have cooked up some soy “nuggets” on a night when something like chicken nuggets was what I wanted to complement something else that I was making (limp, pretty blah) but… nah, I like vegan, straight up. What helped me to make this distinction- besides my trial and error- was a new podcast that I’ve been listening to: “How to Vegan” where the author did a whole episode on what she calls “vegan swaps” and enthusiastically offered a list of things to try. I’ll try some more, I guess, but for now, I’m loving my hours in the kitchen.
I cooked exclusively this week from this book:
It was a gift from my daughter. (Thanks, Harry.). It had some real high notes (mushroom lasagna and saag “plant-neer”) which, surprisingly, came close to being “vegan- but- trying- to- taste- like- something else,” but the winner, for me, was the butternut squash-lentil tacos. (pictured at the top). I love tacos.
I had my first “awkward moment” when I got a nice inquiry from a church where I’ll be visiting for a service followed by a festive dinner. They’d caught wind of the change in my diet and asked “So, what does the bishop eat?” I’m still trying to work out a gracious answer to that without sounding like a registered dietician or a pain in the neck.
Your ideas, recipes, wisdom welcomed!