Life. Yoga. Joy.
Inspiring a life with smiles...™
I recently celebrated one full month as a committed vegetarian. Being pretty excited about the whole change in my eating, I have been sharing my adventure openly with my SigO, friends, family, colleagues, clients, complete strangers, random people walking in the street...you get the point.
Usually the first question asked of me is "What do you do for protein?" That one I kind of expected. Thanks to some reading I have been doing lately, I am happy to explain the myriad of ways I consume lots of protein on a plant-based diet. The question that has me flabbergasted though, is the one I never thought I would get:
"So you're a vegetarian, huh? What on EARTH do you EAT?"
Perhaps because I was never a huge meat eater before, or maybe it is because I always liked fresh fruits and veggies, or possibly because it never occurred to me that anyone would think that I would lack for food, this question has left me speechless more than once.
What do I eat?
The question should be:
"How do you keep yourself from eating EVERYTHING at ONCE?"
INSTAGRAM abounds with succulent photos of COLORFUL delicacies created by vegan chefs.
FACEBOOK has pages devoted to vegetarians and vegans eager to share HEALTHY recipes and tips.
TWITTER explodes with the tweets of those on a LUSCIOUS plant-based lifestyle.
And in my favorite hangout - OUR LOCAL LIBRARY - I keep discovering books positively overflowing with GORGEOUS pictures of easy-to-make vegetarian and vegan creations: chilis, soups, salads, stir frys, curries, smoothies, pastas, entrees, hors d'oeuvres, appetizers, desserts - all made with unprocessed, readily available rices, grains, barleys, quinoa, lentils, vegetables, fruits, alternative milks (many with instructions how to make from scratch), legumes, etc.
If anything, becoming vegetarian (or as I have been saying recently a "vegetarian with vegan leanings" to accommodate for the fact that I still eat the occasional dairy cheese, honey, or egg-based baked item) has opened my eyes to the EXTRAORDINARY food choices available.
This weekend alone I had a smorgasbord of delights including:
The most difficult part of my weekend was on Friday afternoon when I poured over several vegan cookbooks trying to pick out which ones I wanted to make for my lunches and dinners this coming week. I even convinced my lovely SigO - a confirmed carnivore - to prepare one meatless meal to eat together this week. (Homemade butternut squash lasagna - the ricotta will be dairy-based to ease him into the project!)
So what do I eat as a vegetarian? Perhaps the true question should be:
"Which FABULOUS meal did you - a vegetarian - indulge your senses in this week?"
I really should be taking more pictures of the foods I eat as proof to skeptics that a plant-based diet is beyond compare in the delicious department. Most of the time, though, I am too busy diving into the meal to remember to snap a picture! However I do have at least one...
So I leave you with an image of one of this past week's yummy offerings - a Mexican inspired dish made with rice and homemade salsa, a big mug of ginger tea, and cornichon pickles with an umeboshi plum! Trust me when I say my limited photo skills do not do it justice...it was drool-worthy to the last morsel!
May you enjoy your food, as I have been doing, with smiles!
Samantha Eve, a