Tuesday, April 21, 2009
My vegetarian adventure
I've decided to go vegetarian for the next 365 days!
As it is, I actually started on April 1st.
One of my friends thought it was an April Fools Day joke, but I was a few days short of my Easter vacation and it seemed like a good idea to start. Besides it's spring; A lot of fresh vegetables will show up on the market in the next few weeks, and I will have a lot of delicious ingredients to choose from.
The idea to become a vegetarian didn't come to me overnight. First, I love vegetables. Second, I have grown more and more sceptical towards modern farming as the animals live on restricted diets and they are given minimal space to live on. Modern breeding have turned many animals into meat producing giants - with large bodies and feet that struggle to carry the weight. I asked myself, will I continue to support this business?
A vegetarian diet is also supposed to be healthy, but expensive and time consuming.
I am curious to see if this is true.
In this house hold we spend $1000 on food and grocery items every month. I hope my project won't add to an already bulging food budget.
In the weeks prior to my adventure, I spent many hours on the Internet, searching for vegetarian recipes and nutrition. I also started a subscription on Vegetarian Times - a magazine dedicated to vegetarian cooking.
I live a fairly busy life. I won't have time to cook time consuming meals every day. I eat out several times a month, and vegetarian menu charts are few and far between here. I think the restaurant business will give me a hard time in the months to come, but I'm crossing my fingers.
Actually, I met my first 'wall' during my Easter holiday. I was starving, and dropped by a nice lunch restaurant. As a meat eater, I have loved the place and eaten there many times in the past. I have seen vegetarian dishes on the menu, so I thought it was a safe place to start.
Not so. On this day the chef was out, and the temp chef had made two dishes: Meat balls or smoked salmon.
I told the waiter I don't eat meat.
'You'll have fish then', she said and that was that!
I found three restaurants that offered vegetarian dishes during my holiday, but the menu was repeated every day and to be honest, it will probably take a while until I eat mushroom risotto, vegetarian lasagna (which contained too much salt, by the way) or broccoli and gnocchi in cheese sauce again. Two weeks on this diet took the fun out of dining out.
I hope my holiday just turned out to be a small bump in the road.
I'm still excited about my project and I can't wait to try some of the new vegetarian recipes I have found.