Vegetarianism = Uncharted Territory - A Glimpse of Me Blog at - 129843

A Glimpse of Me

Vegetarianism = Uncharted Territory 
Oct. 13, 2009 11:10 am 
Updated: Nov. 6, 2009 12:42 pm
My nephew's new girlfriend is a vegetarian, so my nephew recently started eating vegetarian as well.  As soon as my daughters got wind of this transition, they decided that they, too, were going to "go vegetarian".  That lasted about 22 minutes, and then they realized that they would have to give up a lot of their favorite foods to become completely vegetarian...AND they would have to start eating some of the things they despise to be sure they were getting all the proper nutrients.  Because I didn't want my girls to get discouraged about the idea of eating more healthy, I proposed a compromise.  I will cook two or three vegetarian meals per week and they can help me with the preparations.  That way we can get an idea of what it's like to prepare and eat vegetarian dishes, but still enjoy some of our favorite meat dishes in the process. 

I did some research over the past couple of weeks and, while I realize it's not just as simple as cutting meat out of your diet, I didn't realize just how complicated vegetarianism can be!  The biggest obstacle is that none of us likes tofu, so we'll have to get our protein from other sources, such as beans, eggs, and dairy products.  I knew I couldn't do this alone, so I posted a request for vegetarian recipes on the Recipe Exchange here at AllRecipes.  The wonderful people who frequent the Recipe Exchange stepped up to the plate and I got some really delicious sounding recommendations.  When I went grocery shopping this past Saturday, my basket included items such as lentils, mushrooms, Nature's Burger mix, and other vegetarian ingredients.  The girls and I decided we will have Nature's Burgers for dinner tonight and we're going to try the Lentil Loaf on Friday.  I'm really looking forward to venturing into the Uncharted Territory of Vegetarian Cooking!  Wish me luck!!
Oct. 13, 2009 11:58 am
That's great to get your girls interested in nutrition, Keri. I was vegetarian before, but could never convince my hubby to do the same, now I eat only chicken and seafood.
Oct. 13, 2009 12:22 pm
Congratulations and good luck! Not only will it be a healthier lifestyle, but you're helping the environment by not consuming as much meat AND your grocery bills will probably be lower. It's a win, win, win situation :)
Oct. 14, 2009 4:57 am
Good luck! We try to eat veg 4-5 times a really does save on the grocery bill! It doesn't have to be complicated, lots of times we'll just have a big salad and soup for dinner!
Oct. 17, 2009 12:58 pm
Going veggie doesn't have to be as hard as some people crack it up to be, but it's great that you're concerned about the nutritious points. Something that helps a lot of people out is the "fake meats." I recently had vegetarian tacos using the crumbles you can get in a bag. They were very tasty. I'd also recommend "The Teen's Vegetarian Cookbook" by Judy Krismanic. It has simple, "normal" foods that don't scream "I'm a vegetarian living on dandylions and tofu," and your girls are probably more likely to enjoy it. Good luck in this new realm of food!
Oct. 19, 2009 2:22 pm
If the fake meats don't impress you, you can still make balanced, nutritious meals like rice and beans with a green salad. Or look to some of the Indian dished. A vegetable curry is tasty and served with rice or naan or roti is satisfying. You aren't going vegan so you will still get the dairy proteins. We've been doing "meatless Mondays for years and have just decided to up it to 2-3 times a week. Good Luck!
Oct. 22, 2009 4:10 pm
Hi Keri; I'm freckles (Tracey) and I requested a recipe for Shrimp and Scallops from recipe exchange and I received many replies but yours caught my attention! I am about to make it now! I'm excited! I've read every review that you received for this recipe and I will post one as well. Thank you for your prompt response! OK I'm going in!
Oct. 22, 2009 4:13 pm
ooops didn't realize that I posted on a vegetarian oooops pardon me.
Nov. 6, 2009 12:42 pm
i have been giving serious thought to doing one or two meals a week vegetarian too!. Good Luck Keri.
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About Me
I have loved cooking since I was a young girl helping my mother make dinner or bake cookies during school vacations. My favorite class in elementary school was "Nutrition", because we cooked almost every day. I have two daughters who love cooking and baking as much as I do and my husband is even getting interested. He recently started making bread from scratch and he's doing an awesome job of it! We share our home with pets of all different kinds, including birds, cats, dogs, rabbits, a rat, snakes, frogs, a tarantula, and a turtle. We also provide foster care for a local dog rescue, taking in abused, neglected, abandoned dogs and giving them a safe, loving environment to live in until they find their "fur-ever" homes.
My favorite things to cook
Rosemary garlic roasted chicken with roasted garlic gravy; Skillet cabbage; Almost any baked goods; Anything I can make in my slow cooker! Somewhere around September 2008 I decided I was going to start baking all the bread my children and I eat. I'm COMPLETELy loving it and my kids like to brag that "my mommy MADE this bread!" Their favorite is when I make bread items that aren't your traditional loaf of bread, like hamburger buns, bagels, and soft pretzels.
My favorite family cooking traditions
For several generations, my father's family has made a "family tradition" dessert item at each major holiday. At Easter, it's Italian Cheesecake, made with ricotta cheese and anise flavoring (published as "Italian Cheesecake II", if you'd like to check it out). At Thanksgiving, it's "Roly Polies", which were invented by my great grandmother when she had leftover pie crust dough she needed to use up. My absolute favorite, though, is Christmas, when we make Birds Nests. These are made out of walnut-sized balls of a sweet pie crust type dough rolled out very thin. Then we cut slits in the dough without cutting through the edge, gather every other strip, twist them up into a jumble, and then deep fry the pastries. When they are cooled, we sprinkle them with powdered sugar. It doesn't matter how many we make, they all get eaten!
My cooking triumphs
I managed to make decorated sugar cookies for Christmas 2008 that turned out awesome!! I've NEVER gotten sugar cookies to turn out good looking enough to warrant decorating them. They always turn into shapeless blobs. This particular time I reduced the amount of butter in the recipe by 25% and chilled the cut-outs for 15 minutes immediately before baking them. They turned out beautiful!
My cooking tragedies
My first attempt at making Fairy Food candy (also called seafoam candy) was a disaster! I tried cooking it too quickly over too high of heat, so it burned, smelling up the entire house for DAYS. Thank goodness I still had enough ingredients (and courage!) to try again, and everyone at my family's Christmas gathering was impressed with my second attempt. I conveniently "forgot" to tell them about the first batch :-)
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