The Foodie Blogroll

To eat meat or not to eat meat? That is the question.

Note: if there is ever a time I would like you to read my blog post and give me some feed back, it is today


Hello,

So before I post the recipe's I intended to show you all I have a question.  This is something that has been on my mind lately, and I know I don't get much feedback from readers (even though I know you are all out there), if there is ever time I want to hear from my readers (okay I always love hearing from readers) but this post I would really love to hear from you all.

Before I left for Korea, I had read Amanda's blog post about contemplating to reintroduce meat back into her diet.  This got me thinking, because myself personally I don't not eat meat because I don't like it.  In fact I really did love meat, well, chicken and fish that is.  Since I stopped eating pork and beef almost nine years ago, I've never looked back, it's just not something that interested me.  When I gave up poultry however, there have been times where I really wish I was eating it, the same with seafood especially while eating sushi.

Now, I know that makes me sound like a hypocrite, to be honest, I don't really care, I hear vegetarians who claim that they don't like meat, I'm sorry but what is there not to like, other than the fact that it was once living.

This is where my question comes in.

Meat is honestly not something I crave.  It's not.  When I look at fellow bloggers posting their recipes with meat, it doesn't pain me to look at it, nor does it instill any sort of salivation processes because it's just not something I crave.  The thing is, and I realized this in Korea, being a vegan is sometimes hard yes, we all know this, but sometimes it's almost close to impossible.  While being there, there were some things I just stayed away from, because instinct told me that there was going to be animal product in it (soup broth's especially), other things were a little harder to know, so I would have to make sure to ask if it was vegetarian or not.  The truth is, sometimes I feel like a complete nuisance.  If I go to someone's house for dinner I have to make sure to bring some sort of dish just so that I know that there is something I can eat for sure.  This gets to be a little ridiculous at times.  I mean I had to prepare some food in order for me to go to Korea just in case.

Sure, I love being in the kitchen.  Making up snacks, meals and desserts are things I will almost never turn down doing, but to have to prepare so far in advance for certain things it's just frustrating at times.  My intent is not to give up on veganism, not at all, because I love the lifestyle, I love the food and the meals we eat, and how veganism in my opinion is the most creative since you have to replicate flavours, and replace foods and know how to do it in a way that still remains flavour-wise, well good.

My thought however is this.  Wouldn't it be nice if I could go to a restaurant and not have to worry so much if perhaps my soup was made with a little fish sauce?  Or perhaps if the salad really sucks; I'm sorry but when the only option on a restaurant menu is a salad with lettuce, tomato and cucumber there isn't any other way of saying it other than this: it sucks.  It sucks so much, especially when you are looking around and seeing other people's meals that look so good.  I mean, eating a piece of fish from time to time hasn't hurt anyone right?  So why shouldn't I be able to as well?  Well here's the thing.  Myself personally, I don't not eat meat because at one point veganism was this thing that allowed my eating disorder to be easier (I'm sorry but that's the truth, and that's what appealed to me so much at the beginning.  Which is why I'm almost positive some people are still vegan because when you look like you weigh 70 pounds and you continually announce how this is fat-free, or how it contains little to no calories you're just not making a case for yourself).  So yes, as I was saying... it's not that I'm worried that eating meat is going to make my waistline a little wider, or that the number on the scale is going to tip up (after my ed I barely ever even weigh myself anymore, maybe one every month/month-and-a-half?), but it's the psychological fear.

I am scared to eat meat again.  When I stop eating meat it's because I no longer distinguish them as food, something that is on a plate.  I see it as something that was living, something that once breathed, something that once fought to stay alive, something that once roamed the planet, and now it's on my plate.  I've been doing a little reading on how to re-introduce meat into a vegetarian/vegan's diet, but I would love to hear from you all, as I know there are ton of people who were once in my position how they started implementing meat back into their diet.

Now before I get any hate mail, as I know there are readers (hopefully not mine) that I've heard like to bash people for their choices when it comes to eating meat.  Just because you are a vegan or vegetarian doesn't mean you have to be one for life.  Let's think of pregnancy, it would almost be crazy to not eat meat while going through pregnancy.  I don't intend on eating meat on a daily basis, or even on a regular basis to be honest.  What I want however is some ease.  I want that if I'm going out to a fancy restaurant (which when my show ended before I left for Korea, we went to this beautiful restaurant... well there wasn't even an option for me because everything had either fish/poultry/beef, so I just sat there.  It's not fun, and it's times like those where you not only look like you're a freak, you look like you have a problem.  I don't have a problem anymore, and I don't want that to show in my diet either).  I would like for when my boyfriend comes back from Korea and which I know for a fact he is going to want to celebrate with sushi, I want to be able to go out, eat and enjoy with him, and not just cucumber, or carrot rolls because let's be honest here they just don't compete with dynamite rolls.

I don't want to feel guilty that I'm doing this either.  I will not feel like a failure because I know I am successful at being vegan (even though I eat Greek yoghurt and ice cream from time to time) but that's life.  Life is not about being absolute, it's not about denying yourself pleasures, especially pleasures as simple as food.  I know it has been years since I've eaten meat, and almost a complete year since I've eaten fish.  I know of the amounts of animal products I have not eaten and have passed up in these past months and years while changing my lifestyle, I know I am capable of doing it.  I just want to make my life a little easier when it just shouldn't be a difficult process (eating out at a restaurant for one, or wanting to go camping and wanting to enjoy a piece of fish with some fries).  I still want to continue my vegan lifestyle because there is nothing wrong with it, but if once in a blue moon I want to eat a piece of fish I feel that it is okay.  I have no intent right now on re-introducing cheese or eggs, but maybe that's how I should start before introducing fish back in?  I'm not sure I really would like some advice, I'm almost begging you all to give me some advice on how I could go about transitioning back into eating fish and getting over my "it was once a living specie", to know that it is okay... does that make sense?

...

Pumpkin Pie Overnight Cereal

 

And just to make it so that this post actually has a recipe on it, this morning's phenomenal breakfast.  Inspired by a medley of different pumpkin combinations I have been stumbling upon I melded different mixtures and came up with something phenomenal.  The smoothie yesterday was delicious yes, but in comparison to today's breakfast... I would not look at yesterday's breakfast again.  This literally tasted one hundred and one percent like pumpkin pie.  The addition of peanut butter was brilliant, and definitely made the pumpkin flavours stand out even more.  I will be making this again tomorrow for breakfast only a hot oat version.  We shall see which version is better!

Ingredients:
  • 1/3 cup oats
  • 1/3 cup soy milk
  • Dash of salt
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp cloves
  • 1 banana, ripe and mashed
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds + 1/4 tsp chia seeds
  • 1 tbsp walnuts - chopped
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin seeds
  • 1 heaping tbsp peanut butter
Directions:

Throw all of the ingredients in a bowl (except the extra 1/4 tsp chia seeds, walnuts and pumpkin seeds).  Mix thoroughly.  Let sit in the fridge overnight.  In the morning add a little bit of water or extra milk to loosen up the concoction a bit.

Top with additional chia seeds, walnuts, pumpkin seeds and dollop of peanut butter.

What are your thoughts/opinions?

6 comments:

WesleyS said...

The question it seems you're proposing here is "Why?".

If the only reason is continuation of a prior bad habit, and not for some moral reason, then perhaps you're looking at it from the wrong point of view... Instead, you should be, at least in my humble opinion, asking "Why not?"

If you are afraid of it, maybe start with a lighter meat. Seafood seems like a good one, since it's a rather simple and light food. Chicken also is rather light and easy to digest.

Anyways, I guess what I'm trying to say is... "Why not?" Do something crazy -- it might be a bit uncomfortable at first, but you'll look back and feel pretty excited, cause making progress always feels awesome, IMHO.

LittleDanielle. said...

I am very one sided on this issue, as it hits home pretty hard. I've curved my entire life to reflect my eating habits. It's been such an amazing experience filled with positive changes that I can't imagine going back. It's not for everyone, and I understand that, but every time I walk past an ice cream stand, or a burger joint, and I feel a craving, I ask myself, "Is that cow's life less important than my craving/convenience?"
I think life is different for everyone. You can only find the answer you're looking for in yourself. You're the one who needs to look yourself in the mirror at the end of the day. Good luck!

Melissa said...

I've been going through a similar self reflection over the past few months. I stopped eating meat for dietary reasons, it is so much easier to pass something up when you just don't eat that category of food. It served me well in that way and after a while I began to think, "if I can live without killing other creatures then that it how I should live." I'm not sure this has led to me being the healthiest me I can be, but I am surviving. I'm not sure if that is enough anymore.

A month ago I purposely walked into a restaurant and after much anguish ordered a grilled salmon entree. After not eating any meat for 6 years (ovo-lacto) it was weird to say the least. Many of my reasons for wanting to try it are the same as yours. But I also think... is my convenience more important than this animal's life?

I still have not come to terms with my own answer to that question. I haven't eaten meat again since that day and I have the same struggle everytime I think about it... I have been thinking about a month trial in November where I will start eating meat again, but I'm still not committed.

So as to how to reintroduce it? I don't think there are really any physical concerns, just mental. I think the best way to overcome mental hurdles is to just jump in and try it. In the end, only you can decide if it is right for you.

-M

Laurinha said...

This is a tough one... I have recently gone back to an omnivorous diet and have shifted my focus from "restriction" to "selection".
Briefly, this means that I concentrate on foods that feel and taste good to me, and these happen to be high-quality, natural foods that have been carefully tended and harvested/slaughtered.
Of course this still means that a lot of my meals are vegan/vegetarian, since I had rather eat no meat or fish than compromise on quality/ethics of the product. Luckily, I love vegetables as much as the next food, so this never is a problem! What it also means is that I have regained some flexibility: to me, the moments shared with loved ones around food matter and I won't let any "special requirements" spoil it for me (or others) as long as these are not imposed by ill-health, of course.
There are few things more irritating that people going on about what they eat or don't eat and making it sound like they have found THE TRUTH and how their way is the only way... Everyone must make their own choices, based on health, ethics, lifestyle, etc... and they will be different, which is fine.
In the end, do what is best for you and try not to preach; after all, it's only fuel, something to keep us in the best possible health so that we can get on with other things.

mherzog said...

Here is a good video on meat: http://carnism.com

Samantha said...

Thank you all for taking the time to give me some input. It's given me a lot of things to think about both towards continuing a veg diet, as well as considering whether or not to occasionally delve into a pescatarian diet.

There is still much thought about what I am going to do, but reading some of your situations that are similar to mine it does help. I'm not sure when I will make this decision, but I figure it's something that's just going to "happen" if it does.

Thank you all again, much love and appreciation, Samantha <3