While I have flirted with vegetarianism all my life I admit I enjoy eating meat. In university, I worked my way through Linda McCartney's Home Cooking, but by graduate school, and after being diagnosed with anemia, I started to eat meat again. I hoped with a more thoughtful approach.
Where does this come from? Did it live a "good life" before coming to my plate. I am trying to instill these same ideas in my girls. I am also working to reduce the meat we do eat. We try to mix it up. Fish, poultry and red meat are not strangers at our table. I am fully aware of the horrors of factory farming. I want to eat more meatless meals and slide a little away from our routine. My goal this year has been two meatless meals added to our weekly repertoire.
My catalyst is three-fold, really: compassion for living things; impact on our health; and the impact meat consumption has on the environment.
In my quest for ideas, I learned of Meatless Monday:
Meatless Monday, along with Wheatless Wednesday, were initiated as a World War I effort by the U.S. Food Administration to encourage Americans to "do their part" in aiding the war effort by reducing the consumption of key food staples. In 2003 the effort was recreated by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health’s Center for a Livable Future to help Americans adapt to a healthier lifestyle. With an endorsement in 2009 by Sir Paul McCartney - and in turn Gwenyth Paltrow at GOOP - a movement is being built. (Check out the Meatless Monday website for lots of great ideas.) We have added to that "Soup Saturday" (a vegetarian soup) - which I can see morphing into "Salad Saturday" come summer (hopefully inspired by our own garden).
My family - mostly my husband and youngest daughter have made a few groans - but no real complaints. My challenge is two in the house with soy allergies - that makes it tough - and keeping it varied. Lots of lentils in the cupboard!
So, what vegetarian fare scores high on your table?