Sunday, February 22, 2009

Going veggie

People often think I'm vegetarian. I'm not sure why this is. Perhaps they are buying into a stereotype? Because of course the girl who drives a Prius with the "Buy Fresh Buy Local" and "Coexist" stickers, doesn't wear leather, and buys from socially conscious companies would necessarily also be a vegetarian. But nope, sorry to dispel the myth: I am happily a meat-eater.

Why? I could go into biological and evolutionary reasons: that our teeth and digestive systems were designed to process meat. I could go into nutritional reasons: that meat contains essential nutrients that our bodies need that are hard to find in other foods. None of these, however, are why I eat meat. I eat meat because I enjoy it. It tastes good.

I don't eat pork. Pigs are more intelligent than dogs, and we don't eat dogs, do we? Cows, chickens, and fish are sufficiently stupid for my consumption.

So I've established that I love meat. I don't have to eat it all the time, and I certainly have been known to eat many meat-free meals. But it would be hard to go without it for a long period of time. Which is why I'm giving meat up for Lent. Since I was little, I give up something that would be a challenge to give up for a full forty days in the run-up to Easter Sunday. This year it's meat. I know I'll be able to do it, but it means no Thai green curry with chicken, no sushi, no chicken taquitos at Chevy's, and no burgers. I craved beef in India because very few people eat beef, what with the cow being sacred and all. But I made it through, and I'll make it through a meatless period just the same.

In the few days before Wednesday, when Lent begins, I plan to eat mussels over pasta, roast chicken, tuna noodle casserole, and finally, I'll have a nice, big hamburger to celebrate Fat Tuesday. And then my adventure as a vegetarian will begin.


Michael Doss said...

Good luck! I think you'll do much better over 40 days than most other people trying to do the same thing - you know how and like to cook, you've lived with (and cooked for) vegetarians, and you live in the bay area (your restaurant choices are many).

If anything, you can use Lent as a time to branch out, try new things, find new ingredients. I'm curious to hear how it goes!

Teresa said...

I definitely am going to use this time to learn to make more meatless dishes other than my usual repertoire of stir-fries and pasta!