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I never intended to become a vegetarian—and technically, I’m still not one—but since meeting and living with Chris, I’ve come to appreciate meat-free foods. We don’t really keep meat in the house (except for the occasional carton of egg whites when we’re baking cookies or something, if that counts), and we often go to one of the many vegetarian or vegetarian-friendly restaurants in New York, since there are so many.
I do still eat meat on occasion, though over the past year-and-a-half, I’ve very gradually transitioned from eating it once a day to once a week. It hasn’t been a conscious effort, exactly. To be honest, it’s more that I’ve just gotten used to it and come to really enjoy some of the benefits of a vegetarian diet. I feel like I have more energy and get sick less frequently. I also sleep better—much better—than I used to.
Of course, there are plenty of other factors that contribute, but some of the other perks include that feeling that I am making a choice that benefits the planet and its creatures (hah, creatures)—we humans love feeling “green,” don’t we?—and the sweetness of saving a little money.
And did I mention how awesome and amusing fake meat is? It basically is what it sounds like: texturized soy or gluten protein flavored to taste like various meat products. For example, the other night, I made this masaman curry with vegetarian duck in it. We had just spent the day in Chinatown wandering around and stocking up on various canned fake meat products we’d never encountered before.
Last night, we made pad thai with fried gluten, which was oddly similar to scrambled egg. We also threw in some chopped peanuts. Since we were out, Chris went to the deli on the corner and came home with a pack of Uncle Jesse’s nuts. I about died laughing…