Thursday, April 21, 2011

Our vegetarian week

I said I would make us vegetarians for a week within the first 49 days of my Grandpa's passing. Many Buddhist families will eat vegetarian for some time during the first 49 days or even longer. One of my brothers will be vegetarian for a year.

Today is day 8 of us being vegetarians. We will likely continue for a couple more days since I have lots of leftover food. So far it hasn't been so bad. I have never done this before. The longest I probably have ever gone was a day or two. I grew up eating meat. A lot of meat. In fact, I pretty much grew up on meat and rice. We ate a lot of vegetables in our family as well but vegetables were only optional in meals.

Overall, I think we did well as a family. I was sort of missing meat around day 3 but then it was fine again on day 4. I think it helped that I cooked a lot of new dishes and we had lots of variety. It wasn't too bad cooking without meat in the equation. We allowed Tristan to eat meat here and there but basically he ate what we ate 80% of the time. There were maybe two days where he had chicken or fish in one of his meals. Considering how picky he is as a 2 year old toddler, I think we can call it a success :) It wasn't easy at times but then again it's not easy sometimes even when we eat things with meat in it. For a few days, we had to bribe him to eat every single lettuce from his Caesar salad. It was a bribe per lettuce! Ugh! The third time we served the salad to him, he ate more voluntarily. Goodness. As for Jean-Louis, it seemed like a breeze. For him, he didn't grow up on so much meat and has always urged me to cook less meat. He could probably go vegetarian for months!

Here is what I cooked for us during our vegetarian week:
Obviously, with a menu like that, being vegetarians wouldn't be so bad. I took extra time to plan my week but if we were to become long term vegetarians, we probably would be eating simpler food. However, the above menu does prove that vegetarians can eat well. Some of the new dishes I made will likely become classics and I will likely serve them as part of a multi-course meal, along with a meat dish :) One thing Jean-Louis and I agree on is that there is no way we can be Vegans. In a way, I think the dairy and eggs saved us. Without meat, dairy, and eggs in the equations, we would have grumbled our way through the week. Probably.


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