Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Lent Status Report

Apart from an inadvertant bite of bread with butter/cheese I've been keeping this Lent thing up with no big problems. Just a few days after I started, I lost one whole kilo (2 lbs) which was quite a great perk if you ask me, and also a good reason to keep it up. I've lost another half kilo since then, and I think it's owing to the lack of butter in my diet. Boy, do we like butter here.

My breakfasts are a pretty standard bowl of oatmeal made on water, with raisins, cinnamon/sugar and flaxseed oil. Filling and quite satisfactory.

Lunches have been mostly bread with a smear of bean paste and beets, misc. vegan cold cuts, and cut up fruit and veg. Seriously, I haven't felt like I've been missing out. I would like to note that the bean paste has 15% protein, as opposed to a smear of Danish leverpostej, which has 24%. The vegan cold cuts have as much protein (wheat protein) as turkey cold cuts.

Dinners have been what they normally are, either vegetarian dishes with veggies and lentils, or dishes using quorn or soy meat substitutes. I made a mean chili sin carne the other night, and you could hardly tell the quorn/meat difference. Honestly.

If I am lacking any protein in this manner, just through regular meals, I put extra protein in my daily routine with lots of nuts for snacks, and peanut butter/hazelnut butter on Wasa crackers.

So far, no cravings for "real" meat, though I do miss cheese, so I'll find a good goat cheese to satiate that. I'll post some recipes I'm collecting soon.

Otherwse, I'm enjoying this little experiment, not in the least because I enjoy eating in a thoughtful manner. It's gratifying. And my body feels great, inside and out. 'Nuff said.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Two Days In

Thank you, Anonymous, for that cheerleading!

I just woke up after my second day without eating animal products, and get this, I was bright-eyed and bushy-tailed before 7 am, and I hadn't even had my coffee yet! Something good is going down here. I thought I'd post what I'd eaten for the last two days, and I might update every week or so with a Lent update and recipes.

Day 1:
breakfast: 1 cup coffee with soy milk
oatmeal with raisins, cinammon/sugar and flax oil
lunch: apple, pear, orange, high fiber crackers
dinner: Leftover rice, fried, steamed endive, coleslaw w/vinaigrette

Day 2:
breakfast: same as day 1
lunch: rye bread with bean paste/spread and pickled beets, cucumber and vegan coldcuts
dinner: Indian mélange of rice, spinach garam masala dish, carrot curry/coconut dish and potatoes in coconut and mustard

Snacks have included fruit by the bucket, and if that wasn't enough, Wasa crackers with a nice smear of hazelnut butter (better than Nutella!) and maybe a drizzle of honey. And yes I'm still eating honey.

Feeling good, and so far this is easier than I thought it would be.

Thursday, February 18, 2010


For the first time in roughly 20 years, I decided to give something up for the Lenten fast. I don't know what spurred it on, perhaps that Tuesday was Shrove Tuesday/Pancake Day/Mardis Gras, and I seemed to have forgotten why that is celebrated in the first place. Something about Jesus being 40 days in the desert, I believe. And people think Islam and Christianity are nothing remotely like each other. Huh. So, having just read Eating Animals, I've decided to eat adhere as much as possible to the food doctrine behind the book, for 40 days. That would mean mostly sticking to a vegan diet, though I'll allow for dairy from goats/sheep since Safran Foer points out that those animals have not yet been targeted by factory farming. Yet. And I'm going to Berlin in a week's time, and I will allow myself to be touristy enough to enjoy a curry wurst.

I've long wanted to give the vegan diet a try, though having three omnivores in the house has kept me back. I think though, that I'm grown up enough now to endure watching others eat a certain food, without feeling deprived. And there is an ulterior motive a well. The weight issue. My bmi is normal, but I want to see what such a diet can do for my waistline. But ultimately, I want to try the diet of the future, and understand its necessity for myself, without dreading it when it becomes inevitable. I think we can do it!

This blog isn't going on hiatus per se, but I have no idea how this will pan out, as far as yummy recipes go. We shall see.

Anybody else doing Lent?

Friday, February 12, 2010

Ah, my Reuben, I've missed you!

Sorry no pic, it's al Blogger's fault! :)

Hi there! So, we've been eating a lot of celeriac schnitzels lately, and I didn't really feel the need to keep you updated on that!

If you've read my "real" blog then you're up to speed with what I've been reading, and I am starting to look at meat consumption, in a whole new manner of ways. This recipe includes pastrami, which I just happened to have in the freezer. I will not throw perfectly good food away, so that's why I used it. A better way of paying hommage to the animal who got offed that just throwing the meat away. I once tried a version of this recipe with tempe instead of meat, in Boulder, CO, and it was delish, and I'll keep you updated if I find tempe here worth using.

So, the Reuben. The world's most perfect sandwich. Do I sound biased? Well, it's been my absolute favorite for as long as I can remember! The lowdown:

- Sour dough ryebread (NOT Danish rugbrød)
- Swiss cheese (known as Emmenthaler in these parts)
- Sauerkraut
- Pastrami (alternatively tempe)
- Russian sauce

All lovingly fried/grilled in butter. Oh, the joy it gives me. The kids even loved it, and remarked as much. I would suggest placing the ingredients in the order written here. It's important that the meat is thoroughly warmed through, and also that the cheese melts into the sauerkraut. The Russian sauce is a mystery to me, there are so many versions on the net. I use a nice big dollop (or two) of Hellman's mayo, add a splotch of ketchup, and a bit of strong mustard to boot and mix it all up. I enjoy a little extra mustard on my plate for dipping too.

The reason I've missed it? Well, I've not had much luck finding sauerkraut in this town! How did I finally get my hands on some? Our friend Cornelia, who lives on the island of Bornholm of all places, apparently has a steady supply. Go figure. So, if you ever fall over a jar, think of me, and either buy it for me, or go home and make this for yourself!