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Mama Vegan, Papa Vegan, Day 4
cap, captain miss america

It’s lucky today was the halfway point, because I don’t know how much more of this my mom can do.

When I called, they were eating dinner, which was Vegan pulled pork from “It’s All Good,” a company that makes ready-made vegan products. I have had their beef skewers and thought they were delicious.

Sharon: This wouldn’t be my favorite meal. Daddy likes it more than I do. I don’t like the texture. It’s kind of rubbery.

John: Pork is rubbery!

Sharon: I’m counting down. I’ve kind of had enough. It was fine. But I’m basically eating the same things every day. I would be more adventurous, but I don’t have time to be more adventurous.

John My food today was similar to my food yesterday, but I’m saving the world and doing greater things for everybody so I feel good.

Mary (a family friend) asked us to go to dinner tomorrow and have birthday cake for their son tomorrow night and I said, “we are so screwed.” I explained to her that I was vegan for the week. I told her that I would come over, but I just wouldn’t eat any cake, and she said, “but we’re getting Baskin Robbins ice cream cake, are you sure you don’t want any?” And I told her I couldn’t eat it.

I think it’s good. I think it’s delicious. It’s got pulled pork sauce, so it’s nice and tangy. I think your mother is turning religious, she says this is like Lent.

Mirrored from Antagonia.net.

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I think that the most surprising aspect of this experiment to me is that your mother, who is the more food-adventurous of your parents, is having more difficulty with the challenge.

I had food today with trace dairy in it for Mike's birthday. It hit me pretty soon after I'd eaten it and I've been feeling pretty ick since. My nose is stuffy, my throat feels tight, and my innards have been complaining. And what's really bizarre is that for so long I just accepted these conditions as normal.

The problem for my mom, I think, comes down to the fact that she hasn't had time to cook her own meals from scratch, is finding herself limited by what the grocery store provides-- especially now with trying to avoid going to Whole Foods, which I think is the most accessible natural foods store for them. My dad, on the other hand, has set foods that he enjoys, figured out which are vegan, and is eating them and happy because he is eating foods he enjoys. I think he is also thinking about it more from the health-conscious-choice perspective, which suits him because he is one of those people who has tried a lot of restrictive diets over the years.

My mom would also probably be happier eating soy and other vegan proteins if she were eating them in a not-fake-meat form. I think the fake meat thing is making her more aware that it's not meat than it is allowing her to appreciate the complexity of the food she is eating. She probably would have done better with some plain nutmeat or seitan or tempeh or tofu that wasn't "disguised" as meat.

Yeah, I rarely eat "fake meat" and would rarely suggest it to someone who is considering a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle. I don't really like most of them anymore, because they tend to be too salty.

Being able to cook is really the key to being successful as a vegan, I think (or really on any restricted diet). Otherwise, the convenience foods are hard to find and tend to be pricey. On the otherhand, cooking vegan food at home is pretty damned cheap! This came up recently on Facebook with one of my friends who thought that eating organic/non-GMO must be expensive.

I love fake meat! But I tend to like fake meat that I order in restaurants, not fake meat that comes in a package.

I agree-- people claim that it is so expensive but I mainly eat a diet of organic whole grains, veggies and proteins from the local health food store and I find it to be much cheaper than the kinds of foods I can buy from the regular chain grocery. Dinner often costs me less than a dollar a day.

I think it's hard to completely adjust your lifestyle without any markers of how easy or hard it's going to be.

in terms of strategies, your dad's is dead-on: find stuff you like, even if it's restricted, eat the stuff you like/can eat, bam! It would be really frustrating to me to start a new thing and not be able to cook/spend time cooking researching and actually eating. (that's a struggle - with half-hour lunches and hour-commutes each way, your time at home to relax, cook, research, etc is limited.)

still, it's awesome that your parents are doing this.

if I were to go vegan/vegetarian, I wouldn't have the first clue how to start: I haven't heard of half the stuff you all are talking about. and the stuff I have heard of? (eg tempeh) I'm not sure what it is (vegetable? something like a tofu paste? I'm lost).

kudos though. :)

Tempeh is a fermented soy product, which sometimes also has grains or bits of vegetable added in. I like it a lot more than tofu, as I find it more flavorful and it has a more interesting texture. Sometimes when it's been marinated and seasoned, it's also used as a bacon substitute--since it can be fried somewhat crispy.

Seitan is made from gluten. If you've ever gotten vegetarian "chicken" or "beef" at a Chinese restaurant, you may well have been eating seitan. It's very rich in protein, and it's got a chewy texture.

ah ha! things vegans know!

thanks for the splainin. :)

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