For me it started in high school. Music has always been a major part of my life, I was obsessed. There was this band emerging from Australia; anyone remember Silverchair? I was in love with their angst and politically driven songs. I saw a performance of them and someone had a "Meat Is Murder" sticker on their guitar. Later I found out they, or at least some of them, were vegetarian/vegan. (Check out their song "Pure Massacre".) So my best friend, also obsessed with them, and I decided to become vegetarian. It didn't last very long, it's hard to control something like that when you aren't the one doing the cooking. My mom, step-dad, and baby brother weren't interested in a major lifestyle change.
Ten years later, I saw Vegucated! My girlfriend and I share a love of documentaries and were browsing through Netflix one day and stumbled upon this major eye opener. Sure we've all seen the pamphlets and heard the stories, but this we just couldn't turn away from. We have made the decision together to go Veggie! Our New Years resolution has become to be 100% vegetarian, and vegan when we can. She's not sure she can go all the way vegan, but I think its just about finding the right products to replace the things we love. We've been eating way less meat since we saw the doc. Haven't bought any, but at family dinners we sometimes still eat poultry. She also wants to have 1 last hamburger. We've decided that we will be bringing our vegan dishes to holiday dinners with the family. There are a few people we are trying to convince to go veggie with us, perhaps we can trick them.
We went to the Twin Cities Veg Fest this past weekend and learned about more options that are out there as far as substitutes go. We loved the free samples, the GM FREE marshmallows were everyone's favorite. We listened to Suzy Sorensen's talk about compassionate eating, she was adorable and informative. We went to the Wedge Co-Op a couple weeks ago to try some new stuff. Big mistake, so expensive, Suzy recommends Trader Joe's, much cheaper. The worst part was wasting money on things we didn't like. We bought Daiya vegan cheese, gross, tastes like cardboard! The sour cream was bland too which left our vegan taco salad lacking.
I used to hate cooking, it bored me, not anymore, I actually enjoy cooking now! Also, raw meat has freaked me out my whole life, can't touch it. Never been much of a red meat or pork fan which is kind of sucking now, so many good red meat substitutes out there. Boca crumbles have become a staple at our house now, and we are going to try Teese cheese, I've heard its the best vegan cheese. My girlfriend, Ashley, is a big milk drinker but I never was. We aren't cows, so we don't need cow's milk! I've got her drinking Rice Dream now which is something we both enjoy. Cooking gets interesting as we have different, sometimes conflicting, dietary restrictions, she has Crohn's and I have arthritis. Thanks to Pinterest I have many recipes I am excited to try out. We just bought Gardein grilled "chicken" strips, had them in our stir-fry yesterday, they were okay. I'm open to suggestions on poultry substitutes!