Friday, March 29, 2013

Project Vegan

Now before you roll your eyes, snort, and move on to the next blog on your list, hear me out. This isn't as weird as it sounds, I promise!
I like animals, but not enough to go on a crusade to save them from being bacon. Sorry, but seriously. I'm doing well just to get through the day here. This is all for my own selfish benefit. Since being diagnosed as bipolar, I've been doing all I reasonably can to try to dig myself out of this mental mess. It's a fact that deficiencies in vitamins and nutrients can affect our minds, so there's no telling what things like added chemicals and antibiotics in dairy and meat are doing. If that's not a big deal to you, or you don't totally buy it, that's really ok. I'm not trying to discourage or encourage anyone one either way. I'm just sayin, here's what is working for me.
If you've wanted to try being vegan but feel overwhelmed when faced with the misery of life without cheese, just wait a second. First off, there is vegan cheese. Second off, it's not as big of a deal as you would think. Listen, I LOVE cheese. And I've only been doing this for nearly three weeks, but I haven't had a single craving for it. Or sweets, for that matter. There's something about eating completely plant-based that gives your tastes a total makeover like THAT *snap*! Well, there was this one time early on that I was craving ice cream, but I got a pint of coconut cream ice cream and ooommmmggggg I was definitely not feeling deprived.
My point is, you're talking to junk food's number one fan. So if I can deal with this, so can you. Besides the lack of naughty cravings, I'm also on my way to having pretty skin. And that's only after two weeks! I know, I'm ridiculously excited about this, I can't help it.
On the down side, this stuff can be crazy expensive. Yes, tofu as your main entree ingredient is a quarter of the cost of chicken or beef, but so far that's about all I've saved on. And I've only used tofu once anyway, in a dessert! I think once I build up a stock of all the weirdo ingredients like... arrowroot powder (? what is that i dont even....?) it won't be as expensive to maintain as it is to start out.

Well, I could babble about this for pages but I'll shutup now. And I'm not turning my blog into a pro-vegan pulpit or anything, I just wanted to share what I've been doing for the past few weeks. NOT stitching, I know. :( Gotta get back to it!


Sam said...

Funny, I went vegan 3 weeks ago, too. and cheese is my big deal. and ice cream. Are you feeling better yet? Here's my best wishers to you.

Deb said...

This makes me happy.

Jesse said...

Yes, once you get the weirdo ingredients stockpiled you can actually start saving. Also, there's a lot of up-front cost because there's a tendency to try all kinds of crazy, complex recipes, that usually are attempts to model non-vegan food (and use expensive ingredients in the process). Once you get in the groove you'll likely settle on simpler meals that are really quite inexpensive. Our staples during our 6-month Vegan Adventure were Mexican-style dishes like black bean & fresh salsa soft tacos and Indian-style dishes (chickpeas are a Godsend). Most of those meals were probably just a few dollars worth of ingredients and could feed us for a couple days.

Jesse said...

Also: We love love love Chipotle, and it's one of the better vegan restaurants if you're craving something that isn't homemade. I would get a veggie bowl with extra black beans, rice, all the salsas and guacamole. Skip the pinto beans since they're made with bacon. Guac is free on veggie bowls. Also just ask for a side of tortilla(s) - they're free with the bowl and you can make your own burrito bites at home. One bowl = two meals easily, for less than $6.

Taco Bell has a couple nice vegan options. They have a black bean burrito that's awesome, hold the cheese and SC though (or replace with guac). The 7-layer burrito is great too, again, hold the cheese.