Vegan recipes, lifestyle, and culture presented by the Feast food community.
At the beginning of 2019, I switched to a vegan diet. No longer would I consume the produce of innocent animals. It was a long time coming. For the last eight years, I called myself a flexitarian, which was a polite way of saying I tried my best to follow a vegetarian diet. I’d occasionally succumb to the temptations of the flesh and feel guilt-ridden for days afterward.
I can't, I can't cut out meat, cheese, EGGS! I love eggs! It would be too hard and I don't want to set myself up to fail! Before I began my new Vegan journey, I would say this or some variation of it, all day long. I could not visualize myself, making such drastic changes and being successful. I had been indoctrinated with the way I was eating, I, a young black girl from Chicago, was taught to eat while you could! Food was scarce when I was coming up, so nothing went to waste, our left overs, had left overs, and we were told to clean our plates! People were starving all over the world and we were lucky to have this meal. I knew the kindness of strangers, before I knew what the word "stranger" meant.
For most, the idea of going Vegan seems almost impossible. It is met with questions like: ‘But what will I do without cheese/bacon/milk?’
Thinking about going vegan? Intrigued by where to begin? Or looking for creative ways to expand your vegan culinary skills?
One of the most important things for me after going Vegan was to ensure I wasn't missing out on anything. Snickers were absolutely one of those things, so of course, I had to find a way to make a dairy-free version. I chose the most natural ingredients I could find to mimic the flavours of a Snickers bar, and they unintentionally turned out gluten-free, so it just keeps getting better!
Vegetarianism and veganism are two lifestyles that aren't typically or thoroughly thought about, and that's a problem. I know... the scary V words. Growing up, my parents put meat on my plate just about everyday. I had never thought about it until just recently. As one grows up, they grow apart from traditions they were used to and lifestyles that they once pursued. When you're growing up, you step back and look at the world with a realistic point of view. Riding your bike turns into driving to high school, television shows with your parents turn into hour long talks about your future, reality strikes and you're not a kid anymore. I think while one is maturing, it is critical to think about your diet. What are you putting into your body? Animals. The same things that you lay in bed with, the same creatures that you play ball with and walk in the park beside. Think about that.
As veganism and vegetarianism continues to rise and grow in popularity, replacing the consumption of meat with near identical plant-based alternatives that are not only healthier, but much better for the environment and, in my experience, most of the time taste better, one question continues to come to my mind.
Pull up a chair. Let’s jump straight in with an epic example of lifestyle contrast: Me in 2013: Sitting down to a Domino's meat feast-type pizza once a week Roast lamb is a must for every Christmas dinner Cheese makes any meal better (cue Caroline’s special melted cheese in instant noodles extravaganza) A meal is also just a bit boring without some kind of meat or fish in it, right? It’s kind of empty. How am I meant to feel full? Yes, I was ‘fit’ (I had just run a 10k race in this photo), but I wasn’t fueling my body well or performing as well as I could have
From meatless meatballs to crispy tenders, Gardein blesses vegans with some of the tastiest meatless meats around. Their products have become a staple in my house, especially when I want to make my version of vegan Puerto Rican Pastelillos!
So, you are thinking of going totally vegan. You've been having second thoughts about the environment, saving our planet, your health, feeling sorry for the animals, your weight, etc.
Two and a half years ago, I transitioned to a Vegan lifestyle after being vegetarian for 28 years and it was something I’d wanted to do for a while but never thought I could. I had absolutely no understanding of what a Vegan diet looked like. I always thought it seemed so ‘extreme.’ I had already omitted meat and fish from my diet and I wondered if I took dairy away, what would be left? How would I survive on a few vegetables?
I decided to go vegan when I got home from a summer abroad and realized I had gained 10 pounds. I have been vegetarian since I was in 10th grade, and before traveling I had been off dairy for six months to see if it would help clear my skin. (Hint: it did.) But I was going to the land of pizza and cappuccinos... so I went from zero to 1,000 in dairyland as soon as I got off the plane. It was six weeks of salty, creamy, sugary bliss. Then I got home, returned to reality, stepped on a scale, and took a long look in the mirror at the bumps all over my face. It was time to change. And since then, I have never looked back.