Nick F. Stanley

Ramblings of a New Author

Eating Vegetarian for a Week

I just spent the last week eating vegetarian. I don’t have any immediate moral qualms about eating meat, though I’ve debated how I feel about eating meat. On the one hand, meat does come from living and conscious animals. On the other hand, it’s perfectly natural for animals to eat other animals in nature, and part of how we survive. Are we supposed to rise above this as people, or are we supposed to embrace it as part of who we are? Frankly, I don’t know, and that’s about as much as I’m going to wax philosophical on this one. What’s more important today is discussing how easy it was.

And let me tell you, for me, it was easy. It would be hard to do it forever; fish at Christmas is big in my family, as is pasta with meatballs and sausage, and I don’t intend to give these up. But for a week? Although meat is a major part of some meals for me, it’s not integral to every meal. There’s lots of good fruits and veggies out there, after all, and it pays to get to know them better. Plus, if we’re being honest, it’s cheap too.

So, how easy and cheap was it? Well, it was 30 dollars cheap (and would have been 20 dollars cheap if I didn’t opt to spring for some chicken substitute for a night). This covered lettuce, cucumbers, and carrots for salads. Mixed peppers, onions, mushrooms, frozen strawberries, and beans. And a few other items I may remember as I go over things.

So first thing’s first. I ate a lot of salad. Every lunch was salad, in fact. Because I love salads. Just toss the veggies together, add some italian dressing or, if you prefer, oil, vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper, and done. I also did two salads for dinner; for these, I tossed in some chick peas as well to make them a bit more filling. Can’t go to bed hungry after all.

I also cooked up some mixed veggies. Onions, peppers, and mushrooms, fried up in butter, with some salt and pepper is also easy to put together, and quite tasty.  Another night, I did brocolli, onion, and peppers, with a stir fry sauce, and it was just as easy to throw together and enjoy.

Now, I also mentioned some fake chicken above. I was craving some pasta, and I wanted something meaty, so I made a sauce with the chicken substitute, peppers, and tomatoes, and that easily hit the spot. I can’t imagine I’ll use the fake chicken again, as it would really be better to use the real deal or just go without, but it was worth trying to see how it was and stick to remaining vegetarian for the week.

You may wonder about breakfast though. To be honest, I’m terrible about eating breakfast, so I skipped it most mornings. But when I didn’t, strawberries, grapes, and oranges were my go to options.

As I said above, I wouldn’t eat like this forever. But most of these meals are easy to put together: just grab the veggies you want and mix them together. Then fry them in butter or oil, eat them raw with salad dressing, or toss them in a sauce of some kind and you have something to eat in about ten minutes. It’s definitely convenient, fills you up plenty if you remember to add beans when needed, and is cheap if you don’t splurge on the meat substitutes. It also allows you to buy a bunch of whatever vegetables are on sale and throw together what you like, so there’s plenty of variety, though it wouldn’t seem so at first.

Tomorrow though, I think I’m going to go for some orange chicken or some tacos.

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