I’ve always been deeply suspicious of vegetarians and vegans. In restaurants they’re a pain in the butt, with all their special requests and demands. I have tried to be empathetic, but really, who willingly gives up all kind of animal product? Don’t they know how delicious a medium rare steak is? or a slice of Manchego cheese from Spain? I’m also guilty of being inconsiderate towards them, like the time we invited our vegetarian friend to eat at Animal Restaurant! We didn’t do it on purpose, we completely forgot. Luckily they had a couple of vegetarian options.
I recently watched the documentary Forks over Knives and read the book the China Study. I also just read a really good blog that talks about the myths of nutrition. All this reading has made me more aware of the food I eat or should be eating and what I feed my family. So as an offering for Lent we will be eating a whole foods plant based diet. This means no animal product of any kind, and no processed foods. How is this different from veganism? We are making this choice for health reasons not political ones. We love animals, but we also love to eat them. This has never been an issue for us, but when you read things like:
“Those who eat more whole, plant-based foods not only have lower cholesterol levels, but have less heart disease.”
“That a diet high in animal protein gives rise to cancer cells, and allows more rapid growth of tumors once they have officially formed.”
“Multiple sclerosis has been linked to animal food consumption, especially dairy consumption.”
“A whole-foods plant based diet can protect against and even treat a wide variety of chronic diseases.” (The China Study by T. Colin Campbell & Thomas M. Campbell II)
……..you can’t just continue to eat the way you did before. Will this eventually lead to a full conversion to the other side? I don’t think so, but it is yet to be seen.
How do we eat now? A week of dinners looks like this:
Monday: Pan roasted Steelhead Trout, Roasted Baby Fennel & Cherry Toamtoes, Celery Root Mash.
Tuesday: Eat out (this week we had pizza)
Wednesday: Turkey Chilli, Cornbread & Black Bean, Corn & Tomato Salad in a lime-avocado dressing.
Thursday: Roasted Chicken, Baked Sweet Potatoes, Kale braised with garlic, onion, apple cider, chicken stock, and almonds.
Friday: Whole wheat pasta, olive oil, oven dried cherry tomatoes, sugar snap peas, garlic, red pepper flakes, & mushrooms.
Saturday: Shredded Chicken Tinga, Avocado, Salsa, Tortillas & Beans.
Sunday: Leftover day
I buy most of our produce at the local farmer’s market, and cook almost everything from scratch. I’m not obsessive about buying organic, I focus on buying mostly local. I spend about $120-$140 a week on groceries for a family of 3. We drink water with our meals and enjoy wine, cocktails and beer whenever possible. When it comes to processed food we buy staples like bread, crackers, tortillas & peanut butter. We also indulge in the occasional donut, muffin, cookie, cake, and ice cream. We love ice cream!
When we eat out it’s another story. We are professional cooks, so we eat everything and anything we can get our hands on. We take it upon ourselves to taste as much as possible. Bottom line is, we enjoy eating and cooking, it’s our job and our passion.
I will be posting recipes here and pictures of what we’re cooking or eating on Pinterest, you can find us as Dora Stone. For now here is a recipe for whole wheat bread, it’s easy to make and contains no additives, preservatives or high fructose corn syrup like your typical grocery store sandwich bread.
The Recipe: Whole Wheat Honey Bread
This bread is hearty and soft with a touch of sweet. Perfect for sandwiches and toast.
Whole Wheat Honey Bread
- 2 ¼ cups Whole wheat flour
- ½ cup Wheat bran
- ½ cup Oat flour
- 1 tbsp. Active dry yeast 1 pkg
- 1 tsp. Salt, kosher
- 1 tbsp. Oil, canola
- 1/8 cup Honey
- 1 ¾ cups Water warm
- In a large bowl combine the oil, active dry yeast, water, and honey. Stir and set aside for 5 to 6 minutes or until the mixture bubbles and foams.
- Spray 1- 8×5 loaf pan with cooking spray.
- In a medium bowl combine the flours and the salt. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients 1 cup at a time, mixing with a wooden spoon until all flour is incorporated.
- Turn the dough out into a lightly floured surface and knead for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic. To test if the dough, insert your thumb into the dough for 5 seconds. If your thumb comes out clean the dough is ready.
- Preheat oven to 350F. Shape the dough into a loaf and place in the pan. Cover with a dish towel and let rise until it doubles in size, for about 1 hour.
- Bake bread on the center rack of the oven for about 40 min. or until the crust is golden brown and the bread sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom.
- Cool completely on a rack before slicing.
To make this vegan, you can substitute the honey for agave nectar