(Pictured above: bbq-style tofu.)
If you've glanced at the catagories on the sidebar you may have noticed the catagory "veganarian". A bit of laziness on my part (no apologies, remember?), the word popped into my head the other day because I got tired of the unwieldiness of "vegan/vegetarian" "vegan or vegetarian" etc. Hence, "veganarian" as a placeholder term to indicate recipes and articles that concern the overarching practice and concept of a meatless grain-and-vegetable based diet. I think it's a useful word: rolls rather easily off the tongue (mine, at any rate) can be a noun or an adjective: "veganarian" "veganarism"; and best of all, the pronunciation can be altered in speech to indicate the degree or intensity of one's vegan-committment: "veh-juh-NAIR-ian" or "VEE-gan-air-ian".
Full disclosure: I am still an ominivore. (As anyone who has come to the co-op on Saturdays and seen me serving up samples of Four Mile River Farm beef and pork, and enjoying a few nibbles myself) can attest. But I consider myself "vegan-curious", and find myself leaning in that direction more and more often. Certainly, working as a Produce Team Associate at Fiddleheads has pushed me in that direction, as has economics, aging and sundry health concerns.
My impressions on the subject, from readings, from personal conversations and practice in the kitchen, leads me to believe that it's not so much an either-or thing, but rather a continuum, a sliding scale of choices and possibilities, regarding how little or how much to incorporate any animal products in one's diet (milk, eggs, honey) and life (leather). I know for myself, leaving off sugar and milk from from oatmeal had to come before putting tempeh in the wok. Trying to divvy things up too precisely seems tiresome, and misses the point.
I am nonetheless confident (or foolish) enough to predict that the vegetable-and-grain-based diet, the diet that is still the primary one for most of the world's people's and has been throughout history, is becoming more and more "mainstream" here in the U.S. Call it a hunch, call it fact, call it initution, call it what you will. Certainly many of the co-op members and customers are vegan, vegetarian, or like me, vegan-curious. And the more I meals I make without dairy products and without meat, the more I realize, it really isn't that difficult, or daunting.
Now a raw diet? That's another story. That I still find daunting...at the moment. Perhaps tomorrow...
(Oh, and what did my pajamas have to do with any of this? Absolutely nothing, of course. Don't be silly.)
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Text and photos copyright 2011-2013 Janice Janostak unless otherwise noted. All rights reserved.