An irreverent look at motherhood and family life in a new state of normal.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Healthy Doesn't Have to Be Icky

My mother-in-law is here. She is a vegan. Needless to say, I'm not even a vegetarian but when she's here (especially when Mommy is preoccupied with the kiddos) she does alot of the cooking, cleaning and whatever. Now, whether she is doing the cooking or not, she has never made me feel like I have to be a vegan or cook vegan food for her but she is my guest and I feel a certain obligation to at least provide some of her normal foods so she doesn't waste away to nothing. I have discovered a few things about healthy/vegan living:
1. You don't know it's vegan if no one tells you. I make "vegan" fajitas and they are just that way. I didn't intend to make them that way. I just don't like to cook meat at home because I'm always worried about whether it's well done and I end up making chicken/beef/fish jerky all the time so I don't even bother. I don't really love vege-meat substitutes and they are dang expensive. I don't put cheese on fajitas because I can't taste it well and it brings up the Weight Watchers point value. The only non-vegan thing I may sometimes have on fajitas is sour cream.

2. When you fake it, people know. If you try to make vegan Mac and Cheese, you are going to fail. Mac and Cheese is a dairy based thing. You have to just make things that don't require dairy or that have very little dairy and you know you can hide the substitute. If you are making stew and it calls for chicken, just leave it out. If you are making a baked product and it calls for butter, use the sub and don't tell anyone. It's just easier not to try and make a tofurkey that is going to taste like sawdust and everyone knows you are faking it.

3. FRESH STUFF IS BEST! If you can get fresh avocado and make it into a spread and put it on your sandwich so it's not dry, you are really doing good. If you can get fruit and make a nice salad, no one is going to complain. Just know that it's going to be more expensive but you are going to live longer.

I am not going vegan. I'm not even going vegetarian but I know that when I am around people who are, it's not going to be a problem because I know how to cook stuff that will make us both happy. I just can't give up my twice a year steak. I am addicted but I do learn alot from those who are stronger than me.

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