Ever considered becoming vegetarian but cannot bear to part with meat forever? Who says you have to go cold turkey. In her latest column, Lisa Fuchs talks about weekday vegetarianism.
For some reason we like to put labels on others and on ourselves. Especially when it comes to food and diets. You are either a meat eater, or vegetarian. Maybe even vegan.
You might have heard of the petition 478 here in Luxembourg calling on the government to publicly support and promote vegetarian and vegan nutrition.
It’s a great initiative, and I hope it is successful. Especially thinking of how Luxembourg now is labeled one of the top meat consumers of the world.
For all of us meat lovers out there though, as much as we accept everybody else’s choices, becoming a vegetarian is such a big commitment. Right?
I’m sure most of you are aware of the environmental issue of eating meat. Meat farms are one of the largest producers of greenhouse gases and in developed countries, they are the biggest source of water pollution.
Meat production is a bigger environmental problem than all transport worldwide combined. Cars, trucks, airplanes, ships – you name it. And here we are, feeling bad about booking that flight ticket to Thailand.
Throw in the cruelty factor of all the factory farmed animals produced only for our pleasure and the waste of lives counting all the animals killed and dumped right after birth because they have the wrong sex.
And guys – we are talking males here, especially baby chicks and baby goats.
Every now and then you find yourself watching a secretly filmed clip, showing the awful conditions under which these animals are raised and maybe you swear to never buy meat again.
This lasts for a day or two and then you are probably back to bacon and coque au vin. I hear you. And I understand! Becoming a vegetarian is such a big step.
And here we are with the labels again. You either eat meat – or you don’t.
This is where Graham Hill comes in. He is the founder of a website called TreeHugger.com where he and others write about minimalism, sustainability and environmental issues. Graham Hill did a TED talk in 2010, seen over 1.5 million times.
Struggling with the same issue as most of us, his solution was to become a weekday vegetarian. I admit – this could be seen as just another label, but it’s quite a clever idea.
Exactly as the name suggests, you eat vegetarian food Monday to Friday and come the weekend you can feel free to cook that roast if you want to.
The concept is brilliant already as it is, but there is more. Eating meat only two days a week actually saves you money. Money, that you can put towards buying good quality, organic vegetables and meat from local farms.
Thus, saving on transport, reducing cruelty and keeping our local farmers happy at the same time as feeding your body a more natural product. I’ve said it before – We need to start loving our farmers, and this is a great way!
I became a weekday vegetarian last year and my teenage son joined me a few weeks back. We’re not strict about the actual days, but tend to eat meat less than two times a week. And you know what – it’s not so bad actually!
If you need inspiration when it comes to recipes check out a new movement based in Luxembourg, called Orla collective. They are a friendly bunch who write (in English) about sustainability, post recipes and even arrange workshops where you can learn first hand how to cook meat free delicious meals.
A quick and delicious vegetarian meal to start with would be the classic pasta with pesto. If you switch the pasta to carrot and zucchini you have a very healthy alternative.
Just slice the vegetables thin, using a peeler or a julienne slicer. Boil in salted water for 2-3 minutes and serve with the pesto.
Lisa Fuchs is the author of “Delicious grain free baking”. She also writes about healthy and creative baking, under the name Liesel on her blog: lieselathome.com
You will never find sugar or gluten in any of her recipes and most of them are also lactose free.
This post first appeared in the Luxembourg Wort English – luxtimes.lu