Eating Less Meat For Completely Selfish Reasons

If we must be technical: when I say "vegetarian" here I mean "ovo-lacto-vegetarian", a.k.a. everything goes except body parts.The fleshly transgressions are inevitably for getting Asian food with my Asian-American friends, which I have not come to a resolution on yet because the literally killer combo of cultural connection and delicious nostalgia seems to be great at overriding my capability to say no to things. The non-fleshly vegan transgressions are mostly butter and cheese.

My selfish reasons to eat less meat

Meat spoils 10x+ faster than non-meat

for gratuitous aesthetic purposes, here is a pastiche of autumn/winter fruits, featuring the one true fruit I salivate in anticipation of until mid-November each year, persimmons. (try fuyu persimmons first; hachiya persimmons are optimized for baking.)

Meat is more expensive

Fruits & vegetables make you feel fuller for longer

Cooking without meat is so much faster and easier

roasted cauliflower via how to roast fall & winter vegetables | the food lab

Vegetables offer SO MUCH VARIETY

roasted carrots with black sesame dressing might be my favorite easy vegetable right now

“Vegetarian” includes carbs and butter ;)

Hot tips

Prioritize deliciousness

crash hot potatoes | pioneer woman
Salt Fat Acid Heat (Samin Nosrat)

Meat awareness

diagram by daiyi on the simplicity of going vegetarian —the vegetarian foodspace is more similar to the omnivorous foodspace than you might think, the only difference is literal flesh & bone

Nutritional balance

how to use red chard | julie yoon

Helpful cooking weapons

japanese sweet potatoes with a bit of salt and butter are a truly luscious, chestnutty, hearty miracle for any occasion, be it snacks, meals, or potlucks. photo via bonappetit

Be shameless

Collect inspiration

pile of tasty tropical fruit via Honolulu Magazine
  • Veggie Galaxy menu — my favorite diner and incidentally vegetarian restaurant all in one, with beer-battered onion rings so hearty I daydream about them when I’m far away. This place is my top pick for getting dinner with a consummate meat lover.
  • Serious Eats — “Easiest Ever” (only 4 ingredients allowed)
    This category isn’t strictly vegetarian, but like me, 90%+ of it is accidentally vegetarian…because veggies are easy.
  • Southeast Asian flavor profiles. Even though a lot of dishes traditionally use meat, the flavor profiles actually make tofu taste amazing, unlike the way American health food uses tofu. Particular personal favorites include spicy Vietnamese eggplants and every kind of Thai curry.
  • Mexi-cali food
  • Salvadorean food, especially pupusas
  • Madrones, or fried ripe plantains, are literally candy
  • Beets are also candy
  • The Food Lab — Vegan Month
    Labor-intensive, but tasty experiments in vegan cooking. I haven’t made specific recipes from this because my favorite vegan food is easy, accidental vegan food, but perhaps other people will enjoy this!




autotelic polymath with an overwhelming compulsion to reverse engineer things I’ve never tried before

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