About two weeks ago I watched Vegucated on Netflix and it is safe to say it broke my heart. I found myself sobbing in my bed at 02:30am and thinking do I really need to eat meat? I am the only person in my family who does not eat meat and I do not find it overly difficult.
Of course there are some foods that remind me of good times that I will miss eating but it is all about finding vegetarian substitutes for these foods and availing of the growing vegetarian/vegan market. I have thought of going fully vegan and just do not think that it is for me now. I rarely drink milk as it is, preferring soy and almond milk but I do eat a fair bit of cheese and yogurt and I also still eat some fish.
I don’t think it is fair of others to judge vegetarians/pescatarians on their diets, saying they do it ‘wrong’. I am doing what is working for me and I am not eating meat, isn’t that what is important? On this vegetarian journey I have begun experimenting with foods and my first trial was on a bolognese, one of my favourites and most loved meals.
How I do it:
I make all my own pasta sauces, there is so much unnecessary sugars added to store bought sauces that it works out cheaper and healthier to just make my own.
I add all this to a pot and let it cook away on the stove and I add spices to taste, no certain measurements. I usually use oregano, thyme, cumin, turmeric, garlic, cajun, paprika to name a few and I come out with a sauce that tastes just as good, if not better than a store bought one.
Obviously as a vegetarian I needed something to replace the mince, I used Quorn Mince which I purchased from Dunnes Stores for about €2.49. With this I made enough for myself with a large amount leftover that I will use to make burritos with.
I cooked it in a pot with some olive oil until it resembled a normal cooked mince consistency, it took about 8 minutes but I then added it to the sauce and left it for another maybe 8 minutes to cook further.
It looks so like a normal bolognese it is quite scary and while of course it does not taste exactly like mince, it tastes great in my opinion and I did not feel disappointed at all. I paired it with pasta, some garlic bread and sprinkled some parmesan on top.
How yummy does that look?
While I have become a vegetarian on a moral basis, it is a great way for me to get back into healthy eating and of course I do not eat meat replacement products everyday, I love a good vegetable stir fry also. You guys should definitely try it out, even just to taste what it is like to not eat meat. You do not have to be a fully committed vegan to make a difference in animals lives!
I hope to have more recipes in the future, I love playing around with food and discovering new healthy things to share with others. Hope you enjoyed!