Friday, October 03, 2008

Progress being a Veggie

In a comment to my Marwell post Tim asked for an update on my Vegetarianism. Well the good news is I am still a Vegetarian. I do not eat meat. This is not a fad, this is a life choice.

Hmm, you might think I get this a lot :D

As a general rule I have not had too many problems with the switch. Cooking at home is no more difficult than it was before (which is hard, more on that later), eating out is generally not a problem, and my friends have been very supportive. I did almost order a Chicken Dansak as a takeaway a week or two ago, but recovered well.

The main challenge is that a group of us from work go out for pub lunch once or twice a month and that is a challenge. Pubs seem to have problems with having vegetarian menus. Typically they are good a fish dishes (but that is no good as I do not eat fish), but most of the veggie dishes contain melted cheese :(. So far they have all been very good and have either removed the cheese (one seemed a little put out, but the menu did not indicate that cheese might be on the pasta dish; it was not even listed as a pasta bake), and failing that I have had success at ordering cheese sandwiches even when it is not on the menu (although I should probably ask if the cheese is vegetarian).

So what is it I find difficult about cooking? Well motivation is one issue, but a greater one is that it is simply hard to cook when you are cooking for 1. Rolls come in packs of 4, so do veggie burgers (this is enough for two means perhaps), but the rolls go off if not eaten quickly. When I cook properly (burgers is not properly), which is once a week I make enough for a few days, so I live from reheating.

Next week I am off to Oxford for a course, so my next challenge will be to see if I can survive a week at Oxford not eating meat. I might have to go and get sandwiches from the local Sainsburys rather than eating the provided food. Oh well at least D&G will be there for me.



Anonymous said...

I'd recommend a jacket potato from one of the many Oxford kebab vans.

Alasdair Nottingham said...

Hmm, Kebab Van food. Nice.


Tim said...

Thanks for the update! I hope you're not letting Mike or anyone else put you off. We went out for lunch yesterday to a well known chain here called Moxies. They serve standard Pacific North West style stuff but I noticed hardly any veggie things. Perhaps one or none per menu section. e.g. not one of their salads was veggie! And their only veggie pasta was a chicken one with the chicken removed! They should be doing better. Oh well, we still allow ourselves to eat meet a couple of times a week, so it became one of those times!

Alasdair Nottingham said...


The people who have been least supportive have been my family, and they have been supportive. The only reason they are least, is they were worried I would die of malnutrition.

I am dreading my next trip to the U.S. they have a similar level of support for veggie. Generally the UK is very good (excepting pubs which have bad menus, but are often good at providing food off the menu).


Joe said...

Good work—well done for resisting the Chicken Dhansak!

A fairly regular staple of mine is wholewheat pitta bread. They keep well in the fridge or the freezer and are easily prepared in a toaster. Wraps are good too.

As for cooking, you don't always have to cook your food. Raw food can be better for you and save on preparation and washing up.

Alasdair Nottingham said...

The Chicken Dansak order was more of a fraudian slip than a serious order, I quickly changed the order, although I do have problems every now and then when I crave meat. Like today, I wanted a Lamb Curry and after than a Sausage Roll, the lamb curry was more related to the lack of interest in the Mousakka option.

I'm not sure about raw food. I am so used to cooking.


Sharon Moore said...

Got to your blog incidentally via IBMers...

1) cooking for 1 really *is* hard, especially when you're only in one home 3 nights a week and the other 4 (travelling for work)

2) The French don't get veggies either. My friend was at a conference in Paris and when his colleague pointed out to the waiting staff, as they tried to serve her chicken) that she was vegetarian the response was "but this is vegetarian chicken madame, it has only been fed on corn". LOL!

Alasdair Nottingham said...

Hi Sharon,

Nice to hear from you. Good story. I wish I had something similar. Being offered fish is the closest I have ever been. I think I'll have to start collecting Vegetarian anecdotes.