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Lent...I'm such a carnivore!

Friday, February 24, 2012

So usually when lent rolls around I tend not to be very particular about giving something up, since I wasn't really raised with that tradition. However, this year I've really been needing a spiritual kick in the pants, and my church challenged us to go on a "Daniel Fast", which is essentially a vegan diet without processed foods (including things like pasta or bread). That's just way too hard core for me! Instead, I decided to go pescatarian--vegetarian but I'm still going to eat seafood.

it's day 2 and this alone has been hard enough! Yesterday my dad and I ate smashed potatoes with parsley from the garden, garlic, lemon, and parmesan cheese, and then mushroom ravioli. Delish! Today, I spent all day thinking about what we were going to eat for dinner. For some reason salads or veggie stirfries just don't sound appealing to me, even though I love the veggie stirfries from the food trucks at school. Most meals that I came up with just sounded so bare...because meat was missing. Mind you, I probably wasn't very creative, but I'd think of something, and my brain would go..."huh. That doesn't sound satisfying. I wonder why....oh! it's because it's missing meat, mm, MEAT!"

I've grown up as a meat and potatoes (more like meat and rice) kinda girl all my life. Meat was the star of the show. Sure, we had vegetables at every meal, but they were like the sidekick that comes along for the ride, or the little sister that you have to include at your birthday party because it's the right thing to do. I know I've had vegetarian meals in the past, salads, soups, quiches, omelettes, stirfries, summer rolls, and seafood for crying out loud, but for some reason looking forward into 40 days of meatless meals just feels like I need a ticker to count down to that last meal. To be honest, it feels a little crazy! And in my head, I don't really think it should be that hard, but my stomach keeps muttering and complaining about how difficult this will be.

After just TWO DAYS in to this challenge, I'm finding out just how meat-centric my diet really is. Even sandwiches for lunch have to be revamped since turkey is out of the picture. And no bacon and eggs for breakfast anymore! (I don't even eat bacon and eggs that often, but just the knowledge that I CANT have it makes it feel so much more like deprivation!)

My brain is so disturbing and strange! haha But I'm glad I'm doing this--I'm already learning a lot about how I see food and sustenance, and I can't wait for a healthier outlook where veggies and fruits (not beef) are what's for dinner.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Good luck! This is a great challenge not just for your physical health but for your spiritual health as well.

    Three of my fav meatless options:

    - Mashed black beans with salsa spread on a tortilla with shredded chese
    - Goat cheese and walnuts w/ spring mix in sandwich or wrap
    - Sweet potato and lentil curry - I made this recipe here: http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/reci
    I know you can do it!!
    1812 days ago
  • HOPE541
    Try meat substitutes, if cooked well, they actually taste good. The university I went to, didn't have meat except fish but they cooked the substitutes well (sometimes), lol. You can do it!
    1819 days ago
    Omg, tell me about it! I would absolutely love to go vegetarian or pescatarian one day, but it's sooooo hard to think about not having meat in my life! The thought of never having a hamburger or grilled chicken ever again... D: I think I've come to the point where I really want to try to limit the amount of meat I eat, maybe try for a couple vegetarian meals a week, but I think that's all I can do! Good luck with the process, I know you can do it! Just think of all the yummy seafood that you have the choice of eating.. shrimp goes great in stirfry! :)
    1820 days ago
    I love the Morningstar products. The breakfast sausage patties and mini corn dogs are my favorite! I've also made chickpea "burgers." They were good, but the recipe could use some tweaking. I also like meatless chili and white bean chili.

    I'm going to try tofu at some point. My brother-in-law is a vegetarian, so when we visit my hubby's parents for holidays, there's always something for him. He (and his wife) both eat a lot of organic products as well. I really would like to clean up my diet some!
    1820 days ago
    Try the meat substitutes! They might make it a bit easier since it's kind of like meat.
    1822 days ago
    Four sandwich ideas: 1) Sliced tomatoes, cucumbers, sardines with mustard on rye
    2) Sliced beets, bleu cheese, soft lettuce, horseradish on pumpernickel
    3) Grilled/sauteed eggplant, tomato, smoked mozzarella, chopped fresh basil on italian or a hero roll
    4) Mixed greens, creamy vinaigrette, avocado, monterey jack on sourdough or wheat.

    Tips for overcoming a meat-centric diet: smoked fish and smoked cheeses give a great meaty flavor to meals. VARIETY! Try a mixture of beans (you can buy a 16 bean mix at the grocery store!) or a mixture of grains for soups, cold salads and casseroles. BULGAR! Adding bulgar to a soup or a tomato sauce gives it a meatiness, mushrooms can have a similar effect.
    1822 days ago
  • MISSG180
    This is why I can never diet. As soon as you tell me I can't have something, I completely obsess over it! Weight Watchers and their point system makse me freak out.

    Good luck with your Lenten progress!
    1822 days ago
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