The Chipotle CEO said the other day that he’d never seen anything as disgusting as McDonald’s chicken farm. No details, though. The experience was the catalyst behind his move to make ingredients organic, sustainable, locally sourced, “whenever possible.”
It’s true that these massive meat and poultry farms have had to clean up their acts to a certain degree, thanks to national push against cruel conditions for animals raised for food. But a free-range chicken still ends up on the plate in front of us.
I don’t believe any animal should live in horrific conditions or be cruelly treated.
I wouldn’t eat veal or fois gras on a bet.
I am convinced intellectually that a vegetarian diet is healthier.
I do not like the idea of slaughtering animals for food when we have a perfectly reasonable and good-for-us alternative.
We eat more vegetarian meals than ever before, to be honest.
And yet, old habits die hard and as much as I’d like to, it’s difficult for me to make the transition to full vegetarian. I love a good steak, as long as I don’t have to think of cattle being slaughtered. A perfectly-roasted chicken is a thing of beauty, to me. But chicken farms sound awful.
As much as I like animal proteins, turning vegetarian is my goal. (Vegan might be a bridge too far for a newbie, but I can envision it one day.)
Part of it is that when you’ve been cooking one way for 40 years, a vegetarian diet takes more prep time and more imagination. Home cooks really have to think ahead, rather than just pull something out of the freezer, add some spices and cook. Also, I do not eat any seeds at all to avoid diverticulitis attacks, so that eliminates berries, tomatoes unless I skin and de-seed, and many other fruits and veggies. Same with nuts and seeds, which eliminates a good source of protein. It’s a challenge.
I was going to say that my husband wouldn’t embrace a full vegetarian diet, but I just asked him and got this response: “I never thought I would say this, but I could, crazy as it sounds.”
It’s obvious that we’re moving in that direction, slowly.
Have you made the switch? How did you do it? And what was it like for you? What do you wish you knew when you made the transition to vegetarianism?
I’m looking for a good cookbook or website with simple but yummy vegetarian recipes to make the transition easier. Got suggestions? I’ll take them. Feel free to share your favorite vegetarian recipe, too, in links or just written out.
I appreciate any ideas or encouragement you have.