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Health & Nutrition
Seasoned vegetarians...how to get through a slump? en>fr fr>en
By Kekoamember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 8863, member since Sat Jul 19, 2003
On Sun Apr 15, 2012 01:59 PM

I've been a vegetarian for almost three years. I eat a pretty balanced diet (far from perfect, but WAY better than I ate as an omni and getting better all the time), so I definitely get enough protein, fruits, veg, etc.

However...I'm in a slump. I don't want to eat meat, and I don't plan on it, but I'm just...sick of it all. Food bores me. I don't really have the time or money to do a whole lot of experimentation with my recipes.

Additionally, I've been working hard to get in shape so that eliminates a lot of the foods I've grown to love, that are yummy but carby. Most days, it's protein shake, scrambled eggs, quinoa and veggies, salad, homemade smoothies, etc. Healthy, but boring.

I just find myself in this weird place; I'm totally disillusioned about the health benefits of being a vegetarian, the ethical benefits...but beyond the occasional dream about whoppers from BK, I have no actual desire to change my diet. Blah. Tell me it passes? How do I find good recipes I can be relatively confident I'll like? Pinterest has a few things I've liked, but nothing WOW. Actual cookbooks/recipes are totally overwhelming.

7 Replies to Seasoned vegetarians...how to get through a slump?

re: Seasoned vegetarians...how to get through a slump? en>fr fr>en
By YumYumDoughnutPremium member Comments: 7993, member since Sat Jul 10, 2004
On Sun Apr 15, 2012 02:05 PM
A bunch of my extended family are vegetarians. What they do is, take the recipe of anything that is chicken based, and replace it with firm tofu. Once the tofu is cooked into a stirfry for example, it takes pretty good.

Im sorry that I can't help you out as much :( Have you tried Morning Star? The people at my old church ate that stuff ALL the time. Super high in sodium but vegetarian.

www.morningstarfarms.com . . .
re: Seasoned vegetarians...how to get through a slump? en>fr fr>en
By Odessamember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 11218, member since Tue Feb 26, 2002
On Sun Apr 15, 2012 03:51 PM
This isn't a "I'm sick of being a vegetarian" issue. It's a "ugh I can't think of anything I want to cook" issue. I have those a lot, and I've been vegetarian for over five years now.

Being bored with food and cooking is fairly directly correlated to how busy you are in other aspects of your life. I know that when I am really busy, cooking falls by the wayside and I just default to toasted sandwiches and soup and spaghetti bolognese (made with delicious Quorn mince and a tin of lentils). When I am feel balanced and in control of my life I am making ratatouille and asparagus and basil carbonara, and jambalaya.

But when we're busy, and we just want to grab a cheap, quick thing to eat, we can't just stop off on the way home and get a Quarter Pounder or a Whopper (this, of course, has it's benefits too), so we get home, sit down, open the fridge a hundred times, and then end up eating spaghetti with store-bought pesto dumped on top.

I became vegetarian very suddenly. I had never really been that into meat - I'd eat it when I was out but rarely cooked with it at home because handling raw meat grossed me right out, but I gave up eating meat once and for all after watching a video on the Animals Australia website about factory farmed pigs. It broke my heart, I cried for hours and that day I gave up meat and meat by-products (stock, rennet, gelatine) and never went back. So for me, giving up meat happened fast, and was an immediate response to something that shocked me to my core, so I've never felt disillusioned about the ethical reasons for it - there's this one pig I saw in that video who's face I can still see sometimes...I can't believe I EVER thought it was OK to eat animals. If you're feeling disillusioned with the ethical reasons, a few minutes with Animals Australia should set you straight :)

But I get bored with food. I get annoyed that I can't easily get fast food on nights I am busy or lazy. I have my repertoire of things that I like, and I cook them often. But I get sick of having to try new things. I get sick of ingredients for my meals being pricier than ingredients for non-vegetarian meals. I get sick of having to inspect the packaging of everything from cheese to hot cross buns to tinned soup to potato chips to find out if they contain rennet, gelatine, or "chicken fat". I get annoyed that I have to think up something good to cook every night, because I can't just go and buy three kilograms of mince meat and keep it in the freezer to throw together emergency spaghetti bolognese or cottage pie.

Part of the problem is all the choice. Back in the old days, there was one vegetarian cook-book for every thousand regular cook-books, but now we've got the WHOLE INTERNET and it can be impossible to know what's good. Putting "Vegetarian recipes" into Google provides us with more results than we know what to do with, and filtering out the good results from the rubbish results is nigh on impossible.

But it passes. Just like everything else - we get bored and annoyed with our haircuts, our wardrobes, our music collections, and then one day we wake up and we're not bored with those things anymore - we rediscover an album we've not listened to in a year, or we buy a new scarf that brightens up all the boring stuff we were bored with yesterday, and the urge to burn everything and start again subsides.

I find that making vegetarian versions of my favourite meat dishes is the best way to combat this. Quorn mince into spaghetti bolognese, Quorn pieces into a store-bought butter chicken sauce, red kidney beans sauteed with spring onions, capsicum, corn and taco seasoning to make a taco or burrito filling, and so on. Make a list of all the things you liked to eat before you gave up meat, then vegetarian-ise them.

This too shall pass. I can send you some of my favourite recipes if you like.

Erin.
::righteous babe::
re: Seasoned vegetarians...how to get through a slump? en>fr fr>en
By d4jmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 12253, member since Fri Aug 27, 2004
On Sun Apr 15, 2012 04:25 PM
It might not be that you are bored but that you are not really satisfied because you aren't getting enough carbs. Not all carbs are bad, maybe if you included some nice, dense whole grain breads you would feel more satisfied and less bored. Or go to the health food store and try something completely foreign to you. Have you ever had Manna Bread? It's a totally unique and delicious sprouted bread that is moist and chewy. Or go and have fun with all the yummy stuff in the bag-it-yourself bins at the health food store. Oooh and try mochi! It's brown rice that has been pounded into a slab and you score it into pieces and you bake them in the oven and wonder of wonders they puff up into these soft, chewy bites that are fabulous. The cinnamon one is excellent. Grow your own sprouts - lentil sprouts are amazing. And veggie bacon bits - I put them on everything - they really wake up the palate.

:)
re: Seasoned vegetarians...how to get through a slump? en>fr fr>en
By Theresamember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member Comments: 33909, member since Wed May 22, 2002
On Sun Apr 15, 2012 05:32 PM
What about just experimenting with what you're throwing in the quinoa? I've seen recipes for adding fruit and making it like a breakfast cereal, that's something that's still the same, but different. Or what about going to the Morningstar Farms stuff - just to perk up the routine a little bit, you know? The MF BBQ rib-thingy (I forget the proper name...) is top notch.
re: Seasoned vegetarians...how to get through a slump? en>fr fr>en
By KionaTeslin Comments: 535, member since Tue Oct 05, 2004
On Mon Apr 16, 2012 07:20 AM
I don't always like following recipes, but I love new cookbooks when I'm bored. Vegan cookbooks are my current passion, they are (so far) much more interesting than vegetarian cookbooks. My favorites so far...

Try:
Vegan with a Vengeance
Vegan Slow Cooker
Vegan Lunchbox (the peanut butter greens are freaking divine, weird as that may sound).

Vegetarian:
These recipes aren't healthy overall, but they are a bit different than your average veggie cookbook and VERY good: The Accidental Vegetarian.

As far as finding things online, I look on vegetarian sites & allrecipes.com. Vegetarian blogs tend to have the most interesting ideas, and some of them are just fun to read.

Two recipes for you... I haven't made this yet, but it sounds simple & delicious: thankgodbourbonisvegan.blogspot.com . . .

I have made this one (with morning star crumbles) and LOVED it: chewyourownadventure.tumblr.com . . .
re: Seasoned vegetarians...how to get through a slump? en>fr fr>en
By xBallet_babex Comments: 1302, member since Thu Jul 17, 2008
On Sat Apr 21, 2012 05:05 PM
I'm not a vegetarian, but I like to do some meals each week. I have this book and I really like it. www.amazon.co.uk . . . They show the recipe for three soups and I've tried the first two and they were good!

Here are some other ideas:
Quinoa stuffed peppers
Spring Veggie Risotto (allrecipes.com . . .) The rice can be expensive, but you can add veggies to a boxed version really easily too.
Grilled Cheese with Tomato and Roasted Red Pepper Soup
Veggie Lasagna (which can be made in a crock pot sometimes too!)

Have you looked at Thai food cookbooks or Stir Fry cookbooks? They should have some tofu dishes in there, but you could probably replace the meat in any dish with tofu and/or portebella mushrooms and it would turn out well.
re: Seasoned vegetarians...how to get through a slump? en>fr fr>en
By Kekoamember has saluted, click to view salute photos Comments: 8863, member since Sat Jul 19, 2003
On Sat Apr 21, 2012 06:53 PM
d4j wrote:

It might not be that you are bored but that you are not really satisfied because you aren't getting enough carbs. Not all carbs are bad, maybe if you included some nice, dense whole grain breads you would feel more satisfied and less bored. Or go to the health food store and try something completely foreign to you. Have you ever had Manna Bread? It's a totally unique and delicious sprouted bread that is moist and chewy. Or go and have fun with all the yummy stuff in the bag-it-yourself bins at the health food store. Oooh and try mochi! It's brown rice that has been pounded into a slab and you score it into pieces and you bake them in the oven and wonder of wonders they puff up into these soft, chewy bites that are fabulous. The cinnamon one is excellent. Grow your own sprouts - lentil sprouts are amazing. And veggie bacon bits - I put them on everything - they really wake up the palate.

:)


I think you hit the nail on the head! I have been really carb-lite. I got a really good whole-wheat bread and made a grilled cheese today, it really hit the spot! I'll have to work on getting over my carbphobia.

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