Friday, January 15, 2010

The Challenge Update: Halftime

Something I still won't see for awhile: 4505 Meats lengua/brisket sandwich, topped with shredded brussel sprouts, a fried egg, and hollandaise

I am halfway through my month of not eating meat. It's only been 2 weeks, but I feel like it's been a long time, and February couldn't come sooner! The very first day (1-Jan-2010), I was already challenged by having lunch with my extended family at a serious Vietnamese restaurant (like... Story Rd Little Saigon serious). Now, I never realized how difficult it is to avoid meat and meat products in their cuisine, and at the time I was under the impression that I just wasn't eating meat... so I ate around fish, but still ate fish sauce. Some would call that cheating, like my sisters, but I didn't think it was. Regardless, I haven't eaten anything cooked with meat or meat-based sauces either since then.

Eating out in social settings is really the hardest part, as I learned once again on 2-Jan-2010, when my friend had a party with Hawaiian BBQ. Good thing I brought my own food! Many of my friends have shaken their heads with pity on me after forgetting about my month-long diet, especially after offering me some bacon that was more or less a cube of fat. One night I went to the MOMA and hung out at the rooftop Blue Bottle, where their only savory options were a mortadella sandwich, and a sweaty, stale cheese sandwich that had been left out all day. I ended up having a latte and half a slice of cake for dinner.

No sweaty cheese on this tray! R: the makings of an amazing butternut squash pasta with fresh sage from my mother's garden, and brown butter (it looks really dark because of the solids, which I later strained out)

So what have I been eating, and not just avoiding? LOTS of curry. I have seriously been eating some form of curry multiple times a week - Korean, Indian, Thai... you name it. I went to Udupi for the first time I learned of Mike's absolute love for Indian and Thai food (I thought it was just Italian). I've had split pea soup up the wazoo (so easy to make), and discovered the most amazing mix at TJ's - almonds, peanuts, wasabi peas, and dried cranberries. I've generally also been eating less - not because I've been restricted, but since I have less options, I don't have the chance to over-gorge like I normally do. My body has also been craving fat, something I am not used to since I generally get that from animal protein. I should probably eat more eggs.

While it hasn't been too difficult so far, it's still been more challenging than I thought it would be. Here's to two more weeks!

1 comment:

margaretmit said...

It's ok about picking out the fish since you didn't know. Now that you do know, it's good that you've been avoiding it.

Joe has been eating a lot of vegetarian burritos and vegetarian sandwiches from Whole Foods. We also have pasta with marinara sauce instead of meat. He eats at least 3 pieces of fruit at every meal to fill him up. And cheese.