Tuesday, September 11, 2007

What Vegetarians Eat

I am not a full-time vegetarian, but my wife Elly is, which makes me a vegetarian about 75% of the time. Vegetarians are not rare in the midwest, though you wouldn't know that by the question people almost universally ask when they learn someone is vegetarian. It's so predictable, it's funny: "What do you eat?" Elly's usual response is something along the lines of "Everything except dead flesh."

We rarely eat at restaurants anymore, apart from occasional carryout from Minsky's Pizza (5-Star Cheese or Gourmet Vegetarian) or Taj Mahal (Vegetarian dinner for two). The reason for this, apart from saving money, is that restaurant food doesn't compare with what we (especially Elly) cook at home.

Tonight we had spaghetti squash cooked with butter, garlic, gruyere cheese, and parsley, a salad with dark red kidney beans, ground walnuts and I don't know what else (unbelievably delicious), and asparagus crepes (Elly made the crepes with whole wheat flour). For dessert we had an apple crumble. Elly used various recipes, but modified them all to suit the SouthBeach diet, which I have followed off and on for a few years. It didn't taste like diet food.

And, in case you are wondering, Elly's days off from work are Sunday and Monday. A meal like this would be difficult to prepare on a workday. Even on workdays, though, we spend more time preparing and enjoying our dinner than most people do, I suspect. We typically eat later, as well, usually between 8 and 9 in the evening.

I got the squash from the Brookside Organic Farmer's Market, which I discovered a few months ago. All of the produce is raised within 100 miles of the market (most within 20, I think), is certified 100% organic, and is raised by the vendors. Saturday morning visits to the market are a fun treat.

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