Meatless Monday & Moosewood Meals

Hi, everyone. My name is Cat and I have a confession to make. I live with an omnivore and I actually let him cook meat in our house. Even bacon!

Everyone wants to know: "How does it work? How do you pull it off?" Well, it's actually pretty simple. Our refrigerator has a special "meat drawer" where Lee stores his carcasses, and a dedicated "meat pan" to cook them in. Our house also contains milk from real cows, eggs and butter. Some vegan, you're thinking, right? Well, I don't touch the stuff but Lee's an adult and perfectly capable of making his own decisions about his diet. He does eat organic, locally grown animal products whenever possible and he chows down on my veggie dishes every day as well.

Yes, it's difficult sometimes for me to watch as he preps a bird for roasting, or when he unwraps a particularly drippy steak. For the most part, I just try to stay out of the way when that's happening. However, our different diets don't present any "real" problems for us and we both get to eat what we like and we try to be as socially and environmentally responsible as possible while doing so.

So, finally she gets to the point! Have you heard about Meatless Monday? It's a campaign to help reduce meat consumption by 15% (one day a week) in order to better the health of the planet. The movement's website offers creative recipes to help you design your meatless meals, as well as a guide to seasonal produce. When I talked with Lee about the idea, there was no arm-twisting involved. He cares about our earth and about future generations, so he went for it and took the pledge.

Today is Lee's first Meatless Monday, so we both wanted to share what this particular omnivore had on his plate. He's not much of a breakfast guy but you can get some breakfast ideas in the recipe section of the Meatless Monday site.

Lunch Menu

Both of these recipes are from the Moosewood Restaurant Farm Fresh Meals Deck that I reviewed on Friday. We made these dishes over the weekend, so lunch was composed of leftovers. It seems like a no-brainer, but that tip saves us both time and money - and who couldn't use a little extra of those two things??

[caption id="attachment_200" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Green and White Bean Gratin"][/caption]

This gratin has layers of green beans, white bean puree, soy cheese, and whole white beans. It's topped with a crunchy breadcrumb crust and baked in the oven for a warm, creamy, satisfying dish that makes plenty of leftovers! You'll find this recipe in the "Winter" section of the Farm Fresh Meals Deck.

[caption id="attachment_201" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Cranberry Bulgur Pilaf "][/caption]

This pilaf is a side dish with a lot of personality. It's made with bulgur wheat, which is a high-fiber and high-protein food. Fresh-squeezed orange juice and zest bring sweetness, dried cranberries balance with a little tartness, and the dish is finished off with soy sauce, which helps provide an earthy dimension to this sweet-savory dish. This recipe is in the "Autumn" section of the meals deck.

Dinner Menu

I whipped up dinner using one of our favorite appliances: an electric wok. I boiled rice noodles separately on the stove before draining and adding them to the rest of the stir fry just before the veggies were done. This dish gets most of its flavor from soy sauce and fresh squeezed orange juice, but there's a lot going on so your palette won't get bored! I *do* plan to share my recipe with you later this week so stay tuned!

[caption id="attachment_203" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Soy-Citrus Stir Fry with Tofu and Bok Choy"][/caption]

Whether you're already vegan or vegetarian, or you're an omnivore interested in trying something new, I encourage you to learn more about the Meatless Monday challenge and--if you dare--take the pledge!

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