Friday was my birthday, and as promised, I became vegan again starting yesterday and I will be a vegan through December 20, 2014 (if not forever).
Because I’ve already had experience with being a vegan, I’m not as freaked out as I was the last time. The first time around, I must admit I was wondering what we were going to eat?? This time I know that there is something tasty to put into my coffee. I know that there’s a great butter substitute, and I know that nutritional yeast sounds disgusting but can substitute easily and deliciously for cheese. I must admit, though, that when my family asks what’s in a recipe, I tend to skip listing nutritional yeast. Seriously, couldn’t someone come up with a more mainstream friendly name in this day and age of cleverly disguised food products? Nutritional yeast needs a new PR person stat!
Yesterday morning, I had my first cup of coffee made with So Delicious French Vanilla creamer. I am a purist so drinking the French Vanilla flavor didn’t float my boat but because there was nothing else. it’s what I used. While in my local Vons grocery store the other day, there were no other options. Despite the fact that my Vons has been targeted as having the right demographics for more organic and healthy choices, they still have not caught on in the creamer department so the French Vanilla So Delicious is the only option available. My favorite vegan creamer is found at Trader Joe’s and is cheaper than the national brands like Silk and So Delicious. It is creamy and adds a sweet flavor. With the Trader Joe’s creamer, I don’t need to add any additional sugar.
Breakfast consisted of an Eggnog Shake with the recipe coming from the website GetMealPlans.com. It’s for vegans who may need to or want to lose weight. I signed up for this meal planning service many moons ago, and although I’ve used it every once in a while, it’s never been with any consistency. I like that I can choose meal plans for just one, or for my whole family, and there’s no difference in price. For $18.99 per month, I get a new plan in my inbox each week including a shopping list and the recipes. The recipes are so easy that even someone like me can put them together quickly. And what do I mean when I say “someone like me?” I am someone who does not like to cook. I cook because I have a family and once I’m an empty nester, I’m sure it’s the first activity that will be stopped.
Lunch was toast with Earth’s Balance butter, and an apple with peanut butter. Nothing exciting there, but I did learn that I need to read labels more carefully. Turns out my “healthy” bread has whey in it, which is not vegan–a mistake I won’t make again.
One of the main ways being vegan is made simpler is through the use of cookbooks, and I used one of them last night for dinner. My husband and I ate the meal I created and two children abstained. One did try the dish and didn’t like the texture. I made “fusilli and summer vegetables with basil-cannelloni sauce.” What a mouthful!! I admit the texture was something to get used to but I love the mixture of basil and garlic so I still ate every single bite, and so did my husband.
The sun has set on my first day of being vegan again, and although it wasn’t a major success, I know how to make it better: being vegan again requires being organized–something I’m not especially good at. Fortunately, choosing to eat a quick piece of fruit or steaming a bunch of veggies requires no real mental or physical effort, and if I’m really hungry, then I have some organic brown rice in the freezer. Toss together the veggies with the rice and a couple shakes of nutritional yeast, and I’ve got a meal to keep me satisfied long enough to keep powering through.
Today’s goal: buy a bread that’s actually vegan, and plan our family’s Christmas meal.