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Old 08-06-2007, 06:56 PM   #1
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Vegans, stand up and be counted!

Just wondering who else was out there! I'm curious how long your diet has been vegan, what you find easiest and hardest about it, and maybe a few of your favorite things to make.

I was a vegitarian for around six years, and went vegan around three weeks ago. So far so good- actually I've tried some really fun new stuff when cooking and it's been inspiring rather than limiting.

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Old 08-06-2007, 07:50 PM   #2
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I'm effectively vegan, although I don't worry if I ingest small amounts of dairy products (say, a bit of milk used in making a loaf of bread) and I'm willing to eat something with cheese, butter or milk if I'm at someone else's place or at a restaurant. But I generally avoid dairy products at home because if I didn't they'd have to bury me in a piano case! I just like cheese too much.

But I've been a vegetarian since 1971. I was 13 years old. There are a lot of easy things about it. If you eat a lot of rice and beans, as I do, and rely on local farmers for your fresh fruits and vegetables, it's a relatively inexpensive diet. I also feel good about eating in a way that's good for the environment and as cruelty-free as possible.

I can't think of anything difficult about it. It's really simple. Rice, pasta, grains, beans, fruits, vegetables, a world of spices....just be creative and mix them together.

As for my favorite things to make, rice and beans dishes. I love to make gallo pinto, which is the national dish of Costa Rica and actually commonly eaten for breakfast (although it's wonderful at any time of the day). It's a simple mixture of rice, black or red beans, onions, red or yellow bell peppers, garlic and a delicious Costa Rican condiment called Salsa Lizano (which used to be difficult to find in the U.S., but Knorr bought out the Lizano company and now I buy it in the latino section at the Food Lion across the canal from my home). I also make a lot of vegetarian jambalaya because I love those New Orleans flavors. And I'm always making big pots of vegetable stew or soup.
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Old 08-07-2007, 02:43 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolfman Jack
There are a lot of easy things about it. If you eat a lot of rice and beans, as I do, and rely on local farmers for your fresh fruits and vegetables, it's a relatively inexpensive diet. I also feel good about eating in a way that's good for the environment and as cruelty-free as possible.
My thoughts, to the word!

I'm all about rice and beans, but not just in the usual sense- I like white rice, basmati rice, brown rice, wild rice, black rice, and lentils, red beans, black beans, chick peas, aduki beans, and kidney beans. So much variety and so many possibilities!

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I can't think of anything difficult about it. It's really simple. Rice, pasta, grains, beans, fruits, vegetables, a world of spices....just be creative and mix them together.
For sure. The only difficult part for me is sometimes I want to involve cheese in my dishes. But definitely, a vegan diet has actually made my cooking mre creative. I think I've eaten better (and healthier) than ever in the last few weeks. Cheese and butter anre tasty, but I think they're also bit of a crutch!

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As for my favorite things to make, rice and beans dishes. I love to make gallo pinto, which is the national dish of Costa Rica and actually commonly eaten for breakfast (although it's wonderful at any time of the day). It's a simple mixture of rice, black or red beans, onions, red or yellow bell peppers, garlic and a delicious Costa Rican condiment called Salsa Lizano
Oh boy. We have a fair bit to gab about. I lived in San Jose, Costa Rica for about five years...
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Old 08-07-2007, 11:03 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Little Penguin
My thoughts, to the word!

I'm all about rice and beans, but not just in the usual sense- I like white rice, basmati rice, brown rice, wild rice, black rice, and lentils, red beans, black beans, chick peas, aduki beans, and kidney beans. So much variety and so many possibilities!



For sure. The only difficult part for me is sometimes I want to involve cheese in my dishes. But definitely, a vegan diet has actually made my cooking mre creative. I think I've eaten better (and healthier) than ever in the last few weeks. Cheese and butter anre tasty, but I think they're also bit of a crutch!



Oh boy. We have a fair bit to gab about. I lived in San Jose, Costa Rica for about five years...
Oh, wow....Costa Rica is my favorite place in the entire world! I was one engaged to a girl from San Jose and had figured on living out my life there. Although things didn't work out as I'd planned, I still have very fond memories of the beauty of the country and the friendly people. And San Jose is a lot of fun. I do hope to go back someday and the thought of retiring there is never far from my mind.

Glad to hear the vegan diet is going well. Sound like we have some very similar tastes in food! By the way, I just put some beans on to soak and I'm planning to make some gallo pinto in the morning.
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Old 08-08-2007, 12:30 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolfman Jack
If you eat a lot of rice and beans, it's a relatively inexpensive diet. I also feel good about eating in a way that's good for the environment and as cruelty-free as possible.
not necessarily. pppffffrt!
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Old 08-08-2007, 02:56 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buckytom
not necessarily. pppffffrt!

Love it BT!!!!!
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Old 08-08-2007, 12:40 PM   #7
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not necessarily. pppffffrt!
Ha!

I guess I'm one of the lucky ones, though. Lentils, chickpeas, black beans, and red beans have been constants in my diet for around a decade and a half, and they've never given me any, ahem, trouble.
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Old 08-08-2007, 12:43 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolfman Jack
I just put some beans on to soak and I'm planning to make some gallo pinto in the morning.
Incidentally... you mentioned Salsa Lizano... can you get it where you are?
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Old 08-09-2007, 08:37 AM   #9
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Yes, I can actually buy it in the local grocery store about half a mile from my house. But it's only recently that they began to stock it when they expanded the latino section. I read somewhere that it was a labeling problem that prevented them from selling Salsa Lizano in the U.S. until recently, but apparently after Knorr bought out the company they must have fixed the problem. I would imagine most latino specialty markets would carry it now.

As for beans, I've never had too much of a gas problem either. But I always soak my beans overnight, which helps to loosen the skin and release the gas. Also, if you toss in a bay leaf or a slice of ginger, that helps. And cook them until they're soft and squishy.
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