Everything you wanted to know about Vegetarianism and were afraid to ask post...

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I am on a low sodium diet, because my kidneys don't process salt as well as they should. It is getting easier over time, at least in the US. There are more and more low-sodium and no salt added products available all the time. BTW, over time, my tastes have changed with my low-sodium diet. Now, when I go to a restaurant, the food often tastes too salty. The more salt you eat, the more you want. The less salt you eat, the less you want.

The biggest thing is to cut way back on processed foods and restaurant foods.

CD
So true. The less salt you eat the less you want. We quit salt in the shaker last June. We've been using no-salt, a potassium substitute. At first it didn't help much but now we both like that instead.
We still get sodium in soy sauce, yellow mustard, low sodium ketchup, seasoned tempeh, seasoned tofu, pickles, and don't forget baking soda and baking powder.
 
That looks great! Sometimes Diet restrictions ( due to health or other reasons) forces us to be creative. Although Im vegetarian / vegan, which has its obvious limitations, I've bee also told I need to restrict my carbs. Doesn't leave me much to go with, but forces me to be creative with what I can eat. Back I the day, I also loved my cheese ad dairy products. Anyway, I make a similar dish as you did above. Instead of sautéing , I grill my veggies, the mix them with the farro. I grill Onions, Zucchini, tomatoes , mushrooms ( I also use an imitation meat product), then mix it all in with the farro. Just a different take on what you did :)

Thank you for your kind comment, your dish looks very tasty too, even more healthier, since you grilled the veggies👍. You're right about diet restrictions forcing us to be creative, that's the positive side, I suppose🙂.
 
I am on a low sodium diet, because my kidneys don't process salt as well as they should. It is getting easier over time, at least in the US. There are more and more low-sodium and no salt added products available all the time. BTW, over time, my tastes have changed with my low-sodium diet. Now, when I go to a restaurant, the food often tastes too salty. The more salt you eat, the more you want. The less salt you eat, the less you want.

The biggest thing is to cut way back on processed foods and restaurant foods.

CD

Yes, I've discovered just that! You get used to eating less salty foods, doesn't really bother me anymore. I've also cut down on processed foods and takeaways too, which I was never really keen on anyway.
I don't even crave all those salty, fatty foods I used to love, knowing the harm they could do me, especially after two scares I had with my hypertension, blood pressure shooting up to extreme levels, spending nights at Emergency (Sorry, I probably should have posted this in The Sick Room, but I'm ok now, fingers crossed🙄🤞).
 
I hope people will not be shy. I think that this subject due to some "political delinquent retards" gets a bad rep. I am a vegetarian because I choose to be for health reasons.

I was born and raised in the south. I think the only seasoning my mother knew of was bacon grease. Her food was delicious if it was southern cooking. The only Italian food we ever ate was when we went to a really excellent Italian restaurant owned by two real Italians. We rarely ate out. We would on occasion go to McDonald's and had Chinese food once a year after I got to be a teen.

After I began my vegetarian journey I knew I had to learn to cook. I began watching you tube videos and studying different methods of cooking. I bought a kitchen-aide mixer, food processor and the journey was on. I make all of my dishes from scratch. I also use mostly organic ingredients. I am lucky enough to live near two Whole Foods grocery stores. I purchase many of my ingredients online from small retailers and a few local farmers.

I have found vegetarian options in restaurants has grown considerably. Even here in the south. LOL My family went to Las Vegas and we ate at Gordon Ramsey's restaurants. We ate at : 1. Gordon Ramsay Pub & Grill 2. Gordon Ramsay Burger and 3. Gordon Ramsay Hell’s Kitchen .. You have to ask for the vegetarian menu. Their vegetarian food was awesome. I also ate a couple of times at the Harvard Club in Boston and boy do they know how to make vegetarian delicious goodness too..

Anyway, I want this to be a post for people to feel free to ask questions about vegetarianism but were too scared to ask. I also can give you ideas for when vegetarian family members come over to eat at your house and you begin to panic.

Any way let the conversation begin.... Ask away..
Adding more fiber-rich foods to your diet is a great idea for your health, whether you're vegetarian or not. It's cool to hear about your journey into vegetarianism and how you've learned to cook from scratch.

It can be tough when your family's used to a certain way of eating, but it's awesome that you're sharing tips for accommodating vegetarian guests. Let's open up the conversation about vegetarianism and make it a safe space for questions and discussions. Whether it's about nutrition, cooking tips, or navigating social situations, feel free to ask anything – no question is too small! Let's learn and grow together!
 
People certainly need to think about the foods they eat considering the state of the nation, specifically western countries like the US and Canada for example considering the health situations those countries find themselves in today, no doubt about it. Personally I'm an advocate for a whole food diet that include both plant and animal sources and believe this is the better and healthier route. Just my opinion based on my understanding of nutrition from years, decades actually of educating myself.

Vegetarianism is certainly an option as far as a whole foods diet goes but it needs to be understood more so with the knowledge of some considerations. For example and this can be true for some people that consume a poorly designed omnivore diet as well. First there's a need for variety to ensure a diverse range of foods to ensure you get all the necessary nutrients. This includes fruit, veg, whole grains, legumes, nuts and seeds. Protein is vital for longevity and quality of life and understanding the DIASS score (Digestible Indispensable Amino Acid Score) of plant based protein would be a benefit and crucial for overall health. Understanding iron and absorption. Vitamin B12 and of course Omega 3's . These are a few but there's many other complications that really don't surface until later in life, so understanding some of the pitfalls would be an advantage.

Basically knowledge, variety and balance when designing a vegetarian diet to me is paramount and of course talking to your Dr. or dietitian is a good idea before someone starts. Again my intention is not to derail your lifestyle choice, just including a different point of view that hopefully adds some value to the discussion.
 
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I’m content to be an omnivore but I’m always interested in recipes that showcase the familiar inexpensive foods that I enjoyed growing up.

I’m also interested in simple swaps, using common ingredients, to reduce the use of animal products in cooking and baking.

What inexpensive plant based dishes appeared regularly when you were a kid?

Baked beans
Tomatoes and macaroni
PB&J
Wacky Cake
Beans ‘n’ greens
Oatmeal
Pasta ‘n’ peas
 
There is no better option to add vegetables to your dish. Mix and match of these veggies list is enough to create your masterpiece meal.
 
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Baked beans
Tomatoes and macaroni
PB&J
Wacky Cake
Beans ‘n’ greens
Oatmeal
Pasta ‘n’ peas
Most of these are regular dishes for us.
Baked beans (we grew up with baked bean sandwiches)
Mac and tomatoes (he calls it poor man's spaghetti from childhood)
Beans and greens (all the time)
Oatmeal (or 9 grain flakes)
Pasta 'n' peas (often with whole wheat pasta Or veggie brown basmati rice (w/peas))

Miss Aunt Bea, have you been looking in our windows? ;)
 
Most of these are regular dishes for us.
Baked beans (we grew up with baked bean sandwiches)
Mac and tomatoes (he calls it poor man's spaghetti from childhood)
Beans and greens (all the time)
Oatmeal (or 9 grain flakes)
Pasta 'n' peas (often with whole wheat pasta Or veggie brown basmati rice (w/peas))

Miss Aunt Bea, have you been looking in our windows? ;)
No, but it sound like we grew up in the same neighborhood.

I still enjoy baked bean sandwiches with a squirt of ketchup or the 70s hippie version of chickpea of the sea sandwich spread.

Much of the influence is from my maternal grandmother who grew up and raised her young family in the days before rural electrification and mechanical refrigeration. She had a heavy hand with butter and bacon fat but eating from the garden was just a simple fact of life.

I find your posts helpful and informative. I’ve adapted many of your tips and techniques to my way of doing things with good results.

Two cooking books that have also been helpful to me are More with Less Cookbook by Doris Jansen Longacre and the original Laurel's Kitchen by Carol Lee Flinders, Laurel Robertson, et al.
 
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I’m content to be an omnivore but I’m always interested in recipes that showcase the familiar inexpensive foods that I enjoyed growing up.

I’m also interested in simple swaps, using common ingredients, to reduce the use of animal products in cooking and baking.

What inexpensive plant based dishes appeared regularly when you were a kid?

Baked beans
Tomatoes and macaroni
PB&J
Wacky Cake
Beans ‘n’ greens
Oatmeal
Pasta ‘n’ peas
We had salted sliced tomatoes and cucumbers soaked in diluted white vinegar on the table almost every night from July to September when I was growing up in Michigan. We also had grilled corn on the cob frequently. Of course, they were usually served with a good steak or burgers 😉
 
We had salted sliced tomatoes and cucumbers soaked in diluted white vinegar on the table almost every night from July to September when I was growing up in Michigan. We also had grilled corn on the cob frequently. Of course, they were usually served with a good steak or burgers 😉
We always had a similar summer pickle on the table with a dressing of apple cider vinegar, S&P, and a bit of sugar.

We enjoyed our share of beef, usually in the form of a Sunday roast.

We cooked outdoors when I was a kid but we didn’t start grilling until the late 60s.

These days I rarely cook beef at home, it just doesn’t have enough of a WOW factor, for me, to justify the cost.
 
Lunch staples that I remember the most were
1. Tomato soup and grilled cheese
2. Baked Beans with cut up Hot Dogs.

in no particular order Both soup and beans were canned
 
I am an omnivore, though I don't eat a lot of meat. I do find that there are few meals you can't add more vegetables to! Any "stew" type meal - I will always add more and different vegetables to whatever the recipe says. Also rather bland things like Couscous are vastly improved by the addition of as many veggies as you can throw in there! (And lemon zest/fresh herbs of course.)
 
We had salted sliced tomatoes and cucumbers soaked in diluted white vinegar on the table almost every night from July to September when I was growing up in Michigan. We also had grilled corn on the cob frequently. Of course, they were usually served with a good steak or burgers 😉

I absolutely LOVE good fresh tomatoes. Too bad I can't get them where I live. Simply sliced, with a little salt and pepper. I could easily eat that every day.

CD
 
I absolutely LOVE good fresh tomatoes. Too bad I can't get them where I live. Simply sliced, with a little salt and pepper. I could easily eat that every day.

CD
I get so excited about tomato season because I love to eat them in many different ways. I only eat local tomatoes in season which for me planting starts June 1st. We're a
climate zone 7a, just for interest. Anyway, harvest starts in July normally starting out with the cherry, smaller varietals to around sometime in October. After that I buy either canned whole tomatoes or Passata and it's normally Mutti. Actually this rule I have of consuming local and in season is pretty well how I eat, generally speaking. The other local veg I don't eat out of season, ever, are asparagus and corn.
 
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I am an omnivore, though I don't eat a lot of meat. I do find that there are few meals you can't add more vegetables to! Any "stew" type meal - I will always add more and different vegetables to whatever the recipe says. Also rather bland things like Couscous are vastly improved by the addition of as many veggies as you can throw in there! (And lemon zest/fresh herbs of course.)
Do you precook the veggies, since couscous cooks so fast? I have only recently started using it. I finally found wholewheat couscous.
I get so excited about tomato season because I love to eat them in many different ways. I only eat local tomatoes in season which for me planting starts June 1st. We're a
climate zone 7a, just for interest. Anyway, harvest starts in July normally starting out with the cherry, smaller varietals to around sometime in October. After that I buy either canned whole tomatoes or Passata and it's normally Mutti. Actually this rule I have of consuming local and in season is pretty well how I eat, generally speaking. The other local veg I don't eat out of season, ever, are asparagus and corn.
I avoid tomato seeds, since that seems to be the part of the tomato that aggravates my arthritis the most. Passata is made without seeds, so it is my go to for canned or bottle tomato. Have you tried Pastene passata? How does it compare to the Mutti? I have noticed the Mutti while shopping.
 
Two cooking books that have also been helpful to me are More with Less Cookbook by Doris Jansen Longacre and the original Laurel's Kitchen by Carol Lee Flinders, Laurel Robertson, et al.
The second cookbook interested me. Other readers also say they like the earlier edition 1976-77, better than the new edition. I'll keep my eyes peeled for it, though, I've been trying very hard to limit my library. I measure my limits based on what I can carry or want to carry, in case we move.
 
The second cookbook interested me. Other readers also say they like the earlier edition 1976-77, better than the new edition. I'll keep my eyes peeled for it, though, I've been trying very hard to limit my library. I measure my limits based on what I can carry or want to carry, in case we move.
The early edition has a more grassroots vibe consistent with the times in which it was written.

My copy is an inexpensive used Bantam mass market paperback.

9780553201406-us.jpg
 
I get so excited about tomato season because I love to eat them in many different ways. I only eat local tomatoes in season which for me planting starts June 1st. We're a
climate zone 7a, just for interest. Anyway, harvest starts in July normally starting out with the cherry, smaller varietals to around sometime in October. After that I buy either canned whole tomatoes or Passata and it's normally Mutti. Actually this rule I have of consuming local and in season is pretty well how I eat, generally speaking. The other local veg I don't eat out of season, ever, are asparagus and corn.

Mutti passata is usually regarded as the best (or one of the best) in many surveys, especially because they use the best quality "San Marzano" tomatoes which are considered "top quality" for making passate, they are tastier and sweeter than other tomatoes which tend to be too acidic.
Passate made with "datterini" are super fantastic too😋.
 

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