I’m not a vegan. That does not stop me from wishing that I had the cajones to woman up and go vegan. The problem is… I love SO many things that have eggs in them, or BUTTER (which can make anything taste good in my opinion), or honey, or cheese… the list goes on and on.
Like I said… I wish I had the cajones. Mainly because last year one of my first and favorite Environmental professors told us this: eating meat is like driving a Hummer, being a vegetarian is like driving a hybrid, and going vegan is like riding a bicycle.
The largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions is the meat industry. Livestock are responsible for 18% of greenhouse gas emissions. Part of this is due to the burning of fuels to transport meat, part is due to the fuel used to make the synthetic fertilizers used to grow the crops that the animals eat, and part is due to cow flatulence and manure. The flatulence and manure actually emit methane which is 20x worse than carbon as a greenhouse gas.
Furthermore, cows need a lot of water. Just to produce one liter of milk, it is said that 990 liters of water must be used.
Animal manure washes into waterways and kills ecosystems in rivers, lakes, and oceans. It also makes the water toxic for human ingestion.
In South America and other places, deforestation is occurring to clear way for cattle grazing lands. This means a loss of complete ecosystems! Plant and animal populations are being devastated.
If going vegan can help reduce all of this… maybe we should all grow a pair. OR maybe we could all try going vegan a day or two a week (or if it’s difficult for you a meal or two a week). Like I said… I really like butter. So, to give it a try (and to prove how DELICIOUS vegan recipes can be) I decided to ride a bicycle today.
Strawberry-Banana Agave Smoothie
- 1 1/2 cup soymilk
- 1 Banana
- Frozen Strawberries
- 1 Tablespoon Agave Nectar
- A dash of pumpkin pie spice (cinnamon, ginger, allspice, nutmeg, clove)
- A dash of extra cinnamon (I love cinnamon)
- Ground flaxseed
- A pinch of Maca (if desired)
- Optional: If you’re looking to make this a breakfast meal like it was for me, I recommend adding almond butter. It’ll thicken up the recipe and add some protein and fat which will allow it to make you full. Added bonus: almond butter is completely vegan! WOOHOO!
Then just blend all of the ingredients together! The frozen strawberries take the place of any ice needed, so if it is not to the desired consistency, just add some more!
Quinoa, Kale, Artichoke, Tomato Pilaf
Makes 2 Servings
- 1 cup quinoa, uncooked
- 1 bunch kale, torn up, stems removed
- 3 roma tomatoes, chopped
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 3 artichoke hearts chopped
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- optional: add mushroom (portabella) for some protein, you can also add other vegetables such as broccoli.
Rinse the quinoa to remove bitterness.
Heat vegetable stock to a boil, add all of the ingredients and reduce to a simmer. Cover the mixture and cook for 15-20 minutes or until the quinoa is fully cooked.
It was really delicious and the recipe is really easy to fiddle with. I used all organic locally grown vegetables again and it was 100% vegan yumminess.
- Vegan things can be delicious!
- The meat industry (which is also in charge of the milk, butter, cheese, etc. that we love) is environmentally hazardous. I recommend that we all try to eat vegan for at least a couple of meals a week.
- And eating vegan stops YOU from ingesting the growth hormones and antibiotics in our animal products these days.