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why I’m a vegetarian … again … and a recipe

Many moons ago, when I was twentysomething, I decided to stop eating meat.  And did so. For a long time.  I wasn’t necessarily the healthiest vegetarian (I didn’t particularly like vegetables!), but I went all out, educating myself on the why’s and how’s and becauses.  I got to the point where I considered myself vegan, and then one day, I craved a roast beef sandwich and it was all over.

I’d play with vegetarianism many more times throughout the years, but it never quite stuck.

Along the way, though, I learned to LOVE vegetables and became a much better cook.  Eating meatless was never really torture; in fact, it was usually delicioso.

I’d decided last year to slowly become vegetarian again.  And started inching my way toward that goal.

And made the change in one fell swoop this weekend!

What made the final change for me?  Watching Food, Inc. and some other documentaries this weekend.  I was literally nauseated, when I wasn’t horrified or just plain angry.  There was nothing new for me to see. I’ve always known how horrifying the food industry is.  I was a PETA card carrying vegan, after all.  I think some small part of me naively hoped that in our enlightened 2011, the meat industry had somehow become more humane (I know, I know).

Trust me, I know how ridiculous this sounds when I knit with animal fiber.  And I’ve been working on new fiber sources that ensure that the wool and other fibers I use are humanely gathered and prepared. (I don’t support many synthetic fibers, because they are so harmful to the environment with side chemicals from their production.)

So, to celebrate, here is a recipe for hummus that I threw together this evening.  Absolutely amazing slathered over fresh toasted sourdough bread!

Brenda’s Hummus

3 fat cloves of garlic, skins removed
1 can chickpeas (you may substitute 1-1/2 c thawed frozen chickpeas or cooked chickpeas)
1/4-1/3 c tahini (to taste – amount is up to you!)
1 chopped green onion
1 c chopped flat leaf parsley
1/2-2/3 c extra virgin olive oil
Juice of one small lemon
1/4 t chili pepper flakes
pinch salt
fresh cracked black pepper to taste
pinch or two of paprika

Throw everything into your food processor.  Pulse until combined, then process until smooth (it’s OK if there are a few rough chunks).  Store in covered container in fridge – try to let the flavors meld overnight before devouring.

To serve, add a heaping spoonful to your salad or use as sandwich filling or add a few spoonfuls onto a plate with toasted pita chips or bread (SO good).  Excellent with a little bit of fruity green olive oil drizzled over the the top.

{ 4 comments… add one }
  • heather jane April 7, 2011, 8:34 PM

    I have been using garbanzo beans as a sandwich filler my mixing them up just like tuna and ending up with a divine sandwich. I add celery, onion, shredded carrot, garlic salt and a little mayo or greek yogurt. Salt and better to taste and yum-o. Especially yummy on a parmesan bagel. I love meat. I really do. But I’m back to vegetarianism and I feel much better. Today also marks 30 days of no treats. No candy, no baking, no chocolate. I wish I didn’t feel so healthy because man I could go for some ribs with curly fries and Ben and Jerry’s Chocolate Fudge Chunk ice cream right now. But I know I’d be miserable all night long.

    poo.

  • brenda April 7, 2011, 9:03 PM

    Garbanzo bean sandwich – sounds delish!

    Wow, no treats, too? I guess I’m the same, not eating sugar. And now you have me thinking about Ben & Jerry’s!

  • Neck Wraps April 15, 2011, 3:51 AM

    My plain diet is always fruits and some fruit vegestables like carrots and tomatoe evry morning i put a little sugar to add some taste and of course just plain water not juices.

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