At the beginning of January, with 2014 just staring me in my face, I kept thinking about my years of failed resolutions. I’m a ‘make lists/ resolutions / get my life organized’ kinda gal although my follow through is usually shameful. I thought to myself, “what do I want to accomplish this year and what can I do differently to make it work?” It struck me that I’m only motivated when I’m passionate about something, and I knew that I had to do something that related to food. I ended up making a list of kitchen adventures I want for 2014 – meals to cook, food to try, chef memoirs to read, methods of cooking to tinker with. Thus my resolution list was born. I plan to add to my list as I go and share the experience with you guys, and if you come up with something cool, let me know! I’m open to suggestions.
My first resolution? Go vegetarian for a month. I’ve fasted in the past for religious holidays and my record is 10 days, but I wanted to take it a bit further and try to cook (and not bum off the parents) for the entire time. To be perfectly honest, I also am pretty lazy when it comes to washing dishes (get the blog name now?) so the whole defrosting / cleaning meat cycle can get a bit tedious. I welcomed the thought of not having to panic about undercooking or salmonella every few minutes (those of you who know my neuroses would know that’s a reasonable description).
I managed to rope Rabin into doing it and was surprisingly pleased when I got 3 of my other friends – Adam, Tariq and Shellon to do it as well (they had varying timelines of commitment – from 1 week to the full month) and I motivated my other friend Leon to at least try a couple days.
A big part of going vegetarian was to make sure we still ate properly – a month of fries, bread and pasta wouldn’t make much sense, now would it? I ended up cooking for Adam and Tariq as well and I know they at least liked a couple of the dishes. It was encouraging to see my friends so gung ho about it – I even made it to a few BBM status updates which helped inflate that budding chef ego a bit 🙂
I’m halfway through and I have to say, I don’t really miss the meat and Rabin shares this sentiment. I think my friends fared pretty well also.
Don’t get me wrong – you need to put a LOT of effort into planning menus, getting the right groceries, healthy snacks in between and catering for leftovers. I think it pays off though. There’s nothing like executing a recipe exactly. It’s also really satisfying to eat something knowing that it covers a lot of those approved food groups. My next few posts will cover a few of the favourites that I cooked over the last few weeks in case you feel the urge to hop on the Vegetarian bandwagon for a bit. My recipe collection is at your service! 🙂