Tips for a new vegetarian?

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Tips for a new vegetarian?

Post by siofradh on Wed Mar 28, 2012 11:21 am

Hi everyone Smile
This week, me and my mam both made a huge decision to become vegetarian. It is something I've wanted to do for years and years now, but couldn't because my mam was a meat eater but since she's on board now, it'll be so much easier for me. She was a veggie from the age of 14-21, but one Christmas was found by her family with her head in the fridge stuffing herself with turkey so that was the end of that Laugh Laugh She knows what she's in for, but I really haven't a clue! Meh I'm a big foody, so I'm going to find it extremely hard.
So any veggies on the site have any tips for a newbie? Or if you're not a vegetarian, got any good recipes? Wink Nothing too complicated now Wink
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Re: Tips for a new vegetarian?

Post by GillianK on Wed Mar 28, 2012 12:22 pm

I've been a vegetarian since I was quite young, about 12-years-old maybe younger. I'm now 28. I just replace meat with lots of quorn alternatives, quorn 'fillets' or 'nuggets', quorn 'sausages', quorn pies. You can buy quorn 'chicken style' pieces for kormas, and quorn 'mince' or quorn 'meatballs' for spaghetti bolognese. Or a quorn roast for sunday dinners with onion gravy. To me they are all delicious. My hubby prefers quorn to many meats now, and specifically asks for eg quorn 'sausages' rather than meat ones, cause he feels they are much tastier. Theres ample alternatives out there.

Quorn products and other vegetarian products are available at all major supermarkets. I find life very easy as a vegetarian. Supermarkets and restaurants are fast becoming more vegetarian friendly. When I first was a vegetarian, there was no alternatives at all for me. I just had potatoes and veggies for main meals, and nothing else. (mind you my parents were the least adventurous cooks at the best of time) It was always lumpy potatoes, overcooked veg and (for them) watery mince. Cringe! Sometimes the odd cheese and onion quiche for me! But mostly my parents refused to cater for my diet. But I got used to it and was quite happy. But thats not the way it is now. Now vegetarians have ample choice as vegetarianism increases in popularity.

Here's a couple of links to quorn. There are more veggie alternatives than just quorn. Linda McCartney etc has a good range, but personally I don't much like her range, but I try it all. :-) Just go and find the 'vegetarian' fridge and freezer when next in Tesco or Sainsburys or wherever you shop, and start sampling. You won't like it all, but you'll like most I'm sure. Below has a Quorn link with loads of yummy recipes. I love quorn ... in case you didn't guess. ;-)

http://www.quorn.co.uk/recipes/

http://www.quorn.co.uk/
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Re: Tips for a new vegetarian?

Post by siofradh on Wed Mar 28, 2012 1:25 pm

Thanks Gillian - We actually went to tesco today to look at some of the quorn stuff. I've had some before, wasn't too fond of it but it would certainly do me Smile What is the quorn chicken like? I'm really looking forward to filling the shopping trolley this week with veggie stuff only Wink Also picked up a vegetarian cook book today so that'll give us some ideas Smile
Thanks for the links, I'm going to read through the quorn recipes now! Tongue
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Re: Tips for a new vegetarian?

Post by GillianK on Wed Mar 28, 2012 1:29 pm

I quite like it actually. I prefer quorn 'turkey'. Hubby said when quorn is mixed with eg korma or bolognese, he doesn't notice that its quorn and not meat. It can sometimes lack flavour (to some, not me, I love it) but so does a lot of meat or else it wouldn't need mixed with spices and sauces. Just need to be adventurous with quorn too. :-)
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Re: Tips for a new vegetarian?

Post by Mel on Wed Mar 28, 2012 10:48 pm

I'm vegan, have been for about 6 years now.

I think the most important thing, before I get on to the food part, is the reasons and motivations you have for doing this. If you want to be veggie and stay that way, you need to sort out in your head why you are doing it (eg is it for health, ethical reasons, the environment...) and keep that at the front of your mind. At the beginning it can be hard when you crave a non-veggie food, and having a list of reasons why you shouldn't eat that food that outweighs the craving is a massive help.

For me, it began with ethical reasons. I love animals so don't eat them, simple as that. I physically couldn't now, there is no temptation left. I was veggie first, but when I realised the dairy industry and meat industry are so interconnected (things like the fact that male cows born to dairy cow mothers are sold as meat) and did some research into where eggs come from, I just couldn't be a part of any of that any more so became vegan. Those where the things I had to keep at the front of my mind when I smelt something yummy that I knew I shouldn't have for example.

You talked about being a big foodie Big Grin , lucky for you that doesn't have to end here! Going veggie just opens up so many doors you hadn't even noticed before! Be adventurous for the first while, try out everything. Try tofu/beancurd, tempeh and seitan as alternatives to meat and decide which you like best. Tofu is available in your usual supermarkets while the others are available in asian supermarkes. Asian supermarkets are a great place to try new things, they have so much that's veggie-suitable! Supermarkets do plenty of veggie alternatives too, such as the linda mccartney range and quorn, although that has eggs in it so I don't eat it (even my rats only get eggs laid from my parent's chickens, which I can be sure are REALLY 'free range' (it is used so freely these days to describe hens that don't even get to be outside!) and happy and healthy).

I can really recommend Isa Chandra Moskowitz's recipe books, and 'Skinny bitch' for some hard-hitting motivation.


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Re: Tips for a new vegetarian?

Post by katherine on Thu Mar 29, 2012 6:41 am

As an ex veggie (sorry) I'd say get some foreign cookbooks - from countries where they eat less meat than us such as south east asian cookery. A lot of mediterianian stuff is lovely and meat free too. Good luck Smile

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Re: Tips for a new vegetarian?

Post by Zoundz on Thu Mar 29, 2012 8:35 pm

Yes, there's a lot of great veggie recipes in foreign cookbooks, and also online Grin Good luck!

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