Despite my devotion to a meat-free lifestyle, I love the taste, the smell, the luxury of eating meat. When I lived in Memphis, my husband would pick up ribs from the Rendezvous at least twice a week. My lust for ribs & brisket was insatiable. Tops BBQ (they’re tops in BBQ) was another favorite… you can have Corky’s. Then there was Bo’s BBQ in Lafayette, CA. My point being that I get it, for those who tell me they have to eat meat. We long for it. We are omnivores.
Sometimes, someone will raise the issue that it is a little crazy to say you don’t eat meat, but then try to recreate the experience of eating meat. No, it’s not crazy. We grow up finding comfort in food; our memories are often bound to the smell and taste of food (a la Proust). If I can avoid the unhealthy practice of eating animal products, but get similar enjoyment from a substitute, then it would be crazy not to!
On that note, I’ll share two products that make my vegan recipes not only work but taste amazing. Try the LightLife brand Smart Bacon on a BLT in lieu of the bacon. It is a soy/wheat product. The trick in cooking these is to use either a good spray or blotch of oil in the pan so that the strips don’t get overly dry, and to be careful not to overcook.
The Field Roast brand vegan sausage, a seitan product, is delicious, and not just with respect to faux sausage. It tastes like real sausage, but without the greasy-ness. I’ve only started with the apple sausage and am going back to try all the other varieties. Honest Weight Food Co-op carries them, here in the Albany, NY region.
I’ve had crappy tasting veggie burgers and hot dogs. There are a lot of bad-tasting products vegan, and otherwise, on the shelves. Also, you can experiment with your own seitan and tofu recipes (see my faux bacon recipe from an earlier post.) Knowing that these easy to prepare substitutes are available, just make life better.