About a year ago I came across the idea of Meatless Mondays, at about the same time that I watched (and was horrified by) Food, Inc (http://www.foodincmovie.com/). Having never been a big consumer of meat, and having watched baby chicks dumped onto conveyor belts, I decided it was time to incorporate those meatless days into our family meals.
One of the biggest contributing factors was the cost of purchasing meat from ethically raised animals. Given that these animals tend to be raised on smaller farms that don’t have money flowing in from McDonalds, their overhead is a bit higher than factory farms. While the extra cost is worth knowing that my chicken saw sunshine and could stand on its own, it meant that we had to reduce our meat consumption in order to stay in our grocery budget.
I also wanted to impact my step-daughter’s meals. If you sit this 11 year-old down at the table, she will consume a pound of meat and nothing else. I really have no desire to see what her colon looks like. Given our schedule with her, the biggest impact (without sending her into tizzy) would mean reducing our meat consumption to just one meal on Saturday and Sunday each.
In the beginning, this was not a difficult task as we tended to eat meat lightly anyways. We usually managed on less than a pound of chicken for a family of four at a single meal. Which also makes me wonder what happened to those ground beef packages that weigh under a pound. Have you noticed that you can’t get anything for less than 1.20 pounds now-a-days?
I picked up a couple vegetarian cookbooks, some geared toward teens and others that were multicultural in nature, and then passed off Boco Burgers as hamburgers. Surprisingly both kids said they were the best burgers they ever had and I let them think they were hamburgers for about 3 meals before I filled them in.
The only challenge has been the nights that my Significant Other has to take over the meal preparation. He is the Hamburger Helper kind of cook. Because of a very busy spring, he has had to take over cooking a great deal, so our meatless days have gone a bit by the way side. Of course, the concession stand at the Little League field hasn’t helped either.
It is my hope, that with a few lessons and some cookbook research, I will be able to help my S.O. get some vegetarian cooking practice and at least 3 or 4 meals he can easily handle on his own by the end of summer.
Jacki writes at The Raven’s Spell ) where she explores the magic that has become her life, which includes a blended family, working outside the home, and going back to school. She has addiction problem when it comes to books, but can also be found gardening and enjoying weekly farmer’s markets.
Thank you Jacki.