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Meatless Monday … Through Sunday

What was intended to be a four week post-holiday spree of meatless eating has turned into an ongoing conversation that frequently includes this phrase: ‘So, are we vegetarian?’

Spoiler alert, we are not, not really. We order meat sometimes when we’re at a restaurant (read: steak burrito at Chipotle yesterday) and will happily eat it if someone else has cooked for us (read: we don’t want to be those people, the ones with the fussy diet that makes everyone feel anxious about having us over) but at home, we eat a lot of vegetables. And we eat at home 90% of the time, which means bring on the baby spinach.

I never thought I, a midwestern barbecue chicken enthusiast, would go for months without having beef or chicken in my refrigerator. I truly did not, much in the same way that I don’t anticipate ever dying my hair platinum blonde or attempting to grow the worlds longest fingernails. It’s a surprise to me, is what I am trying to say, but I like it. I like surprising myself. I like the challenge of finding new recipes and adapting the old ones. I like the way I feel healthier.

I also like offering myself meat at the grocery store to make sure I am not deprived by my idealism. Here Emily, I said, how about that tasty-looking wing in the deli section? Want one of those little guys? No? Okay, maybe next week.

Now, after three months and nearly 60 new recipes, O and I have some stand-out favorites. The quinoa would be worse with ground beef in it, I swear it’s that good, but don’t forget the avocado! The eggplant dish… well, anything with baked fresh mozzarella is a winner in my book. And the cold orzo salad is perfect for the warm spring day that I keep waiting to arrive. And speaking of springtime, Punxsutawney Phil, I am coming after you, you lying scoundrel.

1. Smitten Kitchen | Baked Orzo with Eggplant and Mozzarella
2. Milk Free Mom | Vegan Quinoa and Sweet Potato Chili
3. Stay for Dinner | Minter Orzo Salad with Chickpeas & Feta

More like this:

March 27, 2013 - 9:53 pm

Jinger - I’ve always kind of been meatless but like you guys, I won’t turn it down. And I love a good steak! But here’s a recipe I think you might like for a lunch option. I’ve made this a few times now and will often double the servings to last the week. It really breaks up the monotony of my usual lunch meat options (really the only time I ingest some meat).

http://www.thekitchn.com/vegetarian-lunch-chickpea-of-t-114022

March 27, 2013 - 10:05 pm

Emily - I LOVE this. I was at the grocery store today, silently bemoaning the fact that I can never think of a quick lunch if we eat all of our leftovers. Problem solved. These look so good.

March 28, 2013 - 7:55 am

susanne evangelista - hah! i think you should work on the fingernails, i’d like to see you blog that ;)
we have been factory farm meat free for almost 2 years and it’s not hard! we didn’t eat a ton of meat before, and it’s easy to find awesome veggie meals! good for you guys, i treat meat as more of a delicacy (we will be having it for easter!) because good meat is expensive!
also, the pitas were very fluffy! go for it and tell me what you think!

March 30, 2013 - 1:53 pm

Emily - You should post more of your veggie recipes! I am ALWAYS looking for new ones. Pita is on the deck for next week!

April 1, 2013 - 4:18 pm

Haley - Love your food posts! Just pinned all three of these…

April 2, 2013 - 9:50 am

Emily - I have a bunch to post this week, too. I finally get to give you recipes after trying basically everything on your Pinterest : )

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