Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Another attempt at ethical eating

Recently, we have decided to re-embark on the journey towards more sustainable and ethical eating. Prior to this decision, we have been consuming a fairly hefty amount of dairy and eggs, and while we try to buy organic and humanely-raised of these products, we sometimes don't. I was reading an article the other week about the animal industry in the United States, and how incredibly wasteful and inhumane it is, and felt hopeless at convincing Americans to change their habits and then I realized that in a way I am also contributing to this when I buy these products, even in small quantities. Tim and I discussed it at length and decided we would give veganism another shot.

I have qualms about veganism as well -- I'm not entirely convinced that Weston Price doesn't have it right, and we need mass amounts of animal products for a healthy body. I think full-fat milk products, local organic eggs and meats are probably pretty wholesome and delicious. But I do know that the way more animals are raised in our country, and most of their by-products, are produced under horrible conditions and are a huge waste of energy and pollutants. It is hard to be vegan without relying on the fake meat and cheese products -- and these are chockful of weird ingredients and preservatives, which is also something we avoid. So... what do we eat? So far, Atticus loves tofu (and we found an awesome local producer), we are fine with milk substitutes, and we've been doing lots of greens, micro-greens, potatoes, and broccoli, waiting for the bounteous crop this summer from our CSA. My friend Karen is moving back to Utah, and we raided her food storage and took home cans and cans of beans and oatmeal and whole wheat. One of my recent favorite discoveries has been creamy pasta sauces made with cashews. But this is a question we are not entirely sure of, so we welcome your feedback. Leave your favorite vegan recipe, or snack ideas, or kid-friendly cuisine, websites, etc. 


  1. Jeremy just spent the last five days making vegan cheese (because you can't just buy the finished product here). It was...interesting. The girls liked it. Like you said, though, it had a lot of strange ingredients and I'm not sure in the end it did any good. The products we had to buy to make the vegan cheese had to be produced and packaged and shipped, which makes it possibly as high-impact as regular ol' cheese from a cow.

    We've been making vegan burger patties with way more success. These are made from more accessible ingredients like beans and lentils, so I think that's more sustainable for our family.

  2. I completely agree about wanting to cut back on conventional animal products but not trusting the ingredients of many meatless substitutes. I think the Weston A. Price Foundation has some very good points and I really wish it was possible for us to source local, grassfed, organic meat, dairy and eggs right now. Hopefully someday. I really cannot give up cheese, though. I just can't do it.

    Some of my favorite vegan recipes:

    averiecooks.com has a lot of vegan recipes, especially baked goods, that I've got my eye on.

  3. Ask Aunt Jeanne about the labor involved in harvesting cashews.

  4. Another to add to the category of creamy cashew sauces for pasta: http://cupcakeprofessor.wordpress.com/2012/02/07/macaroni-and-cheese/

  5. Mom apparently doesn't want you to be vegan. Lots of rice, oatmeal, beans, and nuts. I've heard people talking about vegan French toast lately. We are really lucky to have good local sources of dairy, eggs, and chicken. I think I'd miss eggs the most. They seem to me hardest to substitute.

  6. Since you posted this, all I can think of is grown-up Atticus, looking like John Corbett, marrying a Greek woman and the scene, "What you mean he don't eat meat?!... that's ok, I make lamb!"