Hold the Beef

I declared today a new beginning of Meatless Mondays and barely made it at dinnertime. I committed to it on a whim so I didn’t make any plans or buy any groceries; I did nothing that would make this venture successful. However, I managed to scrape together a day of meatless meals.

Still full from leftovers the night before, I nibbled on a few graham crackers for breakfast. By lunch time I was ready for the taco salad I had waiting in the community fridge: shredded lettuce, homemade pico, crushed tortilla chips, black beans, shredded mild cheddar and topped with salsa and sour cream.

Taco Salad

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As I headed home for the evening, I had a stare down between Aldi and my mind, and figured that surely I could scrape together a decent vegan meal. Use up what you got! #waisteless

It didn’t take me long before I realized I had at least a few non-meat options. With leftovers from Feliz Navdid (a new Christmas tradition) I put this together.

Fried Rice Scramble

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Fried rice is one of my go-to recipes, especially if I have leftover rice. I add that to a pan with a little EVOO or a pat of butter (the real stuff) and some frozen mixed veggies (peas, carrots, corns and green beans). Today I had leftover chopped onions so I threw them into the skillet and scrambled three eggs on the side (versus one when I add chicken). I also sprinkled in powdered garlic, powdered ginger and soy sauce.  Salt to taste. Mix it all together and eat warm.

I was inspired by my brother, Grant, who switched to a vegetarian diet about a year ago and dropped 30 lbs. We made sure to include non-traditional vegetarian dishes for the holiday weekend, including faux meatballs and stuffed tofurky as well as veggie tacos to die for. Searching for alternatives was kind of fun and Grant challenged me to give it up completely. I couldn’t do it but I did say I could give it up for a day.

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Veggie Tacos

I can’t take credit for these vegetarian tacos but they were a big hit so I wanted to share. I also added taco seasoning (make your own tasty recipe here) and salt to the garlic mushrooms. I had flour tortillas on hand but next time will use corn.

Losing weight it certainly a motivating factor, as is finding creative ways to consume and enjoy vegetables. But I also want to better appreciate what Grant is doing and challenge myself to take one step in the a better direction. When I eat more vegetables I feel better and when I feel better I treat myself better. 2016 was  rough year for me.

 #Waistless & #Wasteless

  • According to the U.S. Department of Labor, one pound of beans is $1.34 versus spending 2.5 times more money for boneless chicken breast ($3.32/pound) and lean ground beef ($3.51/pound) and 4.5 times more money for sirloin steak ($6.00/pound). source
  • 1.5 pounds of boneless chicken breast costs roughly $7.00. Side dishes of potatoes and green beans cost $1.50. Total for the meal is $8.50. If we substitute the chicken with 1.5 lbs of vegetables (baked potatoes, frozen kale, lima beans) that cost us $3.00 (for all three), we save $5.50 for the day. If we do this for one day each week, at 4.33 average weeks in a month, we save $24 per month or $286 per year. ($16,300 in a lifetime.) source

Saving money, eating better, sounds like a win win to me. My goal is to continue eating more veggies and to find inspiring recipes for my brother as he learns his way around the kitchen.

 

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