Nourish

I’m Vegan and Proud

This is why I made my decision.

I come from a family that eats. From my grandmother’s grits to my father’s baby back ribs, we all appreciate good cooking. For this reason, when I was introduced to veganism during my junior year, I laughed. It wasn’t until I began reading about the food industry that my childhood morals were given a firm shake, and I was eventually moved to go vegan myself. Veganism went against many of my family’s values, but I didn’t have another option: what kind of person would I be if, after educating myself on the meat industry’s blatant exploitation, I continued to support its abuse?

Glancing nervously at my stepmother, I saw her eyes fall to the dinner she’d spent hours preparing.

Unfortunately, I chose to switch right before the holidays, and during Thanksgiving I was the laughingstock of the family. “Looks good, right?” My uncle snickered, prodding me with a dripping turkey leg. Glancing nervously at my stepmother, I saw her eyes fall to the dinner she’d spent hours preparing. My stomach roiled with guilt. “You just think you’re better than us,” sneered my brother. “Get off your high horse!”

That Thanksgiving was just the first of many passionate conversations about food. On frequent occasions, voices were raised, chairs slammed, and egos bruised all around the table. To this day, I am searching for a way to respect both my family’s culture and my beliefs. Even still, I don’t regret my decision. Consistently taking a stand for something that I believe in tastes richer than any piece of meat, no matter what kind of sauce it’s drizzled in.

Here are some of my favorite websites and recipes:
Spiced Red Lentil, Tomato and Kale Soup from Oh She Glows
Green Lasagna Rolls from Post Punk Kitchen
Peas, Carrots and Tempeh with Miso-Almond Sauce from the Vegetation Times
Book: Isa Does It by Isa Chandra Moskowitz
E-Book: Carbolicious by Bonny Rebecca

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