Transitioning To A Veggie Lifestyle
Transitioning from a meat eater to vegan is a difficult feat, especially when you have grown up in a meat-and-potato family. As I look back into the history of my eating habits, I realized I was eating meat and dairy, not in moderation, but three times a day. Holy Guacamole! I would start off with a breakfast sandwich consisting of eggs, some variety of meat (mostly going for bacon), and smothering cheese. Lunch would be no better with a couple slices of pizza with a variety of toppings ranging from buffalo chicken to greasy pepperoni. Don't even get me started on dinner. Most times I would settle for a pile of meat...once I ate four steaks and nothing else. I needed help. I needed vegetables.
Being a big foodie and growing up around kitchens my whole life, I read menus like people read the newspaper. I have read a lot, A LOT, of menus, so I look for fun and exciting items to eat. So factor that in with my transition, I am on the search for vegan options. My search was rather limited, because most restaurants offer alternative choices; however it is for vegetarians. Eggs and dairy are included. Now granted you could opt these two off the dish, but in reality most dishes wouldn't work without it, due to the fact it was created around egg and dairy.
Since I am still in my transition phase, I'm eating mostly vegan, sometimes vegetarian or pescatarian (fish is added to vegetarian diet). I limited my meat intake from 3 times a day, 7 times a week to about 1 day a week. And I no longer eat blocks of cheese a day. Today, I may now have a small amount of cream for my coffee, the occasional egg, or a slice or two of cheese on a veggie sandwich. Oh!
Let me drumroll into my favorite vegetarian sandwich find. *drumroll*
The Patsy Breakfast "Burger" created by Patrick Seaberg from Gulu Gulu Cafe in Salem, Massachusetts. The Patsy has egg, marinated portobello mushroom cap, smoked cheddar, tomato, red onion, pickles, baby spinach, honey mustard, and mayo all on a bagel of choice. Sesame seed is highly recommended.
The sandwich was so delicious, I ate it three times in one week. The ingredients complement each other perfectly, and I have raved about this sandwich to anyone who will listen. I even made a friend of mine try it. She was hooked.
The next time I saw Mr. Seaberg, I just had to ask how did this sandwich come about.
"Because I wanted a cheeseburger, I had to get creative. And I love pickles."
Well, Mr. Seaberg, gold star. This sandwich is going on my favorite food finds in Salem.
My veggie journey has just begun. I am signing off.
- FatBelly P.I.