Meatless and Loving it? What is up?

Sensational Saturdays

my MISCELLANEOUS blogging day

When I first started trying veganism it was easier than I thought it would be. The toughest thing was, and still is, going to other people’s houses. Or eating out. That is very hard. But eating at home has become not only easy, but my preferred way of eating. Its taken about six months, but I don’t really want to eat meat anymore. And the way that I know this is we went out to dinner last week. And I ate meat.

I love Red Robin’s Teriyaki Chicken Burger. I love the pineapple and Teriyaki combo. The whole thing is just delicious. So I decided I would be a bad vegan and have one. I haven’t eaten chicken for months, just the occasional piece of salmon and beef. (See, I told you last week I’m not a perfect vegan!) But when we went out I ordered so fast, that I ordered the wrong burger. I ordered the California Chicken Burger.

And when it arrived I was so disappointed. It wasn’t the one thing that I had given myself permission to go off of my strict food program for. But it was what I had ordered, so I ate it. And you know what? I made a discovery. The chicken was not what I wanted. What I wanted was the flavor of pineapple, teriyaki and (let’s face it) mayonnaise. I really wished, if I hadn’t gotten the Teriyaki Chicken Burger, that I had ordered a Garden Burger!

Wow! I actually wanted a Garden Burger instead of meat!

So it does happen. I’d heard that once you started eating a certain way your body’s cravings for things changed, and I think that’s what is going on. I really love the smell of barbecued meat, but I’m very happy sliding my Tofurkey brat onto the grill instead. Go figure!

Today’s recipe is based on my sisters adaptation of a recipe from Carraba’s Italian restaurant. They have a wonderful lentil soup. My sister lightened it with turkey sausage and makes something similar at home. I’ve gone one step further and used the Tofurkey Italian sausage. But I put the meat alternative instructions at the bottom. Just in case you are not ready for the dreaded Tofurkey. Not too long ago I wouldn’t have touched it. Now I have to tell you  that this soup is very satisfying and delicious and I ate the whole pot by myself over the course of last week. It is that good. Enjoy!

Sausage Lentil Soup

  • 2-3  Tofurkey Italian Sausages
  • 1 chopped onion
  • 1-2 tsp crushed fennel
  • 1 cup chopped carrot
  • 28 oz diced canned tomatoes (Stewed Tomatoes work great)
  • 4 cups water
  • 3 tsp Better Than Bouillon Vegetable Base
  • 8 oz dried lentils (I like red because they are prettier, but green work just fine)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt and pepper and 2-3 tsp lemon juice to taste
Sauté onion, carrot and fennel for approximately ten minutes till onion and carrot are soft. Add tomatoes, water, bouillon, bay leaf and lentils (rinse and sort lentils first). Cook1 to 1.5 hours till lentils are done. Add chopped up Tofurkey sausage and season with salt, pepper and lemon juice to taste.
*For meat eaters: Brown 8-12 oz turkey Italian sausage (remove from casings) first. Then add the onions and carrots and fennel and continue with the recipe from there.

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4 Comments

Filed under Sensational Saturday's, Veganista? Or Veganish?

4 responses to “Meatless and Loving it? What is up?

  1. Brinda Berry

    You’ve managed to make me hungry. 🙂 I love soup. I make something really easy from a mix that you might like. Do you like Asian flavors? I use a Bear Creek Hot and Sour soup mix and add tofu chunks. It’s quick and easy.

    • That sounds delicious! I love hot and sour soup in restaurants. I’ll have to look for that one for sure. During the winter I usually make a big pot of some kind of soup at least once a week. Vegetable soup is another of my favorites for lunch with a hummus and sauteed spinach open face sandwich. Yumm!

  2. Jessica, you are so right. When I first learned I couldn’t have wheat or dairy anymore, I panicked. First, wheat and diary are everywhere, I had to become a label-reader. And I craved, craved, CRAVED a hot slice of oven-fresh bread dripping with butter. Even went to sleep dreaming of the delicacy. Now, don’t come near me with a grilled cheese sandwich. Ew.

    So, all you die-hard I-can’t-live-without-my-soda addicts out there, take note. Once you wean yourself off pop, after having pop out of your system for six months or so, you won’t want it ever again.

    • I certainly didn’t expect it to happen, but I’m glad it’s happening. The only thing I really still want are sweets, and I can have vegan sweets. But only if I bring them myself! Grilled cheese has been one of my comfort foods for years and I haven’t had one since March. I really hadn’t thought about one…..Nope, I can do without. 🙂

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