Closed to the meat.

So, in an effort to do something about my cholesterol I'm thinking about how to reduce my meat, dairy and egg intake as much as I can. To this end:

Dear Lazyweb,

Where is a good place for a life-long carnivore to find a gentle introduction to meat-free/vegan cooking?



Any thoughts, suggestions, etc. would be much appreciated.
Quite seriously, before you adjust the wrong thing in your diet, read this and then watch this. No gimmick. Proper science.

And you can (and ought to) carry on enjoying meat and eggs.

Edited at 2011-05-13 07:40 pm (UTC)
My sugar intake is already pretty minimal, but I had seen that before. I'll still be eating some animal protein, just need to get a lot more plant matter into my diet instead of beefs, y'know. :)
Heh, baby steps, you know. :) I promise I won't force anything too weird on you and Katie, at least without backup options on hand. :)
I would start by trying to have more vegetable meals - rather than vegetarian meals.

Do you see what I mean?
looking at the all the comments :)
you know people that you I and I must have met thorough so different circles. always surprises me.

as well as the great recipe advice given

I'll say, try starting by having meat once a day. Just one meal, the same meals you eat now. After a while that feels really normal. Then reduce portion size per meal, and cut out a couple of days.

I did that mostly because I can't afford meat, just happened. But it's worked.

Edited at 2011-05-13 09:23 pm (UTC)
What can I tell you it's all jhaelan and Livejournal's faults. :) Got to know him through almost going to college together and he introduced us to the London Gofficks and LJ and it all went downhill from there.

I just happened not to have gone to school with most of 'em. ;)

A gentle ramping down does sound like a top plan, especially since I tend to think it's all rather tasty. :)
Now I'm not relying on takeaway lunches any more (working on an industrial estate makes it a bit harder to find the quick meats, unless I go to The Van, which I've resisted so far) I've accidentally been eating 5+ a day for the last week. Which scares me.

I've always turned to nou's site when looking for the tasty vegetables and low fat cooking options - She is a genius, as we all know.
saves me fromn linking to her. ;)

to my surprise there are even tasty tofuoptions which dont involve meat.

admittedly im curredntly in a curry place waiting for a sheek kebab, meat samsomsa and a garlic naan.
im also pissed. beer qand a mazrmite vodka ftw
Indeedy, need to brush up on my veggie Indian. Thanks for the link!
It is summer, which makes things easier. When I did it I sort of eating meat and cheese things for lunch and swapped to salads. Then in the evenings I cut down heavily mainly using the principle that I will eat it a lot less often, but when I do eat it I will eat something really good think one good steak a week. Also things like chilii and curry all work well in vegetarian mode and fish is always good.
Yeah, my plan is to save the meaty meals for occasional good restaurant visits, etc., or eating at friends.

I think I've come to realize that what I'm looking to learn about is how to actually work with tofu, tempeh, etc. as that is what is unknown to me. I can cook just about any vegetable under the sun, I just need to have something else to build the meal around. :)
What I finds helps is to obtain near overwhelming amounts of veg regularly. That leaves you so worried about it all going off and being wasted that you eat so much vegetation that you just don't have room for much meat and it becomes rarely missed. Of course this only works when you don't buy a lot of meat at the same time leaving you also feeling you have to eat all the meat before it goes off. Helpfully, most began proteins never go off (ie dried/tinned lentils, beans, dried soy mince etc).

Sounds a bit daft, but it _might_ help as it's what I tend to do normally. I'm not sure of much good advice I can give as I naturally inclined (after ~5 times a week meat parent cooking) towards meat about once/twice a week.

Also I guess, the more you cook meat-free or vegan the easier it gets to instinctively put together interesting meals. When I went fully vegan for a month I found just pootling around websites linked from google gave ideas, even if not recipes which I used exactly.
Yeah, as suggested by a friend on facebook, it might be time to join a Community Supported Agriculture scheme (like veg-box meets cooperative - a common scheme over here for local produce). That should give us plenty of veg to work through. :)

I think that's a lot of it, getting used to the meals minus the meat when planning shopping and thinking about what to cook in a hurry. Need to learn how tofu, tempeh, etc work. :)
So speaking as a committed carnivore married to a mostly vegetarian, its possible to replace mince and chicken pieces in things like curry and spag bol with quorn with only a fairly minimal taste deficit, not as good, but filling and passable with a good sauce.

Also fish is good. Eat lots of fish, hang the environment and the fake factory fish farming and eat it two or three times a week if poss. That keeps the protein levels high but cuts out the worst of the seriously bad fats in red meat. Roast it, grill it, shallow fry if you have to, curry it and bake it into pie! Many good things can be done with fish.

Not that my diet has resulted in a terribly sleek outline, so feel free to ignore this post if you like ;]
Quorn doesn't seem to be readily available over here, and has eggs in it, but i'm thinking that finding a protein in sauce substitute may be key.

Fish we already eat fairly often, and that will likely be what little animal protein I do eat, I reckon. We shall see how it goes. :)