Zia Hassan

Meatless Meat

+++ title = “10” date = 2018 +++

I get confused and amused at some vegan and vegetarian recipes that show up on the internet. Usually it’s some kind of listicle about going meatless, some kind of challenge to get people to get less animal products, or sometimes less carbs.

Examples: White bean meatballs, no cheese cheeseburgers, eggplant bacon, cauliflower rice, etc.

I’m not against eating more vegetables or less carbs. In fact, plant based is my default (but I’m not strict enough to call myself a vegan).

But some of these recipes go too far in their effort to engage potential meat loving converts. It’s the same with things like zucchini noodles, or tofurkey.

The feeling I get when I eat these foods is… I wish I was eating the real thing. I wish it was real cheese, real burger meat, real noodles. I’m getting a cheap substitute. I’m getting ripped off.

Of course, it’s a much harder task to sell someone on eating salad or isolated vegetables. But that’s what would work on me; eating as a mindful and nourishing routine, rather than a way to just get full.

I’d rather enjoy the succulent tenderness of a kiwi than eat a fake meatball. Much rather have seasoned and cooked brussel sprouts than zucchini that kind of resembles noodles.

I’m anti-imitation and pro-alternative.

Same goes for music and movies and all art, really. I love Bon Iver, but loathe Bon Iver imitators.

I’d rather immerse myself in a genre I don’t particularly care for if I’m listening to an innovator.

Wouldn’t you?