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Category : Vegetarianism

Meatless meal: Mushroom dish is tasty for vegetarians and turkey-lovers alike – Williston Daily Herald

FARGO The big question each Thanksgiving has typically been simple: white or dark meat? But what do you do if you have guests whose answer is, simply, no meat?

The rise of vegetarianism over the past decade means that its likely your guest list will include at least one or more folks who prefer a meatless Thanksgiving. While many vegetarian guests will tell you not to go to any extra trouble, and that theyre happy to graze from the standard variety of vegetable side dishes, we worry that the lack of protein means that they will leave our table still hungry. This simply is not allowed in our food-friendly home, especially on Thanksgiving.

It doesnt take much extra effort to provide a plant-based protein alternative for your veggie-loving guests, and these Caprese-Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms are hearty, delicious and easy to prepare, even in the midst of pre-feast kitchen chaos.

Low in fat, calories and sodium, nutrient-dense portobello mushrooms are a good source of protein, fiber and folate to ensure a full belly, as well as a host of vitamins and minerals believed to help fight cancer, boost the immune system and decrease inflammation. Portobello mushrooms have a wonderful meaty quality in both texture and taste, which makes them popular with vegetarians and carnivores alike.

For this simple dish, youll need four large portobello mushrooms, which are commonly sold in packs of two in most supermarkets. To prepare the mushrooms, remove any remaining stems as well as the dark brown gills to clear space for the caprese stuffing. The gills can be easily removed by gently scraping them with the edge of a spoon.

Once the inside is prepped, use a damp paper towel to wipe away any dirt from the top and inside of each mushroom. Next, brush each mushroom with a mixture of extra-virgin olive oil, minced garlic, salt and pepper and bake at 400 degrees until soft, about 10 minutes.

Once theyre soft, remove them from the oven and use a paper towel to absorb the excess moisture released in each mushroom. If your available oven time is limited on turkey day, you can refrigerate the mushrooms at this stage for up to one day.

The caprese stuffing is inspired by our wonderful time in Sicily this past summer, which was filled with a bounty of fresh mozzarella cheese and tomatoes. I use fresh mozzarella balls, either pre-marinated or plain, and my favorite variety of flavor bomb cherry tomatoes.

To flavor the caprese mixture, I use extra-virgin olive oil, a splash of red wine vinegar, a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes and a dash of Sicilian herb seasoning blend (any blend of dried oregano, basil and parsley will do). Each mushroom cap is stuffed with the caprese mixture and baked until the cheese is melted and bubbly, and the tomatoes just begin to blister, about 12 to 15 minutes.

For extra Italian flavor and a pop of color, garnish the mushrooms with thin strips of fresh basil and a drizzle of either balsamic reduction or basil pesto.

With their big flavor, bold colors and high nutrition, these Caprese-Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms are the perfect vegetarian dish for the upcoming holiday season. But, be warned: theyre so attractive and delicious that your turkey-loving guests will probably want a taste, too.

Caprese-Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms

4 portobello mushrooms caps, washed and thoroughly dried with paper towel (if purchasing whole, remove the stems and gills)

cup extra-virgin olive oil or canola oil, divided

teaspoon red wine vinegar

teaspoon Sicilian or Italian herb seasoning (blend of dried herbs like oregano, parsley and basil)

Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes

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1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

cup fresh mozzarella balls, halved (if using a log of mozzarella, cut into -inch pieces)

2 tablespoons fresh basil, sliced into thin strips (chiffonade), about 4 large leaves

Balsamic reduction or basil pesto (optional)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil; set aside.

In a small bowl, combine 2 tablespoons of oil with the minced garlic, salt and black pepper. Brush each mushroom all over with the oil mixture, then place on the prepared baking sheet, top side down.

Bake until the mushrooms are soft to the touch, about 9 to 10 minutes. Use a paper towel to soak up the excess moisture inside the mushrooms. The mushrooms can be used immediately or refrigerated at this stage for up to 1 day until ready to finish baking. Bring to room temperature before baking.

As the mushrooms bake: In a medium bowl, use a whisk to combine the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil with the vinegar, herb seasoning and red pepper flakes. Add the tomatoes and mozzarella and gently toss to combine. Taste and add salt and pepper as desired (I use teaspoon of each).

Once the mushrooms are baked until softened, and wiped free of excess moisture, fill the inside of each with the caprese mixture. Return mushrooms to the baking sheet and bake until the tomatoes begin to blister and the cheese is melted and bubbly, about 12 to 15 minutes.

Remove from oven and transfer mushrooms to serving plates or a platter. Generously sprinkle each mushroom with the chopped basil and garnish with a drizzle of reduced balsamic vinegar or basil pesto.

Home with the Lost Italian is a weekly column written by Sarah Nasello featuring recipes by her husband, Tony Nasello. The couple owned Sarellos in Moorhead and lives in Fargo with their son, Giovanni. Readers can reach them at sarahnasello@gmail.com.

Read this article:
Meatless meal: Mushroom dish is tasty for vegetarians and turkey-lovers alike - Williston Daily Herald

Recommendation and review posted by Alexandra Lee Anderson

Hosting vegetarian guests? Make this mushroom dish that even turkey-lovers want to try – Duluth News Tribune

The rise of vegetarianism over the past decade means that its likely your guest list will include at least one or more folks who prefer a meatless Thanksgiving. While many vegetarian guests will tell you not to go to any extra trouble, and that theyre happy to graze from the standard variety of vegetable side dishes, we worry that the lack of protein means that they will leave our table still hungry. This simply is not allowed in our food-friendly home, especially on Thanksgiving.

It doesnt take much extra effort to provide a plant-based protein alternative for your veggie-loving guests, and these Caprese-Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms are hearty, delicious and easy to prepare, even in the midst of pre-feast kitchen chaos.

Low in fat, calories and sodium, nutrient-dense portobello mushrooms are a good source of protein, fiber and folate to ensure a full belly, as well as a host of vitamins and minerals believed to help fight cancer, boost the immune system and decrease inflammation. Portobello mushrooms have a wonderful meaty quality in both texture and taste, which makes them popular with vegetarians and carnivores alike.

For this simple dish, youll need four large portobello mushrooms, which are commonly sold in packs of two in most supermarkets. To prepare the mushrooms, remove any remaining stems as well as the dark brown gills to clear space for the caprese stuffing. The gills can be easily removed by gently scraping them with the edge of a spoon.

The gills of portobello mushrooms can be scraped out with a spoon to make room for the caprese stuffing. Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor

Once the inside is prepped, use a damp paper towel to wipe away any dirt from the top and inside of each mushroom. Next, brush each mushroom with a mixture of extra-virgin olive oil, minced garlic, salt and pepper and bake at 400 degrees until soft, about 10 minutes.

Once theyre soft, remove them from the oven and use a paper towel to absorb the excess moisture released in each mushroom. If your available oven time is limited on turkey day, you can refrigerate the mushrooms at this stage for up to one day.

The caprese stuffing is inspired by our wonderful time in Sicily this past summer, which was filled with a bounty of fresh mozzarella cheese and tomatoes. I use fresh mozzarella balls, either pre-marinated or plain, and my favorite variety of flavor bomb cherry tomatoes.

A caprese filling of fresh tomatoes and mozzarella is used to stuff portobello mushrooms. Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor

To flavor the caprese mixture, I use extra-virgin olive oil, a splash of red wine vinegar, a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes and a dash of Sicilian herb seasoning blend (any blend of dried oregano, basil and parsley will do). Each mushroom cap is stuffed with the caprese mixture and baked until the cheese is melted and bubbly, and the tomatoes just begin to blister, about 12 to 15 minutes.

For extra Italian flavor and a pop of color, garnish the mushrooms with thin strips of fresh basil and a drizzle of either balsamic reduction or basil pesto.

With their big flavor, bold colors and high nutrition, these Caprese-Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms are the perfect vegetarian dish for the upcoming holiday season. But, be warned: theyre so attractive and delicious that your turkey-loving guests will probably want a taste, too.

Serves 4

Ingredients

4 portobello mushrooms caps, washed and thoroughly dried with paper towel (if purchasing whole, remove the stems and gills)

cup extra-virgin olive oil or canola oil, divided

1 clove garlic, minced

teaspoon kosher salt

teaspoon black pepper

teaspoon red wine vinegar

teaspoon Sicilian or Italian herb seasoning (blend of dried herbs like oregano, parsley and basil)

Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes

1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

cup fresh mozzarella balls, halved (if using a log of mozzarella, cut into -inch pieces)

2 tablespoons fresh basil, sliced into thin strips (chiffonade), about 4 large leaves

Balsamic reduction or basil pesto (optional)

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil; set aside.

In a small bowl, combine 2 tablespoons of oil with the minced garlic, salt and black pepper. Brush each mushroom all over with the oil mixture, then place on the prepared baking sheet, top side down.

Bake until the mushrooms are soft to the touch, about 9 to 10 minutes. Use a paper towel to soak up the excess moisture inside the mushrooms. The mushrooms can be used immediately or refrigerated at this stage for up to 1 day until ready to finish baking. Bring to room temperature before baking.

As the mushrooms bake: In a medium bowl, use a whisk to combine the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil with the vinegar, herb seasoning and red pepper flakes. Add the tomatoes and mozzarella and gently toss to combine. Taste and add salt and pepper as desired (I use teaspoon of each).

Once the mushrooms are baked until softened, and wiped free of excess moisture, fill the inside of each with the caprese mixture. Return mushrooms to the baking sheet and bake until the tomatoes begin to blister and the cheese is melted and bubbly, about 12 to 15 minutes.

Remove from oven and transfer mushrooms to serving plates or a platter. Generously sprinkle each mushroom with the chopped basil and garnish with a drizzle of reduced balsamic vinegar or basil pesto.

Home with the Lost Italian is a weekly column written by Sarah Nasello featuring recipes by her husband, Tony Nasello. The couple owned Sarellos in Moorhead and lives in Fargo with their son, Giovanni. Readers can reach them at sarahnasello@gmail.com.

Read more:
Hosting vegetarian guests? Make this mushroom dish that even turkey-lovers want to try - Duluth News Tribune

Recommendation and review posted by Alexandra Lee Anderson

Vary your veggie options – The Observer

When I decided to become a vegetarian, I knew I had cut my options for accessible and convenient food in half. Most meals feature some sort of meat as the star of the dish, and it can be hard to come by a decent vegetarian option, especially when youre in a rush. And while CWU does have a few options for vegetarian and vegan students, if were being honest, they could be doing a lot better.

According to Forbes, 10% of Americans aged 18 to 29 do not eat meat, with 7% being vegetarian and 3% who are vegan. This is much higher than any of the older age ranges surveyed and shows a trend of college-aged Americans eating less meat. With vegetarianism and veganism on the rise, options on college campuses should reflect the growing demand.

As a senior who lives off campus, Ill admit that I dont eat at the SURC very often. I cant recall many vegetarian options in the dining hall when I was a freshman, but I know that dining has recently expanded their menu to include more meatless dishes. Lately, my experience with vegetarian options at CWU has been grab-and-go options from the Bistro or C-Store. Here, I can find an overpriced bowl of chopped fruit; a protein box with nuts, hummus and veggies; and salads, salads and more salads. While its great that these options are available for students who dont eat meat, eating the same thing over and over can get pretty boring.

With limited meatless options to pick from, I should at least be able to expect my vegetarian meal to actually be vegetarian. Just last week, I picked up a grab-and-go salad from the bistro, clearly marked with a V indicating that it was vegetarian. As I sat down, open my salad and pour on the dressing that was included, I decided to take a peek at the ingredients contained in the dressing. About halfway down the list, I see it: anchovy paste. For me, this was little more than an annoyance. Some people, though, may be allergic or intolerant to an ingredient like anchovies. It can be easy to overlook a minor ingredient like that in a dressing or a side component of the meal. But had I known it wasnt vegetarian, I wouldnt have wasted $6 on the salad in the first place.

I think its awesome that vegetarian options are there, and compared to some other colleges, CWU has plenty to offer in that area. I just think that options could be expanded to include other types of dishes. Instead of a bland salad or mediterranean-style wrap, why not offer something more interesting and flavorful, like curry or a vegan pad thai? There are lots of cultures that have dishes that revolve around plant-based diets, such as Indian, Ethiopian and Thai cuisines. Adding dishes like these would not only bring more flavor to the vegetarian menu at CWU, but also deliver a taste of culture and diversity as well.

Other than the lack of variety, the problem I have with vegetarian options on campus is the lack of protein. Often, when I need to grab a quick bite, I have to opt for some sort of fruit or veggie-based snack with a low amount of protein. Aside from the protein box, the options presented at grab-and-go locations on campus arent the most protein-packed meals. It would be cool to have more meal options that feature beans, chickpeas or even meat alternatives, such as Beyond Meat, as a plant-based protein source.

In the future, as more students start eating less meat and the demand for meatless meals goes up, Im sure options for vegan and vegetarian students will expand. But until then, Ill keep bringing my lunch from home.

Excerpt from:
Vary your veggie options - The Observer

Recommendation and review posted by Alexandra Lee Anderson

Hosting vegetarian guests? Make this mushroom dish that even turkey-lovers want to try – INFORUM

The rise of vegetarianism over the past decade means that its likely your guest list will include at least one or more folks who prefer a meatless Thanksgiving. While many vegetarian guests will tell you not to go to any extra trouble, and that theyre happy to graze from the standard variety of vegetable side dishes, we worry that the lack of protein means that they will leave our table still hungry. This simply is not allowed in our food-friendly home, especially on Thanksgiving.

It doesnt take much extra effort to provide a plant-based protein alternative for your veggie-loving guests, and these Caprese-Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms are hearty, delicious and easy to prepare, even in the midst of pre-feast kitchen chaos.

Low in fat, calories and sodium, nutrient-dense portobello mushrooms are a good source of protein, fiber and folate to ensure a full belly, as well as a host of vitamins and minerals believed to help fight cancer, boost the immune system and decrease inflammation. Portobello mushrooms have a wonderful meaty quality in both texture and taste, which makes them popular with vegetarians and carnivores alike.

For this simple dish, youll need four large portobello mushrooms, which are commonly sold in packs of two in most supermarkets. To prepare the mushrooms, remove any remaining stems as well as the dark brown gills to clear space for the caprese stuffing. The gills can be easily removed by gently scraping them with the edge of a spoon.

The gills of portobello mushrooms can be scraped out with a spoon to make room for the caprese stuffing. Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor

Once the inside is prepped, use a damp paper towel to wipe away any dirt from the top and inside of each mushroom. Next, brush each mushroom with a mixture of extra-virgin olive oil, minced garlic, salt and pepper and bake at 400 degrees until soft, about 10 minutes.

Once theyre soft, remove them from the oven and use a paper towel to absorb the excess moisture released in each mushroom. If your available oven time is limited on turkey day, you can refrigerate the mushrooms at this stage for up to one day.

The caprese stuffing is inspired by our wonderful time in Sicily this past summer, which was filled with a bounty of fresh mozzarella cheese and tomatoes. I use fresh mozzarella balls, either pre-marinated or plain, and my favorite variety of flavor bomb cherry tomatoes. Both products can be found in most supermarkets and big-box stores in the Fargo-Moorhead area.

A caprese filling of fresh tomatoes and mozzarella is used to stuff portobello mushrooms. Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor

To flavor the caprese mixture, I use extra-virgin olive oil, a splash of red wine vinegar, a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes and a dash of Sicilian herb seasoning blend (any blend of dried oregano, basil and parsley will do). Each mushroom cap is stuffed with the caprese mixture and baked until the cheese is melted and bubbly, and the tomatoes just begin to blister, about 12 to 15 minutes.

For extra Italian flavor and a pop of color, garnish the mushrooms with thin strips of fresh basil and a drizzle of either balsamic reduction or basil pesto.

With their big flavor, bold colors and high nutrition, these Caprese-Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms are the perfect vegetarian dish for the upcoming holiday season. But, be warned: theyre so attractive and delicious that your turkey-loving guests will probably want a taste, too.

ARCHIVE: Read more Lost Italian columns and recipes

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

4 portobello mushrooms caps, washed and thoroughly dried with paper towel (if purchasing whole, remove the stems and gills)

cup extra-virgin olive oil or canola oil, divided

1 clove garlic, minced

teaspoon kosher salt

teaspoon black pepper

teaspoon red wine vinegar

teaspoon Sicilian or Italian herb seasoning (blend of dried herbs like oregano, parsley and basil)

Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes

1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

cup fresh mozzarella balls, halved (if using a log of mozzarella, cut into -inch pieces)

2 tablespoons fresh basil, sliced into thin strips (chiffonade), about 4 large leaves

For garnish: Balsamic reduction or basil pesto (optional)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil; set aside.

In a small bowl, combine 2 tablespoons of oil with the minced garlic, salt and black pepper. Brush each mushroom all over with the oil mixture, then place on the prepared baking sheet, top side down.

Bake until the mushrooms are soft to the touch, about 9 to 10 minutes. Use a paper towel to soak up the excess moisture inside the mushrooms. The mushrooms can be used immediately or refrigerated at this stage for up to 1 day until ready to finish baking. Bring to room temperature before baking.

As the mushrooms bake: In a medium bowl, use a whisk to combine the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil with the vinegar, herb seasoning and red pepper flakes. Add the tomatoes and mozzarella and gently toss to combine. Taste and add salt and pepper as desired (I use teaspoon of each).

Once the mushrooms are baked until softened, and wiped free of excess moisture, fill the inside of each with the caprese mixture. Return mushrooms to the baking sheet and bake until the tomatoes begin to blister and the cheese is melted and bubbly, about 12 to 15 minutes.

Remove from oven and transfer mushrooms to serving plates or a platter. Generously sprinkle each mushroom with the chopped basil and garnish with a drizzle of reduced balsamic vinegar or basil pesto.

This week in...

Home with the Lost Italian is a weekly column written by Sarah Nasello featuring recipes by her husband, Tony Nasello. The couple owned Sarellos in Moorhead and lives in Fargo with their son, Giovanni. Readers can reach them at sarahnasello@gmail.com.

Originally posted here:
Hosting vegetarian guests? Make this mushroom dish that even turkey-lovers want to try - INFORUM

Recommendation and review posted by Alexandra Lee Anderson

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: A vegetarian diet is a viable choice – BCLocalNews

To the editor,

Re: Its a bit late to demand total plant consumption, Nov. 5.

The columnist asks how veganism would contribute to ecological well-being of humans and other animal species and then concedes that it would achieve immense savings in health costs and reduction in greenhouse gases.

In the north, or on land suitable for pasture but not for crops, I can understand raising animals as a local option. Here in the developed world we tend to build residential suburbs on fine farm land. But to state that shifting to plant diets doesnt take into account global impacts or historical realities sounds very much like the rhetoric of the global corporate capitalism that she decries.

Plant diets can support larger populations than animal diets based on plant inputs. The vegetarian philosophies of Pythagoras of Samos and Gautama Buddha are more than 2,500 years old, and a Scientific American article points to evidence that our ancestors have been primarily vegetarian for 30 million years.

We know that business and political interests prop each other up. Far from being a large-scale action that can only be effected by governments, vegetarianism is a personal decision that can be put into practice every day, and its as down-to-earth as backyard gardening. Anywhere in urban Canada (and especially on Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland) its easy to find the ingredients for a meal of vegetables made with love.

As Jonathan Safran Foer writes, Choosing leaf or flesh, factory farm or family farm, does not in itself change the world, but teaching ourselves, our children, our local communities and our nation to choose conscience over ease can.

If humans deserve justice, then so do animals.

Ian Poole, Nanaimo

OPINION: Its a bit late to demand total plant consumption

RELATED: New Canada Food Guide nixes portion sizes, promotes plant-based proteins


The views and opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are those of the writer and do not reflect the views of Black Press or the Nanaimo News Bulletin. If you have a different view, we encourage you to write to us or contribute to the discussion below.

Follow this link:
LETTER TO THE EDITOR: A vegetarian diet is a viable choice - BCLocalNews

Recommendation and review posted by Alexandra Lee Anderson

Does the Church have a stance on vegetarianism? – The Irish Catholic

Questions of Faith

Now more than ever, people are freely opting for a plant-based lifestyle not only to improve their health but also for moral reasons. Its estimated that about 11% of the global population is vegetarian and this number is increasing daily given societys changing attitudes towards meat consumption.

For Catholics who are considering a meat-free life, does the Church have any instruction on this form of living?

Official Church teaching doesnt say much about vegetarianism but there is plenty of theology on the topic that can point us in the right direction.

While some people claim that Jesus was a vegetarian, this argument falls flat on its feet when you read the Bible. Jesus, for example, participated in the Passover meal which required a lamb to be slaughtered, which was then eaten. He also promoted fishing (Lk 5:2-7) and the miracle of the multiplying loaves and fish reinforce his acceptance of eating animals.

Others have pointed to the Book of Genesis where God gives Adam and Eve permission to eat plants alone (Gen 1:29). If they were instructed to only eat greenery, then we should abide by this injunction.

However, this teaching is supplanted with another after the Great Flood when God says: Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you; and as I gave you the green plants, I give you everything.

This clearly shows Gods explicit go-ahead to consume meat.

A plausible counter-argument to this point is that permission was only granted after the Fall, but that ideally humans were only intended to eat plants.

Its a rich and thought-provoking discussion and the Church has made its voice clear on the morality of eating meat.

God entrusted animals to the stewardship of those whom he created in his own image. Hence it is legitimate to use animals for food and clothing. They may be domesticated to help man in his work and leisure. (CCC 2417)

It is likewise unworthy to spend money on animals that should, as a priority, go to the relief of human misery

While the Church supports meat consumption in principle, this doesnt always mean that doing so is moral. Plenty of meat today is produced in an unethical fashion causing immense pain and suffering to the animals involved.

This activity is whole-heartedly condemned by the Church.

It is contrary to human dignity to cause animals to suffer or die needlessly. It is likewise unworthy to spend money on them that should, as a priority, go to the relief of human misery. One can love animals; one should not direct to them the affection due only to persons. (CCC 2418)

Although a Christian can argue that eating meat is both theologically and morally sound, its important to remember that animals still need to be treated with dignity.

Anything less than this disrespects a creation that God has deemed very good.

Related

The rest is here:
Does the Church have a stance on vegetarianism? - The Irish Catholic

Recommendation and review posted by Alexandra Lee Anderson

India is Not a ‘Vegetarian Country’ Like the EAT-Lancet Report Would Have Us Believe – The Wire

Vegetarians, far less vegans, let us be frank, would not like to be compelled to eat meat. Yet the reverse compulsion is what lurks in the current proposals for a new planetary diet. Nowhere is this more visible than in India.

The subcontinent is often stereotyped by the West as a vegetarian utopia, where transcendental wisdom, longevity, and asceticism go hand in hand.

Earlier this year, the EAT-Lancet Commission released its global report on nutrition and called for a global shift to a more plant based diet: The scientific targets set by this Commission provide guidance for the necessary shift, which consists of increasing consumption of plant-based foods and substantially reducing consumption of animal source foods.

In the specific Indian context, the call to consume less animal foods has a special significance because it could become a tool to aggravate an already vexing political situation and stress already under nourished Indians.

Worryingly, the EAT report feeds into the false premise that traditional diets in countries like India include little red meat which might be consumed only on special occasions or as minor ingredients of mixed dishes.

In India, however, there is a vast difference between what people would wish to consume and what they have to consume because of innumerable barriers around caste, religion, culture, cost, geography, etc. Policy makers in India have traditionally pushed for a cereal heavy vegetarian diet on a meat-eating population as a way of providing cheapest sources of food.

The report says that legume consumption has traditionally been high in many cultures, such as India. Legumes are also expensive, provide low protein quality, are limited by poor digestibility and long cooking time. Often people consume watery legume gruel and that too, if it is available through the public distribution system, which is often erratic. They neither provide best quality proteins nor are they consumed in sufficient amounts.

Currently, food politics in India spearheads an aggressive new Hindu nationalism that has led to many of Indias meat eating minority communities being treated as inferior. Muslims, Christians, Dalits and Adivasis are overtly and covertly coerced into giving up their traditional foods to fit into a vegetarian Hindu identity.

Also read:Despite Nutrition Benefits, Most BJP States Keep Eggs out of Mid-Day Meals

The last two years have seen bitter political battles over provision of eggs, known to increase both taste and nutritional value, in the government supported school mid-day meal scheme.

While the Right to Food campaign, nutritionists, public health professionals and activists have argued in favour of eggs, religious organisations have labelled it a religious imposition, inspite of a majority of children accessing government schools being malnourished and from communities that traditionally eat eggs.

None of these concerns seem to have been appreciated by the EAT-Lancet Commissions representative Brent Loken, during the launch event at the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) headquarters in New Delhi on April 4,2019. At one point during the launch, Loken states:

Where should we be getting our protein from? Is it from animal source foods or is it from plant source foods? This is where I think India has got such a great example. A lot of the protein sources come from plants. So I think India has an example that they can show the world.

Likewise, EATs co-founder, professor Johan Rockstrom has insisted:

India can show the world how traditional diets high in seeds, nuts, vegetables, whole grains and legumes can provide sustainable nutrition without wrecking the planet.

But how much of a model for the world is Indias vegetarianism then? In the Global Hunger Index 2019, the country ranks102ndout of117, whereas data from the National Family Health Survey indicate that only 10% of the infants between 623 months are adequately fed.

As a result, no less than 38% of the children under five years are stunted. About one on five women and men are underweight, with a similar proportion being either overweight or obese, especially in urban settings.

Anaemia affects almost 60% of the children aged 6-59 months, more than half of the women between 15-49 years, and almost one on four men in that same age group. Subclinical vitamin A deficiency in preschool children is 62% and is closely associated with malnutrition and poor protein consumption. Hardly a model to be followed.

Children holding plates wait in a queue to receive food at an orphanage run by a non-governmental organisation on World Hunger Day, in Chennai May 28, 2014.Photo: Reuters/Babu/Files

So when EAT-Lancets food campaign islaunched in India, run by billionaires but claiming to speak for the worlds poor, it risks sanctioning and rationalising caste-based impositions that poor Indians reel under. In short, it offers another whip to beat already vulnerable communities.

A diet directed at the affluent West fails to recognise that in low-income countries undernourished children are known to benefit from the consumption of milk and other animal source foods, improving anthropometric indices and cognitive functions, whilst reducing the prevalence of nutritional deficiencies as well as morbidity and mortality.

Or that, in India, bone fracture and shorter heights in India have been associated with lower milk consumption. Importantly, traditional livestock gets people through difficult seasons, prevents malnutrition in impoverished communities, and provides economic security.

Also read:India Ranks 102 Out of 117 Countries in Global Hunger Index

EAT-Lancet claimed its intention was to spark conversations among all Indian stakeholders. The conversation, however, was far from being sparked and the stakeholders were carefully narrowed down to yea-sayers.

Vocal critics of the food processing industry and food fortification strategies, such as the Right to Food campaign, have been left out of the debate along with the National Institute of Nutrition, the 100-year old government nutrition research body whose research points in favour of animal source foods.

But the most blatant omission may as well be the fact that Indias farmers were conspicuously absent.

The alacrity with which FSSAI is ready to promote and project the EAT-Lancet approach seems to subvert democratic consultation processes and to prefer instead the route of unilateral decision making, with the usual multinational businesses as their favourite bed-mates.

Could it be that critical voices are too much of a nuisance when it comes to endorsement of certain industrial agendas by the EAT foundation and its Indian backers? The manufacturing of a plant-based lifestyle is a highly lucrative one, with cheap materials such as pea protein extracts, starches, and plant oils at its base.

As a result, various business solutions have been worked out by such companies as Deloitte, in support of the Great Food Transformation and its associated partners of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development.

FSSAI has been embroiled in similar controversies with its scientific panel being populated with experts from the food and beverage industry. The organisation also promotes fortification of foods to the benefit of international firms in alliance with the events co-host, the Global Alliance for Improved Nutrition.

These schemes have been criticised, especially now that a Cochrane review has shown that fortification of rice makes little or no difference to addressing anaemia or vitamin A deficiency.

Rather than addressing chronic hunger and malnutrition through an improved access to wholesome and nutrient-dense foods, the government is thus opening the door for company-dependent solutions.

What is conveniently being ignored here are the environmental and economic cost of shifting tonnes of micronutrients from Western countries on a permanent basis, while at the same time destroying local food systems.

Dr. Sylvia Karpagam is a public health doctor and researcher working with the Right to Food and Right to Health campaigns in India.

Frdric Leroy is a professor of food science and technology, investigating the scientific and societal aspects of animal food products, writing in individual capacity.

Martin Cohen is a social scientist whose latest book I Think Therefore I Eat (2018) takes a philosophical and sociological look at food science and argues for a more holistic approach to food and health debates.

Continued here:
India is Not a 'Vegetarian Country' Like the EAT-Lancet Report Would Have Us Believe - The Wire

Recommendation and review posted by Alexandra Lee Anderson

7 Types Of Vegetarian Diets, Explained By A Nutritionist – Women’s Health

Once upon a time, being a vegetarian was pretty black and white. You didnt eat meat, and that was that. These days, though, there seem to be 50 different shades of vegetarianism.

Theres more of an emphasis now on plant-based diets, and a lot of people want to explore different degrees of this, says Jessica Cording, RD, author of The Little Book of Game-Changers: 50 Healthy Habits For Managing Stress & Anxiety. Thats why were seeing more people interested in different types of vegetarian diets versus just being straight-up vegan or vegetarian.

The flexibility element is crucial. Its a key factor in how satisfied people are going to feel," Cording says. "We like to feel like we have a choice over what were eating. Taking a diet thats traditionally limited, like being a vegetarian, and making it your own can help you feel like youre still able to live a happy, balanced life while staying on an eating plan that supports your goals, Cording explains.

Of course, though, that can get confusing AF for everyone else.

Heres what you need to know about the most popular types of vegetarianism, so youre not left scrambling the next time a flexitarian, pescatarian, or any other type of vegetarian shows up for dinner.

Cording calls this version of vegetarianism the safest because it offers the most flexibility. A flexitarian diet is plant-based, meaning plant foods take center stage, but allows dieters to incorporate meat and other animal products here and there when the mood strikes.

Its great for somebody who is either new to the idea of eating a more plant-based diet or wants to reduce their intake of animal products without going all-in, Cording says. It can also be helpful if youre super busy and dont have a lot of time or resources to plan meals ahead of time, she says.

Pescatarians are people who choose to eat a mostly plant-based diet, but who also incorporate seafood as a source of protein (since they don't eat meat). Many pescatarians also eat dairy and eggs.

This tends to be good for somebody who wants to be primarily vegetarian but still loves fish or wants the nutritional benefits of fish, says Cording, who thinks pescatarianism makes covering your nutritional bases easier than traditional vegetarianism.

Pescatarians just need to be careful to limit their intake of mercury-heavy fish like swordfish and yellowfin tuna, Cording says. Instead, the FDA recommends opting for at least two to three servings of low-mercury seafood, like anchovies, shrimp, and salmon, per week.

One of the most popular (and traditional) forms of vegetarianism: lacto-ovo vegetarianism. Lacto-ovo vegetarians avoid meat, fish, and poultry, but still eat animal products like dairy and eggs.

This is right for someone who wants to be primarily vegetarian but not full-on vegan, Cording says, who finds lacto-ovo vegetarianism to be pretty approachable.

Still, if you notice that youre feeling tired or aren't satiated after your meals, take a closer look at your overall intake to make sure youre getting all the nutrients (like protein!) you need, says Cording.

One step beyond lacto-ovo vegetarians are lacto vegetarians, who eat a plant-based diet and dairy products, but avoid meat, seafood, and eggs. Yep, that means you can have plenty of milk, cheese, butter, and ice cream on this one.

Though many people do well on a lacto-vegetarian diet, Cording recommends keeping tabs on your dairy intake to make sure you dont OD on it. Otherwise, you might end up bloated and constipated.

While ovo vegetarians dont eat meat, seafood, or dairy products, they do eat eggs and products that contain eggs. Though not as popular as lacto-ovo vegetarian diet or even lacto vegetarian diets, this eating style does offer some flexibility, Cording says.

If you go this route, make sure your eggs are organic to lower your exposure to antibiotics and pesticides, she says.

While pollo means chicken in Spanish, pollo vegetarians typically incorporate multiple forms of poultry, like turkey and duck, into their otherwise plant-based diet. While pollo vegetarians avoid other forms of meat, they may or may not choose to incorporate seafood, eggs, and dairy into their diet.

Its really similar to a flexitarian diet, Cording says. Just do your best to eat organic chicken to reduce your exposure to antibiotics on this one.

Vegan

The least flexible of the vegetarian diets is veganism. The whole diet is plant-based, Cording says. Vegans don't eat any animal products, including meat, fish, poultry, dairy, and eggs.

Since vegan diets tend to be high in fiber and low in saturated fat, they can support heart health, says Cording. However, vegan diets are pretty restrictive and require more planning than other forms of vegetarianism. It can also be harder to feel satisfied, initially, especially if you're used to eating animal products, she says.

If you plan to go vegan, Cording recommends taking special care to ensure you get enough protein, iron, calcium, omega-3 fatty acids, and vitamin D.

More:
7 Types Of Vegetarian Diets, Explained By A Nutritionist - Women's Health

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China perfected fake meat centuries before the Impossible Burger – CNN

Beijing (CNN) When 29-year-old Wang Jianguang was growing up in a poor neighborhood in China's northern Shanxi province, his family would buy him chicken wings with soy sauce as a rare treat.

Except they weren't actually made of chicken. The wings were an intricate combination of soybeans and peanuts. "They looked just like chicken wings, though," Wang said.

It was his first encounter with China's centuries-old tradition of imitation meat dishes.

A vegetarian sweet and sour "pork" dish at Green Veggie restaurant in Sheung Wan, Hong Kong.

Paul Yeung/South China Morning Post/Getty Images

Possible before Impossible

In the past few years, demand for fake meat products has surged in the Western world, as people seek environmentally sustainable and healthier alternatives to red meat.

But long before the first plant-based patties hit the grill in the West, China had been sculpting and flavoring traditional meat-based dishes out of mushrooms, nuts and vegetables.

"It shadows and parallels Chinese cuisine ... it is incredibly diverse and in every part of the country you have a different version," said food writer Fuschia Dunlop.

Wang now works at a restaurant called Baihe Vegetarian in the traditional hutong alleyways of Beijing's Dongcheng district. They serve a huge range of fake meat dishes -- pork spare ribs, dumplings, kung pao chicken.

The restaurant's owner Liu Hongyan said between 80 and 100 people regularly visit her restaurant each day and the number is rising.

"I think more and more people are embracing vegetarian culture. People are considering their health," she said. "There's too much fat and oil in red meat," she said.

Perfect imitation

A central tenet of Buddhism is respect for all living creatures, and vegetarianism is common among its followers. Dunlop said that while China's monasteries provided a strict vegetarian diet, they would often have to accommodate for the dietary choices of visiting pilgrims or patrons.

"[The visitors] would expect [meat-based] meals and this was where the tradition came from. You'd get all the dishes you'd expect to eat at a banquet, but made from vegetarian ingredients."

Chinese Buddhist vegetarian food became "extraordinarily sophisticated" in the centuries after the Han Dynasty, according to Dunlop.

"In the larger monasteries ... people could dine on grand dishes of "shark's fin," "abalone" and other delicacies cunningly fashioned from vegetable ingredients," Dunlop wrote in her book "Food of Sichuan."

A Chinese "fish" dish made from vegetarian ingredients, including a faux fish skin.

Alamy

Today, she said the widespread influence of imitation meat can be seen in the range of dishes offered. In Shanghai, you can eat stir-fried "crabmeat" made from mashed potato and carrot. In Sichuan, restaurants offer traditional "twice-cooked pork" made without a scrap of meat.

"Everyone in Shanghai eats vegetarian "roast duck" or "goose," which is made from layers of thin tofu skin, which are flavored and then deep fried so that it has a golden skin like the real dish," Dunlop said.

"Some people are quite worried about the source of the meat, but don't want to lose that taste," Dunlop explained.

Peanuts, lotus and yam

Wang takes great pride in creating his wide range of fake meat dishes at Baihe Restaurant.

In his kitchen, he carefully shapes a single, large king oyster mushroom into small cubes which will soon become vegetarian "kung pao chicken."

Adding flour, oil, cashews and sugar, among other ingredients, the mixture is tossed into a boiling hot wok. The final piping-hot product has the signature sweet-but-savory taste, with a consistency similar to the meat it's intended to mimic.

According to Wang, in recent years industrialization has meant much of China's fake meat comes from factories rather than being made in kitchens. He makes all his dishes by hand.

"For example, for pork ribs, the bone is made from lotus root, while the meat is made from potato, mushrooms and peanut protein," Wang said. He said the ribs need to sit overnight before they're ready to be served.

While both Wang and owner Liu are aware of Western fashions in fake meat, they're both dismissive of the trend. For them, the original Chinese version is more sophisticated.

"Chinese vegetarian food is more complicated than the Western version. It has more forms, more tastes. The Western version is simple," Wang said.

"I feel like Westerners only eat burgers and steaks."

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China perfected fake meat centuries before the Impossible Burger - CNN

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Burger King’s Impossible Whopper Is the First Step on the Road to State-Enforced Vegetarianism – Washington Examiner

Burger Kings new Impossible Whopper worries me.

Why? Ill get to that, but first, some explanation. For those who have yet to be assaulted by the hype campaign, an Impossible Whopper is a hamburger with a meatless patty, relentlessly advertised as tasting every bit as toothsome as a garden-variety beef burger.

How do they do it? Burger King isnt telling, but Impossible Foods, the company that supplies the Impossible Whopper, is. The key to making Impossible meat is producing a substance called heme in a laboratory. Were told that heme is naturally occurring and is what makes meat taste like meat. But it is found in plants too and just needs to be isolated.

Heres how the Impossible people describe their process: We started by extracting heme from the root nodules of soybean plants, but we knew there was a better way. So we took the DNA from these soy plants and inserted it into a genetically engineered yeast.

This, one might imagine, could pose a conundrum for woke foodies. On the one hand, they have a way around meat and the industrialized slaughter it entails without having to accept the interminable tedium of eating kale, sprouts, and quinoa. But on the other hand, were talking about taking genes from soy plants and splicing them into genetically modified yeast. GMO, OMG!

Who would have thought something as mundane as a fast-food hamburger could encapsulate a generations cognitive dissonance? In the Impossible Whopper, we see the clash of two irreconcilable impulses: the devoted belief in anything labeled science and the enduring suspicion that science is a mysterious menace.

Burger Kings advertising has been telling us that the Impossible Whopper tastes just like a Whopper. And so, in the spirit of empirical science and discovery, I ventured to a Burger King this week to test the claim.

I found myself at a sticky linoleum table with two burgers on a tray. I started with a bite of the regular Whopper. If there was any beef in the bite, I wouldnt know, overwhelmed as I was by the flavors of bun, mayo, lettuce, mayo, pickle, mayo, ketchup, mayo, mayo, tomato, and mayo.

It was immediately clear to me why it was possible to have a meatless Whopper that tastes like a Whopper the beef is buried under a pile of salad gloppy with mayo. A bite of the Impossible Whopper proved the point.

But what about the meat substitute? How did it taste in isolation? Again, first I tried the actual Whopper, clearing away the salad to get a bite of plain burger patty. It had that tired, desiccated, cardboardy quality that is the hallmark of fast-food beef. And indeed, the Impossible Whopper patty succeeded in matching the regular one, low bar that that may be.

But on second bite, it was clear that the meatless meat was a product of the laboratory. The texture was dense and slightly spongy, not unlike tofu that has been dried and compressed. And the faux-meat flavor gave way to a curious chemical aftertaste. Nice try, Impossible Foods, but the meatless patty is to beef as a baked brisket drenched in Liquid Smoke is to actual wood-smoked BBQ.

And so I neednt let the Impossible Whopper worry me.

Why was I concerned in the first place? Because if synthetic meat succeeds at approximating the real thing, it wont be long before it isnt just an option but the only option. Why tolerate the abattoir when soybeans can be sacrificed rather than cows? Once meat-substitute is widely used, one day we will wake up to discover that activists have convinced regulators to outlaw the consumption of actual animal flesh.

Rib-eye steak, say hello to the plastic straw.

But not yet. Not yet because Impossible meat isnt quite good enough. It isnt exactly nasty, but it isnt nearly the sort of plausible substitute needed to provide cover for a campaign to impose government-enforced vegetarianism.

Still, watch out, because the synthetic stuff is bound to get better. Its not impossible.

Eric Felten is the James Beard Award-winning author of How's Your Drink?

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Burger King's Impossible Whopper Is the First Step on the Road to State-Enforced Vegetarianism - Washington Examiner

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