Posts Tagged ‘vegetarian’
- High levels of phytic acid in soy reduce assimilation of calcium, magnesium, copper, iron and zinc. Phytic acid in soy is not neutralized by ordinary preparation methods such as soaking, sprouting and long, slow cooking. High phytate diets have caused growth problems in children.
- Trypsin inhibitors in soy interfere with protein digestion and may cause pancreatic disorders. In test animals soy containing trypsin inhibitors caused stunted growth.
- Soy phytoestrogens disrupt endocrine function and have the potential to cause infertility and to promote breast cancer in adult women.
- Soy phytoestrogens are potent antithyroid agents that cause hypothyroidism and may cause thyroid cancer. In infants, consumption of soy formula has been linked to autoimmune thyroid disease.
- Vitamin B12 analogs in soy are not absorbed and actually increase the body’s requirement for B12.
- Soy foods increase the body’s requirement for vitamin D.
- Fragile proteins are denatured during high temperature processing to make soy protein isolate and textured vegetable protein.
- Processing of soy protein results in the formation of toxic lysinoalanine and highly carcinogenic nitrosamines.
- Free glutamic acid or MSG, a potent neurotoxin, is formed during soy food processing and additional amounts are added to many soy foods.
- Soy foods contain high levels of aluminum which is toxic to the nervous system and the kidneys.
LiivToday.com rounded out Thanksgiving week — aka Gobbler week — in New York with more than a few savory bites.
*Caution: Pigs, cows, deer, fish, boars, turkeys and lambs were harmed in the making of these meals.*
At Andrew Carmellini’s Locanda Verde, touted in this month’s Food & Wine magazine for its affordable and tasty cuisine, the hubs and I started off the night with Burrata, a creamy Mozzarella with peperonata, puntarelle and fried rosemary. Next up was a new twist on the classic Italian meatball: Lamb meatball sliders with caprino and cucumber (one of Mr. Meat and Potatoes’ favorite dishes of the trip). We shared two pastas for our main course: a gamey Stracci with wild boar ragu, cocoa and fiore di sardo, and “My Grandmothers’ Ravioli,” a traditional dish with pork and beef in a tangy marinara.
After a cocktail at Brandy Library (and another at Hotel Gansevoort), we headed to the East Village for some late-night tubular meaty goodness at Crif Dogs. My beau opted for a naturally smoked House Dog with traditional accoutrements, while I dug into the Spicy Redneck — a bacon-wrapped house dog with chili, cole slaw and jalapenos. Washing down our dogs with a couple of cold Pabst Blue Ribbon brews, we hiked uptown to Artichoke Basilles Pizza on 14th Street for a slice and the bar’s only offering: a super gulp Budweiser.
It was a good day.
Understandably, we got a late start on Thanksgiving morning, lounging with a bagels and cream cheese while catching the Macy’s Parade on the tube (staking out territory along the parade route at 5:30 a.m. was not on the agenda). We skipped lunch and did some sightseeing before heading to Swifty’s for a three-course prix fixe dinner on the Upper East Side: corn chowder for the hubs, oysters on the half-shell for moi, followed by free-range turkey with stuffing, brussels sprouts, cranberry dressing and a couple slices of pie for each of us.
Enter turkey coma.
On Friday, we encountered one of the best meals of the trip at Momofuku Noodle Bar on the lower east side. We bellied up to the minimalist bar and watched the culinary dance in the open kitchen beyond, drooling impatiently until our meal arrived: Two orders of steamed pork buns (pocket-sized pork-belly heaven) and a bowl to share of Momofuku ramen with pork shoulder, pork belly and a poached egg.
Isn’t everything better with a poached egg?
That night, high on sodium, we had no more room in our tummies for another meal. Alas, we had one of our most highly anticipated reservations: Daniel, the four-star flagship restaurant of celebrity chef Daniel Boulud.
After a glass of champagne, I started with the market-fresh sauteed foie gras, while the hubs ordered up the Butter Poached Abalone with yellow curry braised greens, crispy rice and chayote. Next up for me was the Slow-Baked Dover Sole with smoked pepper, butternut squash, barberries and brown butter jus, and a few bites of my man’s Pan-Seared Millbrook Venison Loin with barley ragout, Okinawan sweet potato, roasted foie gras and pickled quince. Dessert brought a Spiced Poached Pear with hot chocolate sauce, almond frangipane and Earl Grey ice cream for moi, and Warm Guanaja Chocolate Coulant with liquid caramel, fleur de sel and milk sorbet for my beau.
It was an experience to savor, but the sheer volume of our consumption was beginning to catch up with us. We managed to stuff ourselves into our coats and decided to walk the 11 blocks to Boulud’s Bar Pleiades for a nightcap on 76th. We figured the walk ought to have worked off about one bite apiece, which was a good start.
On our final day in the city, we followed the advice of a good friend and stopped into J.G. Melon for a cheeseburger and cottage fries before hailing a cab to LGA and rolling onto our plane back to PBIA… and back to reality.
And so the meaty moral debate goes on.
Was it instinct or homicide when cavemen first hunted beasts for meat and made clothing from their skins? Surely it is inhumane to create life through farming only to take it away for slaughter… But without constant visual reminders about the origins of our food, it’s easy to remove ourselves from the farm-to-table process. I’m not closed to the possibility of an all-veggie diet, but as long as there’s four-star food in New York, it’s going to take a lot more than one documentary to turn me.
I feel like I’ve overhauled my entire life in the past six months. I went from “I don’t care” to “I’m obsessed,” and I did it in a slow, step-by-step way that was realistic for someone who reeeeeaaaalllly likes food and wine. I was feeling really good about myself for a few months.
First, I stopped buying cheese to keep in the house. I weaned myself off Diet Coke, substituting green tea and coffee. Then, I weaned myself off caffeine entirely because the green tea and coffee killed my stomach. I stopped drinking alcohol of any kind on the weekdays. I gave up meat.
I had a little too much Champagne on a Saturday and ordered an amazing filet mignon and lobster tails at The Flagler Steakhouse.
I realized you can’t change Rome in a day, and I slowly reintroduced organic meats — mostly fish — back into my diet. I also realized I was celebrating too much on the weekends and tossed the no-weekday-wine rule in favor of balance.
All the while, I rode my bike all over creation, did yoga an average of three times a week, and walked to Palm Beach from my house regularly.
In almost three months, I lost a whopping 5 pounds. 5 pounds! My doctor would love me to lose 20 more! I may not develop a brain tumor from Aspartame or grow a moustache from nasty meat hormones, but I’m still no Skinny Bitch!
I was so disheartened that I went completely AWOL on my diet and exercise for a week or so. And when I didn’t gain any weight eating and drinking whatever I wanted, I was even more frustrated with how hard I had worked for such little return.
But giving up and being fat is not the answer, unfortunately.
So last week I took my first spinning class at 180 Degree Fitness at 6101 S. Dixie Highway in West Palm Beach. I’ve never been much of a gym person (hence the need for weight loss), so this was a pretty big step for me. And it wasn’t that bad! The music was loud, and there was a rock-hard blonde yelling at me to KICK IT UP!, but there were no legwarmers, no pervy guys watching through a glass window.
I definitely wasn’t as hard core as the other gals in the class — who all-but-literally danced circles around me as I struggled to just keep peddling the entire hour — but I have potential, and I could see catching the bug. The key now will be to prioritize a 6 p.m. exercise class over whatever social event might be taking place at the same time. We’ll see…
The response following my review of the “Earthlings” documentary has been so enlightening. There are so many passionate people on this little planet of ours, and also so many realists to play devil’s advocate. As long as there is suffering, there will be debate. But there will also be hope.
Thanks so much to those of you who have brought to light for me the questionable regulations behind organic farming. The Sunday after I watched Earthlings, I spent three hours between three grocery stores — Costco, Publix and Whole Foods — and found that the organic meat offerings were few and far between anyway. The butcher cases are full of antibiotic-free, vegetarian-fed meats, but none certified organic that I could see. None of the meats in the Greenwise section of Publix are actually organic, nor are they free of all chemicals. The words classifying these meats are a dance around reality. A warm blanket to help us feel better about what is still likely a poor choice.
What difference would the USDA organic certification make in any case? Doesn’t a free-range chicken still have its beak burnt off to prevent it from pecking its cellmates? How much “free range” do they get? Are the birds still starved to promote molting? And doesn’t a fat and happy organic cow still have to die at some point before it’s carved up and delivered to our plates? What does that process look like?
And then there is the food chain. The natural order of life. Animals eat animals. Man created tools to improve this process. Does that make man more or less violent than the mother lioness who takes down a gazelle with her teeth to feed her cubs? Or even the geckos who tongue-lashes the moths that buzz around our porch lights?
It is in our nature to hunt. To gather. To thrive. But it is also in our nature to know better.
For me, the jury is still out.
Disclaimer: I’ve just prepared a delightful vegetarian meal — Ina Garten’s Lemon Fusilli with Arugula — and I’ve consumed the accompanying two bottles of 2005 Sonoma County Merlot (with a little help from my husband). So excuse my dreamy pondering, but I’m weighing the virtues of vegetarianism. Sure, I’ve dabbled – from 1995 to 1997 or so. But my one-teen enviro-movement came to a crashing halt over dinner at a neighborhood Longhorn Steakhouse, during which my older brother’s taunts became too much to bear. To be fair, he was my sole role model and inspiration, having raised me from age 12 until my freshman year at University of Florida. Our relationship is based on sarcasm and will-bending — is there any other way? — and so, wanting to be cool for his 20-something friends, I caved. One medium-rare prime rib, please.
Obviously one of the most earth-friendly activities one could pursue would be to take it easy on your fellow fauna by, well, not eating them. But why? After all, the three little piggies are just so gloriously yummy. Plus, the powers that be are shouting PROTEIN! from the rooftops. Can’t get much more protein-rich than from a blood-red New York strip, or maybe Azul chef Clay Conley‘s “steak and egg” appetizer, which tops beef carpaccio with a crispy, truffle-scented egg yolk. Nutrient-rich, to be sure — though this gal wasn’t exactly dropping for a set of pushups following our Saturday night dinner.
Do we really even need meat? Veggies — and though one of my greatest comforts is a medium-rare fillet mignon from the Palm Beach Grill, I count several good friends among the non-meat-eating set — say we’re all overdosing on protein by the time we down the Activia (more on that later), hummus and black bean soup.
Either way, I am farily certain this gal is nowhere near boycotting the meat. And it’s not just the vino talking. Mama had a ridiculous dinner of coldwater oysters, followed by a trio of Moroccan-inspired lamb — braised, plus grilled chop and loin — at the aforementioned Mandarin Oriental eatery, and I’m not quite sure I understand the difference between chowing down on a sweet-faced, wooly mammal versus a graceful, overfished Swordfish.
Care to enlighten me? Veggies, sound off. Controversy is most welcome.