March 10, 2012

Meatball Subs for Vegetarians - Sounds Like a Support Group

"Meatball Subs for Vegetarians" sounds like a support group.

I suppose for new vegetarians it might be. Personally, I don't remember the taste of red meat, after all it's been 20 years. On top of that, I don't really want to remember the taste of meat. In fact, faux meat products generally gross me out, especially the "hamburger crumble" kinds. Yick. I don't know, maybe they're too close to what I think red meat would be and that's what's grossing me out? Although I'm pretty sure anyone who actually eats meat would argue that they taste nothing like it. Who knows. I'm a vegetarian because in addition to not being down with the industrial farming/meat process, I also just straight up don't like meat.

That being said, I really like Quorn Meatballs. I'm pretty sure I've spoken about how much I like Quorn chicken, but Quorn meatballs are a new favorite in our household. I always consider it a huge success when Tony likes vegetarian dinners as much as I do. So the fact that when I came home from yoga tonight and Tony had already made up some Quorn meatball subs I was super excited. Okay, yes I was happy he liked them, but I admit I was more happy to come home from 90 minutes of yoga and a 40 minute drive to see that dinner was already done. Score. Oh, and he had cleaned the kitchen. Double Score.

Some people (like my friend Dolci) are not down with Quorn products because they think they have to be unhealthy. Or as Dolci puts it, she has "different ideas of what healthy is." While it's true that the majority of faux meat products require was more processing than meat, perhaps setting aside tofu and tempeh. I think it's important for vegetarian peeps to mix up their diet. I probably only eat meat substitutes once or twice a week. The rest of the time I rely on rice, beans, nuts and (soy free) protein powder.

There are a few reasons I avoid a super heavy soy protein diet:
  1. Soy is not the greatest food for people with interstitial cystitis, and can irritate symptoms.
  2. Soy is not the easiest to digest, although fermented soy products like tempeh are much easier than others.
  3. There's some concern about phyto-estrogens. Probably not an issue for most people, but the fact is just about everything already contains soy (kind of like how everything contains corn. So, in my opinion, if you're adding even more soy on top of that, you've got a pretty imbalanced food pyramid.
Okay, so am I totally off base here? What's your opinion on fake meat? On soy? On the fact that although everyone knows about our American diets being thoroughly permeated with corn they're also saturated with soy? Should I stop singing the praises of Quorn?

P.S. In case you didn't know, Quorn is primarily made with mycoprotein, which is mushroom derived. The rest of it's protein primarily comes from egg powder, which vegetarians are allowed to eat. Although some, like me, can eat eggs in food, we hate super eggy products or eggs on their ow.

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