I was speaking with a friend one day and he happened to mention that when he first met me, he didn’t think we were going to get along. He thought I was going to be one of those “I eat better than you and you should change” kind of people. Yet over time, he was nice enough to hear my views and realized, I have a reason for what I do that I’m not going to “push off” on other people. Turned out, while our views differ drastically on food, whenever my group of friends gets together to cook, it always turns out healthy and delicious.
After reading the article “Let’s put an end to ‘dietary tribalism’ on Grist,” I thought back to this space and what I really hope to accomplish.
I would never say vegetarianism is the end all, be all. I do it right now because it’s the best choice for me. I don’t eat fish because I live in a land-locked state where the only type of fish we get fresh is catfish. I don’t eat other meat because there aren’t a lot of sustainable meat producers around here and after awhile, I’ve lost my taste for most of it (plus, it’s a lot cheaper for me not to eat meat.)
This is all my choice and doesn’t have to be yours. In fact, I encourage you to explore all your options. I love that in the Grist article he states that we need to be more mindful of where our food comes from, who is growing it, and how they are growing it.
I think there are things that we can agree on. In general, we consume too much food and to take it a step further, we consume too much processed foods. There seems to be a disconnect between our food and our bodies. There are studies galore out there, each contradicting the other. It’s here that I think instead of listening to studies, we just need to listen to our body.
I’ve had readers email and ask why I’ve not tagged certain recipes as gluten-free or why I use honey when it would be so easy to make it vegan by not. To be honest, I forget because it’s not a priority for me. I’ll look back on a recipe and realize, “oh, that could easily be adapted to be vegan” or “oh, that was gluten-free.” I forget about labels because frankly, I just like good, simple foods filled with lots of veggies.
All in all, I hope you find inspiration within my blog and others like it. Whether it’s because you decided not eating meat was right for you or just because you want to incorporate a few more veggies in to your meal rotation. All of that is great.
Just do what is right for you.
Kale and Couscous with Green Garlic Dressing
I use Israeli Couscous for this recipe which is different from the item just labeled "couscous." The couscous used for this recipe is more pearled and is also known as Ptitim (toasted pasta shaped like rice). Regular couscous would work just fine as well.
- 1 cup kale, de-stemmed and shredded
- 1/2 cup Israeli Couscous, uncooked
- 1/2 cup chickpeas (drained, if using canned)
- 1/4 cup feta
- 2 Tablespoon Olive Oil
- 1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon honey
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2 Tablespoons green garlic (or 1/4 cup green onions)
- Place couscous in a pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer, and let cook until Cous Cous is tender, 5-8 minutes. Remove from heat and drain.
- While Couscous is cooking, Whisk together oil, vinegar, honey, and minced garlic. (you can also whiz the green garlic in the food processor and then add the other dressing ingredients.)
- Once cous cous is done cooking, toss with kale. Let sit until kale is slightly wilted. Add in dressing, feta, and chickpeas. Toss all together and serve.
- If you want it warm, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a pan. Add in chickpeas, cooking for 1-2 minutes until heated through. Add in Kale and cook until slightly wilted. Toss with Couscous and Dressing.
by Erin Alderson