Wednesday, December 16, 2009

You've Come a Long Way Monty!

John Montagu, the Fourth Earl of Sandwich did not want to interrupt his poker game for a meal, nor did he want to get his fingers greasy while eating meat at the card table. He asked his servant for a slice of roast beef placed between pieces of bread. Voila.

I would often get the urge for a large Italian hero sandwich, or some other assortment of cold cuts. The rational goes that it is far superior to a cheeseburger in the health department. A quick look at some data shows a popular sandwich chain's 6" cold cut combo sandwich has 17 grams of fat, 7g of saturated fats, and 55 mg of cholesterol. Looking at a hamburger from a popular chain has 42 grams of fat, 13g of sat. fat, and 85 mg of cholesterol.

So, sure, the burger is less healthy, but I would normally eat the foot long sandwich anyway. However, if you want the same low fat and sat. fat, with zero cholesterol, and no artificial colors or preservatives, fake meat would work. These meats (made with Water, wheat gluten, sunflower oil & vegetable fat, soya protein, wheat fibre, flavourings, salt, yeast extract, sugar, thickener: carrageenan, malt extract & onion powder) are for people who don't eat meat, but would like the taste and texture, and remembrance of eating meat. Kind of like drinking non-alcoholic beer.

Now, meat is a funny thing. We want it fresh, so a meat that looks different in color can be scary. I tried some last night. As with all vegan "fake" meat and fish there is the psychological factor. You know it is not meat, and there is nothing you can do to trick yourself otherwise.

However, the "Beef Style" cold cuts I had last night tasted kind of like turkey on its own. The texture was a little different from regular meat, as was the color. However, I slapped them on some wholewheat bread with mustard, and I was happy enough munching away at my new sandwich. I also had some vegan Gouda cheese which was pretty good too. Now, this fake meat and cheese, according to my palate, does not taste exactly like the real thing, but if you want to go meat and dairy free, you will be just fine eating these! Remember the first time you tried Diet Coke?

I was with two friends last night who had not seen me since November 1st, so it was great to get their reactions and encouragement. Also, I ran into a couple I had not seen in a bit and they were quite complimentary of the effort as well. The effusiveness of the compliments, and encouragement is proving my point -- for a guy like me to go vegan (and throw in no drinking for good measure) is so radical that it prompts hours of conversation and inquiries. When people talk about living healthier it is only a good thing. The really cool part is that the amount weight lost is not the focus, rather the lifestyle change. Almost to a person someone says that they should adjust their diet a bit.

I have no problem being the poster boy of over-indulgence going down the straight and narrow since it seems to motivate people.

This morning I put a wool suit on (it's 31 degrees with a windchill of 21). But I bought it a while ago, and it was always way too tight in the trousers. So much so that there was a crease around waist of the trousers were my fat-ass, disgusting stomach spilled over.

Ahhh, fits like a glove now!


Anonymous said...

great job, terry!
hey...have you tried 'dr. praeger's veggie burgers'? they are so YUMMY!! i have them all the time, and i'm not a vegetarian!

erin m.

Terrence said...

Thanks Erin!

I have some good veggie burgers of my own. Stay tuned, I will be letting people know about the brand I have been using soon.