The year begins with yet another lockdown and a spectrum of colors ranging from red to yellow, passing through shades such as “enhanced yellow”, for example, which are difficult to interpret. In this context, it is not easy to cope with news and fake-news. It has become impossible to make plans of any kind. Our limited freedom of movement results in a forced loneliness that could be experienced passively or exploited as an opportunity for growth. The things that can be done to fill the void left by the lack of social relationships are many and different e.g.:
you can take up a new hobby;
you can work out and take care of yourself;
you can learn or perfect a language;
you can learn how to make bread with time consuming methods, such as sourdough bread;
you can cook maybe trying new recipes;
you can devote time to something practical;
you can tidy up with the Marie Kondo method;
you can watch tons of documentaries;
you can search for sites to explore interests left behind, such as Philosophy, Art, and so on;
you can abandon old habits;
you can start something new related to values.
This list is my list actually, they are strategies that I have put in place in these months of forced isolation and, in fact, it has led to surprising and unexpected results. Last year, during an English lesson, the teacher suggested us to watch a couple of documentaries: “Cowspiracy” and “The Game Changers”, both on Netflix. In “Cowspiracy” the impact of the diet on the planet in terms of pollution and sustainability is well explained, without emphasizing the emotional implications, but rather by clearly exposinging data and consequences. In “The Game Changers”, on the other hand, the myth that to be strong and healthy it is necessary to consume proteins of animal origin is debunked. Pro athletes reveal that a totally plant-based diet not only works, but also improves their performance. Something clicked and I became vegan, with no regrets, as well as a natural consequence. I must say that I had been thinking about it for years with my son, then by not eating dairy products and gluten we were already on the right track, but we still had some hesitation, completely swept away by these two beautiful documentaries. And so here we are vegan and full of enthusiasm and also of questions. The husband, on the other hand, is an “accidental vegan”.
So what do we eat now?
Since I was a little girl I’ve always had a passion for cooking and the the first thing I baked – after many recipes and many failures – was a tart. Over the years I have followed several courses and attended the Altopalato cooking school. I must add that I am also very picky both in terms of health and nutritional values, and in terms of flavor. If a plate is not how it should be it is a tragedy. At home they call me Babette.
I had consolidated recipes, years of experience, famous and award-winning dishes, in short, an enormous heritage that, with the vegan choice, faltered. So the promise I made to myself was: vegan but with taste. I was determined to bring the culinary heritage that I had built, through gestures, times, marinades, doughs and perfumes, into this new adventure.
Now after a few recipes, some of which are very successful such as the tart, the stew and the vegan gluten-free lasagna, others definitely worth reviewing such as the vegan omelette, I can say that it can be done. I embraced this new chapter with the passion that distinguishes me, being at the beginning of this adventure I thought that successes and failures could be useful to those who, like me, want to take this step. There are many new ingredients to meet, with interesting names and even more surprising flavors, there are recipes waiting to be cooked, and there are many useful sites such as Vegolosi, while this recipe for vegan and gluten-free tart is from Beautifood blog, really good. It is no coincidence that this journey started with a tart.
Being vegan is a lifestyle that goes well with my strong interest in health, love for the environment and with my wabi sabi ceramics created without toxic substances and without ingredients of animal origin.