Monday, September 7, 2009

Meatless Monday!

Szechuan Tofu Triangles with Triple Pepper Sauce

Talking with a few people and reading some stuff online has influenced me to try to make a change in the meals I eat during the week.  My college friend Heather, at Running Leaner and Greener, as embarked on a mission called Simple Changes September - little things to do to improve ones health and eco-friendliness.  Now, I'm not an environmentalist by any stretch, but I do my small part here and there (reusable Sigg water bottles and lunch bags, reusable grocery bags, not driving an SUV, etc).  I asked myself - what little change can I do?  My answer?  Meatless Mondays.

Not so little of a change!.  Pretty much everyone who knows me knows there's not much more I enjoy than cooking and eating meat of all kinds.  Really, if I wasn't meant to eat animals, then I wouldn't be genetically predisposed to thinking that they are so damn tasty.  I'm especially partial to all things pork, pig being the magical animal that practically every part is edible.  Even though Steph and I eat a good share of chicken and seafood, there's not much better to me than a delicious pork chop or rib-eye.

Why make a change?  As silly as it sounds, it all comes back to being a teacher, the need to model positive behaviors and make good choices as an example to my students.  Being a public school teacher, I see firsthand the problems faced overweight children, the extreme eating habits (by both the grossly overweight and underweight) and the generally poor choices that my students make when it comes to food.  I can use this choice for a Meatless Monday to live healthier myself, and so in the end I can talk to my students how small changes in their own lives can benefit not only themselves, but others as well.  (Wow, I'm such a cheeseball.)

Lastly, I'm looking at this as a challenge to myself.  While my palate has grown by leaps and bounds as I've gotten older, I'm still very picky when it comes to my vegetables, and there are plenty of veggies out there that I still don't eat.  Doing the Meatless Monday is going to give me incentive and an avenue to try new recipes and find dishes in which I'll be able to (hopefully) learn to like some of those elusive veggies.  Currently, I think eggplant is at the top of my list.

So tonight, I made sauteed tofu triangles, stir fried with onions, peppers, and a nice sauce of honey, soy and garlic.  I've got to tell you - damn tasty!  Everything worked well, and I was satisfied with the texture of the extra-firm tofu, which held up in the cooking.  I'd definitely make this one again, although I'd cut the tofu into cubes and cut the peppers into uniform chunks as well, as opposed to strips and triangles.  Steph and I are off to a good start!

Next week, I'm thinking it's almost autumn, so that means it's time for the fungi to shine.  However, anyone out there have any real tasty meatless recipes they can share?  If something catches my eye, I'll definitely make it!


Ms. Meg said...

Great job! You know, if you want to do a lazy meatless monday, you can make veggie quesadillas. Do it quick while avocados are still around and you can make a little guac. Want my salsa recipe?