Alright, alright I’m not going to lie. There was once a time when I may have had a nasty habit of mistaking the word vegan for pagan. (They sound kind of the same, right?) I saw vegans as mysterious and inexplicable creatures — the sort that went on pilgrimages to the mountains to perform ancient and unrecognizable rituals in the wee hours of the morning; but in August of 2010, I had an ah-ha moment. After years of enjoying BLT sandwiches, cheesecake and the Scottish delicacy of fish & chips, I made the switch to veganism.
There are lots of different reasons to go vegan and what initially intrigued me about veganism was actually the nutritional benefits of the diet. Now, I should say that not all vegan food is perfectly healthy. After all, vegan food still has calories and vegan sweets still have sugar. But eliminating dairy and meat from your diet can have lots of long-lasting health benefits such as reducing the risk of heart disease, various forms of cancer, diabetes and other health problems. In fact, though it sounds too good to be true, I must admit I do sleep better and run faster now that I’m vegan. Alas there’s no scientific proof for that but it’s just been my experience.
I won’t bog you down with the details too much – I’ll leave that to my little reading list. But, of course, it cannot be denied that the other motivation for becoming vegan is taking a stand against animal cruelty. The data, once you examine it, is extremely compelling. And really, once you’ve learned something, how can you unlearn it? Animals are not slaughtered humanely. And before they’re slaughtered, they’re extremely ill-treated. It’s a fact.
I don’t want to preach too much. There are plenty of fantastic omnivores in my life – family, friends, colleagues – and I spent the majority of my life up until now enjoying meat, dairy and the whole shebang. And it goes without saying that being vegan in Boston isn’t always easy. But for those of us who have made the switch, I think there needs to be a resource, especially in this city. Going vegan is a bit challenging but also very rewarding and I hope this site helps fellow vegans in Beantown as much as possible!
Also I should preface my blog by admitting that I am not a culinary expert in any sense of the word. All I know is what tastes good to me. I have no formal training, and as you will soon see, no formal vocabulary of culinary assessment, but I hope my observations help you!