The Way We Eat
Some time ago I decided that we were going to seriously cut back on our meat consumption. This revelation came to me while I was reading Animal, Vegetable, Miracle (highly recommended), and a bit before I saw the movie Food, Inc. but definitely solidified after I did (and you should see that btw, it's not propaganda in any way – just the presentation of information in a way that's valuable and important for all of us to know). This is not a hey I'm a tree-hugging hippie and I want to wear patchouli oil and hemp kind of thing but just a let me do my small little part in whatever way I can. Plus, eating less meat is good for you. So, since I do all of the cooking in my home I decided that 3 days a week we simply wouldn't eat any meat at all. Initially we shot for Monday, Wednesday and Friday but I'm being a lot more flexible about which days and how it's happening but it's still happening and it's a lot easier than you would probably think.
I once read something online (I think it was via Maura) about the structure of the American dinner plate and how hard it is for us to think outside of a plate being a meat, a vegetable and a starch. This is so true, particularly for me as the food preparer. A glance back at my dinner photos and I see that's mainly how I functioned and breaking that habit is difficult but not impossible.
There are a lot of points to be argued about the way that we eat and I am certainly not an expert or one to sit and really hash them out – but I like the way that things are unfolding in my home. I'm not going to stop eating meat, I like it – it tastes good. But eating less meat allows me to be more picky about the meat I do choose to put in my mouth and I'm okay with that. I might roll my eyes at paying $4 for a dozen of eggs, but I feel okay on some level knowing that my $4 eggs were chickens that lived the life a chicken should live. Of course, your mileage may vary.
Food is exciting and it should make us happy. At the end of the day we should feel good about the things we feed our families and ourselves. Eating well should not be a privilege.