One of my friends recently came out as a vegetarian. I was so excited for her I went out and ate a falafel that night in an act of solidarity; vegetarians stand united! I know to the average passersby I was simply another twenty-something ferociously devouring a delicious falafel but what I was really doing was making a statement – with hummus on my face.
I have walked the path of lettuce leaves and soybean for a longtime now and, as you know, I’ve grappled with the possibility of flinging myself into veganism. The sheer idea of continuing my life without the delight cheese brings me is almost unbearable – how would I make it to thirty? Shit, I’m not sure I would make it until tomorrow afternoon.
I have trolled the vegan-eating blogs, skimmed the vegan-living cookbooks and perused some articles pertaining to ‘breaking the hold cheese has over your life’ but I can’t seem to move forward on my decision to, at the very least, try out the lifestyle. When I presented the idea to my mother she nearly cried and when I looked to my sister for support she verbally spit in my eye – they both expressed fear I would be eliminating one of my only sources of nourishment; cheese products.
I was shocked by their lack of faith in my resolutive abilities – mind you, I probably shouldn’t have been cutting pieces of cheese off a block of cheese and eating them while discussing such a drastic diet change. It probably did nothing to help my cause. Or later on that night when I slathered sour creme all over my veggie burger. It’s by a sheer act of god I am not seven hundred and forty-nine pounds.
But, when I’m not devouring cheese and clogging my arteries with sour creme, I’m enjoying a delicious black bean salad – which is totes vegan, if you didn’t know.
Take that, Mom.
Black Bean Salad
1 can black beans – rinse, drain and chill
1 mango, diced
1/2 green bell pepper, diced
1/2 yellow bell pepper, diced
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
1/4 cucumber, diced
2 tablespoons Olive Oil
2 teaspoons Red Wine Vinegar
1/4 teaspoon cilantro
salt to taste, of course
This recipe is super simple, throw everything into a bowl. Stir to mix. Chill for an hour to allow salad to marinate and reach the level of pure deliciousness. Then serve in cute little bowls. Your friends will think they stumbled into a home Martha built.
Though, if you wanted to nix the vegan part of the recipe, you could add crumbled goat cheese just before you serve.
And here, my friends, is the main reason I will die of a massive stroke caused by high cholesterol at twenty-eight – cheese.