When my boyfriend first told me he was a vegan, a whole mess of things ran through my head. Does that mean we’ll never get to go out to dinner together? Is he going to flip when I show up to his house on a Sunday afternoon smelling like bagels and lox? Are we going to go to PETA protests on dates, and is he going to sneak gory slaughterhouse pamphlets into my purse after I talk about jonesin’ for bacon?
Like a lot of college girls, I had been a vegetarian about 15 times by the time I’d met my boyfriend. I gave up meat in high school to freak out my parents, and I gave it up in college to lose weight, then later to impress the chain-smoking anti-war coalition kids that I wanted to hang out with.
Despite my good intentions, however, it never really stuck. The cafeteria had zero veggie options, and I was lazy — not to mention a sucker for carne asada. To boot, I had a pretty superficial understanding of what veganism is; like a lot of people, I thought all vegans were misanthropic skinny kids with social problems. Then I met John.
He’s not skinny, nor is he a killjoy. In fact, he can eat an entire pint of (soy) ice cream in the time it takes me to find a spoon. He loves food, and when we cook dinner together, veganism is never a limitation to our creativity. Since we’ve been together, I’ve cut out all meat, eggs, and dairy — at first out of convenience, since we moved in together, and then, when I realized how incredibly healthy I felt, and how happy I was to cut myself out of the whole icky institution of factory farming, I kept with it out of conviction.
Sure, I occasionally get an itch for something verboten (and, like a lot of vegans, I “cheat” every once in a while — err, balance is important, after all), but not as much as you’d think. I used to think there was no way I could live without cheese, but I’m doing swimmingly without it.
The political side of it is really important, and it’s become a huge part of being vegan for me, but I’m not here to gross you out with pictures of de-beaked chickens, or to tell you that factory farming is the number one cause of global warming in the U.S. (whoops, too late!). You can learn about that stuff yourself if you’re interested — here’s an awesome, easy-to-read summary. Instead, I want to send you off with something way more fun: really cute vegan cook guys.
Alex Brown and Evan George are former line-cooks that live in Los Angeles. Apart from being dreamy, they’re incredible cooks, and they post all their inventions on their blog, Hot Knives: home-made seitan, beer-batter pancakes, deep-fried beets, and a veggie breakfast sandwich that will have you drooling before you even read the ingredients.
Got any other vegan recipes or questions?