Fake Meat: Great or Gross?

I became a vegetarian when I was nine, so I remember eating meat. I don’t feel like I “miss” it, and in fact I find the idea of eating meat completely unappealing. I do enjoy the occasional veggie burger or mock chicken, but if a meat substitute looks or tastes too much like meat, I get grossed out and can’t eat it.

 

Companies like Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat are making increasingly meat-like plant-based burgers and other meat substitutes. Granted, they are marketing to non-vegetarians as well, but will their efforts pay off? Will these products be meat-like enough for non-veggies? Will they be too meat-like for vegetarians?

 

What’s your take? Do you eat meat substitutes?

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What the Dairy Industry Doesn’t Want You to Know – Neal Barnard MD

Farming on a Rooftop | National Geographic

In New York City, farming on a rooftop is not just an idea. Brooklyn Grange farms more than two and a half acres of rooftops in Brooklyn and Queens, and then sells what it produces to New Yorkers. A special soil mixture is used to minimize weight on the roofs and allow rapid drainage during heavy downpours. The farmed rooftops also house chickens and an apiary.

Bosh: Creamy Cashew Carbonara

Pam Warhurst: How we can eat our landscapes

What should a community do with its unused land? Plant food, of course. With energy and humor, Pam Warhurst tells at the TEDSalon the story of how she and a growing team of volunteers came together to turn plots of unused land into communal vegetable gardens, and to change the narrative of food in their community.

Brian Skerry The ocean’s glory — and horror

The chocolate cake

It was a co-worker’s birthday and I confess that I had a little “revenge” in mind for those who keep making fun of me for being vegan.

I got a vegan chocolate cake – the actual one in the picture above – at an organic grocery store. After lunch, we all gathered around the birthday girl, sang, wishes were made, and slices of The Cake passed around. Everybody was asking me if the cake was vegan and I answered with a face as straight as possible and a little bit of laughter: “No way! I would never  do that to you guys!” They all loved the cake and I heard several: “OMG it’s so rich!” “This is delicious,” “Where did you get this cake?” “I need to go to this store to get this cake!”

Once all plates were empty, I asked: “So, how did you like the cake?” Everybody said they loved it! That’s when I told them that it was a vegan cake. Their facial expressions of disbelief were great. We all laughed a lot and it ended up being a fun and positive experience.

Of course, I don’t expect anybody to become vegan because of a slice of cake. But just opening a little door for the possibility of trying something new is already a victory.

My friends will remember the rich taste and texture of the soft mousse chocolate cake dissolving on their tongues, filling them with sweet oral sensations – an exceptional positive sensory experience.

On the other side of the spectrum, some vegans share images of suffering cows and chickens. Most people who watch animal cruelty videos, feel the negative impact of the shocking images on a deep level. They will try to block these images and remember a negative experience for a long time. I’m not saying these images should never be shared.

I agree: animal-cruelty must be denounced!

I just wonder how effective those images are when we are talking about embracing a vegan lifestyle.

Which experience will encourage more people to try vegan dishes?

Since I’m not into cooking, I look for vegan treats I can bring to parties or office potlucks. The same organic market where I got the cake, also offers vegan ice cream, vegan doughnut holes, as well as cute vegan cupcakes for all occasions.

Do you have any vegan dishes you enjoy sharing with your friends?

Chimps have feelings and thoughts. They should also have rights

Chimpanzees are people too, you know. Ok, not exactly. But lawyer Steven Wise has spent the last 30 years working to change these animals’ status from “things” to “persons.” It’s not a matter of legal semantics; as he describes in this fascinating talk, recognizing that animals like chimps have extraordinary cognitive capabilities and rethinking the way we treat them — legally — is no less than a moral duty.

How to grow a forest in your backyard

Forests don’t have to be far-flung nature reserves, isolated from human life. Instead, we can grow them right where we are — even in cities. Eco-entrepreneur and TED Fellow Shubhendu Sharma grows ultra-dense, biodiverse mini-forests of native species in urban areas by engineering soil, microbes and biomass to kickstart natural growth processes. Follow along as he describes how to grow a 100-year-old forest in just 10 years, and learn how you can get in on this tiny jungle party.

A plea for bees