Yet Another Cycling Forum

Off Topic => The Pub => Food & Drink => Topic started by: Wowbagger on October 17, 2018, 01:56:29 pm

Title: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Wowbagger on October 17, 2018, 01:56:29 pm
I'm trying to do this and I'm finding it very challenging.

The biggest part of the problem is that I have spent getting on for 65 years on this planet in which the vast majority of my main meals have had some sort of meat content. It's my comfort zone and I really enjoy eating meat. Not doing so involves a great deal of culinary creativity. Basically, Jan and I tend to prepare what our parents prepared food-wise, although I think we cook vegetables for less time. 3 veg, i meat variety, and that's the main meal. Very easy to prepare, tasty to eat. It seems to me that preparing vegetarian food involves a great deal more faff and the results are normally much less interesting.

Is anyone else tying to up their veggie ration to 2 days a week, with the hope of going further if it works?
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: pcolbeck on October 17, 2018, 02:36:04 pm
You need to stop trying to do traditional meals "just without meat" WoW. It really doesn't work well or at least is dull dull dull. Might not be too heathy either, you need to replace that protein (and other things) you got from the meat somehow.
Get an Indian or Middle Eastern cookbook. Loads of good tasty veggie recipes usually based on pulses of some kind or another. Learn to love the chickpea !

As I said in my other post you could also start using game. Rabbit is a nearly inexhaustible resource and cheap just find a butcher or game dealers where they can guarantee its wild not farmed. Venison as a treat occasional.  Also find a good butcher that does mutton from highland sheep, good for all those stews and tagines and just use less whist bulking the dish out with pulses.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Paul H on October 17, 2018, 05:01:25 pm
Simplest way to do it would be make no change to the frequency and reduce the quantity.  Then whatever meat you normally buy, spend the same on less.  Unless you're already buying from the best suppliers,  that'll compensate the reduced quantity with better quality, which in itself is likely to have been produced in a less environmentally harmful way.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: orienteer on October 17, 2018, 10:36:07 pm
Don't think I can give up meat either, but we eat fish twice a week, mainly oily ones such as sardines, mackerel, salmon, and have a vegetarian meal once. Fortunately Mrs O is a good cook, and can prepare many international cuisines. Tagine is very flexible and tasty with or without meat, and yesterday we had a butternut squash and halloumi cheese bake.

We have a box of organic vegetables every week, and it comes with suggested recipes for the seasonal veg therein. We use otherwise uneaten veg by making soup for lunch.

We try to stick to organic meat and make good use of it. Just as my mother used to do, we generally have a roast at weekends, eat the remainder cold on Monday, and make a third meal if there's still some left over, such as shepherds or cottage pie, or spring rolls from pork.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: bludger on October 17, 2018, 11:02:30 pm
I am trying to cut down for cost and environmental reasons. It will be hard to dump it altogether but I think I may do it one day (though I will always accept meat if it's been cooked for me anyway like at Christmas).

So far my best bets have been using less of it via using a "normal" amount of meat in a 'bulked out' meal which lasts a few days like a risotto and using off-cuts which would have been thrown in the bin anyway like kidneys and liver.

It is sobering when you really weigh up the impact of industrial agriculture. I was on a national trust working holiday a few years ago and the amount of work it took to look after SSSIs which were in danger of having artificially enriched soil from cow shit washed down the hillside by rain was a shock.

The way to go about it I find most efffective is to try more diverse and interesting vegetarian recipes. You can use effort saved from preparing meat to using different spices, herbs and whatnot with your veg. Give some vegetarian cookbook recipes inspired by Asian grub a go!
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: nikki on October 17, 2018, 11:43:48 pm
I've drifted away from meat in my home cooking since an exclusion diet last Winter felt like ALL MEAT ALL OF THE TIME.

Have yet to properly nail the protein levels (protein shakes on stand by as a fallback) but I've recently been exploring Jack Monroe's recipes, many of which happen to be vegan.

Poised to do a second vat of this one: https://cookingonabootstrap.com/2018/07/21/peach-chickpea-curry-recipe/
(which is very low on faff).
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Jaded on October 18, 2018, 02:00:33 am
The big challenge for the world is getting tired old dinosaurs to change their ways and to make tired old dinosaur thinking abhorrent.

The trouble is that dinosaur behaviour is looked up to and seen as aspirational.

As for modern farming, how many litres of diesel per tonne of crop?

The world will be saved by an appalling virus, not stopping eating meat.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: tonycollinet on October 18, 2018, 06:54:49 am
Since my son started dating a vegetarian (and none egg/onion/onion family but that is another story) we have had many delicious vegetarian meals.

It does require new knowledge on what/how to cook, but adaptation is possible. For example, this week we have been having a really nice red thai chicken curry. This has little chicken, and much veg - including squash. Frankly it would be just as nice without the chicken.

I do love meat though - and I'll never completely give up on burgers and steaks.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Ham on October 18, 2018, 07:29:27 am
The big challenge for the world is getting tired old dinosaurs to change their ways and to make tired old dinosaur thinking abhorrent.

The trouble is that dinosaur behaviour is looked up to and seen as aspirational.

As for modern farming, how many litres of diesel per tonne of crop?

The world will be saved by an appalling virus, not stopping eating meat.
In the context, that's a little unfair, you don't even know if Wow is tired. Plus he's actually asking how to change.

To answer the OP, it really depends on your openness to change, not so much in the theory (which is clearly there) but in the practice (which I suspect could be there, but is a matter of breaking habits) along with enthusiasm for cooking. There's no question in my mind that cooking a veggie meal takes a more effort than meat and two veg, but not necessarily that much more.

There are actually three parts to a successful change, in my view

- breaking the link between meant'n'two veg for a meal. Which really means breaking the habit of the meals you tend to have and finding that you can make and enjoy other ways of building a meal. No point doing any of this if you don't enjoy the alternatives as much as you do the originals, or even enjoy them more. Loads of stuff in cookery columns/websites that might give you a start there.

- reducing the meat used by choosing dishes that make it go a lot further by incorporating it with other stuffs. There's a whole area of rather good peasant cooking built around that.

- finding meals that you enjoy that have no meat, coincidentally rather than purposefully.

One way of doing it is looking at alternative food on the supermarket shelves (you do have a waitrose?) and either choosing that or using it as inspiration for something you cook at home.

Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: ian on October 18, 2018, 07:51:19 am
I think that's the main thing, just breaking the belief that a meal has to feature meat as its centrepiece. I was veggie for many years but even now, I don't have to have meat in a meal. It's not even a conscious thing. There's a zillion recipes that don't need meat. And when we do eat meat, we go for quality over quantity. Get the decent, ethically produced free-range/outdoor stuff rather than industrial BOGOF stuff from a slaughterfactory. Better for you, better(ish) for them.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: T42 on October 18, 2018, 09:30:11 am
Since my son started dating a vegetarian (and none egg/onion/onion family but that is another story) we have had many delicious vegetarian meals.

We used to have a tech at work who was shacked up with a proselytizing vegan. He wouldn't touch meat at our office in Paris, but when we had an installation to do in Portugal he shovelled down the steak like a starving dog then turned veggie on the last day so that she wouldn't smell it on him back home.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Jaded on October 18, 2018, 09:44:35 am
The big challenge for the world is getting tired old dinosaurs to change their ways and to make tired old dinosaur thinking abhorrent.

The trouble is that dinosaur behaviour is looked up to and seen as aspirational.

As for modern farming, how many litres of diesel per tonne of crop?

The world will be saved by an appalling virus, not stopping eating meat.
In the context, that's a little unfair, you don't even know if Wow is tired. Plus he's actually asking how to change.

To answer the OP, it really depends on your openness to change, not so much in the theory (which is clearly there) but in the practice (which I suspect could be there, but is a matter of breaking habits) along with enthusiasm for cooking. There's no question in my mind that cooking a veggie meal takes a more effort than meat and two veg, but not necessarily that much more.


 Yes, granted if taken in this context, but with the wider question of environmental impact, it is about getting a fast change in a lot of people who are resistant to it.

We have the first Vegan football club in the world in my town, and tired old dinosaurs have had a big struggle with it. Many have embraced it and i have to say the food is very good. The away fans regularly explain where veggie burgers can fit.

Cooking veggie meals requires finding new recipes, which are readily available. I use an app to locate and store recipes, and pretty much approach cooking I as i did before - looking for a recipe, trying it out and marking it as reusable if it is tasty and straightforward. I’ve got a set of meat dishes collected over time, and now a growing set of veggie dishes.

Ultimately, though, I’m not sure if converting diets is the answer.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Ben T on October 18, 2018, 10:01:04 am
One of the main reasons humans are more advanced than other species and thus dominate the planet, is the invention of fire. Once we discovered fire, we realised we could cook meat, which made it take less time to eat. Contrast that to, say, lions, who spend most of their time chewing their meat - meaning they haven't got time to do things like build cities.

Examples of species that don't eat meat: cows, giraffes, goats. I think the cleverest herbivore is probably actually the parrot. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_herbivorous_animals

A good principle in general, is when you ask a question, try not to indicate what you want the answer to be. But it's funny when the person assumes incorrectly what you want the answer to be. Such as invariably happens in canteens:
"Is this burger veggie?"
"Yep!"
"Oh, I'll have a different one then."
;D
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Ham on October 18, 2018, 11:03:27 am
...the wider question of environmental impact, it is about getting a fast change in a lot of people who are resistant to it.
....
Ultimately, though, I’m not sure if converting diets is the answer.

Isn't it worse than that? It is attempting to achieve change in an areas where there is beyond-massive vested interest not just in the status quo, but in advancing the meat diet agenda.

The answer is, as ever, the only person you can change is yourself. Whether that does any good in the wider scheme of things is another question, but actually there's sufficient cause to modify diet from personal vested interest due to the health and wellbeing aspects.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: mrcharly-YHT on October 18, 2018, 11:10:49 am
One of the main reasons humans are more advanced than other species and thus dominate the planet, is the invention of fire. Once we discovered fire, we realised we could cook meat, which made it take less time to eat. Contrast that to, say, lions, who spend most of their time chewing their meat - meaning they haven't got time to do things like build cities.

Examples of species that don't eat meat: cows, giraffes, goats. I think the cleverest herbivore is probably actually the parrot. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_herbivorous_animals

A good principle in general, is when you ask a question, try not to indicate what you want the answer to be. But it's funny when the person assumes incorrectly what you want the answer to be. Such as invariably happens in canteens:
"Is this burger veggie?"
"Yep!"
"Oh, I'll have a different one then."
;D
The evidence for your claims (use of fire = cooking meat = advances in civilization) are, I suggest, non existent. It takes a hell of a lot of time to build and energy to maintain a fire. Have you ever gathered and kept a fire going outdoors, for more than a couple of hours?

Everything I have read about advancement in civilization for human beings comes down to tool making and agriculture. The two are linked.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Ben T on October 18, 2018, 12:36:50 pm
One of the main reasons humans are more advanced than other species and thus dominate the planet, is the invention of fire. Once we discovered fire, we realised we could cook meat, which made it take less time to eat. Contrast that to, say, lions, who spend most of their time chewing their meat - meaning they haven't got time to do things like build cities.

Examples of species that don't eat meat: cows, giraffes, goats. I think the cleverest herbivore is probably actually the parrot. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_herbivorous_animals

A good principle in general, is when you ask a question, try not to indicate what you want the answer to be. But it's funny when the person assumes incorrectly what you want the answer to be. Such as invariably happens in canteens:
"Is this burger veggie?"
"Yep!"
"Oh, I'll have a different one then."
;D
The evidence for your claims (use of fire = cooking meat = advances in civilization) are, I suggest, non existent. It takes a hell of a lot of time to build and energy to maintain a fire. Have you ever gathered and kept a fire going outdoors, for more than a couple of hours?

Everything I have read about advancement in civilization for human beings comes down to tool making and agriculture. The two are linked.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catching_Fire:_How_Cooking_Made_Us_Human
"...Cooking had profound evolutionary effect because it increased food efficiency which allowed human ancestors to spend less time foraging, chewing, and digesting...."
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Kim on October 18, 2018, 02:20:42 pm
"Is this burger veggie?"
"Yep!"
"Oh, I'll have a different one then."

This can be a good principle on the basis of politeness.  Event catering is a zero-sum game, and if the omnivores scoff all the veggie food, the veggies are liable to miss out.

Catering top tip: Put the meat stuff out first.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: citoyen on October 18, 2018, 02:35:54 pm
Contrast that to, say, lions, who spend most of their time chewing their meat - meaning they haven't got time to do things like build cities.

Lions spend on average 20 hours a day asleep. This suggests to me that the real reason they don't build cities is that they're lazy feckers.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Ben T on October 18, 2018, 02:43:18 pm
"Is this burger veggie?"
"Yep!"
"Oh, I'll have a different one then."

This can be a good principle on the basis of politeness.  Event catering is a zero-sum game, and if the omnivores scoff all the veggie food, the veggies are liable to miss out.

Catering top tip: Put the meat stuff out first.

I like that one! ;D That's an excellent reason never to try veggie food.  :D

I can now validly claim to be a non-vegetarian for ethical reasons.  :thumbsup:



On the flip side, if an (ethical) vegetarian turns up and all the veggie food has been scoffed, then they obviously don't need to be a vegetarian.  :P
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Ben T on October 18, 2018, 02:44:10 pm
Contrast that to, say, lions, who spend most of their time chewing their meat - meaning they haven't got time to do things like build cities.

Lions spend on average 20 hours a day asleep. This suggests to me that the real reason they don't build cities is that they're lazy feckers.

True.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: hellymedic on October 18, 2018, 02:48:09 pm
Contrast that to, say, lions, who spend most of their time chewing their meat - meaning they haven't got time to do things like build cities.

Lions spend on average 20 hours a day asleep. This suggests to me that the real reason they don't build cities is that they're lazy feckers.

Are they lazy or is the digestive effort leaving them sleepy?

Storable carbs facilitated the development of literacy and culture...
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: citoyen on October 18, 2018, 03:40:10 pm
Are they lazy or is the digestive effort leaving them sleepy?

Nah, definitely lazy. It's their sense of entitlement - someone once told them they're the king of the jungle and they don't think they have to make an effort any more.

Quote
Storable carbs facilitated the development of literacy and culture...

The old opposable thumbs thing didn't hurt either.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: ian on October 18, 2018, 09:07:55 pm
Lions are not lazy. They're tired from the exhausting hair care regime.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: ElyDave on October 19, 2018, 10:07:02 am
yebbut that's only the blokes
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: ian on October 19, 2018, 12:33:55 pm
I'm sure the lady lions help with the blowdrying and hairspray.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: mrcharly-YHT on October 19, 2018, 03:19:16 pm
One of the main reasons humans are more advanced than other species and thus dominate the planet, is the invention of fire. Once we discovered fire, we realised we could cook meat, which made it take less time to eat. Contrast that to, say, lions, who spend most of their time chewing their meat - meaning they haven't got time to do things like build cities.

Examples of species that don't eat meat: cows, giraffes, goats. I think the cleverest herbivore is probably actually the parrot. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_herbivorous_animals

A good principle in general, is when you ask a question, try not to indicate what you want the answer to be. But it's funny when the person assumes incorrectly what you want the answer to be. Such as invariably happens in canteens:
"Is this burger veggie?"
"Yep!"
"Oh, I'll have a different one then."
;D
The evidence for your claims (use of fire = cooking meat = advances in civilization) are, I suggest, non existent. It takes a hell of a lot of time to build and energy to maintain a fire. Have you ever gathered and kept a fire going outdoors, for more than a couple of hours?

Everything I have read about advancement in civilization for human beings comes down to tool making and agriculture. The two are linked.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catching_Fire:_How_Cooking_Made_Us_Human
"...Cooking had profound evolutionary effect because it increased food efficiency which allowed human ancestors to spend less time foraging, chewing, and digesting...."

Quote
Critics of the cooking hypothesis question whether archaeological evidence supports the view that cooking fires began long enough ago to confirm Wrangham's findings.[7] The traditional explanation is that human ancestors scavenged carcasses for high-quality food that preceded the evolutionary shift to smaller guts and larger brains.

Cooking grains and vegetables has more of an effect on the digestibility of the food than cooking meat. Humans can digest raw meat (even with our current gut). Try living off raw grains and greens; it is very difficult. Many require soaking at least before eating.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Notsototalnewbie on October 19, 2018, 03:32:13 pm
Batch cooking is a good way to cut down faff and have meals ready to go when you get home from a busy day.

Eg there'a veggie sausage casserole that I like to make (Cauldron sausages are my favourite) that is good for several meals. If you don't want to eat it for several days in a row you can freeze it in portions. Between the veggie sausages and the red lentils in it it's good on protein levels too.

I expect you could do the same with the veggie chilli we had at the weekend, and numerous other dishes.

I'm busy and I do find all the chopping a faff because I'm not a patient person but this is helped a lot by doing it all in one go.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: bobb on October 19, 2018, 03:59:30 pm
A shit load of animal products are used in the production of veggies anyway. There's almost no point....
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: citoyen on October 19, 2018, 04:07:10 pm
A shit load of animal products are used in the production of veggies anyway. There's almost no point....

Literally a "shit load" in some cases.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: ian on October 19, 2018, 04:30:50 pm
Most veg has to be cooked, it's at mostly poisonous or at best difficult to digest. Plants invest a lot of metabolic effort in making themselves (fruit aside) unpalatable and undigestible. Any plant with tasty and nutritious leaves wouldn't be around for long. Of course, most modern veg has been bred specifically to less bitter and toxic, which is why we can throw into a salad. People used to boil cabbage for a week because that was the only way to break down the panoply of glucosinolates and other thiols therein. The amount of effort to make soybean, for instance, edible was titanic. The wheat in our bread has been through millennia of breeding. Herbivores must work hard to break down plant matter and rely heavily on their gut biome to shoulder the load.

Animals, on the other hand, can generally just be eaten if and when you catch them. Which is probably why there are carnivores, chasing things around is extremely energetic compared to eating things that are immobile. If it wasn't the nutritional difference, it's hard to justify – evolutionarily – why some animals go chasing around and killing other animals.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Hot Flatus on October 19, 2018, 05:03:56 pm
It's what God wanted.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Giropaul on October 19, 2018, 05:56:46 pm
One of the main reasons humans are more advanced than other species and thus dominate the planet, is the invention of fire. Once we discovered fire, we realised we could cook meat, which made it take less time to eat. Contrast that to, say, lions, who spend most of their time chewing their meat - meaning they haven't got time to do things like build cities.

Examples of species that don't eat meat: cows, giraffes, goats. I think the cleverest herbivore is probably actually the parrot. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_herbivorous_animals


Most herbivores have a digestive system that efficiently digests plant material. All those you mentioned have four stomachs, horses have a vast colon. We humans are much less efficient, and can’t produce protein from herbage ( ruminants do this with the help of micro flora and fauna in their digestive system).
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on October 19, 2018, 05:58:05 pm
It's what God wanted.
Rubbish! God wants cake.  :thumbsup:
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: citoyen on October 19, 2018, 05:59:48 pm
It's what God wanted.
Rubbish! God wants cake.  :thumbsup:

They did vegan cakes on Bake Off this week. They looked rubbish.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Cudzoziemiec on October 19, 2018, 06:02:36 pm
It's what God wanted.
Rubbish! God wants cake.  :thumbsup:

They did vegan cakes on Bake Off this week. They looked rubbish.
God won't look at the cakes. Just stuff them in his mouth. God is hungry, like the day after a 300 with 4.5AAA points.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: hellymedic on October 19, 2018, 06:04:07 pm
It's what God wanted.

Are you referring to Cain and Abel?
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: ian on October 19, 2018, 08:16:42 pm
Are those the guys that deliver organic veg boxes?
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Feline on October 19, 2018, 08:39:05 pm
I totally get where you are coming from Wow.

I've made the decision though not to try to give up meat, but just to be super fussy about what meat we eat. Mostly it's from actual farms I know. I am particularly interested in how the slaughter is carried out.

Tonight I bought a couple of very expensive free range organic chicken breasts (and some wine) and the checkout person asked me if I was cooking something special. Had to admit that the chicken was not for us, it's for the dog who has just had a major operation. She was amazed I would spend £6 on a couple of chicken breasts for the dog. I explained that the thing is, it's not about the dog, it's about the chickens.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Pickled Onion on October 19, 2018, 08:59:24 pm
Two things wind me up about not eating meat. One is the immediate assumption that food has to be really spicy as some kind of compensation. I enjoy a good curry, but sometimes I just want food, is it really that hard? The other one is equating not eating meat with all the faddy diets. Try googling for a vegan recipe and 99% of them will be proudly gluten free. Why? People with coeliac disease don’t need to avoid meat, neither do non- meat eaters have to add in other invented allergies.

To answer the OP, we relied for years on Rose Elliot and the first Cranks cookbook, a lot of European/British recipes in both. Rose Elliot has quite a few wartime recipes so possibly what your parents did cook, but not necessarily share down the generations.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: ElyDave on October 20, 2018, 07:01:13 am
both as a PSO and I'm expecting in my new life I'll be reducing meat intake for reasons of cost if nothing else.  I'm generally on the same wavelength as Feline here in that I try and buy as much of the meat that I do eat from sources I trust and are as local as possible - the value of a very good farmers market.  I also try to eat more game than farmed meat, plus fish and chicken, which have better sustainability credentials.

TBH, "english" recipes like shepherds pie, spag bol etc, you can always use a meat substitute or lentils to get the protein, without overly changing the feel of the dish.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: citoyen on October 20, 2018, 11:10:30 am
Try googling for a vegan recipe and 99% of them will be proudly gluten free. Why? People with coeliac disease don’t need to avoid meat, neither do non- meat eaters have to add in other invented allergies.

I suspect it’s purely incidental, ie they’re not designed to be gluten-free, they just are by default. And that being the case, you might as well advertise them as such.

I also think you’re overreacting.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: fuaran on October 20, 2018, 11:18:07 am
You don't really need to worry about protein. Eat a sensible diet, and you will get plenty. No need to ensure there is a 'protein source' in every meal. Meat isn't exactly a great source of protein anyway.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: hubner on October 21, 2018, 12:57:12 pm
You can use a small amount of meat for flavour instead of it being one of the main ingredients.

Eg, one slice of bacon cut into thin strips then fried mainly in its own fat until it's well crispy.

Or cuts of meat thinly sliced and  well seasoned with salt and pepper as you fry it, you could also add soya sauce, fish sauce, worcestershire sauce etc.

Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: ian on October 22, 2018, 09:24:43 am
You don't really need to worry about protein. Eat a sensible diet, and you will get plenty. No need to ensure there is a 'protein source' in every meal. Meat isn't exactly a great source of protein anyway.

Meat is mostly protein, so I think it's probably pretty good as protein sources go.

But no, you don't need meat for your protein, the average vegetarian diet is rich enough for it not to be a problem – our profligate first-world lifestyles ensure we get more protein, more of everything, that we need in a meal. It's only really an issue for vegans.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: pcolbeck on October 22, 2018, 09:48:19 am
Loads of good veggie proteins sources but simply removing meat from a traditional British diet and not replacing the protein somehow will leave a protein gap especially if one were to also cut down or remove milk eggs and cheese from your diet.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: fuaran on October 22, 2018, 10:00:22 am
No one has ever died from lack of protein (unless they are actually starving). Why assume a 'traditional British diet' is healthy in the first place.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: ian on October 22, 2018, 10:20:52 am
I guess that's the problem – the traditional British meal always has meat as its centrepiece. Simply making that centrepiece smaller is likely just to make it disappointing. My parents won't ever eat a meal without meat (not an issue, since they have a freezer full of dubiously sourced meat, another story...)

It doesn't have to be complicated. I made broccoli cheese yesterday for my supper. Took about ten minutes – floret the broccoli, steam it till tender while making a quick cheese sauce (knob of butter, a spoon of flour, add milk till of the correct consistency, then grated cheese). Mix up, two minutes under the grill with a bit of cheese and a sprinkle of breadcrumbs on top. Et voilà. Many pasta dishes don't require or benefit from the addition of meat – there's plenty of scope for veggie curries, falafel and the like. Generally, I'm not big on pretend meat, but I really like the Cauldron sausages – I'm not entirely sure they taste like sausages but they're tasty nevertheless.

My exceptions are veggie chilli and bolognese – sorry, I've tried to make them work and failed, they just seem to need meat.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: pcolbeck on October 22, 2018, 11:20:54 am
No one has ever died from lack of protein (unless they are actually starving). Why assume a 'traditional British diet' is healthy in the first place.

I don't. Its just if you remove the meat from it and the milk and eggs and dont replace them with anything its even worse.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: rafletcher on October 22, 2018, 11:44:30 am

My exceptions are veggie chilli and bolognese – sorry, I've tried to make them work and failed, they just seem to need meat.

Cilli I'd agree with, I always put some mince in, tho often only 25%.  As to "bolognese", here's an Italian "fake meat" sauce..

https://www.visittuscany.com/en/recipes/sugo-finto-or-fake-meat-sauce-recipe-by-paolo-gori/

I've not tried it - in fact I only found out about it this weekend (it was in the Guardians Michael Caine cooking strip).
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: pcolbeck on October 22, 2018, 12:09:12 pm
I used to cook quite a lot of veggie bolognaise and lasagne years ago as my sister is veggie and Mrs Pcolbeck was almost 100% veggie for several years (she made an exception for game). Sometimes I used a mince substitute.

Cant remember what the stuff was called but it was OK when simmered with tomatoes,onions and garlic etc. It might come to me later.

[edit]

Beanfeast soya mince - thats the stuff. Just add boiling water. There appear to be different flavours now I just to use the plain savoury mince one. Worked OK for a shepherds pie as well.
There are probably better things now as this was a long time ago ~ 20 years. The main thing about it was that it gave the right texture.

[/edit]
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Plug1n on October 22, 2018, 01:27:54 pm
Rabbit is a nearly inexhaustible resource and cheap

Normally at least €20/kg here in Paris, unless on special.  Not cheap and not veggie.

The title of the thread caught my attention because it was precisely my motivation for a few years of vegetarianism (long ago).  The French influence in 1980's Abidjan got the better of me.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: ian on October 22, 2018, 01:32:04 pm
With veggie chilli and bolognese, it's not really the texture or presence of meat, it's the taste. Bolognese just needs that pancetta and ideally a bit of chicken liver to really get going. Otherwise it's just tomato sauce. Nothing wrong with that, but it's not the rich ragu that bolognese demands. Ironically, I find it benefits from using minimum quantities for meat – less is more, the meat is more flavouring than substance, it really should be a sauce to coat your pasta. People always make the mistake of sticking a pile of mince in it. Not needed.

Carbonara also works well with a small amount of pancetta or smoky bacon to flavour the sauce. Fry it up till crisp while cooking the pasta, tip pasta in the pan with the pancetta (off the heat), add the egg and parmesan, stir and serve. One rasher is easily enough.

Chilli though, I find does need a pile of meat. It's a meaty dish. Otherwise, it just ends up as bean stew. Nothing against that either, but it's not proper chilli, which needs beef in quantity (also some bacon). Possibly I was an American for too long.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: FifeingEejit on October 22, 2018, 02:37:32 pm
Rabbit is a nearly inexhaustible resource and cheap

Normally at least €20/kg here in Paris, unless on special.  Not cheap and not veggie.

The title of the thread caught my attention because it was precisely my motivation for a few years of vegetarianism (long ago).  The French influence in 1980's Abidjan got the better of me.

Venison is also surprisingly dear given that there's so many of the bloody things bouncing onto car bonnets all the time.
Most of the stuff sold in shops comes from farms (one of the largest isn't far from me) but there's a serious overpopulation that either needs humans out there with rifles and grallochs or a reintroduction of wolves.
In such a situation producing animals for meat that only exist through human intervention (sheep and cows) is getting pretty absurd.

Note: I've rebuilt two cars after Bambi suicides and have had a number of near misses while out on the bikes. Most annoyingly neither time could I claim the carcase (and I wouldn't know how to gralloch either) so didn't even get some tasty meals to offset the cost of the rebuilds.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: fuaran on October 22, 2018, 05:03:12 pm
In terms of environmental impact, cheese is worse than chicken or pork.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: pcolbeck on October 22, 2018, 08:39:55 pm
Rabbit is a nearly inexhaustible resource and cheap

Normally at least €20/kg here in Paris, unless on special.  Not cheap and not veggie.

Thats big cities charging loads for stuff that's virtually free in the countryside and is free if you have an air rifle and know someone with some land as they will nearly always be open to you reducing the local bunny population. You would hate to know what a brace of pheasant costs here as well (<£5).
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Ben T on October 22, 2018, 09:01:21 pm

Venison is also surprisingly dear given that there's so many of the bloody things bouncing onto car bonnets all the time.
Most of the stuff sold in shops comes from farms (one of the largest isn't far from me) but there's a serious overpopulation that either needs humans out there with rifles and grallochs or a reintroduction of wolves.
In such a situation producing animals for meat that only exist through human intervention (sheep and cows) is getting pretty absurd.

Note: I've rebuilt two cars after Bambi suicides and have had a number of near misses while out on the bikes. Most annoyingly neither time could I claim the carcase (and I wouldn't know how to gralloch either) so didn't even get some tasty meals to offset the cost of the rebuilds.

I would be happy with cows and sheep being feralized and hunted. Would free up a fair bit of land as well as providing a good tourist industry.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: ian on October 22, 2018, 09:14:40 pm
You can't 'feralize' most farm animals. They're dependent on humans for many aspects of their care.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Ben T on October 22, 2018, 11:06:00 pm
You can't 'feralize' most farm animals. They're dependent on humans for many aspects of their care.
They are now, but they would have to evolve to not be. About time they learnt to stand on their own four feet.

The animal I would be even more in favour of feralizing is the chicken. They are naturally forest birds, and would be quite good to hunt.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: pcolbeck on October 23, 2018, 09:04:54 am
Have you ever kept chickens BenT ? They woudl be absolutely rubbish to hunt. They are too stupid. They would just sit there in the lower branches of a tree watching you as you shot them. It would be like hunting apples but less seasonal.

Cows will go feral (and in not many generations) but become dangerous quickly if not domesticated. Sheep die as there coats keep growing. Also sheep just die anyway of random stupid things they do to themselves as any farmer will tell you (really they are particularly skilled at topping themselves).

Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Ben T on October 23, 2018, 09:37:42 am
Have you ever kept chickens BenT ? They woudl be absolutely rubbish to hunt. They are too stupid. They would just sit there and in the lower branches of a tree watching you as you shot them. It would be like hunting apples but less seasonal.

Yes, but, remember you would want to shoot them with either a rifle, crossbow, or better still, bow and arrow* - rather than a shotgun, as you wouldn't want bits of lead in your casserole, and they are relatively small, so unless you were standing over them at point blank range** you would still have to be a fairly good shot. Shotgun would be cheating.

* or even, for comedy value, a revolver
** which I'm by no means arguing against, but it would be less of a challenge.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: FifeingEejit on October 23, 2018, 11:29:51 am
In terms of environmental impact, cheese is worse than chicken or pork.

Certainly is when I eat cheese  :sick:

Cows will go feral (and in not many generations) but become dangerous quickly if not domesticated. Sheep die as there coats keep growing. Also sheep just die anyway of random stupid things they do to themselves as any farmer will tell you (really they are particularly skilled at topping themselves).

Domesticated cows are a danger enough to humans as it is... being surrounded by them is terrifying, thankfully I found a route out before one decided to rest on me... unforutantely that route was over a fence on a cliff edge...

The blackface that lived on Hirta were moved to Boerary to stop cross breeding with the Soay; they seem to be doing ok; the Soay of course were never domesticated enough to have that problem.

The lack of intelligence in Sheep and Chicken is rather handy for domestication and probably encouraged by it; a chook that figured out that it could just flyaway from the coop is after all not much use for egg production.



My biggest problem with Vegans isn't that they don't want to eat animal product (which is fair enough) or that they treat it as a religion.
No my biggest problem with Vegans is their constant posting of "look how cure this animal is, why would you eat it", because that animal is almost always one that humans have produced specifically for the food chain; either way that cute animal will die, either by being foodstuff or due to necessary extinction if it wasn't being produced for foodstuff.
Title: Re: Reducing meat intake for environmental reasons
Post by: Butterfly on October 23, 2018, 11:49:27 am
I always cook vegetarian and often vegan. I use quorn or similar meat substitutes to add protein and texture, but herbs and lentils for flavour.

I make risotto with or without quorn pieces,  lentil or bean stews to go with jacket potatoes, pasta sauce with onion, grated carrot and tomatoes - sometimes also quorn mince. If I cook veg and boiled potatoes, I do omelette or veggie sausages or pies instead. I was brought up with veggie options so I don't really consider meat and 2 veg as the norm. At home our Christmas dinner was lentil savoury - a pre-war vegetarian recipe, with the normal trimmings. It's better than a big bird because you can prepare it weeks before and freeze it and just put it in the oven on the day. It's nicer too.

1/2 lb red lentils
1/2 pt cold water
3 shredded wheat or similar quantity of bread crumbs
4 tomatoes or a tin - if you strain the tin or use fresh tomatoes, it will be quite dry - my mum uses the tomato juice to make a sauce with herbs and seasoning; my sister and I just use the whole tin of tomatoes without straining.
1/2 lb grated cheese
2 onions
nut fat or cooking oil

Rinse the lentils, bring to the boil and simmer until part cooked. Add tomatoes and cook more
Fry the onions
Add the onions, cheese and half the shredded wheat to the lentils and stir thoroughly
Put mixture into shallow greased dish
Crumble remaining shredded wheat on the top
Bake until brown and crisp

Most of my cooking starts with fry onions, add some veg and maybe quorn.

Add rice and water to make risotto or quinoa or spelt  for those variations

Add tomatoes and herbs and possibly lentils to make mince

Add lentils or beans to make stew


I regularly start cooking and decide what it is going to be later. Some things go with pasta one day, rice another and potatoes on a third.