Betty Goes Vegan

I know it may sound crazy, but there is a new cookbook out called Betty Goes Vegan.

Yes, it’s Betty Crocker, the fictitious character who was created by a major food company in the last century to make certain foods and recipes more relatable to the American female shopper.

Turns out that the authors Annie and Dan Shannon — longtime vegans living in New York — got the idea for the cookbook from the movie Julie and Julia about blogger Julie Powell’s compulsive year of cooking every recipe from Julia Child’s cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking.

If you didn’t see the movie or read the book, I highly recommend them.

As vegans eating only a plant-based diet (no eggs, no dairy, no animals products or refined sugar), the Shannons were always looking for new mainstream recipes. Read The Oregonian story about how the movie inspired them here.

Although I haven’t gotten the cookbook yet, I love that the authors are committed to their vegan lifestyle, yet know that most people don’t understand it. So, by creating popular everyday “Americana” recipes without meat and animal products, it makes adapting a healthier lifestyle more palatable.

When I went vegan in August 2012, I got a lot of crazy questions and comments from friends – and still get them. (Right now I am now only about 90 percent vegan, because I eat an occasional egg white and fish.)

“I need to find a restaurant that you can eat at.”
Honestly, every restaurant I’ve ever been to has salad and serves some sort of vegetable. I have never starved at a restaurant. Just pick a restaurant that has a cool venue and atmosphere.

“What can you eat?
I think hearing that a vegan is coming to your house is scary to some people. I remember the first time my fitness trainer, Ikumi, came to my house (she’s vegan). I thought she was a little eccentric, not eating meat, dairy, or any animal products. I was actually a little put off. But I didn’t understand how healthy and doable the lifestyle is. So now I tell my friends, “Don’t worry about me. Any kind of salad, veggies, nuts or fruits will work for me.” I usually grab a snack before I leave my house, so I am not hungry when I arrive for a meal.

“Do you get enough protein?
Since I don’t eat soy products (food allergy), it was difficult for me to get enough protein for my body. That’s why I added back an occasional egg white omelet or wild fish (I prefer to eat wild fish rather than farmed fish when possible. Learn more here.) But some vegans can get plenty of protein from nuts, tofu and other soy products. 

I want to thank our friend Kellee and my mom for sharing this story with me. It really does seem that choosing a plant-based diet (going vegan) is becoming more of a mainstream phenomenon!

Go veggies!