21 days of vegetarianism turns into 24

I didn’t quite know how I would get on with doing 21 days of vegetarianism; as I said previously, I’m not a huge meat eater, but I wouldn’t want to give it up completely. Anyway, I completed it – a173nd easier than I thought I would, especially as I’ve eaten out so much. I’ve actually done 24 days in total as I didn’t actually fancy eating any meat – although there is now bacon in the fridge as I do love my bacon.

I may not have been very adventurous with what I’ve eaten, but it has certainly done me good eating a lot more vegetables and salad that I have ever done. I do feel more healthy for being more considerate about what I’m eating. I haven’t actually lost any weight when I stand on the scales (not that I am a big one for going by what it says on the scales due to me being so curvy), but I would say there is certainly less of a ‘bloat’ to my stomach – unfortunately not enough to make me bikini ready for my Turkish adventure! That’s my own fault for that though – I’m not exactly what you call motivated when it comes to exercise (something that does need correcting if I intend to to the 5k that’s on this list).

A favourite I’ve been cooking is doing rice with loads of different vegetables and chopped tomatoes through it. I switched it between adding quorn pieces and adding kidney beans; I cooked it in bulk and freezed it – or had it for lunch the next day adding 196extra bits like feta through. It’s my own version of ready meals when I cook in bulk – there’s always things like pastas, bolognese (often a vegetarian version where I’ve had a sauce to use up) and chili in the freezer.

To bulk out meals a bit I’ve been adding feta and mozzarella through – two cheeses I like anyway – and a huge reason I could never be vegan. One of the meals with feta was adding it with tomatoes to pasta and then putting coleslaw through it – a very filling meal – cheap too.

As I said, I have eaten out quite a bit over the last three or so weeks and have only found once I couldn’t eat anything off the menu as it was all mushroom based – which I don’t like and quorn food – I didn’t see the point in paying for quorn pieces when I had them in the freezer already. Other than that, I found plenty to chose from; from vegetable lasagne, to pasta, salad and jacket potato. I often opt for vegetarian meals when I’m out – especially in pasta and pizzas – I a203lways have preferred vegetarian pizzas to meat pizzas – a way to actually get vegetables into me.

I’ve tried to make sure that I haven’t gone for easy foods all the time – sure nothing I’ve had was complicated, but I’ve certainly chopped more vegetables than I have ever done. Although I am going to go back to eating meat, I do want to do meat free Mondays so that I don’t completely abandon chopping all my veg and create a filling meal that way.  I know that I didn’t create any different recipes, but when you’ve just got in from a long drive, you don’t want to cook properly – which is why roasted veg is pretty good as once you’ve chopped it all up, you just whack it in a dish and you can get on with other things around the house.

Would you Eat Weird Shaped Veg?

How often do you eat food that doesn’t look good, or looks a little odd? I have to say I eat a lot of food that doesn’t look good as that’s the sum of my cooking skills – I promise you it does taste edible, even if it doesn’t look it. But have you ever considered eating weirdly shaped fruit and veg? Or do you just go straight for the stuff that looks good out of habit?

Eating weird and wonky fruit and veg could cut food waste, a poll by Institute of Mechanical Engineers (IME) has reported. The Guardian states that the survey found that most British shoppers are not put off by irregularly shaped produce.

The poll questioned a nationally representative sample of 2,007 people in the UK and found that more than 80% of British shoppers would be happy to buy fruit and vegetables which are not perfect in shape or colour.

The poll from IME showed that fewer than one-in-five people would only buy produce that is unblemished and uniform in size and shape. In the poll, 45% of people said that the appearance of fruit and vegetables doesn’t matter; 26% said they would buy the cheapest option, and 10% said they would actively seek out and choose imperfect looking produce.

In January, another report by the IME estimated that between 30% and 50% of the food produced worldwide is lost or wasted. They found that vegetable and fruit crops around the world are frequently not harvested or do not leave the farm after failing to meet tough quality controls on physical appearance imposed by retailers and supermarkets.

Weather affects harvests

Our poor excuse for weather in the UK doesn’t help matters when it comes to fruit and veg. The poor summer last year left some supermarkets struggling to keep shelves stocked with fresh produce and found them having to take a different direction and apologise for the fact that some fruit and vegetables were of a lower quality than usual. When winter rolled round, things didn’t get any easier with flooding and heavy rainfall making the situation worse.

To help ease the situation, Sainsbury’s even relaxed its rules on the cosmetic appearance of fresh produce and allowed fruit and vegetables that would normally be ploughed back into fields to be sold in its 1,012 stores.

With food waste being such a problem and the UK throwing away 15 million tonnes per year of food, is eating a wonky carrot so bad? Would it take the price being cheaper for people to consider it, or would you just take it as being normal if these types of vegetables were on the shelves every day?