A Little Cuisine... Meatless Mondays

We've all heard the news and read the articles: going meatless is good for our health, good for our environment, and (lately the really big news) good for our food budget. Great. How do we convince our carnivorous offspring/spouses/significant other/roommates that going meatless once in a while is a good thing? Introduce Meatless Mondays at your house.
My rules for Meatless Mondays:
  1. Food needs to be simple and familiar. Nothing makes your fellow noshers run and hid like a veggie meal completely different from your usual norm. This is not the time to introduce tofu, tempeh, or unusual produce.
  2. Give kudos for trying the meal. Don't stress if they don't finish it.
  3. Make a (healthy) dessert. Your family knows that there will be something they like. But don't be surprised that they like the main meal enough and won't rely solely on dessert for sustenance.
Now, here's some help for good starter recipes. These were hits even to my meat-at-every-meal-especially-bacon 17 year old son. (High praise indeed.) Click on the recipe name for a link to the recipe itself. Pics courtesy of the recipe sites:

Eating Well's Black Bean Quesadilla. My family prefers pinto beans instead of black. Add a tossed salad with EW's Cilantro-Lime Vinaigrette and you have a complete meal. My family ended up dipping their quesadillas in the dressing, too. I knew this was a hit when my son made it again for lunch the next day.

Vegetarian Pot Pie from Food Network. I don't use a recipe - I usually just grab whatever veggies are in the fridge. But this recipe really come close to the best parts of the recipe: veggies + great sauce + puff pastry. This recipe includes fennel which I would leave out - from my experience, kids usually don't go for that additional flavor.
Spaghetti Frittata from Ellie Kreiger. This is another dish I usually just throw together but Eillie Kreiger seems to do the same thing. I usually top mine with cheese and serve with fresh fruit. I love that Ellie uses spinach in her recipe just like I do.

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Burritos from Moosewood Restaurant Low-Fat Favorites. This is a link to an adaptation that follows it fairly close. I suggest you just get the book. Leftovers of this are great for lunch the next day.

There you go, an entire month of Meatless Mondays. If you have a great vegetarian recipe, please send the link. I am always looking for new ideas.


Tami H. said...

Thanks for the ideas! I was at a loss of what to make for dinner tonight and I had everything for the black bean quesadilla and they were DELISH!

corinne said...

i LOVE this post carrie. i love meatless everything... so great ideas, thanks!


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