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Vegan life: The Aftermath

I completed my 21-day vegan challenge with success. I want to say a special thank you to everyone who supported and believed in me. It is greatly appreciated!

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Copious brunch: strawberry jam toast, maple nut cereal, maple banana muffin, grapes & chai tea

How do I feel now? I feel different that’s for sure. How different? I feel more confident in cooking dishes. I used to hate cooking because it was messy and annoyed. Almost everytime I cut onions, I cry. When I fry things with oil, I often get burnt. I’m actually a very clumsy person. Just today, I burnt popcorn.

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Generous dinner: basmati rice with sautéed curry tofu

I had mentioned in my previous post that I ate cheese. Well on October 18, after waking up at 4:30 pm and eating a copious brunch and later dinner, I was finally able to eat 2 things I enjoy a lot and terribly missed: APPLE PIE AND VANILLA ICE CREAM!!! I had to capitalize the words to show my excitement. Those are 2 of my favourite desserts!

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Perfect dessert: apple pie & vanilla ice cream

Did I eat a good steak? No, I haven’t and I don’t think I will anytime soon. Right now, I’m transitioning from vegan to vegetarian. I think my body would react badly to meat. I didn’t have any meat cravings during my vegan challenge, only cravings of dairy products. Does this make me want to stop eating meat forever and becoming vegan or vegetarian? I’m unsure because I’ve always loved meat, especially trying new extravagant kinds from bison to horse meat. I’m known to splurge on food, especially foods with a ridiculous amount of calories. A classmate told me that my Instagram feed was sad with all the vegan food and found it funny that right before that, there’s pictures from Le Burger Week. It made me laugh because I went from eating lots of meat to eating none. I never cease to surprise myself.

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Decent brunch: scrambled tofu & toast

I’ve decided that I will keep a vegan diet in my lifestyle. I haven’t decided exactly how I’m going to manage this but maybe I could have in a month, 1 vegan week, 1 vegetarian week and 2 meat weeks. I also need to reduce my consumption of sugar and wheat in my lifestyle. Why this change, am I trying to lose weight? Not even, I just want to become a healthier and happier person. I believe I can achieve it by changing my lifestyle. The only thing missing is a physical activity. I want to do kickboxing or pilates, maybe in 2015.

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Dinner from Vegan Family: chili with rice, sour cream & tortilla chips

On October 19, I met a vegan family for my magazine writing class. They were very friendly, especially the children. The mother made a delicious dinner, which is definitely the best vegan food I’ve had until now. We discussed of many things and I found out many things about the vegan lifestyle.

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Dinner from Vegan Family: apple crumble with chocolate ice cream

p.s. I will let you know what happens when I eat meat and how I felt. I’m going to start with white meat like chicken or maybe have some shrimps.

Vegan Life: Day 21

October 17 2014

Yes, today is day 21! It’s the last day of my vegan challenge!!!!!

For breakfast, I had a banana and berry smoothie. I forgot to take a picture but you can check the previous posts to see what it looks like. I drank my organic chai from David’s Tea when I got to work and ate one of my maple and banana muffin.

For lunch, I enjoyed the free vegan lunch at People’s Potato. The soup was a mix of yellow split peas, cabbage, carrots and potatoes. The salad had cabbage, beets and turnips, it was very sweet. The entrée was a sort of porridge mixed with corn and other ingredients I can’t remember, served with a millet mix. It was good and filling.

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Free lunch at People’s potato: soup, salad, main & grain

I didn’t have dinner because I had to lead a pubcrawl. University life is very difficult as you can see. I did have some fries though and as always, I survived.

After midnight, my vegan challenge ended. My classmate offered to buy me McDonald’s after tackling me to the ground. Probably the most hilarious accident I lived. I was perfectly fine and the only reason I had trouble getting up was because I was dying of laughter at the absurdity of the moment. I gladly accepted the offer with just 1.50 dollars in my wallet. I didn’t want to eat a burger because I was scared my body wouldn’t react well. I had a vegetarian wrap with feta cheese inside and some fries with a fruitopia drink. The wrap was so good, I missed cheese! After the meal, I started feeling like shit. I don’t know if it was because of the cheese or because my subconscious is telling McDonald’s is shit.

Do you want to know how I felt about my 21-day vegan challenge? My next post will talk about my aftermath of this challenge.

Vegan Life: Day 20

October 16 2014

Thursday morning, I had time to sit down and eat breakfast. I don’t know if this vegan lifestyle is making me a more responsible person by not always eating on the go. Not only am I eating healthier but I seem to develop healthier lifestyles by cooking more and eating less outside. However the latter is due to my lack of finances more than anything. I guess being poor is healthier for me. Why is life so ironic? For breakfast, I had a bowl of maple nut cereal with almond milk and a maple banana muffin. I think by looking at my breakfast, it’s safe to say that I really love maple syrup. It’s definitely my favourite “Canadian food” or should I say “Quebecer food” to not upset people of this lovely province I live in. It’s also heathier than sugar.

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Breakfast: maple nut cereal & maple banana muffin

For lunch and dinner, I had some basmati rice with sautéed curry tofu. I love the smell of spices in food. My mother often puts spices in her dishes and having grown up in India got me accustomed to the smell of spices. Some people always wonder why my lunches smell delicious, must be the spices. Sorry not sorry for making you hungry during class! I had dinner and some desserts home: strawberry applesauce and a maple and banana muffin. Later, I went to see the premiere of Paquita from the Ballet de l’Opéra national de Paris. It was the most beautiful ballet I’ve seen in my entire life!!! Definitely my favourite ballet now, just before Marie-Antoinette and Swan Lake!!!!

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Dinner & desserts: basmati rice with sautéed curry tofu & strawberry applesauce + maple banana muffin

Veganism is literally taking over my life! I have decided to write an article about it for my magazine writing class and do a multimedia project for my multiplatform class. As a journalist, I can also mention my own veganism experience in those pieces, well especially the multimedia one. What is the difference between a vegan and non-vegan diet? I want to demystify the vegan life. I have a day left of the challenge and I am apprehending eating meat again.

Vegan Life: Day 19

October 15 2014

Oddly enough, I woke up early on Wednesday and had time to enjoy a nice breakfast before my 9:30 am class. I had a bowl of maple nut cereal with pieces of strawberries and almond milk. Tuesday when I made my smoothie, I left the bag of frozen berries on the counter so I had no choice but to leave the fruits in the fridge. This is what happens when you’re on a hurry. My mother always tells me to wake up early and sit down to have breakfast. Of course, I know that but I’m just very lazy and press the snooze button at least 3 times and yes, even on weekends. So as I was saying, I had a bowl of cereal and a side of the scrambled tofu I made on Monday. A nutritious breakfast for a long day, where I had an hour to finish a 47-page reading. I managed to get to 27 before class started.

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Breakfast: maple nut cereal and scrambled tofu

I overheard my classmates in the hall saying they were going get free lunch at the hive café Loyola so I joined them. They always offer a vegan and vegetarian option during the free lunch hour. Both the options today were vegan. They had a creamy gratin with cauliflower and a couscous tabouleh. They were both delicious, especially the creamy gratin. I mentioned I missed dairy products and this kind of reminded me of cheese.

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Free lunch at Loyola: cauliflower creamy gratin & couscous tabouleh

When I got home, I was feeling motivated to cook. I used a recipe in the 21-day vegan recipes for a healthy snack. I was low on money to buy some so I decided to make maple and banana muffins. They are very good, just a bit too healthy for me. I thought they weren’t really sweet even if I added more maple syrup than suggested. My mother asked me if I was going to add something over them. I nicely explained to her the difference between a cupcake and a muffin. My mother doesn’t like sweet things. I take that from my father who has a sweet tooth. He’s the best!

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Dessert: maple and banana muffins

While my muffins were baking, I decided to make a sautéed curry tofu recipe I found on the internet. Unfortunately, I don’t remember where I found the recipe. Yes this time, I bought some firm tofu! I learned from my mistake. As always, I didn’t have the exact ingredients so I improvised with what there was in my fridge. It was an Asian-inspired recipe with coconut milk. I am obsessed with the use of coconut milk in recipes, I’m going to keep using it. I prepared some basmati rice to serve with the sautéed tofu. It was delicious, sweet, spicy and rich!

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Dinner: bamsati rice with sautéed curry tofu

On Day 2 of the challenge, I said the Thai-style tempeh was probably the best thing I cooked. Now I can say that the sautéed curry tofu is the best thing I’ve cooked so far. I will definitely use this recipe and add either some chicken or shrimps when I resume my non-vegan life. People have asked me if I will remain vegan and I don’t think I will. However, I will continue cooking vegan meals once in a while.

Vegan Life: Day 18

This week was intense and crazy, which is why I haven’t been able to update my blog daily but I’ll tell you about the end of my challenge in the next posts!

October 14 2014

The 3-day weekend is over and the school routine is back on track. I didn’t have time to make a complete breakfast so I had a banana and berry smoothie, which I took on the go. I am really enjoying smoothies, they’re simple and easy to make. They are also perfect for a person on the go like me.

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Breakfast: banana and berry smoothie

I had basmati rice with chickpeas for lunch again. As a snack, I had strawberry applesauce. It remplaces my beloved yogurt, which I truly miss. Of course, I had some apples since I went apple picking the previous day.

When I got home, I ate some rice with the red beans that my mother often cooks. I really like this recipe but I wanted to try new recipes as a vegan. I didn’t cook tonight because I had 2 episodes of True Blood left to watch. Personally, I don’t know how I’m still watching this show after the 6th season. It’s so absurd and weird, too much sex and blood for me. Actually, I like gory things so I don’t mind the blood as much. I’m just always left with “what the hell just happened?” at the end of each season and I need to have my questions answered.

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Dinner: basmati rice and red beans

I really miss dairy products and I can’t wait to be food with dairy again. People are asking me if I’m excited for the end of the challenge and I’m not sure what to answer. I have mixed feelings, yes I’m excited because I can eat dairy products and no, I’m not excited because it means I’ll stop putting efforts in cooking.

Vegan Life: Day 17

October 13 2014

This morning, I made a recipe from the 21-day challenge recipes. It was scrambled tofu with a potato and adding ground tumeric for a touch of yello. It was very delicious and filling. I was sad that I didn’t have much ketchup left to accompany my dish. I have some leftovers for tomorrrow morning. I might try the recipe again, but this time I would add some soy or almond milk. I also had a bowl of banana tofu pudding and a cup of earl grey tea from David’s Tea yet again.

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Morning brunch

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Brunch: scrambled tofu

I went apple picking with journalism students because I am part of the student association and organized the event. It was fun and I ate many apples. I bought some apple pies for my sister and mother. I found upon my return that my mother had betrayed the challenge and ate some portuguese chicken. I was shocked, I thought my mother was stronger than this. She’s the first one to tell me to eat more vegetables and less meat.

I wanted to make a sautéed tofu recipe but I was feeling tired and really wanted to continue watching True Blood (dvd is due on Wednesday). Also, there’s still a lot of food left in the fridge and freezer. I ate the same thing I had for lunch/dinner yesterday and before yesterday. Maybe tomorrow, I might want to cook something up. I want to bake a vegan apple pie or crumble since I can’t eat the one that I bought for my mother. Yes, she ate some pie with my sister earlier.

Also if you want to see what I’m eating, check out my instagram page @nyeba. You can also use the hashtag #nickbecomesvegan to see what I eat daily before publishing.

Vegan Life: Day 16

October 12 2014

My mother cooked meat for guests who came over. It smelled so bad, I was feeling nauseous. I think I’m used to this vegan life. My mother made oatmeal and added frozen berries to it. She put a bowl aside for me. I added some maple syrup because she doesn’t sweet things. I watched a few episodes of True Blood, as my mother was braiding my hair.

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Breakfast: oatmeal with berries

There is so much food in my fridge that I didn’t find it necessary to cook anything for the moment. I had the same thing I had yesterday, which was basmati rice with chickpeas my mother made. There is however a shortage of snacks in my house so I decided to make some desserts. I didn’t have access to my television or computer to continue watching True Blood so I thought, why not bake? I wanted to make a vegan cheesecake but the graham cracker crumbs I bought and which I though were vegan are not finally. I had to find another recipe to use the soft tofu in my fridge before it went bad.

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Ingredients for the pudding

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Dessert: banana tofu pudding

I found a banana tofu pudding recipe at Smith’s Vegan Kitchen. You can view the recipe here. It was simple and required very little ingredients. I had to chill the pudding before eating it and when I took it out, I noticed it was light purple. After mixing it, it regained a cream colour and I sprinkled the bowl with cinnamon. It’s the first time I made a pudding and it was pretty good. Of course, it doesn’t taste like your typical pudding but it was a good and light dessert.

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Dessert: vegan vanilla cake

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Mini portion of vanilla cake

It wasn’t enough to make only a pudding so I decided to make a vegan vanilla cake. I found the recipe on Allrecipes.com two weeks ago. You can view the recipe here. I felt lost because I had nothing to grease my pan with. I put the little I had of canola oil left with some flour but it didn’t work because the cake was sticking to the pan. I had a doubt when I cut the cake that it wasn’t ready despite the toothpick trick. The bottom of the cake didn’t look perfectly cooked but it seems the oil remained in the bottom. I still thought it tasted good, as well as my mother and her guests.

 

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