When Buck and I modified our approach to what we eat several months ago, I ran into a word that seems to describe it well: flexitarian.
The word was coined sometime in the early nineties, and was named “most useful word of 2003” by the American Dialect Society. And in 2012, “flexitarian” was listed for the first time in the Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary.
But we only discovered it after searching for a way to describe our mostly plant meals. It’s sounds like one of those weasly bureaucratic made up words. Something to describe a wanna-be vegetarian with no spine.
Makes me think of Protestants who disdain Episcopalians by calling them “Whiskypalians” and say they’re former Baptists who like to drink. Well, yeah, I resemble that remark.
And so, I guess I can live with being a Flexitarian Whiskypalian.
So what’s happening with us on this new regime? Any cravings for the old “meat and three” way we grew up? Dreams of butter and cheese? Do we drool over ads for Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse?
In a word: No.
I can’t explain it, and I’m surprised. First and foremost, we’re enjoying meals more than we have in years. They’ve become un-boring. Buck continues to have zero IBS symptoms, which means more energy and a more relaxed and comfortable man. I’m sleeping sound as a young child, a welcome change. Whether this is related to our diet change, I can’t say. I can say the allergy-related puffiness under my eyes (which I hate) has improved significantly, and weight creep has reversed. Yeah, I know. I’ve got New Convert Syndrome. Ask me again in six months.
Meanwhile, a few photos . . .
Here’s an example of the “flex” in flexitarian. The meat on the plate is house-smoked turkey breast. We don’t grill outdoors anymore. I lost my taste for using charcoal, and have always been scared to death of using propane tanks on a gas grill. Silly, but true. But my little secret for the best smoked foods I’ve ever tasted is an inexpensive indoor stovetop smoker made by Cameron. For this turkey breast, I used pecan wood chips. The wood chips come in pecan, cherry, oak, alder, hickory, mesquite, and maple, among others. The veggies here are a mix of roasted Brussels sprouts, yellow squash, slow-roasted tomatoes, and garlic-and-herb-marinated olives, a perfect foil for the Texmati brown rice.
Our new favorite is red beans and (brown) rice. We split an Aidell’s Organic Cajun-Style Andouille (made from chicken) link, which adds huge spicy flavor. The roasted miniature zucchini and wedge of cornbread completed this luscious meal.
More flex, here, with sea scallops and capers with whole wheat couscous and roasted asparagus. No butter in the fridge anymore, but I’m experimenting with a soy-based substitute made by Earth Balance.
First time I’ve ever eaten Brussel’s sprouts and liked them. These were tossed with a bit of olive oil and roasted with shallots.
More later. Time to go to work. Buck had one final (seriously, I promise) rewrite of the first two chapters of his manuscript and one more polish to add sheen to the total book, so we are set up on the conference table, reading aloud, with me challenging, then making changing to the computer file, and laughing (a lot). Buck’s manuscript has gotten commercial-grade good. And we’re having a blast. We sent a few query letters out late last year, then took a good hard look and realized it wasn’t quite ready for prime time. Different story now. This baby is ready to fling out into the world.