Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Small Steps

An easy first step to including more vegetarian meals in your life is to serve the chicken or meat in "appetizer-sized" portions for your main course. This means you need to tame your appetite before you sit down at the table.  So while you are cooking, dip red bell pepper strips into some store-bought hummus or a yogurt-based dip.

Also try starting your meal with a soup to increase your satiety and satisfaction.  Consider a  soup with beef or chicken broth as the base but loaded with vegetables, beans, rice or barley. Now you are primed to savor a 3-4 oz portion of protein without feeling deprived.  Use the best quality meat or poultry you can afford and serve it with a pan sauce you create from the browned bits of meat and poultry that stick to the pan as you are cooking it.

To create a pan sauce, after you brown the meat on both sides in a saute pan, remove it and hold in the oven to finish cooking or keep it warm while you prepare the pan sauce.  Add some diced onion, celery, garlic or other aromatic vegetables.  As they sweat in the pan splash in some wine to loosen up the browned bits of meat in the pan. Allow the wine to almost evaporate.  Now pour in about a cup or more of  chicken or beef broth and allow it to boil to reduce and thicken it.  You can also add a slurry of 1 tsp corn starch dissolved in a little liquid to the boiling broth and it will thicken it to a sauce consistency.  Soak up the sauce with bread, rice, pasta or some other grain and you won't miss the other 4 + ounces of animal protein that you usually eat.


  1. Hi Jenna, I always look forward to your posts! This one has some good tips. I love veggies and try to eat meat-free at least 2-3 times a week...Have a Wonderful Weekend!!!

  2. Hi Mary, Glad you're enjoying to posts. Please let me know if you have any good tips to share about part-time, meat-free living. Best wishes, Jen!