The Vegan Tales — Soup is Good Food

I decided one day last week to become a vegan for a month. I picked September 1 as the day to start. Why did I pick that day? That’s when my friend Robert St. John started his month of veganism last year, and I got the idea of just doing this for one month from him. Also, starting on the first day of the month seemed like good symmetry.

What do I hope to accomplish? Who knows? Here are some things I wonder. Will I lose weight (yes, of course that’s at the top of my list)? Will I feel better (it could happen)? Will I handle being a vegan well enough to handle staying on the diet longer than a month? I don’t necessarily plan to be a vegan long-term. I only plan to spend a month learning what it is like and learning whether I feel any benefits from it.

So far I’ve learned that this takes some preparation. I haven’t been a very good vegan in my first three days. Yesterday, I ate an English muffin that I thought was vegan and then later discovered was not. All three days, I’ve waited until later in the afternoon to eat lunch because I didn’t have it together to come up with something vegan that I could call a meal. That’s not to say I ate nothing. I grazed. I ate a few raisins here and a few almonds there. And to be fair this is not so much about going vegan as it is about being busy. The day before I went vegan I didn’t have lunch until later either. Instead I ate a Snicker’s bar and some Cheetos. The raisins and almonds may have been an improvement after all. Still, it’s just harder when you’re starting something new to come up with a game plan, and I started this definitely not knowing what my game plan was.

Until I made soup, that is. This afternoon I made a big pot of vegetable soup, and it was good food, and I have a bunch of it in the refrigerator now for the coming week, and I’m thinking I’ll probably make it.

Don’t worry. This soup is not just good. It’s filling too. I started out with a minestrone mix, and I added tomatoes, chickpeas, black-eyed peas, squash, and barley. That bulked it up and provided a variety of nutrients as well.

I still have a lot to learn about how to be a vegan, but at least now I have soup. That and a jar of peanut butter ought to get me through until I can figure out a few more things to eat.