Being a Semi-Vegetarian

by Michele Pesula Kuegler | January 16th, 2017 | Tasty Thoughts

Ok, so I understand that it isn’t possible to be semi-vegetarian. Either one is or isn’t. I technically am not a vegetarian, as I do enjoy my fair share of meat. However, I do enjoy many a vegetarian dish and have many days where there isn’t meat in any of my meals. When I have days like that, I don’t feel deprived and truly enjoy my dishes.

Mid-January seems the right time to focus on vegetarian eating for a couple weeks. Hopefully those who have resolved to eat better in 2017 are still on track. Two weeks into this routine you may be bored with whatever foods you are eating, so my plan is to inspire you with a handful of vegetarian dishes. Although being a vegetarian dish doesn’t guarantee that it is healthy, these recipes will be. After a holiday season of indulgent eating, it is good to return to some lighter, healthier dishes.

This week I am focusing on vegetarian tapas dishes. We started our New Year with a Tapas Monday that was 100% vegetarian and satisfied both of us, even my carnivorous husband. With these two recipes I’ll help to distill the myth that vegetarian dishes are bland or tofu-focused.

Before we get to those new recipes, here are two of my favorite vegetarian tapas dishes from the archives:

Shredded Butternut Squash Cakes– These squash cakes are lighter than a hash brown but are just as filling. Serve them with Greek yogurt, hot sauce, ketchup, or a homemade spicy sauce. They pair well with prosecco and a number of other dishes, making them a perfect part of a tapas dinner.

French Onion Mushrooms– If you love French onion soup and all of its cheesy goodness and also adore mushrooms, this is the recipe for you. You get all of the flavor of the soup (without most of the broth) served in the perfect vessel- a portobello mushroom. Don’t worry, it’s topped with plenty of cheese, so it’s a pinch on the less healthy side. However, it’s worth the few extra minutes on the treadmill.

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