Saturday, March 17, 2012

Vegan Mondays


Somehow, once I had my boys, I started to value health more than I used to. I did my best to feed my kids the most nutritious foods and drive them to tennis and swimming lessons. But once I turned 40, healthy living took on a whole new meaning for me –I too must eat healthy and exercise, I realized. Wait… wasn’t my mom telling me that all my life? Yes, but who was listening!

So what is healthy living? Eat well, be active, stress less, enjoy life… Here I go again with all these unrealistic thoughts and ideas! And yet, I’ve got to somehow make it happen, so I decided to look into becoming a… vegan. Coincidently, on my way to pick up Alex from school, I was listening to Chloe Coscarelli’s interview on Martha’s Radio – she shared some fun vegan recipes as she was promoting her new book. I was inspired to start this healthy adventure of cooking vegan and, after I picked up Alex, we made a little detour to a bookstore.

I do bake often, but I don’t cook. It has been few years already that my boys and I realized that Varuzh is a very good cook, so we kept requesting him to make different dishes for us, and pretty soon this became his daily responsibility. And thanks to Varuzh’s great cooking, I had completely lost my own cooking skills.
 
But today, after searching through Chloe’s book, I found a great recipe for Tuscan Bean and Greens Soup and decided to refresh my rusty cooking skills.

“I will be making a vegan soup today,” I declared to Varuzh, wondering why he smiled and rolled his eyes. So I asked: “Why are you smiling?”

“Why Vegan?” he answered my question with a question. So I explained him that we too need to take care of our bodies and that vegan food just may be an answer. And I know that he is not sure if I am seriously serious about becoming a vegan, but he, as usual, decided to wait and see: “Sure, baby, you can try. Do you need any help with the soup?” I rejected his help with pride and ran off to the market to grab a few missing ingredients.

… I heard that if we cry from chopping an onion, this means that the knife is not sharp enough. Well, I have to say that we must have a very dull knife, and never mind that it took me forever to chop an onion! My cooking skills became truly rusty. Alex, who likes watching his dad cook, got bored and left to play in his room a long time ago.

 “Do you need any help, baby?” Varuzh entered the kitchen. “No I don’t,” I proudly said. “The dinner will be ready in just a few minutes. You can call Alex,” I declared. While Varuzh was fishing Alex out of his room, I set up the table.

The soup turned out truly delicious!!! The hearty smell, taste, the texture, and the great health benefits were all integrated into one bowl.  Varuzh loved the soup. He said it reminded him that I used to be very good at cooking and should do it more often.

I hope he did not mean that his cooking responsibilities would be shifted to me, I thought. I needed to find a solution fast: “I don’t think I can do it daily, but maybe I can do Vegan Mondays.”

Varuzh could see right through me, but he smiled and said: “Sounds great, baby.”  

Then he asked if we had a second course. 

Oh, I was supposed to make it, wasn’t I…

Signing off till Thursday.

With love, always,
xo Zuma A.

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