Rox Does Yoga

Yoga, Wellness, and Life

Vegetarianism: Further Restaurant Adventures May 15, 2011

Filed under: reflections,yoga lifestyle — R. H. Ward @ 1:31 pm
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I can now confirm officially that Quiznos wins over Subway. Quiznos’ veggie sub includes sauteed mushrooms and guacamole. They also have a veggie wrap. Now I know which sandwich shop works better for me!

F and I went to a fancy Mexican restaurant last Saturday, where I had my first “this ought to be vegetarian but isn’t” mishap. We ordered the elote appetizer: a corn and cheese dish that was amazing. After we finished, F asked the waitress about the ingredients, and it turned out that the corn was cooked in chicken stock. This wasn’t indicated on the menu, so there’s no way I could have known. I’m not going to guilt myself about this.

This made me think about how much I can control what I eat at a restaurant. At home, I know exactly what goes into my meal and how the food is prepared, but not at a restaurant. If I want to eat out sometimes (and I do), all I can do is to do my best not to eat meat. Sometimes accidents will happen, like at this Mexican restaurant. I don’t know what goes on in the kitchen – maybe my portobello sandwich is cooked on the same grill with F’s hamburger, or right in the same oil. If so, there’s nothing I can do about that. I try to choose restaurants that cook in healthy ways,and I order meat-free food at those restaurants, but I can’t micromanage and control every aspect of the cooking process. I can ony do what I can, and then let go of the results.

This incident also made me think of a friend of mine who’s been vegetarian since childhood and has never eaten meat. Once we went to a Mexican place together and she accidentally ate something that had been cooked in chicken stock, and it made her sick because her body just didn’t know how to process it. I’m nowhere near that point, but I may just email the restaurant to suggest that they add more information to their menu. No one wants to go out for a nice dinner and get sick afterward. This is also a reminder that I need to be careful at Mexican restaurants; my sister-in-law, who works in the food industry, says that most Mexican places cook their rice in chicken stock. Now that I know, I can be more careful in the future.

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2 Responses to “Vegetarianism: Further Restaurant Adventures”

  1. Sophie Says:

    It’s also okay to ask in advance. It’s something that I find hard to do sometimes – I feel like I’m making a fuss, but if you look at it from the POV that someone could get sick because of an allergy or food intolerance it really shouldn’t be a problem.

    And there’s no reason to feel guilty because of it. For a while, I bought bread that turned out not to be vegan, but when I found out I stopped buying it. If I had continued buying it after I was aware of it it would have been a different matter.

    We can always only do so much. As long as we do our best to follow what we think it’s right it’s okay, I think.

    • R. H. Ward Says:

      Thanks, Sophie. I think I’m wondering about the line between being careful and being paranoid. At our dinner last week, there was no indication from the menu description that this corn dish would be anything other than corn and cheese, so I wouldn’t even have thought to ask! I don’t want to be paranoid and feel like I need to ask about everything, you know? That just seems like a burden.


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