Archive for the ‘vegetarianism’ Category

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Following Jesus – 5 – Dehydrated Broccoli

October 12, 2009

Genesis 2:16 “And the Lord God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden…” NIV

Genesis 9:3-4 “Everything that lives and moves will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything… But you must not eat meat that has its lifeblood still in it.” NIV

Matthew 6:25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?” NIV

Food… ah food. What an incredibly divisive thing it can sometimes become. No doubt there will be a touch of hmm… irony? Probably not the correct term… but I write as a long-term vegetarian, so if I complain about people making a big deal out of food, it may well seem hypocritical. Sorry if it comes across that way, because that’s not my intention!

Here’s a quote from a book I read recently when researching for a university assignment: “The world now features more overweight than underweight people… This absurd situation is led by the US, where over half its citizens are clinically overweight. It possesses more people on diets than ever before, yet ever-more overweight people, too. Obesity-related illnesses and deaths, often brought on in major measure by gorging on oversized fast foods and drinks, are a major drag on the nation’s economy. In certain countries, fatty foods could eventually cause as many additional premature deaths as from AIDS. The UK has proposed a “fat tax” targeting obesity-related foods such as burgers.”

(From: Myers, N. and Kent, J. (2005). The New Gaia Atlas of Planet Management. London: Gaia. P. 67.)

That was published in 2005; the last I heard it was we Australians who top the list for fattest nation on the planet. Not a proud title, to be sure. I can’t find a straightforward statistic on that, unfortunately.

So, here we are: fat, diseased, obsessing over diets. What does this have to do with being a Christian, you may well ask? As the above Scriptures say, God is the ultimate creator and source of food. The Bible shows that, in the beginning, humans were given “green plants” to eat. As history progressed, and God interacted and intervened with His creation, food was often a part of His instructions – animals as food, but without consuming blood in Genesis 9; Leviticus detailing a lot of rules regarding food; and the New Testament exhorting us to not worry about what we eat, because it’s not the main part of life. God does not ask us to separate the physical and spiritual realms (which is, I believe, an aspect of Gnosticism). He created our bodies, with all their fascinating functions and purposes.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.” NIV

However, it is certainly a significant issue. What made me think of it was when I caught a clip on a tv show recently, where the presenters were hailing the ‘newly discovered’ health benefits of broccoli. Then the presenters debated – and I hope it was a joke, but it probably wasn’t – how to get children to eat this magical new form of cancer-preventing, life changing broccoli. The solution was to dehydrate, powder and turn into tablet form a kind of broccoli that children will actually eat. Like I say, I hope it was a sad joke – but the way people around me talk, in their day to day lives about food – one would think that vegetables can only be consumed in tablet form.

Now, perhaps my family is a bit odd. We are vegetarians, after all. But my young children eat broccoli without a fuss. They also eat myriad other vegetables and fruits. We certainly don’t need to give them vegetables in tablet form. They eat all sorts of things – last night (as I write) it was fresh olives, avocado, mixed vegetable patties, and a slice of wholegrain bread. No powdered vegetable tablets. No ice cream or milkshakes or other junk. Just a mixed platter of mostly fresh foods.

Sometimes I wonder if our attitudes to food reflect the way we view the rest of our life. I am sympathetic to the philosophy that food is becoming bland and homogenised and too sped up. Where is the time to enjoy the variety, the flavours, the time spent with family and friends over a good meal?

Instead, we seem to be looking for a quick fix, an easy way out. Stuff down that fatty hamburger and soft drink and appease the guilt with a powdered broccoli pill. We look for cures for terrible diseases that may well be prevented through lifestyle changes. We consume more than we need while millions are dying from starvation throughout the planet. It’s not a surprise that “gluttony” is considered one of the seven deadly sins. It encompasses the concept of complete lack of self-control combined with a withholding of possessions from the needy.

Now, I offer no simple solutions to this. I am not a nutritionist nor a social scientist (not yet!). But I do offer a couple of ideas based on what seems to be working for my family:

a vegetarian or (in the case of some family members) mostly vegetarian lifestyle

eating a variety of different fruits and vegetables

eating plenty of grains – not just wheat, but rice, polenta, rye and many more

including legumes / beans in our daily food intake

sitting down together at the dining table for all meals

trying to allow the time to prepare meals

being aware of seasonal produce

buying local, where possible

not telling our children that we don’t expect them to like broccoli!

ensuring we have a deliberate source of  B12

not leaping on fad diets that promise ‘instant’ weight loss

walking or exercising regularly

switching off the tv

menu planning in advance – and trying something new

incorporating many different styles of cooking – we aren’t interested in tofu substitutes for meals normally consumed by white, middle class Australians, we are looking to try often natural vegetarian meals derived from a variety of cultures.

These aren’t just health options; they are also, we hope, beneficial for the environment – which encompasses the dimension of seeking to help our fellow humans by not destroying the world just to get a fast food hamburger. It also inspires compassion towards God’s creatures. Hmm. That’ll do for now. I’m hungry…

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Following Jesus – 3 – Nature

September 28, 2009

Abell 2667 - From www.nasaimages.org

Abell 2667 - From http://www.nasaimages.org

Nature is full of some incredible things. The magnificent beauty of the galaxies. The colour and scent of flowers. The satisfaction of eating fresh vegetables that have grown in the garden. The majesty of the large beasts. The cuteness of the small beasts!

There’s some amazing stuff out there. The more that humans explore nature, the more we find. The further we travel, the more stars we find. The smaller the objects we can see, the more layers of reality are discovered. The intricate workings of the human body still have their many mysteries. Even the simplest life form is incredibly complex.

God is amazingly creative. He’s made a world of such awesome wonders. It’s amazing how creation isn’t just functional, it’s beautiful. Think of the creatures that inhabit the dark depths of the ocean but are spectacularly colourful. Or the incredible designs on butterfly wings.

The interesting thing with following Jesus is that nature takes on a new significance: nature has been made by a loving creator for His purposes and enjoyment. He has made humanity, in His image and likeness, to dwell in this world of matter.

The spiritual life isn’t about denying the material things, but putting them in their correct priority. We do not pretend that suffering doesn’t exist; we use what we have to alleviate suffering.

Luke 12:33 (NIV)

Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will not be exhausted, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys.

Nature is not, then, a deity in itself. It has been made by The Deity, to serve His purposes. However, nowhere do I see in the Bible that this is permission to plunder the Earth’s resources. Indeed, when we damage the environment, we destroy the world in which other people live. Caring for the environment is, I believe, a reasonable way of responding to God’s creation. Think of how He made a beautiful Garden, Eden, and placed the man and woman there to tend it and care for it. He did not say, “go and destroy this Garden in your quest for material possessions.”

Genesis 2:15

The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.

I read a while back an interesting idea that Christian environmentalism incorporates the human element.* Rather than deifying nature, and downgrading humans, it seeks to take into account how the human treatment of the planet affects not only nature but all humanity, too. It included an awareness of such things as the manufacturing conditions of the products we buy. I personally believe there are many good environmentalist arguments for vegetarianism, for example, as well as acknowledging that many foods suitable for human consumption are instead fed to farm animals, which are then consumed by the small proportion of rich Westerners who can afford fast food. I digress. What was the point I was trying to make? Ah, yes – that being a follower of Jesus necessarily impacts on the way I perceive nature.

All too often we followers of Jesus have been linked to a philosophy of guns, hunting, destruction of the planet, and cruelty to animals and even to our fellow humans. But surely there is a distinction between religious ‘Christianity,’ in which man-made rules become the highest law; and a life genuinely lived following the Lord Jesus Christ and living as those called to tend His Garden? While such things – environmentalism, issues of diet, and our treatment of nature – may well be secondary to the primary issue of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, one of our greatest apologetics is found in the way we live our life.

Peter 3:15-16 (NCV)

But respect Christ as the holy Lord in your hearts. Always be ready to answer everyone who asks you to explain about the hope you have, but answer in a gentle way and with respect. Keep a clear conscience so that those who speak evil of your good life in Christ will be made ashamed.

Finally, acknowledging God as Creator has significant effects on my life: I have Someone to thank for the glorious wonders of nature. I can enjoy and appreciate animals, plants, the changing seasons, the stars, the weather, the land formations… I can also be creative – as I am made in the likeness of Creator God, so He has bestowed at least a little of His creativity on all His people. I have a reason to care what happens to the planet, and to do what I can to look after the environment. And I can enjoy the spectacular discoveries of the natural sciences, as human exploration reveals more and more of God’s spectacular works.

*David Tyler, Creation – Chance or Design?

Following Jesus

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By Request?

April 21, 2009

I’m interested in hearing from regular readers (and there must be a few of you because in just over a year I’ve had 30,500 hits on this site). I would like to know if there are any topics on which you would particularly like me to write a blog post. I think it’s a symptom of the fact that I am doing half my usual university study load this semester, and would like to take advantage of the extra time to perhaps write a few short blog posts on up to 5 requested topics.

Please use the comments box to add your (genuine) suggestions. If you are reading this on facebook.com, please follow the provided link to the WordPress Blog and add your comments there.

Suggested topics might include:

– Australian culture.

– Thoroughbred horse pedigrees (maybe there’s a particular horse you’re interested in and want to know a bit about its family). Australian horses preferred.

– Christianity and Apologetics. Have you got any questions about a particular area of apologetics? I may be able to dig up some information for you (as an interested layperson).

– Art! This is primarily an art blog, so I should probably write on art at least once in a while!

– Maybe you have some suggested ideas for my RedBubble Online Store and Gallery, where I sell some of my art designs as t-shirts and art prints.

– Vegetarianism. Do you have any questions about vegetarianism?

– Environmentalism issues.

– Books! I read a lot of books… so I might have some suggested reading ideas for you.

I really hope my readers can help me with this! Be creative.  🙂

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September Seasonal Foods

August 26, 2008

There is so much to be eaten! 🙂 There are plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables, herbs and nuts available in Victorian markets.

I don’t think it would be reasonable for a Victorian vegetarian, like myself, to ever whinge that there aren’t enough foods to make vegetarian dining interesting!

Please go look at the website where I found this information, as it provides specific information on individual products, including seasonal availability, nutritional information, basic preparation, recipes and handy photos. Especially if, like me, you’re asking “What on Earth is an Abiu?”! (The answer is at http://www.marketfresh.com.au/produce_guide/product.asp?ID=4!)

Some seasonal produce generally available in September in Victoria (referenced from, and for further information, http://www.marketfresh.com.au/):

Abiu (Caimo, Cauje)
Apple
Avocado (Avocado Pear)
Banana (sugar banana)
Bell Fruit (Water Apple, Water Cherry, Watery Rose-apple)
Black Sapote (Black persimmon, Chocolate Pudding Fruit)
Blueberry
Buddha’s Hand (Fingered citron)
Carambola (Five corner, Star fruit)
Casimiroa (White Sapote)
Coconut
Custard Apple (Atemoya, Bullocks Heart, Cherimoya, Netted Custard Apple, Sweetsop)
Date
Dragon Fruit (Pitahaya, strawberry pear)
Granadilla
Grapefruit
Guava (Apple guava, Gyayaba, Jambu batu)
Indian Apple
Jaboticaba
Jakfruit (Nangka Jaca)
Jambu (Jambolan)
Kiwifruit (Chinese gooseberry, Yangtao)
Lemon
Lime (makrut)
Loquat
Mandarin
Mango (Indian Mango, Mangga)
Melon
Miracle Fruit (Miraculous berry)
Nashi (Apple-Pear, Asian Pear, Crystal Pear, Oriental Pear, Sand Pear)
Olive
Orange
Passionfruit
Paw Paw (Papaw, Papaya)
Pear
Pepino (Melon pear, Papino)
Pineapple
Pummelo (Pamplemouse, Shaddock)
Rhubarb
Rollinia (biriba, countess’ fruit, South American custard apple)
Sapodilla (Chico)
Soursop (Guanabana)
Star Apple (Caimito)
Strawberry
Tamarillo (Tree Tomato)
Tamarind (Arabic: tamr hindi (Indian date), Thai: makham, Vietnamese: me )
Tangelo
Youngberry
Amaranth (Bahasa: bayam, Chinese: een choi or edible amaranth, English: Chinese spinach, Greek: vlita (green variety), Thai: phak khom suan, Vietnamese: rau dên)
Artichoke
Asparagus
Bamboo Shoot (Chinese: chuk sun, Thai: nor mai, Vietnamese: măng)
Banana Blossom (Thai: hua pli)
Banana Leaf (Thai: bai tong)
Bean (flat bean, long bean, yard long bean)
Beetroot (Beet)
Bitter Melon (Bahasa: peria, Chinese: foo gwa, English: bitter gourd or balsam pear, Thai: mara)
Bitter Melon Leaf (Bahasa: daun peria, Chinese: foo gwa yip, English: bitter gourd leaves, Thai: bai mara)
Bok Choi (bok choy, pak choi, pak choy, shanghai chinese chard)
Broccoflower (A hybrid mix of cauliflower and broccoli.)
Broccoli (Chinese kale, White flowering broccoli , Gai Lan)
Brussel Sprout
Cabbage (Chinese Mustard Cabbage, leaf mustard, Napa Cabbage, Peking Cabbage, Swatow mustard cabbage, Wombok, Wong Bok)
Capsicum (Chilli, Paprika, Peppers)
Carrot
Cauliflower
Celeriac (Celery root)
Celery
Chilli Leaf (English: chilli leaves, Thai: bai prik )
Chinese Boxthorn (Chinese: gau gei choi, English: chinese wolfberry, Vietnamese: kâu ky)
Choi Sum (Chinese: choi sum, English: Chinese flowering cabbage, Thai: pak kwang tung )
Choko (Chayote)
Cucumber
Curry Leaf (Bahasa: daun kari, English: Indian curry leaves, Hindi: meetha neem, Sri Lanka: karapincha )
Drumstick (English: horseradish tree or ben oil tree, Thai: marum, Vietnamese: chum ngây)
Eggplant (Aubergine, Oriental eggplant)
Fennel
Garland Chrysanthemum (Chinese: tong ho, English: chrysanthemum greens, Japanese: shungiku)
Hairy Melon (Chinese: tseet gwa (mo gwa), English: hairy gourd or fuzzy gourd, Thai: mafeng, Vietnamese: bí đao)
Horseradish
Jute/Jew Mallow (Arabic: melokhia, English: potherb jute or bush okra, Thai: po krachao, Vietnamese: rau đay)
Kale (Borecole, Collard, German Cabbage, Scotch Cabbage)
La Lot (, Bahasa: daun kadok, English: wild betel, Thai: bai chaplu , fish plant)
Leek
Lettuce (asparagus lettuce, woh sun, stem lettuce)
Long Melon (Fuzzy Melon, White Gourd, Winter Melon)
Lotus Root (Bahasa: ubi teratai, Chinese: lin or leen ngau or lianou, English: lotus root, Thai: rak bua)
Luffa (angled luffa, Chinese okra, loohfas, ridged gourd, ridged melon, smooth luffa, sponge gourd, vegetable/bonnet gourd)
Mache (Corn Salad, Lamb’s Lettuce)
Mushroom
Okra (Bahasa: bendi, Chinese: huang qiu kui or yong kok dau, English: lady’s fingers, Thai: krachiap)
Onion
Pandanus (Bahasa: daun pandan, English: pandan or fragrant screwpine, Thai: toei horm)
Parsnip
Paw Paw Blossom (Papaw Blossom, Papaya Blossom)
Pea Shelling
Pea Snow (Chinese: Hoh laan dau, English: sweet pea or Chinese pea, Thai: tua lan tau)
Pea Sugarsnap (Chinese: Hoh laan dau, English: sweet pea or Chinese pea, Thai: tua lan tau )
Pennywort (English: Indian pennywort, Thai: bua bok, Vietnamese: rau má)
Peperomia (English: peperomia or crab claw plant, Thai: phak krasang, Vietnamese: càng cua)
Potato
Pumpkin
Pumpkin Leaf (English: pumpkin Leaves)
Radish (Cheng loh baak, Daikon, Green oriental radish, Lo Baak, Long white radish, Red radish)
Shallot (Eschallot, Shallot)
Silverbeet (Swiss Chard)
Spinach (Malabar Spinach, Slippery Vegetable, English Spinach, Swamp Cabbage, True Spinach, Water Spinach)
Spring Onion (Bahasa: daun bawang, English: Eschallots or green onion, Thai: ton horm, Vietnamese: hành lá)
Sprout (Alfalfa, Bean Sprouts, Mung Bean Sprouts, Snow pea shoots)
Squash (Button Squash, Scallopini)
Sugar Cane (English: sugar cane, Thai: oi )
Swede
Sweet Corn (Corn)
Sweet Potato (Bahasa: ubi keledek, Chinese: Faan sue, English: sweet potato or sweetpotato or kumara, Thai: man thet, Vietnamese: khoai lang)
Sweet Potato Leaf (English: Sweet potato leaves, Vietnamese: Iá khoai lang )
Taro (Bahasa: ubi keladi, Chinese: woo tau, English: Taro or dasheen, Thai: peuak)
Taro Shoot (Chinese: woo hap, English: taro stems, Thai: born)
Tatsoi (Chinese: taai goo choi, English: rosette bok choi or Chinese flat cabbage, Japanese: tatsoi)
Tomato
Turnip
Vietnamese Balm (English: Vietnamese balm, Thai: phak leuan)
Watercress (Chinese: sai yeung choi, English: watercress, Thai: phakkat-nam, Vietnamese: xà lách son)
Winged Bean (Bahasa: kacang botol, Chinese: yi dou, English: asparagus bean or Goa bean, Thai: tua pu)
Witlof (Belgian Endive, Chicory, Witloof)
Yam (Bahasa: ubi kemali, Chinese: da shu or tai shue or shuyu, English: yam or water yam, Thai: man)
Yam Bean (Bahasa: bangkuang, Chinese: sa got, English: jicama or yam bean, Thai: man gaeo)
Zucchini (Courgette)
Almond Nut
Basil (sweet basil, thai basil)
Bitter Herb (Chinese: foo yip, English: bitter herb, Thai: phak kuang, Vietnamese: rau đăng)
Brazil Nut
Cashew Nut
Chervil
Chickpea
Chilli
Chive (Onion Chives)
Coriander (Chinese: Uen sai, English: coriander or cilantro, Thai: pak chee )
Dill
Fenugreek (Hindi: methi)
Galangal (Bahasa: lengkuas, Chinese: hang dou kou, English: Siamese ginger or galingale, Thai: kha)
Garlic (Bahasa: bawang putih, Chinese: da suan or suan tau, English: garlic, Thai: gratiem)
Ginger (Bahasa: halia, Chinese: geung, English: ginger, Thai: khing)
Hazelnut
Kaffir Lime Leaf (Kaffir Lime Leaves)
Lemon Grass (Bahasa: serai, Chinese: heong mau, English: lemon grass, Thai: takrai)
Macadamia Nut
Marjoram (Oregano, Sweet Marjoram)
Mint (common mint)
Oregano
Parsley
Peanut
Pecan Nut
Pepper
Perilla (Chinese: gee so or jen, English: beefsteak plant or shiso, Japanese: shiso (green) & aka shiso (red))
Pine Nut
Pistachio Nut
Rice Paddy Herb (English: Rice paddy herb or finger grass, Thai: phak kayaeng)
Rosemary
Tarragon
Thyme (Citrus Thyme)
Turmeric (Bahasa: kunyit, English: turmeric, Thai: khamin)
Walnut
Water Chestnut (Chinese: ma taai, English: Chinese water chestnut, Thai: haeo jin)

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Cleaners

July 7, 2008

Due to the high levels of allergy problems in our household, we’ve had to look into finding products and brands that will help. So, lately I’ve been switching to plant-based, organic, petroleum-free products.

Here is a Victorian-based company whose cleaning products and haircare products I’ve been using recently:

http://www.naturesorganics.com.au/

I’ll add more products as I find them. I’m not into all this commercial stuff, but if it can help other allergy sufferers, then it’ll be worthwhile.

(Disclaimer: Check the ingredients on the labels for yourself. No responsibility taken for anyone following these links.)

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Food For June

May 12, 2008

Well, winter’s coming up (for us Australians, that is!) and in the Victoria region, there are heaps of fresh fruits, vegetables and more available in June.

I have previously posted on this topic, with a seasonal vegetables in May list. The list is from the Market Fresh website, and I strongly encourage you to visit the site for yourself. It has seasonal availability search functions, plus links to recipes for most of the produce they sell. So, you won’t have an excuse because even the ‘exotic’ foods are described on their site!

For example, for a herb like basil, you can click on a link to the descriptive page regarding that plant, including the different varieties, their seasonal availability, plus the recipes on the site containing basil (see http://www.marketfresh.com.au/produce_guide/product.asp?ID=12).

One of the keys to successful vegetarianism is to eat a variety of plants. It’s not much good if you just eat 5 apples a day. There are a lot of fruits, vegetables and more out there for you to try, and they’re easily accessible.

June Seasonal Fruits, Vegetables, Herbs and Nuts – Victoria, Australia

Apple
Avocado (Avocado Pear)
Banana (sugar banana)
Black Sapote (Black persimmon, Chocolate Pudding Fruit)
Breadfruit (Sukun)
Buddha’s Hand (Fingered citron)
Carambola (Five corner, Star fruit)
Cherry
Coconut
Custard Apple (Atemoya, Bullocks Heart, Cherimoya, Netted Custard Apple, Sweetsop)
Date
Dragon Fruit (Pitahaya, strawberry pear)
Feijoa (Guavasteen, Pineapple guava)
Granadilla
Grape
Grapefruit
Guava (Apple guava, Gyayaba, Jambu batu)
Indian Apple
Jakfruit (Nangka Jaca)
Kiwifruit (Chinese gooseberry, Yangtao)
Lemon
Lime (makrut)
Mandarin
Melon
Miracle Fruit (Miraculous berry)
Nashi (Apple-Pear, Asian Pear, Crystal Pear, Oriental Pear, Sand Pear)
Olive
Orange
Passionfruit
Paw Paw (Papaw, Papaya)
Pear
Persimmon (Kaki)
Pineapple
Pomegranate
Pummelo (Pamplemouse, Shaddock)
Quince
Rhubarb
Soursop (Guanabana)
Star Apple (Caimito)
Strawberry
Tamarillo (Tree Tomato)
Tamarind (Arabic: tamr hindi (Indian date), Thai: makham, Vietnamese: me )
Tangelo
Amaranth (Bahasa: bayam, Chinese: een choi or edible amaranth, English: Chinese spinach, Greek: vlita (green variety), Thai: phak khom suan, Vietnamese: rau dên)
Artichoke
Asparagus
Bamboo Shoot (Chinese: chuk sun, Thai: nor mai, Vietnamese: măng)
Banana Blossom (Thai: hua pli)
Banana Leaf (Thai: bai tong)
Bean (flat bean, long bean, yard long bean)
Beetroot (Beet)
Bitter Melon (Bahasa: peria, Chinese: foo gwa, English: bitter gourd or balsam pear, Thai: mara)
Bitter Melon Leaf (Bahasa: daun peria, Chinese: foo gwa yip, English: bitter gourd leaves, Thai: bai mara)
Bok Choi (bok choy, pak choi, pak choy, shanghai chinese chard)
Broccoflower (A hybrid mix of cauliflower and broccoli.)
Broccoli (Chinese kale, White flowering broccoli , Gai Lan)
Brussel Sprout
Cabbage (Chinese Mustard Cabbage, leaf mustard, Napa Cabbage, Peking Cabbage, Swatow mustard cabbage, Wombok, Wong Bok)
Capsicum (Chilli, Paprika, Peppers)
Carrot
Cauliflower
Celeriac (Celery root)
Celery
Chilli Leaf (English: chilli leaves, Thai: bai prik )
Chinese Boxthorn (Chinese: gau gei choi, English: chinese wolfberry, Vietnamese: kâu ky)
Choi Sum (Chinese: choi sum, English: Chinese flowering cabbage, Thai: pak kwang tung )
Choko (Chayote)
Cucumber
Curry Leaf (Bahasa: daun kari, English: Indian curry leaves, Hindi: meetha neem, Sri Lanka: karapincha )
Drumstick (English: horseradish tree or ben oil tree, Thai: marum, Vietnamese: chum ngây)
Eggplant (Aubergine, Oriental eggplant)
Fennel
Hairy Melon (Chinese: tseet gwa (mo gwa), English: hairy gourd or fuzzy gourd, Thai: mafeng, Vietnamese: bí đao)
Horseradish
Jute/Jew Mallow (Arabic: melokhia, English: potherb jute or bush okra, Thai: po krachao, Vietnamese: rau đay)
Kale (Borecole, Collard, German Cabbage, Scotch Cabbage)
Kohlrabi (Turnip-rooted cabbage)
La Lot (, Bahasa: daun kadok, English: wild betel, Thai: bai chaplu , fish plant)
Leek
Lettuce (asparagus lettuce, woh sun, stem lettuce)
Long Melon (Fuzzy Melon, White Gourd, Winter Melon)
Lotus Root (Bahasa: ubi teratai, Chinese: lin or leen ngau or lianou, English: lotus root, Thai: rak bua)
Luffa (angled luffa, Chinese okra, loohfas, ridged gourd, ridged melon, smooth luffa, sponge gourd, vegetable/bonnet gourd)
Mache (Corn Salad, Lamb’s Lettuce)
Mushroom
Onion
Pandanus (Bahasa: daun pandan, English: pandan or fragrant screwpine, Thai: toei horm)
Parsnip
Paw Paw Blossom (Papaw Blossom, Papaya Blossom)
Pea Shelling
Pea Snow (Chinese: Hoh laan dau, English: sweet pea or Chinese pea, Thai: tua lan tau)
Pea Sugarsnap (Chinese: Hoh laan dau, English: sweet pea or Chinese pea, Thai: tua lan tau )
Pennywort (English: Indian pennywort, Thai: bua bok, Vietnamese: rau má)
Peperomia (English: peperomia or crab claw plant, Thai: phak krasang, Vietnamese: càng cua)
Potato
Pumpkin
Radish (Cheng loh baak, Daikon, Green oriental radish, Lo Baak, Long white radish, Red radish)
Shallot (Eschallot, Shallot)
Silverbeet (Swiss Chard)
Spinach (Malabar Spinach, Slippery Vegetable, English Spinach, Swamp Cabbage, True Spinach, Water Spinach)
Spring Onion (Bahasa: daun bawang, English: Eschallots or green onion, Thai: ton horm, Vietnamese: hành lá)
Sprout (Alfalfa, Bean Sprouts, Mung Bean Sprouts, Snow pea shoots)
Squash (Button Squash, Scallopini)
Sugar Cane (English: sugar cane, Thai: oi )
Swede
Sweet Corn (Corn)
Sweet Potato (Bahasa: ubi keledek, Chinese: Faan sue, English: sweet potato or sweetpotato or kumara, Thai: man thet, Vietnamese: khoai lang)
Sweet Potato Leaf (English: Sweet potato leaves, Vietnamese: Iá khoai lang )
Taro (Bahasa: ubi keladi, Chinese: woo tau, English: Taro or dasheen, Thai: peuak)
Taro Shoot (Chinese: woo hap, English: taro stems, Thai: born)
Tatsoi (Chinese: taai goo choi, English: rosette bok choi or Chinese flat cabbage, Japanese: tatsoi)
Tomato
Turnip
Vegetable Spaghetti (Spaghetti Marrow, Spaghetti Squash)
Vietnamese Balm (English: Vietnamese balm, Thai: phak leuan)
Watercress (Chinese: sai yeung choi, English: watercress, Thai: phakkat-nam, Vietnamese: xà lách son)
Winged Bean (Bahasa: kacang botol, Chinese: yi dou, English: asparagus bean or Goa bean, Thai: tua pu)
Witlof (Belgian Endive, Chicory, Witloof)
Yam (Bahasa: ubi kemali, Chinese: da shu or tai shue or shuyu, English: yam or water yam, Thai: man)
Yam Bean (Bahasa: bangkuang, Chinese: sa got, English: jicama or yam bean, Thai: man gaeo)
Zucchini (Courgette)
Almond Nut
Basil (sweet basil, thai basil)
Bitter Herb (Chinese: foo yip, English: bitter herb, Thai: phak kuang, Vietnamese: rau đăng)
Brazil Nut
Cashew Nut
Chervil
Chestnut
Chickpea
Chilli
Chive (Onion Chives)
Coriander (Chinese: Uen sai, English: coriander or cilantro, Thai: pak chee )
Dill
Fenugreek (Hindi: methi)
Galangal (Bahasa: lengkuas, Chinese: hang dou kou, English: Siamese ginger or galingale, Thai: kha)
Garlic (Bahasa: bawang putih, Chinese: da suan or suan tau, English: garlic, Thai: gratiem)
Ginger (Bahasa: halia, Chinese: geung, English: ginger, Thai: khing)
Hazelnut
Kaffir Lime Leaf (Kaffir Lime Leaves)
Lemon Grass (Bahasa: serai, Chinese: heong mau, English: lemon grass, Thai: takrai)
Macadamia Nut
Marjoram (Oregano, Sweet Marjoram)
Mint (common mint)
Oregano
Parsley
Peanut
Pecan Nut
Pepper
Perilla (Chinese: gee so or jen, English: beefsteak plant or shiso, Japanese: shiso (green) & aka shiso (red))
Pine Nut
Pistachio Nut
Rice Paddy Herb (English: Rice paddy herb or finger grass, Thai: phak kayaeng)
Rosemary
Tarragon
Thyme (Citrus Thyme)
Turmeric (Bahasa: kunyit, English: turmeric, Thai: khamin)

Walnut

Water Chestnut (Chinese: ma taai, English: Chinese water chestnut, Thai: haeo jin)

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Vegetarian cravings…

April 22, 2008

For me, reading vegetarian recipes is generally a good indicator that either (a) I’m hungry or (b) I’m needing a health fix. In this case it’s probably both! While I do try to eat healthy and exercise, it seems that I became somewhat lazier than usual over the Easter break. So, here I am, exercising to try and work off the flab and browsing recipes to try and reduce my intake of junk foods! My exercise regime mainly consists of regular fast-paced walking most weekdays; and 20-minute aerobics sessions a few times a week.

Add to that, I’m not interested in vegetarian recipes that just take out the meat and add cheese or some sort of soy-based meat substitute. No, let’s get into the real stuff, the raw ingredients combined to make food where you know what it was, it still looks like what it was – where it hasn’t been processed beyond recognition.

I was having a browse yesterday in a bookstore‘s massive health and nutrition section. There were, thankfully, more vegetarian and vegan-friendly books than last time I looked at this topic. There were also the books that are very anti-vegetarian, telling people to eat more meat, more fatty fod, etc. to lose weight!

To try and simplify things, I like to keep the PCRM 4 food groups in mind when planning my menu for the coming weeks:

  1. grains
  2. legumes
  3. fruits
  4. vegetables

This provides a great starting point for developing meals. A variety of each of these types of foods contribute to increased energy and good health (at least, it has for me!).

I also find the Market Fresh website excellent in finding locally available seasonal produce in Victoria (Australia). Here’s what’s available in Victoria in May (from MarketFresh.Com.Au, with detailed descriptions of each product and recipes available on the MarketFresh site):

Apple
Avocado (Avocado Pear)
Banana (sugar banana)
Black Sapote (Black persimmon, Chocolate Pudding Fruit)
Blueberry
Breadfruit (Sukun)
Carambola (Five corner, Star fruit)
Coconut
Custard Apple (Atemoya, Bullocks Heart, Cherimoya, Netted Custard Apple, Sweetsop)
Date
Dragon Fruit (Pitahaya, strawberry pear)
Feijoa (Guavasteen, Pineapple guava)
Granadilla
Grape
Grapefruit
Guava (Apple guava, Gyayaba, Jambu batu)
Indian Apple
Jakfruit (Nangka Jaca)
Kiwifruit (Chinese gooseberry, Yangtao)
Lemon
Lime (makrut)
Mandarin
Melon
Miracle Fruit (Miraculous berry)
Monstera (Ceriman)
Nashi (Apple-Pear, Asian Pear, Crystal Pear, Oriental Pear, Sand Pear)
Olive
Orange
Passionfruit
Paw Paw (Papaw, Papaya)
Pear
Pepino (Melon pear, Papino)
Persimmon (Kaki)
Pineapple
Pomegranate
Prickly Pear (Indian Fig)
Quince
Rambutan
Rhubarb
Rosella
Soursop (Guanabana)
Strawberry
Sugar Apple (Custard Apple)
Tamarillo (Tree Tomato)
Tamarind (Arabic: tamr hindi (Indian date), Thai: makham, Vietnamese: me )
Amaranth (Bahasa: bayam, Chinese: een choi or edible amaranth, English: Chinese spinach, Greek: vlita (green variety), Thai: phak khom suan, Vietnamese: rau dên)
Asparagus
Bamboo Shoot (Chinese: chuk sun, Thai: nor mai, Vietnamese: măng)
Banana Blossom (Thai: hua pli)
Banana Leaf (Thai: bai tong)
Bean (flat bean, long bean, yard long bean)
Beetroot (Beet)
Bitter Melon (Bahasa: peria, Chinese: foo gwa, English: bitter gourd or balsam pear, Thai: mara)
Bitter Melon Leaf (Bahasa: daun peria, Chinese: foo gwa yip, English: bitter gourd leaves, Thai: bai mara)
Bok Choi (bok choy, pak choi, pak choy, shanghai chinese chard)
Broccoflower (A hybrid mix of cauliflower and broccoli.)
Broccoli (Chinese kale, White flowering broccoli , Gai Lan)
Brussel Sprout
Cabbage (Chinese Mustard Cabbage, leaf mustard, Napa Cabbage, Peking Cabbage, Swatow mustard cabbage, Wombok, Wong Bok)
Capsicum (Chilli, Paprika, Peppers)
Carrot
Cauliflower
Celeriac (Celery root)
Celery
Chilli Leaf (English: chilli leaves, Thai: bai prik )
Chinese Boxthorn (Chinese: gau gei choi, English: chinese wolfberry, Vietnamese: kâu ky)
Choi Sum (Chinese: choi sum, English: Chinese flowering cabbage, Thai: pak kwang tung )
Choko (Chayote)
Cucumber
Curry Leaf (Bahasa: daun kari, English: Indian curry leaves, Hindi: meetha neem, Sri Lanka: karapincha )
Drumstick (English: horseradish tree or ben oil tree, Thai: marum, Vietnamese: chum ngây)
Eggplant (Aubergine, Oriental eggplant)
Fennel
Hairy Melon (Chinese: tseet gwa (mo gwa), English: hairy gourd or fuzzy gourd, Thai: mafeng, Vietnamese: bí đao)
Horseradish
Jute/Jew Mallow (Arabic: melokhia, English: potherb jute or bush okra, Thai: po krachao, Vietnamese: rau đay)
La Lot (, Bahasa: daun kadok, English: wild betel, Thai: bai chaplu , fish plant)
Leek
Lettuce (asparagus lettuce, woh sun, stem lettuce)
Long Melon (Fuzzy Melon, White Gourd, Winter Melon)
Lotus Root (Bahasa: ubi teratai, Chinese: lin or leen ngau or lianou, English: lotus root, Thai: rak bua)
Luffa (angled luffa, Chinese okra, loohfas, ridged gourd, ridged melon, smooth luffa, sponge gourd, vegetable/bonnet gourd)
Mache (Corn Salad, Lamb’s Lettuce)
Mushroom
Okra (Bahasa: bendi, Chinese: huang qiu kui or yong kok dau, English: lady’s fingers, Thai: krachiap)
Onion
Pandanus (Bahasa: daun pandan, English: pandan or fragrant screwpine, Thai: toei horm)
Parsnip
Paw Paw Blossom (Papaw Blossom, Papaya Blossom)
Pea Shelling
Pea Snow (Chinese: Hoh laan dau, English: sweet pea or Chinese pea, Thai: tua lan tau)
Pea Sugarsnap (Chinese: Hoh laan dau, English: sweet pea or Chinese pea, Thai: tua lan tau )
Peperomia (English: peperomia or crab claw plant, Thai: phak krasang, Vietnamese: càng cua)
Potato
Pumpkin
Pumpkin Leaf (English: pumpkin Leaves)
Radish (Cheng loh baak, Daikon, Green oriental radish, Lo Baak, Long white radish, Red radish)
Shallot (Eschallot, Shallot)
Silverbeet (Swiss Chard)
Spinach (Malabar Spinach, Slippery Vegetable, English Spinach, Swamp Cabbage, True Spinach, Water Spinach)
Spring Onion (Bahasa: daun bawang, English: Eschallots or green onion, Thai: ton horm, Vietnamese: hành lá)
Sprout (Alfalfa, Bean Sprouts, Mung Bean Sprouts, Snow pea shoots)
Squash (Button Squash, Scallopini)
Sugar Cane (English: sugar cane, Thai: oi )
Swede
Sweet Corn (Corn)
Sweet Potato (Bahasa: ubi keledek, Chinese: Faan sue, English: sweet potato or sweetpotato or kumara, Thai: man thet, Vietnamese: khoai lang)
Sweet Potato Leaf (English: Sweet potato leaves, Vietnamese: Iá khoai lang )
Taro (Bahasa: ubi keladi, Chinese: woo tau, English: Taro or dasheen, Thai: peuak)
Taro Shoot (Chinese: woo hap, English: taro stems, Thai: born)
Tatsoi (Chinese: taai goo choi, English: rosette bok choi or Chinese flat cabbage, Japanese: tatsoi)
Tomato
Turnip
Vegetable Spaghetti (Spaghetti Marrow, Spaghetti Squash)
Vietnamese Balm (English: Vietnamese balm, Thai: phak leuan)
Watercress (Chinese: sai yeung choi, English: watercress, Thai: phakkat-nam, Vietnamese: xà lách son)
Winged Bean (Bahasa: kacang botol, Chinese: yi dou, English: asparagus bean or Goa bean, Thai: tua pu)
Witlof (Belgian Endive, Chicory, Witloof)
Yam (Bahasa: ubi kemali, Chinese: da shu or tai shue or shuyu, English: yam or water yam, Thai: man)
Yam Bean (Bahasa: bangkuang, Chinese: sa got, English: jicama or yam bean, Thai: man gaeo)
Zucchini (Courgette)
Zucchini Flower
Almond Nut
Basil (sweet basil, thai basil)
Bitter Herb (Chinese: foo yip, English: bitter herb, Thai: phak kuang, Vietnamese: rau đăng)
Brazil Nut
Cashew Nut
Chervil
Chestnut
Chickpea
Chilli
Chive (Onion Chives)
Coriander (Chinese: Uen sai, English: coriander or cilantro, Thai: pak chee )
Dill
Fenugreek (Hindi: methi)
Galangal (Bahasa: lengkuas, Chinese: hang dou kou, English: Siamese ginger or galingale, Thai: kha)
Garlic (Bahasa: bawang putih, Chinese: da suan or suan tau, English: garlic, Thai: gratiem)
Ginger (Bahasa: halia, Chinese: geung, English: ginger, Thai: khing)
Hazelnut
Kaffir Lime Leaf (Kaffir Lime Leaves)
Lemon Grass (Bahasa: serai, Chinese: heong mau, English: lemon grass, Thai: takrai)
Macadamia Nut
Marjoram (Oregano, Sweet Marjoram)
Mint (common mint)
Oregano
Parsley
Peanut
Pecan Nut
Pepper
Perilla (Chinese: gee so or jen, English: beefsteak plant or shiso, Japanese: shiso (green) & aka shiso (red))
Pine Nut
Pistachio Nut
Rice Paddy Herb (English: Rice paddy herb or finger grass, Thai: phak kayaeng)
Rosemary
Tarragon
Thyme (Citrus Thyme)
Turmeric (Bahasa: kunyit, English: turmeric, Thai: khamin)
Walnut
Water Chestnut (Chinese: ma taai, English: Chinese water chestnut, Thai: haeo jin)

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