Understanding Vegetarianism

November 9, 2012


Is vegetarianism a special diet or a cuisine?  Diet comes from the Greek word “diatia” meaning a way of life or manner of living.  In our modern age it is often referred to as the kind and amount of food prescribed to a person for a specific biological condition.  Cuisine is often defined as the manner or style of preparing food and the food prepared.

Does vegetarianism fit into both definitions?  If it does fit into one or both definitions, how does a professional cook/chef address vegetarianism on their menu?  If you agree that vegetarianism is a dietary choice that would seem to present consumer challenges.  If you agree that it is a cuisine that presents an array of culinary challenges.  If it is both consumer/dietary and culinary without the special diet restrictions (i.e. no cholesterol or lactose free), how does a chef craft a menu that addresses both concepts?

Vegetarianism is a complex culinary challenge for professional chefs to address through their menu development.  What is your understanding of vegetarianism and how would you address it in menu development?

Since date

69 Responses to Understanding Vegetarianism

  1. anfadmin November 11, 2012 at 2:22 am #

    Frank and Mary Hoffman: We believe that the term vegan cuisine is the better choice, much in the same way we would refer to Chinese cuisine, French cuisine, Italian cuinine, or Mexican cuisine. However, within a vegan cuisine there can be various diets, such as a low fat diet, a gluten free diet, or a low salt diet.

    • Amine December 18, 2012 at 8:10 pm #

      Hi Michelle,Great site, and great idea: it’s one of those things that you think damn, I shluod have patented it 1st I’m in the UK, so don’t unfortunately have a Trader Joes, but I’ve tried the bagels and hummus route a few times, and it’s pretty good. I love black pepper and sea salt hummus: see if you can track it down if you’ve never had it. Gorgeous.I’d be very interested to see if you could say anything in future on how you’ve found communicating and talking about your veganism to friends/family/spouses. I’ve been vegan for years now, and still find this one of the most challenging, but also sometimes inspiring parts of my life.Respect,Barry

  2. Ron Pickarski November 13, 2012 at 8:14 am #

    Dear Frank and Mary,
    My understanding is that vegetarian covers all categories of the cuisine (i.e. lacto vegetarian, Ovo Vegetarian, Lacto-ovo Vegetarian and Vegan). Vegan cuisine can be low fat, gluten free or low sodium. But so can a carnivorous diet be gluten free or low fat so those types of eating are diets and not a cuisine.

    • Mohamed December 16, 2012 at 11:19 pm #

      I’d say that denying the degisn of 1 million years of evolution making us omnivores, is not a sign of intelligence at all but that’s a matter of opinion.I would hazard a guess that smart people are able to rationalize easier why to take steps in contradiction to the degisn of nature, or are simply more likely to dwell on the moral questions involved in killing animals for food and therefor build up a desire to take steps to mitigate. Hence, the trend in question here.Aside from a handful of Petards, the consensus of anthropologists is that predation is what drove our evolutionary course to develop the intellect that we have now, enabling us to delude ourselves into thinking that we are naturally herbivores. As Larry Niven points out, It doesn’t take any brains to sneak up on leaf. Other traits confirm the predatory nature of man. Our eyes are set forward, to provide binocular vision to help judge distance to prey. We have prominent canine teeth for tearing meat, which have in our evolutionary path shrunk a bit as we substituted tools for teeth in cutting flesh. Our digestive tracts are not long enough to fully utilize plant material, but have the traits found in omnivores and carnivores, geared around digesting meat. Meat is very easy to digest compared to any plant material and it packs a lot of energy into a very small package which in turn provides the building material allowing such a large brain to evolutionarily develop and function.The most telling organ showing our natural omnivorous state, is the appendix. This vestigial organ is most likely the remnants of a cecum, which is a where modern herbivores house bacteria that is used to digest cellulose, that cannot be digested otherwise. That we no longer have a cecum, nor the proper bacteria found in the cecum of herbivores, shows that we have been omnivores for a very long time and that even if we once were, we are not naturally obligate herbivores anymore.Another very telling mark is the requirement of vitamin B12 in human nerve and and blood development. B12 is not produced by any animal or plant alone, it is produced by various bacteria bacteria which thrive in living animals, but not in living plants. (There are B12 microorganisms which can be found in plants, but when they are present, the plants are rotting and inedible.) Since B12 is absolutely required for proper brain development in infants, it is essential that the child gets B12 through their mother’s milk. Before modern day vitamin supplements, the only way that B12 would be present in human milk, is if the mother is eating meat. A Vegan mother, back in the day before vitamin supplements, would have a child that would end up mentally retarded and most likely die from the resulting anemia.Last, but certainly not least, is the telling evidence of the violent capabilities of humans. Such violent behavior, to the extremes that we see in humans and other primates, are not found in obligate herbivores. Herbivores will fight to protect themselves (depending on the herbivore; rabbits for example fight like the Monty Python Vorpal Bunny when cornered) but they do not kill for apparent pleasure, as many carnivores including man do.Ultimately it is an undeniable fact: humans are not naturally obligate herbivores at least not anymore. Without a cecum, and with a requirement of B12 in normal nerve and blood development we cannot be obligate herbivores by degisn of nature.Any adult deciding to take the route of a Vegan diet, should do so carefully and should be very, very careful to make sure that any child raised on a Vegan diet gets the proper B12 supplement to prevent nerve malformation and anemia. (Thankfully, this is easy to do with yeast based supplements, and the requirements of B12 are not high dose.)A Vegan diet can be healthy, but one must be a little careful in its implementation for it to be so.Irony holds that the only thing allowing us to choose a Vegan lifestyle, is the omnivore propagated brain which allows us to find ways around our natural degisn.

    • Sujan December 18, 2012 at 12:33 pm #

      Big up Grouch! Just want to say I love the new Z&G album. I’ve been lookin faowrd to it for quite some time. It’s funny how you are on the healthy diet tip cuz I just recently decided to change my eating habits as well. That song definately made me think about my diet foreal. That’s why Im stoked ya are postin these recipes. Anyways, thanks for the recipe and all the good advice throughout the years. oh n ya know what’s on my wish list Z&G&E! See ya soon. One love

  3. You November 27, 2012 at 5:53 pm #

    Great points altogether, you just gained a new reader. What would you recommend in regards to your put up that you made a few days ago? Any sure?

    • Ron Pickarski November 27, 2012 at 8:05 pm #

      I am not sure what you meant by “your put up” but thinking you are referring to the Thanksgiving Day dinner and recipes.

      My focus with Vegetarianism is on it as a cuisine and I often wonder how the special diet, environmental and animal rights issues, as valid as they are, take away from the beauty of the cuisine. While I appreciate, respect and support all three issues, I wonder if the beauty of this ancient cuisine with immense 21st century relevance gets lost in those worthy causes.

      So my strategy is to develop the beauty of the cuisine, entice humanity to engage vegan vegetarianism as a celebratory, not spartan, cuisine. And by dining on the cuisine they are all subconsciously supporting all supporting those worthy causes and their health in a sustainable manner. This is the way to engage vegan vegetarianism as a lifestyle change.

      Ron Pickarski

    • Bethany December 18, 2012 at 3:19 pm #

      Wow, what a great website, and what wordunfel videos! You certainly are an inspiration! I also found your site through vegan.com, and will definitely subscribe. While I have been vegan for years, I am always looking for new and clever ideas to help friends and family think about what they are eating. While none are vegan (yet . . .) I definitely have them all eating healthier. Future ideas if you don’t grow any of your own veggies, please give it a try! Or inspire others to plant some. A container with one tomato plant is a great start. I am in South Florida, so I tend to have a garden year round. There are several months of the year I don’t have to buy any salad goodies, I just have to go pick them. Talk about saving money on your food bill. Anyway, thanks again for taking time to make a difference. Oh and I love your eco sneaks from a couple episodes back!

      • Ron Pickarski December 21, 2012 at 5:21 am #

        Dear Bethany, being a vegetarian is a great investment in one’s health. My spirit appreciates your support. You are wise in how you are approaching your friends. If you get them think about what they are eating that will lead to their acceptance of at least being a casual part time vegetarian. How you are approaching your friends is how my friends approached me back in 1975 which led me to become a vegetarian and eventually vegan. Your approach is spot on.

        Take care and happy holidays.

  4. Betti December 16, 2012 at 1:12 pm #

    There’s a sceret about your post. ICTYBTIHTKY

  5. Ron Pickarski December 17, 2012 at 9:23 pm #


    I agree with your position on carnivorism. It was an integral part of human evolution. Meat became not only the source of B12 but also a primary source of carbohydrate where grains were in short supply. Where I think the western world went astray was over emphasizing carnivorism to the detriment of a vegetarian diet.

    Diet comes from the Greek word “Diaita” meaning a way of life. Vegetarianism is both a cuisine and a diet. The cuisine side of diet seems to have taken a back seat to the activist side trumping the dietary related moral issues. There is a great deal of dogma surrounding vegetarianism from both the vegetarians and meat industry. While there is truth in both sides, as related to your blog, it is cuisine and human nutrition that will be the ultimate drivers of vegetarianism in the 21st century, not dogmatic positions. Truth isn’t dogmatic. It is buried in both positions as reflected in the evolution of the human body and its diet as omnivores. What is omnivorism but a combination of a vegetarian and carnivores diet. The problem is that there is too much emphasis on the carnivore side. Twenty years ago the ADA believed that a vegetarian diet wasn’t healthy and they eventually changed their position. It is the vegetarian side of a balanced omnivores diet.

    After making a kill, carnivores go for the intestines and vital organs where the primary nutrition lies. The predigested grains loaded with dietary fiber lie in the intestines. Monkey’s after making a kill, will seek out and ingest specific herbs and vegetables to help digest the meat they consumed. Even carnivores need their fiber and instinctively consume it their first course.

    Taste, cost and nutrition are the drivers of vegetarianism which are primarily related to the food. Great cuisine is a marketable vegetarian position. If the consumer likes the cuisine they will indulge and incorporate it into a lifestyle change which has longevity and lasting health benefits. Inspiring consumers to dine on vegetarian cuisine through its development will cause them to embrace it as a dietary lifestyle change.

    The flip side of the irony is that meat consumption, which helped evolve as human beings, is now that which is causing the deterioration of human health and killing us through over consumption in western society. As omnivores we need to lower meat consumption and significantly increase vegetarian cuisine to establish homeostasis in our diets.

  6. Moon December 18, 2012 at 8:16 am #

    Boy that relaly helps me the heck out.

  7. brazilian virgin hair extension December 19, 2012 at 1:18 pm #

    Nice post. I understand something much more difficult on distinct blogs everyday. It’ll always be stimulating to read content from other writers and practice somewhat something from their store. I’d prefer to make use of some with the content on my weblog whether or not you do not mind. Natually I’ll provide you with a link on your web blog. Thanks for sharing.

  8. Estrella Lumbreras January 11, 2013 at 2:24 am #

    I was excited to discover this site. I wanted to thank you for your time due to this wonderful read!! I definitely loved every bit of it and i also have you book-marked to check out new things on your web site.

  9. Ron Pickarski January 12, 2013 at 8:32 am #

    I returned Thursday evening from a trip to Philadelphia where I worked with an international food service contractor on vegetarian menus. It was a formidable challenge to bring the menu items I developed to an impeccable standard. The challenge is in bringing vegan cuisine to the standard of meat. Vegetarian Cuisine is compared to meat cuisine’s for acceptability in that meat is the standard. That is a healthy challenge and I believe that vegan cuisine can rise to that standard. It did is several of the entrees I created (Chicken Style BBQ and Chicken Style Tikki Marsala to name a few).

    Eventually vegan cuisine will stand on it’s own merits and not have to take on the names of meat dishes and set a standard of acceptability independent of meat. One of the dishes created was a Moussaka which is related to lamb. The corporate chef came up with the name Greek Eggplant Lasagna. That was rising to the occasion in that neither the recipe nor name relate to Moussaka.

  10. Reviews on Fat Loss Fact January 25, 2013 at 7:15 pm #

    Thanks a lot for sharing this with all of us you actually recognize what you are talking about! Bookmarked. Kindly also visit my web site =). We can have a link trade arrangement between us

  11. Help to lose weight January 26, 2013 at 2:53 am #

    Thank you for the auspicious writeup. It in truth used to be a entertainment account it. Glance complex to more brought agreeable from you! By the way, how could we communicate?

  12. Christie September 20, 2015 at 7:50 am #

    May I simply say what a relief to discover someone who truly understands what they are talking about online.

    You definitely realize how to bring an issue to light and
    make it important. More and more people need to read this and understand this side of your story.
    It’s surprising you are not more popular because you most certainly possess
    the gift.

  13. craigslist search engines September 23, 2015 at 2:54 am #

    These posts contain requests by others users who wish to provide
    their cities to Craigslist.

  14. 21 day fix reviews September 24, 2015 at 12:20 am #

    Fastidious respond in return of this matter with real arguments and describing everything regarding that.

  15. farmville 2 cheats September 24, 2015 at 7:21 am #

    There is no registration fees in order to start the game load
    time, most farmville 2 cheats hen house mid range radios and up.
    The map is fairly simple, you will win something if you farmville 2 cheats hen house do?

  16. digital markedsførings ekspert i danmark September 24, 2015 at 7:18 pm #

    You offer an important information. I’ll
    be your regular website visitor.

  17. I think this is one of the most essential info for me. And I am pleased reading your article.

    Nevertheless want to remark on some general things, The
    website style is fantastic, the articles are really great : D.
    Excellent job, all the best.

  18. Tammy September 26, 2015 at 7:03 pm #

    Hey there! I’m at work browsing your blog from my new apple iphone!
    Just wanted to say I love reading through your blog and look
    forward to all your posts! Carry on the outstanding work!

  19. modules.apache.org September 26, 2015 at 7:11 pm #

    Waste disposal testimonials claim the instruction manual was well-written and accurate so it’s very standard also for first time doers.

  20. mortgage September 26, 2015 at 8:01 pm #

    The main distinction between conventional mortgage and other financings like VA
    or FHA are the insurers behind the loans.

  21. earthing mat benefits September 26, 2015 at 8:21 pm #

    Nice post. Didn’t know this, thanks for letting
    me know.

  22. old.poltuba.com September 26, 2015 at 9:09 pm #

    When you work on a plumbing system job, knowing all your various tools and how they are used
    will certainly be an excellent counsel.

  23. best seo NYC September 26, 2015 at 9:55 pm #

    At Earn SEO, we supply material advertising services to build brand name awareness among your target audience and drive website traffic
    to your web site.

  24. sv-webstudio.ru September 26, 2015 at 10:49 pm #

    Both choices are basic to utilize as well as actually
    heavy gates are currently leveraged so anyone can open them with minimal effort.

  25. Lenore September 27, 2015 at 2:26 am #

    Thanks for interviewing me and for putting in the time
    to do all the leg deal with this one.

  26. Heriberto September 27, 2015 at 2:27 am #

    Oops. Mistakes like these will kill your regional SEO.

  27. see this page September 27, 2015 at 3:51 am #

    Hi, its fastidious article concerning media print, we all know media is a fantastic source of facts.

  28. clash of clans hack September 27, 2015 at 4:15 am #

    I don’t even know the way I finished up right
    here, however I thought this submit was great. I don’t realize
    who you are but definitely you’re going to a famous blogger in the
    event you aren’t already. Cheers!

  29. http://www.lugdu1993.com/ September 27, 2015 at 5:50 am #

    I’m only commenting to let you know of the amazing experience our girl experienced reading
    the blog. She noticed many pieces, which included how it is like to possess an amazing giving nature to get certain people really
    easily learn certain complex things. You undoubtedly exceeded
    visitors’ desires. I appreciate you for rendering the important, healthy,
    informative in addition to easy tips about the topic.

  30. Geraldo September 27, 2015 at 8:26 am #

    Way to sum it all up and fantastic tips also!

  31. Adan September 27, 2015 at 10:14 am #

    Include yourself to the SEMpdx e-mail list, and we’ll keep you notified about upcoming
    occasions and other local news too.

  32. I think this is one of the most important info for me.

    And i’m pleased reading your article. Yet want to remark on some basic things, the web site style is perfect, the articles are really great.
    Excellent job, many thanks.

  33. Octavio September 27, 2015 at 3:40 pm #

    Or sub-directory, which looks like this:/ locator/santamonica.

  34. mercola earthing mat September 28, 2015 at 12:59 am #

    I recently noticed your website. You’ve got a lots of information at this site
    that’s why i like it!

  35. vacuouscyberspa10.sosblogs.com September 28, 2015 at 5:05 am #

    Hello my friend! I wish to say that this post is awesome, nice written and include almost all significant infos.

    I’d like to look more posts like this .

  36. Lilly September 28, 2015 at 1:14 pm #

    Hey there! I know this is kinda off topic but I was wondering if you knew where
    I could get a captcha plugin for my comment form?
    I’m using the same blog platform as yours and I’m having trouble finding
    one? Thanks a lot!

  37. games to play at home September 28, 2015 at 4:41 pm #

    Everything is very open with a clear description off the issues.
    It was defihitely informative. Your site is useful. Thank you for sharing!

  38. www.rebelmouse.com September 29, 2015 at 1:25 am #

    Ideal work you have done, this website is really cool as it
    is filled with excellent information.

  39. Divorce tv show September 29, 2015 at 5:02 am #

    It’s genuinely very complicated in this busy life to listen news on TV, thus I just use world wide
    web for that reason, and take the most recent information.

  40. Raul September 29, 2015 at 5:47 am #

    Why viewers still make use of to read news papers
    when in this technological world everything is available on web?

  41. Magnolia September 29, 2015 at 6:06 am #

    Outstanding post however I was wanting to know if you could write a litte more on this topic?

    I’d be very thankful if you could elaborate a little bit more.

    Many thanks!

  42. Daisy September 29, 2015 at 6:33 am #

    Its such as you learn my mind! You appear to grasp so
    much about this, like you wrote the ebook in it or something.

    I believe that you just could do with a few p.c.
    to pressure the message house a bit, but instead of that, that is magnificent blog.
    A fantastic read. I’ll definitely be back.

  43. Wendy September 29, 2015 at 11:40 am #

    Hi there, I found your site by way of Google while looking for a similar subject, your site came up,
    it appears good. I have bookmarked it in my google bookmarks.

    Hello there, just become aware of your weblog thru Google, and located that it is truly informative.
    I am going to watch out for brussels. I’ll appreciate when you proceed this in future.

    A lot of other people will probably be benefited from
    your writing. Cheers!

  44. Rhonda September 29, 2015 at 11:40 am #

    Very nice article, exactly what I was looking for.

  45. #breslanlawattorney September 29, 2015 at 1:13 pm #

    you are actually a excellent webmaster. The website loading velocity is incredible.
    It sort of feels that you are doing any unique trick. Also, The contents are masterpiece.

    you’ve performed a fantastic job on this matter!

  46. child lawyers in 60451 September 29, 2015 at 3:56 pm #

    Hey! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any issues with hackers?

    My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up losing
    several weeks of hard work due to no data backup.
    Do you have any solutions to prevent hackers?

  47. Victoria Breslan Law Offices September 29, 2015 at 6:10 pm #

    I’m not sure where you are getting your info, but good
    topic. I needs to spend a while finding out much more or figuring out more.
    Thank you for magnificent information I was on the lookout
    for this info for my mission.

  48. breslan law divorce Attorneys September 29, 2015 at 11:59 pm #

    Hello my family member! I wish to say that this post is amazing,
    nice written and include approximately all important infos.
    I would like to see more posts like this .

  49. Saul September 30, 2015 at 12:58 am #

    excellent issues altogether, you just gained a brand new reader.
    What may you suggest in regards to your publish
    that you simply made a few days in the past? Any sure?

  50. child Custody attorneys September 30, 2015 at 1:45 am #

    Hmm it looks like your blog ate my first comment (it was extremely long) so I guess
    I’ll just sum it up what I had written and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog.
    I as well am an aspiring blog writer but I’m still new to the whole thing.

    Do you have any suggestions for beginner blog writers?
    I’d really appreciate it.

  51. Will September 30, 2015 at 3:07 am #

    This article offers clear idea for the new
    visitors of blogging, that actually how to do blogging
    and site-building.

  52. Background Check September 30, 2015 at 2:46 pm #

    The references provided below provide more details about the legal case, the impact of the scandal
    on Martha Stewart’s company and the controversy that her activities raised.
    ‘Criminal Minds’ writers always fit in a scene where
    baby-girl Garcia drools over Agent Morgan (Shemar Moore).

    Morgan and Rossi fire and Kessler does as well, hitting Morgan before
    he goes down, dropping a tin of maggots.

  53. Penelope September 30, 2015 at 10:50 pm #

    It currently had software to send your site to various search engines
    as well as directories.

  54. lifelock review October 1, 2015 at 6:55 am #

    you are in point of fact a just right webmaster.
    The site loading pace is amazing. It sort of feels that you are doing any unique trick.
    In addition, The contents are masterpiece.

    you’ve performed a excellent activity on this matter!

  55. https://www.facebook.com October 1, 2015 at 10:07 am #

    In the majority of cases a great Search Engine Optimization expert will additionally deal with all the elements of electronic advertising and

  56. gmail sign in October 1, 2015 at 12:23 pm #

    If you need to be able to get into your Gmail account without going directly
    via a internet browser, then it is possible.
    The email service is offered via Web browser or a contact client program.

  57. t shirt printing encinitas October 1, 2015 at 3:40 pm #

    In a less than ideal embroidery digitizing situation, go for low-contrast color palettes and
    light fills for best results. Regarding shoddy customized shirts, weaving is presumably the
    most costly choice and is ideal for printing a logo or seal onto
    a shirt, however not useful for the bigger plans. Then, from local
    specialty shops or online, purchase a hilarious iron-on transfer which comes with basic directions for executing the project at home.

  58. Hi! This is my first visit to your blog! We are a team of
    volunteers and starting a new initiative in a community in the same
    niche. Your blog provided us beneficial information to work on. You have done
    a outstanding job!

  59. They can also provide you the total security systems installation for your
    residential or commercial purposes. 1940 Tigertail Blvd, Unit 2 Fort Lauderdale, FL 33004.
    Only the pins and tumblers of the locks are replaced, thereby invalidating existing keys.

  60. מנעולן הוד השרון October 1, 2015 at 4:20 pm #

    I am no longer sure where you’re getting your information, but good topic.

    I needs to spend a while studying more or figuring out more.
    Thank you for wonderful info I used to be on the lookout for this information for my mission.

  61. תיקון מזגנים בתל אביב October 1, 2015 at 4:21 pm #

    Hi, i believe that i saw you visited my site so i got
    here to return the favor?.I am attempting to find issues to enhance
    my website!I guess its good enough to use some of your ideas!!

  62. קידום אתרים לפי הצלחה October 1, 2015 at 4:22 pm #

    If you want to increase your knowledge simply keep visiting this web site and
    be updated with the most recent news update posted here.

  63. הסרת תוצאות חיפוש מגוגל October 1, 2015 at 4:30 pm #

    When I initially commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox and now
    each time a comment is added I get four emails with the same
    comment. Is there any way you can remove me from that service?
    Bless you!