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In this weekly series we have been discussing the benefits of a vegetarian diet including: better health, animal rights, food safety, public health, frugal living, global food crisis and the staggeringly huge contribution of livestock/meat to climate change/resource depletion.

Livestock’s environmental impact greater than that of fossil fuel. In 2010, the United Nations Environment Programme called for the adoption of plant-based eating with the report Assessing the Environmental Impacts of Consumption and Production, in which they identified the overall environmental, including climate change, effects of livestock, including global warming potential and land use change, as being greater than fossil fuels from coal, natural gas and crude oil.

Macca's Meatless Monday/Meatless Advocates is a solution oriented activist group, with solutions for some of the most pressing issues of our time including: climate change, global food/water insecurity and public health. Here we don't just talk about the severity of the crisis. Armed with knowledge about how our actions can contribute we become part of the solution.

I was inspired to create this series by former Beatle and vegetarian advocate Paul McCartney(Macca) who partnered with the Meatless Monday campaign to promote less consumption of meat.  We not only discuss the advantages of a less meat diet we also do some cooking, share recipes and listen to great Beatle music!

Please join us below the fold for more Macca's Meatless Monday!

As the climate crisis becomes more urgent it becomes necessary to accept some inconvenient truths. It becomes apparent that our lives will change either by proactive action to reduce greenhouse gases or by reaction to the effects that climate change will have on our environment. We have an opportunity to get ahead of the problem by deliberately making the changes necessary and becoming part of the solution. By far, the easiest and most effective action we as individuals can take is to reduce or eliminate meat and dairy products in our diet. The benefits for early action are enormous both to our health and the environment.

Today we're going to have some Happy Halloween Fun with some recipes that prove you can have a healthy, Earth friendly feast using traditional holiday ingredients.

Perfect for a chilly spooky night.

1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 cups solid-pack pumpkin, canned
2 cups low-salt vegetable broth
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
1 1/2 cups unsweetened coconut milk, divided
Salt and pepper
Pepitas, for garnish

    Heat the oil in a heavy large pot over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic. Sauté until golden, about 10 minutes.
    Add the pumpkin, broth, sugar, allspice, and crushed red pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat. Cover and simmer until flavors blend, about 30 minutes.
    Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender until smooth. Return the soup to the pot. Bring the soup to a simmer, thinning with coconut milk to the desired consistency. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
    Ladle the soup into bowls. Sprinkle with the pepita seeds, drizzle with a teaspoon of coconut milk, and serve.

This lovely salad can serve 4 as entree or 6 as side.

    4 medium beets, peeled and quartered
    4 medium golden potatoes (Yukon gold, Klondike rose), peeled and cubed
    3 cups cubed butternut squash, sweet potatoes or pumpkin
    3 tablespoons olive oil
    3/4 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
    1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
    3 cups baby spinach leaves
    4 tablespoons citronette or a splash of balsamic vinegar

Preheat an oven to 425. Line a large baking sheet with foil or parchment paper and set it aside. In large bowl, toss the beets, potatoes and squash with the olive oil.

Arrange the vegetables in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet and roast them, stirring occasionally, for 30 to 35 minutes. The vegetables are done when they are tender and turn golden brown and begin to caramelize.

Transfer the hot vegetables to a clean, large bowl and gently toss them with the salt, lemon zest, and black pepper. Add the spinach leaves to the salad, drizzle with the dressing, and gently toss until the vegetables are coated with the seasonings.

Divide the salad between 4 to 6 plates and serve immediately.

Even the kids with love this holiday take on mac & cheese.

    8 ounces linguine or use elbows etc.
    1 medium shallot
    3-4 garlic cloves
    2 sprigs fresh sage (10-12 leaves)
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    3/4 cup canned pumpkin puree
    3/4 cup vegetable broth
    1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
    2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
    Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook until al dente (7 to 8 minutes); drain. Meanwhile, mince the shallot, garlic, and sage. Heat olive oil in the pasta pot over medium heat. Add the shallot and garlic; stir for 3 minutes until softened. Add the pumpkin puree, vegetable broth, almond milk, nutritional yeast, and half of the sage. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until the sauce is slightly thickened and reduced. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the pasta to the sauce, and mix well. Sprinkle each serving with the remaining sage. Serves 4.

This is Laura's recipe which has become a mainstay in my house. Great for sport-watching Sunday meals. Just add some cookie cutter bats, pumpkin etc. cut from cheese slices (I use veggie cheese slices)

Vegetarian chili is probably my longest-standing, most reliable vegetarian meal. I got this recipe from a college housemate, and have tweaked it a bit myself. I've been known to combine it with oven fries and a slice of cheese to have chili cheese fries for my Meatless Monday.

3-4 tablespoons olive oil
2-6 cloves garlic, minced (obviously dependent on how much you like garlic; I use the high end)
1 large onion, chopped
1 large green bell pepper, diced
3 15 oz cans red beans or dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
28 oz can ground or crushed tomatoes
1/2 can tomato paste (I use whole small can)
2 bay leaves
4 tablespoons chili powder
1-2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt, more if your canned beans are low in sodium
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Remember to add about 1-2 cups water! when you add tomatoes

Saute the vegetables over low heat until they're soft and the onion is translucent. Dump in the other ingredients and simmer, covered, over very low heat for at least 3 hours, stirring occasionally. (I use a slow cooker and leave it cooking for up to 8 hours.) As it cooks, I check the seasonings and often add more tomato paste and salt.

Edited to add: This recipe is obviously pretty aggressively spiced, but it doesn't have much heat. If you want to add heat, pretty much pick your method—add some finely chopped hot pepper when you saute the onion and garlic, add some cayenne with the chili powder, pretty much whatever. Also, argh! This is what happens when you make a recipe less from a recipe than from habit: you'll want to add some water along with the tomatoes etc.  


1/2 cup vegan marshmellow or RiceMellow
3 tbsp vegetable margarine
2 cups rice crisp cereal
Combine and form pingpong ball sized spheres. Allow to harden.
Melt 2 cups white chocolate and dip the balls. Allow to harden on wax paper.
Take 1/2 cup melted white chocolate and mix with 1/2 tsp red vegetable dye - drizzle for the "bloodshot effect".
Place a chocolate candy on the top for the "pupil" and allow to dry.
Makes about 18 eyeballs.

"Gimme Some Truth"   John Lennon

"Scared"    Paul McCartney..from his "New" album

What have you all been cooking? Please share your recipes and fave Beatle music here!

Originally posted to Meatless Advocates Meetup on Mon Oct 28, 2013 at 03:00 PM PDT.

Also republished by Kitchen Table Kibitzing and Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I've been trying to include more vegetarian meals (9+ / 0-)

    in addition to meatless mondays these last few weeks.  Healthier AND better for the environment = WIN.  My favorite meatless meal has been asian stirfry with tofu / teriyaki sauce - either using trader joe's asian stirfry mix or making my own with baby corn, snow/sugar snap peas, mushrooms, onions or scallions, bok choy, etc.  I picked up some pre-cooked lentils at trader joe's this weekend, haven't decided what to do with them yet, but they may end up as part of dinner tonight.

    The Girl Who Loved Stories
    I’m a feminist because the message is still "don’t get raped" not "don’t rape"

    by Avilyn on Mon Oct 28, 2013 at 03:54:34 PM PDT

  •  Roasted vegetables (11+ / 0-)

    Tonight for us it's butternut squash pieces with shallots roasted.

    I saw a Whole Foods recipe last week that was a different riff on the pumpkin mac n cheeze similar to above using coconut milk, theirs includes nut pieces which I think is a good idea; I've been turning it over to try & find a way to make it work & I think yours has the missing ingredients of garlic, shallots & veg broth to make it a savory dish.

    Thank you VL for this week and every week you publish this diary with its treasure trove of info.

    I do not demand tolerance, I demand equal rights. --Anna Grodzka

    by VeggiElaine on Mon Oct 28, 2013 at 03:55:49 PM PDT

  •  today (8+ / 0-)

    Avial with rice, and some fried plantains.  My mother-in-law usually makes it with carrot, potato and drumstick as the vegetables.

  •  ... (9+ / 0-)

    "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. H.

    by indycam on Mon Oct 28, 2013 at 04:14:10 PM PDT

  •  love both eyeball recipes! (8+ / 0-)

    I finally made something different - Rip's Sweet Potato Bowl with sweet potatoes, black beans, cilantro, avocado..... it's pretty yummy. I think this is a good lunch for the next few weeks. Especially since 3 of the ingredients are on this list.  It isn't that big a deal, the dermatologist is sure she got it all, but since this is the 2nd time they've scraped something off my forehead, I have to use some chemotherapy cream for 2weeks. And the side effects don't sound fun. The good ones are irritation, redness & scaliness.

    So, healthy food. mixed with comfort food - if my skin is going to be burn-y & scaly, I'm going to need chocolate. It's as good an excuse as any, right?

    •  sorry to hear about your skin condition ((ad)) (6+ / 0-)

      Sounds like it's taken care of and I know that you will do the rest and make sure you get the care and comfort you need.  Rip's recipe sounds so good think I will try it. Read an article about him today about the educational work he's doing for hunger and the malnourished.  I'm going to write about him soon he's doing such great work.

      Take care of yourself....

      Macca's Meatless Monday

      by VL Baker on Mon Oct 28, 2013 at 06:12:01 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Someone gave me some squash blossoms, so I had (6+ / 0-)

    to search the Internet and decided on stuffing them, rolling in egg and breadcrumbs and baking. I used ricotta cheese but instead of putting in the parsley, I used my garam masala, and put the leftovers on some flaxseed bread I get at the Farmers Market. Yum

  •  Before you go all crazy over this meatless crap (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Taiji gal, Calamity Jean

    You need to stop the current planting and consumption of the GE Wheat.

    The wheat that is being planted now is not the same as it was 20-30 years ago.

    It is what is making everyone fat and sick.

    Until you get that wheat out of the food-chain going meatless is a fool's errand.  

  •  Ok! I have beets from my CSA box and some (4+ / 0-)

    organic potatoes.  I bet I can roast some carrots with that too.  Next, I need to Google citronette...

    Thanks, VLB!

    ...Son, those Elephants always look out for themselves. If you happen to get a crumb or two from their policies, it's a complete coincidence. -Malharden's Dad

    by slowbutsure on Mon Oct 28, 2013 at 06:26:52 PM PDT

  •  Thanks (4+ / 0-)

    for the spooky recipes!

  •  * oh HELL i hate posting OT. (0+ / 0-)

    but this could benefit from a kog's recipe for turning out a wise diary:

    Do you support prayer? Comment "YES" Below. Click "LIKE" & SHARE

    URGENT: Show your support - SIGN the Statement of Support today.

    OUR RELIGIOUS LIBERTIES ARE IN JEOPARDY: A crucial case is before the Supreme Court that could strengthen your religious freedom or discard a tradition that predates American’s founding. SUPPORT PRAYER! — with Pam Guntermann-Hack and Andriel Lucious Littlejohn.

    so, it may be on topic, after all -- if you count the "TEA" part. but look closely: "...predates America's founding."

    the pure are becoming more pure? that's my take, anyhow; just another wedge for the loosely-informed to keep separated from us with... SUPERIORITY.

    not to mention, they're not liberal eggheads, neether.
    synopsis of their 'Statement of Support'? anything ??
    who's the "sponsor" of the "sponsor" of it ????

    and what's a handy index-card broken-record factual response? ID of case / Title of Case / Issue of Case / url for legal discussion, etc., at ".gov"
    that's all i'm looking for. thanks.
    (bolded in alarmist text box is mine. received from tehadist i "know.")

    Addington's perpwalk? TRAILHEAD of accountability for Bush-2 Crimes. @Hugh: There is no Article II power which says the Executive can violate the Constitution.

    by greenbird on Mon Oct 28, 2013 at 06:29:00 PM PDT

  •  recipes (7+ / 0-)

    We have an abundance of buttercup squash and I think I will try the pumpkin recipes using the squash. The list of foods to fight skin cancer mimics many lists of excellent and colorful foods to promote healthy bones as well as being beneficial for good health. We both have had skin cancer and it is frightening, but huge advances have been made to deal with it. Keep on fighting!

  •  Yummy as usual. I like the soup and make something (5+ / 0-)

    similar with pumpkin in season and sweet potato out of season. It's made with roasted pumpkin, stock, onion, celery, garlic, bay leaf, thyme, pepper sauce to taste, rice or white vinegar for some bite and peanut butter. Blend when done. It is good and really better the day after you make it.
    Tonight is navy beans, the last of our scallions that are giants!, and cornmeal biscuits. Simple and delicious. I made a bunch of beans to eat a couple of meals and freeze the rest in 1 1/2 C packages (with some of the bean juice) for making dips or adding to stews or soups or whatever you might need beans for.
    Getting ready for maybe some trick or treaters, this neighborhood is not one for that. :-(

    Please call me Scotia. "Have nothing in your home that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful" - William Morris

    by TX Scotia on Mon Oct 28, 2013 at 06:37:17 PM PDT

  •  Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous!!! (5+ / 0-)

    Beautiful food.  This past weekend I realized I have no frigging clue how to work with artichokes -- so, no problem, the dish wasn't destroyed (although it was a cod dish).  The appetizer, however, was brilliant and a recipe from Chef Terrance Brennan at Picholine in NYC -- a once in a lifetime experience for me.

    Wild Mushroom Risotto (modified by me)


    2 tablespoons olive oil
    ½ cup wild mushrooms (Chanterelles,
    Oyster, Porcini), trimmed and wiped clean
    with a damp cloth, thinly sliced
    6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold
    Kosher salt
    Black pepper in a mill
    ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons diced onion
    ½ teaspoon minced garlic
    2 cups Carnaroli or other risotto rice such as
    Arborio or Vialone Nano
    1/2 cup dry white wine
    4 cups chicken stock, simmering
    1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated
    1 tsp. White Truffle Oil (only if real pressed -- not synthetic)  omit if you can't get the real thing and it won't hurt the dish.


    1. HEAT the oil in an 8-inch sauté pan set
    over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and
    cook until they begin to release their juice,
    approximately 4 minutes. Add 1 tablespoon
    of butter and sauté for 2 more minutes.
    Season with salt and 3 grind s of pepper.
    Remove the pan from the heat and set aside.

    2. MELT 2 table spoons of the butter in a 4-
    quart saucepan set over medium low heat.
    Add the onions and a pinch of salt and cook
    until softened but not browned,
    approximately 4 minutes. Add the garlic
    and sauté for 1 minute. Add the risotto rice
    and stir to coat the rice with the butter,
    approximately 1 minute. Add the wine and
    continue to stir. Once the wine has been
    absorbed by the rice, add 1 cup of the
    chicken stock., stirring constantly. After you
    have added about half the stock, vigorously
    stir and agitate the rice for 30 seconds to
    release it’s starch content. When finished,
    the rice should be very thick and creamy
    and when stirred, should hold it’s shape for
    a moment before falling slightly. Fold the
    mushrooms, fava beans, and duck into the

    3. REMOVE the pot from the heat and stir in
    the remaining 3 tablespoons butter, the
    Parmigiano-Reggiano, ¾ teaspoon salt, 6
    grinds of pepper, and the truffle oil. Mix
    well, divide among individual plates or
    shallow bowls and serve.

    The reason for the vigorous stirring 1/2 way through is that it breaks down the starch for a creamy texture.  Trust me -- it works and the rice should be al dente.

    In the veggie part, I made a a soffrito (also known as mirepoix in French cuisine) of the holy trinity of chopped carrot, celery and onion -- then I add garlic) sauteed in olive oil.

    " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Mon Oct 28, 2013 at 06:38:43 PM PDT

  •  I love all of these recipes (4+ / 0-)

    In addition to being vegan, I have wheat, gluten and dairy allergies and also must use strict food-combining principles and stay away from heated oils.  I modify recipes so that there is no sauteing, and oil is added after cooking.  I learned a lot from the book "Sick and Tired?: Reclaim Your Inner Terrain" by  Robert O. Young, and also his book about pH of foods.

    I am reading this over and it sounds like a real turn-off, but really simplifies food preparation for me, and I can still make anything but fried foods in oils.

    by Portia Elm on Mon Oct 28, 2013 at 06:55:59 PM PDT

  •  I miss the reality based community (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Calamity Jean

    That we used to have here at DailyKos.

    The United Nations has admitted over and over that transportation, not meat production, is the primary cause of greenhouse gasses. Yet you continue to misrepresent the facts.

    So now it's OK to be dishonest here on DailyKos if it's about some people's pet rock?

    In the USA beef is raised on land that is unsuitable for farming. It's too hot, too cold, too dry, too wet or whatever...but cattle are adaptable and able to graze and produce nutritional calories for those of us who choose to eat them. Don't want grain fed beef? There are dozens of people raising grass fed, organic or whatever kind of beef you desire.

    Hunger around the world is not caused by feeding grain to livestock. There's plenty of food to feed everyone in the world. Poverty, politics, transportation, lack of infastructure are why people starve. It's simply dishonest to suggest othewise.

    Veganism is an incomplete, unnatural diet. High profile vegans are admitting it. Vegan registered dietitian Jack Norris ( has a long list of supplements vegans need to take to maintain their vegan diet..

    The CBS News poll a few years ago showed 3 out of 4 vegetarians eventually add some meat back into their diet...mostly because they get sick without it.

    Please, Kos, bring honesty and real facts back to this site. If people don't want to eat meat, that's their choice, but don't pretend meat production is destroying the planet. It's not true and damages this site's credibility.

    •  ... and that's why it's Meatless Monday... (8+ / 0-)

      the point is LESS meat consumption.

      ... and much of that transportation is about getting mass produced meat and out of season produce shipped around the country (and the world)... so it's all rather connected.

      If this isn't your thing-- great-- write about your passion and work to fix the thing that matters to you.

      Our country can survive war, disease, and poverty... what it cannot do without is justice.

      by mommyof3 on Mon Oct 28, 2013 at 07:52:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  reality based community (5+ / 0-)

      You are more than welcome to instead visit the many other informative & interesting threads available here.  I, for one, avoid the RKBA threads & I also avoid the religious ones because I don't need to be preached to.  Thanks for playing.

      I do not demand tolerance, I demand equal rights. --Anna Grodzka

      by VeggiElaine on Mon Oct 28, 2013 at 07:52:19 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Where do you get the idea (6+ / 0-)

      that veganism is being promoted?   Excessive meat consumption is a factor in climate change and, unless you are a climate denier, you are looking at ways to minimize your footprint.  One easy way to tread more lightly is to cut down on meat.  Who said you need to be a vegan?  

      Looking at your history here, I see that you are posting on behalf of the meat industry so of course you don't agree with anyone who dares suggest that industrial meat production isn't beneficial to the planet.

      It's the Supreme Court, stupid!

      by Radiowalla on Mon Oct 28, 2013 at 08:10:00 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I have but one humble request... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      julesrules39, VL Baker, Portia Elm

      If you advocate for people to use meat in their diet, for whatever reason, then also advocate that they do not buy meats which utilize antibiotics in the raising of the animals.

    •  Tiredinok, your information is misleading as (4+ / 0-)

      presented.  In the US, where most meat sold is produced via industrialized agriculture, there is no question that it constributes significantly to climate change.  The article in the Telegraph that you reference is discussing one report that an author claims that an apples to apples comparison was not possible because you have to consider all inputs for both items being compared, livestock and transportation.  The report looked at the entire list of processed needed to produce meat and dairy using GMO soy, corn, etc. in feed.

      Sustainably raised meat has a much lower carbon footprint than industrial meat, given that it doesn't require additional tracks of land for crop cultivation, herbacides, pesticides, chemical fertilizers, use of tractors and other heavy equipment for applications of such and water, antibiotics, etc.  80% of antibiotics sold in the US are for livestock production.

      Other harmful factors associated with industrialized agriculture include soil erosion, pollution (air and water), species harmed by chemical applications and runoff into water sources, more resistant strains of bacteria and weeds.

      I agree with the person who said that you appear to be advocating on behalf of the beef industry given your diaries and comments.  If that is true, then you are not being forthright and honest.  

      In any case, we need to try to reduce our carbon footprint in any way possible, including eating less meat and dairy, and when possible, to buy sustainably produced products.

    •  I call myself a "vegan" because it is (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      VL Baker

      a defined way of eating.  You can tell my body that it would be better off with a conventional American diet, and it will quickly tell you that you are asking it to get sick and die.  A dirty little secret is that if I eat sugar or foods with sugar in them, I crave meat, because sugar metabolism sucks up a lot of nutrients, and my body knows that meat, especially beef, can replace them quickly.  If I eat live foods as fresh as possible, and in variety, with a lot of greens, beans, legumes, etc., I am fine, as long as I don't eat junky dead food.  High profile "vegans," like Angelina Jolie, IMHO, have an eating disorder, because "vegan" eating does not result in being bone-thin and undernourished.  People who eat meat take many supplements also, including "anti-oxidants" and things that chase "free radicals" which are recommended to counteract the harmful effects of a dead meaty diet.  I listen to my body, not some hucksters selling I-dont-know-what.  My body is my vehicle, and it knows what it needs.

      by Portia Elm on Tue Oct 29, 2013 at 06:55:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  your reality is not universal, so stop (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      VL Baker, Radiowalla

      trying to impose it universally.  As a veteran of the "pootie diaries" I know that they do not allow "shit-stirring" and if you don't want to come here and share delicious vegetarian recipes and experiences with meatless eating, then no one is forcing you to stay.  The idea that DK has an enforced "reality" is a new one on me, and diversity is, to my mind, what makes DK so enduring and alive.  If you want to offer other reasons this planet is being f%$#ed, then go ahead, just don't try to crap on what people come here for.

      by Portia Elm on Tue Oct 29, 2013 at 08:53:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  VL, thanks for the diary. I make chili often. (4+ / 0-)

    I like to add color and texture by adding black beans, black eyed peas and corn to mine along with chili beans.  Also, I don't like bell peppers;  so, I use a lot of diced poblanos instead and add minced jalapenos to mine.  If you don't like a lot of heat, remove the seeds from the jalapenos.  

    P.S.  You might want to wear gloves if you are not used to working with jalapenos.  Otherwise, be sure not to rub your eyes for several hours until you know that no burning oil traces are left on your hands.

    If you want a milder heat dried pepper with a great taste, there's a great one used often in Turkey called "Aleppo" pepper.  This is also wonderful used on vegetables roasted with olive oil and garlic salt.

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