I live in Brooklyn and love vegan food.
But I’m not a vegan.
In 2010, while living in San Francisco, I decided to try eating a lot more plant-based food and essentially became a vegan for six months. I figured it would be better for me, better for the planet, and that it would be a vote against the worst factory farming practices.
I quickly discovered that the best vegan food was often the food I made for myself. It’s not that I’m such an amazing cook – it’s that our food culture in the U.S. and many other places really depends quite heavily on animal products. They are often the focal point of a meal. Take the meat out of your steak frites, and all you’ve got are frites. That’s not much of a meal, even if it would be a tasty way to fill up. Having a preference for eating vegan food, I learned, creates a huge incentive to cook at home.
Why bother with vegan food if you eat meat, eggs, and dairy?!
Even though the majority of what I eat qualifies as vegan food and I prefer to eat this way, I eat animal products if I feel like it. I still wear my leather shoes. I won’t starve if there’s no vegan option and I’m away from home. Sometimes I don’t ask if something contains animal products.
For me, it’s not about deprivation, it’s about shifting my default food choices towards something that makes me feel better in so many ways. I think eaters’ everyday choices can change the world.
About this blog
I’m not a chef. I’m not a nutritionist. I’m not a doctor. I take pictures, but I’m not a photographer, either. I don’t have any formal qualifications to tell you what to eat or why.
But that’s the point – I am just a normal person. I eat great food that I make, and this food gives back to me by making me feel fantastic.
You don’t need to be a foodie or a chef or a vegan to make delicious healthy plant-based food. But we all could use a little advice, and so I want to offer what I’ve learned.
As many successes as I’ve had, there have been oh so many failures. A lot of the vegan resources out there, although well-intentioned, have not produced results that I find satisfactory. It is my hope that you can rely on this website for recipes and advice that have been tested by a normal person in a normal kitchen.
Why dragon fruit?
The surprise, complexity, and delight of my first dragon fruit represents the thrill of hunting for new delicious foods and the amazing diversity of plants.
I was walking through Manhattan’s Chinatown in August 2010 with a dear friend of mine. Something I’d never seen before stopped me dead in my tracks. This fruit was CRAZY LOOKING! Fuschia with these bright green tips covered in what looked like dragon armor. I’d never had one. My friend had never had one.
I had to buy one.
As amazing as the outside looked, nothing could have prepared us for the inside. If you’ve never seen a dragon fruit, you’ve just got to. If you can find one, buy one and cut it up. Peel back the layers. Look closely.
What a startling, beautiful thing it is.