October Is Vegetarian Awareness Month

27 September, 2007 (16:17)

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RECIPES: Vegan Lentil Burgers

By Rae Udy

On October 1, 1977 the North American Vegetarian Society established the first World Vegetarian Day to promote the joy, compassion and life-enhancing possibilities of vegetarianism.
Thirty years later the one day event is still celebrated but expanded to include all of October and called Vegetarian Awareness Month.
Most people know vegetarians don’t eat meat, chicken or fish but there are many other foods even vegetarians are unaware of that contain animal products or by-products.
One example is the red dye, carmine. This dye is made from crushed female beetles and larvae of the cochineal beetle. Often listed as natural coloring, this dye is used to add pink or red color to juice, candy, ice cream, fruit bars, yogurt and cherries.
Coca-Cola recently informed consumers that several products are not suitable for vegetarians. Fanta Orange, Lilt Pineapple & Grapefruit, Minute Maid Orange and Passion Fruit with Calcium and others are listed because they contain traces of fish gelatin. Go the question 13 at www.coca-cola.co.uk/faq/ for a full list of beverages.
The future does look good for vegetarians. School lunch programs in Florida, Alabama, Oregon and California have been very successful with students and faculty.
A high school in Altanta, Georgia began serving a separate vegetarian lunch line for 30 vegetarian students in 2004. Veggie pizza, soy sloppy Joe’s and vegetarian tacos have made the lunch line so popular that one-quarter of the 1200 student body eat there daily.
It’s easier than ever to eat vegetarian meals. Dozens of different vegetarian burgers, sausage, bacon, ribs, steaks, chicken, turkey are available in the grocery freezer.
There are even more varieties of packaged main dish mixes at your local health food store. Just add water, wait a few minutes and you will be ready to cook the mixture into a healthful loaf, several burger patties or dozens of tiny “wheat” balls to add to spaghetti sauce or to serve as an appetizer with low-fat dip.
Vegan Lentil Burgers is an easy recipe to try for Vegetarian Awareness Month. Lentils are ideal for a busy cook, because these beans do not require a lengthy soaking time and cook quickly in about 20 minutes.

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Veggies from the garden
Organic veggies from my garden. Phote by Rae Udy, August 2007

Posted in Vegan and Vegetarian Sandwiches, Vegan Barbecue Recipes, Vegan Main Dish, Vegetarian Lunch Recipes, Vegetarian Main Dish


Comment from Heather
Date: October 29, 2007, 4:31 pm

I think you mean Grady, Georgia, near Atlanta, which has a vegetarian lunch line. Grady, Alabama has about 35 residents.

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