The third instalment of the Veganuary Round Up series and our very own Emily gives us the ever-awaited update, 3 weeks into her Veganuary experience!
How I’m feeling after this week
I’m three weeks into a plant-based diet now and I’m going to be honest: I’m struggling. This week I was back into the swing of university life: back to back lectures, working in the library, trying to maintain a social life, all whilst trying to maintain my Veganuary pledge. I’m very proud of myself for not slipping up throughout the process so far, but I can completely sympathise with those who have.
The most important thing to remember is that by taking part in Veganuary, you are making a conscious effort to better your dietary choices to best help the environment, and animals who are mistreated to produce most of our meals. Even if you don’t follow veganism to a T 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, you’re still trying, and still making such an impact.
This is the mentality I plan to leave my Veganuary journey with. Whilst I may still enjoy a beef burger or some fish and chips on occasion, swapping my mince for vegan Quorn spaghetti bolognese, or choosing oat milk in my morning coffee is still going to make an impact to our society’s consumption of animal products.
This week I ate out at Pizza Hut as I heard they had introduced a vegan menu for Veganuary. I had the ‘vegan veggie’ pizza and it was very tasty. There was a couple on the table next to me who were sharing a large mozzarella pizza with a stuffed crust, and I can’t lie and say I wasn’t a little jealous. In the spirit of this week’s round up being all about honesty, I’m going to admit that I’m tired of vegan cheese.
Whilst my pizza was tasty and I enjoyed it, without the vegetables I would’ve really struggled to eat it all, as the texture of the VioLife cheese is so different to regular cheese. I imagine it’s something I could get used to, but as a massive pizza lover, I’m tired of it. Later on in the week some friends were organising a takeaway night. I jumped in on the Dominos 241 deal that all students know and love. My order: extra tomato sauce, sweetcorn, red onion and mushroom. When the pizzas arrived, mine had been generously coated in a layer of mozzarella cheese. I was a little frustrated, as I don’t like to complain, so I timidly admitted ‘I could just eat it? It’s not MY fault!’. Luckily I was surrounded by friends who reminded me why I’m cutting out dairy from my diet. Not just for Veganuary, but for my own health too – and it wasn’t worth it.
I’m so glad I was interrupted, as if I was alone in that room I am 100% confident I would’ve given in to the pizza. I called up the pizza shop and explained the mistake. They very kindly sent a new, large pizza over for free (with no cheese!) Whilst I was very grateful, I had to sit whilst everyone else ate their pizza for 45 minutes before mine arrived. By then, everyone else had finished, and made me feel even more excluded as I had an inconvenient dietary requirement.
This week’s recipe
This week I have been very grateful for my breakfast. Without accessible, on campus vegan meals to eat during the day, having a big breakfast gives me the confidence that I will stay full throughout the day, and doesn’t put pressure on me to find a meal when I inevitably get hungry, grumpy, and tired 3 hours into my uni day.
- Porridge oats
- Oat milk
- Toasted buckwheat muesli
- Square of dark chocolate
- Sliced banana
Place twice the amount of oat milk to porridge oats in a sauce pan. Cook on a medium heat until the mixture is combined and thick.
Serve in a bowl, with your choice of toppings. I’ve been enjoying a sprinkle of toasted muesli, a sliced banana, and a broken up square of dark chocolate.