Tag Archives: vegan

Dear Airlines, I’m Hungry


Long-haul flights are painful. No matter how many baby wine bottles or Blood Marys you give me, they are still painful. The highlight of the flight is the meal sessions, because something is going on and we can do something while watching movies (when is in-flight Internet going to be a thing?).

What makes it even more painful, is the illogical ‘special meals’ system that you have going on.

I’m a vegetarian. Not anything too weird, I just don’t eat meat. I’m not too anal about the whole thing either, as long as there is not a dead animal in my meal and it’s decent, I’m happy. Now I understand that there are some anal folk out there, and that you have tried to trick us all into thinking that you cater for everyone by your very many types of vegetarian options and special meals, but it really doesn’t make too much sense.

I’ve always chosen the vegetarian lacto-ovo option, which is really just a normal vegetarian meal that includes eggs and dairy (it took me a while to figure out what it was in the beginning). I.e. Normal people food, without dead animals. Not vegan – vegan is all about not consuming any animal by-products, so eggs or dairy is definitely not an option in these kind of meals.  It’s really not difficult to understand.

So PLEASE tell me why I always get a vegan meal, labelled as vegetarian lacto-ovo? No cheese, no dairy, not anything much, really. Even when there is a perfectly suitable vegetarian option on the ‘normal people’s menu’, I’m not allowed to have it, because I ordered a ‘special meal’ (which does not actually match the ‘specialness’ that I ordered).

So while others are happily munching away on their pumpkin ravioli with Napolitana sauce, cheese and biscuits and nice full salad with dressing and cheesecake for dessert,  I am picking at a vegetable pasta and a dry salad, topped off with a bunch of grapes. Well, to be more accurate, because I got my ‘special meal’ early, I’m looking at the leftovers of my disappointing meal while drooling over the cheese on the tray next to me.

Yeah, don’t judge me on the number of Bloody Marys I’ve ordered, I’m hungry, dammit.

Kind regards,
The Hungry Vegetarian

Cows at work

I took a trip to Irene Dairy Farm this past weekend on the way back from a beautiful Spring Day spent with horses.

Walking through the deli shop, picking up a caffè mocha along the way to the lush green grass to sit under the trees, things looked promising.

Still rushing on endorphins from the day’s activities, I almost expected to find happy cows bouncing around in the grass, smelling daisies and playing tag.

I found no happy cows. I found sad cows. Cows that know nothing other than a cycle of eating/drinking while being chained to their tiny segment of barn, walking to be milked, getting milked. And then again.

Calves are separated from their mothers and lie in their dirty stalls, looking at the passing kids with a look that pierces your heart.

I’m sure that this quaint little farm is a lot better than other mainstream dairy farms, but I didn’t leave a with a warm and fuzzy feeling in my tummy.

The reality of the dairy industry is that it can never been warm and fluffy, given the demand  that we put on dairy products. Cows will not be jumping through daisies and laughing with each other.

Reality sucks.

Guilt-free food?

I’m not talking about calories here – I’m talking actual physical guilt. The guilt you feel when you cause another to be hurt, or take part in that suffering some way.

We are all guilty of blindly eating foods that we have no idea where they came from (no, not the grocery store’s shelf – there’s a whole lot that happens before it gets there) or that we don’t know exactly what’s in them. It’s a difficult act to take part in, because once you know, you cannot ‘unknow’. Most people would rather not know how that juicy steak came into being on their plate, because if they did, they’d likely not eat it. This would cause some serious lifestyle changes that, let me tell you, are not a walk in the park.

Having watched some of the Earthlings documentary recently, I’ve started to have to think more ethically and wondering how on earth I’m going to cope with this. The scenes in that movie show you your worst fears of how animals are treated in this world in the name of ignorant consumerism – they cannot be unseen. Traumatised after 30 minutes and jolted into the realisation that humans are indeed @ssholes.

Where do you stop? How do you live a normal life? How do you eat out socially with non-vegetarians? What started as pescatarian, moved on to vegetarian, is now leading into veganism. We’re not just talking food here, we’re talking clothes, pets, cosmetics, non-animal-friendly materials and unethical products in all areas of your day-to-day life. All these things contribute to the violent torture of animals and the raping of our environment and it’s not easy to find vegan-freindly alternatives.

Having some amazing vegetarian/vegan friends along the way helps a lot, but mingling with the rest of society seems to be a problem.

I just know that I’d rather consume life-giving food than life-taking foods. And I don’t want to be part of any industry that contributes to the unethical treatment of animals. Maybe it really is that simple.

Stick around for some more posts about this journey, I’m sure I’ll have lots to share along the way. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the matter too.

A Veggie’s dream – The Greenside Cafe, Greenside

The best part of being a vegetarian (well, almost…I haven’t been able to give up sushi, which either makes me a bad vegetarian or a good pescatarian), is the food. Oh my goodness, I can’t imagine a bland meat meal again after tasting creative vegetarian food!

With this in mind, @claremelina introduced me to the Greenside Cafe in Greenside, Jozi, and it definitely did not disappoint! This is an amazing vegetarian/vegan restaurant in the heart of Greenside, run by Dimitri Gutjahr, who is passionate about saving our planet. Check out their website and also be sure to have a look at their 101 Reasons to go Veg – quite an eye opener.

We ate there for lunch yesterday, which prompted me to blog about my own views on vegetarianism, starting with a focus on the yummiest vegetarian food I have ever eaten out. This is the first of a good few posts on vegetarian food and restaurants, I’m sure…

>The Cafe

The Greenside Cafe’s philosophy is all around integrity, love and mindfulness for human beings, other beings, and the planet. Their food is creative and delicious, and you can almost feel the kindness as you enter the restaurant. It’s almost always filled with yogi’s wolfing down piles of fresh, organic goodness.

I would highly recommend the pizza yogi – I have not yet been able to refuse it. Their salads are amazing and all their food is fresh, organic and so light on the environment.




This kind of food is so energising and so CLEAN.

I love, love, love good food ❤

If you know some other good vegetarian restaurants in Jozi, drop me a comment here and I’ll try it out.