Happy Herbivore Blog

Happy Herbivore in Europe: Milan

Posted by: Lindsay S. Nixon |

Category: Travel

I have had pizza and salad in every Italian city I've visited. Cliche? perhaps... but I cannot get enough of the fresh vegetables!

Like Venice Milan gets a Veg stamp of approval too with lots of veg and vegan-friendly options on every menu.

Even a locals-only bar we stopped at offered a complementary platter (with drink order) that was vegetarian -- we sent the cheese back, but nomed on the olives, pickles, pearl onions and tomatoes!

I tried a local drink---it was pretty, very orange, but the jury is still out on that one. At least the park we hung out in was cool!

We also happened to land in Milan during Fashion Week. This was totally unplanned and although I'm not a total fashionista I enjoyed some of the festivities. Like standing all model-like on a green screen! huzzah! strike a pose, HH.

Interesting, there was a huge anti-fur, anti-leather, animal rights rally going on nearby and as soon as one of the activists walked up to give Scott & I propaganda I blurted out "we're vegan!" and the cute Italian boy smiled and said "wow!" It was a cool moment. I'm sure I made his day---it's not easy to be out there educating about the horrors of fashion and meat industries...

Oh, and I made a new friend.

and showed some cute Italian boys how to do a full wheel in the park:

Celebrate: Beer Day!

Posted by: Andrea Dermos |

Category: Holiday

Today is Drink a Beer Day! We have a delicious and super simple recipe for beer bread, but we also wanted our gluten free friends to be able to enjoy as well. Lidia, from Air Eater, shared her gluten free beer bread adaptation with us :) 

My home is vegan by choice and and gluten/soy free due to my husband's sensitivities, so the decision to make HH's Beer Bread recipe sounded like a challenge!

I followed the recipe and made a few changes to adapt the recipe to a vegan gluten free diet. I used 3 cups of Bob's Red Mill All Purpose flour, instead of whole wheat flour and 2 tbsp of raw Agave syrup instead of raw sugar. As most beer is made of wheat and has other gluten ingredients such as barley and hops, instead I added a bottle of New Grist Gluten Free beer. To make the bread savoury I added spices: 1/8 Thyme, 1/8 Italian Spices, 1/8 Ground Coriander Seed, 2-3 cloves of crushed fresh garlic and 1/3 cup fresh finely chopped parsley.

When I added the beer to the dry mixture it began to fizz and the batter turned the consistency of pancake mix. I was rather worried when this happened, but then I figured it was just the yeast reacting to the flour. It is a bit surprising to see a "bread" mixture be so watery, it was almost like conducting a science experiment! Perhaps this could be a recipe done with children. The mixing didn't allow for using my hands, I'd recommend a whisk to get rid of all the lumps.

The bread still managed to turn out fine and was very fragrant. My husband, Mathieu, was quite happy to enjoy the bread.

It's difficult to find a gluten free vegan bread that isn't stone hard or readily available in grocery stores. Often, I have to be mindful of looking at ingredients when shopping and of cross contamination. It's amazing how often the gluten free items are lumped in with regular flour items. I'm incredibly excited to have made this recipe, if it wasn't for HH, I wouldn't have even thought to do so. Thank you!

What Vegan Means: Growth

Posted by: Andrea Dermos |

Category: Guests

Today's guest post is from JL. Post-40 JL Fields became a marathoner and triathlete, changed careers and transitioned from vegetarian to vegan. She now blogs about vegan cooking (and wine!) and fitness at JL Goes Vegan: Food & Fitness with a Side of Kale and is the editor of Stop Chasing Skinny: Find Happiness Beyond the Scale.

I used to associate the word vegan with food. Only. I was vegetarian for many years before assuming a plant-based diet and that word--vegan--represented something very scary to me. It meant giving up eggs, cheese, butter and yogurt -- I was sure those were the only foods keeping me from eating flesh.

I stopped eating meat, poultry and pork after a trip to Kenya. I attended a ceremony for work and was introduced to a goat whose sad fate was to then be slaughtered and boiled. I ate a piece of him that night, assuming a refusal to consume him would be seen as a sign of disrespect. The next day, on my way to South Africa, I phoned my husband back in the U.S. to announce that I was a vegetarian.

The journey was a bumpy one (there was one Kentucky Fried Chicken incident--don’t ask) and I played the role of fraudulent vegetarian by identifying as one but I continued to eat seafood. Four years into it I stopped eating all flesh. I continued, however, to consume that which I could not imagine giving up--dairy, eggs and honey--for three more years.

Nearly two years ago I made a decision to follow a plant-based diet. I called myself vegan but it was about the food. I gave up animal products when I discovered after a two-week cleanse, in which no dairy was allowed, that I was only an egg away from eating vegan. So I ditched the eggs and did not resume the dairy. I have never looked back.

As the months progressed, and I began learning more about the vegan diet (and being vegan in general) I couldn’t turn away from what I was seeing and learning. That how we get our dairy and eggs is as inhumane as the mass killing of animals for meat. That I can get calcium directly from the source -- greens from the ground -- and cut out the middleman (middle cow?).

(Photo Source)

I read about a goat named Clover at the Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary. She was saved from slaughter and she will live the rest of her days as a free, happy goat at the WFAS (I now sponsor her). It all came full circle. I went vegetarian because of a goat. I started eating plant-based for diet. I now embrace and claim the label vegan completely, because of another goat.

What does vegan mean to me? Being compassionate to others -- animals and humans -- and expecting the same in return.