Martin and I both read the book "Eating Animals" by Jonathan Safran Foer over the holidays. It's a non-ficton book about the author's switch to vegetarianism after researching where meat actually comes from. I'm not sure if it's Safran Foer's fiction background that makes the book so convincing, but he really manages to bring home the horrors of factory farming in a way that makes it real. As he points out in the book, most of us on some level know what is happening at factory farms - but manage not to think about it too much. I'm not going to go into the specifics of the book here - but would encourage everyone to read it.
Martin and I have been vegetarian (with a few lapses, mainly on my part) for many years - but this book has inspired us to try to eat even fewer animal based foods (eggs, milk, etc.) and if we do eat those foods, to learn more about where they have come from and how they are produced. I have been cooking lots of vegan dishes lately, and have purchased a few cookbooks - Vegan Yum Yum (both the book and the blog) are great. I have made some delicious bananna bread from the Vegan Yum Yum book two times now - and Martin reckons it's the best he's had. I also made some choc chip cookies from Babycakes - those were not quite as successful, but I think that's my fault, not the book's! Adding a bit to the challenge of cooking vegan is that I am trying to cut back on gluten as well. Tonight, we will be having Smitten Kitchen's Mushroom Bourguignon - I'm really looking forward to it!
If anyone out there has any suggestions on great vegan/gluten free recipes and/or cookbooks - please send them my way! Now, to the bourguignon....