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Topic: Having a holiday vegetarian meal for the family....just need some advice  (Read 3154 times)
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missliz01
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« on: September 16, 2007 07:23:04 PM »

Hey guys and gals,
  This may seem stupid or lame, but being that I've only been veggie for about a year, I'm not sure about this and thought maybe you guys would have some friendly advice for me.  My boyfriend and I just bought our first house and are super excited about it.  Now that we've got plenty of space for entertaining, we wanted to have our families over for Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner or something like that.  I guess my only worry is that we are the only vegetarians and I'm not sure how everyone would react to eating a vegetarian dinner.  I think my parents and brother and his mom and brother would be cool with it, but I know his aunt is a real "meat and potatoes" kinda lady.  She raised her kids that way too, so I know his cousins love meat as well.  I guess I was just wondering if anyone else out there has been in this type of situation and what you did for dinner.  I really don't want to prepare any meat.  I was thinking I could do a nice veggie loaf with nut gravy or veggie lasagna and then some cool, creative side dishes.  Should I let them know they can bring a dish if they really want to eat meat?  Am I making way too big a deal of this?  I know every family is different but I was just hoping to get a little perspective on this.  Thanks!
« Last Edit: September 16, 2007 07:24:41 PM by squozentoad01 » THIS ROCKS   Logged
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« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2007 08:43:45 PM »

I don't know how to say this w/o being mean. The thing is, if you went to someone else's place for a meal you would probably expect them to offer something to accommodate your vegetarian diet or give you the option to bring something. In my opinion, I think your best bet would be to either:
a.) Explain the menu when sending/calling invites and ask them to bring a meat dish.
b.) Suck it up and go to Boston Market (or the like) and buy an already cooked turkey/ham. That way you don't have do deal w/ the raw meat, but you're still offering a meat dish.

I really hope I'm not offending anyone w/ this post. I just remember when I was a vegetarian people always went out of their way to accommodate me, so I would make a point to do the same for them.
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« Reply #2 on: September 17, 2007 06:41:43 AM »

No it's not mean at all.  I didn't think of it that way.  I think my problem was that I didn't want to deal with the raw meat, but getting it catered from somewhere is a great idea!  Thanks:)
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« Reply #3 on: September 17, 2007 08:40:31 AM »

Thank you for taking what I said so well. I know exactly what you mean about the raw meat. I cooked my first turkey last year and it was the most disgusting thing ever. If I wasn't such a traditionalist I would buy a pre-cooked turkey myself.  Cheesy
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playinghooky
« Reply #4 on: September 17, 2007 11:55:14 AM »

I've been a vegetarian for 10 years and even had a potluck vegetarian wedding.  I'm not some raging angry vegetarian, and I don't mind someone eating meat in front of me.  But, in terms of whether you should buy prepared meat for the meal is really up to why you became vegetarian.  If it's about animal cruelty, then why would you participate in buying it for them, if you wouldn't eat it yourself.  If it's just about diet and health, then you don't necessarily need to force that on others and can accommodate their needs.  I have held holiday meals for meat eaters and vegetarians alike, and always just made a range of delicious meat free dishes.  I make a hearty mushroom gravy, roasted garlic mashed potatoes with fresh dill, Martha Stewart's nut loaf that is divine, real green bean cassarole with fried shallots, stuffing with rosemary bread, celery, mushrooms, onions and cranberries, ginger carrot soup, fresh cranberry sauce with pineapple juice, and good chewy crusty bread and a salad.  If someone really misses the turkey, maybe they can buy a roasted breast or two to share, but if you make an awesome meal with all the sides people love, I think the meat eaters can make it one holiday meal without the turkey. 
Just my opinion and experience talking.  Not gospel.  Congrats on your new house and upcoming entertaining.  Should be fun!  Just do your best, whatever you feel is right, and if people don't like it, it's their issue, not yours.  Besides, you are having them over.  They didn't have to cook everything.  You also could ask the people who you know are good cooks, to bring a dish.  Then it's not all on your shoulders.  Best of luck to you!
 
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« Reply #5 on: September 18, 2007 10:20:35 AM »

I agree with the last post, if you're veggie for ethical reasons it doesn't make any sense to provide meat at your meal.  You're doing something nice by providing a delicious holiday meal, your guests will appreciate that (hopefully) and won't die from having one meatless meal. 
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« Reply #6 on: September 18, 2007 12:24:48 PM »

I've been in this situation before - I think what's key is, how much do your/his family members complain?

It may be worth it to just suck it up and make 1 turkey, keeping all else vegetarian.

With some people, you know they won't make an issue of one meatless meal. But others, they will NOT stop bringing it up, which can make things unpleasant. On the one hand, well, too bad for them right?  But if you can't find a way NOT to include "Uncle Bob," well, just make it easier on everyone and give the guy some turkey.

I'm something of a conflict avoider - I'd rather compromise then spend a full day bickering, or listening to bickering, etc...

If you think everyone is down and most won't whine, or if you think that one aunt/cousins won't make a scene, make some tasty sides and get a tofurkey!
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bigeyes
« Reply #7 on: September 18, 2007 01:29:07 PM »

Please don't take this the wrong way, because I mean it with the most sincere and honest kindness.

I would never, ever try to sneak meat or eggs into the food of a vegetarian friend or family member, or give them grief for their beliefs, but you would not believe how many times I have had people try to sneak tofu into my food. Angry

I am completely anti soy.  I do not like it when someone tries to force me to eat it and I think I would leave if they didn't warn me beforehand or ask me if I'd like to bring something myself.  I feel the same way about spam, and I get really pissed when someone tries to hide it in my food also.

You might want to ask one of the relatives if they want to bring a small turkey roast.  That way everyone has the option of trying the veggie dishes if they want, but nobody feels pressured to convert for the day, ykwim?  And you don't have to cook it in your house, which I can understand being upsetting to you.

I totally respect other people's beliefs and would think by offering a blended veggie/non veggie meal you could maybe win over some of your relatives while not completely shutting down communication with the others.  Since thanksgiving is about spending time with your family more than it's about the food, really.  So, generally, what poo head said. Wink
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« Reply #8 on: September 19, 2007 08:36:28 AM »

Thank you all so much for your advice/opinions/contributions.  It's really helped shed some light on the whole situation and has given me great ideas!
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dbh2ppa
« Reply #9 on: September 20, 2007 08:43:58 PM »

IMHO... it's YOUR house, it's YOUR dinner... they are not gonna die because they spent one holiday without eating a dead animal! And you shouldn't have to compromise your beliefs in order to offer someone dinner.
As long as it's a healthy, tasty meal, they don't have anything to complaint about.
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bigeyes
« Reply #10 on: September 20, 2007 08:49:40 PM »

Yeah, that pesky soy or nut allergy that causes their throat to close up is only a minor inconvenience. Roll Eyes



Really, it depends on your family and friends how big of a deal it is.  You're the only one who can figure that out.  What a bunch of people on the internet think about it isn't going to make a bit of difference.
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starblossom
« Reply #11 on: September 24, 2007 10:08:54 AM »

It depends on how strongly you feel about meat. If it upsets you to handle it, buy it, and/or have it in your home, that is something to consider. If your relatives will whine endlessly that there is no dead bird on the table, that is worth considering as well. I do think that since they are going to be guests in your home, eating the food that you prepared for them, you should do what you feel most comfortable with. It would help to find out what sort of veggie dishes they do like, and explain the menu to them ahead of time so they aren't faced with the surprise of weird soy and vegetable products they don't want to touch. If you feel comfortable having meat in your home, you could invite them to bring something. If you don't want a gigantic bird in the middle of your table be specific in what you t hink would be a good dish to bring (I think I would explode if someone brought a whole turkey into my home!!)

I'd also like to note that it is completely different for a vegetarian to provide a meal for meateaters, than it is the other way around. It is not against the ethics of a meateater to serve vegetables but if someone is vegetarian for ethical reasons, it is against their belief to serve meat.
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littlehajerika
« Reply #12 on: September 24, 2007 01:26:44 PM »

I am completely anti soy. 
Yeah, that pesky soy or nut allergy that causes their throat to close up is only a minor inconvenience. Roll Eyes

So are you anti-soy because you are allergic? That is quite different from a moral opposition to eat it, though I don't know why you might be morally opposed to eating soy.  In any case, I would think that people who are allergic to soy would have to be as careful as vegans in what they eat since soy or soy lecethin is now in so many processed foods.

Anyway, I had a graduation party this summer for 50 plus non-vegetarian people where all the food served was vegan. Except for a very few silly comments before the meal was served no one complained and almost everything was eaten. I come from a family of VERY traditional eaters. (One of my cousins gave me a bag of whole wheat pasta that she had because her husband only eats white pasta) A large number of them are also hunters or waterman who make their living from the crab and oyster industry. 

I think that you should probably not make anything too crazy but I don't think that you should break down and buy meat for them. You can tell them before hand if you want, I didn't, but everyone knew that I was a vegan and it was a party for me.  This isn't exactly the same for a holiday like thanksgiving and christmas where there is so much emphasis on the traditional foods being served.
I guess the decision is up to you, but I think you might find that people are more open minded then you think and as long as the food is good and you serve most of the familiar staples, I think you will be fine.

Good luck!
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bigeyes
« Reply #13 on: September 24, 2007 07:42:29 PM »



I'd also like to note that it is completely different for a vegetarian to provide a meal for meateaters, than it is the other way around. It is not against the ethics of a meateater to serve vegetables but if someone is vegetarian for ethical reasons, it is against their belief to serve meat.
True, but when you are dealing with family and you tell them their beliefs are unethical, it makes for some unpleasant holiday meals.  Isn't it easier to just tell the meat-eaters to bring something they like because you won't cook it. 

The OP asked.  Each person has to consider what their friends and family believe and how open they are to vegetarianism, though I have to figure if they are coming to her house they have a pretty good idea it's going to be meat-free, ykwim?  If they don't know and they get a speech, it's possible they are going to always remember that you use the holidays as an excuse to force your beliefs on them, and that isn't going to be pleasant for any of you.   People can get touchy when they are told their desires are wrong and horrible.   I'm just telling you this because I once went on a trip with a friend who converted to vegetarianism, but I didn't know it in advance.  We all chipped in for groceries and she bought them....then we found out.  Angry   What would have been a pleasant weekend with old friends turned into a huge debate about who was the most ethical and moral instead.  Not fun for any of us, and much alcohol was consumed.  Cheesy

Of course, I still chuckle at the fact that my ex-friend is an 'ethical vegetarian who wears leather.'  Huh


I'm not bashing vegetarians, I'm just saying when it's family, you ought to be able to ask them what they want instead of having strangers on the internet guess.


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bigeyes
« Reply #14 on: September 24, 2007 08:02:20 PM »


So are you anti-soy because you are allergic? That is quite different from a moral opposition to eat it, though I don't know why you might be morally opposed to eating soy.  In any case, I would think that people who are allergic to soy would have to be as careful as vegans in what they eat since soy or soy lecethin is now in so many processed foods.
I am extremely careful, I make my own mixes for pancakes and bisquick because they contain soy.  I buy organic shortening made from palm oil.  I use an oil pump sprayer instead of buying the sprays with lecithin.  I read the labels on everything and if I can't find it without soy, I just don't buy it.

Soy allergies are common, that's why I mentioned it. I am anti soy because it's a GMO and is hidden in so many foods since it's cheap that it's difficult for people to know how much of it they are actually ingesting.  You can't eat something in moderation when they call it by aliases like vegetable broth, thickener, and emulsifier.  It is an endocrine disrupter and is a huge no-no to thyroid patients like myself.  I think if people are going to eat it they need to be able to make the choice themselves, that's all.  In my case my veggie friend lived on soy products, and I can't live with them.
I think that you should probably not make anything too crazy but I don't think that you should break down and buy meat for them. You can tell them before hand if you want, I didn't, but everyone knew that I was a vegan and it was a party for me.  This isn't exactly the same for a holiday like thanksgiving and christmas where there is so much emphasis on the traditional foods being served.
I guess the decision is up to you, but I think you might find that people are more open minded then you think and as long as the food is good and you serve most of the familiar staples, I think you will be fine.
Yes, that!  If they know you are a vegetarian they shouldn't be surprised, but it might be nice to tip off the diehard carnivores, yk?
I agree that you shouldn't have to buy or do anything with meat yourself, and now that I think about it, you can tell them that it makes you physically ill to smell it.  If you told me you couldn't have meat in your house because the smell made you nauseated, I could sympathize  without feeling like I was being preached to.   It's the way it's presented, and sometimes with family it's easier not to have the arguments about whether it's right or wrong.   
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littlehajerika
« Reply #15 on: September 24, 2007 10:29:39 PM »

I am anti soy because it's a GMO and is hidden in so many foods since it's cheap that it's difficult for people to know how much of it they are actually ingesting. 

I agree with this problem with soy, fortunately alot of processed vegetarian products are also organic and therefore non-GMO. So I don't know that this is as much of a problem with these types of processed foods. If squozentoad01 is making these things from recipes, they will probably be more whole foods based anyhow, so this wouldn't be as much of a problem.
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bigeyes
« Reply #16 on: September 24, 2007 11:07:45 PM »

Hopefully.  It's scary to me how many things they have replaced with soy.  It's even in water packed tuna, which isn't a concern for a veggie, but for me it was like WTF is soy doing in my tuna? Huh (enough of this, if you're curious, PM me, otherwise I won't threadjack any more.)

Back to the topic, I think the important thing is that everyone has a good time and neither the hosts or guests feel uncomfortable or judged.  Maybe this will be the year your aunt discovers veggie food isn't all bad.   Cheesy
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« Reply #17 on: September 25, 2007 06:27:25 PM »

Thanks again everyone for your opinions/ideas.  It has all given me great insight.  Though I feel completely comfortable talking to our family about this issue, and I do not look to a bunch of "strangers" to tell me what the answer is, it does help to get other's perspective on the topic.  Thanks!
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starblossom
« Reply #18 on: September 25, 2007 08:15:25 PM »

True, but when you are dealing with family and you tell them their beliefs are unethical, it makes for some unpleasant holiday meals.  Isn't it easier to just tell the meat-eaters to bring something they like because you won't cook it. 
Where did I suggest that she should say "your beliefs are unethical" or "wow you're a horrible person"? I am merely explaining that some vegetarians consider it unethical to cook or serve meat. Therefore, a vegetarian preparing meat for an omnivore is not the same as an omnivore preparing a salad or whatever for a vegetarian. The ethics involved are different. I meant no offense by the terminology I used; I was simply stating a fact. It has absolutely nothing to do with you personally.

I think the difference between you and me is that we disagree on how guests should be treated. I do not expect meateaters to cater to my diet; I understand it can be a pain in the ass, so I offer to bring a dish to the host's home to share at dinner. Similarily, I don't appreciate someone expecting me to cater to them, especially when serving meat is against my beliefs. I will certainly try to make something they will enjoy, but it won't be meat. Smiley

The OP asked.  Each person has to consider what their friends and family believe and how open they are to vegetarianism, though I have to figure if they are coming to her house they have a pretty good idea it's going to be meat-free, ykwim?  If they don't know and they get a speech, it's possible they are going to always remember that you use the holidays as an excuse to force your beliefs on them, and that isn't going to be pleasant for any of you.   People can get touchy when they are told their desires are wrong and horrible.  I'm just telling you this because I once went on a trip with a friend who converted to vegetarianism, but I didn't know it in advance.  We all chipped in for groceries and she bought them....then we found out.  Angry   What would have been a pleasant weekend with old friends turned into a huge debate about who was the most ethical and moral instead.  Not fun for any of us, and much alcohol was consumed.  Cheesy
I'm sorry you had a bad experience with vegetarians. I hope you realize not all of us are like this. I haven't seen anyone in this thread suggesting that the OP stand on a table and give a self rightous speech. I am well aware of the fact that many meat-eaters are touchy (your reply to my post is evidence of this, and I didn't even attack you!) Smiley. This is actually a topic I normally avoid, especially in real life. I am only discussing it now because I am on a vegetarian board where no one is forced to read my words, especially if vegetarianism bothers them it is easy to avoid such posts Wink
I'm not bashing vegetarians, I'm just saying when it's family, you ought to be able to ask them what they want instead of having strangers on the internet guess.
But the OP doesn't have vegetarian family members and wants advice from other vegetarians on how to gracefully deal with the situation. Smiley I agree it's important to consider her family's tastes, but I don't think she should make herself feel uncomfortable in her own home. Finding a balance can be difficult.

And I am finished replying to this thread now. I don't enjoy explaining my diet to other people any more than you do! It's not nice to feel judged so I do my best to be sensitive to other people. I think it's important to realize that many things that vegetarians say are not meant as insults and it can be extremely difficult at times to say anything at all without it being taken the wrong way!!

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cinnamon teal
« Reply #19 on: September 25, 2007 09:46:46 PM »

Hi!  It sounds like you have a plan and you've already had a lot of advice given to you, so I'm not going to add anything there.  I just wanted to make a recipe suggestion.  For the last few years, my mom's been making the most kick-ass stuffing ever, and it's totally veg friendly.  It's the Wild Rice and Porcini Stuffing from Joy of Cooking.  It's got cranberries and mushrooms and it's a hit with veg and omni people alike.  If you're interested and you don't have a copy of the Joy of Cooking, pm me and I'll type it out for you.

Best of luck to you with your holiday meal. Smiley
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« Reply #20 on: September 26, 2007 11:30:14 AM »

starblossom and jenna rose, thank you for your kind responses.  I feel that you know exactly where I coming from and what I was looking for.  cinnamon teal, thank you for the awesome recipe suggestion.  I love wild rice and am a HUGE (and that's an understatement) fan of cranberries.  I don't like mushrooms on their own, but when added into a dish such as this, I think they bring a nice element to the ensemble.  My mom has the Joy of Cooking book so I'll get it from her so you don't have to type it all out.  Thank you for the offer though.  Wow I'm really excited now about all of the possibilities.  Grin
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nasty_wench
« Reply #21 on: October 01, 2007 01:22:18 PM »

I'm a vegetarian and have been so since I was three.

I refuse to prepare meat. If someone wants to consume in front of me, no problem.

When I entertain, friends know it's vegetarian fare. But they also know I'm going the xtra mile to make a great, tasty, well balanced meal.

I totally appreciate it when people go that extra mile for me. However I do no support animal cruelty in any manner and therefore cannot compromise my morals to accommodate an omnivore. You see: I do not eat meat because I am morally against it. I do not know anyone who eats meat because they are morally committed to that path.

There are some fantastic Moosewood cookbooks out there. Lavish and delicious, my meat-eating partner loves every recipe I've prepared from any of their books and never asks me to "add a bit of meat" to it.

My fav is Moosewood's Simple Suppers, but Moosewood Celebrates is a close second.
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« Reply #22 on: October 01, 2007 09:05:43 PM »

Thanks nasty_wench, I have never heard of the moosewood cookbooks but I will definitely check them out!  Smiley
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nasty_wench
« Reply #23 on: October 02, 2007 11:53:26 AM »

They have TONS of free recipes on their website here: http://www.moosewoodrestaurant.com/recipes_archive.html.
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« Reply #24 on: October 03, 2007 10:25:30 AM »

That website is awesome!  Thanks for sharing.  I really want to try making the jerk tofu now:)
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nasty_wench
« Reply #25 on: October 03, 2007 12:01:25 PM »

I have 5 or 6 of their cookbooks. I'd recommend almost any of them.
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« Reply #26 on: October 06, 2007 06:19:30 PM »

You should check out http://veganyumyum.com/ it has some excellent vegan autum side dishes (roasted squash with thyme,  lemon pepper brocollini)  which would all be excellent with a hearty main like a nut loaf.   
Unless your family has a lot of people who have issues with vegetarians (as opposed to a family of meat eaters where people eat meat because they don't want to be vegetarian) you should be fine serving a meat  free meal.  In fact,  I imagine the family would expect it.  In my family about half of us are veg and at xmas every year I always make a different veg main course for the vegetarians that we eat along with the sides that my parents prepare.  A lot of the time the meat eaters end up trying to steal the veg meal  (hey if your choice was buckwheat crepes stuffed with caramalized onion,  roasted portabellos and gruyere cheese and covered in white wine thyme cream sauce or slices of turkey what would any reasonable person choose?).
Just make the meal absolutely great and I doubt anybody will complain about the missing meat.

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« Reply #27 on: October 09, 2007 03:14:46 AM »

I'm an ethical omni who seems to be falling closer and closer to vego every day (haven't cooked meat for myself in a few weeks, but have eaten it when out), and I would still feel uncomfortable not providing/ inviting others to bring meat if they want it. I'd feel personally like I was pushing my views/ lifestyle onto them.

For a casual dinner with friends or whatever I have no problem at all with serving them vego (er, about half are vego anyway, so it's easiest like that), but this is a special occasion in which a big hunk of meat on the table is tradition, and as such I think refusing to allow meat on the table might be a bit more political than it would be for any other dinner party.

I'm already thinking about Christmas, and what will happen. I'd probably be most comfortable eating a vegie roast, but I know that family members would be upset that I wasn't eating the 'celebration food', and as I do still eat some meat (when I feel like it) it would feel churlish to say 'No, I'm not eating this meat today'. My solution is shelling out for free range turkey.

To the OP, if meat is going to be involved, maybe think about preparing it yourself if it means you can be sure it was free range, organic etc (of course, whether this is practical depends on why you're vego).
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sticky_fingers
« Reply #28 on: October 09, 2007 04:21:01 AM »

Quote from: jenna rose
In all honesty people do -not- have to have meat at every meal and they won't starve or anything like that.  I'm vegan for ethical reasons so there's no way I'd bring meat or animal products into my own home.

I agree completely. If you have gone to the trouble of cooking up a lovely spread, your family should be grateful. It's not at all offensive to serve an entirely vegan or vegetarian feast - it's not as abstaining from meat for one meal goes against their morals. Wink

They eat meat out of preference where as you don't eat meat for ethical reasons. (but it's a good idea to find out if they have any allergies and never never lie to them about what's in their food.)

It's entirely acceptable for you to politely decline meat at their house. But for them to decline your food, or bring their own meat would be rude. It would be like saying "hey I know you spent ages making me this three course meal from scratch, but I'm gonna bring mcdonalds and eat it in front of you, because that's what I like." Very rude. You wouldn't go to a dinner party and leave brussels sprouts on your plate because you don't like them.

I really think you have to go all out and show them that they're not missing out on anything though!

Stuff that I like to make for holidays  includes... herb roasted veg, potato salad with veganaise, punk rock chickpea gravy from vegan with a vengeance, home made biscuits, pumpkin seed crusted tofu with home made cranberry sauce, maple glazed green beans, orange glazed beetroot, mashed potatoes, stuffing. I've had good results with home made tofurkey - my relatives loved it.

For dessert - the most important part! gingerbread apple pie, pumpkin/sweet potato pie, pecan pie, home made vegan ice cream/sorbets, chocolate orange mousse pie, ginger cookies, oh and strawberries dipped in melted dark chocolate (I live in the southern hemisphere - summer christmas! strawberry season!).

ARGH now I'm getting excited. I can't wait for christmas... I freakin love to cook.
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« Reply #29 on: October 11, 2007 09:19:21 PM »

Hey thanks pixiewhip, lupinbunny and sticky_fingers for your thoughts/input.  I really have taken a lot of great ideas away from this thread and I'm so excited for the holidays to arrive now. Smiley
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« Reply #30 on: October 11, 2007 09:43:32 PM »

speaking as someone who hosts all her families holiday meals (until this year's thanksgiving, sore spot...............)

i think that as a HOST it is your RESPONSIBILITY to make sure every GUEST is satisfied....but many people lose sight of that....

i am NOT saying prepare meat, if you are morally opposed to preparing it yourself, or even paying for it, then dont....but you should instead make the meal potluck. then everyone will be satisfied....or you should take a poll..and see if everyone would be fine with an entirely veg meal...they might be down to try something new....if not, work it out...you are the host, not the dictator, and the party isnt for YOU, its for them....thats what parties are.....unless they are birthday or anniversary parties....

i am a steadfast (and yes, morally focused) omnivore, and if someone told me i wouldnt be allowed to eat meat because *their* beliefs forbade it, i would excuse myself from the festivities, i have places to be where *everyone* is welcome....forcing your beliefs onto other individuals for the sake of your beliefs is wrong, just like compromising your beliefs for the sake of a party would be wrong....

i also respect FULLY and COMPLETELY the rights of vegans and veg.'s and would prepare multiple meals for any that would be attending a meal at my house, out of respect, not because of their *moral* belief (or even lack their of...some people jsut want to be veg to be thin...) but because they are GUESTS in my home, and as their host, it is my job to see that they are happy, and leave full and content, wanting to join us again.....
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« Reply #31 on: October 11, 2007 11:04:50 PM »

But don't you think in that situation, you're sending the message to the host that veg*n food is somehow inferior? Say your new neighbours invited you over for a meal and they were from another country, and you turned up with your own food to eat, saying "your food is too spicy" or something. Is that not completely the same thing? If my guests turned up unwilling to even try my food, and bought along their own food, they wouldn't be welcome back.

As a veg*n host, I do make sure every guest is welcomed and satisfied - I just don't think that meat needs to be involved for that to happen.
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« Reply #32 on: October 12, 2007 12:08:11 AM »

But don't you think in that situation, you're sending the message to the host that veg*n food is somehow inferior? Say your new neighbours invited you over for a meal and they were from another country, and you turned up with your own food to eat, saying "your food is too spicy" or something. Is that not completely the same thing? If my guests turned up unwilling to even try my food, and bought along their own food, they wouldn't be welcome back.

As a veg*n host, I do make sure every guest is welcomed and satisfied - I just don't think that meat needs to be involved for that to happen.

oh no, that is COMPLETELY rude, *just showing up* with your own food would be offensive...but i am asian and irish aswell as a meateater, so i am sensitive about this issue too, and i am an adventurous eater, where my husband wasnt (he is moreso now)...

when dealing with guests who may be unfamiliar with your menu, it is a good idea to include a menu in your invitation, with a note that any special dietary concerns (allergies, veg*n, aversions, diabetes, etc) should be made aware to the host/hostess when the RSVP is made (or when there is no RSVP, ASAP...) so that the hostess can accomodate anything within reason (obviously no favorite foods will be honored, but if there is a serious reason, like the ones listed above, then it is a common courtesy to accomodate them)...

i would not *not* attend a party that was completely vegan or veg*n IF the host was courteous and made that fact aware ahead of time...i am open, but it should be my *option* not forced on me because it is his/her house/beliefs when she is *inviting* me in....

veg*n food isnt inferior in any way, i LOVE vegetables, and i eat them all the time, i eat them more than anyone in my house, and eat them with every *meal* i prepare (not all snacks, but most) but i do love meat (only chicken and seafood, too much red meat and the iron in my blood gets to high, and i get ill...if my iron count goes down, i can have steak occasionally with my husband), and i do eat it. i also deal with the disapproving attitudes of people who think i cant love animals as much as i do, and still eat meat....but its ok, i know how i feel, and i respect everyone's opinions on this subject (i will admit i dont associate and have the least amount of respect for people who hunt for sport, but they have the *right* to live as they please, as long as i dont have to know them...)

**edited**

personally, when inviting someone to dinner, or considering making them a food item, i ALWAYS ask about food allergies and concerns, because they can be anything from mildly irritating (my seasonal ingestion allergy to citric acid) to possibly fatal (my sister's ingested coconut allergy, one teaspoon could kill her if she swallowed it, she needs to get a new epi pen now that she has insurance again)

but the reason its so important to me IS because of those experiences...i get a rash when i eat strawberries in the fall and winter, and its very uncomfortable....

my sister had a macaroon at my grandfather's funeral, and almost had to go to the hospital, but i caught her before it passed by her tongue, and she spit it out and washed her mouth out in time...but her mouth and throat were swollen for the whole day, and she couldn't drink very well....if we weren't out of state, we would have taken her to our Dr.
« Last Edit: October 12, 2007 12:13:58 AM by MissDisney » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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« Reply #33 on: October 12, 2007 10:59:01 PM »

I think you should first find out how open your guests would be to a meatless thanksgiving. My family for instance would not take well to it at all. They are very very serious about their ham and turkey and just left it off without informing anyone. If they aren't too fond of meatless, you could buy a precooked or ask someone to bring a meat option.
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« Reply #34 on: October 13, 2007 05:55:59 AM »

You know when it gets right down to it, no one if forced to eat at a vegetarian or vegan's house.

If they will not be satisfied with the meal, the may decline the offer.

« Last Edit: October 13, 2007 05:56:45 AM by nasty_wench » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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