Sunday, October 25, 2009

To market, to market ...

... to buy the intestines of a fat pig?

Every fall, I look forward to the first autumn Sunday when the weather is cool enough for me to say, "Hey, it's time to make Chicken Sausage and Bean Ragout!"

This recipe comes from a wonderful cookbook called
Healthy Eating Step-by-Step (which is British, so it has cool terminology like "capsicum" instead of red pepper). I've been making this delicious and heart-warming stew for many years, using turkey Italian sausage instead of chicken.

Until today, my greenies.

Until today...

Let me preface this by saying, as
I have mentioned before, I am not a vegetarian.

I am, however, what some people call a flexitarian, a partial vegetarian, or, as a colleague put it recently, a "half-vegetarian." I eat fowl and fish, but no mammals. It began as sort of a haphazard thing, when I was 16 or so. I'm not, obviously, against eating animals.

However, I can't, in good conscious, support the livestock industry. The destruction of vast land resources, not to mention a serious contribution to global warming, are
the result of the cultivation of these animals.

So I try to eat conscientiously-raised fowl and fish, and I would estimate about 65% of my diet is vegetarian. I've been eating this way for about 16 years now, before Light Green, even before I recycled.

Something has changed in the way I eat more recently, however. I've started reading ingredient listings.

So, when I went to the grocery store, ready to buy all the supplies for my Turkey Sausage and Bean Ragout, I glanced at the ingredients of the turky sausage I've been buying for years ...

... to find that they are made with pork casings!

Gobble gobble! This man doesn't see any pig parts as he inspects this turkey, and neither should I!


While I know the contribution from the pork industry is probably minimal, it's the principle of the thing. And I know that, had I thought deeply about the nature of sausage, I probably would have realized what was lurking in my turkey sausage. But I never did.

I feel as though the turkey sausage producers should have been sensitive to this. After all, if someone wanted to eat pork, why eat a turkey sausage? Pork is ever-so-much-more delicious. Big bold letters should have announced: CAUTION: CONTAINS PIG!

Luckily, I was able to find these delectable (and spicy!) chicken sausages made without pork casings. As I type, I am pausing frequently to take bites from a bowl of delicious Chicken Sausage and Bean Ragout.

It just goes to prove: Always pay attention to what you put in your mouth. Good advice all-around, as far as I'm concerned.

No comments: