About

Who am I?

Hello and welcome to my blog! My name is Sarah, and I am so glad you’re here. I am a student at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia, however my home and  family are in lovely Kansas City. I will graduate VCU in May of 2014 with a bachelor’s degree in social work- both a terrifying and exhilarating thought! Despite school being a high priority in my life currently, I do still love to make time to cook, read, play music, and surround myself with some truly wonderful people.

 Why do I blog?

The idea to start a food blog was not my idea, but belongs to one of my best friends Emily.  Emily suggested that I start blogging one day after I rambled for far too long about new recipes I had been trying. Her idea sparked something in me- a challenge, a goal, an experience, an opportunity- and I ran with it. Ever since then, I have increased my efforts to try new recipes and step out of my comfort zone in the kitchen. That’s what I hope this blog can do for you as well. I hope it encourages you to try something new, to dig back into your recipe books, and shake things up a bit.

The other undeniable factor about cooking is that it brings people together. Eating is universal.  I love sharing and trading recipes, associating fun memories with a certain dish, and reliving family traditions based around favorite foods and one table.  I hope this blog provides a space and place to connect in those ways , as well as provide documentation of   those family and friend favorite dishes.

Why vegetarian?

I made the transition to being a vegetarian in the summer of 2008. I was about to be a junior in high school.  Someone told me in passing that the meat industry was harmful to the environment. At first I did not want to believe them, but I was too intrigued to leave the matter alone. I did a lot of research, talked to my doctor, and made the decision.  It was an abrupt transition, but thankfully my family rolled with it and was very gracious. My gratitude goes out particularly to my mother who had to adjust some of her cooking habits to accommodate my new dietary decision.

There are many reasons to be a vegetarian, which vary for every individual. Some people are vegetarians for animal rights issues, because they don’t enjoy the taste of meat, or for health reasons. These are all very valid reasons. For me personally, the two main reasons I am a vegetarian is that 1) the way meat is currently produced is extremely harmful to our environment and 2) a vegetarian diet is far less wasteful. Here are a few facts and stats that support these claims. Sources are posted below for this data.

Claim 1: meat production is bad for the environment.

  •  “According to the UN, the livestock sector is responsible for 18 percent of greenhouse gas emissions, around 40 percent more than the entire transport sector- cars, trucks, planes, trains, and ships- combined.”- Eating Animals, page 58
  • “The most current data even quantifies the role of diet: omnivores contribute seven times the volume of greenhouse gases that vegans do.”- Eating Animals, page 58

Claim 2: A vegetarian diet is less wasteful- much more water, energy, and resources are used to maintain the meat industry opposed to growing crops.

  • “It takes five pounds of grain and 2,500 gallons of water to make one pound of beef,… If all households decreased their beef purchases by just one pound per year, 250 billion gallons of water would be saved.  It would take five days for this amount of water to pour over Niagara falls.” – The Green Book, page69-70
  • “If just 20 percent of households in the United States and Canada substituted four ounces of beef for four ounces of soy per week, the annual water savings would be enough to provide ten gallons of drinking water to every person in the world.”- The Green Book, page 71

I do not include this section on my vegetarianism as a way to hold something against those who eat meat. Being a vegetarian is not for everyone, I absolutely understand that. However, since being a vegetarian is a life choice I have made for myself, I chose to reflect that in this blog.  For those who cannot imagine that a practical, nutritious, or delicious vegetarian diet – I hope to prove you wrong, and I hope you keep reading this blog. I so appreciate your open mindedness and always invite conversation for those of you who have questions or reservations.

 Sources

Rogers, Elizabeth, and Thomas Kostigen. The Green Book: The Everyday Guide to Saving the Planet One Simple Step at a Time. New York: Three Rivers, 2007. Print.

Foer, Jonathan Safran. Eating Animals. New York: Little, Brown and, 2009. Print.

25 thoughts on “About

  1. Beth Collins says:

    Love this, Sarah! I will be following you and using your recipes. I have been a vegetarian for almost thirty years now…and am going to love learning new things from you!

    • aresr says:

      Ah Thank you so much! I didn’t know you were a vegetarian too! If you ever have any recipe suggestions by all means, send them my way. I love trying new things! And thanks for your support 🙂

    • aresr says:

      Thank you so much Mimi! I really appreciate that. You’re so sweet to follow me. This project probably has roots to the days where I spend hours typing up recipes from your FOOD magazines several years back. Thanks for the support all along.

  2. Sarie Sisler says:

    From your same-named second cousin and fellow foodie: I love you, and this blog! You are living in my hometown now, too, which is very cool. I will try some of the baking with all-purpose gluten-free flours and let you know how it turns out. Sarah (and Ellie)

    • aresr says:

      Aw Sarie thank you so much! And I would lovee to hear about any and all gluten free adaptions you make. I’m going to do a few weeks of gluten free eating and then a few weeks of vegan eating sometime soon in order to get a better handle on both diet forms as well as increase my recipes available in those areas. I hope you’re able to find something you enjoy!
      love you back! (and that sweet daughter of yours too, of course)

    • aresr says:

      Thank you so much Danielle! You are so sweet! It probably looks like I know more than I do, because I am definitely a beginner in the kitchen in many ways. I do find it fun though! And yummy!
      Thanks for checking out my blog! I hope you find something you like 🙂

  3. Julie says:

    Sarah, I really enjoyed your discussion of your reasons for going veg…and I agree wholeheartedly!! I was fortunate to choose Foer’s book when I first decided to read up on why to not eat meat. It had a huge impact on me and it’s neat to see it has impacted others as well. Your blog is beautiful…keep up the good work!

    • aresr says:

      Thank you so much Julie! It is an incredibly powerful book, isn’t it? I am glad to see that you not only read it, but took responsibility for your new knowledge. I hope you are able to find some recipes here on my blog that you enjoy! Come back soon, I update it regularly. Happy Holidays!
      -Sarah

  4. betsy shipley says:

    Hi Sarah. I wrote you many months ago about tempeh and your website is awesome! It looks like you are doing well with your recipes and pictures, keep up the great work. We have been working on a tempeh incubator that could be used in restaurants and small shops making artisan tempeh for the local community and found the right people to take this project to the next level. We may have an appliance on the market by late summer so stay tuned for future updates.
    betsy shipley
    makethebesttempeh.org
    PS Check out The Tempeh Girls on Facebook that was started by Joy DuPuis and her love of tempeh, I am the latest and oldest member of the group and actually have a picture or two of our tempeh.

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