Sweet and Spicy Tomato and Kidney Bean Salad

One of the best things about not eating meat is that you can make meals without having to actually cook anything. Just cut, combine and stir. Whether you're in a hurry, feeling lazy or just want that fresh crunch, a plant based diet gives you the freedom to cook without literally cooking. 

Especially as the weather gets warmer, it's convenient to just cut and combine. It's also surprisingly tasty to keep those fresh ingredients in their natural state. 

The textures and flavors are vibrant and exciting. 

A little salt, a little acid, some  fat, a spice or two and you're all set with a delicious meal. 

1 can dark red kidney beans
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1 poblano pepper, diced
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1 long hot pepper, diced
1 serrano, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbls olive oil
2 1/2 tsps salt
1 1/2 tsps crushed pepper flakes
1 tsp black pepper

Toss all ingredients together in a large bowl. 

That's it. You're done. Enjoy your not so hard work.

Too Much Soy Milk

A non-dairy, non-meat diet is important to me. Because I truly believe in not exploiting animals.

Every summer, however, long before this diet, my right ear gave me problems. My sinuses would clog. Especially during sleep. This year however, has been the worst.

I managed to narrow down the culprits to either soy milk or quinoa. I'm certain I do have a bad reaction to too much quinoa. I can eat a little bit and not have a problem. But ever since I switched from almond milk to soy milk the problem has become pronounced. It doesn't appear to be an allergy, so much as a sensitivity. I can eat soy. But too much and doom.

Soy is not an essential component of a vegan diet. Beans, veg and grains can provide the majority of nutritional needs. Fortified cereal can supply the rest. Almond or rice milk is fortified with calcium and vitamin d. Soy products are a tasty departure from a typical vegan diet, but beware too much.