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.

Vegan Dining Out

It's nearly impossible to eat out when you adhere to a vegan diet. Everything in restaurants has meat or fish in it. In chains everything is smothered in cheese. Because cheese can make mediocre food taste good. And that's basically what most chain restaurants base their business model on. The restaurant industry really doesn't make much effort at all. Regardless of whether or not you choose to consume this meat or that meat or dairy or eggs, the restaurant industry has failed us all. They're just lazy profit mongers out to make a quick buck at our expense. That's my opinion anyway.

Even when I ate hamburgers and chicken and the like, I was never thrilled with what the food service world had to offer. Overpriced, oily, unhealthy and salty concoctions that barely scrape the edge of edible. With the exception of a few very places, it all pretty much sucked.

I'm no fan of Ruby Tuesday either, but I have to admit they do have some good vegan options. I took my mom out for her free birthday burger and didn't want to just watch her eat. I had the salad bar and veggie trio. Unlimited access to the salad bar and my choice of three sides. I took two baked potatoes and one grilled asparagus. The potatoes were great. I love a nice baked tater. The asparagus was kinda skimpy and slimy with oil. I shoulda got the steamed broccoli. You can't ruin that and I probably would've gotten a larger serving. Ruby Tuesday is notorious for small portions. They give you 10 french fries with your burger. My mom ordered an extra side of creamy cauliflower and it was literally 2 tablespoons in size for $3.

I guess they have to make up for that all you can eat salad bar and all those free hamburgers somehow.

The salad bar is pretty nice. It had three kinds of leafy greens. Balsamic vinegar. Nice. Black olives. Awesome. The sunflower seeds are a very nice touch. Green peppers. Tomatoes. Carrots. Red onions. Mushrooms. Broccoli. Green peas.

There is other non vegan stuff too, like egg and mayo based salads, ham and various cheeses. For you vegetarians and omnivores.

I would love to see more legumes or nuts. That would be superb. Black beans or chick peas. Almonds or peanuts. I'm not holding my breath.

In an ideal world, every person is a vegan and all restaurants are too. Unfortunately, we don't live in an ideal world. But thank you, Ruby Tuesday, for being ever so slightly more considerate than your peers.

This is not an advertisement. I have not been compensated. This blog is about my true experience and honest opinion.