Let me start with the punchline: I am moving to Colorado.
Now let me backup.
Last March I joined the Small Bites guest blogger team to write about Hudson Valley Restaurant Week – specifically to share my experience as a plant-based diner. At the conclusion of HVRW, Liz Johnson – the food editor of The Journal News and the mastermind behind Small Bites – invited me to write a weekly, online vegan column.
I jumped at the chance to write this column because I wanted to demonstrate my joyful, vegan lifestyle. As a vegan I am not deprived. When people ask “You can’t eat beef?” I respond by saying that of course I could eat beef – I simply choose not to because I love cows as much as I love cats and dogs.
(Kayli, a resident at Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary)
I am not at all deprived. The abundance of plant-based foods is incredible. Incredibly delicious and nutritious, in fact. My diet is filled with vegetables, fruits, grains, beans (yep, tofu comes from beans!), nuts and seeds.
As much as I enjoy and love my vegan lifestyle, I know there are other vegans, veg-curious or vegetarians who feel a bit isolated. I wanted to write this column to let them – and all Small Bites readers – know that vegans are indeed here and that there are wonderful places to eat, shop and commune throughout the Lower Hudson Valley.
My time as the “vegan columnist” has come to end, however, because I am relocating to Colorado at the end of the month. This is my last post for I Eat Plants.
After 12 wonderful years in Westchester my husband and I decided to change our lifestyle a bit. He will be coaching triathletes and I plan to expand my vegan lifestyle coaching practice (I coach via Skype and phone, so don’t let those miles get in between you, me, and your new vegan lifestyle!). I have a book with Virginia Messina due out next July, Vegan for Her: The Women’s Guide to Being Healthy and Fit on a Plant-Based Diet (Da Capo Press), and I plan to focus more on my writing, as well as my consulting.
I will miss Westchester. My friends. The beauty of the Hudson Valley. The proximity to New York City. This column.
Yep, writing this column has truly been one of the highlights for me as a Westchester resident. Thank you for inviting me into your kitchen – and your dining out plans! It was an honor. Thank you, Liz Johnson, for allowing me to launch a plant-based column here and for supporting it by printing several of my pieces in The Journal News, for hosting the incredibly fun Twitter chat on pressure cooking and for introducing me to my new friend Seasonal Chef Maria through the oh-so-fun throwdown!
Soon you will meet the new I Eat Plants columnist, my friend Jodie Deignan who blogs at The Picky Vegan. You’re going to love her!
I will leave you with a list of the posts that I wrote for this column and I hope you will refer to them whenever you’re looking for a little vegan inspiration.
I Eat Plants by JL Fields
- Meet blogger JL Fields
- Zitoune in Mamaroneck
- Haven in Pleasantville
- Sweet Grass Grill in Tarrytown
- An interview with Chef Daniel Petrilli of Haven in Pleasantville
- Gingered Asparagus & Leeks
- Vegan Thursday at Whole Foods Market, White Plains
- Turquoise in Larchmont
- The Top 3 Reasons Why I Love My Pressure Cooker
- Creamy Strawberry Salad Dressing
- Asian Temptation in White Plains
- Make delicious homemade vegan butter
- Lentil Hummus
- Green Ice Cream
- Victoria Moran is Taking Vegan to Main Street
- Raw and vegan produce in Rye (and Larchmont!)
- The Veggie Burger at BGR The Burger Joint in Mount Kisco
- Marmite Sweet Potato Chips (Baked or High Raw)
- Small Bites Throwdown: Cucumber and Onion Quinoa Salad from I Eat Plants Columnist JL Fields
- Harry’s Burritos in Larchmont
- Cafe of Love in Mt. Kisco
- I am not a “perfect” vegan
- Coconut-Ginger Infused Black Bean Brownies
- Cook beans in bulk to save time and money
- Orfino’s Restaurant in Briarcliff Manor (Where ordering vegan is “no problem”)
- Quick Chickpea Salad Sandwich
- Try this Creamy Kale Miso Soup at the John Jay Homestead Farm Market Saturday!
- Make your own vegetable broth
- Vegan Seven Layer Salad
- My Favorite Vegan-Friendly Restaurants in the Lower Hudson Valley
- Amrita, a plant-based nutrition bar made in our backyard
I Eat Plants columnist JL Fields is a certified vegan lifestyle coach and educator. She shares plant-based education, recipes and cooking techniques, as well as animal rights information and resources, on the popular blog JL goes Vegan. Her original recipes have been featured on Foodbuzz, BlogHer and Meatless Monday. She is the editor of the community blog Stop Chasing Skinny. JL is the founder and lead consultant for JL Fields Consulting and serves on the board of directors of Our Hen House. Follow her on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Google+.