Some of my best memories are connected directly to food and the social character of having the same food habits with friends and family.
Lunch in amazing Italian restaurants and cooking all together for a family day, gathering with friends and ordering in, offering them that dessert that somehow baked perfectly, watching television shows and sharing favorite recipes.. I have been a vegan for less than a year now and the thing that makes me bitter is not missing my favorite flavors, nor how much easier and less expensive a less healthy lifestyle is. However, when I try to bake for my friends these days, they look at my cupcakes suspiciously, refuse to eat the food we offer them so they don’t take away from us “that expensive cheese that looks weird and tastes funny”. It breaks my heart when they want to offer me something I don’t wish to eat. It’s the socialization over food that I miss the most.
I never realized this before, but, especially in Greece , food is the link of people. Like in the movie ‘My Big Fat Greek Wedding’….”EAT EAT!” and it’s meat , meat, lots of meat! Which, according to many people if you don’t eat you will get sick/ won’t get your nutrients/ you are absolutely out of your mind so eat it right this second/ oh my god you hate the way they made it, etc, etc, This seems to be the over dramatic personality of the average Greek woman.
So, thank you for offering me that amazing mosaic of biscuits and chocolate but I became paranoid after reading all these articles and now I only trust what I make (for the most part). Please don’t get offended, I am certain it is perfect but I don’t want it!
Oh well….try visiting a Greek mom and tell her you don’t want the food she is offering you ( να σας κεράσω κάτι βρε παιδιά!!) . You will break her heart and you will drown in the guilt of it!!
Somehow, besides the occasional teasing of “oh don’t tell me, you don’t eat that either?” and “you eat like my Grandma”, my friends and family have been very understanding and don’t treat me too differently, which is something I am very grateful for.
I sure do miss talking food with them, making food, sharing food and socializing around food without differentiation …
(when are they all going to become gluten- free vegans already?!)