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All You Can Eat

Trend-setting restaurants, Northwest cookbooks, local food news and the people who make them happen.

November 22, 2010 at 11:00 AM

The carnivore’s dilemma, resolved, one (Mon)day at a time

Like many of us, not every chef, restaurateur or home-cook is willing to give up meat for good. But more are joining the Meatless Monday movement. Add to the list Seattle’s Linda Derschang. Beginning November 29, chefs at her Capitol Hill restaurants Oddfellows Cafe and Smith will roll out a roster of meat-free Monday specials to bolster their carnivore’s card — just in time for you to say, “If I see another piece of leftover turkey, I’m going to turn into a vegetarian!”

Vegetables (like the roasted-beet salad in the foreground, photographed at Smith for this 2008 review) will take center stage on Mondays, though carnivores not yet on the bandwagon may still fork into pork (among other options). [Seattle Times photo/Alan Berner]

To kick-start things on the 29th, Meatless Monday advocate Kim O’Donnel will be on hand at Oddfellows (1525 10th Avenue) from 6 to 8 p.m., signing copies of “The Meat Lover’s Meatless Cookbook”. Kim loves to lift a bone, as she points out in her new book, subtitled “Vegetarian Recipes Carnivores Will Devour.” But she’s making it her mission to help us take to the table — any day of the week — to devour “meaty” recipes like her Shepherd’s Pie with Chard-Lentil Filling and Black Bean Sweet Potato Chili, perfect for a wintry Monday like the one we’ve got today.

Kim O’Donnel (noted for another culinary revolution — one she dubbed a “canvolution”) after an October book-signing at Seattle’s Elliott Bay Book Company.

“What I’ve discovered in the last couple months spent traveling around the country and here in Seattle, is that there are more and more of us in mixed-diet relationships,” said the Seattle-based food writer. “That could be two people falling in love — where she still likes to tear into a chop, while he runs to the hills at the mere sound of it. Or a family with a teenager who woke up one day and said, `I don’t want to eat meat anymore!’ What do you do at the end of the day, at the table, without the cook in the family making three different meals?” Well, you can join the club and ditch the meat on Mondays, insists Kim.

“This idea of taking one day off from meat is connected to being a little more mindful, stepping back and actually taking stock of what we’re eating — not only on a daily basis, but a weekly basis — and doing a mental check-list before we plow into that rack of ribs. Which, by the way, are delicious.”

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