What’s the deal with Meatless Mondays?

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You may have heard of the Meatless Mondays food trend. So, what’s the big deal? And why does everyone seem to be doing it? While the idea of Meatless Monday has been gaining a lot of traction lately, it is actually not a new idea or concept at all. Meatless Mondays is global movement with a simple message: once a week, cut the meat. It is a non-profit initiative that was launched in 2003, working in collaboration with the Center for a Livable Future (CLF) at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

On average, we eat about 1/2 pound of meat per day (that’s 180 pounds per year). Eating so much meat can be damaging to your health, as diets that are high in red and processed meats are linked to cancer, heart disease, and stroke. So many people eating so much meat also affects our planet: the meat industry produces 1/5 of man-made green house gases and accelerates climate change. If we cut back on our meat intake at least once a week, we will be helping ourselves and our planet.

And just because you’re participating in meatless Mondays doesn’t mean the meals  or snacks that start your week need to be boring or basic. Here’s a recipe for Cauliflower Buffalo Wings to get you started:

Let’s face it, half the appeal of buffalo wings is the spicy, vinegary, garlicky sauce. So why not give veggies the same treatment? Here, cauliflower florets are doused in hot sauce and breaded with Panko bread crumbs, which stay crispy and help to deliver the same crunch you’d expect from a chicken wing

  • 1 small head cauliflower, separated into bite-sized florets (about 5 cups)
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 5 tablespoons hot sauce, such as Frank’s Hot Sauce
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • salt and ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups Panko crumbs

Preheat the oven to 375° F and prepare a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. In a small bowl, add the melted butter, hot sauce, white vinegar, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Stir to combine.

Place the Panko crumbs in a small, shallow bowl. Use one hand to dip the cauliflower florets into the sauce then drop it into the crumbs. Using the other hand, coat the floret well with the crumbs and place it on the baking sheet.

Once all of the florets are coated, use a very light spray of cooking oil to coat the tops. This will help hold the crumbs in place and help them brown. Place the baking sheet into the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the crumbs are golden brown.

Serve hot with Ranch or Blue Cheese dressing, carrot and celery sticks.

Lauren lives in OB with her French bulldog, Elvis Presley. She loves laughter and the great outdoors. You can contact her at [email protected].

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