When non-vegans cook for vegans
For a while now, I've been meaning to get in touch with some of the lovely people that I'm going to talk about in this article. I'm not sure what's stopped me, but I'm glad I waited because I think it's worthy of an article.
It's all about non-vegans (mostly meat-eaters) cooking for vegans.
Do they 'get' me? Should I trust they'll do what's needed?
I'm sure that at one point or another, many of us have thought about whether the people cooking for us will take care to ensure the food isn't contaminated with non-vegan items.
Then, of course, comes the internal debate about whether to mention it or trust that they'll respect our food choices or the needs that are driven by intolerances or allergies.
This would apply to homecooked meals, eating out, buying something readymade to takeaway and so on.
A few positive experiences
We went to a barbeque and my uncle was making Pau Bhaji, which involved putting butter on bread rolls and sauteing them. Before doing the batch using a vegan spread, he washed the pan. Nobody had to ask him to do it. In fact, someone even said it wasn't necessary but he said it was.
At the same barbeque, my sister-in-law's partner was barbequing some corn on the cob. Some of them were coated with butter and others were not. He was about to turn them over and then suggested that someone get a separate utensil to turn the vegan ones over. He also made sure they were away from the non-vegan ones so that the butter didn't melt and spread on the vegan ones.
When we first went vegan, a member of the family asked if we needed to bring our pans to his house when he made food for us, because his pans would have been used for non-vegan foods. We didn't buy new pans when we shifted from vegetarian to vegan, so I was happy to use any pans, as long as they were washed and clean. However, I do know of some vegetarians who won't eat something that's made using pans that has had meat cooked in them, so I guess the reply if asked something like this, would vary from person to person.
My aunt was making two batches of Indian tea; vegan and non-vegan. She was about to use the spoon that she'd used to mix the tea with dairy in it, to stir the vegan tea, but she stopped in her tracks and got a new spoon.
My Mum was making Rotli (also known as Roti and Chapati) for a group of people. She made sure that she put the ones with ghee spread on top of them, in a different plate to the ones that had a vegan margarine on them.
My brother-in-law is very considerate about these things. I recall that we all went out and got some Bubble Tea. We all wanted to try each others' tea, but because my brother-in-law had ordered a non-vegan tea, he got a different straw and used that to taste my tea, so that he didn't contaminate my straw with anything non-vegan. He's done that with things that you'd have to take a bite out of too. So if we had all ordered burgers, and he wanted to try ours, he wouldn't bite it if he'd eaten something that wasn't vegan, but rather he'd use a knife to cut a piece off.
I feel blessed to have such considerate and understanding friends and family members. My wish for you is that you have the same. If not, maybe it's worth sharing this article to help make others aware of what matters to you, if any of the above rings true as ideal for you.