Alternative vegetarian & vegan Christmas dinners

I don’t want to lecture or rant.* You’ll do what you want, regardless. But maybe just consider that the seasonal slaughter of turkeys and ducks is not completely necessary? There are some alternative meals you could be enjoying instead.

Scouring Pinterest for some veggie Christmas dinners for this post has been mouth-watering stuff, and actually all the recipes I’ve found seem quite easy. No defrosting the bird in the bath overnight only to find it’s too big for your oven. And what with Sainsbury’s vegan cheeseboard, procuring affordable non-meat and non-diary food stuffs is actually starting to be feasible.

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Here’s my top 5 suggestions for veggie mains that I’ve narrowed it down to. What should I choose?

  1. Beetroot & squash wellington
  2. Squash, chickpea and spinach filo pie
  3. Vegetable, almond & brazil nut roast
  4. Stuffed roasted squash
  5. Chestnut, port & thyme strudel

I’m also hosting a small Christmas party and looking for ideas for veggie canapes and snacks – does anyone have any ideas?

And if all else fails, Yotam Ottelengi will save me from a meaty Christmas.

*But it would be remiss of me not to provide a few Christmas turkey facts for you to consider.

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Canada Heading Towards An Animal Testing Ban

I recently had a debate on WP with someone about the issue of testing cosmetics on animals. Instead of offering logical, unbiased arguments, this person eventually chose to ban my comments from their post, a pretty cowardly and insecure act from someone who claimed I lacked confidence in my position. Luckily, I’m too self-assured and angered by injustice to be silenced.

Peter Dinklage joined the #BeCrueltyFree campaign and has been associated with Cruelty Free International for the last few years.

Canada is the latest nation progressing towards a Cruelty-free ban, which would see an end to testing cosmetic products on animals. The EU brought in a ban in 2013, though many major cosmetic companies allow others to carry out animal tests on their behalf, so that they can sell their products in China, which lags behind other nations in animal welfare on this issue.

Senator Carolyn Stewart Olsen has recently introduced a bill to implement a Cruelty-Free Cosmetics Act, which will not only ban animal testing for cosmetics, but also prohibit the sale of imported products that have been animal-tested in other parts of the world.

Despite viable alternatives, such as artificial human skin, cosmetics are often still tested on animals, in a system that is outdated and unnecessary.

100,000 animals from around the world are blinded, poisoned and killed yearly in cosmetic tests; this includes rats, mice, hamsters, guinea pigs and rabbits.

The advantages of non-animal tests are outlined by the New England Anti-Vivisection Society, and they include:

  • more reliable test results that can be safely applied to humans
  • fewer errors and miscalculations in interpreting data
  • far more cost effective
  • takes a fraction of the time to produce results
  • less hazardous waste created from dead, toxic animals, therefore more environmentally friendly.

If you want ethical products, look for the Leaping Bunny label. Boots and Superdrug offer many excellent cruelty free, inexpensive own brand products.