By Niki D'Andrea
“If you don't eat yer meat, you can't have any pudding! How can you have any pudding if you don't eat your meat?”
I love meat. I eat meat every day. Nothing can thwart me. I've had militant vegetarian friends lecture me about cholesterol, send me gory slaughterhouse photos, and give me the whole “meat is murder” spiel. It doesn't matter; my carnivorous lust shall not be moved. I've even had friends grossly describe the contents of my meat while I was eating it, and it didn't make those Slim Jims or Vienna Sausages taste any different to me. Scrapple? Menudo? “Mechanically separated chicken”? Bring it on.
Don't get me wrong -- I love animals. But unless we're talking about cannibalism, I don't think “meat is murder.” It's more like accidental manslaughter. You just can't cut into a cow while it's still alive. And I don't think there's anything righteous about being a strict herbivore, either. I mean, potatoes have eyes. Artichokes have hearts. Broccoli have heads. Think of all the cute little baby tomatoes that die for our salads every year.
The truth is, meat is sexy. In fact, the Latin word for “meat” is carō, also the root of “carnal,” which the Oxford Dictionary of English defines as “relating to physical, especially sexual, needs and activities.” Foods that are considered aphrodisiacs are almost always some sort of meat or seafood. And because I have a high metabolism and a hyperactive thyroid, it's necessary for me to eat foods that are high in protein and amino acids so I don't start looking like an emaciated crackhead (although I often act like one). Beef, lamb, chicken, and fish are all loaded with protein (anywhere from 80 to 120 grams of protein per pound) and contain all of the essential amino acids, as well as high amounts of B vitamins.
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So “Meaty Girl” is going to be all about meat -- some weeks, I'll be reviewing a particular meat dish from a Valley restaurant or deli. Other weeks, I might be sharing beef jerky recipes or attending barbecue contests. I'm open to any and all suggestions, so if you know of some meaty goodness I might be missing, by all means, hit me up and tell me about it. I'm currently looking for a deli that has haggis, so if you know where to find this Scottish specialty, please drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.