PDA

View Full Version : Hospitality course assignment on the vegan diet



school kid
Sep 15th, 2004, 12:11 AM
hi everyone i am a yr 12 student at darwin high, australia, and for my food and hospitality course i have chosen to do my major assignment on the vegan diet as i find it quite intriguing and have tried it myself. i was wondering if you could possibly help me by briefly answering a few questions...

does being a vegan provide barrier to an enjoyable dining out experience?

by this i mean:

how well do restaurants cater for vegans?

how well do chefs accept being asked to create a vegan meal, if it is not offered on the menu?

and if there are any vegan chefs or chefs that have to undergo training to be able to prepare a totally vegan safe meal?

thank you so much if you are willing to help me, greatly appreciated

TheFirstBus
Sep 15th, 2004, 12:20 AM
It really does depend on where you live to how vegan the menu is, but I have found that alot of major chains don't in my country canada. You can modify meals to suit your diet but there still is restriction. I have never asked a chef most often I ask the waiter whats in things then say to him "I will have the chicken stirfry without the chicken". I am not a trained chef, but I cook all the time there is a huge amount of meals you can make vegan. It doesn't take a huge amount of knowlage.

Artichoke47
Sep 15th, 2004, 12:21 AM
I don't go to omnivorous restaurants; I only go to at least vegetarian, preferably vegan restaurants.

Tofu Monster
Sep 15th, 2004, 12:51 AM
how well do restaurants cater for vegans?

how well do chefs accept being asked to create a vegan meal, if it is not offered on the menu?

and if there are any vegan chefs or chefs that have to undergo training to be able to prepare a totally vegan safe meal?

yo vegan kid. it's great that you are taking an interest in veganism at such a young age.

it depends what type of restaurant you go to and where it is. there are no vegetarian restaurants, let alone vegan ones, round here, so if i want to eat out (very rare) i just do what i do when getting a takeaway, which is to order something that look like it's vegan, and then just explain what i want, to make sure i get it. and i'd try to stick to 'trusted' places as well.

if you order at an indian or chinese establishment, chances are they have something suitable or can adapt something on their menu quite easily. going to a standard steakhouse or something, you might have a problem. last time i did that i had a side salad and chips. (that's english 'chips', not american 'chips' ok school kid? i dunno what the hell you call them in oz.)

i am actually completely rubbish at cooking, but i dare say that a chef has to train towards whatever specialised area of the food industry they are aiming to work in, including vegan. in many ways i think it's harder to cook good vegan food cos you are obviously choosing not to use many ingredients that others would use. unless, of course, it's actually easy and it's just my aforementioned rubbishness at cooking that makes me think it's harder. :o

Hasha
Sep 15th, 2004, 12:52 AM
Since I went vegan (about two months ago), I've only been to Chinese and Indian restaurants. I think Asian restaurants are likely to have vegan options (I haven't had trouble with them yet). I consciously avoid other restaurants. Partly because I really don't feel like asking for a meal that's not on the menu to be created especially for me (so I don't know how chefs would react). Also, I was vegetarian for about 5 years before I turned vegan, and although I could more or less always find a vegetarian option in random restaurants, such meals almost invariably contained cheese and/or eggs. So for now, I'm basically sticking to Asian restaurants. Of course, I'd be happy to go vegetarian/vegan restaurants as well, but I usually go out with omnivore friends. It just feels a lot less conflict-provoking or selfish-sounding to ask them to go to a Chinese place than to ask them to go to a veggie place.

Artichoke47
Sep 15th, 2004, 01:18 AM
I wouldn't say that there are "many ingredients" vegans don't use. In fact, I can count on my fingers the ingredients we wouldn't use and couldn't possibly name all of the fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, and whole grains we WOULD use.

nonemorebrown
Sep 15th, 2004, 02:01 AM
does being a vegan provide barrier to an enjoyable dining out experience?

In the beginning it might, but once you are able to establish which eateries are vegan friendly, than it is pretty smooth sailing from there. Generally speaking, Asian food is a good bet.

Also, I might add, being a vegan has enabled me to seek out and try a much broader variety of foods. When I ate meat, I never took chances on what to eat. I was always eating the same ol' boring food, over and over. Chances are, if I hadn't gone vegan (or even vegetarian for that matter), I never would have tried so many different, delicious foods.

Trendygirl
Sep 15th, 2004, 02:04 AM
I often get in a panic if I am out with people I donít know very well and we go for a meal. You feel really bad if there is nothing to eat and you end up feeling as though you are being really awkward by asking for something that is not on the menu. You often end up being the joke of the night, the one who wonít eat meat or dairy. ĎDo you think your hurting the cows?í or Ďdo potatoes cry when you pull them out of the ground?í Then fits of laughter by everyone but you.

I donít like going to none veggie restaurants so I donít go for many meals as there are not that many restaurants and none in my home town. However on a whole veggie restaurants are pretty good at catering for vegans.

I commend you for trying to be vegan at your age. When I was 13 I tried to become veggie but it didnít last very long. I had no support, veggies were hardly heard of where Iím from and my mum forced me back to eating meat as I was hardly eating anything. Donít let anyone tell you that you have to eat meat. It is not true!

Take care! xx

cast_the_flames
Sep 15th, 2004, 04:01 AM
i've been to all sorts of restaurants since i've been vegan. while i do prefer to go to all veg or very veg friendly restaurants just to take the stress out, i've found most places to be quite accomidating. i remember one particularly nice experience, when i went to a fancy french restaurant, which would be the antithesis of veganism to most people, and had the chef prepare me a beautiful vegan meal. we called ahead, which was easy enough since we needed a reservation, and made sure they understood my dietary constraints. i got an entirely special meal, that the chef just cooked up and presented to me. it was very nice indeed :)

i think that if i were a true chef, i would like the challenge that a vegan meal might present me, if i were not used to it. chain restaurants or places with short order cooks probably wouldn't appreciate it as much, but i tend not to go to fast food sorts of places.

eve
Sep 15th, 2004, 06:17 AM
i am a yr 12 student at darwin high, australia, and for my food and hospitality course i have chosen to do my major assignment on the vegan diet as i find it quite intriguing and have tried it myself. i was wondering if you could possibly help me by briefly answering a few questions...
does being a vegan provide barrier to an enjoyable dining out experience?
how well do chefs accept being asked to create a vegan meal, if it is not offered on the menu?
and if there are any vegan chefs or chefs that have to undergo training to be able to prepare a totally vegan safe meal?

Hi, I'm in a Qld country town where there are no vegan restaurants, so being a vegan is a barrier to an enjoyable dining out experience. Chefs around here don't seem to understand the concept at all, and there isn't a special training for preparation of a totally vegan meal. In any event, I prefer my own cooking - I'm confident in the cleanliness of my own kitchen, and I know what goes into a dish. Who knows whether a 'chef' will put in something non-vegan without revealing? I have eaten vegan food on the odd occasion of a visit to Brisbane or to Sydney, in order to share a meal with vegan friends.
All the best in your career. :)

negavert
Sep 15th, 2004, 09:55 AM
I seem to be in the opposite end; I'm quite lucky to live where I do--there are many places that have vegan options and a few places that are all-vegan. Such is the joys of living on the West Coast. I've found it to be much easier to be vegan here than when I lived in the Midwest. I'm not suire why or how that developed, but I'm not complaining or looking a gift horse in the mouth, so to speak...

Left of Centre
Sep 15th, 2004, 11:55 AM
1.does being a vegan provide barrier to an enjoyable dining out experience?

2.how well do restaurants cater for vegans?

3.how well do chefs accept being asked to create a vegan meal, if it is not offered on the menu?

4.and if there are any vegan chefs or chefs that have to undergo training to be able to prepare a totally vegan safe meal?



1. It does make a barrier, but it depends on where you live, who you're with and what kind of meal you want (snack, full three course job, chips!)

2. Some resturants in the UK are utter crap - everything on the menu contains animals in someway - some of these could be vegan (or at the least veggie) if they didn't use stupid things like egg pasta instead of plain pasta! Others have veggie options that could easily be vegan if only they didn't smother everything in cheese sauce! Most frustrating. In some countries we've been to, they didn't understand what vegan meant, but we've even had a vegan spaghetti bolognese made for us in Portugal - despite the language barrier!

3. The ones we've encountered have mostly been great. Of course if we're going to a function or something, we have to phone in advance and tell them, and they usually come up with a suitable dish. Others just do a bog standard 'whatever they can find in the kitchen that's not dead' kind of thing, and not put much thought into it at all.

4. Other than chefs in vegan resturants you mean?? Sorry, I haven't a clue. I would have thought that any trained chef would be able to turn their hand to most things, but I guess they all have their specialities.

On the whole, if somewhere can't cater for us, we go elsewhere! We've been vegan for a long time, so it's generally easier for us than for someone who's new to it. :)

uww27225
Sep 15th, 2004, 01:23 PM
I live in the US Midwest and I haven't had much trouble dining out. Obvilously the restaurants the have special vegan dishes are the easiest, but I've had pleasant dining experiences at chain restaurants even. I ate at Chili's a few weeks ago and my server was extremely accomodating and so was the kitchen. I initially ordered a veggie item without cheese and the kitchen was informed enough to tell me that not only do they add cheese but that there was cheese already in the tortilla. They made me a special fajita pita instead!

Last weekend I stood up in a wedding that was in northern Wisconsin (aka hunter's paradise). I called the caterer ahead of time and she made me a larger baked potato, a larger salad, and made sure they didn't put any butter on the corn.

While it may be uncomfortable for some (including myself) to ask for special orders, I find if you ask politely and don't seem condescending, that places are very willing to accomadate you.

Good luck with the project. Let me know if you need a US subject to come to Australia! :D lol

wuggy
Sep 15th, 2004, 08:13 PM
I am lucky as there is a great Vegan cafe and lending library about 4 miles away.
Also, I have eaten in a Pizza restaurant before, I asked for a plain base with tomatoes, herbs and vegetables which was edible.
Also, I used to live near a lovely Public House which was known for the food. If I rang ahead, the chef loved to make me a Vegan meal, he found it a challenge to make it really tasty and enjoyable.
On the whole, though, I am much happier eating at home, and I do feel that being Vegan can be a barrier.

Skajen
Jun 26th, 2006, 02:13 PM
does being a vegan provide barrier to an enjoyable dining out experience?

it can do, i live in England and english pub food is a nightmare, italian tends to be ok- as dough is sometimes ok as is some spaghetti, chinese and indian is easy! Unless the restuarant is organic, fair trade or vegetarian they don't tend to provide a vegan option and you just have to hope the veggie option isn't lasagne or goats cheese tart as it is 90% of the time! i have mixed experiences, some places are fantastic and really go out of their way- if the chef is talented they don't mind, but as i say pub food is dreadful, they make no effort at all.

hope that helps and isn't too confusing!

princessemma
Jun 26th, 2006, 02:32 PM
I live in the UK and the most recent place I ate at was a vegetarian resturant with lots of vegan options.

My husband and I are members of our local veggies and vegans group and every six months or so we all go out for a meal at a 'non-veggie' resturant we choose this for several reasons (apart from the obvious reason to eat out!)

1. Safety in numbers. Many places are more likely to make an effort for a group rather than a single person or couple eating out.

2. It makes chiefs think about how to cook vegan.

3. It shows local buisnesses that there are people out there who want vegan options.

4. It gets publicity for both our group and the resturant.

As others have already mentioned the trouble with resturants in the UK is they are heavily dependant on cheese for their vegetarian options.
Indian places can be good but you do have to request that they only use coconut cream not dairy. Thai are good if you request no fish sauce. I think the worst places are the ones where everything is ready made and then heated up but I wouldn't want to eat somewhere like that anyway.

Skajen
Jun 26th, 2006, 02:34 PM
every six months or so we all go out for a meal at a 'non-veggie' resturant we choose this for several reasons (apart from the obvious reason to eat out!).

what a brilliant idea, good on you :)