I really like Anthony Bourdain. Anthony Bourdain loathes vegetarians. And don't even bring up vegans. Here's a famous, but by no means isolated, example of his philosophy, taken from Kitchen Confidential:
Vegetarians, and their Hezbollah-like splinter faction, the vegans, are a persistent irritant to any chef worth a damn. To me, life without veal stock, pork fat, sausage, organ meat, demi-glace, or even stinky cheese is a life not worth living. Vegetarians are the enemy of everything good and decent in the human spirit, and an affront to all I stand for, the pure enjoyment of food.
A new blog, Hezbollah Tofu, apparently takes serious issue with Mr. Bourdain's claims, so much so that they are dissecting the recipes from his restaurant Les Halles and offering "vastly improved, veganized versions of your masturbatory, blood-oozing recipes." This is the Achille's Heel of vegan rhetoric. No. Stop. Drop the "vastly improved" tripe (see what I did there?) and I'll agree with your premise. Defend your decision to be vegan for all the valid reasons. There are many. But do not expect me to believe that mignon de porc made out of seitan, tofu and unicorn farts will taste better than one made out of pork. That, as the French say, is goddamn retarded.
I firmly subscribe to the "to each his own" philosophy of diet; if you don't want to eat pork, don't eat pork. If you want to be vegan, be vegan. Your pointless little exercise in self-denial does not, however, give you the power to change the facts. If you want to argue about how the agribusiness industry is morally corrupt and abusive to animals, fine. You are correct. You win the moral high ground. I yield the point. But don't expect me to pretend that your vegan "substitutions" in non-vegan cooking are improvements. It demeans us both.
Non-vegans will recognize the following scenario all too well. Vegan Friend tells us how f'n amazing he or she is at vegan baking. We express doubt. VF insists on making a vegan cornucopia to shatter our skepticism. VF hands us a piece of vegan "cake" which purports to destroy any suggestion that vegan baking is not orgasmically delicious. We take one bite, chew for 3 minutes on something that tastes like a fucking carpet sample, and silently pray for death.
You've only deluded yourself. Don't make the mistake of thinking we operate under a similar delusion.
Don't get me wrong, I can enjoy vegan food. My favorite selections are things that simply are vegan. No "adjustments" required. Lots of Indian recipes, for example, contain no animal products. Ditto many Cantonese, Mediterranean, and African dishes. But, like Icarus, your pride is your flaw. You start "fixing" our non-vegan fare. Note the website's "creme brulee" recipe. Whatever this is, whatever it tastes like, IT IS NOT CREME BRULEE. Do not call it that. Do not pretend like it is the same thing with different ingredients. It. Is. Not. Creme. Brulee. It is a blob of tofu with ersatz caramel sauce and a 6-hour aftertaste, and it sounds approximately as appetizing as fellating an incontinent bear. But if I'm wrong and it's delicious IT'S STILL NOT CREME BRULEE.
The world is not biased against your food. WE are not the ones with an agenda that excludes food based on principle. That's you. Most people have no politics in their diet. If vegan substitutes for non-vegan menu items tasted better, people would eat them. Alas, that is not the case. We don't dislike it because we're small-minded, as you like to assert smugly.
We dislike it because it tastes like a sack of buttholes.
So here's 2 cents' advice to Hezbollah Tofu and the vegans: try to win me over on the politics and you might succeed. Try to win me over on the many cuisines around the world that omit animal products.
That might work too. Don't try to win me over with fermented soy pinch-hitting for pork. Don't talk about how you've "fixed" cuisines heavily rooted in the use of blood, meat, and dairy. That just makes you look stupid. It makes you easy to tune out, and your message ends up confined to small communities of already-converted, true-believer vegans. And that is why websites like Hezbollah Tofu crack me up. Apparently you believe that if you constantly tell one another how delicious all of this unfortunate shit is, you might actually begin to believe it one day as you shovel another lump of Tofurkey at your joyless, long-suffering tastebuds.
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PS: We all know that you eat cheese and yogurt when you're certain that your Fellow Travelers won't find out. The loose lips of our vegan friends have sunk that ship.