I've commented a number of times about how certain people make a big deal of the fact that Christine and I became vegetarians a couple of years ago. But I maintain (and always will) that it's not anywhere near the huge lifestyle change that some make it out to be. Not to take a shot at myself, but if I can do it...
If you spend even a minimal amount of time looking into it, you'll find that there are a number of substitutes that are available to kill the meat craving at first, until you no longer really have a desire for it. That's been my (our) experience, anyway. Think of them as "Nicorette for beef". ;-)
Now in truth, there aren't substitutes for everything. I have yet to come across a quality substitute for ribs, for example. And I had yet to come across a quality substitute for smoked meat, but now that one's been taken care of.
Christine spotted "Smoked Wheat" from the above folks at a Loeb store near our place and decided to give it a try. Click on the logo for more details.
We were pretty pleased with it. Was it identical to the real thing? No. Like many fake meats, the most glaring difference is in the texture (in my opinion, anyway).
Does it simulate the real thing well enough to pass? Absolutely. Flavour-wise, it's close enough. And now that it's a couple of hours in my past, I'm enjoying the wicked thirst you get after a little while after eating a smoked meat sandwhich. Now THAT'S substitutin'!! It's also kind of odd because water is the first ingredient...
We'll have it again before long, and likely try "Roast Wheat" at some point. And hopefully they both look close enough to the real thing to others that I can have it in a sandwich at work or with friends and not have someone tell me for the umpteenth time "Oh, that's right! You don't eat meat at all?? I don't know how you do it..."
Here's the nutritional content from a handy little site called thedailyplate.com. And while looking up some information about smoked wheat, I came across this list of Top Five Vegetarian Sandwiches. Smoked Wheat made the #3 position, so I might just have to try the other four some day.