Monday, February 3, 2014

Meatless Eye Candy

We have all heard the expression, "don't judge a book by it's cover". But, as it turns out, this motto may not apply to the food we eat. Studies have shown that people truly "eat with their eyes first". Meaning the way we perceive the food we eat, is effected by how it looks. A study done by Griffith University in
Australia*, found that when participants were shown foods with complementary colors, such as green and red, they rated the food to be more visually appealing, citing it looked more vibrant. And in some cases, they even ranked food higher in taste based on its visual appeal, as well.

If you think about it, sight is one of the first sensory organs we use when experiencing food. We may smell it before we see it, or hear the process before it reaches the table, but right before we decide to take a bite, it's how the food looks on the plate that determines if we choose to eat it or not.

This is why sites like Pinterest and Foodgawker are so popular. They are not only a great way to share recipes and cooking tips, but also a way for viewers to see what a possible recipe looks like before they actually try it out.

It is important when making changes to your diet that these changes do not make you feel deprived, or that you are missing out. It is often helpful when taking out an element out of a dish, to replace it with something else. If you are concerned that swapping out meat from your meals might not make you feel as satisfied, there are other ways to prepare your food that emphasize other aspects flavors and engage your other senses, so that you won't even notice the meat is missing!

There are many techniques to do this from adding more herbs and spices, to using different techniques like roasting and braising. One very easy technique that doesn't take hardly any effort is making your food look pretty! No one will even notice your food is meat-free, if it looks delicious and tempting! So look below for some delicious (looking and tasting) food eye candy for you to visually devour..

Taken from Pinterest (Searched Meatless Monday Tag)

Sweet Potato burger with avocado

Summer Squash and Brie Sandwiches

Quinoa Tofu Rolls

Taken from Foodgawker (Searched Meatless Monday Tag)

Kale, Roasted Red Pepper and Feta Frittata

Taken from Meatless Monday's Instagram

Meatless Tacos

General Tao's Tofu Chick'n

 Want to get more food #eyecandy? IC Dining now has a Pinterest account! Follow us to see our boards to get inspired about Meatless Monday, as well as Health and Nutrition, WasteLESS, Sustainability, Delectable Delights, and much more.

There are lots of great tips and food ideas on our Pinterest page, too. One of my favorites is the visual guide to how to eat seasonally (shown left).

Local Pork "Porchetta" Sandwich from Purdy and Sons!
And, we also have an Instagram account! We post on Meatless Monday, as well as other tasty dishes and event that we think you should try, like Thai Tuesdays at Towers at Fresh Food Market, or 'Tis the Season Tuesday at Food Lab in Terraces (shown below). Feel free to add a filter to your food, and add it to our instagram account by tagging us with the name, @icdining.

 Happy food gawkin' and Meatless Monday!

(*Study cited:
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