A hermit friend who lives in Germany e-mailed this painting, “Der Eremit Hühnchen bratend” [The Hermit Roasting Chicken] by von Carl Spitweg. No, it could not be The Joyful Hermit because I don’t roast, steam, broil, fry, simmer or grill chicken. In truth, I rarely prepare meats, although I did years ago. [Fact: If an Indian priest accepts a hermitage dinner invitation, I will prepare Goan Chicken Curry. He says he favors it.]
I have nothing against eating meat and do so if am a guest being served. I stopped eating meat years back: financial constraints. However, I prepared meats for my growing children–but bargain picks, lean, and stretch-tucked into casseroles and soups.
When my son was on reduce-cost lunches in high school and worked the cafeteria line, women workers took pity by giving him extra servings. He knew to eat meat any chance he could get it. On rare occasion, a lone steak (sale-priced) greeted him from his dinner plate.
The Joyful Hermit saved more than pocket change for kids’ college expenses; plus none of us were plump like the hermit in the painting. Now my system is simply not geared to meat, especially not red meat. Red meats increase inflammation. My constant pain says no thanks. I eat fish on occasion. A $1 can of tuna makes a salad, divided: two meals.
I exist quite well on other proteins. I include eggs; a friend who knows all about nutrition (has a degree) says eggs are complete proteins. In the past year I started using beef and chicken broth. Another friend (who knows about such things) says that drinking or souping with beef or chicken bone broth is good for nerve sheathing.
In another post I’ll share a delicious meal that turned into three meals (fine for me since I live in solitude). Each meal averaged $1.00, but if really hungry I ate 35-cents worth of something more. Stay tuned for The Joyful Hermit’s Cheap Eats.