S.J. Sebellin-Ross of Almost Vegetarian: What's in My Fridge?

I'm chatting with food bloggers about their favorite foods and what's in their fridge ...

This week, I interviewed S. J. Sebellin-Ross (who shall remain faceless) of Almost Vegetarian. In her quest to go vegetarian and also please her meat-eating hubby, she developed an almost vegetarian lifestyle. Find out what's in her super-clean fridge (I'm jealous), her guilty meat pleasure, and what dairy she won't buy.


Tell me about your blog.

I wanted to eat healthier; the husband wanted to eat meatier. We compromised and went almost vegetarian. Like a lot of people. So many people, in fact, I decided to write a blog where I have a lot of recipes for really fast, really healthy, really tasty meals because it doesn't matter how healthy it is if it doesn't taste good or it takes too long to make. Plus, tips to help everyone do what I'm doing because everybody's trying to be healthier.

What's in your fridge right now?

Whatever I can find at the farmers' market plus whatever it takes to make that into a meal. Yesterday, for example, I got some gorgeous Swiss chard and garlic at the market, so today I roughly chopped the Swiss chard and garlic and sautéed them with some thyme from my window box. Then I raided the fridge and pantry and cooked some whole wheat pasta and grated some Gruyere, then tossed it all together with some olive oil, put it in a casserole dish, and topped it with more Gruyere and baked it until it was hot and bubbling.

What must you always have in your fridge and can't live without?

Parmigiano-Reggiano and Gruyere and any other cheeses that look good. Shallots, Greek yogurt, tofu, soy milk, tomato paste, fresh lemons and preserved lemons (for a fast lemon pasta), walnut oil for salad dressings, and whatever certified organic fruit and vegetables look good at the farmers' market.

What is the weirdest thing in there?

Three bottles of really fine extra virgin olive oil. Not that olive oil is weird, just that keeping it in the fridge is a bit odd. But someone sent these to me and olive oil is best when it's fresh and kept cool and in a dark place.

What's the most embarrassing thing in there?

Bacon from a local farm. I know the blog name is "almost," but still. All I can say is the husband is far more inclined to eat a vegetable main course if there is a bit of bacon in it.

What's your guilty pleasure food-wise?

Butter. Beyond any concerns I have about the ethical implications of dairy (including what happens to the male offspring), if I kept it in the house, I would bake with it and cook with it and slather it on anything slow enough for me to catch and eat.  I love butter that much. But it's not very healthy (obviously), so I tend not to keep it around. (And yes, I do know cheese has the same ethical implications as other dairy. I'm trying.)

What do you wish was in there?

I said a big jar of Nutella, but the husband (Italian) was horrified that I would even think of putting that in the fridge. So let's say some crème fraiche ... and Nutella in the pantry!

Where is your fave place to shop?

The farmers' market ... it's where food dreams come true. Second favorite -- a good bakery. It's where carb dreams come true ... and I have a lot of those.

Favorite part of the fridge?

The front of the shelves. Anything shoved to the back is destined to be forgotten and die a sad, lonely death.

What's on the outside of your fridge?

A postcard of a painting at the Met, a picture of our cat my husband drew, a walnut vinaigrette recipe I clipped from somewhere, and a William the Blue Hippopotamus magnet my husband also bought me at the Met.

What are you up to now?

I'm trying to build my Twitter following (I've got 4,000 in my cross hairs) because I've got a big announcement coming at the start of August. You'll have to become a Twitter fan to find out (and, hey, thanks!): http://twitter.com/cookingstudent

Would you ever become a vegetarian?

Images (top to bottom): Almost Vegetarian; Almost Vegetarian

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