Why some vegetarians believe in ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’

Refried beans can be the ultimate mystery dish.

​Chef and culinary consultant Bonnie Winston can take the tiniest taste of long-simmered beans in a Mexican restaurant and tell you if they’ve been cooked in lard. “If the beans are really flavorful,” she says, “there’s probably lard in there.”

I have several vegetarian friends in Kansas City who take a “don’t ask, don’t tell” approach to some seemingly meat-free dishes. It’s easier to pretend the beans in a Mexican restaurant are lard-free, particularly when dining with a group of meat-eating friends. 

Categories: Dining, Food & Drink