I must continue to ponder this question. 'Specially after a visit to a local vegan food store to get some lunch. Have you noticed at places like this and Whole Foods that vegan dishes and the various tofu, tempeh and seitan stuff almost always resembles a meat product?
I have been trying to figure this out for a long time. The immediate answer would be obvious..most vegetarians probably were raised eating meat and were used to it for a long time, then for health or ethical reasons they made the decision to switch over. To make the transition and new lifestyle more "palatable" as it were, vegetarian food companies produce their meat substitutes to resemble remnants of one's old eating habits.
And isn't that funny...? I always thought the idea was that you did not LIKE the idea of eating animals, yet almost all commercially prepared vegetarian foods LOOK like animal products.
Various meatless products include "McNugget" style frozen wads, ground fake beef, stuff that looks like sausage and jerky sticks, vegetable protein formed into hamburger style patties, tofu molded to look like a side of chicken. Veggie treats that look like chicken drumsticks. Tofu meals that resemble cooked roasts. Fake corn dogs. Sliced fake meat resembling lunch cut turkey. Dishes are even prepared with meat sauce flavors..BBQ, Teriyaki, etc.
It appears that a alot of vegan foods want to emulate and make you think you are still living the fast food meat filled lifestyle. So many of the products are "junk food meat" style..corn dogs, hot dogs, hamburgers, McNuggets, etc.
Morningstar's fake bacon looks so real they've designed it to have the crispier "meat" parts and "streaks of fat" that run thru it and are actually textured softer.
What is really being said here?
The idea is to imitate almost exactly the very thing that supposedly their customers morally oppose.
Well, it has to be the "lifestyle transition" thing. The fake food must have some sense of familiarity, some sense of variety and fun so you don't feel like a total outsider. After all, what fun would it be if all fake meat foods resembled brown shapeless clumps. Everything has to be marketed to be as appealing as possible.
And for those who are non dairy, non dairy drink products are still referred to as "milk"..soy milk, rice milk, etc. And used the same way reg'lar milk is.
So...what gives man. IS the resemblance merely a psychological crutch or are humans really just meant to eat meat and our food, one way or another has to echo this instinct?