Originally Posted by Alenushka
"You could either make one vegan cake for everyone, or maybe only make vegan muffins, etc. (as in, sub something vegan for something non-vegan, so you don't have tons of leftover food)."
Why? Nothing tastes as good as butter. Why would I force myself and other guests to eat vegan food? When I come to vegan house would they serve me butter? Of course not.
I always have one vegan dish at my dinner for sure, i.e salad. And not ,more vegan desserts because I am not not spending hours baking to see people suddenly be butter lovers.
If someone is really a vegan, they will grab a fruit from my fruit basket.
Yes, it is rude to tell people that you are vegan or paleo and then refuse to eat what people made jsut for you and eat thing that are not on "your list" . Rude, rude, rude.
That really depends on the context in which they told you.
Diet comes up in conversation. I will mention that we eat paleo, or occasionally post paleo links/recipes/whatever on facebook. I'm not pushy about it, and generally try to avoid being the one bringing it up because I don't want to be that person... but it comes up sometimes. Unless you're willing to eat absolutely anything, it's going to come up sometimes.
Do I have to, in every single circumstance where it comes up, include the caveat that we eat paleo 99% of the time but, not being gluten-sensitive to the extent that it causes any sort of immediately disabling symptom, we do eat other stuff from time to time and no one should worry about providing a special diet for us on the off chance that we eat at their house?
On the other hand, if I was invited to a party and specifically told the host my dietary restrictions in that context (or had in the past in a similar situation), then yes, it would be rude to pass up the special food they made in favor of something not on my diet. If she's militant enough to demand that all snacks in the classroom be vegan, then she falls into this category and is probably one who should be a little more consistent in her eating.
The "They can just eat the salad" attitude is going to push less strict vegans towards eating the non-vegan food unless the salad is a really hearty salad that's intended to be an actual meal. Salad, without adequate protein and fat, is not a meal.
To put it into less controversial terms... you have a friend who is dieting. She talks frequently about this, and is very proud of her weight loss, and is frankly kind of annoying about it. You make a scrumptious dessert for your guests, but get her nonfat artificially sweetened ice milk because you want to support her weight loss. She LOVES your desserts, and has planned that this party will be her one big splurge in months. Is it rude of her to pass up the ice milk in favor of the other dessert when she had no forewarning that you were going to be doing something different for her? Would it be rude of you, as host, to assume that she wouldn't want the good dessert and only make enough for the other guests?
No one should be expected to eat only what *you* view as second-class food without clear prior communication. (I realize that this is clearly not what you were saying in your original post if you're spending large amounts of money on special vegan food.)
If you know someone has dietary restrictions of some sort, it is polite to ask questions if you're going to be hosting them. If you're the one with dietary restrictions, it is polite to explain what you need even if not directly asked, (including "Oh, don't worry about it - when in Rome and all that") and then stick with that. If the communication doesn't happen, then both sides are partially at fault.
I also agree that there are plenty of ways to inexpensively and considerately accommodate vegan guests.
Edited by ocelotmom - 5/2/13 at 8:44am