A man stir-fries pork into a tofu dish for an office potluck, but doesn’t label it. Vegetarians are angry when they find out. A user asked, Am I wrong for putting meat in a tofu dish?


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There is a potluck.

The Original Poster (OP) brought a mapu tofu dish stir-fried with minced pork, ginger, and spring onions. Similar to tofu but not spicy.


What Happened Next?

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OP says, “Everything was fine except when someone asked me if my dish was halal; I said no, it has pork.”


What Did Jen Do?

bbq sauce
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That’s when Jen overheard and freaked out that she ate meat. And many other vegetarians ate my dish, assuming it was vegetarian.


What Did People Tell OP?

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For the rest of the party, OP had so many people(including non-vegetarians) tell him he was a jerk for putting meat in a vegetarian dish.

OP says, “But this dish I grew up with, tofu is just an ingredient, not strictly a meat substitute. Also, no one asked me if my dish was vegetarian.”


What Does OP Want To Know?

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OP wants to know if he is a jerk or if people are overreacting.

He also goes on to add a clarification. He says, “Since so many people are asking. Nothing was labeled.

I just left the dish on the buffet table along with the rest of the dishes. There were many other meat dishes. About 20 people were at the party; 4 were vegetarian. No one asked about my dish except for the person asking if it was halal.”


What Do Others Have To Say?

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“They assumed it was a vegetarian dish because they have a weird misconception that tofu exists only for vegetarians. That they didn’t bother to ask is on them.

Not wrong”


Cannot Blame You

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“Absolutely! I’m a vegetarian and made the mistake of not asking when I ordered a tofu dish from a very traditional Chinese restaurant.

The menu was predominantly in a Chinese dialect, with only the briefest description in English. I did not blame the restaurant – I just ordered something different and paid for both dishes. It’s not anyone else’s fault that I didn’t ask first.”


It’s Common 

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“You are not a jerk. Chinese tofu dishes (and other vegetable dishes!) often contain pork to add flavor. It’s not your fault they didn’t know that, and I’d bet they’ve accidentally eaten pork at Chinese food places since they didn’t.”


Mapo Tofu Usually Comes With Meat

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“Not a jerk. Mapo tofu usually comes with meat. The person that asked if it was halal was responsible. The vegetarians that ate it were not responsible.

I live in a highly health-conscious area and know several people w/ allergies, so I’ve started to list ingredients with dishes I bring to potlucks.”


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