Tag Archives: vegetarian

Lust for Leaf | Alex Brown & Evan George

Is it love or lust? I guess you’ll just have to find out.


TITLE: Lust For Leaf
AUTHOR: Alex Brown & Evan George
PUBLISHER: Da Capo Press (Lifelong)
CUISINE: Vegan/Vegetarian

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FEATURED INGREDIENT: Kale or borecole (Brassica oleracea Acephala Group) is aImage by: Tuscanycious | CLICK FOR DETAILS vegetable with green or purple leaves, in which the central leaves do not form a head. It is considered to be closer to wild cabbage than most domesticated forms.

The species Brassica oleracea contains a wide array of vegetables, including broccoli, cauliflower, collard greens, and brussels sprouts. The cultivar group Acephala also includes spring greens and collard greens, which are extremely similar genetically. [Wikipedia]

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It’s a nice size. Not giant or overwhelming. I like the fact that it’s a hard cover book. Nice and durable. Great food images by Aaron Farley throughout the book. I love the TOC that’s laid out like a Food Pyramid. That’s different. It seems like it’s just as much about people enjoying food as the food itself. That’s a little bit of a switch. Obviously, most cookbooks tend to lean heavily on ingredients and technique rather than the enjoyment of the finished dish. This book just looks like FUN!

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WHAT YOU’LL FIND INSIDE (aka Table of Contents)

Taco Zone
Wild Grub
Pizza Pool Party
BBQ Mosh Pit

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Having some accompaniment to your cooking or meal is an outstanding idea. Making that process all the easier, the Hot Knives guys tell you EXACTLY what you should be listening too. Here is Eggplant Crasserole (P. 48). I only wish I could give you a taste of the La Chouffe, Houblon that goes along with it!

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THE BEST OF THE BOOK (Our Favorite Recipes)

Mushroom Ceviche Blackened Okra Gratin
Elote al Echo Parque Artichoke Hummus
Backpack Bahn Mi Icey Hot Sorbet
Pea Pod Pesto Stonefruit and Strawberries
Awesome Blossoms Weed Dip

The name of this dish alone is reason enough to mention it here, Junk Food Potato Salad (P. 64). The use of corn chips as an ingredient rates high with me. Here’s another. Corn Porn (P. 17). There’s a theme at work here. This time Fritos makes this recipe shine. And, while we’re on a corn themed run, how about, Popcorn – 5 Kinds! (P. 35-36). Everybody loves a great bowl of popcorn. Unless you have a medical exception. Then you still probably love it, but, you just can’t scratch the itch. These five varieties are all exploding with flavor and easy to make. Cue up your favorite flick!

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This is typically a fun part of the post. And, this one is more fun than most. This is where the Lust for Leaf: Vegetarian Noshes, Bashes, and Everyday Great Eats--The Hot Knives Wayauthor’s REAL personality shows through. I love the fact that each recipe comes equipped with it’s very own soundtrack and beverage suggestions. A great way to expose yourself to new music and new brews. There is an extensive and wide ranging beer list towards the back of the book. Also there is a list of the songs included in the recipes. All of the vegan dishes are clearly marked with a V for easy ID.

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This isn’t your typical vegan/veg cookbook. It’s fun! Not pretentious, stuffy or preachy like so many of these can be. The book itself is easy to use and contains enough interesting dishes to keep you occupied for some time to come. There are lots of easy to obtain ingredients. Again, something that so many cookbooks of this cuisine style ignore. Hey, we have to be able to get the stuff to make the food! Loaded with colorful images and some interesting asides.

Culinary Expertise 6.0
1= Boiling Water (novice) 10= Liquid Nitrogen (expert)


Hot Knives Website
Lust For Leaf – Da Capo Publisher Page
Video Photo Shoot – Lust For Leaf


GIVEAWAY I’ve got one extra copy of Lust For Leaf to giveaway. CLICK HERE, send us an email and if you’re first, it’s your. Just that easy…

30 Minutes Vegan’s Taste of Europe | Mark Reinfeld


Can meatless versions of European classics measure up?

The 30-Minute Vegan's Taste of Europe: 150 Plant-Based Makeovers of Classics from France, Italy, Spain . . . and Beyond

TITLE: The 30 Minute Vegan’s Taste of Europe
AUTHOR: Mark Reinfeld
PUBLISHER: Da Capo Lifelong

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Featured Ingredient: Tempeh
Tempeh (/ˈtɛmpeɪ/; Javanese: témpé, IPA: [tempe]), is a traditional soy product originallySliced tempeh - By FotoosVanRobin from Netherlands (Tempe) [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons from Indonesia. It is made by a natural culturing and controlled fermentation process that binds soybeans into a cake form, similar to a very firm vegetarian burger patty. Tempeh is unique among major traditional soy foods in that it is the only one that did not originate in the Sinosphere. [Wikipedia]

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First Impressions
If you’re looking for a nice well rounded assortment of vegan dishes this cookbook will satisfy that. Like the covers says, it contains “Plant based makeovers of classics”. There is a center insert of color images by Fawne Frailey and Sebastian Romero Sea Light Studios. The paper stock is a nice, soft off white that is easy on the eyes and great to page through. This is a nice everyday vegan cookbook. It has dishes you could make for dinner seven nights a week.

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What You’ll Find Inside (aka Table of Contents)
Spain and Portugal
United Kingdom and Ireland
Europe Fusion

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Roam around the world…

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The Best of the Book (Our Favorite Recipes)

Pommes Frites French Onion Soup
Quiche Monet Empanadas
Irish Stew Yorkshire Pudding
Currant Scones Beer Soup
Potato Pierogi Swiss Chocolate Fondue


I love Greek food, so the Tzatzaki (p.162) and the Spanikopita Triangles (p.173) were both big hits with me. You can use that Tzatzaki sauce on just about everything from salad to corn flakes as far as I’m concerned. The Spaetzle Noodles (p.195) is another winner. I have a spaetzle maker (two actually) and I’m always looking for a reason to break it out. Also, the Chickpeas and Roasted Garlic (p.110) is a mouthwatering side dish. It has 15 to 20 cloves of garlic in it, so it has to be amazing!

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Special Features
The 30-Minute Vegan's Taste of Europe: 150 Plant-Based Makeovers of Classics from France, Italy, Spain . . . and BeyondMany of the recipes are annotated with special symbols to help you make cooking decisions. These symbols indicate cooking times and ease of preparation. It’s a nice touch. In the table of contents, the recipe names and page numbers are listed under the chapter names. I LOVE this type of formatting. If you’ve read any of my previous reviews, you know that feature always rates high with me. Making cookbooks easy to use, there’s a novel idea! Also, as you would expect with any vegan/vegetarian cookbook, there is an extensive section on preparation basics contained in the appendix. As is a metric conversion chart. Hey, it’s taste of EUROPE here, so I guess it makes sense. There is also a great list of additional reading and some super helpful online resources. If you’re looking to expand your knowledge of vegan cuisine there is a lot to keep you busy.

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Mark Reinfeld does a nice job on his “plant based makeover”. These are recipes that you could use again and again. They are relatively easy to make, so it would be a fairly good cookbook for the vegan beginner. The once sparse space of vegan cookbooks is starting to fill up fast. The 30 Minute Vegan’s Taste of Europe fills the vegan international cuisine void nicely. If you’ve been hunting for that meatless version of your favorite French dish, you can stop looking. The Seitan Bourguignon (p.84) is now at your fingertips.

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Culinary Expertise 5.0
1= Boiling Water (novice) 10= Liquid Nitrogen (expert)

The 30-Minute Vegan's Taste of Europe: 150 Plant-Based Makeovers of Classics from France, Italy, Spain . . . and Beyond

How would you like to be a cookbook insider? Of course you would. Included with every cookbook that a publisher sends out for review are publicity notes. Click below to view the notes from The 30 Minute Vegan’s Taste of Europe. Have fun being on the inside for a change.

The 30 Minute Vegan’s Taste of Europe – Publicity Notes

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Resources, Links and Press
Vegan Fusion Website
Video: Eating Live: An Introduction to Live Food Cuisine
Mark Reinfeld on vegan.com
Follow Mark Reinfeld on Twitter

Yellow Rice, That’s Mighty Nice


A recipe journey ends in an unexpected place.

Basmati Rice

I have a friend who owns a great Indian restaurant in Sarasota Florida. It’s the kind of place that locals like to hang out. It’s a place where the food says a lot about the people who own it. Warm, comforting, welcoming. It’s an easy place to love.

They have a rice dish on their menu, Cranberry Cashew Pilaf. It’s described as “a rice concoction of sautéed onions, dried cranberries and cashew nuts.” What the description fails to mention is the addictive nature of the dish. At least for my wife. She’s wild about it.

Unfortunately for her, the recipe is a highly guarded secret. It seems a little silly. It’s not as if my non-cooking wife is going to attempt to turn our house into an Indian restaurant. Although, I’ll admit, I wouldn’t mind having that food around all the time.

These days you can find just about any recipe you want on the internet. From Thomas Keller’s famous Oysters and Pearls to a thousand world class meatloaf recipes that any grandmother would be proud of. It’s all there. Well, almost all of it.

A few weeks back we reviewed Bryant Terry’s new cookbook, The Inspired Vegan. Little did I know that contained in the pages would be the rice dish that I had been searching for. Bryant calls it, Yellow Basmati Rice. But, that title didn’t tell the whole story.

I made Bryant’s recipe as part of my cookbook review. One taste told me that I was one step (and two ingredients) away from a breakthrough. So, without further adieu…

Yellow Basmati Rice with Cranberries and Cashews

1 cup basmati rice (soaked overnight in water)
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 cup onions, diced finely
1/2 tsp. coarse ground sea salt
1 tsp. turmeric
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup cashew pieces

Drain soaked rice into a colander. NOTE: I have made this dish twice. The first time through I didn’t have time to soak the rice overnight. So, I just rinsed it well in a fine mesh strainer. This method produced a finished product closer to what I was looking for. Soaking the rice gave it a distinct barley-like texture and feel when cooked. If you like that, then soak away.

In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil over low heat. Add the onions and the salt. Sauté until well caramelized. About 10 to 15 minutes. I actually had to turn the heat up to medium to get the onions to caramelize in that amount of time. When the onions are browned add the turmeric. Stir for about 30 seconds to fully incorporate. Add the rice and cook for about 2 minutes stirring often. The mixture should start to smell nutty and all of the water should be absorbed.

Add 2 1/4 cups of water. Bring to a boil. Turn heat to low and cover. Cook for 50 minutes.

When rice is cooked. Remove from heat, add cranberries and cashews. Cover and set aside for about 10 minutes. Fluff with fork and serve.

Serves 4
Recipe adapted Yellow Rice, Bryant Terry, The Inspired Vegan. Da Capo Lifelong Books © 2012.

Here’s what you’ll end up with. Looks amazing, right?


Here’s the thing. Having the recipe is great. Make no mistake about it. Does it replace the experience you get dining at the restaurant? Not even close. So, I’m pretty certain that I’ll continue to take advantage of the fantastic food and hospitality that only the REAL thing can offer.

FYI – The restaurant that makes that delicious Cranberry Cashew Pilaf is Chutney’s, Etc. If you click here, you can drool over their menu online. If you’re in the area, be sure and stop on by and say hello. You’ll be happy you did.

Looking for a copy of Bryant Terry’s The Inspired Vegan? You can grab your very own by clicking the book cover below.

The Inspired Vegan: Seasonal Ingredients, Creative Recipes, Mouthwatering Menus

Corn and the Grill, Perfect Together


It’s something about the grill that brings out the best in the cob.

Grilled Corn on the Cob with Lime and Pepper Sauce

Great sides are a thing of beauty. Most times when I’m planning out a meal, I unintentionally focus on the main course. I’m not sure why. Maybe it’s because that’s where everyone who is eating will pay the most attention. Maybe because it’s assumed that it should be the centerpiece of the meal. That’s why it’s the main course. Not just a course.

The pressure is on to perform. That is unless there is no main course. A meal where all of the dishes are treated with equal status in the course of the meal. Small plate, tapas, mezze, you can put your own label on it. For me it’s a freeing of the scrutiny that the main course comes under.

Vegan chef/author John Schlimm knows about sides. His great new cookbook, Grilling Vegan Style: 125 Fired-Up Recipes to Turn Every Bite into a Backyard BBQ is loaded with amazing ones.

What happens when you put fresh sweet corn, lime and pepper flavored mayo and a BBQ grill together? Answer, a crowd pleasing side dish. And, here’s how to do it.

Grilled Corn on the Cob with Lime and Pepper Sauce

For the corn
2 tbsp. canola oil
¾ tsp. chili powder
¼ tsp. salt
4 ears fresh sweet corn

For the mayo
⅓ cup mayonnaise (the recipe calls for vegan. I used regular mayo)
3 Tbsp. cilantro or parsley chopped
1 tsp. garlic powder
¼ tsp. ground black pepper
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
4 tsp. fresh squeezed lime juice

Shuck corn and remove silk. I cut my ears in two pieces. In a small bowl mix together the ingredients for the corn seasoning. Rub seasonings all over corn. I used a brush for this.

Heat your BBQ grill to medium heat. When hot, place corn on grill. Grill 2 minutes per side for a total of 8 minutes or until cooked though and light brown.

In a small bowl mix together mayo ingredients. When corn is cooked remove from grill and slather with mayo mixture. Make sure to coat the corn well. Again, I used a brush for this.


Check out this great grilled sweet corn. As you could imagine, it was a pretty big hit. I love elote. And, although this wasn’t the classic Mexican version. It was a pretty great variation on the theme.

Grilled Corn on the Cob with Lime and Pepper Sauce

We reviewed Grilling Vegan Style: 125 Fired-Up Recipes to Turn Every Bite into a Backyard BBQ a little while back. You can check that review out right here.

Recipe Adapted. Grilling Vegan Style: 125 Fired-Up Recipes to Turn Every Bite into a Backyard BBQ, Grilled Corn on the Cob with Lime and Pepper Sauce, John Schlimm. Da Capo Lifelong Books © 2012

Monday Books: Meatless


Who says you can’t do without meat?

Farm Fresh Carrots

Just look at those great farm fresh carrots. Think of the amazing dishes you could make if you only had them in your kitchen right now. Well, farmers market season is just getting under way in most parts of the country. The parts that traditionally have a winter anyway.

This meatless edition of Monday Books fits the week quite well. I’ll be reviewing John Schlimm’s latest cookbook, Grilling Vegan Style later this week. Stay tuned for that. In the meantime time, I’ve got some great cookbooks with an emphasis on veggies for your consideration. I’ve included some vegan/veg heavyweights in the selections. Most notably, Kim O’Donnel and Isa Chandra Moskowitz.

Have a relaxing and respectful Memorial Day.


The Meat Lover's Meatless Cookbook: Vegetarian Recipes Carnivores Will Devour Vegetarian: A Delicious Celebration of Fresh Ingredients How to Cook Everything Vegetarian: Simple Meatless Recipes for Great Food  A Year in a Vegetarian Kitchen: Easy Seasonal Dishes for Family and Friends


The Happy Herbivore Cookbook: Over 175 Delicious Fat-Free and Low-Fat Vegan Recipes Veganomicon: The Ultimate Vegan Cookbook Appetite for Reduction: 125 Fast and Filling Low-Fat Vegan Recipes The Vegan Slow Cooker: Simply Set It and Go with 150 Recipes for Intensely Flavorful, Fuss-Free Fare Everyone (Vegan or Not!) Will Devour


Going Raw: Everything You Need to Start Your Own Raw Food Diet and Lifestyle Revolution at Home Raw Food: A Complete Guide for Every Meal of the Day Live Raw: Raw Food Recipes for Good Health and Timeless Beauty Ani's Raw Food Essentials: Recipes and Techniques for Mastering the Art of Live Food

If we’ve missed one of your favorites, please let us know. We’re always looking for great cookbooks that we may have overlooked.

Three Vegan Cookbooks


When something is not part of your everyday life, things get interesting.

Three Vegan Cookbooks

Vegan. The word has a semi mysterious tone to it. Even though a meatless lifestyle is already part of Main Street and the mainstream, many people still get a glassy look in their eyes when they hear the word. It’s not like these folks have never eaten a salad or pasta before. Right?

Obviously, a vegan or vegetarian existence is a lot more than just salads and side dishes. It includes a wide variety of delicious meals that will make your taste buds and your body smile. We’re talking about everything from appetizers to desserts.

In my view, the biggest problem with the promotion of a meat free existence is ignorance. People seem to equate the food choice with an entire life choice. I’m not certain that there isn’t something to that, but, the two are certainly different things. I know there is vegan junk food, but, it does appear that vegans/vegetarians live their lives with a different outlook on the food they consume than carnivores. It might just be a crazy coincidence, but, I don’t think so.

I’ve got three great cookbooks on my shelf that bring out the best in a no meat regimen. Let’s take a quick look at each of them.

BUY IT! - The Tipsy Vegan: 75 Boozy Recipes to Turn Every Bite into Happy Hour

Author John Schlimm has set out to make vegan dishes with a little something extra. John, who is a member of one of the oldest brewing families in the U.S., brings his alcohol expertise to the vegan table.

His book, The Tipsy Vegan is filled with tasty dishes that pack a punch. Each chapter starts with a cocktail recipe designed to keep the cook happy while they’re working.

This book is loaded with delicious recipes that are easy to prepare and fun to serve.

It is separated into eight amusing sections. Plastered Party Starters, Boozy Soups, Staggering Salads, The Guzzler’s Garden of Side Dishes, Brunch Buzz, The Lush’s Lunch, Sloshed Suppers and Drunken Desserts. You’ll love browsing and cooking through them.

Amy Beadle Roth provides great mouth watering images to accompany many of the dishes.

BUY IT! - Vegan Pie in the Sky: 75 Out-of-This-World Recipes for Pies, Tarts, Cobblers, and More

Vegan bakers delight! If baking is your thing, then Vegan Pie In The Sky is a must for you. It’s packed with seventy five great recipes for pie lovers of all stripes.

Award winning vegan chefs, Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero have teamed up to bring us a nice collection that you will return to again and again.

I have to admit, I am not a dessert person. That said, these pies even had me drooling. If you’re thinking about making one and sending it my way, I’ll put in an order for the Chocolate Galaxy Banana Cheesecake please. It’s on page 92 in case you’re interested (just trying to be helpful).

With numerous vegan cookbooks to their collective credit, it’s obvious from the first page that the these ladies can really bring it.

BUY IT! - The Meat Lover's Meatless Cookbook: Vegetarian Recipes Carnivores Will Devour

Last, but, certainly not least, is Kim O’Donnel’s fantastic cookbook, The Meat Lover’s Meatless Cookbook. The recipes in this book are not vegan like the previous two, but, it’s touted as “vegetarian recipes that carnivores will devour”.

Kim’s recipes are easy to prepare and full of flavor. She has even included one of my favorite vegetarian dishes, the super delicious, Egg In A Hole. I think every kid growing up may have eaten a variation of this easy to prepare breakfast (or dinner) dish. Looking back on it now, it could be used as an early introduction to a vegetarian lifestyle. You’ve got to start this kind of thing at an early age.

I love the fact that the book is divided into seasons. As you would guess, summer has some lighter dishes, while winter sports heartier fare. Most of the recipes have special tags so you can have a little extra information at a quick glance.

You’ll have to admit, those are some excellent cookbooks. All three were published by Da Capo Press, who has made a serious commitment to the vegan/vegetarian cooking community. Hats off to them. It’s a healthy cooking (and eating) style that deserves to be actively promoted.

BONUS – Since you’ve made it this far, I’ve got a nice reward for you. I have one copy of each of these great books to give away to our readers. And, best of all, you don’t have to really do much to get one. Just click here, send us an email expressing your love for meatless meals and we’ll pick three at random. That’s it. We’ll even pay the shipping.

If we don’t select yours you can still grab a copy of any or all of these books by clicking the book cover images above.

Cookbook Daily: Peas and Thank You


Peas and Thank You: Simple Meatless Meals the Whole Family Will Love

Vegan, vegetarian, meatless, call it what you will. The fact of the matter is this type of lifestyle has become mega popular over the past five to seven years. And, with good reason. It’s an incredibly healthy way to live.

If you’re interested in meandering down the meat-free culinary path, there are lots of great guides. Here’s another one, Peas and Thank You: Simple Meatless Meals the Whole Family Will Love.

The title has two phrases that are sure to make any insanely busy family chef sit up and take note. Simple and Whole Family Will Love. After you say that, does it really matter if you’re cooking bacon or broccoli? I think not.

There are over eighty great recipes here for you and your entire family to enjoy. Why not break out of the traditional meat and potatoes mold and try something a little different. Just the potatoes.

Author: Sarah Matheny
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Harlequin;(July 26, 2011)
ISBN-10: 0373892403


Did you miss a Cookbook Daily? You can check out past posts right here?

If you already own this book. Leave a comment and let everyone know what you’ve made from it and how it turned out.

Cookbook Daily: Plenty: Vibrant Recipes from London’s Ottolenghi

Cookbook Daily


One of London’s newest culinary stars, Yotam Ottolenghi, has just released this useful collection of 120 vegetarian recipes.

Since Ottolenghi isn’t a vegetarian himself, it’s interesting to see the way in which he uses his Mediterranean background to make the ingredients he uses really shine. His recipes are based largely on selecting the best ingredients that are in season at any given time of year.

If you happen to find yourself in London, you can stop by and taste some of his cooking for yourself. Ottolenghi, co-owns four restaurants around town. If you’re not luck enough to be able to just drop by one of his places, Plenty will just have to be a suitable substitute.

Author: Yotam Ottolenghi
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Chronicle Books
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1452101248

Want It? We Can Help.


If you already own this book. Leave a comment and let everyone know what you’ve made from it and how it turned out.

Cookbook Daily: Appetite for Reduction

Cookbook Daily

Appetite For Reduction

Vegan chef and author Isa Chandra Moskowitz shows us that eating vegan can be delicious, flavorful and healthy all at the same time.

I know that most of you haven’t tried a vegan cooking routine. And, to be completely honest, neither have I. It’s not that the thought of cutting animal protein out of my daily food consumption scares me, but, I I happen like it (at least every now and then). I also like a lot of the vegan dishes I have tried in the past. So, there may be some hope for me yet (from a vegan standpoint).

Isa has packed 125 inspired vegan dishes into her cookbook. These recipes are nutritionally balanced and contain only 200 to 400 calories per serving. They are naturally low in saturated fat and sugar, which make them great for you too.

I know that this isn’t for everybody. But, there is no reason why you shouldn’t be interested in a little dietary diversity. Especially, when it may help you live longer!

Author: Isa Chandra Moskowitz
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Da Capo Lifelong Books
ISBN-10: 1600940498
ISBN-13: 978-1600940491

Want It? We Can Help.


If you already own this book. Leave a comment and let everyone know what you’ve made from it and how it turned out.