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Vegetarian recipe books - Reviews & Recommendations.

Discussion in 'The Vegetarian Forum' started by Muggle, Nov 2, 2012.

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  1. Muggle

    Muggle Addicted Poster

    Post your reviews and recommendations here!

    I will edit this post with a list of the books and links to the posts that contain reviews about them.

    Vegan books thread is here.
    • Like Like x 3
  2. Muggle

    Muggle Addicted Poster

    I'll start.

    River Cottage Veg every day! - Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall

    I love this book. In the introduction it does state that it's not strictly a vegetarian cookery book, it's a vegetable cookery book. However, I'm pretty certain that everything in it is vegetarian. He does list parmasan in quite a lot of recipes but it's always stated like "parmasan, hard goat's cheese or other strong-flavoured hard cheese" and it's usually just an extra on top, not an essential part of the recipe. (In the UK parmasan is not vegetarian. )
    Apart from that, it is wonderful. It's got lovely full page colour photos of all the recipes.
    About a third of the recipes are vegan already as long as vegan ingredients (such as vegan wine) are used and about another third can be easily veganised.
    I really would recommend this book to anybody. It's not like other vegetarian cookery books which focus on replace meat (if that makes sense), it's all about making vegetables interesting.
    • Like Like x 1
  3. shyvas

    shyvas Deity Forum Moderator

    I've not read the book but did watch the TV series, which I really did enjoy.
    Most of the recipes did look amazing even thought I really can't remember one except for that raw vegan chocolate tart.:lick:

    It also infuriates me that so many vegetarian recipes contain Parmesan. Authentic Parmesan is made with rennet ; however I know that you can get imitation Parmesan in the US. I've never seen it in the UK.
  4. Muggle

    Muggle Addicted Poster

    The recipes are amazing. I haven't ventured into the desserts section yet. I might have too.

    Sainsbury's basics Italian hard cheese is vegetarian and is practically parmesan.
  5. shyvas

    shyvas Deity Forum Moderator

    That raw chocolat tart is on my to do list.:lick:
  6. Muggle

    Muggle Addicted Poster

    Another one.

    The New Students' Veggie Cook Book - Carolyn Humphries

    This was invaluable when I was at university. It assumes that you know nothing about cooking but it isn't patronising. The introduction contains information on kitchen equipment essentials, essential store-cupboard items, basic preparation skills and basic cooking skills such as how to boil an egg, cook rice etc. It was handy as a quick recap guide when I wasn't entirely sure how to cook certain things.
    As for the recipes. There are no photos, it is a cheap book after all (only £4 or US$8 according to the cover) and the recipes are quite simple, nothing too adventurous because it's supposed to be cheap food! There is a heavy emphasis on using tinned rather than dried beans/lentils but they are quicker to cook without the pre-soaking. I'm sure dried could be used instead.
    My favourite thing about it is the measurements though. It has metric, imperial and American measurements so there's no faffing around with trying to figure out the measurements to use. (A lot of the vegan cookery books I have only have American measurements.)
  7. Lord Snot

    Lord Snot Parsley Provider

    The Vegetarian Student Cookbook - Hamlyn

    This was a great help to me when I was starting out. It is meant for students so most of the recipes are relatively easy, not too time consuming, and are made of cheap ingredients.

    - Well laid out, easy to read, easy to find recipes
    - Divided into sections such as Italian, Chinese, Indian, Breakfast, Desserts
    - Each recipe has descriptors such as "quick", "easy" or "cheap" to help you find what you're looking for
    - Doesn't use obscure ingredients
    - Has a beginning section like the one Annia described above, giving basic cooking tips as well as some guidance on nutrition
    - Wide variety of cuisines and dishes
    - Everything I've cooked from there has been very yummy
    - Easily veganised if you're cooking for vegan friends
    - Focuses on using vegetables as the main part of the dish rather than mock meats. Some tofu recipes.

    - The thing I really hate about it is that pretty much every recipe has eggs, cheese or cream. Even if you're not vegan, that amount of fat is just not good for you.
    - Mentions fish sauce in a few recipes, although no actual fish. I think it's only two recipes, but it's still annoying.

    I can't really think of any other bad things. I would definitely recommend it. Even as a vegan I still use it quite often, obviously making some substitutions.
    • Like Like x 1
  8. Freesia

    Freesia not my business.

    I have the Vegetarian Students cookbook above too, and Easy Vegan, which have the same cover style. Both good and the Vegetarian Students cookbook had a number of great risottos and I remember both having good soups. THough again the same problem with egg, cheese, fish sauce etc. One of the recipes suggested cooking chicken for "omni friends" to serve with the burrito, ah no thanks. But if the recipes are veganised it is still a good book.

    I probably shouldnt have written about Nicola Graimes in the other thread, oops, as not vegan but I really like her books, I have Vegetarian and Vegetarian Cookbook (?) weird titles, but anyway I got my paella, my chilli beans and my hot and sour soup from those books.

    I also have Vegetarian Feast
    and Simon Rimmers Accidental Vegetarian,
    also Alice Hart's vegetarian which is a very pretty book,
    and Paul Gayler Vegetarian, Vegetarian Cooking A common sense guide (Murdoch books), Pat Crocker's A Vegetarian Cooks Bible,
    Vegetarian Bible (which is Australian)
    Australian Womans Weekly Vegetarian Cookbook (1989)
    tHE Revive Cafe Cookbook (from New Zealand) ,
    You are What you Eat By Gillian Keith (Not vegetarian but I ripped the 6 omni pages out and still had a serviceable book).

    All these books have nice vegan recipes anyway, or easily veganised.

    And more books. I think I have a problem.
    • Informative Informative x 1
  9. Freesia

    Freesia not my business.

  10. angie54321

    angie54321 Star Member

    If you're adventurous and like to try food from around the world, I can highly recommend World Food Cafe Books 1 and 2 - http://www.amazon.co.uk/World-Food-Café-Chris-Caldicott/dp/0711217513

    And if you're passion is for Indian curries look no further than this book - 660 Curries - not vegetarian, but loads of vegetable, bean and lentil recipes, and many of the meat dishes can be made using quorn or seitan etc


    And if you love the Anglicized Indian cookery style that you eat when you have a takeaway in the UK and you own a kindle, this is a fantastic bargain for 83p http://www.amazon.co.uk/You-Cook-In...&sr=1-1&keywords=you+can+cook+indian+takeaway
    • Funny Funny x 1
  11. thefadedone

    thefadedone Needs a life

    Has anyone tried any recipes from Isa Does It?
  12. shyvas

    shyvas Deity Forum Moderator

    I saw one of the programmes on the tv the other day and Hugh's recipes really are original. I must make a point of making the raw vegan chocolate tart one of these day.

  13. Dropkick

    Dropkick the best half of a great wit


    Isa Does It: Amazingly Easy, Wildly Delicious Vegan Recipes for Every Day of the Week

    By Isa Chandra Moskowitz
    Author of: Veganomicon, Appetite for Reduction, Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World, Vegan with a Vengeance, Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar, Vegan Brunch: Homestyle Recipes Worth Waking Up For, and Vegan Pie in the Sky.

    I just got Isa Does It. A fairly new cookbook (came out in October 2013) by my favorite vegan cookbook author. One of my first vegetarian cookbooks was by Isa and many of the dishes I normally eat came from it.

    If I was buying a Vegan cookbook as a gift for a beginner this would be one of my first choices, yet it would also be one of my first choices for a experienced cook. In my estimation Isa Does It is a great cookbook for both the beginner or the experienced vegan cook. It is written so that the beginner won't get confused and yet not so simply that the experienced cook will feel it's simplistic. It's packed with great recipes, instruction, and photography.
    • Like Like x 4
  14. Every recipe I've tried of Isa's has come out good. I haven't tried Isa Does It, but it's on my Amazon wish list. :D
  15. PTree15

    PTree15 Beach bum

    I just got this recently, and I couldn't agree more. Also, I love that a lot of the recipes can be made in under and hour -- some only take half an hour. When I get home from work (around 7ish on the non-busy weeks), sometimes I'm not in the mood to fuss and I just want something quick but tasty. This is also handy when I haven't spent Sunday preparing food for the week, which I try to do, but don't always succeed.
  16. Mr Crunchy

    Mr Crunchy Veteran Member

    At the beach
    Linda McCartney's Home Cooking - Linda McCartney

    This was one of the first cookbooks I bought after becoming vegetarian. Many of the recipes are traditional non-vegetarian meals converted to veggie with substitute ingredients. As such, she relies heavily on soy crumbles (TVP) and other meat substitutes. If you've moved past the imitation meat stage (I still haven't after 4 years), then it is probably not as useful. However, I found it to be quite helpful when I was just starting out and realized that 95% of the recipes in Betty Crocker aren't vegetarian.

    The most helpful part of the book for me, however, was not the recipes but rather the other sections on nutrition, ingredients and procedures, all from a vegetarian perspective.

    Aside from pointing out the nutritional deficits I need to watch out for as a vegetarian, she opened my mind to the multitude of available plant ingredients, going into depth on each one about the nutritional benefits and preparation tips. She even explains how to use them as substitutes in traditional recipes, rendering the recipes in the book as superfluous because after reading that chapter, you can pretty much figure it out.

    I haven't taken it down off the shelf for a while now, but I hang onto it because it was sort of a ground-breaking publication, being one of the first widely-read vegetarian cook books. It's a little dated (1992), but there is still useful information for the beginner.

    Linda was one heck of a great person, I'm so sorry she's gone.
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2014
    • Like Like x 2
  17. Everleigh

    Everleigh World Class Member

    I'm liking this Mayim's Vegan Table-Mayim Bialik

    I found this cashew cheese recipe that was good and most of the recipes look simple and easy to make.Some things are a little high in oil but you can just easily reduce it if you want.It would be very good for someone just starting out being vegetarian or vegan.It looks good for kids too.
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2014
  18. Dropkick

    Dropkick the best half of a great wit

    Is this the same Mayim Bialik that's on The Big Bang Theory?
    • Like Like x 1
  19. Everleigh

    Everleigh World Class Member

    ^^Yes,that's her.She's also a trained neuro- scientist.She began by cutting out dairy for her son who was allergic.Then she and her entire family went totally vegan.:)

    I am enjoying the book so far.I would next like to make her quinoa burgers.The recipe looks so easy and quick.I think most people appreciate that they can get in and out of the kitchen quickly so this looks like a great cookbook for that.
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2014
  20. Dropkick

    Dropkick the best half of a great wit

    The other day I picked up a used book at a library sale. It's titled Vegetarian Rice Cuisine from Pancakes to Paella by Jay Solomon.
    While so far I've only cooked one recipe* out of it, I'm enjoying that recipe, and many of the other recipes in the book look very good.
    There are a wide range of dishes in the book (125 recipes) and they cover the cuisine of many different countries.
    If you're interested in rice dishes this book is definitely worth a look.

    *Tofu and Rice Salad with Javenese Peanut Dressing

    1/2 pound of extra-firm tofu cut into 1/2 inch cubes
    3 cups cooked rice
    1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
    3 or 4 scallions, chopped
    4 oz. canned sliced water chestnuts, drained
    1/4 cup hot water
    3 Tbsp chunky peanut butter
    2 Tbsp light soy sauce
    1 Tbsp rice vinegar
    1 tsp sesame oil
    2 cloves garlic chopped
    1 Thai chile or Jalapeno, seeded and diced
    2 Tbsp fresh mint, chopped
    2 Tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped

    Preheat oven to 375F
    Bake tofu on lightly greased baking pan for 15 to 20 minutes, until lightly browned. Cool slightly.
    In a large bowl whisk dressing together.
    Mix all, coating rice mix well with dressing.
    Chill at least 1 hour before serving to allow flavors to meld.
    Serve over lettuce.

    What I did (changes):
    I made a few changes, due to my lack of some ingredients and my normal tendency to add or subtract ingredients.
    -I didn't do anything to this recipe that changed the flavor very much- I still stand by the recipe as listed above.

    I had no water chestnuts as my mother had borrowed mine and I was unaware of this until I started to cook. I replaced them with one cup of raw spanish peanuts. I roasted the peanuts in the oven in another pan beside the tofu (the peanuts only require about 10 to 15 minutes to cook).
    I used a Jalapeno pepper as I had them.
    I used more cloves of garlic (4 medium/small cloves)
    I didn't have any scallions so I diced one onion instead (about 1 cup diced)
    I replaced the red bell pepper with a yellow bell pepper and a small piece of green bell pepper. -I did this because the yellow bell was the oldest pepper in the refrigerator and the piece of green was a leftover from a previous recipe.
    I added more cilantro (about a 1/4 cup) because I wanted more green in the dish.
    Also I might have been a little bit light with the mint, as my plant (growing in the kitchen window) hasn't grown much yet and I didn't want to pinch off too much. -Though I might have gotten 2 tbsp worth, however I chopped it along with the cilantro and didn't measure.

    I ended up with an 8 cup yield.
    I figured out the calories for what I made and it comes to 252 calories per cup (with water chestnuts instead of the spanish peanuts this would be less)
    • Like Like x 1
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