Tag Archives: But I Could Never Go Vegan

MoFo Day 8: But I Could Never Go Vegan Cookbook Review

Today’s MofFo theme is “make a new vegan friend.”  Cookbooks count as friends, right?  They provide us with advice (on cooking and lifestyle), comfort us (with food) in tough times and the best ones make us feel like we know the author.  Today’s challenge was about making a living, breathing friend you say?  I can’t hear you because I’m busy snuggling up with my cookbook collection.

For today’s post, I’ll focus on one of my newest cookbooks: But I Could Never Go Vegan by Kristy Turner. Turner, a former fromagier, writes a popular vegan blog called Keepin’ It Kind.  But I Could Never Go Vegan is her first book and what a fun debut.  Each chapter is based upon an excuse for eating animal foods such as “But I Hate [Insert Vegetable Here]” and “But I Scream for Ice Cream,” and has recipes that debunk that excuse.  The cute concept alone makes the book enjoyable to flip through, but the beautiful pictures and inventive recipes add to the fun.  My only quibble is that some of the recipe intros lack color.  I would love to know a bit more about Turner’s life and how she came up with the various recipes.

At first glance, Turner’s recipes can seem a bit overwhelming.  Many have multiple components or require long cooking times.  However, as I actually cooked through the book, I found that there were a good mix of quick and easy recipe and more elaborate ones.  Though I’m not sure that this is a great book for a beginner, I do think it has a lot to offer for intermediate and advanced cooks of every persuasion.  The recipes are unique, well-thought-out and creative.

Here are a few of the recipes I tried.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk Ice Cream:  The first recipe I tried from this book was actually my least favorite.  Though there was nothing wrong with this ice cream, the almond extract called for in the recipe over-powered the peanut butter flavor.  I like my peanut butter ice cream to taste like peanut butter, so I would not make this recipe again as written.  I’m as shocked as you are that ice cream of any kind qualified as a least favorite for me.

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BLT Tacos: These were so easy and so tasty. If you marinate the tempeh for the tempeh bacon ahead of time, the whole recipe comes together in less than 15 minutes.  Plus BLT as a taco is genius.  Everything should be taco-ized.

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Sesame Sriracha Tofu Sandwich:  I’ll confess that I really don’t like Sriracha, which I think makes me a vegan blasphemer. I do like a good tofu sandwich though, so I made this with chili garlic sauce instead of Sriracha.  It’s basically sloppy joe meets Korean barbecue.  It was okay, but not my favorite.

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Chocolate Stout Chili Fries:  This is a solid chili recipe served over oven fries, so it’s not even that unhealthy.  I topped mine with the sour cream from the book (good in recipes, but not so great on its own) and some guac.

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And saving the best for last, Seitan Phyllo Purses.  These are little phyllo pouches stuffed with seitan and gravy and served on top of more gravy.  They were as delicious as they sound.

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Filed under Book reviews, Cookbooks, veganmofo

Vegan Mofo Day 2: Loaf Is Not an Appetizing Word

The theme for day 2 of MoFo is “recreate a meal from your childhood.”  I was fortunate to be raised in a family that ate dinner together most nights and I move mountains to do the same for my son.  The two main differences between family dinners during my childhood and now are: 1) I grew up eating meat; and 2) unlike my son, I actually ate the food that was served to me.

My Mom had a short list of meals that she rotated through from Monday through Thursday, including chicken cutlets, pot roast and vegetable soup.  Fridays and Sundays were always pasta and my Dad often cooked on Saturdays.  As a small child, my favorite of Mom’s standard meals was meatloaf.  I think this was, in part, because meatloaf employs ground meat and seasoning and thus one can avoid the bones and veins that are uncomfortable reminders of who the meal once was.  (My vegetarian tendencies definitely manifested themselves early on).  That and the fact that meatloaf is a great vehicle for ketchup.

When I first gave up meat, I stuck to cooking simple meals like tofu stir-fry and frozen veggie burgers.  But as my cooking skills improved, the idea of recreating childhood favorites without the meat ick-factor began to appeal to me.  In my search for the perfect meatless loaf, I cooked my way through at least half-a-dozen recipes, finally settling on Dreena Burton’s Lentil Sunflower Pie as the best of the bunch.  Although I could have re-blogged that trusty Lentil Sunflower Pie, MoFo calls for just a little bit more.

Instead, I present the Lentil Mushroom Loaf from But I Could Never Go Vegan.  Honestly, this loaf recipe isn’t that much different than Dreena’s.  It has the same lentil base and similar seasonings.  The main differences are the use of mushrooms instead of Sunflower Seeds and a the addition of a ketchup glaze with a little extra kick from vinegar and powdered mustard.  Overall, the loaf had a good texture and held together nicely, but it definitely needed the glaze for flavor.  That was fine by me because I always drown my loaf in ketchup.

Verdict: If, like me, you grew up with ketchup-covered meatloaf, this Lentil Mushroom Loaf just may inspire some nosh-talgia for you.

 

Never Go Vegan Loaf

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Filed under Cookbooks, Recipes from Cookbooks, veganmofo