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209 of 215 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Delightful Book of Soup. Highly Recommended
It is much easier to identify very good and very bad cookbooks than it is to identify the merely good or average cookbooks. I saw the beauty of this book with the first recipe I prepared from it. I have read two other books on soup by very famous cookbook authors Barbara Kafka and James Peterson and I would recommend this little book over both of their works. Both of...
Published on April 25, 2004 by B. Marold

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars More like invisible bowl of soup.
Beautiful bowl of soup? I prefer cookbooks with lots of pictures of the recipes. Based on the reviews I read and the title I assumed that there would be lots of pictures of the actual soups. There were some and they looked good, but so many pictures were wasted on just pictures of individual ingredients. I don't need a page with a photo of a bunch of spoons, tomatoes,...
Published 1 month ago by Carrie


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209 of 215 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Delightful Book of Soup. Highly Recommended, April 25, 2004
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This review is from: A Beautiful Bowl of Soup: The Best Vegetarian Recipes (Paperback)
It is much easier to identify very good and very bad cookbooks than it is to identify the merely good or average cookbooks. I saw the beauty of this book with the first recipe I prepared from it. I have read two other books on soup by very famous cookbook authors Barbara Kafka and James Peterson and I would recommend this little book over both of their works. Both of these other works are good, worthy of five stars, but this volume by Paulette Mitchell is better for the price.
The fact that it is limited to only vegetarian and vegan recipes detracts not one wit from its value to the general cook. If this means anything at all, it means that the recipes will be less expensive and faster to prepare than recipes including meat. It especially means that you can make an appropriate homemade vegetable stock for these recipes very cheaply and easily, with no chicken sanitary problems to deal with.
The main body of the book with the chapters of soup recipes covers:
Creamy Soups featuring curried carrot, potatoes, squash, chestnuts, bell peppers, fresh peas, and peanuts
Chunky Soups featuring black beans, red lentils, chickpeas, asparagus, miso, minestrones and ribollita.
Chilled Soups featuring Vichyssoise, borscht, lettuce soup, avocado soup, and gazpacho
Dessert Soups featuring berry-wine, strawberry-rhubarb, gingered pear, and brandied pumpkin.
The chapter on chunky soups comprises about half the recipes. It should be clear from this list that most of the major soupy players are present. The only major type of soup one may miss is seafood chowders. For that, you can go to Jasper White's excellent book, '50 Chowders'.
Many recipes are vegetarian in that they include some dairy product; however, the author gives many tips on making the daried soups suitable to a vegan sensibility. The primary technique is to substitute soymilk for cow's milk and toasted breadcrumbs for grated cheese.
Before the main chapters of recipes, there is a short chapter on preparing vegetable stock. The book ends with an excellent chapter of recipes for `garnishes and accompaniments' which gives recipes for pestos, croutons, and various toasted nibbles. Many recipes also include a garnish which may easily be treated as a recipe in itself and a garnish from one soup can be grafted onto the serving of some other soup.
Aside from the excellent selection of recipes for soups and supporting cast, the recipes are written in a very appealing format. Rather than undistinguished text or simple numbered steps, the steps are broken down into major activities, with numerous checkpoints to indicate where in the preparation it would be best to freeze or how to do parts of the preparation in advance. Soup and garnish steps and ingredient lists are always separate to easily mix and match soup with garnish.
The book is loaded with tips relevant to the particular recipe, but which are also relevant to general cooking techniques. To this end, the author has provided a separate list of alphabetized names of tips, so that if you wish to use crème fraiche in a recipe but you have forgotten the recipe, simply look it up in the tips list. Surely, the index would do as well, except that it would not be as easy to browse the tip titles and let serendipity take its course.
To top it all off, this is a very attractively composed book. The pictures are not abundant. Only about one in ten recipes has an accompanying photograph, but all pics are done in a way which compliments the overall design of the book. The plain black typesetting is possibly not as elegant as the kind of treatment it may have gotten from Knopf, but it is a very nicely designed book. The literary quotes headlined by a famous quote on soup by Lewis Carroll sprinkled here and there simply add to the pleasant experience.
One advantage to meatless recipes is that they will take less time to prepare; however, I do wish to soft pedal the author's suggestion that the recipes are fast and easy. If you make both soup and garnish, you may be dealing with more than one separate steam, saute, or blanche step. Cream soups will require breaking out the food processor, blender, or stick blender. Chunky soups will require a fair amount of knife work. But, don't hold this against this or any other book. Just don't buy it with the notion that you are buying a fast recipe book.
Very highly recommended especially for the price. Not fast, but easy for novices.
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57 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Truly Lovely Addition to your Cookbook Collection with a minor exception., September 10, 2007
By 
Jazzbrat (Bebop City, USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A Beautiful Bowl of Soup: The Best Vegetarian Recipes (Paperback)
I love this book. Not just for the recipes but for the clean design and beautiful photographs. Everything about this book makes you want to use it over and over.

I do have one word of caution. Her miso soup recipe calls for you to boil the miso. She makes an effort to explain how beneficial miso is for your health but unfortunately, boiling miso destroys all of the good enzymes.

Add it at the end by turning off the heat, mix in your miso, and wait a few minutes before serving. Heat activates the enzymes but, again, boiling will destroy them.

Aside from this small detail, it is one of my favorites amoung my vast collection of cookbooks.
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44 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Creative and Unique, November 20, 2005
By 
Beth (Connecticut) - See all my reviews
This review is from: A Beautiful Bowl of Soup: The Best Vegetarian Recipes (Paperback)
What I love about this cookbook is that not only are the recipes are delicious, but they are unique, and the ideas for presentation are great too. We especially love the recipe for Moroccan Stew. It is very flavorful, filling, and healthy, like all the recipes I have tried from this book.
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35 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Beautiful and Creative Cookbook, June 30, 2006
This review is from: A Beautiful Bowl of Soup: The Best Vegetarian Recipes (Paperback)
I purchased this as a present for a friend who was graduating from college. He's not the most cooking-saavy individual, but the colorful pictures and clear instructions in this book made him want to begin making beautiful bowls of soup right away. Although the selection of recipes is not as wide as one might hope (more space than I would like is taken up by "dessert soups"), everything in the book is delicious and presented in creative, eye-appealing ways.
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34 of 39 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I wish there was images, June 20, 2007
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This review is from: A Beautiful Bowl of Soup: The Best Vegetarian Recipes (Paperback)
I think a good cookbook should have an image for every recipe.
This cookbook has beautiful images, but I wish they would show me an image of the cooked soup instead of images of the ingredients. I know what a raspberry looks like, but I have no idea about raspberry soup.
Else than that I think that the yummy titled of the recipe make up a little bit for the lack of images, they all sound good. They are simple yet not obvious soups. They have refined ingredients, but not obscure, you can find everything at the grocery store.
My only other critique would be that the organization of the explanation is trying to simplify the flowing of the making process, but I think it is just confusing. I would like a 1-2-3 kind of book, but this one is more like a flowing text wich makes it hard to follow once you are in the kitchen with your stuff cooking fast.
Over all it seems to be a good book, full of nice little recipies. I just wish there was more images...
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better than I expected...great book for soup lovers!, August 10, 2007
This review is from: A Beautiful Bowl of Soup: The Best Vegetarian Recipes (Paperback)
This book is the perfect soup cook book. I really love soup and wanted some new and interesting recipes. This book definitely delivered! I have tried many of the recipes and all of them were delicious. Each recipe is very unique and my favorite so far is the roasted vegetable soup. The roasting causes a sweetness and carmelization that is delicious and even though there are a lot of ingredients prep is quick because it is mostly just chopping up veggies.

One of my friends was recently diagnosed with Celiac Disease and this book is helping her through her tough time with her new dietary restrictions. She is not able to use any canned broths or bouillions that you could buy at the store so the vegetable stock recipe in this book is helping her to be able to eat the soups she loves again.

This is a great book!
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not for vegetarians only, November 8, 2009
This review is from: A Beautiful Bowl of Soup: The Best Vegetarian Recipes (Paperback)
I am not a vegetarian, although I probably eat a lot less red meat than most people. My review is aimed at those who are not vegetarian and wondering if they should get this book.

If you love good soups, the answer is unambiguously "YES!"

The recipes I've tried so far have been excellent; very interesting and very flavorful. I honestly didn't even notice that it lacked meat.

The Acorn Squash and Fava Bean Stew recipe so far is my favorite. It's pretty amazing how well the different ingredients interact with each other, especially the chard which I've never cooked with before. And the fava beans give you the protein you need to cover for the lack of meat.

Since it's getting into the cold time of year, when soups are just glorious, I love to make batches of soup, freeze the leftovers, and then throughout the work week reheat for a hearty flavorful and warm comfort food. If that sounds like you and you'd like to try some different and tasty soup recipes, this is your book.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Beautiful Book of Keeper Recipes, May 1, 2010
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This review is from: A Beautiful Bowl of Soup: The Best Vegetarian Recipes (Paperback)
It is tough to find a vegetarian cookbook that doesn't have impossibly exotic ingredients. Mitchell uses a variety of common vegetables, and she explains how to store and use them. The ingredients were very familiar to me, but I would never have considered combining them in such a way or have thought to prepare them that way. Who knew you could do so much with celery leaves!

Ten of the twelve recipes that I've tried have become staples for our diet. My husband and I have already lost 13 pounds each. The hearty and healthful recipes are perfect with a slice of toasted whole grain bread or half of a sandwich. On the weekends, I make two pots of soup and we freeze individual portions for the coming weeks. We each get to choose our favorites. My husband even makes deals with me to get his favorites (French Vegetable, a Ramen soup, carrot cashew, and the cover recipe - Wild Rice and Cranberry). Yum!

I also feel pretty confident in making my own vegetable stock now; there's no need to look at the recipe. If you're looking for a collection of tasty, nutritious, and eye-pleasing recipes, then you've come to the right place. Though I wouldn't say these recipes are quick and simple, they are very doable and worth the moderate effort. Whether you want to entertain or just feed your family, you won't be disappointed.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great, but some errors, June 4, 2010
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This review is from: A Beautiful Bowl of Soup: The Best Vegetarian Recipes (Paperback)
The recipes in this book are quite beautiful, and I like the structure of each recipe. It was also very helpful for tips to make several of the recipes vegan, which is a nice alternative when trying to make a healthier soup.

My qualms:
-Not enough pictures (which seems to be a common theme in the reviews). I've never made soups like this, so it would be nice to know what the finished product looks like.
-Editing errors. At the beginning of the book, there are obvious errors such as sentences that end halfway through and quotes that are repeated, as well as odd formatting marks that were clearly meant to be removed before printing. I'd like a book full of beautiful recipes to look polished.

All-in-all, a good purchase, but I do hope the publishers fix their mistakes for the next printing.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Soup Cookbook I Own, May 12, 2011
This review is from: A Beautiful Bowl of Soup: The Best Vegetarian Recipes (Paperback)
This is hands-down the best cookbook for soup I own. While I've bought others in the years since I got this one as a gift, and clipped recipes from magazines, this is the book I return to again and again. They are classic recipes, (cream of tomato, lentil, etc...) but usually the best version of the soup you've ever had with an interesting topping, accompaniment or flavor you wouldn't have thought of on your own. Paulette Mitchell writes clear, casual instructions, and she has become one of my favorite cookbook authors - try her vegetarian sandwich cookbook for great soup / sandwich combos!
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A Beautiful Bowl of Soup: The Best Vegetarian Recipes
A Beautiful Bowl of Soup: The Best Vegetarian Recipes by Paulette Mitchell (Paperback - January 1, 2004)
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