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Still Life with Menu Cookbook Paperback – October 1, 1994

16 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Culinary and fine artist Katzen here provides 55 diverse meatless menus for today's "increasingly complex schedules." Her focus is on presenting an esthetically appealing ethnic meal, nutritionally sound and prepared with easily found ingredients. Katzen's sophisticated vegetarian cuisine has a light touch. Her recipes now use relatively little butterfat and few rich dairy products. Traditional fare is represented (Irish soda bread, Tuscan bean soup, chocolate chip peanut butter cookies). More adventurous are the Thai garlic soup, pesto and peppercorn torta and spinach souffle paprikash. Menus for pasta dinners, stir-fry dinners, breakfast, brunches and teas, and "good" fast food suggest dishes for several meals. Do-ahead steps designed to minimize work time are included with all menus containing more than two dishes. New readers and fans of Katzen's previous books ( Moosewood Cookbook and The Enchanted Broccoli Forest ) should relish this personal and appealing volume, her first in six years. Full-color reproductions of Katzen's original still lifes precede each menu. 100,000 first printing; author tour.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Katzen, author of the hugely popular The Moosewood Cookbook ( LJ 3/15/78) and The Enchanted Broccoli Forest ( LJ 10/15/82), again features her cuisine and her art, in a series of vegetarian menus accompanied by pastel drawings. Menus emphasize advance preparation for today's busy cook. Disappointingly, the recipes don't seem as fresh and innovative as those in the earlier books: Velvet Corn Soup or Mediterranean Lentil Salad seem all too familiar now. Jeanne Lemlin's Vegetarian Pleasures: A Menu Cookbook ( LJ 4/15/86) has broader appeal for vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike; still, Katzen's fans represent a large audience. JS
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press; Revised edition (October 1, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0898156696
  • ISBN-13: 978-0898156690
  • Product Dimensions: 10.9 x 8.5 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #107,154 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Mollie Katzen is a cookbook author and illustrator/designer, best known for her best-selling classics, Moosewood Cookbook (a 2007 inductee into the James Beard Cookbook Hall of Fame) and The Enchanted Broccoli Forest. Her nine other titles include a trilogy for children (Pretend Soup, Honest Pretzels, and Salad People) dubbed "the gold standard of children's cookbooks" by the New York Times. Mollie has worked as a creative consultant for plant-based recipes and menus, most notably with Harvard University Dining Services, where she has served as a consultant on vegetarian cooking since 2003. She is a popular public speaker, specializing in culinary-medical conferences (in addition to other venues), helping to educate medical professionals on the links between food choices and health and prevention. Mollie's newest book is The Heart of the Plate: Vegetarian Recipes for a New Generation (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, September 2013).

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Kristin L. Leydig on April 1, 2002
Format: Paperback
This is one of my favorite cookbooks. I'm a bit of a cookbook addict and tend to buy lots of them, then when I realize I never actually COOK anything out of a book, I get rid of it. This one, on the other hand, is off the shelf nearly every week, it's ripped, it's dirty, it has lots of food stains on it because I use it so often.
Some of the recipes are true breathtakers. The Thai appetizer is amazing. And the seeded tomato soup. Lots and lots of yummy things here. She has a whole section on "quick and easy." And I can always find something that I have the ingredients on hand for.
Mollie writes great introductions to the recipes, so you always know what you're getting into with each one.
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25 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Elizabeth HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on June 11, 2001
Format: Paperback
Just shy of 400 pages this is a gem of a cook book.What I appreciate about the book is it is laid out as meals. Of course you can make one item or all or mix and match and combine with family favorites you already have.
On page 17 the author has a "How To Use This Book" section where she reminds the reader that sometimes it is when we do not follow a recipe so closely that we learn to love cooking.
Now I will probably sound a tad snobbish so forgive me , but I think this is a cookbook that will appeal to people who are well traveled, very curious about food, willing to try new things and probably educated and upscale. I say this because the person who likes what is called "All American" meat and potato and high fat and unhealthy food will probably be lost here.
We live in California where we have a year round bounty of the best fruits and vegetables so this is an easy to use book as far as ingredients go. And we loved the Roasted Red Peppers with Garlic and Lime on page 56, the Strawberry Meringue Pie on page 85 the Chinese Vegetable Soup on page 89 the Greek Stuffed Eggplant with Bechamel Sauce on page 151 the Southwest Salad with Black Beans and Corn on page 178 the Yellow Split Pea Dal on page 191 oh and the Spinach Roll Ups with Lime Chutney. We love Indian food!!
My husband would live in Tuscany if he had his way I would choose the south east area of rural France, so he loved the Linguine with Quick Tuscan Tomato Sauce on page 239 and the Pasta with Marinated Vegetables like roasted peppers, artichoke hearts tomato mushroom and olives. Not canned olives but the luscious oil cured type you find in Italy and Greece.
On page 331 she has Week-Long Menu Planning Guide where she lays out everything you will need to aquaria as well as some encouraging words about how to combine and end up with great leftovers. And like all her wonderful books she did all the paintings. The recipes are easy to follow as well.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By on October 3, 1997
Format: Paperback
From the gorgeous drawings to the variety of recipes/menus, Still Life remains one of my favorites out of my many cookbooks! The two recipes that I get asked to make over and over again are the Sczechwan Green Beans and Mrs. Buershaper's Molasses Cookies. Mollie Katzen continues to put her emphasis on freshness, color and variety. I highly recommend it to vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 30, 1996
Format: Hardcover
Mollie Katzen's newest (to me) "Still Life With
Menu Cookbook" is such a read. I have used over
ten of the recipes since I received it for Father's Day.
Her Moosewood Cookbook and The Enchanted Broccoli Forest
are chock full of recipes but this one gives us menus.
This guy has never been all together on recipes
and less so on table setting. This will give me a leg up.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Joyce K. on July 29, 2006
Format: Paperback
I bought this book over 20 years ago, when my best friend became a vegetarian and I wanted to cook meals that we could share. I have 3 of Mollie's books; starting with the Enchanted Brocoli Forest (which to me, is the best) I bought this one after I had run through almost all of Brocoli Forest, and loved the recipes there. Still life is a bit more refined, as she lays out menus; paints a picture, or landscape with food. I have, over the years bought many other vegetarian cookbooks, but this book, along with the other two mentioned above, are classics, and present meals easy to prepare and ones which almost all meat-eaters find equally appealing. I high recommend this book for anyone just starting out on the vegetarian way of life, as well as for established vegetarians, or those who want to eat in a more healthy way. This is a very practical cookbook.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Deb Nam-Krane VINE VOICE on August 17, 2010
Format: Unknown Binding
This was my first Mollie Katzen purchase. I was aware, of course, of her reputation as the original vegetarian author and I wanted to try her out.

This was a good pick. Her recipes are not only varied but well-organized into menus. While, of course, I've made many of the dishes stand alone, it's nice to have a guide for what flavors and textures might work well together.

While many of the recipes are very good, the challah recipe is, as she says, the best challah recipe, hands down. It's simple and easy to learn, and I've referred to it many times over the years. (It was also easy to modify when I became vegan.) Her take on the chocolate pudding cake has become one of my family's favorites and, again, it's an easy recipe for a first time cook.

This was the first time I ever saw the concept of a nut butter-based sauce over pasta and vegetables, and the first time I served it I ran out of food quickly. It's delicious, and I can see why she served it to her family many times over the course of a week. Other standouts are her composed salads (simple to prepare, but makes for a gorgeous presentation) and the Szechuan green beans. Yes, they are addictive, and yes, it is hard to get them from wok to plate.

The book isn't perfect. For whatever reason, there seems to be an emphasis on low-fat cooking here. I suppose this is a reaction to the seventies brand of vegetarianism, when people were loading up on butter and cream to make up for the absence of meat in their diets, but after several references I found myself annoyed.

Minor problem- otherwise a great addition to a vegetarian shelf.
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