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The Asian Vegan Kitchen: Authentic and Appetizing Dishes from a Continent of Rich Flavors Paperback – April 1, 2008


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Kodansha USA (April 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 477003069X
  • ISBN-13: 978-4770030696
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 10 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,089,055 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Because tofu and other vegan mainstays are part of their larders, and since they tend to be dairy-free by design, Asian cuisines lend themselves naturally to vegan cooking, and this handy cookbook does a beautiful job compiling attractive, tasty and uncomplicated vegan recipes from India to China and beyond. Take Japan's Simmered Mixed Vegetables, a deceptively straightforward preparation made complex with a sauce of soy, sake and dashi, a kelp-based stock that's the Japanese equivalent of chicken broth; exotic vegetables, including taro and lotus root, come alive in the salty-sweet braising liquid. Thailand's Sweet Corn Cakes are another example of simple-on-the-outside, intricate-on-the-inside vegan cookery, an addictive spin on traditional corn fritters spiced with ginger, garlic and coriander, and served alongside chili sauce and cucumber relish. Unfortunately, the cookbook is a bit confusing; the recipes are separated by country rather than, say, main ingredient, and the fine, full-color photographs of the dishes are all crammed in the middle of the book. Though cooks may spend extra time searching for ways to use up surplus zucchini, it's an appealing browse full of tasty diversions.
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From Booklist

Chef-author India-born Parekh, now headquartered in Tokyo, learned to cook defensively upon her marriage, after enjoying a Jain childhood of vegetables, lentils, and pulses. She selects the best, most familiar and comforting dishes (200 of them) from eight Asian countries; readers will recognize such favorites as Indonesia’s nasi goring, Korean kimchi (in many varieties), China’s Kung Pao in vegetarian mode, and the well-loved naan and chapati breads of India. Instructions, although relatively brief, are highly reliant on other recipes, like spices, sauces, stocks, and condiments (for instance, tofu mayonnaise, spicy soy-vinegar sauce, and Vietnamese vegetarian stock). Many also demand ingredients not easily found outside major U.S. metropolitan areas—tamarind juice and coriander roots with stems, to name two. Yet gourmet adventures beckon; it’s hard to resist preparing different kinds of meals after seeing a centerfold full of glorious after color photographs. --Barbara Jacobs

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Customer Reviews

I have re-made most of the recipes I've tried, more than twice.
Lotus Girl
Despite the exotic ingredients, Hema is able to communicate her recipes in a clear and straight forward manner so even the beginner cook will not be daunted.
Kathryn Wright
I'd like to recommend the Asian vegan Cookbook book to vegans, vegetarians and everyone.
Haelee

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Lotus Girl on June 8, 2010
Format: Paperback
I've always been a HUGE fan of "Asian" food (a very general term, indeed), from India to Japan and every country in between. This is the only book that satisfies that desire for such a variety of Asian recipes. Ingredients & cooking styles vary dramatically from one country to the next, and I'd never gotten the grasp of Indian cooking till I tried Hema's recipes. I'd say Hema did an amazing job at bringing a variety of recipes from each country together. I've made a great deal of these recipes, and have never been let down. Better said - I've never tried a recipe in this book that I didn't love. Yes, love. I have re-made most of the recipes I've tried, more than twice. Of course, there will be ingredients that you might not have in your pantry - this is expected of "foreign" cooking. Pick the recipes you want to try, buy the ingredients that you don't have one at a time, and try them out. (If you have a Whole Foods, or even a small organic store nearby, it'll be really easy. But even your regular grocery might carry it... you just may never have noticed it before!) You might be surprised at the new tastes you discover and incorporate them into your everyday cooking. I know I have. Of all my regular cookbooks, I refer to this most often (due to my love of Asian food, lol). You might be disappointed to see very few pictures in the book, but don't let that dismay you - the pics in the centerfold are enough to prove these recipes are worth their weight. And yes, everything is 100% Vegan, and totally authentic. :)
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Mimi G. Clark on September 21, 2008
Format: Paperback
In The Asian Vegan Kitchen, Hema Parekh offers readers a virtual International cooking class based on recipes from India, Japan, China, Thailand, Vietnam, Burma, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Korea. For each country, Parekh offers Soups and Salads, Main Dishes and Rice, Side Dishes and Snacks, and Desserts. With 20 years experience teaching Asian cooking classes, Parekh is a master educator, sharing informative and enlightening morsels before each recipe. In her recipe for Koyadofu Tonkatsu (Fried Tofu Cutlets), for example, we learn that in Japan, Katsu means victory, and fried tofu cutlets are often eaten before sports tournaments, exams, or elections to ensure success. Parekh tells us that Indonesia's Nasi Kuning (Yellow Rice) is the color of royalty, and is usually shaped into a cone to represent the mythical Hindu mountain, Meru. She has also included thirty-two pages of mouth-watering color photos, and a five page glossary of lesser-known ingredients and spices.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful By L. Berry on May 14, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book has a lot of great recipes in it and I found it quite inspiring. There a limited photos which are all contained in the middle of the book. My only issue with the book was that despite the fact that I have a very diverse collection of spices and herbs, she seemed to come up with things I did not have. So it is up to you to decide if it is worth the effort to track down some odd ingredient if you want to follow the recipes exact.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By lola_rita on May 14, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book does have some ingredients that you may need to go to a special market to buy. And the recipes are somewhat involved, but they're so authentic. The bonus is that once you take the time and make these recipes, they will taste just like they do at the restaurant. Delicious!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By T. A. Garey on August 28, 2009
Format: Paperback
I was very happy to find this book in a library and decided I wanted my own copy and a few for gifts. The author gives a reasonable overview of several Asian cuisines, highlighting popular dishes and does a very nice job. Occasionally one wonders how big a half a cauliflower is to an Indian person who lives in Japan, but so far the recipes I have tried have worked for me. I've learned a number of new tricks. Flavors and textures are excellent. You don't have to be vegan to appreciate the recipes. I'm omnivorous; there was never a sense that a dish had anything (like meat or eggs) missing.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Cindy Peterson on May 18, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have many vegan cookbooks, most American & most feature MANY MANY Mexican flavours. It is such a change to have such wonderful Asian flavours. The book is divided into countries India, Japan, China, Thailand, Vietnam, Burma, Indonesia, Malaysia & Korea, each offering starters, mains & desserts. Each dish has a little description & tells you how it is traditionally served. The only down side to the book is that, like most vegan cookbooks, it lacks photos of the dishes.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Gumdrop on September 8, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Everything I have made from this book has been delicious! But let's be honest. There are a lot of obscure ingredients that require numerous trips to different grocery stores. Ever heard of a salam or pandan leaf? What about fruit salt? Me neither but that's okay because I'm willing to track them down. Even though the ingredients can be a bit of a challenge, the recipes are completely worth the effort.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Jessica on January 18, 2009
Format: Paperback
The recipes I've tried require adaptation. Some of the measurements don't add up, and I'm unable to source the more exotic vegetables locally (lotus root, drumsticks, etc.). Even so, I would recommend this cookbook. Especially if, like me, you're obsessed with spicy, hot rice noodles!
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