Anyone who thinks that they could never give up meat will find true enlightenment in The Vegetarian Meat and Potatoes Cookbook
. Eating vegetarian does not mean giving up hearty, filling, and, most importantly, deliciously satisfying food. Vegetarian cuisine is not often associated with indulgence, but in this book food writer, chef, and cooking instructor Robin Robertson provides recipes for hearty, soul-satisfying--yet surprisingly elegant--dishes that will entice vegetarians and nonvegetarians alike. Hoisin Eggplant Balls are a rich and flavorful appetizer, replacing that old standby, the chafing dish of little meatballs. In Compari-Scented Vegetable Stew with Fennel and Orange Zest, cured olives and chickpeas provide a substantial backdrop for a heavenly mingling of the more delicate flavors, resulting in an intense and sophisticated entrée. Ginger-Sesame-Glazed Portobello Steaks over Wasabi Mashers relies on an aromatic marinade to add complexity to these "meaty" mushrooms. Familiar comfort foods are also well represented: Mushroom Barley Soup, Flaky Potpie, Layered Vegetable Lasagne, and more. Even the most elegant recipes in the book are surprisingly easy to prepare, and each offers the many advantages of a vegetarian diet without depriving anyone of their beloved indulgences. --Robin Donovan
From Publishers Weekly
Robertson is out to seduce unrepentant carnivores with vegetarian dishes that satisfy those essential animal-fat qualities: intense flavor, luxurious texture, and the comforting sensation of a full stomach. She devotes a whole chapter to "steaks" and another to "stews," making abundant use of high-protein products like tempeh, seitan and tofu. She also relies heavily on ingredients high in natural flavor-enhancing glutamates, like mushroom and tomatoes. Robertson is hearteningly forthright about the limitations of vegetarian cuisine: "I won't try to tell you that grilled tofu can taste like filet mignon. It's not going to happen." Still, in general she ratchets taste up a notch higher and a step further away from the steamed, seasoning-free non-cuisine that once was American vegetarianism. Some are based on the classic ginger-garlic-soy sauce building blocks of Chinese cooking (e.g., Shiitake-Stuffed Tofu Steaks with Hoisin Glaze). She freely borrows high-voltage ingredients from Latin cuisine (Chipotle-Avocado Dip) and Southeast Asian (Wheat-Meat Satays with spicy Peanut Sauce). There's an occasional nod to French cuisine ("Fauxscargots") and New American (Balsamic-Glazed Stuffed Mushrooms, Roasted Red Pepper and Potato Napoleons). Attempting to keep things simple, Robertson sometimes overeconomizes on instructions; anyone making homemade seitan should be warned about the soupy, wrong-looking mess you get halfway through the process. But none are irreparable and most deliver the promised punch. Robertson's easygoing attitude readily beats a path to the heart through the taste buds, and even the most stalwart carnivores will likely find themselves enjoying the ride despite themselves.
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.