Top positive review
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Another hit from Bryanna
on August 29, 2011
I have all of Bryanna's other cookbooks and use them often, so I was excited to hear that she had another one out. Her recipes are always dependable and I like the way she explains why ingredients and techniques work the way they do. I have a lot of post-it notes stuck to recipes in this book that I intend to try. They all sound so good!
So far I have made:
1. Yeasted oven pancake with apples. This is a yummy and easy brunch dish.
2. Italian pear tart with corn flour pastry. Delicious and impressive-looking, but quite easy to make. The low fat corn flour pastry was a recipe I will use with many other fillings.
3. Light seitan cutlets. These are worth the price of the book all by themselves. Very tender texture, and no worry about the liquid coming to a boil because they are baked. The recipe makes 16, and I now have 12 in the freezer for use in future meals.
4. Focaccia. I made both variations, one with olive oil and herbs, and one with grapes and a sprinkling of sugar. We couldn't decide which was best and loved them both.
5. Vegan salmon. It is pink from some tomato juice and seafoody from some dulce flakes. There is nori wrapped around it before baking, and that comes out looking like salmon skin. It wouldn't fool anyone into thinking it is real salmon, but it would satisfy any craving I ever have for salmon. Even my picky eater non-vegan husband is eating this spread on crackers.
6. Rich and fluffy vegan bread. This is half whole wheat flour and half all-purpose flour, but it rose light and high. My husband normally resists any bread that is not all white flour, but he ate this with no complaint.
7. Easy homemade spaetzle. These are sort of a drop noodle. My Polish grandmother used to make something like them, and making them brought back memories of her standing at the stove making them, The book says the recipe is from Germany, Austria and Hungary, but I think it should include Poland as well.
Also, Bryanna's oil substitute for salad dressings has been in her other cookbooks and her web site, and is repeated here. It really works to make fat free dressings.
There are some ingredients that a average kitchen might not have, but are normal for a vegan kitchen: nutritional yeast, tofu, miso, vital wheat gluten, etc.
I would not recommend this as someone's ONLY vegan cookbook because it is not a basic book. (Try her "20 Minutes to Dinner" book for that.) But it is a wonderful resource for someone who wants new ideas and innovative techniques. Great job, Bryanna!