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Crossroads: Extraordinary Recipes from the Restaurant That Is Reinventing Vegan Cuisine Hardcover – October 6, 2015
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Best Books of the Year So Far in fiction, nonfiction, mysteries, children's books, and much more.
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—Food & Wine
“Redefines vegan cooking.”
“Flavorful Mediterranean-inspired recipes that take vegetables to creative new heights.”
“Sophisticated vegan recipes . . . that even carnivores will love.”
“Teach[es] even non-chefs how to make vegan culinary magic in their own kitchen.”
—Well + Good
“If you’re eating from the new Crossroads cookbook by acclaimed chef Tal Ronnen, you’re eating some of the best, most inventive, freshest and satisfying vegan food on the planet.”
“Tal Ronnen’s food philosophy isn’t unusual for a chef of his caliber. It also isn’t complicated. Simply put: taste above all. And then you realize he’s vegan, an approach to eating that too often has been defined by foods so virtuous they taste worse than the packaging they come in. Except that’s not Ronnen’s game. For him, it doesn’t matter if the food is raw, organic, vegetarian, vegan, local, gluten-free, animal-free, free range or free spirit. If it doesn’t taste great, he isn’t interested. . . . His main courses center around vegetables that aren’t disguised as burgers or steaks or other meaty dishes. Rather, they deliver savory, meaty flavors on their own power, things like roasted shiitake mushrooms that pack in crispy bacon-esque flavor in a salad or pureeing yellow tomatoes into a creamy bearnaise sauce.”
“This beautifully photographed collection of 100 Mediterranean-inspired recipes captures the spirit of [Ronnen's] restaurant, and shows how sophisticated vegan cuisine can be in the hands of someone who is trained in classical French cooking. But these aren't overly complicated chef recipes with long lists of unfamiliar ingredients. And these aren't dishes centered on faux meats or tofu. Instead, these are dishes that put vegetables front and center, showing how glorious vegetables can be."
“Carnivores and vegans and everyone in between will find Crossroads to be an irreplaceable resource for healthful eating. . . . We’ve never seen vegan dishes as universally flavorful.”
“This beautifully illustrated book, dense with recipes that combine flavors in unexpected ways, is destined to be one of the most splattered in my carnivorous kitchen.”
“Tal Ronnen proves that cooking lower on the food chain can be more exciting than grilling a T-bone. Skeptical? Try his linguine with balsamic-roasted mushrooms and tomato-basil butter.”
“Vegan food, reinvented.”
“At Crossroads restaurant in Los Angeles, chefs Ronnen (The Conscious Cook), Scot Jones, and Serafina Magnussen craft refined Mediterranean cuisine from plant-based ingredients. Their new cookbook bursts with artful photographs of rich vegan dishes (e.g., oven-roasted romanesco with onion agrodolce and grappa-soaked raisins, acorn squash ravioli with kale and black garlic butter sauce, oat florentine cookies with mocha sipping chocolate) and surpasses the elegance of titles such as Joy Pierson and Angel Ramos’s The Candle 79 Cookbook. Knowledgable vegan cooks will recognize techniques such as turning soaked cashews into “cream,” but they’ll also learn new skills, such as how to mimic Parmesan cheese with thinly shaved walnuts and nutritional yeast. Expect to see plenty of healthy pantry staples (e.g., agave nectar, agar-agar, arrowroot powder, almond milk) within these recipes. VERDICT Vegan cooking taken to a new level of refinement. Epicures and professionals should take note.”
—Library Journal, starred review
“In his second vegan cookbook (after The Conscious Cook), Crossroads founder and chef Ronnen tackles such issues as sustainabilty, health, and taste. With so many ways to approach plant-based food, the theme of Mediterranean flavor is employed to tie together all of the recipes packed into these pages. This book wonderfully includes all types of recipes, from quick snacks to full meals. The varieties of preparations and flavors include pistachio-kalamata tapenade in the spreads section, charred okra flatbread with sweet corn puree and cherry tomatoes, a small-plate dish consisting of fig caponata with polenta fries, and oat Florentine cookies with mocha chocolate. There is also a small section on pantry staples, such as almond-based Greek yogurt and demi-glace, that go well with nearly any vegetable.”
—Publishers Weekly, starred review
“Though at least one vegan cookbook arrives at my door every week, I’ve never been intrigued enough to review any of them. Then Crossroads arrived, and my vegan-avoidance vanished. Chef and author Tal Ronnen is a classically trained pro who cooks Mediterranean food that’s all plant-based and all wonderful—robust, textured and flavorful enough to satisfy the cravings of carnivores and omnivores. His cooking is not about finding substitutes for meat, but about creating exciting vegetable-centric dishes that will never elicit an exasperated “Where’s the beef?” Ronnen’s recipes are not quick fixes, but they are truly worth the extra time and thought. Some are right for casual weeknights, some for weekend dinner parties. No-hassle Pickled Vegetables are great anytime, while Leek Pâté with Lentil Skillet Bread is a grand starter for a grand dinner. I could eat fabulous Fig Caponata with Polenta Fries every day, not to mention meaty Fried Oyster Mushrooms and herb ricotta (made from almonds) stuffed Cappellacci with vibrant Spinach Cream Sauce. Finish up with a divinely Decadent Dark Chocolate Cake.”
“Tal Ronnen's food is terrific. Delicious, nourishing, and plant-based, it can change your whole approach to eating healthy.”
—President Bill Clinton
“Tal Ronnen is a magician—every time I eat his food, I find myself wanting more and more, and I never miss the butter or bacon fat.”
—Michael Voltaggio, chef and owner, ink.
“Tal Ronnen understands the value of great-tasting, nutritious plant-based dishes in today’s world.”
—Sir Paul McCartney
“Tal Ronnen is a plant-based food whisperer, and now with this book, he and Scot Jones allow us to understand the message. In a world where it’s becoming more and more unrealistic to raise animals for food, it’s time to listen to what the plants are telling us and cook some of these awesome creations.”
—Roy Choi, chef and author of L.A. Son
“Chefs Tal Ronnen and Scot Jones are artists of the highest order. The details that separate us. Whether a dish is vegan or not, disappears in the hands of a true artist. It's just great.”
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
I have several hundred cookbooks in my library. The Conscious Cook and Crossroads are both favorites. Every holiday my family requests the menu to include anything/everthing Tal Ronnen for dinner. Thank you Tal, Scott and Serafina for writing Crossroads.
Be back soon!!! (After I gain a few pounds)
I’ve had a difficult time with this review, not because I didn’t like the book but because every time I return to it I start making ingredient lists and envisioning what I can include for Thanksgiving dinner, and deciding if I should plan an earlier dinner party because I cannot wait to get started with these amazing dishes!! And then the review is forgotten and I’m lost in cooking dreamland.
This is a gourmet book, make no mistake. Even for long time vegans there are some new ingredients and possibly some difficult to find ones (black garlic??). Many of the recipes do not look like they can be whipped up in five minutes, or even 30 minutes, but then again most of these dishes do not look like something you’d throw on the table for the family on a Tuesday night. This is food to impress.
In the early edition I was shown, there was a gorgeous photo for every single dish – and again, that’s what makes it so difficult to get through, you just get stuck on the beauty of the pictures and wondering what these magical dishes will taste like.
Early in the book Ronnen talks of his Crossroads restaurant, and he makes a big deal about not using meat substitutes, just pure whole foods. When I told a vegan friend of mine about this book she says she went to Crossroads for her birthday last year and the menu was heavy on the Gardein dishes.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A top quality, hardcover cookbook with mouth-watering photographs. I have dozens of pages flagged marking recipes I want to fix. Read morePublished 6 days ago by JAM
I love this cookbook. So far I've made the vegan bouillabaise, the lasagna, and a cauliflower salad. All delicious. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Anonymous
I don't understand some of the criticisms. This book has some technical aspects, but all the ingredients are available in any reasonably sized city, say greater than 20 to 30,000,... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Stephen Denagy
Bought it as a gift for my vegetarian friend and she LOVES iT!!Published 3 months ago by Mamashmotek