Monday, April 11, 2011

PPK Cookbook Challenge Week 5: Eat, Drink, & Be Vegan

Look what I found lurking in the drafts! I wrote this, but never finished it. Well here it is now.

Week 5, Eat, Drink, & Be Vegan.

I may be a bit spoiled, because this is one of two books that I bought for the challenge, though it's been on my list for ages. (The other book I ordered was 500 Vegan Recipes).

On my first flip-through, I was feeling uninspired, but then I realized that a lot of the recipes are super easy, and I need more of that in my life. After actually preparing a few dishes, I'm in love. Everything is great so far. It's too early to say, but this book may join the ranks of desert island cookbooks.

Accordingly, the Teriyaki Quinoa came together super fast while I made a cake and cookies. Most of the time is downtime, and had I been on top of things, I would have made a lovely salad with mandarin oranges and ginger-lime dressing, but I wasn't. Luckily, it's filling and complete with steamed broccoli and I didn't feel the need to make extra sauce to cover the veggies.

It doesn't make as much food as most of the recipes I'm used to do, but I would say this is 3 main dishes (with a side) or 4 side dishes for two hungry adults.

The 5-Spice Cookies are likewise easy, but are definitely a grown-up cookie. I was skeptical about the use of barley flour, b/c I'd never baked with it, and I was afriad it would make the cookies too faux-health-food, but they turned out really well. (Note that this fear is not rooted in experience).

They have a slight licorice taste to them, and I really like that, but I know not everyone is a fan. This is also one of the few times I'll approve of nuts in cookies. Usually, nuts interrupt the texture of baked goods when baked in, but these work. I'll definitely make these when I hang out wih my tea-snob pals - they like unconventional desserts.

Admittedly, I didn't actually cook the next dish myself, so my report on the process is second hand, but I did eat quite a lot, so I can assure you authenticity there.

Apparently, the Lemony Cashew Pesto over linguine is a matter of boiling pasta and blending some stuff, then combing the results of each process. I guess all pasta is essentially that, but this was really easy! The lemon flavor is really mellow and adds sunniness without overbearing tartness to the dish. I love it. This is going to be my go-to when the CSA dumps loads of basil into my box this summer.


  1. Hmm, I remember passing on this cookbook even though I know it's a standard for a lot of people, but this has renewed my interest.

  2. It's small, but reliable. Every time I pick it up, I can quickly make something really good. There's a saag paneer style recipe that I made the other day that I will definitely be making again and again. It's the best I've had to date!