Showing posts with label Contest. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Contest. Show all posts

Sep 6, 2018

"vegan reset" + giveaway

Bet you didn't think I'd post again this soon, did ya? I didn't think so, either, but I wanted to let you know about a cookbook coming out this week that is pretty amazing, as a matter of fact. Vegan Reset (Amazon) was written by Kim-Julie Hansen of Brussels Vegan (though now the site is

Kim-Julie explains that "reset" is just like it sounds; think of restarting a machine that's been malfunctioning or not working the way it should and pressing the magic button to send it back to the reset stage. 

She explains that the book is about giving your body the love and attention it needs to survive and thrive. 

There are a few things I love about the book. 

She does a reset section, which is roughly half of the book, that covers 28 days (4 weeks) of menus, breakfast, lunch, dinner and a snack, and she gives you the menus, the shopping lists and the bulk cooking strategies (along with all the recipes for everything!) of each week. Now reread this paragraph because it is packed.

Did you get that? She is basically holding your hand and walking you through each day of each week, for a month. The menus are there, the shopping lists are provided and the methods and process of bulk cooking twice a week is spelled out. All the recipes are with the weeks and everything has a photo. Each meal and each menu item.

Great, you say, but I don't want a reset. I just want to cook and eat. In addition to all the recipes and menu ideas for the weeks, for each meal, she also provides regular menu items that help you along, either after the reset, or just as a regular dinner or lunch or breakfast dish.

Let me be clear. Although this book can be used as a "reset," complete with 84 meal dishes and their recipes, it can also be used just as a regular cookbook of great meals, including drinks and desserts. Or you can choose a few days in a row that sound good to you and cook those meals. The reset part of the book is a bonus; the entire book is a gem.

Here is a sampling:

This is a Beet Salad with Miso-Ginger Tempeh and Red Quinoa.  This salad bowl is a composition of other parts of the meal of the week, on Day 22. The other meals this day are: Oatmeal with Papaya & Brazil Nuts for breakfast and Creamy Butternut Noodles for dinner.  

This Spinach Pasta with Zucchini-Nut Sauce is a recipe out of the fourth part of the book, named "Beyond Reset: Additional Recipes." This was a perfect summer dinner.

This Zucchini Bake was an ideal addition to our lunchbox. Because the potatoes were creamy, there was no harm done to the texture as it sat in the fridge the night before, and in the lunch box all day. Cashews are the base to this cream sauce. The other meals on this day, Day 26, are, for breakfast, Sunflower Seed & Berry Toast and for lunch, Heart of Palm & Kale Salad.

I doubled these recipes because, while the book is great for 1 person resetting, the recipes are made for 2 servings (or so) and we are a family of 5.

Now, you know the drill: test the recipe below and enter the contest to win a copy of the book Vegan Reset, US residents only, please. The contest ends on September 17, 2018. Good luck!

Excerpted from VEGAN RESET © 2018 by Best of Vegan LLC. Photography © 2018 by Best of Vegan LLC. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.


¼ cup regular or gluten-free all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
1 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of sea salt
¾ cup soy milk
3 tablespoons maple syrup,  plus more for serving
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 tablespoon unsweetened shredded coconut, for serving
Fresh cherries or other fruit,  for serving

1. Mix the flour, cornstarch, flaxseed, baking powder, and salt together in a bowl.

2. In a separate bowl, mix the soy milk, maple syrup, coconut oil, vinegar, and vanilla.

3. Combine the wet and dry mixtures and whisk together thoroughly.

4. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat, then scoop 2 to 3 tablespoons of batter per pancake into the skillet. Cook on each side until brown.

5. Serve with the coconut, cherries, and additional maple syrup.

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Sep 1, 2018

"the china study cookbook" + giveaway

I am so excited to share with you the revised and expanded edition of Leanne Campbell's The China Study Cookbook [Amazon].  This whole foods, plant-based cookbook is just fantastic! The photos are brand-new, the recipes have been revised, the format is simple and clean, the food tastes great and the recipes are easy and fast!

Basically, the perfect WFPB cookbook (Whole Foods, Plant-Based eating is eating whole foods exclusively, that are only plant-based. This means no oil or any processed ingredients)! I love it and I know that it would be a great asset to a lot of people.

As usual, don't take my word for it - let's look at some pictures and then I'll share a recipe with you to try for yourself - one that is a favorite of Leanne's kids (who are now adults, but they were kids once, too). I know that if you make that dish, it will show you just how terrific the recipes in the book are.

I'm not kidding when I tell you that I really love this book;  I had to try something in almost every category!

Let's start with this salad: Ensalada Azteca. It reminded me of Native Food's salad by the same name, but this one uses no oil and I love that! The flavors are perfect and the salad was very filling. This is a main dish salad that won't leave you feeling hungry.  I roasted the corn for the salad (I had a few extra minutes, and it's worth it), but otherwise, the recipe is pictured as written.

I then moved on to salad's complement: soup. This is the Peanut Kale Soup, and while the flavors were great and the recipe was quick and easy (and I used PB2 instead of peanut butter), my version doesn't look like the photo in the book. Regardless, we loved it and ate it all.

The next logical place to go is to a sandwich! To not disappoint,  I prepared this Roasted Veggie Sub. The sub features any of a number of Savory Sandwich Spreads (Golden Garden Mayonnaise, Aioli Sauce, Chipotle Sauce), here I have chosen the Aioli Sauce.

Since school has started again for the kids and me (we are all in college), this Asian Ginger Cabbage Salad was the perfect lunchbox meal. It was great at room temperature and it is full of good carbs, vegetables and protein. I loved this one for multiple reasons.

Baking WFPB means that the flour is whole grain and there is no added processed fat, like vegan butter or oil. These Potato Rolls, made with whole wheat pastry flour, were fabulous. They were fluffy, tender and delicious. I served them with the pasta that I made next...

For the family pasta meal, I opted for the Spaghetti with Tomato Coconut Sauce, and I am so glad I did. We've been a little burned out on regular tomato sauce here, so the spin with the coconut-cilantro was just what we needed.

Finally, I couldn't not make a sweet dish! I chose something that my daughter likes: Lemon Poppy Muffins. These had just the right amount of sweetness - not too much, not too little - and they were beautifully tart from the lemons. We enjoyed these with a cup of tea. So good!

As you can see, the recipes are varied and, even if you don't believe me when I say they tasted terrific, you can at least see that they look terrific! How about you try the following recipe from The China Study Cookbook - Revised and Expanded Edition?

I chose the Dominican Rice and Beans (p 207) to share with you? Why? Because Leanne says that this was one of her kids' favorite meals! Whatever kids say they love, has to be good all around, especially when one of those favorites is healthy, to boot! The recipe is from The China Study Cookbook - Revised and Expanded Edition by Leanne Campbell, and the recipe is shared with permission. Photo is by Nicole Axworthy.

After you peruse the recipe, make sure to enter the contest to win a copy of the book! US residents only, please. Contest ends Monday at midnight, September 10, 2018. Good luck!



My sons, now 24 and 23, were raised on a plant-based diet, and if you ask them what their favorite meal is, they both immediately respond Dominican Rice and Beans, topped with fresh salad. The secret to this meal is to top the rice and beans with fresh salad and avocados, then drizzle with lemon juice and/or rice vinegar.

Rice and Beans
¼ cup diced onions
4 garlic cloves, minced
½ cup chopped green bell peppers
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons vegetable broth
2 cups water
2 (15-ounce) cans beans of your choice (pinto, black, red, etc.), rinsed and drained
½ cup grated butternut squash
1½ tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon salt
4 cups cooked brown rice, for serving

2 cups sliced lettuce
2 cups sliced cabbage
¾ cup sliced cucumber
¾ cup sliced beets
1 tomato, sliced
1 large avocado, pitted and sliced
3 tablespoons rice vinegar
3 tablespoons water
¼ teaspoon salt, plus more to taste

1. In a large saucepan, sauté onions, garlic, bell peppers, and cilantro in vegetable broth over medium-high heat until onions brown.
2. Add water, beans, and squash. Bring to a low simmer and cook, uncovered, for 10 minutes.
3. While the beans are cooking, prepare the salad. In a large salad bowl, toss together all ingredients. Set aside.
4. Once the beans cook, add tomato paste and salt. Taste and add more salt if needed. Cook for 2–3 more minutes. Remove from heat.
5. Serve beans over rice and top with salad.

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Apr 29, 2018

"Jazzy Vegetarian's Deliciously Vegan" + giveaway

Hello web-land!

I have exciting news for all of you!

I am one of the final folks reviewing Laura's newest cookbook, Jazzy Vegetarian's Deliciously Vegan [AMAZON] and am hosting a giveaway for a copy of the book to one lucky US resident!

For those not able to take part in the giveaway, I am sharing an exclusive recipe - one that hasn't been posted yet (that Google and I can find, anyway - please don't tell me if you do find it elsewhere; let me live in my bubble).

This will be the third time I am reviewing Laura's books. HERE is the first one and HERE is the second one. They both come with their own special recipes, so are definitely worth a look.

More in the great news department: The Jazzy Vegetarian Season Six will start on May 28th! Catch it on Create TV or on Laura's station: HERE.

The newest book in Laura's collection of offerings is Jazzy Vegetarian's Deliciously Vegan.

This is Laura's fourth cookbook and I could hardly wait to see what she came up with this time! I find something new in Laura's book with regular frequency, so for me, this was really exciting!

This book comes with a collection of Laura's Top Ten lists for things such as egg substitutions, two-ingredient recipes, cheese substitutes, etc...

And of course, my favorite thing in all of her books: the menus!

I am such a sucker for menus! I love to serve 'complete' meals and a menu is a great way to make sure of that -- all headache-free.

So that's where I started, the Menus. And this is what I found:

Yeah, I am  a brunch-aholic. I love reviewing brunch items because, frankly, brunch is hard to make vegan, with all the cheese and eggs that are usually involved. Laura seems to have made it with perfection.

And then I looked at the ingredients in the recipes and the ingredients in my fridge. We get CSA so we don't always have just exactly what is called for, so a bit of editing of the menu brought me to this...

So, "Wow! Weekend Brunch 2" was born.

And then I realized I didn't get blueberries this week, but I did get strawberries, so the cake turned into Strawberry Tea Cakes. Since dessert usually has to be made well beforehand, the cake came out of the oven first -- smelling amazing, by the way.

Next on the game plan was the Fabulous French Toast Bake. I bake all our bread (except pita and other large flatbreads) so this mal-formed 50%-whole wheat loaf was destined to become toast.

(Why bake bread at home: store bought has its own legacy of troubles, but for me the biggest is the plastic bag they come in. I can buy great, organic, wholesome, delicious bread, but they come in plastic bags. To save the plastic, I bake our bread.)

Unfortunately, I don't have a photo for the French Toast Bake due to cook's error.

Simply put, I messed up the directions (my fault, 100%) and the bake didn't look like it should have and I didn't want to taint Laura's recipe. In any case, it came out tasting great and disappeared as soon as I put it on the table.

The other main dish on the menu is a quiche cup. Zucchini season is already on us here, in San Diego, so these miniature quiches, Zucchini Quiche Cups with Rustic Bread Crusts, were destined to be. 

This is a really simple recipe but supremely tasty. My eldest daughter couldn't keep her hands off them! Nicely done, Laura. She is extremely discerning!

How about, instead of a fruit salad, confetti fries? See how my brain works? Not very logically, I'm afraid. 

The recipe, Colorful Confetti Fries, calls for sweet potatoes and russets, and ... (you can probably see where I'm going with this) ... my CSA brought me kholrabi and sweet potatoes, not russets. 

Nevertheless, Laura's recipes are pretty flexible and this one was no exception. Any root vegetable would be great here so don't be shy.   

In addition to the root vegetables being air-fried and the zucchini in the quiche, I wanted to serve another vegetable.

I saw this recipe in the book: Green Beans and Tomatoes. I happen to have both in spades right now, and the recipe was so easy, and looked so good, that onto the "Wow! Weekend Brunch 2" it went!

Isn't it a pretty color combination? Pretty food also happens to taste good!

To round off the menu, a drink is always appropriate. 

In fact, when I told my daughter that we were having the brunch, her first question was what kind of drink will we be having with it. Her usual go-to is a big batch of some kind of iced tea, but she was very happy with Laura's Green Julius Smoothie

To make up for the lack of a photo of the French Toast Bake, I offer you a photo of the complete Strawberry Tea Cakes. They are both spectacular dishes. 

As always, first I want to share a recipe with you from the book. This time I wanted to pick something that was not shared already and something that shows you that this isn't just a brunch book, it's also a lunch, dinner, snack, dessert book! 

It is full of healthy and delicious recipes that are easy and pretty fast to make. And each one has Laura's unique Jazzy spin. 

Take the recipe below for a spin, or have a look at some of the other recipes being shared on this tour:

Tex-Mex Salad Bowl  shared by Veggies Save the Day
Miso Parsley Humus  shared by Veggies Inspired 
Root Vegetable Lentil Trio Stew  by V Nutrition and Wellness
Lemon Maple-Cranberry Muffins shared by Veganification
Banana Pecan Coffee Cake shared by Vegan Nook
Potato Spinach Fritatta shared by Heal, Grow, Blossom
Sensational Stuffed Manicotti shared Finding Happy in Healthy

I am sharing this amazing-sounding Gingered Portobellos dish. After you get the recipe, make sure to enter the giveaway for a copy of Jazzy Vegetarian's Deliciously Vegan [AMAZON]  :


WinJazzy Vegetarian's Deliciously Vegan [AMAZON]
When: April 29 - May 7, 2018
What: Giveaway on Zsu's Vegan Pantry. [LINK TO HERE]
Who: US Residents only
How: Enter in the Rafflecopter below

Gingered Portobello Steaks

These delicious mushroom steaks taste and look much like a conventional steak, making a great substitute for a meat entrée. I like to serve this snazzy dish for dinner parties, but it is easy enough to make for a weeknight meal, too!

3 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided, plus more as needed
6 large (or 8 medium) portobello mushrooms, washed and stems removed
2 tablespoons tamari
1 tablespoon finely minced fresh ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1/16 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Line a rimmed baking sheet, large enough to accommodate a single layer of the mushrooms, with unbleached parchment paper. Brush about 1/2 teaspoon olive oil (in a thin layer) on each mushroom cap, then flip the mushrooms over and arrange them gill-side up on the prepared baking sheet.

To make the marinade, put 21/2 tablespoons of olive oil and the tamari into a small bowl and briskly whisk to combine. Add the ginger, garlic, maple syrup and cayenne pepper and whisk to combine. Spoon an equal amount (about 2 teaspoons or so) of the marinade evenly over the gills of each mushroom. Cover with foil and refrigerate for 30 minutes to 1 hour to let the flavors marry.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Bake the mushrooms for 35 to 50 minutes (see note) or until they are almost soft. Remove the foil and bake for an additional 10 to 12 minutes, or until the mushrooms are golden and becoming caramelized.

Let the mushrooms rest at room temperature for 5 minutes. Transfer each mushroom onto a cutting board and cut into thick slices, on the bias. Serve 1 to 2 mushrooms per person, with rice, quinoa, or potatoes and a green veggie on the side.

CHEF’S NOTE: Baking time will vary depending upon the thickness of your mushrooms. Thinner mushrooms will require a shorter baking time, while thicker mushrooms will need to bake longer.

Recipe by Laura Theodore, from JazzyVegetarian's Deliciously Vegan. Published by Scribe Publishing, ©2018, reprinted by permission. 

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Dec 6, 2017

"kitchen creativity" + giveaway

Greetings to you, the reader! I hope that all has been well with you and your loved ones; it's been a tumultuous past year, no matter what part of the world you call home, so I wish you all the best.

About Me

In case you are interested, a bit of catch up, in the next few sentences, and then I want to share a very special book with you - that is, if you are even the slightest bit interested in cooking the food you eat.

Current Events

My girls and I are in the middle of the Fall 2017 mid-terms at the community college, and it is intense. My son has been off this semester, having graduated with a bachelor's from UC Berkeley in Spring of 2017 and is awaiting the start of his graduate degree-career in film at USC in the coming spring. My husband is currently working from home (about a year now) and I am pursuing a computer science degree. That's about it - in a nutshell.

Future Events

I'll begin posting more in the coming weeks, as I am testing out a few things in the kitchen. Since going back to school, I just simply do not have the time to spend in the kitchen that I used to; there is just so much that needs to get done!

I preach balance all the time and part of that compromise involved pulling time away from the kitchen. There is family to be with in the midst of all of the chaos and that is more important than how fancy a meal can be. Occasionally, yes, all the time, no.

I *had* been cooking two meals a day (all by myself for the most part), but now, with this plan, the meals are divvied up more evenly among the family members. I thought the plan might be of interest to some folks.

Review - Kitchen Creativity* by Karen Page

As I teased above, if you are interested in cooking the food you eat, I want to share with you Karen Page's new book, Kitchen Creativity. You might remember that I reviewed Karen's last book, The Vegetarian Flavor Bible, and I absolutely adore it! Happily, I can't recommend her newest book enough.

Very briefly, the book is:

"..Karen Page and Andrew Dornenburg's latest book [is] an exploration of the culinary creativity of the world's best chefs, and profiles Chefs Tal Ronnen and Scot Jones of LA's Crossroads alongside award-winning chefs from the world's best restaurants like NYC's Blue Hill, Daniel, and Le Bernardin"

It is about being creative in the kitchen, in both small and significant ways. This is a very simplistic description, but extremely accurate. The best part of the book is that the authors explore all the dimensions and paths to becoming more creative in the kitchen, but they do it in such a way that you can choose how intensely you want to pursue this creativity.

Karen and Andrew break it down, step by step, and give you the tools you need to accomplish the goals you set yourself. You can either learn bits and pieces - such as how to season food or how to pair flavors, or you can follow their plan from Stage 1 (Mastery), to Stage 2 (Alchemy), to Stage 3 (Creativity), on your way to becoming a chef.

The book is divided into two parts, Part I: The Creative Process in the Kitchen and  Part II: A World of Infinite Culinary Possibilities: The Lists. Let's explore these a bit.

Part I: The Creative Process in the Kitchen 

This is the part where you learn how the creative process works and how to implement it. Based on the three stages I mentioned above, you are given the map from novice to expert. Along the way you learn how to master the fundamentals of cooking, how dishes we call classics today, were avant garde yesterday.  You will learn how flavors play well together and what makes a  proper flavor profile. Finally, you will learn how to cook with all your senses and how to create dishes yourself.

Part II: A World of Infinite Culinary Possibilities: The Lists

The second part consists of lists. But the lists aren't just lists; they are recordings of changes the world has seen, with ideas and opportunities to explore them or just delve deeper into a rabbit hole.

Within this part you will find lists of seasonal ingredients, seasonal dishes, mocktails, sensitivities and aversions, trash-to-treasure dishes, holiday dishes, nostalgia foods, salt-baked foods and even super bowl foods!


I fear that I really am not doing justice to how amazing this book is!

*Kitchen Creativity, (although not vegan or vegetarian), is one of those books that contains such important information, that to ignore it because it is not exclusively vegan would be a shame. Note that the book is not animal-centered and while there are featured quotes from non-veg chefs, there are no in-your-face animal ingredients. For example, I searched the list for "chicken" and, while there is "chickpea water", there is no list for the former. Karen is newly vegetarian and you can tell that is so by the content of the book.

How about owning a copy yourself? Karen and Andrew are offering to give a copy to one lucky US resident. The book is a beautiful, hefty, hard cover volume, reminiscent of The Vegetarian Flavor Bible.

Enter for your chance to win! Good luck!

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Jul 20, 2017

"the china study family cookbook" + giveaway

Ever since I earned my certificate in Whole Foods Plant Based nutrition, I've been excited about about WFPB cookbooks, and so when BenBella books approached me to review the new China Study Family cookbook, I couldn't resist. 

Del Sroufe has written his fair share of WFPB cookbooks, but I think this one is by far the best of the bunch. To make sure this book had recipes that were indeed family-friendly, I cooked up a few things:

First, I dug into the healthy portion of the book: salad. I made the Cobb Salad, and since it is so easy to customize it, this definitely falls into the family category. On top of being kid-friendly, it is cook-friendly, too. It was an easy recipe to put together. 

However, it is a Cobb Salad - meaning that it has multiple components - so I had to make the Mushroom "Bacon," which was actually easy,  and the "Buttermilk" Dressing, which had a reasonable amount of ingredients that are simply blended together. 

I added extra work for myself by seasoning and roasting the chickpeas alongside the mushrooms and roasting the corn in a dry pan (no oil needed) to bring out some of its sweet flavor. Extra work, yes, but I was in the kitchen anyway.

Then I decided to make one of the two frittatas in the book: Chilaquiles Frittata

This was another successful dish, one that the family really loved. The filling was easy, there is no crust (another easy) and the Queso Sauce and Corn Chips needed for the recipe were easy, too. I served it with salsa and extra garnishes.

A comment on the chips: they are great but I didn't use an entire recipe (of 12 tortillas made into chips) for this one dish, as the recipe indicates. I just filled up the pie pan with the crushed chips before mixing it with the filling. 

Then I made the Johnny Marzetti casserole, an Ohio favorite.

The Marzetti needed Cheese Sauce and Spicy Breakfast Patties. I really love the cheese sauce in this book and, in fact, have made both versions a few times now. 

The Spicy Breakfast Patties are made with millet and they worked beautifully and tasted great, too.

My verdict is that this book is one of the better WFPB books on the market; it is easy, relatively quick (it always take some time to cook from scratch) and everything I tried worked as it promised and tasted great. 

Because I loved the Cheese Sauce, I asked the publisher to be able to share that recipe with you and let you decide what you think. The recipe is below!

In addition, I am hosting a giveaway for the book! This one is open to US and Canada residents. Thank you BenBella! 

To enter for your chance to win just leave a comment and make sure I have a way to contact you. Contest ends July 31 and I will announce the winner in the post after the the 31st. Good luck!! 

Cheese Sauce

This healthy cheese sauce is perfect for both kids and grown-ups, alike. This is perfect for Nachos, Grilled Cheese or Mac and Cheese. (From The China Study Family Cookbook copyright © 2017 by Del Sroufe. Used by permission from BenBella Books, Inc.)

Makes about 2 1/2 cups

1 1/2 cups finely diced russet potatoes (about 1 medium potato)
1/4 cup finely diced red bell pepper
1/2 small yellow onion, diced
2 tablespoons raw cashews
2 tablespoons tahini
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
2 tablespoons arrowroot powder
1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste

1.      Combine the potato, bell pepper, onion, and cashews in a small saucepan and cover with water. Bring the water to a boil over high heat, reduce the heat to medium, and cook until the potatoes are very tender, about 10 minutes. Drain the vegetables, reserving 3/4 cup of the cooking water.
2.      Combine the potato mixture, reserved cooking water, tahini, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, arrowroot powder, and sea salt in a blender. Process on high until everything is smooth and creamy, about 3 minutes. Store the sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Jun 17, 2017

"the vegan air fryer" + giveaway

The Vegan Air Fryer cookbook is here! Air fryers have become quite the rage and everyone from Becky Striepe of Glue and Glitter to JL Fields (the author of this new cookbook) has been frying up amazing dishes using little to no oil.

Even I have an air fryer (or two) and I, too, have been wondering when a vegan cookbook will hit the shelves. As it turns out, my publisher, Vegan Heritage Press, published the first vegan air fryer cookbook, written by JL Fields of JL Goes Vegan site: The Vegan Air Fryer [Amazon, B&N]

I have a very fancy air fryer (combo dehydrator, toaster oven, proofer, etc.) from Breville (thanks to in2insight!!), so I was very excited to see what kind of recipes JL created.

Fries, of course, would top anyone's list of things to make in an air fryer, and JL delivers with her Seasoned French Fries (page 44). The fries are made using fresh potatoes and a few seasonings. They come out beautifully crisp and delectable.

Since I am using a combo air fryer I had to up the temp on my oven and increase the time a bit, but this has nothing to do with JL's recipes, and everything to do with my oven. If you have a Breville Smart Oven, keep that in mind, but otherwise follow the recipe and you should be golden - very much like the fries.

JL has a few potato recipes in the book, which is not really a surprise since potatoes are perfect to cook in the air fryer. So, I couldn't resist making another potato recipe, this time these gorgeous Hasselback Potatoes (page 90).

And then there are recipes to accommodate sides such as those potatoes or Onion Rings (page 80), Cheesy Dill Polenta Bites (page 74), Balsamic Herbed Tomatoes (page 68) or Fried Avocado (page 53).

Such recipes as Mongolian Tofu (page 104), Tempeh Kabobs (page 110), Baked Spaghetti or this Chick'n Fried Steak (page 128), adds to your repertoire of cooking main-worthy meals in your air fryer.

No air fryer cooking is worth its weight in salt if it does not have a great selection of appetizers and snacks. The Vegan Air Fryer cookbook has those in spades. It includes Vegetable Egg Rolls (page 40), Jalapeno Poppers (page 47), Air-fried Pretzels (page 57) or Buffalo Cauliflower, below, (page 72).

The book is full of recipes to use in the air fryer, including many familiar ones that I, for one, was looking forward to seeing in such a book. And then there are more creative recipes to make in your fryer, such as Breakfast (Pan)cakes (page 26), Szekely Goulash Pastry Bites (page 52), Corn Dogs (page 116) and Doughnut Holes (page 20).

How about you take a recipe for a spin, and how about that recipe being the Doughnut Holes I just mentioned? Try the recipe and then enter the contest to win your own copy of The Vegan Air Fryer by JL Fields. Contest is open to US residents and will end June 26. Please leave a comment to enter and BE SURE I have a way to contact you. If I can't, I will choose another winner. Good luck!

Photo by Michelle Donner.

Doughnut Holes

These air-fried doughnut holes are fun to cook -- and eat. Enjoy them for breakfast or as a snack. They make for a great dessert, too. (From The Vegan Air Fryer, copyright © 2017 by JL Fields. Used by permission. Photo by Michelle Donner.)

2 tablespoons cold nondairy butter
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons coconut sugar, divided
1 tablespoon Ener-G brand egg replacer powder or your favorite vegan egg yolk replacement
2 tablespoons water
2 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup plain or vanilla nondairy yogurt
1 to 2 spritzes canola oil
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

In a large bowl, combine the butter and 1/2 cup of the sugar and mix well, using your hands until
clumps form. In a small bowl or cup, whisk the egg replacer with the water. Add it to the butter and sugar and mix well. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix well. Fold in the yogurt. Mix until a dough is formed.

Roll pieces of dough into 18 (1-inch) balls and arrange them on a large baking sheet or piece of parchment paper.

Grease the air fryer with the oil. Preheat the air fryer to 360°F for 3 minutes. Transfer the doughnut holes to the air fryer basket. Cook for 8 minutes, shaking halfway through the cooking time. 

Mix the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar and cinnamon on a plate. Roll the hot doughnut holes lightly in the cinnamon sugar before transferring them to a baking rack to cool.

Makes 18 doughnut holes

Mar 23, 2017

"veganize it! + giveaway

I'm back for the third week in a row, and with another cookbook review. It seems that more than flowers are sprouting up for spring.

This new book is from Robin Robertson - another in the "win" pile! This is called Veganize It! Easy DIY Recipes for a Plant-Based Kitchen (AMAZON, B&N).

As always, Robin is very thorough and imparts tons of information in this newest volume. As the title indicates, this book turns non-vegan ingredients and recipes into delicious vegan ones! Robin starts with a pantry list then moves into ingredients to know and also shares a few basic tips and tricks. Then come the recipes!

The chapters range from DIY Dairy-Free and Egg-Free, Too, and Plant-Based Meats to Vegan Charcuterie and Instead of Seafood, to list a few.

I decided to test the book thoroughly and make as many of the ingredients at home as was called for in the recipes - because although Robin gives you basic recipes to veganize, she also assembles those recipes into a dish.

For my first main recipe I chose to make Cheesy Sausage Biscuits because I figured it would make a wonderful breakfast dish with some tofu scramble. This recipe includes DIY ingredients such as vegan butter, Maple Breakfast Sausage, nondairy milk and vegan sour cream. Although all of these recipes are in the book you can certainly use store-bought ingredients when you like. I decided to make the sour cream and the sausage:

The sausage was easy and quick to make and it was as promised: delicious.

The sour cream was just as easy to prepare and just as tasty. I used the remaining sour cream to make a salsa-ranch dressing. Yum!

When you add all these ingredients together, it makes this cheesy, sausage-y, fluffy and buttery biscuit. We all really enjoyed these! In fact, the biggest problem was that I didn't make enough!

The next main recipe I wanted to make was Cheesy Steak-Out Sandwiches. This recipe needs Vegan Worcestershire Sauce, Cheddary Sauce and either portobellos or seitan. I chose to make Baked Seitan Roast because I have a mushroom hater in the family.

I am a seitan lover and this simple roast was wonderful, especially in this sandwich.  I also made the Cheddary Sauce, which was equally amazing and brought this sandwich up another level.

Wrap all these scrumptious ingredients into a freshly baked roll and you have this perfect sandwich! If you are wondering if mushrooms would do this justice, I can assure you that it would!

This book is definitely an asset to your collection - or the beginning of your collection of cookbooks! It is unique and varied enough that the book is worth its price in gold. It has recipes such as scrapple, hot dogs, wellington, ribs, omelets, feta, butter, jerky, pepperoni, sea scallops, fish-free fillets, oyster sauce, kimchi, pasta, ganache, and the list goes on!

Robin has offered to share a recipe with you and since I focused so much on seitan for my review, I wanted to show you some more range and am sharing Robin's Clam Free Chowder.

After the recipe, be sure to enter the contest to win Veganize It! from Robin and her publisher. It's easy to enter - leave a comment (and be sure I can contact you, should you win!) Contest is open to US residents only and will conclude April 3, 2017. Good luck!

Photo by William and Susan Brinson.

Text excerpted from VEGANIZE IT! © 2017 by Robin Robertson. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved. Photo by William and Susan Brinson.


Oyster mushrooms star in this vegan interpretation of New England clam chowder made with diced potatoes, onion, and celery with a creamy, cashew-based broth. If oyster mushrooms are unavailable, substitute white button mushrooms, chanterelles, or a combination of both.


2 tablespoons vegan butter
8 ounces oyster mushrooms, chopped
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 celery rib, minced
1 garlic clove, minced
2 cups peeled and diced potatoes
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon dulse or nori flakes
½ teaspoon dried thyme
½ teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
2 cups vegetable broth
¼ teaspoon liquid smoke
½ cup raw cashews, soaked in hot water for 1 hour, then drained
2 cups unsweetened almond milk
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley

1 Heat 1 tablespoon of the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from the pot with a slotted spoon. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon butter to the same pot over medium heat. Add the onion, celery, and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes, or until softened. Stir in the potatoes, bay leaves, dulse, thyme, Old Bay, salt, pepper, and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil and then decrease the heat to low and cook for 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are just tender. Remove the bay leaves and stir in the liquid smoke.

2 While the soup is simmering, blend the cashews and 1 cup of the almond milk in a high-speed blender until smooth. When the vegetables are tender, stir in the cashew mixture and the remaining 1 cup almond milk. Stir in the reserved mushrooms and heat the soup for a minute or two until hot. Taste and adjust the seasonings, if needed. Serve hot, garnished with the parsley.