Thursday, 28 March 2013

Cookbook Challenge Week 12 - A Selection of our Favourite Recipes by Solihull Animal Aid

I bought this book several years ago and was never inspired to make anything from it. Boy was I wrong, this book is amazing, I have made 3 things from it and all were divine:

Cheezly broccoli bake - I didn't expect this to be great, its basically broccoli, potato & cherry tomatoes covered in a cheezy sauce, but it was actually brilliant. The sauce contained smoked paprika and leeks and turned this dish into something wonderful. I will definitely be making it again:

Sausage hot pot - again this was another simple recipe, sausages with baked beans & topped with potato. but the herbs & spices took it to another level and it was really enjoyable:

Vegetable soup with herby dumplings - out of the 3 recipes that I tried this was my favourite by far. It was warming, tasty, oddly creamy and just divine:

I am so glad I gave this book a chance, the recipes seem a bit uninspired at first but thats completely wrong, I have changed my mind about this book and can't wait to try some of the other recipes

Friday, 22 March 2013

Cookbook Challenge Week 11 - The Healthy Voyager's Global Kitchen

This week I have been cooking from Carolyn Scott-Hamilton's Healthy Voyager book. This book reminds me of Vegan Eats World in that it has different recipes from over the world. The four that I tried were:

No Toad In The Hole - This was quite good, nice and stodgy and tasted quite reminiscent of Toad in the hole from my pre-vegan days, I have used this recipe in the past using plain soy yoghurt instead of the silken tofu which worked well, however with the silken tofu it did not rise as well and was a bit less crunchy:

Yorkshire Pudding - considering that the No toad in the hole recipe usually works well, I was really looking forward to trying this. However it was quite disappointing. It may be because instead of making small ones I made 1 large, which turned out more like a pancake. It was still tasty though:

No Es Vaca Frita (Fried Beef & Onions) - I loved this, it was quite time consuming (making seitan in the oven, then cooking again with broth, then pan frying) but well worth it. The seitan was spicy and warming, and the lime juice/garlic marinade added a slight sweetness that worker well. I will be making the seitan again as I liked it so much on its own and I will probably be making the entire dish again:

The best I saved for last - Suthun' Biscuits and Gravy. This was the best recipe that I tried, I have made biscuits before but none tasted anywhere near as good as these and they were smothered in a creamy sausage gravy. This is will be making again:

Overall I really like this book, any issues are probably due to my incompetence in the kitchen  and I would recommend it to any vegan wanting to try international cuisine, as I stated earlier the book is similar to Vegan Eats World, but in my opinion the recipes are less complicated and a little more indulgent. I have already written a list of the other recipes I want to try (including the sinful Better Than Bechamel Macaroni & Beef)

Friday, 15 March 2013

Cookbook Challenge Week 10 - The Vegan Table

This week I have been cooking from The Vegan Table by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, I have only used this book once before to make a quesedilla (which was lovely) but I decided to make Hearty Stew, Split Pea Soup &  Hummus.

The hearty stew was delicious - chunks of tempeh, potato & vegetables in a herby gravy (I served mine with a Hasselback potato) - I will probably make this again:

Split pea soup is one of my favourite soups, this recipe called for green split peas but I only had yellow so I used those, the soup was really good (almost as good as the version from Low Cal Vegan Comfort Food):

The hummus was a bit disappointing, I don't think its this recipe in particular I just seem to find that home made hummus is always a bit of a let down compared with shop bought - it just doesn't taste as good:

Quesedilla -  I never tried a quesedilla before becoming vegan but after trying this recipe I realised what I have been missing out on, the recipes uses 2 tortilla wraps filled with hummus (shop bought in my case) and salsa, then pan fried. I tastes delightful and has become a regular meal in my house:

The Vegan Table is an excellent cookbook, with the exception of the hummus (which is more of a personal issue than a fault with the recipe) I have really enjoyed all the recipes I have tried and will be using the book again.

Saturday, 9 March 2013

Cookbook Challenge Week 9 - Hearty Vegan Meals For Monster Appetites

Hearty Vegan Meals For Monster Appetites (soon to be renamed Home Cooked Vegan Comfort Food) is one of my favourite cookbooks.

This week I have cooked - Roasted Broccotato Soup with Bacon Flavour Chickpea Croutons, Bacon Onion Biscuits, Raisin Corn Breakfast Bread & Real Men Eat Quiche Lorraine:

Soup - this is my all time favourite soup, its kind of like a roast dinner in a soup:

Bacon Onion Biscuits - I've never had American Biscuits before but these were great, like a savoury scone. I ate mine with roasted tomato & cashew soup:

Raisin Corn Breakfast Bread - I'm not usually a fan of bready things for breakfast but this was delicious, not too sweet with a lovely texture coming from the corn:

Real Men Eat Quiche Lorraine - I have lots of my own versions of Quiche but I thought I would give this a whirl, I was a bit sceptical as the recipe uses Cumin but it worked really well with the Bacon Flavour Pieces ( I used a Tortilla Wrap as the crust):

This is without a doubt one of the best cookbooks that I have and I will be cooking other stuff from it for many years to some, here are some photo's of the other stuff I have made in the past from it - all delicious (Chicken Style Noodle Soup, Lentil & Bacon Pot O'Stew & Ham-ish Saucisses):

Sunday, 3 March 2013

Cookbook Challenge Week 8 - The Sexy Vegan

This week I have been cooking from The Sexy Vegan by Brian L Patton.

The three recipes that I tried were the Pretend Italian Sausages, Jambalaya & Blam Chowder.

The Sausages were really good, they use potato to soften them and the flavours was wonderful, the Jambalaya on the other hand I really didn't care for - it tasted like tinned tomatoes over rice.

Jambalaya can be seen here with the Italian Sausage on top:

Now we come to the New England Blam Chowder. This was gorgeous, creamy and I will definitely be making this again.

Overall I do like this book, it has some unusual methods for doing things (such as potato in Seitan to make it softer and using blended cashews in non-dairy milk to make soup creamy) and I will certainly be using it again. I have also made a few things from this in the past - basic Seitan and the Fat Ass sandwich, both of which were a complete success and tasted delightful.