My partner and I are moving in together soon and she is a vegetarian. I was wondering what vegetarian cookbooks people on this forum would recommend?
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Any of the Moosewood books; or anything by Molly Katzman, for that matter.
Two of my favorites I picked up on remaindered tables, and may or may not be available:
The Barnes & Nobel book simply called Vegetarian (Nicola Graimes consulting editor), and Smith & Hawken's Gardeners Community Cookbook, written by Victoria Wise.
Don't limit yourself to titles that are directed strictly to vegetarians. Many cuisines---Asian and African in particular---are heavily oriented to vegetarian style dishes. So you can pick up many insights and inspirations from those.
I agree with the Moosewood/Katzen call, and second KYHeirloomer's "Don't limit yourself" admonition.
To this I would add:
Search for vegetarian titles within Google Books (many books have previews).
Scour the Internet for recipes; in Newspapers, magazines, journals.
Go to the library.
Here is one of my favorite's:
The Higher Taste (http://harekrishna.com/col/books/VEG/ht/#List%20of%20Recipes)
Really tasty stuff...and easy.
As a longtime "flexitarian" (mostly vegetarian with a little meat thrown in from time to time) I find the Moosewood Cookbook recipes kind of dated and overly complicated. I hate the handwritten print and the flowery and inconsistent directions. Too hippie, crunchy-granola head!
One of my favorite veg cookbooks is Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything Vegetarian, The recipes are simple, highlight the distinctive flavors of the ingredients and are written with a clear, relaxed style.
I'm not too crazy about the recipes, at least not most of them, but the Laurel's Cookbook has a ton of very good, very well-researched nutritional information, that is not at all flakey, though the cookbook is very hippie looking.
An incredible cookbook, that is vegetarian but not written by a vegetarian, and with a completely unusual kind of cooking, and extremely inventive, is Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi. You'd never know the recipes were vegetarian. There is no use of fake meat, it;s just very good, healthy and extremely interesting food. Very tasty. Taught me a new way to cook.
The Vegetarian Bistro by Marlena Spieler is a very good. I'm not vegetarian, but use this book all the time.
Chez Panisse "Vegetables" and "Fruit" are both good books. though not exclusively vegetarian(I don't think), they provide mostly vegetarian recipes.
"Raw" by Charlie Trotter is an interesting book. I looked through it a friends house. Don't recall it being exclusively vegetarian. The recipes seemed easy enough I guess because you don't actually have to cook anything. Definitely "Veggie Porn" if I've ever seen it..... I may buy it just for the photographs.
As a 32 year vegetarian for ethical reasons, I have so many vegetarian cookbooks, most of which I wouldn't recommend and sorry that I
wasted my money on them.
My favorite, though not a vegetarian cookbook, but it has lots of recipes that I simply prepare it, adding meat to my husband's plate and
a soy protein to mine - is Cooking with All Things Trader Joe's (Deana Gunn and Wona Miniati). It has Persian Green Bean Rice,
Eggplant Parmesan Pasta and the delicious one that I made today for lunch, Tortellini & Chicken Sausage. Again, I used a vegetarian
sausage for my soup and a regular sausage for my husband and our friends. Every single dish that I've prepared using this book has
been an "ah" moment. Their pasta recipes are out of this world. I would be remiss if I didn't mention their Peanutty Sesame Noodle recipe. Wow - it's so good. I'm a 'hard core' Trader Joe's shopper and interestingly enough, TJ's never endorsed that book or had it for sale in their stores. Then a couple of years later, they came out with one that I bought - and never used - nothing in it tripped my trigger. (I Love Trader Joe's cookbook). I see that you're in Australia and TJ's isn't there but all of their recipes can be substituted by other brands.
I bought Crescent Dragonwagon's Passionate Vegetarian book after reading that the Clintons used to dine there and most people had no idea that her restaurant was all vegetarian cooking. I've owned the book since 2002 and never made a thing from it. I find the directions extremely difficult to follow, the variations confusing and "too chatty". I just want the facts and pictures. This one has neither. To be fair, 68 amazon.com customers rated it a 5 star, out of 80 customer reviews - so perhaps its me.
Ditto with Cafe Flora Cookbook, Catherine Geier, has more than 250 vegetarian and vegan recipes from the renowned Seattle Restaurant, their words, not mine. 16 out of 17 people at amazon.com gave it 5 stars and I couldn't find anything I wanted to make.
Moosewood Restaurant, "Simple Suppers" is very popular though I've only made one recipe from it and noted on the tortilla melt recipe,
"delicious, 12/5/05". Haven't made anything from it since.
The Big Book of Vegetarian is rated 5 stars out of 8 people and I found it unimaginative and see that in January 2006, I made their crispy sesame tofu cutlets and made a notation "yummy, had for brunch." That was all I made from that book.
The Spirited Vegetarian by Paulette Mitchell I bought in 2007 and have never made anything using that book. Though 4 out of 6 people at
amazon.com gave it a 5 star rating.
The 15-minute Gourmet Vegetarian by Paulette Mitchell is one that I only made one recipe from: pasta al pesto. Never touched the book
since and that was in 2007. Again, 9 reviewers at amazon.com out of 11 rated it 5 stars.
I think cookbooks are like movie ratings, subjective. Before buying a vegetarian cookbook, go to a bookstore and take a look at what's
on their shelves and see what looks good to you. I agree with KYHeirloomer's comment - "don't limit yourself" - there are lots of recipes that you can modify to fit your particular diet/lifestyle.
I'll second Bryant Terry's book. All the rage in certain circles seems to be Isa Chandra Moskowitz' "Veganomicon", which I've cooked from only a little -- recent purchase -- but I think it's very good, not the same-old same-old. I'll also recommend Dreena Burton's books. Burton is a bit more health-first.
These are all vegan books, btw. I'll also second Mark Bittman's "How to Cook Everything Vegetarian", which is not a vegan book, though there are vegan variants on enough dishes that it's worthwhile even for those who are committed to a vegan diet.
If you fancy something for a special occasion then Terre a Terre http://www.amazon.com/Terre-Vegetarian-Cookbook-Amanda-Powley/dp/1906650047/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1306836169&sr=8-1 and Vegetables by 40 french chefs http://www.amazon.com/Vegetables-40-Great-French-Chefs/dp/2080305115/ref=ntt_at_ep_dpt_3 are pretty good.
I use Molly Katzen's books, but I agree that the earlier ones are a little dated. I love The Farm Vegetarian Cookbook, but if you think Molly is crunchy granola, stay away from The Farm! The book Spiritual Midwifery, which I also loved, comes from the same Farm, but won't teach you how to cook, but how to have a baby. ;-)
Another favorite is Vegetarian Planet. I don't remember the author.
I second Crescent Dragonwagon's book. I swear by her corn bread (it's ovo lacto veggie).
The only other vegetarian book I own is Lord Krishna's Cuisine. Not too bad for a Indian lacto vegetarian book, and lots of content. It's a bit unique because it's food from a religious sect that doesn't eat onions and garlic, using asfeotedia instead.
There are a lot of good books out there. The one I turn to the most, like Cosanostra, is Veganomicon by Isa Chandra Moskowitz & Terry Hope Romero. It is great and I love the recipes. I also like the Whole Foods Cookbook. If you like any of their salads they make in the stores you will most likely find the recipe in their book. For magazines I do like Vegetarian times but I absolutely love BBC Good Foods Vegetarian! Hope this helps a little.
It's big and not always simple, but Yamuna Devi's _Lord Krisna's Cuisine_, on Indian veg, is a very good cookbook and written for U.S. conditions. South Indian food, in particular, is worth trying because you get a complete vegetarian cuisine.
I don't have any particularly great Thai books, but that's another route.
Generally, Mediterranean cuisines tend to be veg-friendly, partly because they're relatively simple and there's less "hidden meat" in the form of stocks, fats etc. than, say, French or Chinese. My partner is also vegetarian, and I have worked through Marcella Hazan's veg chapter and picked through her pastas with great success. You might also look for Greek and Turkish cookbooks -- I wish I had a really good one to recommend.
Hi there! I am a cookbook addict, so this is a great topic for me. I have one of Mark Bittman's other books called "The Food Matters Cookbook". There are plenty of vegetarian and non-vegetarian recipes. I actually think my favorite cookbook (it's actually only half a cookbook) is The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone. The recipes I've tried in it so far are fantastic! I also recently purchased the You Are What You Eat Cookbook by Gillian McKeith. I've tried a few soups and a couple of other things, and I really like it! It has VERY healthy recipes. Good luck!
- Vegetarian Cookbooks
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