Monday, July 10, 2006

It's Finally Here! My First Cookbook Review

Yes, the much promised cookbook review is finally here my friends. First, some pictures. (I know I have more somewhere but they seem to have disappeared. Hmmphh.)

This is what my copy looks like. Of course, if you buy it brand new, it will look brand new, but what's the fun in that? By the way, I did not pay for my copy, our friend Camille gave it to me (Brand new, the damage was of my doing).

This is the Cilantro Vinaigrette. Yummy, but obviously not for cilantro haters (I'll have you know Susan does not like this dressing).

The Very Best Tofu Cakes (In this case, The Very Best Tofu Cake)

Eternal Soup. This recipe is made in a crockpot with dehydrated beans, stock, whatever vegetables you have on hand, whatever tomato product you have on hand, and water to cover. Alas, when I made it, I used hot salsa as the tomato product, and it was a wee bit too spicy for me.

The last but certainly not least picture is my beloved Old-Fashioned, All-Day, Baked Beans, Boston (Mountain)-Style, with a big chunk of Steamed Brown Boston Mountains Bread.

All right, now that the pictures have been looked at, a little about the book.

This was my first vegetarian cookbook, and I can remember how excited I was while I looked over it for the first time. I mean, this is a big, big book containing over 1,000 recipes, and the names of the recipes are enough to get any foodie excited. Some examples are: Morocc'n'roll Oven-Roasted Carrot Spread, Roasted Carrot Spread with Fresh Ginger and Curry (sooo amazing!), Oven-Roasted Shiitake Mushrooms with Garlic and Coarse Salt, Four-Star Fresh Basil-Lemon Dressing with Tofu-Tomato Cream (one of my fave dressings), Beet and Orange Salad with Rainforest Vinaigrette, Roasted Red Pepper Soup with a Cilantro-Jalapeno Swirl, Gingered Curry of Carrot Soup with Bell Peppers, Wendy's Pumpkin Apple Soup with Curry and Coconut Milk, Peppery Pedregon Potato-Celery Root Soup, Lunar Gazpacho, Posole-Bean Soup Stew with New World Vegetables, Deep December Ragout of Seitan, Shiitakes, and Winter Vegetables, Gingered East-West Three-Bean and Vegetable Stew, Curried Lentil-Potato Cobbler with Pumpkin and Tomatoes and Filo Top Crust, Spinach and Wheat Berry Tofu Quiche in a Hashed Brown Potato Crust, Vegan-French Style Gratin of Butternut Squash, Jamaican Curried Vegetable Patties in Tortilla Wraps, Red Bell Peppers Stuffed with Green Chile, Corn, and Hominy, Tomatoes Stuffed with Cornbread Dressing and Gravy, Southwestern Succotash with Barley and Green Chilies, Full Moon Pumpkin Pilaf with Toasted Millet, Incan Quinoa-Corn-Potato Ri-sort-of, Casserole of Slow-Cooked Calypso Beans with Orange and Onion, Comforting Corn Chowder with Green Soybeans and Potatoes, Double-Tempeh Stir-Fry with Yam, Apples, and Honey (or agave) Mustard, Tempeh au Poivre, Broccoli, Potatoes, and Tofu in Golden Peanut-Miso Velvet, Greek-Style Green Beans, Brown Sugar-Glazed Beets with Fresh Kumquats, Essence of Greens Tart with Fresh Herbs, Ned's Frizzled Shiitakes, Deviled Summer Squash Casserole, Herb-Frizzled Cherry Tomatoes, Parsnip-Barley Burgers, Dragon Salt, Bread Herbs for Dipping, Basic Fresh Summer Salsa, Pico de Gallo-Style, and loads more.

Ahem. Uh, I may have gotten a bit carried away, but the point I'm trying to make is this cookbook is amazing. The flavors are there, the visual appeal is there, and the names are there. There's a whole chapter devoted to quick fixes for when there's not a lot of time, and there's also a dessert chapter involving fruit on it's own as well as cakes and such.

Just so everyone knows, there's not a recipe in the book (that I've made so far, I still have quite a few recipes left to make) that hasn't been delicious. This book is not vegan, but there are vegan options for many recipes, and most of the recipes are vegan by default anyway.

Here's Crescent Dragonwagon's website if you want to learn more about her.

Now go out and buy this book!


KleoPatra said...

i have that book!!!

i love Crescent... she is such a survivor!!!!!!

Thanks for the review, it was interesting to be sure.

funwithyourfood said...

good review.
Looks like you LOVE that book :)


Essie said...

Hi! After checking out many many books from our local library I only bought two: Passionate Vegetarian and Linda McCartney's International Veggie cookbook. I find I don't use either books as much as I should but Cresent's book has many basic info on how to prepare certain veggies I had never cooked before.

Courtney said...

Great review! I will have to check my library and see if they have a copy...I am excited now!



vegancore said...

I have this book, but have only ever made one or two things from it. I love how it has sections for each individual fruit and vegetable. I love reading cookbook reviews - I'm definitely looking forward to the next one!

Melody said...

I first hear of Cresent Dragonwagon when I bought her Soup and Bread cookbook at the local thrift shop.. I loved her writing style and everything about the cookbook.. I had no idea she was vegan friendly or even vegetarian til I looked her up on the web (because I loved the book I scored at the thrift shop).. I was thrilled to buy her Passoniate Vegetarian book... I haven't made a recipe from it, but I really enjoy reading it and some of my recipes have definitely been inspired by it.. one of these days, I need to actually follow a recipe.