So I’ve finally come to the conclusion that I have too many cookbooks, I know, I know, I probably should have figured that out ages ago but I’ve only recently had to start stacking them since the shelf is too small. What can I say, I love me a good cookbook 😉 When the cookbooks you haven’t opened start outweighing the ones you have, you know you’re collection is too big. There are some fantastic books I’ve purchased over the years where I’ve had all kinds of great expectations of lavish meals I was going to make, but in the end have barely even cracked them. That’s not to say there’s anything wrong with these books, they’re great books! But sometimes (or more like most of the time) I don’t want to make a lavish meal, I want something that’s delicious, quick and pantry friendly. Which is why I was happy to add one more contender to the shelf, Everyday Vegan Eats.
This is the kind of cookbook I can go to again and again. You know, the kind of book that quickly becomes lovingly stained and worn from overuse. I had been following Zsu Dever’s blog over at Zsu’s Vegan Pantry for a while, so when she made mention that she was starting her first endeavor into cookbook writing, I jumped at the chance to get on board! I was already a fan of all the delicious creations she was whipping up on her blog, so of course I couldn’t wait to see what recipes she had tucked away for her book. With a focus on family friendly fare, Zsu’s book is filled with colorful photos and recipes that can become staples in any kitchen. Luckily I took photos of some of the recipes I helped test and I’m excited to finally share them.
First up, we have Classic-Style Benedicts. Are you shocked that I started with a brunch item? 😉 Although Zsu suggests using her tofu bacon, being the lazy gal that I am I used some store bought bacon. Soft fried tofu and bacon on top of toasted English muffins, covered in a rich tangy hollandaise sauce. These were mighty tasty. I liked that Zsu used mayo in her hollandaise sauce, as it adds a richness that was lacking in some other recipes I’ve tried. I would definitely like to try it with the homemade bacon next time, since as it turns out, the store bought stuff tastes like dried up salty cardboard.
It’s funny how I went from someone who had no idea what Pad Thai was to being someone who can’t get enough of the damn stuff! I’ll be honest and say that I have no idea what traditional Pad Thai consists of as I never tried it in my omni days. Whether it’s traditional or not, this has become one of my favorites recipes to make! Not only is it totally doable for a weeknight meal, but it’s filled with so many delicious things. Rice noodles, tofu scramble, bean sprouts, veggies. Topped with a squeeze of lime, salted peanuts and spicy Sriracha, this is one delicious recipe.
The Muffuletta-Inspired Salad intrigued me as I’ve never had a muffuletta sandwich before. This one took a little more planning as you need to make an olive salad and let it marinate, but luckily if you’re short on time, a store bought version will do as well. As it turns out, I’m a big fan of muffuletta-inspired things! This salad had so much flavor, with briny bits of olive in every bite. Delicious blackened tempeh, crunchy croutons and vegan sausage make for a filling and satisfying meal. Who says you can’t win friends with salad?
I was super excited to see a recipe for Greek Gyros in Tzatziki Sauce, as I used to love gyros. The recipe gives you a choice of making it with seitan, soy curls or marinated tofu, and as I’m always trying to get myself on the seitan band wagon, I decided to give it a go. The tangy, garlicky marinade for the seitan really helps disguise that wheat flavour, which is normally the one thing I’m not a fan of when it comes to seitan. It’s then fried up into crispy delicious strips and tucked inside a pita, along with some tomato, lettuce, cucumber and a homemade tzatziki sauce. Although I enjoyed mine during the winter, this would make for a fresh and flavorful summer meal.
You know what one of my favorite things is? Sandwiches. You know what else? Sauerkraut. Since the Deli Reuben combines two of my favorite things, passing it up would have been a crime against humanity. This turned out to be exactly how it looks, a crunchy, gooey, delicious mess. I went with seitan again and although I wasn’t a big fan of it on its own, within in the sandwich it was the perfect choice. Along with some vegan cheese, a homemade thousand island dressing and pickles (duh!), this sandwich made me one happy girl.
Last up is the recipe for Cold Sesame Soba Noodles. This is another dish that came together super quickly. I’ll admit that I was a bit hesitant about the amount of oil in this one, and I ain’t no oil phob, but once you mix in all the noodles and veggies, it ended up being the perfect amount. I really enjoyed the subtle tang the vinegar adds to the dish, and along with the toasted sesame oil it’s just so delicious! To heft this baby up a bit and turn it into more of a dinner meal, I cooked up some chili tofu to go with it. Many noms were had.
eeing as how I can’t leave you empty handed after gushing on and on about the recipes, you can enter for a chance to win your very own shiny new copy of Everyday Vegan Eats! June 15, 2014. Contest is now closed. Thanks for playing!
Congratulations to Gabrielle for winning a copy of Everyday Vegan Eats!! Her go-to meal sounds mighty delicious, and much better then my old standby of sammiches, it seems I need to kick it up a notch 🙂