Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Cookbookery: Trusted Faves.

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens.
Portland has the best library system of anyplace I've ever lived. We're spoiled with an awesome phone app that makes putting books on hold super easy, AND, they have pretty much everything--except for XXX adult stuff (and maybe even some of that too). Usually there's a wait for new books or ones trending on NPR, but I never mind. Plus, I get an email when my stuff's waiting for me, so I just tool around in the meantime.

I have a few beauties checked out right now, including the Banh Mi Handbook, which excites me greatly as there are vegan tofu and tempeh recipes, proteins in a caramel sauce I think would work with coconut sugar and SoyCurls, plus bowl ideas for the bread challenged, and even an edamame pate. Vietnamese food is one of my favorites, but I never go beyond pho and bun, so my hope is to whack through this book!

Thinking about cookbooks today, made me realize I don't talk about them enough here, which is weird 'cuz I talk about them non-stop in person. I have favorites that I love pouring over but don't cook from, and those that I have put through their paces over the years (even if I make the same things over and over again).

Here's a list in no particular order of some of the great books I've used a lot over the years. These books are sorta old school, but have really great staple recipes worth adding to your collection.

Authentic Chinese Cuisine: For the Contemporary Kitchen
Bryanna Clark Grogan
Favorites:  all the stir fries, breast of tofu, gluten-strong vegan meats, and lemon chicken.

The New Farm Vegetarian Cookbook
Louise Hagler / Dorothy Bates
Favorites:  biscuits, pancakes, melty nooch cheese, TVP balls, taco filling, and who could ever forget Uncle Bill.

Vegan Vittles
Jo Stepaniak
Favorites:  BBQ Ribs (one of my favorite gluten recipes), fajitas, muffins that taste like donuts, and chili bean macaroni.

The Spice Box: A Vegetarian Indian Cookbook
Manju S. Singh
Favorites:  masoor dal, aloo matar, coriander chutney, and mung bean kofta.

Madhur Jaffrey's World Vegetarian
Madhur Jaffrey
Favorites:  lemon pickle, Jamaican peas and rice, Moroccan split peas, and cilantro and mint chutney.

Nonna's Italian Kitchen
Bryanna Clark Grogan
Favorites:  lemon-rosemary breast of tofu, tiramisu, dessert crepes, gnocchi, and bechamel.

Classic Vegetarian Cooking: From the Middle East and North Africa
Habeeb Salloum
Favorites:  all the hummus (hummi?), mujaddara, and spinach pies.

Real Vegetarian Thai
Nanci McDermott
Favorites:  all the curry pastes, all the noodle dishes.

I know you know something I should put on hold. Spillz!


  1. I don't have any of those books! Also, hummi is the best new coined word

    1. I am sending you that free box copy of New Farm. <3

  2. Twinsies. I wish you lived closer.

  3. Ooo The New Farm has been sitting in a box at my family's book shop for months - I'll take a closer look at it - I think we have The Spice Box too. I use Jae Steele's: Get It Ripe, quite a bit.

    1. Oh! The Farm is such a classic, and the Spice Box just has such good solid staple recipes in it! Cool!!

  4. I love all of those books too! I lost my copy of New Farm but you've inspired me to request it from my library to remake some of my favourites!

    Authentic Chinese Cuisine changed my cooking life forever. Growing up in a small town in Canada, I decided that I hated Chinese food. Bryanna helped me reverse that emphatic decision pretty darn quickly once I started cooking from that book. That one is coming off the shelf now too! xo

    1. Cool! Sometimes I find old-school vegan books in free boxes around town, so if I ever find another copy of New Farm, i'll send it your way. Yes, I consider Bryanna my vegan fairy godmother. I wish her books were more well known, they are some of the very best! When you revisit recipes the lemon chicken is so good made from tofu! xoxo kittee


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