View Full Version : Veganomicon

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Jan 17th, 2008, 10:26 PM
Wow, I'm amazed at the difference in the price of vital wheat gluten. It's so cheap here that I don't feel bad about experimenting in my seitan recipes. However, the selection of vegan ice cream around here suck! I guess it's true what they say, location, location, location.

Jan 17th, 2008, 10:50 PM
your soy deliciouslooks far better than any of ours.

Though ours aren't that bad, barring tofutti.

Jan 17th, 2008, 10:58 PM
Hmmm. It's not nearly that pricy here in Toronto - I wonder what the deal is. Did you buy it in a bulk store or in a health food store?

Well I did buy it from a health food store...but I have never seen it in a normal market!! maybe I will look harder....our health food store is soooo expensive!!!

Ya Soy Delicious ice cream is soooo yummy! its a good thing that is kinda pricey too, other wise i would be eating it all the time!

Jan 18th, 2008, 05:41 AM
Check Asian markets. Sometimes they unexpectedly have good stuff like that at relativelty cheap prices.

Jan 18th, 2008, 01:40 PM
Pros: This is a very reliable cookbook. When I start making a recipe, I know that it will at least be good (as long as I follow the directions) and will probably be very good or even amazing. The omnivores I know happily devour this food (I live in the Bible Belt), including my fiance, who now eats vegan food about 90% of the time (he often sneaks off to Taco Bell or Arby's for lunch... grrr...). Many of the recipes are supermarket friendly. If you don't cook a lot, it will take some time to accumulate all the things that belong in an "Isa Kitchen," but they are all pretty basic things that you will use again and again (not too many weird things that will just sit in your cupboard for years).

Cons: Many of the recipes take forever to make and the time estimates are WAAAAAY off. Maybe I am just ludicrously slow when I cook, but some recipes take me twice as long as she says they will (we are talking HOURS of cooking). I am not working full-time right now, so I can spend hours cooking, but not everyone has this luxury.

Acorn Squash and Black Bean Empanada: ****1/2
I thought they were crazy good. Everyone else thought they were way too spicy. Fiance says: "They had a good flavor, just make them less spicy next time. No wait, if you do that, I'll eat them all compulsively...." They take a long time to make but are worth it.

Samosa Stuffed Baked Potatoes: **
I must have messed up the spices, because they were completely bland.

Broccoli-Millet Croquettes w/White Bean Aioli: ****1/2
Everyone loved them, including my fiance's baby nephew (1 yr old). They lost half a star because I suck at making croquettes (I try flipping too soon and they stick to the pan). I am a narcissist and feel Isa should have anticipated my incompetence and advised accordingly.

Sun-Dried Tomato Dip: ***
Basic dip.

Sweet Basil Pesto Tapenade: ****
Try using it to stuff cherry or grape tomatoes.

Hummus: ****
One of the better hummus recipes I've tried.

Sauteed Collards: ****
Basic but good.

Sauteed Spinach and Tomatoes: ****
Fiance thought they were a bit sour.

Chickpea Cutlets with Mustard Sauce: *****
As good as everyone says. I think this is the only Vegan food item (so far!) that I have craved the way I used to crave fast food. Not that it's fast-food like in anyway--it's actually pretty shmancy. I now often sit down to a meal and think "Why aren't I eating chickpea cutlets instead?" They are fast and easy to make.

Chile Cornmeal-Crusted Tofu: ***
It looked so good while cooking, but then it just tasted bland. Might have been really good with hot sauce, but I didn't have any.

Mexican Millet: ****

Mashed Spiced Sweet Potatoes: ****1/2
DO NOT just put the potatoes straight into the oven without foil or a cookie sheet as Isa suggests. Trust me. Or trust the burnt sap on the bottom of my oven.

Roasted Portobellos: ***
Too strong for my taste, but I marinated them too long and ate them plain. Probably would have been nice on a salad or as a burger.

Black Beans in Chipotle Adobo Sauc: *****
I served these on top of fried polenta (store bought) with fried plantains on the side. Absolutely amazing. Relatively fast and easy to make. Not too many ingredients. Soy free, gluten free, and low in fat (until you put it on fried polenta and serve with fried plantains).

Simple Seitan: *****
I will never buy Seitan again. This is so much cheaper and tastier, and it was actually pretty easy to make. Mine probably came out spongier than it was supposed to, but I don't care.

Spicy Peanut and Eggplant Soup: ****1/2
This is really tasty, but peeling and slicing five shallots makes me sad. For true spice-lovers, it's not very spicy (but ya know, just add more...). I started to mentally calculate the calories from fat in this soup (1/4 cup oil is 4 TBSPs, each TBPS has 120 calories from fat, add 1/2 cup or 8 TBSPs peanut butter...), but then I stopped because I want to eat this soup again in the future.

Eggplant-Potato Moussaka With Pine Nut Cream: ***
It was okay, but nothing special. I think other people had better results, so I probably did something wrong. It also took me about three hours (her estimated time was 1 hour 20 minutes) so by the third hour, I was expecting something REALLY amazing.

Red Lentil-Cauliflower Curry: ****1/2
My poor fiance was getting sick of washing all my dishes (I cook, he cleans). This curry used only one pot! Tasty without being too spicy (depends on your curry powder, though), this is a fun way to use parsnips, which I had never eaten before.

Skillet Corn Bread: ***
This is traditional, southern-style cornbread, I think. I prefer my cornbread sweeter and cakier.

Cranberry-Orange-Nut Bread: *****
Perfect for the holidays, easy to make.

More reviews to follow (since this is practically the only cookbook I use now).

Jan 18th, 2008, 04:17 PM
hmmmm thanks for the recipe feedback.

Jan 18th, 2008, 04:26 PM
I don't have this cookbook but have considered it.
I was reading a copy of "Bitch" magazine last night (a U.S. feminist mag) and they listed this book on their page of "13 favourite things" :D

Jan 18th, 2008, 04:41 PM
@ALexiconofLove: weird, because I usually finish the recipes in half the time.

The recipes in Vegan with a Vengeance took me a lot longer. But that also may be because I was just getting started with vegan cooking when I got the book.

Jan 18th, 2008, 05:07 PM
@pavotrouge: I am very new to cooking anything, let alone vegan food... so I'm sure that's the main reason! Also, I am a tad bit obsessive when it comes to chopping vegetables and measuring things, so that might be an aggravating factor.

Jan 18th, 2008, 06:01 PM
Wow, thanks for the rating system. We all have different tastes, but it's nice to know what works for someone and what doesn't. :)

Jan 19th, 2008, 12:28 AM
I'll definately be checking your list in the future, Alex :) That is if I can stop thinking of the tofu florentine and portabello salad. :p

I thought the prep times seemed long, but I tend to move quickly.

Jan 20th, 2008, 07:06 PM
I made the red lentil and cauliflower curry and the samosa stuffed potatoes yesterday.

The curry...absolutely delicious! The pototoes were a bit dry (maybe a bit bland as ALexiconofLove pointed out) but I liked them quite a bit, especially with the curry.

It also took me almost 3 hours to make those two dishes. This will probably be saved for special occasions!

Poison Ivy
Jan 20th, 2008, 07:16 PM
Tonight's tea!

First, the Chickpea Noodle Soup - this was gorgeous!


and pudding was the Lemon Bars - the perfect amount of lemonyness without being too sweet (lemon things that are too sweet really, really annoys me - but these are fab!!


Jan 20th, 2008, 07:23 PM
Wow...those look so good.
I have really been meaning to make the lemon bars, but have not gotten around to them yet...

Poison Ivy
Jan 20th, 2008, 07:42 PM
The chilling time with them is a bit long, but they're totally worth the wait:)

Jan 20th, 2008, 10:46 PM
the lemon bars look amazing!

still, I probably won't try any of the sweet recipes before trying all of the others, me with my jetlag-sweet tooth.

Jan 20th, 2008, 10:59 PM
Those look delicious Poison Ivy. And pretty too.

Jan 21st, 2008, 01:24 AM
my mouth is watering... mmm, looks delicious!!

the bf is making chickpea cutlets tonight.
eta: the bf was going to... but maybe I wikll tonight instead.

Jan 21st, 2008, 02:36 PM
Great pics, PoisonIvy...

I made the Broccoli-Millet Croquettes over the weekend - they took a long time, but most of it was inactive time, which allowed me to make other things at the same time. They were really good, especially covered in the Dill-Tahini Sauce!

Ruby Rose
Jan 22nd, 2008, 07:53 PM
I made the red lentil and cauli curry too on Sunday - my oh loved it, but it was a bit mushy for me. I like my lentils more... er... lentil-shaped.

Jan 22nd, 2008, 08:17 PM
I made the chickpea romesco tonight and had it with some pasta.
this is going to become a regular dish for me- almonds? check.
chickpeas?- check. tomatoes? check. chili?-check. booze? check.

one of the best things I've made from the book so far (and I've tried quite a lot):

Jan 22nd, 2008, 09:50 PM
Thanks for the ratings Alex! I like to cook with recipes that have been tried and tested already by someone else.

Poison Ivy, the soup and lemon bars look scrumptious!

Jan 23rd, 2008, 04:13 AM
Does anyone have experience making anything in veganomicon fast? Im really limited on time and would love to use some of these great recipes in the near future.

Jan 23rd, 2008, 06:32 AM
If I ever win the lottery, I want a live-in personal chef who makes these recipes for me three times every day!

Jan 24th, 2008, 05:58 PM
Last night I made the Creole Stuffed Peppers (sorry-no pics).

First, the time to make them must assume you have everything chopped first. Chopping the onion, carrot, and jalapeno took quite some time. It probably added 15 minutes to the estimate.

Second, they look divine! There is so much color going on and they come out looking so tasty.

Third, they were quite good but a little bland. I must say that that is probably my fault. I did two things that probably messed it up. The first is that I didn't realize I was out of paprika. The second is I got scared of all the jalapenos so I cut back on the amount by about a third. Really, when you chop up the jalapenos, it looks like way too much. It was scary! So, at the last second, I decided to only add some of it. Next time I make these, I will follow the directions exactly. I think they will be excellent then.

I found that on an empty stomach, I could eat three of the stuffed peppers, leaving five for leftovers. Your mileage may vary.

Those lemon bars look amazing.