Monday, January 4, 2016

How It All Vegan (Cookbook Review, Recipe & Giveaway) #VeganCookbookLove

Rustic Tomato Lentil Soup Recipe - from vegan classic cookbook How It All Vegan - vegan & gluten-free - load up on veggies for a #healthy start to the new year! #soup #recipe

In celebration of Veganuary, a couple of blogger friends and I are giving a little love to our favourite vegan cookbooks. Seeing as the start of the new year is an optimum time to nurture better eating habits, I know that many people will think about switching to a vegan or vegetarian diet. And, even if that's not a consideration, we all want to eat more healthy, plant-based foods that are kind to our bodies and offer us the nutrients we need for our busy lifestyles.

Every Monday in January, Lisa of Viet Vegan, Trish of In Fine Balance and I will each share a look at one of our favourite vegan cookbooks. Believe me, this is not an exhaustive list - we are all vegan cookbook addicts and there are a wealth of amazing books to choose from. We are also hosting giveaways of a whole big bunch of incredible cookbooks, including the book I'm discussing today - How It All Vegan! Be sure to enter the giveaways below if you are in need of some recipe inspiration for this promising new year.


Now, a bit about How It All Vegan! Back when I was just a young thing with no kids, I lived in Toronto's popular Yonge and Eglinton neighbourhood. My husband and I shared a small, colourful apartment with our beautiful black lab, Bronte, and our beloved cat, Daisy. I loved that apartment and the neighbourhood. Our favourite thing to do on the weekends was walk up and down Yonge Street people-watching and checking out the shops.

There was an independent book store near the corner of Yonge and Eglinton (somebody tell me the name because I'm forgetting). Of course, independent book stores were going the way of You've Got Mail's The Shop Around the Corner. There was a giant Chapters/Indigo book store on the opposite side of the street and our favourite independent store was soon closing down. Not ones to miss a deal on books, we went in to browse the discounts. That's when I first spotted How It All Vegan, with its colourful cover abundant with delicious looking veg foods. It was a steal and I had to have it. It soon became our favourite cookbook and from there I went on to collect the other cookbooks that Tanya Barnard and Sarah Kramer put out.


My first copy of How It All Vegan was printed without an index but I soon learned to find all of my favourite recipes pretty quickly (recipes like the "Anything Goes" Fruit-Filled Muffins pictured above). My book is now full of penned-in notes and suggestions and the pages are falling apart. Fortunately, Arsenal Pulp Press was kind enough to send me a new 10th anniversary edition of How It All Vegan. I just need to transfer my notes now...

The 10th anniversary edition, printed in 2009, has all of my favourite recipes, plus a few more. It also has some new photos of Sarah, as well as a few scrumptious food pics of new recipes added to the anniversary edition. (The original book didn't have any food photos. Normally that bothers me but these recipes are so simple you don't need the photos for inspiration. And the retro-style photos in each chapter are so sweet.)

How It All Vegan is perfect for newbie vegetarians or even meat-eaters looking for great veg recipes. The ingredients are not at all intimidating and the recipes make for hearty, simple fare that you can share with meat-eating friends without getting any strange looks.



Some of my favourite recipes, the ones that I have made countless times over the years, are:

  • Brainless Banana Pancakes
  • Hearty Winter Potato Soup (oh my gosh, yum!)
  • Perfect Potato Salad (truly perfect)
  • Spicy Garlic Toss for Noodles
  • Sarah's Delicious Chili (you need this quick meal in your repertoire!)
  • Burnin' Butt Burritos (my kids love asking for these by name)
  • Savoury Shepherd's Pie (a little more work, but so worth it)
  • Spicy Black Bean Burgers (pictured above from one of our family dinners)
  • Easy Biscuits
  • Chocolate Chip Bars (my daughter makes these for her cousins - it makes a huge pan)
  • Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies (the BEST chocolate chip cookies ever)
  • Country Carrot Cake

There are scrambled tofus, teas, juices, smoothies, gravy, faux feta, chickpea nibbles, snacks for kids, classic icing recipes and pie crusts - just about every recipe you need to maintain a healthy and delicious vegan diet. Plus alternatives and substitutions, homemade non-dairy milks, homemade household cleaners and beauty products and even 44 things you can do with vinegar!

I highly recommend this book if you have a teen who has recently become vegetarian. The recipes are not at all difficult and I guarantee they (and you) will love them. That being said, this book still works amazingly well for us over these many years later, meaning it's suitable for the seasoned vegetarian or vegan as well. Looking at How It All Vegan again recently, I noted that there are plenty of recipes I still haven't made. I need to rectify that immediately!

The publishers were kind enough to allow me to pick a recipe to share with y'all. As it's winter and the start of a new year, I thought I'd share this warming, nourishing recipe for Rustic Tomato Lentil Soup. It calls for simple ingredients like garlic, carrots, pasta and lentils. The great thing is you can use just about any veggie that you have in your fridge.


The last time I made this soup, I threw in potatoes, kale and yellow beans as well. With the combo of lentils, veggies and pasta, you've got yourself a nutrient-rich and filling meal all thrown together in one big pot.


I like this kind of recipe because, if you do feel like making something else to go with it (perhaps some yummy biscuits), you can do so while the soup cooks. Once everything is in the pot, you have 30 minutes or so on your hands to do what you wish.

Read on for the recipe! And be sure to enter to win some amazing vegan cookbooks, including How It All Vegan. And, most important, have a Happy Veganuary!

Head over to read about Greens 24/7 with In Fine Balance and the Oh She Glows Cookbook with The Viet Vegan. And visit us again next Monday for more cookbook reviews!

Buy How It All Vegan!: Irresistible Recipes For an Animal-Free Diet 10th Anniversary Editionin Canada. Buy How It All Vegan! in the U.S.

What dietary changes (if any) are you making this month?



Rustic Tomato Lentil Soup



by Sarah Kramer & Tanya Barnard, How It All Vegan
Keywords: boil vegan nut-free lentils winter fall
Ingredients (4-6 servings)
  • as much garlic as you can stand, minced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 medium carrots, diced
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 6 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 28-oz can diced tomatoes, including juice OR 5-8 diced fresh tomatoes + 1/4 cup water
  • 2 cups cooked or canned lentils
  • pepper (to taste)
  • cayenne pepper (to taste)
  • 1 cup dry pasta (any short kind)

Instructions

In a large soup pot, saute garlic, onions, and carrots in oil on medium-high heat until the onions are translucent. Add the celery, stock, tomatoes, lentils, pepper, and cayenne and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes or until carrots are tender. Add pasta and simmer for 10 more minutes before serving.
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Win Some Amazing Vegan Cookbooks!


Arsenal Pulp Press has kindly offered to give one Woman in Real Life reader in Canada or the U.S. a copy of How it All Vegan! Enter using the first rafflecopter widget below until January 31st.

In addition, Lisa, Trish and I have partnered with the Toronto Vegetarian Association, vegan food writer Kathy Patalsky and Da Capo Press on a great giveaway for Canadian readers. There are six prizes total - a grand prize of Miyoko's Homemade Vegan Pantry + $25 Gift Card to The Toronto Vegetarian Association (to be redeemed at the TVA) and five other cookbook prizes. Each prize comes with a Veganuary wristband and a vegan starter pack of literature. Enter using the rafflecopter below until January 31st.




a Rafflecopter giveaway




a Rafflecopter giveaway

61 comments:

  1. I have omitted pork out of my diet. Also, I only allow myself to red meat at most once a week. =) More veggies for me.

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    1. More veggies sounds like an awesome plan! :)

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  2. Im trying to eat 'cleaner'; more whole foods and less sugar..

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    1. Me too! Less sugar is needed around here. :)

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  3. OMG - This was MY first vegan cookbook. I still have mine and yes - it is so well worn. Thank you for reminding me... and reminding me that I've had it over 10 years now. Good Lord! How time flies. Love the recipes in this book.

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    1. Time flies indeed Trish! Thankfully this book stands the test of time, right? :) Jo

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  4. This was my first vegan cookbook too! It was a gift from my boyfriend's mom and that chili recipe was the first actual recipe I learned to cook for myself after college. But my favorite vegan cookbook BY FAR is Isa Does It by Isa Chandra Moskowitz. I cook out of her book almost every single week. I love the bowls chapter the best, especially the pizza bowl and the queso blanco bowl!

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    1. I love Isa Does It too! And there are many, many more recipes I want to try from it!!!

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  5. I try to take every day as it comes

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    1. I hear ya! Yesterday I was Ms. Healthy and today I'm craving fries and a veggie burger. ;)

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  6. Love the recipes Joann. I want to try these out! A semi- reformed carnivor here:)

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    1. Thanks so much! Semi-reformed is good. ;) Jo

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  7. That soup would be perfect for today it being so freezing out. And I love the soup tereen.

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  8. This month I am getting back on track, amazing how much sugar was consumed. more veggies for sure

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    1. I think less sugar more veggies is a great start for anybody. :)

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  9. I don't have a vegan cookbook, but will try the Rustic Tomato Lentil Soup recepe

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    1. Please do give it a try and let me know how it goes Betty. :)

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  10. I'm packing a lunch instead of eating out!

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    1. Always a better idea for your health and wallet right Caitlin? :)

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  11. I'm working on incorporating more healthy snacks into my day rather than waiting until I'm insanely hungry and grabbing whatever I can find. The featured soup is now on my "Must Make" list for the upcoming week!

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    1. You are so right Jill. It's so much easier to eat healthy with a little planning...it's just finding the time. I hope you enjoy the soup! :)

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  12. I'm attempting to go 100% oil-free. It's a process!

    gaia at cinci dot rr dot com

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    1. Yes, I'm not sure how well I'd do with that Terri. I love my olive oil. :)

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  13. I've never owned a vegan book other than a green juicing book. However, recently, I have grown to love more of a veggie/fruit diet based and would love to learn more delicious receipes.

    thank you for the chance!

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    1. Then you are in for a treat. There are so many great vegan recipe books, and they really work for anyone, including meat-eaters. :)

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  14. This sounds delicious! I try to avoid gluten due to some intolerance issues, but I think I'll sub brown rice for the pasta. Can't wait to try it out!

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    1. Yes, rice would definitely work just as well Leslie. Let me know how it goes. :)

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  15. i want to eat more veggies i started craving meat while prego and still love it but i know i need to kick that and eamt more veggies

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    1. Those pregnancy cravings! For me it was always oranges, which is odd because I think I'm a bit allergic (when the juice touches my face anyway). I haven't had meat for 20 years so I would never crave it. We can definitely wean ourselves off certain foods. Next up, sugar... ;)

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  16. I didn't take steps to improve my diet this month haha, I'm on it though. The holidays have passed.

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    1. And that's okay too Crystal! We have to enjoy ourselves sometimes. :)

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  17. I am definitely eating more consciously.

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    1. Such a simple yet powerful concept Vera. Great point. I think sometimes we just randomly stuff food in our faces. I know I do. ;)

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  18. I'm eating much "cleaner", doing a bit of a detox so that means mainly veggies and fruits.

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    1. Nice! I'm trying some detox tea too. :)

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  19. Well right now my dominant arm is broken. But once I've healed from surgery I plan on switching from vegan convenience foods to whole meals made mostly from scratch.

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    1. What a pain (literally) Corrine! Take it easy. Hope your arm heals soon. :)

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  20. Yes--trying to eat more whole foods and less processed foods overall! Also cutting back on the sweet foods!

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    1. Me too! I'm trying to eat fruit instead of sugary foods! :)

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  21. I've cut my sugar intake way back.

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  22. I really hope to own a few vegan cookbooks in the next year! For now, every week or so I bake some vegan cookies :)

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  23. I eat at least two vegetarian meals a week

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  24. I love Oh She Glows, and my favourite recipe is the Chia Donuts!

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    1. Love that book too! Have yet to try the Chia Donuts. I'll have to do so!

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  25. We eat clean and primarily Paleo however I am adding more and more vegan meals into our diet

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  26. Oh She Glows is currently our favourite vegan cookbook. Our favourite recipes (can't narrow it down to just one!) are the enchiladas, the chia donuts and the pumpkin pie

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  27. YES definitely! I have been eating clean all month and feeling great!

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  28. I'm already vegan but I plan to eat healthier by cutting out the processed convenience foods.

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  29. I don't currently have a favourite vegan cookbook but I hear Oh She Glows is very good. I'm looking to add more vegan recipes to my weekly meals. :)

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  30. I've added a lot more fruits and veggies to my diet this month. It's too easy to fill up on junk and i'm working on changing the way i eat.

    - amber y

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  31. I have been a vegetarian for 31 years, I do need to cut back on some sugars. Have been trying but added more water and trying to alkalize my body.

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