I'll do a full review soon, but I haven't gotten my hands on a copy yet. Thankfully, my friend (and former coworker) Susan has a copy, and she threw a fun dinner party on Saturday night featuring recipes from the book. And she invited the authors! You see, Susan is the managing editor of the Memphis Flyer, the newspaper I used to write for, and Justin is one of the Flyer's freelance photographers. And Pam, another dinner guest, used to be a copy editor for the Flyer, but now she teaches journalism at the University of Memphis. Here we are in an Ussie at the end of the evening (thanks to Justin for the pic!). That's Susan standing in the back and Pam to her left. Amy and Justin are in the foreground.
For our appetizers, Susan made the Bagna Cauda Smashed Chickpea Dip. This was similar to a hummus but chunkier, and it had a lovely herbed flavor. Susan served this with pita chips and grilled veggies and olives.
Our salad was one of my favorite things! I must try this at home. It was Fresh Cucumber Noodles with Cashews and Mint. The recipe had plum vinegar, mirin, and fresh jalapenos, so it had an interesting spicy twang.
Justin and Amy are known for their inventive take on vegetarian hot dogs. Rather than use vegan meats, they use veggies like roasted carrots or, in the new book, grilled eggplants! Susan made their Italian-Style Eggplant Sausages using peeled Japanese eggplant and a topping of onions and peppers. These were AMAZING!
For dessert, she made their Frozen Peanut Butter Banana Pie. Another winner! This is basically frozen banana soft serve in pie form with a chopped peanut crust. We topped our slices with chocolate syrup. Such a healthy dessert but it tasted totally decadent.
At the end of the meal, Justin declared that everything tasted just like they'd made it at home! I can't wait to try my hand at a few recipes from the Chubby Vegetarian Cookbook. If you're local, they're having a booksigning at Booksellers at Laurelwood on Thursday, Oct. 27th at 6:30 p.m. You can also order the book here.
Oh, there was one more dinner guest! She spent the evening napping though. Here's Susan's dog Janet! Isn't she the cutest?