Thursday, November 15, 2012

Veggies for Carnivores

As a vegan, I sometimes forget that non-vegans eat vegetables too. I tend to think of veggies as "our domain." But of course, I know we all need vegetables to survive. Omnis like vegetables too. And cookbook author Lora Krulak's new book Veggies for Carnivores: Moving Vegetables to the Center of the Plate is a good reminder that, vegan or not, veggies are good for everyone.

This cute little volume is about the size of a thick owner's manual. You know, the kind that comes with a new appliance or something. But instead it serves as an owner's manual for the vegetables lurking in your refrigerator's crisper.

Her recipes are very simple. They tend to focus on one or two veggies as the star of a dish with only a few spices for flavor. She lets the natural flavor of vegetables be the star of the show. Recipes are organized into a few short chapters. There's one for sauces and dressing, another for broth-based soups, another for blended or raw and crunchy salads, one for small plates, and one for smoothies.

I chose to try two simple recipes, both of which seemed appropriate for winter. I made the Roasted Onion and Parsnip Soup with Curry and Hot Chili:

This simple soup is a twist on traditional French onion soup. Parsnips and onions are roasted and then simmered in a vegetable broth with curry and hot chili powder (I used a super-spicy chili powder that I picked up at the Asian market).

At the end of each recipe, Lora includes add-in ideas and variations. Some of those include meat or dairy suggestions, but she never includes those things in her actual recipe. For this dish, she suggested topping the soup with cheese like one would do with a French onion soup. So I topped mine with a little Follow Your Heart mozzarella. The sweet parsnips were a perfect balance to the nearly caramelized onions. And the curry brought all the flavors together (plus, it made my kitchen smell wonderful for two days!).

I also made Lora's Roasted Carrot Hummus:

There's no chickpeas in this hummus. Instead, roasted carrots are blended with tahini, garlic, and onions for a delicious spread. The sweetness of the carrots adds a lovely flavor. Plus, it's nice to sneak veggies into hummus since I tend to eat way more protein than veggies.

These two dishes were delicious, and I have my sights set on a few more. I've bookmarked the Roasted Root Fries (made with beets!), Cauliflower Steak with Harissa Sauce (you had me at "steak"), and the Secret Guacamole (it has celery, maple syrup, and red peppers in it!).

No matter your dietary lifestyle, we could probably all use a little veggie boost in our lives. Lora's book can help!


Angelic Rodgers said...

Speaking of Cauliflower Steaks, the Capitol Bar and Grill in LR does one as their entree (unless they have swapped it out for another dish). I suspect it's not fully vegan (the potatoes under it probably have dairy and the batter likely has eggs), but it is pretty awesome! I know you're going to be here for the Green Store signing tomorrow :)

dreaminitvegan said...

Wow that sounds like a great book to give to family and friends. I do have some carnivore friends and my sister-in-law and her daughter that the only vegetables they eat are lettuce, tomato and broccoli, oh and the starchy veggies like white potato and corn. There are quite a few people still that are heavy on the animal meat and potatoes type of diet still.

FoodandLoathing said...

Carrot hummus... hmmmm! Interesting. But if I made my hummus with carrots, it wouldn't make sense for me to eat my hummus with carrots anymore. :-0

Lesley Eats said...

Carrot hummus. Genius!

lora said...

Bianca, thank you so much for your review! I loved reading it and so happy to hear you enjoyed the recipes!

Foodandloating - try dipping celery or fennel in the carrot humos instead!

Dreamitvegan - I love how you say "I have some carnivore freinds" hahahaha

Melomeals said...

Yum! The carrot hummus sounds delicious.. great concept for a book

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