Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Isa Does It!

I've been eagerly awaiting the publication of Isa Does It, Isa Chandra Moskowitz's new massive full-color, photo-heavy volume of simple everyday recipes. I'm not sure what it is about Isa's stuff, but everything she comes up with is just gold. Pure, nooch-covered vegan gold. Her and Terry's cookbook collaborations are definitely the most well-worn volumes on my cookbook shelf. And I'm pretty sure the same goes for every other vegan in the world.

I waited until Atlanta VegFest to buy my copy because I wanted to get a signed copy from Isa. Here she is signing my book (or actually making a goofy face)!

I've only tried a couple of recipes so far, but both were FAN-FREAKING-TASTIC. First, I tried the Scrambled Chickpeas for breakfast, because, well, scrambled chickpeas!

This is an alternative to scrambled tofu (and there's nothing wrong with scrambled tofu, but sometimes a vegan gal needs to mix things up). Chickpeas are sauteed with caramelized onions and dill, served over toast, and topped with the optional miso-tahini sauce. I love a savory breakfast, and this was just perfect. But you know, without Isa, I'd have never thought of scrambling chickpeas. She's just so innovative!

The other dish I tried is perhaps the most beautiful thing I've eaten all year — Mushroom Hotpot.

Isn't it just too pretty to eat?! The broth is made from shiitake mushrooms, bell peppers, lemongrass, ginger, garlic, onions, anise pods, and coconut milk. And from there, Isa provides suggestions about what to add to your soup. I went with udon noodles, grilled tofu (recipe is in the book), cilantro, and sriracha. Sadly, some of my lemongrass was a little tough, so I ended up spitting out pieces every now and then. But still so very tasty and pretty!

Also, I learned from making this that I don't hate anise pods. I hate licorice, and I assumed I hated anise too. But I wanted to use the pods called for in the recipe because I knew they'd be so pretty in a picture. And honestly, it gave the soup a lovely flavor, like Chinese Five-Spice Powder.

I can't wait to try more from this book. I swear every recipe sounds like something I want to make, so it'll be hard to narrow it down. There's a whole chapter on bowls (Cozy Hummus Bowl, Cucumber Ranch Bowl!!). And a chapter on handheld foods (Baked Garlic-Curry Fries, Black-Eyed Pea & Collard Tacos!). And a chapter on stir-fries (Sticky Orange Chicky Stir-Fry! Seitan & Broccoli with Pantry BBQ Sauce!).

I'll have to wait a bit before I get into those recipes though. I'm headed home tomorrow night for Thanksgiving with my family. And then it's leftovers, leftovers, leftovers. I'm also declaring December "Pantry & Fridge Clean-Out Month." But more on that later. I won't be blogging Wednesday night, so have a happy un-turkey day!


foodfeud said...

HO yes. I have made a fair amount of recipes from the book so far but there is so much more I want to make!! Yr soup is gorgeous. Love the fat noodles in there.
I made the scrambled chickpeas too but without the sauce, looks like I made a mistake on that count.

The Peace Patch said...

It's already on my wish list. Goodgolly, the woman is a screaming genius at hitting exactly the most yumful and creative flavor combinations! If I could have one companion on a deserted island, it would be Isa. :)
Thanks for the review! Have a superfun Thanksgiving!

Sal - AlienOnToast said...

oh my god when this booked arrived at my house I was like a kid in a sweet shop - soooo excited!

I've made a few things and all have been excellent. Although I think most of the stuff I've made are actually on the blog anyway! hahah. That mushroom hotpot really does look amazing. I need a weekend where I can make a bunch of stuff from this book.

Cindy said...

I am committed to trying every recipe in this book. Thus far I've probably made 8-10. I figure it is one of my main projects for the next year or so. :)

Lynsi said...

Isa is just a genius. And this book is so freaking gorgeous! I haven't gotten tired of just paging through it and gazing at the wonderful pictures yet.

Kyleigh said...

You're right, Isa is a Genius!

I LOVE this book! I've made about 25 recipes so far and I just can't stop. I definitely want to try everything, they all sound so good.

The Scrambled chickpeas were fantastic. The Perfect pancakes, and carrot cake pancakes were great too for breakfast. The Garlic Curry Fries, Lentil Olive burgers, and Garlic Curry Fries were all awesome too.

Try the Seitan Mushroom stew, the tofu stroganoff, the butternut alfredo, the pizza bowl and the quinoa Caesar. All winners!

Sheridan said...

Awesome! I definitely want this book! I love it that there are chapters for bowls and stir-fries - that's practically all Drew and I eat! Hahah, so it would be great to get some new recipes in the rotation!

Unknown said...

[ Smiles ] She is an impressive vegan cook!

Pam @ herbieontherun.com said...

I haven't bought it for myself yet because I always try not to buy anything for myself this close to Christmas just so I'll have some things to tell people when they ask me what I want. haha This book is at the top of that list! A friend got it as soon as it came out and has been cooking her way through it and posting the pics to an album on Facebook. Everything looks AMAZING. I can't wait to get my hands on it.

Jenni (aka Vegyogini) said...

Isa is brilliant. Chickpea scramble is such a creative way to achieve a soy-free savory breakfast. This books is in my pile of gifts to open this holiday season, so I'll be flipping through my own copy in no time!

and_i_say said...

I want the book and the chance to meet Isa! She was too sick to fly to Austin, TX, earlier this year where I wanted her to sign my copy of VwaV. One day!