Friday, October 28, 2011

VeganMoFo 2011 #28: 'Vegan On The Cheap'



Vegan On The Cheap
Robin Robertson, John Wiley & Sons, 2010

Vegan On The Cheap


I've already discussed two other books by Robin, Vegan Planet and 1000 Vegan Recipes, and I have a review of her latest Quick Fix Vegan coming up. Today's post is about Vegan On The Cheap. I don't need to worry about food costs too much (not that I am living it up with mounds of truffles and bathing in maple syrup... actually that would be sticky), but I had to get it because it is a Robin Robertson cookbook! Plus it is never a bad idea to save money where you can. I recently learned on Twitter that Robin is a fan of Battlestar Galactica, which means you should definitely buy her books if you haven't already.

The book is a paperback and there are no photos inside. Chapters include:

*The Big Picture (talking about veganism and being a thrifty vegan cook, it also includes a 7 day menu plan)
*Cooking Basics
*Soup and Sew Savvy
*Satisfying Salads
*Noodle Know-How
*Skillet Sense
*First-Class Bakes and Casseroles
*Pizzas, Burgers, and Casseroles
*Slow-Cooker Favourites
*Sweet Delights
*Online Resources

I haven't blogged anything from this book yet, but I have made too many to put all the photos in one post. So I will post a few of my favourites from each section and then list the others at the end with my rating system.

Caldo Verde

Caldo Verde

I really wanted to make this as it has two of my favourite things - kale and tempeh. The tempeh is smoky to boot! It uses the Smoky Tempeh Bits recipes from the Basics chapter, which are some of the best things ever just on their own. This soup didn't disappoint. 5 stars.

Cincinnati Suburb Chili

Cincinnati Suburb Chili

This is a delicious and intriguing combination. I guess it is not that interesting if you live in Cincinnati. But the chili is served over spaghetti and topped with Cheezee Sauce, and when you put those three things together, magic happens. 5 stars.

Curried Vegetable Salad

Curried Vegetable Salad

This is a great salad to make ahead for the week's lunches. The creamy, curry dressing is really yummy. 5 stars.

Red Bean and Corn Salad

Red Bean and Corn Salad

This salad suggests serving with rice to bulk it up, by I took it to work with lots of avocado and corn tortillas. Delicious! 4 stars.

Linguine with Lentils and Roasted Butternut Squash

Linguine with Lentils and Roasted Butternut Squash

This is a beautiful dish. I used 250g linguine (instead of 12 ounces) and just over 1kg butternut for the 'medium' butternut squash. Initially the sauce looked a bit too runny, but it is absolutely fine and coats the pasta perfectly. 4 stars.

Penne and Broccoli with Tomatoes, Walnuts, and Raisins

Penne and Broccoli with Tomatoes, Walnuts, and Raisins

I halved the amount of penne pasta required here to obtain my optimum pasta to sauce ratio. 4 stars.

White Bean and Barley "Risotto" with Kale and Tempeh

White Bean and Barley 'Risotto' with Kale and Tempeh

Fantastic, everything good in the world in a bowl. This makes three large servings for Susan-sized appetites. The recipe uses more of those amazing Smoky Tempeh Bits. 5 stars.

Tofu Fried Rice

Tofu Fried Rice

This is pretty simply in terms of ingredients, but magic happens in the saute pan. I could not stop eating this. I served it with some amazing sauteed broccolini. 5 stars.

Cacciatore Noodle Bake

Cacciatore Noodle Bake

This is a delicious, big dish - I got 5 servings from it. I used a blend of tofu, seitan and tempeh (I had a bunch of odds and ends left over) and used peas instead of green capsicum. 4 stars.

Other things I have made:
Marinara Sauce - 4 stars
Cheezee Sauce - 4 stars
Handy Hummus - 4 stars
Smoky Tempeh Bits - 5 stars
French Lentil Chili - 4 stars
Bean and Barley Salad with Creamy Dijon Dressing - 4 stars
Roasted Sweet Potato Salad with Cashews and Kidney Beans - 4 stars
Tabbouleh Chickpea Salad - 4 stars
Quick Lo Mein - 4 stars
Coconut Curry Rice - 4 stars
Better-Than-Takeout Tofu Stir-Fry - 4 stars
Baked Ziti - 4 stars
Deluxe Vegetable Lasagne - 3 stars

What's your favourite 'splurge' food item?

Cute Kitty Photo of the Post

Dim Sim by Maryanne Oliver

This is the second painting that Maryanne did for me, and it is of the pretty red-haired girl with Dim Sim. I told Maryanne about how Dim Sim didn't like her sisters, but loved spending alone time with me. So Maryanne made this beautiful painting of the two of us sitting on the moon gazing at the stars, with no other kitties around.

3 comments:

loveorangesx said...

Yummers! I haven't seen that much about this book before so this was really useful. That cincinatti chilli over past is calling to me!

http://coconutandberries.tumblr.com

vegan.in.brighton said...

That white bean barley risotto looks delicious.

Emma said...

I love this book. I bought it when I was a student and really poor and it really helped me be able to eat without breaking the bank. I use the pizza base recipe pretty much exclusively from this book, and the cheezee sauce is so good on a toasted sandwich with extra yellow mustard, tempeh bacon and baked beans. It tastes like maccas. In a good way.

I'll sometime buy pure maple syrup as a splurge item but it always gets used so quick! Maybe I should buy one of those jugs you can get. When I splurge on food it's usually different kinds of fruit, like tamarillos (love them)or blueberries (so expensive!) I did spend $10 on a tiny bottle of liquid smoke. But you only ever use a tiny bit at a time so I think it's totally worth it. Something Nadine wants to find is chipotle chillies in adobo sauce. Never seen em.