Book reviews: Vegan Desserts, Blissful Bites, Eat Vegan on $4 a Day
In addition to my chronological blogging backlog, I also have a whole pile of books here that I was sent to review over the last couple months. It’s time to get started on those!
We’ll begin with the latest book from one of my favorite bloggers, Hannah Kaminsky of Bittersweet. The über-talented Hannah – she of the infamous Mocha Devastation Cake – recently came out with another tome of sweet treats, entitled Vegan Desserts: Sumptuous Sweets for Every Season.
This isn’t your average vegan baking book. Every single recipe in here has some sort of creative twist on it, from Persimmon Blondies to Chocolate Chestnut Torte to Watermelon Bombe ice cream cake, plus you get to drool over Hannah’s gorgeous photography throughout the book. As busy as I’ve been the past few months with my own recipes, I did make this treat for Matt a few weeks ago: the Black Bleeding Hearts on page 171.
Even though I didn’t have the right heart-shaped pans for them, these dense, thirst-inducingly-chocolaty little spooncakes were devilishly dark and delicious; Matt and I both gobbled them up. I can’t recommend Hannah’s new book enough; if you don’t have it already, you’re missing out on some of the most creative vegan desserts you’ll ever see.
Next up is the first offering from my friend Christy Morgan of The Blissful Chef (read about some of our hanging-outage here and here). Christy is a vegan and macrobiotic chef extraordinaire, and also one of the organizers of the Texas State Veggie Fair, at which I’m doing a raw food demo in just two and a half weeks! Her new book, Blissful Bites: Vegan Meals That Nourish Mind, Body, and Planet, has been a fabulous addition to my cookbook shelf.
Christy’s book is a one-of-a-kind treasure. The design is soothing and pleasing to the eye, the recipes are unique and outrageously delicious, and the photography is utterly mouthwatering. There’s something for everyone in this excellent book, from garam-masala-spiked Taste of India Artichoke Dip (page 59)…
…to luscious Peanut Butter-Like Mousse or Heavenly Raw Chocolate Mousse (both page 220), or this combination of the two that I whipped up! Christy’s book is ideal for anyone interested in food for health and healing, and is also perfect for those who simply enjoy cooking with whole, natural foods.
Lastly, I received Ellen Jaffe Jones’ Eat Vegan on $4 a Day: A Game Plan for the Budget Conscious Cook. Ellen’s book is packed with useful tips and tricks for trimming and maximizing your vegan food expenditures. She offers a game plan for the budget-conscious cook for an economically viable diet, including tips on financial planning for food shopping, a basic review of plant-based nutrition and cooking, and a look at the hidden food-industry politics behind grocery store pricing and product placement. Having scoured the shelves of popular supermarkets and big-box stores, Ellen calculated how to eat three nutritious, delicious, satisfying meals for no more than $4 per person per day, and each recipe is accompanied by the cost per serving. The recipes in Ellen’s book, I will say, are on the simple side, but I think they’d be great for a new vegan or someone just getting into home cooking.
GIVEAWAY TIME! Want to win your own copy of Eat Vegan on $4 a Day? There are four ways to win (please leave a separate comment below for each entry):
1) Comment below with your answer to this question:
What’s your favorite money-saving tip when it comes to food shopping?
2) “Like” Almost Vegan on Facebook AND Eat Vegan on $4 a Day on Facebook and comment below confirming you did so.
3) Follow Almost Vegan on Twitter AND Ellen Jaffe Jones on Twitter and comment below confirming you did so.
4) Tweet the following message:
I entered to win a copy of @VegCoach ‘s Eat Vegan on $4 a Day from @AlmostVeganChef ! #Giveaway here: http://wp.me/pYLdq-Ti
and comment below confirming you did so.
This giveaway is open to the U.S. and Canada only. I’ll announce a randomly-chosen winner at the end of next week. Good luck, and happy weekend!
THE CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED. THANK YOU TO ALL WHO ENTERED!