Cookbook of the Week #4: World Vegetarian

24 Nov

Hello! I’m exhausted and only making a small amount of sense today, but I still wanted to pop in to share the Cookbook of the Week. It’s one I’ve mentioned many times before, Madhur Jaffrey’s World Vegetarian. The book contains egg-and-dairy recipes, but there is also a wealth of vegan recipes that are delectable and sometimes surprising. My favorite remains Farinata.

But I haven’t made Farinata in a while, mostly because of how much oil it requires. The holiday weekend may be a good excuse.

No, I’ve been loading up on the plethora of veggie recipes. Pick any vegetable in the world, and Jaffrey probably has several ways to prepare it. Today, I made my lunch entirely from her book. (Nevermind that I had “lunch” at 3:30.) My methods, of course, were modifications of hers, but oh my goodness are they worth sharing.

First up, I prepared my rendition of Salad of White Beans and Peppers.

  • 1 15-oz can cannellini beans
  • 4 tablespoons minced shallot
  • 1/4 cup cherry tomatoes, cut into quarters or sixths
  • 1 small red bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 small green bell pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • Ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley

Rinse the beans and pour them into a bowl. Mix all the other ingredients together. Toss and eat. I chilled mine a little before eating it. Serves 2 as an entree or 4 as a side.

Along with it, I made a variation of Butternut Squash with Sage.

  • 1 small butternut squash
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium shallot, peeled and cut into fine slivers
  • 10 fresh sage leaves, washed
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of sugar
  • Ground black pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 400° F. Stab the squash with a knife several times and bake for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool. When handleable, cut in half, remove seeds and stringy parts, and peel. Then cut into 3/4″ to 1″ cubes. Set aside.

Heat 2 teaspoons of oil in a medium saute pan over medium to medium-high heat. When hot, add shallots and sage leaves. Cook, stirring often, until shallots turn gold. Now add the squash cubes and the rest of the oil, stirring until the shallots darken. Add the salt and the sugar. Stir, adding about 1/4 cup of water. Cover, boil, and then reduce the heat to low. After about five minutes, remove the cover and let the rest of the liquid boil off, stirring occasionally. Top with pepper to taste.

The meal was delicious! If you like the flavor of fried sage, I recommend adding as many whole sage leaves as you’d like. I only used eight but wished I’d thrown in twice as many.

I sipped this along with my meal:

Don’t be scandalized. It was just water in a silly, novelty martini glass. I don’t drink alcohol.

And now I must bake for Thanksgiving tomorrow. I hope you’re all enjoying the eve!

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