PeTA’s Vegan College Cookbook

I have to admit, when I first flipped through it, I wasn’t totally taken by PeTA’s new Vegan College Cookbook. It was lacking photography, and well, real food. Then I realized, I made it through college already and I did it with market and a Beer Store practically across the street – certainly a benefit when not having to live in a dorm for sure.
Where this book may occasionally cook directly from a ramen packet to a microwave, I think the book more than makes up for it in it’s simplicity, it is encouraging cooking and sticking true to oneself and beliefs – especially as the ultimate visitor in a processed food, meat lovers world. There are clever suggestions and quick recipes to fill you up all while keeping a limited budget and tools in mind.
The recipes are young and quirky, easy and cheap and with 275 of them, that can keep someone eating for just about every day you’re at school.

The people at PeTA were so nice to share and are letting me give TWO copies away.
If you’d like your chance at getting one, just leave a comment below by Wednesday, May 13th and I’ll randomly choose two winners. Good Luck!

My Sweet Vegan – Book Review

I was almost as excited when I was asked to review Hannah Kaminsky’s new cook book, My Sweet Vegan as I was tearing open the package sent with the book inside.
Inviting, fresh and bright, there are full page colour photos for every of the 77 recipes! Flipping through the pages there were so many delicious looking recipes I was ready to try.

Cooking vegan for my relatives, I almost always have a pantry prepared for just about everything. So, with one hand marking the pages of the many treats I wanted to try and the other preparing to grease my cake pans, I sat flipping eagerly, reading over each of the recipe ingredients. Sadly, I found that many desserts depended on specialty items like vegan eggnog, soy creamer, instant potato flakes or specific name brands like Ricemellow Crème. Without any substitution suggestions, my only option was to call around to the health food stores in the city or shop online. Either way, I’d be waiting to buy the ingredients, and if out of the city I might be out of luck for a while and that was way more than my urge to bake could handle.

Although disappointed, I did find the Bananas Foster Cake. Now, I don’t know too many people who wouldn’t love a banana cake and with five bananas in the mix, this one sounded fantastic.

The cake recipe was perfectly simple to mix up and the batter was light and fluffy. Although my baking time ended up a little longer that what was recommended, the cake looked delicious, even before it was doused in rum. I’m sure the golden and moist cake would have been more than perfect stopping right there!

…But Hannah couldn’t end her delicious dessert now, there was frosting and caramelized bananas to go.

Even though I’m not a fan of margarine, I opted to stick to the printed recipe. I had a tough time getting the frosting completely smooth and most of my testers (and surprisingly, my kids included) found the icing a bit sweet but admitted the caramel was a great combination with the bananas.

There is passion and talent all through this book. Hannah, who only just celebrated her 19th birthday, has has written a book filled terrific special occasion recipes and everyday treats. With all the photos and aThis is a book both you and your guests will love.

Now there are the rest of the earmarked pages for me to try. The tempting Pink Lemonade Tartletes, Pumpkin Toffee Trifle and the Silken Chocolate Mousse Cake are topping my list, I just have to wait for my order from the vegan surplus to come in.