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Showing posts from August, 2018

Cookbook Review-Part 3 of4: America's Test Kitchen-Vegan For Everybody

This blog post will appear in four parts, each part being a review of one specific book. Part 3 of 4  follows below:

The third review in this series focuses on a vegan cookbook published by America's Test Kitchen. People may be familiar with their television show or web site. I admit that I have probably only seen a handful of episodes. I was attracted to this cookbook, Vegan For Everybody, because of a brownie recipe found online. Honestly, the brownies were so good that I figured the rest of the book couldn't be wrong either.
ATK has a methodical and scientific approach to recipe development, very similar to Alton Brown if you are familiar with his way of working. The claim to fame for this book is that ATK has taken non vegan recipes and made them vegan, not through simple one-to-one substitutions, but through new cooking techniques and novel ingredient combinations. The book very much promotes veganism as a new way of eating, one that is both tasty and good for you. And time…

Cookbook Review #2 of 4/ Minimalist Baker's Everyday Cooking

This blog post will appear in four parts, each part being a review of one specific book. Part 2 of 4  follows below:

The Minimalist Baker's website was one of the first resources that I found when I began my research into a plant based way of eating. I experimented with an apple carrot beet ginger juice.  At this stage of the game, everything was brand new to me: juicing, macro bowls, bean burgers from scratch and tofu prepared in an infinite number of ways. It was all a little exotic and foreign, particularly the flavor profiles. I found Dana Schultz's site (AKA The Minimalist Baker) to offer a generous number of introductory recipes that helped me get used to some basic vegan ingredients and ways of preparing food.
Most food/cooking bloggers/authors have a "point of view" or a cooking aesthetic. There tends to be a concentration on categories of food (vegan, vegetarian, paleo, etc.) coupled with something a little less objective and more touchy-feely. Terms like &quo…

Big Trees and The Bigger Picture

It must seem like I write a lot about hiking! It's both a solo and group activity that I do once a week, weather permitting. Hiking is a great chance to get outside for some exercise, to explore the area in which you live and generally, to clear your mind.  Hiking by myself is great, I like the solitude and time to think, but I also enjoy hiking with other people. Specifically, I love observing other people. Listening to them, watching to see what catches their eye, and just generally being in someone else's company for a little while is very enjoyable.  

I think, too, that walking along with someone for any length of time and listening to them, provides a learning opportunty. It's a chance to discover something about that person and in the process, to find out something about myself. It's my belief that we gain insight into our own personalities (and our world)  through watching and listening to other people. I love getting the chance to see other people in action, to …

It's My Anniversary!: Cookbook Review, Part 1 of 4 -Thug Kitchen:The Official Cookbook

*This blog post will appear in four parts, each part being a review of one specific book. Part 1 of 4  follows below:

As I was getting ready to write this post, it occurred to me that I might be the only one left using a cookbook (dinosaur that I am!). Turns out I am not that old fashioned and cookbooks are just as popular as ever though the nature of their content has changed. This article in the Huffington Post explains that while recipes are basically free on the Internet, people are still putting down hard earned money to purchase cookbooks. Cookbooks these days, however, are not just how-to manuals. They have become a kind of food focused novel with a good story, good characters, and insider information. People who buy cookbooks want recipes but they also want to be entertained. Content is important. Buyers want the background on the chefs and the cuisine.  A cookbook can focus on a well known chef or a hot regional cuisine. Even a way of life or a diet fad can be a selling point …

Listen With Our Hearts: An Article and Some Artwork

Perhaps one of the hardest things to understand as an adult is how complex some issues can be. Human beings are complex creatures. We can both love and dislike someone simultaneously. We can break laws in the name of moral justice knowing full well that we are doing something illegal. And we can want to help someone whose values, reality or lifestyle may differ from our own beliefs. It's very complicated to be human. Things are not neat and tidy, very seldom are they black and white, and they almost never are static. Issues can be open for discussion and outcomes can often change long standing beliefs. As I said, it's hard.

So, it was with a happy heart that I read a recent article last week written by Billy Critchley-Menor, SJ and published in the Jesuit Post. The article highlights the efforts of an Argentinian nun to minister to the trans gendered community members in her area. It was good to read something both positive and uplifting despite the controversy of the subject m…