Sunday, January 16, 2011

PPK Cook Book Challenge Week 1 - Appetite for Reduction

So, my fine friends over at the PPK (Post Punk Kitchen) revived one of my favorite challenges - the Cook Book Challenge. Each week a different fabulous vegan cook book is featured. This is an excellent excuse to dust off some old favorites and maybe even buy a few new cook books. I had most of the books for the challenge, but I have to let you in on a little secret, I didn't have 3 of them. As I am a true cook book addict, I promptly ordered Eat Drink and Be Vegan, Urban Vegan and 500 Vegan Recipes. It's been a while since I've ordered any new books, so it felt so sinfullly good. I'm still smiling and anxiously awaiting their delivery.

Each week we are challenged to make a minimum of 3 recipes from each book. This may seem like a lot, but really, you can get three recipes in one single meal if you make sides and sauces. Below is a list of the books featured each week. Click here to see the original post on the PPK.

January 10 - Appetite for Reduction

January 17 - Veganomicon
January 24 - Urban Vegan
January 31 - Vegan with a Vengeance
February 7 - Eat, Drink & Be Vegan
February 14 - FREE choice week - Choose any cookbook. Dessert cookbook will be Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World or other.
February 21 - 500 Vegan Recipes
February 28 - American Vegan Kitchen
March 7 - Yellow Rose Recipes
March 14 - Viva Vegan
March 21 - Vegan Brunch
March 28 - Final Week! Free choice - choose any cookbook. Dessert cookbook will be Vegan cookies Invade your Cookie Jar or other.

There aren't really any rules other than at the beginning of each week, we will post a thread for the week. You can post your results as well as any pictures. If you have any questions, feel free to post them.

So now go figure out what you are making and create your shopping list!

This week Appetite for Reduction by Isa Chandra Moskowicz is the featured book. I was a tester for this book, so I had previously made a boat load of the recipes. I can tell you that most of the recipes are very filling, tasty and fairly easy. A healthy eater's dream. Fred got in on the action too! He made his version of the Lotsa Veggie Lentil soup. He did sub red lentils for the French lentils with excellent results. I felt healthier just looking at this beautiful bowl!

My selections were not nearly as colorful, but you want to talk about huge flavor! Pow! I combined three AFR recipes: Ethiopian Millet, Mushroom Tibs and Ye'abesha Gomen. They all had a similar flavor/spice profile and were really nice together. We used Madras Curry and Penzy's half sharp Hungarian Paprika with great results. I have to say I really loved the millet and the mushrooms together. I felt they balanced each other perfectly. The greens were good, but a tad bitter. We were absolutely stuffed. As you can see the plates were really piled up. The cool thing? Only about 520 calories if you ate the whole thing. Neither of us was able to finish the whole plate. So yes, Virginia, you can eat a huge plate full of food and feel full and guilt free.

That is the beauty of this book. Isa has found a way to make low-fat high-awesome. No surprise! Another really wonderful feature of this book is that she teamed up with a dietician who takes time to explain some nutritional basics in a very easy to understand format. If you are looking to lose weight (without feeling deprived), learn more about nutrition or just eat healthier, this is a book you should own.

Come back next week when I'll be featuring another Isa masterpiece - Veganomicon


  1. I have beek cooking up a storm out of this book too! Though just on my own little challenge. I made the lentil soup last night (yummy), and I made the millet/mushrooms/greens combination last week. It was awesome! Though I think my curry powder must be strong because it was rather spicy. ;)

  2. I usually use a spicy curry powder, but this time I tried a nice mild one that I had and it was very good.

    Love this book too!