Some cookbooks are pretty straight forward and just give you the recipes with minimal commentary. And then some almost read like a memoir. Passionate Vegetarian is the latter. The whole book, 1000+ pages, is sprinkled with stories about food and the author’s life. It’s also a “joy of cooking” type of book where sections like “great grains” show you different things to do with quinoa, kamut, etc. I like these sorts of cookbooks for when you run across something a little unusual and want ideas on how to use it. While the book isn’t vegan, there are plenty of vegan or veganizable recipes. And the recipes are interesting, not the same old thing.
This past week, I pulled out this book and decided to make West Indian Rundown. Instead of using seitan, I substituted beef style TVP. I didn’t even bother to rehydrate it, just chucked it in the stew. We just ate it over brown rice. It made a ton and I ended up eating it all week for lunch. It was as good as I’ve had at a Caribbean restaurant, but it doesn’t photograph that well.