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Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone cookbook by Deborah Madison --Easy or complicated recipes?

Displaced California Foodie Dec 15, 2006 12:06 AM

Thinking of getting this cookbook for a gift--are the recipes complicated or relatively easy?

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  1. h
    huruta RE: Displaced California Foodie Dec 15, 2006 12:09 AM

    Most are relatively easy and straightforward. She has another cookbook, Greens, that is a little more involved but also produces very delicious food.

    1. cayjohan RE: Displaced California Foodie Dec 15, 2006 12:17 AM

      I agree with the mostly-easy assessment, but I would add that this book is very informative aside from the recipes. If your gift-recipient is a nascent veg fan, it's a great buy. If your recipient is fairly far into veg. cookery, he/she may already have it. Inquire slyly, I guess.

      It is a good book. Buy yourself one while you're at it! :)

      1. NYchowcook RE: Displaced California Foodie Dec 15, 2006 12:34 AM

        Mostly very easy.
        It's a great book, really. Great reference, and lots of good recipes, including my favorite little nut cookie.

        1. d
          debbiel RE: Displaced California Foodie Dec 15, 2006 01:37 AM

          Mostly easy, and my favorite everyday cookbook. I've given it as a gift several times, mostly to non vegetarians, all of whom report using it frequently.

          1. Pei RE: Displaced California Foodie Dec 15, 2006 02:06 AM

            This is one of my favorite cookbooks. Some people say it's too simple, but that's exactly what I like about it. The dishes turn out delicious, even though they're simple. And there are enough complicated recipes that if you're in the mood for a challengs, they're available.

            And it's HUGE. Something for every occassion. My friend bought me a copy and she and I e-mail each other all the time about "Madison's this" and "Madison's that."

            1 Reply
            1. re: Pei
              prunefeet RE: Pei Dec 15, 2006 07:38 PM

              Yes, Pei, exactly, the beauty of it is the simplicity. Everything I have made has come out well, and the results are more than the sum of their parts.

            2. heatherkay RE: Displaced California Foodie Dec 15, 2006 02:06 AM

              It was one of two the favorite cookbook of my geologist boyfriend who actually used tupperware lids as plates. So it definitely has some relatively uncomplicated recipes. I remember a baked polenta with great fondness.

              I agree though that if your giftee is a vegetarian, they may already have this cookbook. It's a classic.

              2 Replies
              1. re: heatherkay
                Displaced California Foodie RE: heatherkay Dec 15, 2006 01:30 PM

                What was your boyfriends other favorite cookbook?

                1. re: Displaced California Foodie
                  heatherkay RE: Displaced California Foodie Dec 15, 2006 01:38 PM

                  Jamison and Jamison's Border Cookbook. I went out and bought that one myself. It has a range of recipes from Northern Mexico and the Southwest. It's worth it for the New Mexico carne adobada recipe alone.

              2. c
                coconutz RE: Displaced California Foodie Dec 15, 2006 07:30 AM

                It is a comprehensive book so there are both. There is a large section that lists vegetables alphabetically and each vegetables will usually have several straighforward preparations with recipes. There are both easy and more complex soups (the lentil minestrone is fantastic) and there is a baked section that I've made yeast rolls from. It was indispensible when I was getting a weekly organic vegetable box. Everything from onion frittata(so good and simple) to goat cheese and corn enchiladas in chipotle chile sauce (a winner.)

                1 Reply
                1. re: coconutz
                  Smokey RE: coconutz Dec 15, 2006 02:12 PM

                  Totally agree with cocnutz--it's a comprehensive book, so there are both straightforward recipes that can be prepared easily by folks with little cooking experience, as well as more challenging recipes as a cook advances. But, all are good.

                2. b
                  bxgirl RE: Displaced California Foodie Dec 15, 2006 09:38 PM

                  So,what are your favorite recipes from this book? Are there any "must make" dishes? Please be specific.

                  7 Replies
                  1. re: bxgirl
                    misti RE: bxgirl Dec 15, 2006 09:52 PM

                    Arancini. There are three or four risotto recipes. I really like the mushroom one and then turn this into arancini.

                    Also really like her Vietnamese Spring roll recipe

                    Oh and I almost forgot. I LOVE the Lasagne with chard and eggplant. I make it for friends and they all love it --even my friends who don't like eggplant. I've made it so many times and have some standard alterations:

                    I don't par boil my noodles or
                    prebake the eggplant. I slice and salt the eggplant let it sit and then and layer it on top of the sauce. I've found that it turns out just as good and saves time.

                    I also add mushrooms to the sauce and cook the chard in the sauce as well instead of sauteeing it. Saves a pan and time.

                    1. re: bxgirl
                      debbiel RE: bxgirl Dec 15, 2006 11:07 PM

                      First, let me say that we have barely scratched the surface of the recipes. For me, this book is more of a basic guide, a reference book. Still, here are some (not all) that we love from the book and have made lately:
                      Polenta gratin with mushroom and tomato
                      Cauliflower gratin with tomatoes and feta
                      Butternut squash gratin
                      (Gratins and autumn/winter are a great pairing for me)

                      I make an olive linguine dish and a cauliflower with red wine dish that I thought I got from this book, but I don't see them now. I use several of the broth and stock recipes regularly, and go to the cookbook almost every time I get my produce from my CSA.

                      1. re: debbiel
                        Pei RE: debbiel Dec 15, 2006 11:21 PM

                        The winter squash galette is HEAVEN in a tart pan.
                        Cardamom cookies
                        Basic buttermilk pancakes
                        Olive tapenade

                        Those are just the recipes that I've made over and over again, and that I pass along to others; there are lots of other recipes I like but don't make all the time.

                        1. re: Pei
                          pitterpatter RE: Pei Aug 11, 2010 04:39 PM

                          I love the winter squash galette so much that I make only the filling on a regular basis and serve it as a side dish. The combo of sage, goat cheese and roasted garlic is one of my go-tos. Another winner is her upside-down almond cake. I don't have the book here, as it is as work (where I cook) but I remember making it once with fresh apricots, and it was gone in 60 seconds by moi and one other person. All of her sauces, entrees, heck, everything is inspiring and delicious, and the book is sooooo comprehensive.

                      2. re: bxgirl
                        NYchowcook RE: bxgirl Dec 15, 2006 11:22 PM

                        a little nut cookie.

                        1. re: NYchowcook
                          Smokey RE: NYchowcook Dec 18, 2006 01:25 PM

                          I LOVE the little nut cookie. Totally second this. Her ginger oat shorties are also good. I like a lot of her desserts, but I think she and I have a similar dessert sensibility (I don't like desserts that are too sweet).

                          Also, (to the OP) try doing a search on the book title or on her name. This book (with favorite recipes) has come up before, and I imagine you could get some good recs that way.

                        2. re: bxgirl
                          prunefeet RE: bxgirl Dec 17, 2006 03:53 PM

                          I like the indian style saute of cauliflower and greens, mujadarrah is a great quick weeknight meal (I add spinach sometimes), eggplant stew with peppers and chickpeas, I'm trying the lentil minestrone tonight, which comes pretty highly recommended too.

                        3. x
                          xena RE: Displaced California Foodie Dec 18, 2006 01:50 PM

                          Cabbage and Rye Panade, pg 278. Delicious.

                          1. lessleyellen RE: Displaced California Foodie Aug 11, 2010 03:53 PM

                            Winter squash flan w/ red wine shallot sauce!

                            1. greygarious RE: Displaced California Foodie Aug 11, 2010 07:54 PM

                              I streamline the Asian ingredients a bit, but I adore the Stir-Fried Roasted Eggplant. I have done the initial eggplant cooking in the microwave as well as the oven. The former is quicker and will do in a pinch, but the latter has the best flavor. I use the finished dish as a pasta sauce, bruschetta topping, bed for poached eggs, and omelet filling.

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