Pakistani Lentil Balls in Fragrant Stew

I don’t know about you but whenever I’m at a train station and I’ve got time to spare I always come out with at least one magazine. A couple of months back I took my mum to see the Boomtown Rats in Manchester for her birthday and I ended up browsing the shelves in the WHSmith’s at Liverpool Lime Street. I came across a real gem in the form of a totally vegan magazine! In the UK there are a couple of quite good vegetarian magazines which I read on a regular basis but I’ve never seen a vegan one before so I snapped this one up.

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The Tasty Vegan bookazine is a cross between a magazine and a cook book. It contains 100 recipes and many of them are suitable for those of us that are gluten free! So far I’ve tried a couple of recipes from the guide. Firstly I tried the Polenta with Porcini Mushrooms which I ate too fast to take a photo of! It was delicious comfort food though. This week I made the Pakistani Lentil Balls.

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The lentil balls were almost like meatballs in texture and were a delicious alternative to dumplings. They were made with green lentils, potato, onion and spices and were fried before added to the top of the aromatic vegetable stew. The stew was made with carrots and green beans and was cooked in a red thai curry sauce. It was a dish that I never would have thought of myself and it was an amazing winter warmer!

To try this recipe and 99 others I urge you to pick up your own copy of Tasty Vegan. Watch this space as I try more recipes from the amazing magazine!

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Have you already got a copy of Tasty Vegan? Which recipes would you recommend?

March Cookbook Challenge – WeightWatchers Meat Free Meals Review

This month I have been testing recipes from Veganomicon by Isa Chandra Moskowitz & Terry Hope Romero and Weight Watchers Meat Free Meals. Here I will be reviewing Weight Watchers Meat Free Meals!


This is a mini book that I picked up when there was a buy one get one free offer in Sainsbury’s. Although I’m not interested in losing weight (in fact I’m actually trying to put it on!), the photos drew me in!

Introduction

This book is aimed at both vegetarians and meat eaters and is a compilation of recipes from the best of Weight Watchers cookbooks. The introduction claims that “there is something for all occasions” which makes me hopeful that there will be simple everyday recipes as well as something a bit more special.

There are some handy tips in the introduction on storing leftovers and freezing them. Very handy for people who are cooking for one like me!

There is also a checklist of some of the main ingredients used in the book which is extremely useful.

I was expecting some more tips about losing weight as this is a Weight Watchers book. Although I wouldn’t have been very interested in them, the people who this book is aimed at would probably like some more information!

Soups and Salads


I tried two recipes from this section: Courgette & Potato Soup and Carrot & Sunflower Seed Salad (pictured above). The good thing about the soup recipes in this book is that they only make one or two servings. Usually when I make soup I end up with a lot of leftovers! The recipes are easy to follow and use common ingredients. This is a great chapter for lunches! The Roasted Red Pepper soup sounds nice and I also want to try the Fiesta Bean Salad.

Light Bites

I had two recipes bookmarked in this section but sadly never got around to either of them. The first was the Rice and Vegetable Pot which I will be making for lunch at some point. The second was the Spiced Lentil Dip With Crudites. Unfortunately a lot of the recipes in this section included bread and/or cheese so it wasn’t very suitable for me. However if you’re a vegetarian who can eat gluten it’s very good!

Speedy Suppers


The only recipe I tried from this section is the Mexican Stir Fry. It definitely fit it’s description as it came together in less than 20 minutes! This section is aimed at people who need a quick but tasty meal when they come home from work. It has some really nice looking recipes in it such as Sweet & Sour Tofu & Vegetables and Goulash. I think it’s perfect food for families!

Family Favourites

I actually can’t believe I didn’t try anything from this chapter! It’s a fabulous chapter full of old favourites that have been redesigned. The Vegetarian Shepherds Pie looks particularly good and I had bookmarked the Lentil Bolognese!

Curries, Casseroles and Stews


From this chapter I made the Aubergine Madras and the Pumpkin Stew. I love this kind of food so this chapter was brilliant. At some point I’ll get around to trying the Lentil Curry with Crispy Onions!

Entertaining


My favourite recipe from the book came from this section! This is the Paella with Roasted Vegetables which is the meal that introduced me to smoked paprika (a dangerous thing!). A brilliant chapter full of recipes to impress! The Roast Vegetable Pilaf was calling me next.

General Comments

This is a good book full of healthy and nutritious recipes that don’t lack in flavour! It’s a good addition to your library for the speedy and easy recipes that can be thrown together with few ingredients. The photos are beautiful too, a great addition to such a small book. My only criticism? No desserts!

Previous WW Meat-Free Meals Posts

First Update – Carrot & Sunflower Seed Salad, Aubergine Madras and Paella with Roasted Vegetables

Second Update – Courgette Potato Soup and Mexican Stir Fry

Veganomicon Review

Monthly Cookbook Challenge (March) – Veganomicon Samosa Stuffed Baked Potatoes

As I own so many cookbooks I’ve decided to choose two books every month and cook as many recipes I can from both. This will hopefully mean I get more use out of them and try some new foods!

This month I’ve decided to focus on recipes from Veganomicon and Weight Watchers Meat Free Meals.

Veganomicon

images (6)This is pretty much the vegan bible in my opinion! It is a huge thick book and even though I’m gluten free there are lots of tempting recipes to try. I got this book for Christmas a couple of years ago and have so far only used it a handful of times. I’m looking forward to trying some more recipes from it.

Meat Free Meals

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Although this is a Weight Watchers book it is full of glossy photos that tempted me to buy it. I got it on offer from Sainsbury’s along with the Soups and Salads book from the same range. Again I’ve only tried a couple of recipes from it but there are plenty I want to try! It’s a vegetarian cookbook but as it is aimed at people who are trying to lose weight, dairy products are not used much. This makes it good for vegans too!

Getting Started!

I started my cookbook challenge yesterday by making Samosa Stuffed Baked Potatoes from page 60 of Veganomicon.

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This recipe is listed in the Snacks, Appetizers, Little Meals and Spreads section of the book but I found it substantial enough to have for tea with a side salad. The potatoes were crispy and perfect with just the right amount of spice. The recipe was easy to follow as well. The only thing I would have liked is a photo of the finished dish in the book. This isn’t essential though as it is a simple recipe!

Check back for further recipes from these two books! At the end of the month I will review the two cookbooks.