I have been an ovo-lacto vegetarian since the age of eleven. I decided one day that I was never eating meat again. For whatever reason… (my older brother told me where veal came from) I stuck to it. Here I am almost 20 years later and I still have yet to eat meat. One time I tried shrimp, but the texture freaked me out. I never bothered trying to go back to meat again. I’m not opposed to meat-eating, honestly, as long as it’s done with respect and knowledge. It’s just a personal choice, for me.
My boys all eat meat, but in general we’re an “all in moderation” family. I must say that our rustic and down-home style was not at all ruffled by introducing the recipes from the cookbook “Vegan Family Meals”. The dishes featured in this cookbook are elegant and classy, yet simple and healthy. These recipes are perfect for summer as some are rich and decadent without being heavy, others are perfectly light.
I can imagine this book will easily transition through fall, particularly with the extensive soup recipes included. Yes, 14 soups if I counted correctly. Fourteen soups?! I love that! Soup is one of my favorite things in the world and one of the first things that I perfected in the kitchen. Making soup is how I learned contrast and balance of flavor (texture too but not as much as flavor) at its most basic element. I love soup. It’s hearty and satisfying without bulk. Soup can hide vegetables and disguise them for your children, which I love. Make some bread or biscuits and you have yourself a meal. Not to mention it (soup in general) freezes amazingly well, which is always handy. I definitely identified with Ann as she described soup as, “…what your kids will miss when they’re away from home.” My kids have yet to leave home, but I will always remember the day my son, Trey (now 4 years old – pickiest age ever) sat down with me and asked me for some of what I was having…it was a vegan escarole soup with simple root vegetables in the dead of winter. He gobbled the whole thing up in a matter of seconds and my jaw dropped and I smiled, staring at him as he guzzled down not one, but two bowls of what I called at the time, “nothing soup”. I can imagine I’ll be replaying that moment in my head as he grows into a young man and eventually leaves the nest. Family is in the title and family is at the core and heart of this book, which I love.
As for the men in your life…
My husband picked up the book and I made a “yep” face at him then smiled and continued cooking. He sifted through the pages and chose a soup. I informed him it was ninety degrees in the kitchen. Then, I saw the picture of the soup and honestly, drooled a little …just to myself. Then…I looked at the soup again later just to read and confirm…it’s a winner.
My point: That soup will be made…soon.
All the recipes are vegan, healthy and family friendly. You don’t have to be a vegetarian or a vegan to want this book. It’s practical and helps you introduce a lighter approach to cooking and eating with your family, which I love. It’s perfect if you’ve toyed with the idea of going vegetarian or vegan or even if you just want to try having one or two meals a week that are meatless. She (Ann) helps you understand the reason for veganism without preaching or depriving you of indulgence. I am a fan of unpreachiness…she nailed that spot on. This book educated me on veganism and vegan recipes without shaming me, which I fully respect, acknowledge and appreciate.
If you’ve never heard of Ann Gentry before, you are missing out! You can read her blog and her site and find out all about her. I love that she is a pioneer of healthy, organic, vegan cooking and is aiming her focus on family and home at the moment. With home cooking on her side, she will be an unstoppable force in the vegan movement, which I admire. This opportunity to share one of her recipes with you is an honor. Kale chips.
Don’t make that face at me. Yes. I said “kale chips”. Here’s why they’re awesome. They can be eaten as is, or they can be ground into a fine powder….yes I said powder. A powder that can be sprinkled in just about anything you add salt to. Mhmmmm. You know your picky eaters to eat kale? They do now. It’s fast, simple and easy. It has three ingredients, not including parchment paper.
I must admit that I was skeptical, but these are actually, surprisingly delicious on their own. I expected I would grind them and then sprinkle them into pizza sauce for my boys (not to sound like nay-sayer). However! I am now officially converted! Convenient and an easy way to add more vegetables to your family’s diet (with or without their knowledge). Amazing.
Kale is dark, leafy and packed with good stuff. When something goes from a leafy green vegetable to a chip…I am a fan. They taste amazing on their own. The crispy texture is odd, but addictive. There’s no weird bitter taste at all, which is what I had expected. They’re earthy, salty, and deliciously guilt free. There are several different variations for flavor in the book too. Absolutely delicious and so child-friendly too.
I loved this book so very much that I bought a copy to give to you readers too, you deserve it.
1. REQUIRED FOR ENTRY: Comment on this post below for the chance to win
2. SUGGESTED: Follow this link to Ann Gentry’s site just to check her out for yourself, perhaps leave a comment.
3. FOR AN ADDITIONAL ENTRY: If you haven’t already, you can like my facebook page then write in the comments that you already like the page or that you just liked the page. You’ll get two entries in the giveaway, rather than one.
Will end on Wednesday, June 29th at noon. Any comments made after this time will not be eligible for the giveaway. I will use a random number generator to choose the winner. One entry per person unless you “Like” KfS on Facebook for an additional chance to win the book, as stated above. This giveaway is only for the continental US, sorry guys on the other side of the world. Maybe when I make it big-time, I can afford that shipping fee, but I just can’t do it today. Hang in there, though. If you don’t win, don’t worry, you can buy the book yourself, which I recommend (if you couldn’t tell). It’s listed on Amazon for a discount at the moment. I love discounts, don’t you? Yeah, discounts are groovy.
baked kale chips
Adapted from: “Vegan Family Meals” By Ann Gentry
8 ounces Kale
- 1/4 Tsp. Sea Salt (fine ground)
- 1 Tbsp. Olive Oil
You need parchment paper to cook it on. I love parchment paper.
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.
Remove the stems/spine from the leaves and drizzle a tablespoon of olive oil over the kale, sprinkle with sea salt and spread it out on the parchment lined baking sheet.
Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes
That’s it. Not really difficult. Such a wonderful, healthy treat! Great for your family and mine.