Monday, January 17, 2011
I received a copy of Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything Vegetarian: Simple Meatless Recipes for Great Food for Christmas this year, and it's already in heavy rotation. This book can act as a home cook's go-to guide for how to prepare an exhaustive array of vegetables; the suggestions for cooking grains are many and deeply appreciated. Wondering what to do with the beets you bought at the farmers' market? Bittman has several simple methods for cooking them and a handful of recipe suggestions, including a beet and goat cheese gratin that sounds delicious.
What I love most about this book isn't the individual recipes, but rather how Bittman wants to shape your thinking about cooking. Instead of a recipe for a Pear, Gorgonzola and Walnut salad, Bittman offers Greens with Fruit, Cheese and Nuts, noting that "all sort of trios are possible, ranging from an all-American mix of apples, chessa and hazelnuts to the borderline wildness of cherries, goat cheese and pistachios." He then offers a basic recipe and 10 suggestions for fruit, cheese and nut combos. It's a freeing way to think about recipes and a wonderful resource. if you don't already have a copy of this veggie cooking tome, I'd highly recommend it.